Know mine enemy...
Of course football is played with clubs looking to exploit any weakness, be that to a team as a whole or a player - it would be naïve to think that anything other than this goes on, but deliberately looking to inflict pain on something is not something many would do, right?
I was not at the game, the first one I had missed this season, and have not seen any highlights of the incidents, so cannot really comment too much on Gordon 'The Scummer' Strachan's comments that Mickey Brown 'targeted' Kevin Thomson at the weekend...
Thomson, just returning from injury, did not last very long after a couple of clashes with Brown - which left Strachan seething: 'the referee deemed it alright to kick somebody in the shin about four feet off the ground and then it was deemed OK to clatter him again.
'That seems to be OK, that. Just target somebody who comes back from an injury and give him a couple of wallops to see how his leg is coming on.'
This, as you would expect, saw Steve Cotterill bite back with him denying that this was his, or Brown's, intention: 'I have never, ever targeted a player on his comeback.
'And I don't think Michael Brown knows Kevin Thomson.'
To be honest knowing Mickey as we do - and from his previous - part of me would not be entirely surprised if he was looking to 'test' Thomson a little, although I do not think - at least I would hope - he would intentionally look to injury anyone.
If Brown had pushed things too far he would have been punished, right? The referee did not punish either tackle with a card so could either have really been that bad?
PLAY UP POMPEY!