More than 60 per cent possession, more than 20 shots, yet Palace travelled back up the M23 from the Amex Stadium with all three points, but to quote David Coleman, “Goals pay the rent”, and that is the name of the game.
The Albion should have beaten their rivals comfortably last Saturday, but again frustration and disappointment were the only things forthcoming.
I will get this out early in that I still believe the Albion will stay up, I maintain that Norwich, Villa and Bournemouth will be the three clubs to fall through the relegation trap door.
How Harty?, I hear the readers cry.
I think we will pick up points against Arsenal, Man United, Southampton, Norwich, Newcastle and Burnley, and that as with the previous two seasons will just be enough.
Having said that, and I take no pleasure in writing this, that when the final whistle sounds at Turf Moor on the last day of the season, the hunt for a new Albion manager needs to start.
Bizarrely I like Graham Potter, his outlook is in some ways quite refreshing, but I believe in the long term for the Albion to establish themselves in the Premier League.
His team selection and tactics sometimes represent apparent ‘muddled thinking’, frankly when the teams were announced on Saturday lunchtime the shock that Glenn Murray had been dropped was widespread.
In my opinion Murray on from the start would have seen Albion get all three points rather than the gutting defeat suffered, Palace were dire, but produced one moment which effectively ‘mugged’ Brighton and clearly talking to fans and reading social media I’m not the only one.
To reiterate I think the Albion won’t go down, but only just, like last season, back then with the greatest respect to Chris Hughton it was time for a change.
Even with survival guaranteed, will that change be viewed as working? Or merely a case of exchanging apples for apples 12 months on?
That said, come May I would rather see Potter and the Albion parting by the old favourite ‘mutual consent’, whatever it costs, because I’m not sure after back to back relegation battles that we could do it a third time with the same management team.
Nothing personal, there’s something that’s just not quite right, and as we know bouncing back from the bear pit that is the Championship is not that easy.
Then again, even I get it wrong sometimes, so maybe Graham Potter will surprise us all and suddenly everything will click into place, as the legendary Jimmy Greaves said on numerous occasions “It’s a funny old game”.