So we’ll have to play our northern pals without services of 30-goal Thierry Henry, and anyone who thinks this is not a blow has probably had a blow to his head. However, look at the following record and we can all rest a little more comfortably: The six league games he has missed this season have brought us four wins, one draw and one (meaningless, given the circumstances), loss. You could add the first half of the Everton game to that stat too, if you fancied. If you did, it would be goals scored: 15. Goals conceded: 3.
Anyway, that’s a roundabout way of proving that we are anything but a one-man band, and I think the biggest recipient of this could be Robin van Persie. He had a patch mid-season of starting league games, but fell out of favour after his daft red card at Southampton on 26 Feb. It wasn’t until 25 April – less than one month before the cup final – that he started again, and it’s testament to him that he has dragged himself into contention for a starting berth at Cardiff in that short period of time.
We’ve got the added distraction of Colegate to contend with this week, and we’ve just got to hope it doesn’t weigh on Cole at all. It’s not that I feel sorry for him – I have a well of sympathy approximately ¼ inch deep – but without the services of Gael Clichy, he’s the only player in his position.
And finally, the prize for the crappest excuse goes to the people that decided not to hold an FA Cup final parade, should we win. Apparently, it’s been decided that there’ll be no party, “due to the difficulties which all parties have encountered when discussing the organisation of a safe event in such a short time frame”.
Absolute piffle, that is. Every time we win anything, the same logistical question comes up, and is overcome. And what of the “short time frame”? We beat Blackburn one month and one day ago, and we got to the semi-final on 12 March, two months ago. Rubbish! Boo!