Hope is a liar, a cheat and a tease

21 Apr

Monday 21st April 2014

Leeds United 0.2 Nottingham Forest
(Derbyshire 2)

The most pleasing aspect of this result?

Derbyshire’s wholly unexpected scoring spree?
The re-ignition of our faint but tangible play-off hopes?
The clean sheet?
The fact that it was at Elland Road against dirty Leeds?

All very pleasing but for me, the faith in youth exhibited and the eagerness and desire from these players was particularly satisfying.

Ben Osborn is starting to make me worry that we’ll lose him before Stuart Pearce takes over; performances like the ones he’s turned in over the weekend will get the big boy vultures swooping. Stephen McLaughlin marked his debut with an assured performance and an assist – nice work. Dimitar Evtimov also made his first appearance between the sticks and despite a shocking first kick, recovered to make a vital contribution. Furthermore, Jamaal Lascelles looked more composed and back to his old self after a dodgy patch of form. And let’s not forget that Jamie Paterson is already one of our key players.

It started to feel like we could be proud of something once more: proud of the emphasis on youth. Their young little legs ran around a lot: the desire to make things happen and the absence of fear were in abundance. Regardless of the result, it felt good to see these lads gaining valuable experience for the future.

Of course, the result mattered too. The faint whiff of the play-offs is in the air, much to my surprise. Maybe, with the pressure off, the players are playing without fear and are focusing on the performance rather than the result – and with good performances, come good results. Maybe the sweeping changes in team selection, with the binning of serial underachievers such as Cox and Jara is making the difference. Maybe the poor quality of the opposition in the last two games has enabled us to chalk up some much needed wins. Maybe the footballing gods finally took pity on us and decided that we’d suffered enough. Whatever it is though, hope has been restored.


As Ben Folds sings in ‘Picture Window’:
“You know what hope is?
Hope is a bastard
Hope is a liar
A cheat and a tease
Hope comes near you?
Kick it’s backside
Got no place in days like these.”

I refuse to allow hope to surface.

I will simply enjoy the feeling that a win provides.

…until Saturday…and then I might allow hope to sneak in under the crack at the bottom of the door.


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