They may need a new central defender and a couple of midfielders at Vicarage Road, but the scriptwriter is clearly still in rude health. A game with more twists and turns than the River Colne ended with points and goals, thrillingly shared.
Only one place to start. Jaysus. The level of expectation associated with Helguson’s return might have been slightly moderated by his injury-burdened last few years, but only slightly. It was still wholly unreasonable to expect him to pick up where he left off, the whirling dervish focal point of the team. As it turned out he exceeded all expectations… announcing his arrival by flying into Leicester’s goalkeeper within thirty seconds and deflecting the ball narrowly the wrong side of the post.
Fizzle. It should, of course, be remembered that there have been less auspicious starts than this to very auspicious seasons; we all crave answers, but these early season games often raise still more questions instead. It was a bit of a non-alcoholic beer of a match: the same fizz as the bottle’s cracked open, but some bite missing from what’s inside.
Hornblogger: The half time entertainment was provided by Mark Falco doing Harry’s 50/50 draw. Maybe he’d not drawn a raffle before but he made the mistake of pulling out three tickets whose numbers ran consecutively. I suppose you’d be pleased if you had those three tickets. I don’t think they’ll be asking him to do it again.
(taken from Watford v Blackpool programme 22nd August 2009)
A telling memory of How Things Used To Be from the recent Clough documentary: Forest players in the centre circle, turning to greet and be greeted by each of the stands before kickoff. We used to do that too, a line of players in the middle of the pitch. It meant something. Now, it’s not until we’ve had a pedestrian parade of players and officials across the full width of the pitch, followed by an extended mingle with nibbles and a free bar, that we get to applaud and be applauded by our team. Or the first two or three of our team, to be precise: by the time you get halfway down the line-up, everyone’s got bored and the remaining players just wander into position rather than bother to sprint purposefully towards the Rookery. Something essential has been lost here…and for what, exactly?
Francis Jeffers was Sheffield Wednesday’s hero as his last minute penalty earned his side a 2-2 draw at Watford. The two in-form sides played out an entertaining spectacle at Vicarage Road that saw Marcus Tudgay head Wednesday into the lead, only for Mark Beevers’ own goal to give Watford parity going into the break. Jobi McAnuff thought he had done enough to earn the Hornets a maximum haul when he headed home after the interval, but it was Jeffers that held his nerve at the death to give Brian Laws’ side a share of the spoils.
I made the mistake of suggesting to ig after about an hour that the ref was doing OK. The ref then proceeded to lose it completely… Jeffers staying on after kicking Loach was extraordinary, Wood’s yellow card utterly implausible (if he fouled Priskin it was long before the covering defenders arrived), Cowie had a penalty shout ignored and plenty of controversy surrounded Wednesday’s late goal….