The Guardian: The former Brighton & Hove Albion and Maccabi Tel Aviv manager spent Sunday night under observation after feeling discomfort 24 hours after overseeing his first game in charge, a 1-0 defeat at Charlton Athletic. The 41-year-old had further tests on Monday. He also missed training and did not travel with the squad to Lancashire. The assistant coaches, Ruben Martínez and Javier Pereira, will take charge at Bloomfield Road.
The last match we could sing the ‘Terry and Ray’ chant. After the game Ray Lewington’s assistant Terry Burton agreed to take up the same position with the Bluebirds.
BSAD report: Good omens or no, it appeared that a number of Hornets had considered the “this is stupid” line of argument rather more seriously than we had, with only two hundred and fifty travelling fans in the away end, a figure in part explained by the fact that this was the least accessible of three consecutive away trips within the next week. I can’t help but feel that many Hornets have missed out over the last couple of seasons though… Ninian Park is hardly the most salubrious ground in the division, but it boasts an away terrace, a low roof and a bar area which combined to fuel a better atmosphere than has been achieved by many times as large a travelling support elsewhere in the recent past.
BSAD report: For all the occasional moments of utter glory, documented elsewhere, this was what the last ten years of lower division football were usually like. Abysmal football in front of less than seven thousand fidgety fans in the sweeping rain. Dreadful League Cup and Auto Windscreen ties with the likes of Southend and Torquay in an empty stadium foolishly built for bigger things. Roger Willis, Derek Payne, Geoff bloody Pitcher. Awful.
It was an awful night, let’s get to the point. It was drizzling, it was empty, it was ten pounds to get in. (And twenty to get out, we reckoned at half time.) Could tell from the off no-one wanted to be out there on the pitch, and that feeling spread to the stands within minutes. So what if we hadn’t scored since the Premiership title race was still in the balance? We attempted passes of the sodden, slippery ball with the aplomb of those old farts who kick it back to you in the park to look good in front of their ladies and it winds up sliced into someone’s picnic miles from where you’re standing. Except that there were Wigan players in the way tonight, to make us look even stupider. Thank goodness they fell over nearly as frequently as we did, but they had better ideas while they were upright, which gave the lie to blaming it all on the rain. And they knew that if you’re splitting two legs over a week (ah, that’s where the crappy pun was going…) you have to make the away one count. So we gave them as much help as we could, and for 45 minutes we were unspeakable. I don’t remember when we last booed the boys off the pitch at half-time. But for future reference, it was tonight.
This was the last time we’d play at the Goldstone Ground.