Boro Date With Destiny Tonight
By Robert Nichols
Wednesday 22 Jul 2020 18:19:00
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Just a point that is all it would take to put us out of our misery. We know Wigan will be stripped of 12 points should they be bottom three at the end of tonight. But then they will appeal. So, just one solitary point taken from the final game of the season away at Hillsborough by Boro this evening will stop all the worry in its tracks. Kick off 7.30pm.

But that means Garry Monk and Adam Reach and a club that has stepped far out of line with FFP and something that has long enraged Boro. And Hillsborough is a ground where Boro have twice been relegated since our own administration in 1986. So, there is a lot of history and baggage in a fixture that otherwise would probably be as straight forward as say Luton v Blackburn. As in Sheff Wed haven't looked too interested since resumption after lockdown. A middling side, their play off push bottomed out but they managed to coast ahead of the relegation pack. Unless the independent adjudicators dock them multiple points. But when exactly is that going to happen. Not before the end of the season, that much is clear now.

So, that leaves us to tidy up our affairs. Without Howson. Neil Warnock was quoted this week as saying just how much this senior pro had let down everyone. And the manager himself had said as much when Howson skulked off after picking up his needless red card. One of the stand out players this season, whether at full back, midfield or central defence. We will miss him for sure.

Warnock has called Clayton back into the fold after he left for family reasons at the weekend. But lets not talk anymore about the weekend. What a let down again as Boro continue to have the Riverside blues. Be thankful tonight's task comes away from the River Tees, where we still famously have not won this calendar year. Don't we know it.

Boro fans are sure to have one eye on their stream and another on a mobile or whatever connects them to the scores of all the other clubs beneath us at kick off. Can Leeds remain focussed and continue their League Champions form at home to Charlton. Or with no fans and no incentive will they dip in form? I was going to type after a week of partying but I just cannot see any Marcelo Bielsa team bevvying it up, can you? But will they retain the intensity to prevent a desperate Charlton from taking full points. We hope so.

Hull and Barnsley are just not in it as we are concerned. It is all about staying out of the third bottom place, currently occupied by Luton. The Hatters like Charlton are on 48 points. But unlike Charlton, Luton's goal difference is horrendous and they need to win and us lose to leapfrog Boro.

Yet you look at the game at home to Blackburn and it should be tailor made for them. Except Blackburn ended a very up and down lockdown sequence with a 4-3 win at Reading on Saturday. Can Tony Mowbray coax a favour for his hometown team from Rovers? Or is their work done now for the season and will we be relying on Luton to hit a roadblock of nerves and pressures. The team we drew with on the opening day of the season have felt the pressures of late when needing a victory. Except for against Hull City. But that goes without saying really as the Tigers have long since lost their tiger in the tank.

So to Birmingham City on the same points as us but adrift on goal difference. The Brummies have looked desperately bad of late. They take on a Derby side whose play off challenge has totally crumbled in defeat after defeat. Rooney and the Rams wheels have totally fallen off. You feel it could be a big ask for Phillip Cocu to be able to coax them to do anything other than whimper out of the season? Nothing against Birmingham but they possibly deserve to take a big hit, they have been pretty inept lately and their club constantly drives a coach and horses through FFP rules aka cheating. Just ask Derby County about that.

So, the EFL confirmed yesterday what was becoming increasingly clear that there will not be a judgement against Sheff Wed or Derby before tonight. Having called everyone back for this special lockdown end of season circus the least they could have done was to ensure that everyone knew where they stood before the final whistle sounds close of play tonight. Especially when you consider how many months ago the charge sheet was read out to them. Shambolic is the word that is most usually used for the EFL these days or years. A trade body that constantly lets down its members and more importantly, supporters.

But look, lets not leave ourselves in the lap of the (act of) Gods from Wigan's appeal. Let's take a point back with us from Sheffield and leave ourselves in the clear ahead of the bottom three. Neil Warnock can discuss his future and our future tomorrow with Steve Gibson knowing for certain that they are both deciding over the direction of a Championship club.

Hopefully, George Friend can return yet another captain's innings at the back. Tav can carry the energy through midfield. Roberts can bring invention and find wriggle room in the box and Britt and Ashley Fletcher pull the trigger and continue their recent goals form. You have to feel once again, that as much as there is personally riding on it for the Wednesday manager, his players will not be quite so motivated should we get our noses ahead. Let's finish the job of staying up on the pitch tonight and not be frantically looking over our shoulders and watching several platforms and devices all at the same time.

Oh and raise a glass on 56 minutes to Jan King Of Sogn, Boro's Norwegian fan that fell in love with our team and town many years ago but sadly passed away at the age of 56 last weekend. Win it for King of Sogn.

Come on Boro and Up The Boro


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