Saturday, 16 November 2013

The Championship is relentless but so enjoyable

The Championship should not be this enjoyable I keep thinking to myself. Why should I get so excited every match day when I know I will feel anguish, tension and possible disappointment? I think it's because I also know that every now and again I will experience a moment of sheer delight when the Cherries bring back three points. The league is so tight and all the teams have individual players that can do something special in an instant to win a game. And if the bad games out weigh the good ones so be it. I'll still love AFCB and support the team just like all of you. Yet, there is one part of the season that I am finding hard to deal with. I bet you can guess when that is. Yes, it's during these international breaks.

Don't get me wrong I follow the national team and will want them to do well next year in Brazil. But the Championship is simply addictive. A week without a game seems like a punishment or like coming off a craving. Watch out, football withdraw systems are not very pleasant. But why is the Championship in particular such an adrenaline rush?

For AFCB fans the games don't last any longer than they would in League One or Two. They don't have the same media coverage as the Premiership. However, come match day we just can't get enough of being in the Championship and I don't think it is all because we know there is a prize for three teams at the end of the season who will win promotion to the Premiership or the fear of seeing your team being sucked into the bottom three. As an AFCB fan its about belonging here, sampling the atmosphere and seeing our players take on other great players.

Sure the Championship is relentless, but it's also exhilarating, full of passionate fans and managers that must simply love the pressure aiming to do the impossible - getting a win, after win, after win. With 46 games in the season I can't say that we don't get enough games. But I miss the action and the excitement when there is an international break.

I suppose we need to take a break though every now and again. It's a time to reflect and heel some of the injuries that our players have suffered. For AFCB it is probably an advantage that we don't have as many international players as some of the other teams in the league. Our players really may be able to have a rest, but it won't be for long.

I also think the hotch potch make up of the Championship is one of its charms. There are all types of teams here those that should be in the Premiership, those that have been in the division for far too long and the small towns that are holding their own and defying the odds. Some may think the novelty of AFCB being back in the Championship is why I am finding it so enjoyable, but even when the Cherries were in League One and League Two I particularly wanted to know what was happening in the Championship.

There is something about this division. It was always a target that I felt was achievable for AFCB and now that the club is there it should be something that we take in as much of as we can. And yes, even the international breaks should be welcomed, because they are part of the character of the Championship and indeed the Premiership. We are not used to them but I hope Eddie Howe and the team are making the most of them when they come around, because watching the Championship every week is exhausting stuff - I just hope it can continue for a long time for AFCB fans.  

Are you enjoying it?

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