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Date Posted: Monday, March 20, 11:47:39am
Author: GTS
Author Host/IP: NoHost /
Subject: My observations on saturday and the future !

Obviously I , and imagine all of us, found Saturday extremely disappointing and I think most things have been discussed and analysed already, but I thought that would just make a couple of observations now the dust has settled a bit. I doubt I’ll say anything particularly new but anyway….

I guess the first and most important thing is not to panic and decide it’s all over, we are still in with a good chance of making the play offs, we are a good team, one point away with 24 to play for. I think one of the big problems we have is that our game is totally based on fast, accurate, incisive passing around the whole team. If our midfield is say 5-10% off its’ game, then passes go slightly awry and we start looking a bit average. Where I sit in EE block I’m on the edge of the area , and in the first half I think there were 6 or 7 “killer” passes into the Box that were 6 inches off, behind or in front of the recipient, which if accurate would have set up good chances. It doesn’t ultimately help, but it shows how small the margins are. I think where we suffer more though is we have no real ability to play badly and grind out the 1-0, which maybe Leeds and Reading etc can. We clearly don’t have the personnel for that, I’m not sure that not spending in the poor transfer window is so much the problem, because I think even with unlimited funds, SJ is just not going to buy those sort of players. He wants to play a certain way, which on the whole we all love, and I think for better or for worse we will never have that “Plan B”.

On the subject of panicking, and I’m saying this as someone who thinks SJ is the best thing that has happened to our club for years, I do think he panicked too early on Saturday. At half time we were only 1-0 and still very much in the game, whilst bringing on Cyriac was a good idea as he offers something a little different, I think one of the identikit front three could have made way. Taking Macdonald off and going all gung-ho so early just disrupted our formation, stopped Johanssen from making forward runs and, most importantly, left our defence ( such as it is !!) horribly exposed. Clearly in the first ten minutes of the second half the whole team looked confused which led to the second goal. Very odd decision really, unless Macdonald was injured, then I would apologise, although even then , Madl might have been a better swap which would have kept the formation intact. To be honest the other two subs were a bit odd as well, whilst the full backs didn’t play well, I’m not sure replacing two full backs with two other full backs does a great deal when you are chasing the game…yes I know Odoi scored, but overall….

I also think one of the big losses in the last few weeks, which doesn’t seem to get mentioned much, has been Piazon. He can play anywhere in midfield, wide or up front, which is so important with our small squad. I know he is not prolific as a striker, but he is a superb passer of the ball. He makes himself available as an outlet all the time, has good close control so rarely losses the ball under pressure, and has a great work rate getting up and down the pitch, helping out in defence and at set pieces. I think, funny enough, we miss him more than any of our injured players.

Anyway hopefully he will be fit for Rotherham, the team would have , at least mentally, rested and we will get back on track. As I post quite often, we are in with a chance until we need four points from the last game, so let’s keep the faith and see what we can achieve.


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