`It Matters Not Who Won Or Lost, But How You Played`

Last updated : 16 April 2002 By Jim Coulson
After having witnessed the debacle that was Southend away, it was great
to see United playing with passion and guile against a bunch of Conference

Never before have I seen so many elbows flying, fists in faces or players going down as if pole-axed, working out the game has gone on, and getting up fine.

If we can take one satisfaction from Cheltenham's impending promotion, it will be their inevitable descent back into obscurity.

Oh, to see the look on Julian Alsop's face when he realises that you can't just get by, using your beer gut to knock defenders out of the way.

Alsop is part of a select group of lower division strikers, along with Paul Moody at Oxford. The 'if you can't beat them, beat them up' school.

This column was originally intended as a look at what it is like to not be able to see your team very often and it's slightly demeaned by the fact that I've seen three of the last four matches, including the abomination at Leyton Orient.

Based on the aforementioned adage, both teams should have points deducted, probably enough to make Halifax safe.

It really was that bad. United were the worst I have seen them in years, Orient displayed some Keystone Cops-esque shooting and the home crowd were whipped up into a vegetative state, obviously not realising the minute's silence was well over.

Praise must go to the travelling fans who really made an effort throughout despite the uninspiring game.

The irritation was compounded by a needless red card for the ever frustrating Steve Torpey, how can a man whose only jobs are to win the high ball, hold it up, flick it on accurately and score occasionally never be substituted even when he fails most, if not all of these tasks on a regular basis?

I hate to have a go at anyone at United, but you have to question the manager's judgement, it is bemusing at best.

Having said that, the booing of Carl Bradshaw during the game at Southend was completely unacceptable, a bit like booing your Grandma at the Olympics.

Ok, she shouldn't be there, she isn't good enough and she has no idea what she's doing, but she is, as Eastenders constantly reminds us, (adopt dodgy Cockney accent) fahhh-mly, innit?

Getting on a player's back at the game is not going to help anyone.

Oh, and you can't leave her stranded at a service station, either.

Finally, to the Observer reader who complained about Jamie McCombe
being heralded as one of the top players outside the Premiership, by ranting
on about how Scunny never produce any decent players, I have four words.
Kevin Keegan, remember him? And that's just for starters...

Up the Iron.

Jim can be heard weekdays on SBN Radio, weekdays between 2 and 7PM (across Student Radio Stations nationwide, www.sbn.co.uk and Sky Digital Channel 894)

His column can be read exclusively on Iron-Bru.net every Thursday (and occasionally on Monday's, when he's overrun at work, like when the Queen Mum dies)