So, here we are a month after the season finished. Missing football and especially Manchester City.
You see the thing is, I had the wildest dream. I dreamed a dream where Manchester City obliterated the Premier League for the second consecutive season. I dreamed of stunning goals, of goal line clearances, of 97 points in second place. Of Raheem Sterling seizing his moment and Bernardo Silva exploding into one of the best players in the League. And right now, I am frightened of waking up.
It has been a mesmeric couple of years as a City fan. Where the excellence I have witnessed on the pitch was so stunning – so totally invigorating – my breath was literally taken away at times. My mouth left open wide accompanied by the unusual spectacle of watching goals in silence. Delayed celebrations followed as we all realised what we had seen with our own eyes was true and it was actually a goal.
And yet right now we sit in the limbo – the vast hinterland between the ending of one exciting season and the dawning of another. It is in these moments of reflection and supposed relaxation where we as City fans are meant to be putting up our proverbial feet and resting for the trauma ahead.
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But that is impossible, for in these moments I am left with the niggling doubt which will grow as the close season grows longer and longer. What if – in this Summer sojourn, we forget how to play? What if we drink too much beer, and eat too many chips? What if 6 trophies in two seasons has satiated our thirst? What if the hunger has gone?
For England in mid week some of our players forgot they were footballers at all. Now, I am not too upset by that in itself, as I do not care for International Football, but what if this malaise has set in and next season we find ourselves struggling against mid table opposition like Bournemouth and Manchester United?
Do fans of other Clubs suffer these dilemmas? I like to think this kind of self doubt is an important part of our make up at City. Not taking anything for granted seems like a trait that it is better to be associated with as a fan group than pushing people into fountains. So being rational I have to accept that I quite like the pain of this period – of wondering whether the brilliant football is about to evaporate.
This is the point of it all really. In these moments where we are preparing to regroup and go again, where we wonder whether the addition of the new Benjani may make the difference. It is in the anticipation and worry of these periods where fans are truly born.
I try my best to stay in touch with my Club, as though in some small way I can keep up the momentum. Today I arranged and sorted last season’s football programme collection. Tomorrow I will put my signed picture of Riyad Mahrez, purchased after the drunken whimsy of the Brighton win, into a frame.
All in all though, I will spend my day dreaming moments reliving the glories of our recent past and hoping it is not too greedy to ask for more. Just another League Cup would be lovely. Until then, I will keep my eyes tightly closed, praying not to wake up.