Harty on... Palace’s promotion and the Albion

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SO, hands up, who actually watched it?

Almost 50 years since the first time children, and adults for that matter, watched parts of Doctor Who from behind the sofa, how many Albion fans hid behind their furniture on Monday during the Championship play-off final?

Confession is good for the soul, so I freely admit with friends round and a sunny afternoon in the garden, I didn’t succumb until 84 minutes, and then switched off after the penalty went in.

Congratulations to Crystal Palace on your promotion to the Premier League and, to quote the words of the late, great Hughie Green, I mean that most sincerely.

I am, despite having almost a grudging admiration for Palace boss Ian Holloway, quite surprised how quickly he started talking about next season in negative terms.

Never mind bask in your glory for a bit, sound bites along the lines of “we’re on a hiding to nothing” and “we will be lucky to survive” won’t exactly fill the Selhurst faithful with confidence if that’s what the manager thinks less than 24 hours after getting promoted.

As for the Albion, the old phrase of “no news is good news” clearly doesn’t apply in this situation.

At the time of going to press, Gus Poyet and his management team remain suspended by the club, a fact which does neither party any good.

Last week’s column was dissected on an Albion internet forum at the weekend.

A healthy debate ensued, although it was somewhat quite ironic that one of my most vocal critics online was the person who earlier in the week decided to post details of Gus Poyet’s property, including his address, on the net – something he may later come to regret.

Needless to say, both the property details and, after a heated debate, the thread regarding my column, were removed due to potential legal issues.

I realise that even the wannabe estate agent is an Albion fan and, like the rest of us, takes no pleasure in seeing the current situation.

In the last few years, from a desperate position, the club has moved on leaps and bounds under the guidance of both Tony Bloom and Gus Poyet, which makes this current mess all the more upsetting to see.

Hopefully, there will be a solution, sooner rather than later.

The other Friday evening, Worthing Dynamos had the honour of being the first official engagement for Worthing’s new mayor, councillor Bob Smytherman, when he was one of the guests at their annual presentation night.

Bob certainly didn’t disappoint and was clearly a hit with all the youngsters, and during the evening he briefly switched sports when he spoke to me about his intention to mark Worthing Raiders achievements this season, with a reception for the team and club officials in the mayor’s parlour.

As I understand it, Bob is in the throes of coming up with a date and then he will contact the rugby club forthwith.

By way, a footnote Mr Mayor, if it’s any help, I understand those boys are quite thirsty and hungry when it comes to functions, so a pre-reception trip to the cash and carry might be in order.