Fear and loathing in Aston as we welcome Manchester City.
And here we go with another round of Oh God, do we have to? Some matches are to be enjoyed and some endured. There’s no getting away from what this one will be all about, and perhaps it being midweek might tone the hype down a bit even if the traffic will be worse than usual.
One thing it won’t do is tone down the attitude of some of the most insufferable fans in the world. There was a time when if you met Manchester City supporters, all you had to do was say how much you hated their red mates and you had free drinks and friends for life. Their gallows humour in the midst of suffering the most laughably badly-run club in football was something to admire and you wondered what would happen if they ever had any success.
Now you know, and it’s not a pretty sight. Normal supporters are powered by hope and optimism; with this lot it’s expectation and entitlement. If it’s a trophy it’s theirs by right and if it’s a player they have to have him. And this from a club whose claims to fame used to be the tallest floodlights in the league and her with the bell.
What makes it worse is that we used to have a lot in common with them, not least that the greatest manager of both clubs arrived straight after being sacked by the other. They’re in a different orbit for now, and when we finally get to where they are I hope we behave a bit better. They’ve got Kyle Walker, who was on loan to us a decade ago, and Scott Carson, who was here for a bit even longer ago and who has more medals than he’s played games for them. I can’t think of anyone else there who’s got any connection to us.
We’re in form and our record against them couldn’t be much worse. The law of averages should get us something from the game even if the law of stating the obvious says different. A point will be cause for joy and a win something to really celebrate in the queue at Witton station.