" I'll have the ball thanks lads. When you're playing football the crowd aren't looking at me ! "
Save for the last 20 minutes or so this was a dull game that won't live long in the memory and referee, Gavin Ward, did little to help matters.
Gav's was inconsistent all afternoon. He pulled one of our lads for a foul early in the second half and to totally ignore the same offence by a Boro player two minutes later. Gav stopped play to book TBH when Boro had a promising attack. He was overly fussy regarding the taking of free kicks and that only served to slow down a match that was hardly free flowing at the best of times.
The Addicks were better in second half and kept pressing for a change especially following Adomah's dismissal. Bulot hit the post and there was a shot cleared off the line although I'm not sure whose it was.
Boro were disappointing. They were keen to make cynical fouls and sadly Mr Ward let them, rarely picking up on them.
I'm not sure what happened with Bikey and Bamford but I'd have thought that if the Chelsea man had copped an elbow from the beast then he'd not have recovered so quickly and we might have seen some claret !
The early season panache seems to have gone missing for now. Buyens in particular isn't performing as he was in August when he displayed a range of positive and probing passes. Skip didn't have a great day and we looked better when young Jordan went into the centre.
Cousins deserves a lot of praise as he is coping manfully whilst playing out of position. Clearly it doesn't come naturally to him but there's no lack of effort on his part.
Igor barely got a sniff yesterday and that's not all due to Boro's defence or their manhandling of him. He clearly needs an effective strike partner. To that end I was disappointed that young Aherne-Grant wasn't given a go yesterday.
As always a few folk left before the final whistle with some leaving as early as the 80th minute. They missed some of the best of what action there was and I'd include the guy who ran onto the pitch and grabbed a corner flag. I assume he was a Boro fan as he ran towards the Smoggies in the Jimmy Seed.
Post match was spent in The Old Loyal Britons where it was warm enough to sit outside. Very pleasant.
I bumped into ( not literally ) a Norwich fan at Euston. He seemed a bit worse for wear although thankfully didn't start shouting " where are you ? we need a twelfth man here " etc. etc. However, in between some incoherent mumblings ( his not mine ! ) I was able to determine that he felt the Canaries were better playing away than at home.
Whatever, we face a tough game on Tuesday and whilst some were disappointed with a draw yesterday, another one on Tuesday would be a good return.