This was the crunch match of the season for me. The club that stole two key players from us before the season started and our manager at the start of last season. Mind you we whipped 'em good an' proper last year (5-1) , a game that effectively saw Parky get the sack, and at the time put us on the verge of a play-off position and Hull rooted in the bottom three. How times have changed!
The standard of play was different too. I have to say that Hull played some attractive imaginative football at times and thoroughly deserved the win tonight. As for the U's, well once again I am amazed that the manager can think they gave 100%. I saw forwards ambling around for most of the game, unable to control or pass the ball. Midfield ran the ball into trouble for no apparent reason, and defenders were panicking whenever they had the ball with time to spare. That's not even 50% in my calculation. How we managed to keep the score so close for so long until the killer goal near the end I don't know. Even some of the die-hard fans were out on the street before the end of this game along with the regular early leavers.
I remember earlier in the season Kevin Watson moaning at the fans who were moaning at the players. For a good half an hour the fans tonight were in great voice and we had quite a noise from the away terraces to contend with too. The atmosphere was much like a lot of the home games last season when we were on a high. But then the final hour brought a procession of half-hearted attempts, poor passing, running into trouble, and time wasted by Gerken tending to his cabbage patch ahead of every goal kick.
Even the best chances passed by without so much as a 'wooooooooo' from the home support. It has reached the stage when we just know that there's no point in getting excited unless someone is clear on goal and it's a dead cert that it's going in.
On the radio after the game the BBC Essex commentator was obsessed with the standard of refereeing, despite Geraint Williams telling him to get over it and move on. In fact I heard there were a lot of fans who felt that the referee spoiled the game. True, he wasn't up to an acceptable standard, but the real reason we lost is that the players didn't show enough quality on the ball, not enough passion or desire to win, no sense of where their teammates were, no idea what to do with the ball. I'm sorry, but my fellow supporters are blind to the obvious. Forget the officials. We need to get back to basics and play a team game.