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Eastleigh 2-1 Reading: Another Shocker For The Collection

We've seen this before, haven't we?

Eastleigh v Reading - Emirates FA Cup Second Round Photo by Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images

It's becoming an annual thing, this losing to non-league teams, isn’t it? Sim basically told me I could write what I wanted as long as it “passed for a match report”. So here goes.

Line-up-wise, there was enough to get something out of this game (eg, not lose). Bench-wise, there was enough to get something out of this game.

We started alright. And by alright, I mean if you fall down the stairs and break your arm, that’s alright in the circumstances. Femi Azeez was having some joy, Charlie Savage was getting on the ball a bit, we looked comfortable/not tested at the back. There were a few shots, Azeez with the best of the bunch.

On the 16th minute, as planned, tennis balls and fake £20 notes made their way on to the pitch. Mr Matterface did a good job of explaining to those in the dark why this was happening. Lee Dixon didn’t. A steward showed part of his bum. The game restarted.

Eastleigh got their tails up like intrigued foxes. Ben Elliott was rinsed on the left-hand side, Matty Carson went missing and allowed his man to cross smartly into the box. A blue-shirted player was there to prod home effortlessly. A nice goal, a confident finish, an ever so slightly undeserved lead. It was what it was.

What followed this was nothing short of unprofessional. Stray passes, lacklustre attacking play, lack of discipline. Who was the non-league team here? And I mean that with respect. We had, by half-time, completely lost our way, devoid of confidence and shorn of any sort of cohesion and team spirit.

Two changes followed the water break in the shape of Harlee Dean and Paul Mukairu, neither of which made the slightest bit of difference. Ruben Selles took off Savage who, attack-wise, was more likely to push forward than anyone else. Again, it made no difference.

Eastleigh were managing the game well and, despite being under some increasing levels of pressure, were able to handle the game well. Sam Smith arrived to stoke the fires a little but was caught offside more often than not.

Azeez then took it upon himself to rifle one into the net which gave us an undeserved equaliser, but it was gladly taken by everyone connected with the club. Tom Holmes may or may not have had a penalty but, regardless, we were sort of pushing for a winner, which was an improvement on the previous minutes in the game.

And then, of course, Eastleigh went up the other end and scored. FFS. Not a shock of course, but still gutting. It’s becoming a regular thing where we score and then concede almost straight after, it’s just that today we ran out of time to correct it.

In truth, we didn’t deserve it. The talk pre-match was that the protest would ruin Eastleigh’s day. What no one accounted for was that the players are more than capable of doing that for our own fans. Another shocking result, another gross performance and another low to add to the collection.

Still, see you Wednesday.