Vital Football

Latest Crystal Palace News

Shut Up You Rs'es

Shut Up You Rs'es

Anyone who has ever listened to a football phone-in would be forgiven for thinking that the actions of footballers regularly start riots. Rarely does a 606-type show pass without the prophesising of some apocalyptic consequence to an act of oafishness on a football pitch. But genuine riots are a rarity in British football. Even rarer when Millwall are not playing.

There was not a riot on Friday night following the one-all draw between Crystal Palace and Reading. The major talking point to emerge from a very good game was the reaction to Andy Johnson’s goal celebration. After successfully converting a penalty Palace’s England international headed in the general direction of the Royals’ supporters for a chinwag. Pleasantries, or otherwise, were exchanged before the Reading players answered Johnson’s actions in the most brutal of fashions scoring an emphatic equaliser.

Ever since the chief of the Pug Uglies, or Steve Bruce as he is sometimes known, drew Johnson’s honour into disrepute he has been burdened with the tag of a player who goes to ground easily. Opposition supporters, perhaps intimidated by his prowess as a player, have been quick to remind Johnson of his unfounded reputation. Friday’s celebration followed 78 minutes of incessant baiting from the Reading fans.

Selhurst Park is a football ground which has seen some particularly memorable reactions to supporter derision over the years. Eric Cantona’s kung fu kick springing most readily to mind. But Johnson did not suffer racial abuse, and he did not dive over the advertising hoardings either.

Part of what makes live football special is the interaction between player and supporter. Do we want a game played by passionless robots behind soundproof Perspex? Surely by targeting a specific player supporters hope to elicit a response. Is it right to expect this to be a wholly one-way process? If you can’t do the time don’t do the crime. The Reading fans wanted a response from Johnson and they got one. Sadly for them they didn’t like the flavour. “But oh Johnson could have started a riot blah blah blah.” Get real. He scored; he celebrated and received a caution. No one died; move on.

Reading are a credit to the Championship and I wouldn’t be disappointed to see them prosper in the Premiership. They play with refreshing vitality, have some outstanding players and a manager who every Palace supporter loves and respects. But just because you are in possession of a royal nickname doesn’t make you the rightful proprietors of the Corinthian ethos. Glory and pretension do not sit well together. In the two or so hours that Andy Johnson has played against them this season he has been one of the few players outside the Premiership to make them look remotely beatable. Is it the threat of his goals or their celebration that causes most genuine alarm?

Andy Johnson has only scored more than once against two clubs this season: Stoke City and Reading.

Date:Sunday January 22 2006
Time: 12:32PM


That's Reading fans for you though!
01/03/2006 00:43:00
He (Johnson) belongs in the premiership. It is a credit to him that he stuck with you and probably the reason you could get back.
22/03/2006 03:10:00
They won't get back gray. Not spending enough money.
30/04/2006 22:44:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Crystal Palace Articles

Audio - Pardew Reflects On Leicester

Manager Alan Pardew has been giving his thoughts following Saturday's loss to Leicester City.

Vital View - Premier League, 22nd-23rd October

Manchester City continue to lead the way ahead of Arsenal. Hull dropped into the bottom three with Swansea and Sunderland below them.

Stats: Leicester City v Crystal Palace

All the stats from Leicester City (3) vs (1) Crystal Palace, King Power Stadium, 22/10/16 Att: 31,969

Follow Palace Live On Twitter

Leicester City are at the King Power Stadium with Crystal Palace the visitors today, this will be a 3pm kick-off.

Archived Vital Palace Articles

Vital Palace articles from

Site Journalists

Eddy Eagle
Editor email

Current Poll (see more polls)

Leicester MotM
Suggested By: Site Staff
Sub - Lee Chung-yong0%
Sub - Campbell0%
Sub - Fryers25%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Man City 9 6 2 1 20 11
2 Arsenal 9 6 2 1 20 10
3 Liverpool 9 6 2 1 20 9
4 Chelsea 9 6 1 2 19 10
5 Spurs 9 5 4 0 19 9
6 Everton 9 4 3 2 15 5
7 Man Utd 9 4 2 3 14 1
8 Southampton 9 3 4 2 13 3
9 Watford 9 3 3 3 12 0
10 AFC Bournemouth 9 3 3 3 12 0
11 Crystal Palace 9 3 2 4 11 0
12 Leicester City 9 3 2 4 11 -4
13 WBA 9 2 4 3 10 0
14 Burnley 9 3 1 5 10 -5
15 West Ham 9 3 1 5 10 -7
16 Stoke 9 2 3 4 9 -7
17 Middlesbrough 9 1 4 4 7 -4
18 Hull City 9 2 1 6 7 -14
19 Swansea 9 1 2 6 5 -7
20 Sunderland 9 0 2 7 2 -10
Write for Vital Football
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
The Vital Football Members League

Recent Crystal Palace Results (view all)

Crystal Palace Fixtures (view all)

Oct 29 2016 5:30PM : Liverpool (H)
Barclays Premier League
Nov 5 2016 3:00PM : Burnley (a)
Barclays Premier League
Nov 19 2016 3:00PM : Manchester City (H)
Barclays Premier League
Nov 26 2016 3:00PM : Swansea City (a)
Barclays Premier League
Dec 3 2016 3:00PM : Southampton (H)
Barclays Premier League
Dec 10 2016 3:00PM : Hull City (a)
Barclays Premier League

Vital Members League Table

Vital Football Comment