Yes. One of the on pitch highlights as Cov spanked Luton with a fairly flattering 3-0 victory thanks to what was at the time a rare McNulty goal, the best free kick Shipley will ever take and a mad last minute scramble from The Duck.
Despite this Luton would bag one of the automatic promotion slots, so here I am again. As a consequence this one is a bit light on non-football content. Sorry transport and shit building fans, read this instead.
I covered it in more than enough detail last season. Wanted to get in and out asap this time round.
The journey up
For some reason this was deemed worthy of TV coverage and shunted to Sunday lunchtime, cruelly denying me the option of a direct Thameslink from Charlton.
The 11 am East Midlands from St Pancras instead followed by a 15 minute yomp to the ground. No margin for error but made it on time.
A dumb half time hunch that we’d win at 4/1
Cov had followed up the unnecessarily nervy win at Rochdale with a more comprehensive 3-0 win over Walsall to record the first home win of the year. Off the pitch things were looking less positive with a deadline to sort out the long running Ricoh saga by 5th March or face getting thrown out of the league making the back pages (Google it)
Luton meanwhile were on a scarcely believable 20 match unbeaten run that had propelled them to the top of the league.
And yet for some crazy reason I was feeling optimistic. Scarcely believable unbeaten runs are there to be beaten.
It took about 5 minutes for me to realise my optimism may have been misplaced as Luton sailed through the Cov midfield and shot narrowly over. The opening goal came as little surprise. A highly dubious corner nodded in unmarked from 4 yards out to give Luton a deserved early lead. Arse.
In an unlikely turn of events Cov would appear to be back in it later on when Bakayoko latched onto an utterly dreadful backpass, was promptly wiped out by the Luton keeper and the ref pointed to the spot. Except the ref had actually pointed near the spot signalling for a goal kick instead.
Still there would be a celebration shortly after as Hiwula beat the Luton right back and laid it off for Shipley to smash one in from 6 yards. A straightforward chance that far too many of our strikers have failed to put away this season. 1-1.
Half time would come without further incident. The second half would be consist largely of Luton camping out in the Cov penalty area at the opposite side of the ground to me, with any Cov attacks snuffed out by Luton’s giant brute of a centre back. It was uncomfortable viewing, with Luton going dangerously close on several occasions, notably when a deflected free kick fell kindly to a Luton player who proceeded to smack it virtually at a prone Lee Burge. And yet somehow Cov would cling on for a valuable point.
It wasn’t exactly fun, but a lot more satisfying than dominating play and coming out with nothing to show for it. A draw against a team looking like they’ll run away with the league is not to be sniffed at.