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Patches OHoolahan

The benefits to our last 4 games:

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Alternatively this thread could be titled clutching at straws for optimists but here goes:

1. Playing the big teams the players may feel less pressure and expectancy to win, so playing with greater freedom.

2. We have done well to stifle teams like Spurs and Citeh at home, and our style of play under Hughton suits that sort of a game where we frustrate the opposition before hitting them on the counter.

3. If we are still in serious trouble in these games, players might be thinking selfishly about being in the shop window, thereby upping their game (lets hope the inverse doesn''t occur- I refer to that as the "Damien Francis" effect).

4. The atmosphere when we have held our own against big teams has been superb, much better than when we struggle to beat or even draw with our relegation rivals, which in turn will hopefully inspire the players to greater heights.

5. We have the opportunity to help determine where the title goes this year, and wouldn''t it be great if we were the blip for Chelski, Liverpool and Arsenal that cost them all the title?

6. If we do get some surprise results, then it would be a big two fingers up to all the journos/pundits who kept banging on about our run-in.

So after all that straw-clutching nonsense, here''s hoping that my optimism is reflected in reality come May, that we have stayed in the Premier League.

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