Sky Bet League Two – Saturday 17th October 2020, One Call Stadium [Behind Closed Doors]
As supporters I believe we all have a right to have our say on performances, and I also think we have a “line of acceptance” for performance of both the team, and the manager. Yesterday’s 3-1 defeat at home to Bradford certainly saw the team performance dip beyond that for me, the manager – not too far behind.
The voice of reason in my head has to take into consideration the current climate we find ourselves in with covid, morally I wouldn’t want to put anyone out of work – but financially I also wouldn’t want to see us have to make pay-offs to staff if we couldn’t afford to do so. The same voice of reason by the way would have argued about the new team having time – but in my view, they’ve had enough time now to improve and gel.
As for bringing someone in, this time around I don’t think we’d have to pay compensation to a club to get a manager in with at least five candidates currently out of work – a discussion for another time.
Back to yesterday, sorry, it was a very poor error littered performance – highlighted by the fact that our two candidates for man of the match in the cool down show, were a player who got sent off, and a player who played 45 minutes from the bench. It simply wasn’t good enough.
The addition of George Lapslie looked to have FINALLY found what we’ve been lacking – creativity and we started well, but then Marek Stech decided to put on his butter gloves drop a routine catch into his own net and with that, the bubble burst, the boat rocked, the iceburg was hit – however you want to describe it, THAT was the moment it all changed.
The second goal was pathetic defending shape, so much so even the camera man didn’t even notice the Bradford man in acres of space to latch onto a training ground p*** take back heal and powerful place beyond the Stags number one.
Graham Coughlan said for weeks his side needed to go back to basics, and at the break made three changes and switched into a 4-4-2, and for what, ten minutes? It works, fluid football with a purpose, but then it doesn’t lead to a goal, the patience runs out and before you know it, 3-0 Bradford.
OK, we pull it back to 3-1 with Andy Cook but we also see Lapslie sent off for his second booking – no complaints from me, both yellow cards were warranted by the letter of the law.
A 95th minute goal for Oldham at Bolton then puts us in the relegation zone for, correct me if I’m wrong, the first time since we’ve been back in the Football League – and then, to round of a truly miserable Saturday – GC does his post-match late, having clear been ranting and raving at his players, to give, in my view, the same answers as previous weeks leaving me (and judging by social media comments, the majority of fans) without any confidence this woeful start to the season will be turned on its head.
Question – Why, if you’ve been saying we need to go back to basics, don’t you START THE BLOODY GAME in a 4-4-2 and allow the players to be expressive in the way they were second half?
Question – Why leave the most effective striker on the bench week in week out, despite tremendous personal effort to improve during lockdown?
I have more questions which anger wants to ask, but for now – I’ll wait, for me we have to get AT LEAST four points from the next two games, it may be early in the season but we have to REACT and pull away from the relegation zone, because the dressing room becomes toxic, social media becomes (even more) toxic, the players confidence dies and before you know it, it’s December and we’re heading back to the darkness.
The POSITIVE, we have a game Tuesday which we have to prepare for meaning we can’t stew on this unacceptable comedy of errors. We can NOT change it, We can NOT put superglue on Stech’s gloves or guide Bowery’s seemingly cast iron efforts in – We CAN go back to basics Tuesday, making a number of proactive changes, and save ourselves.
Click HERE to read the clubs official match report.
STAGS: Marek Stech | Rollin Menayese, Farrend Rawson (Mal Benning 45), Ryan Sweeney © | Corey O’Keeffe, George Lapslie, James Perch, George Maris (Harry Charsley 45), Stephen McLaughlin | Nicky Maynard (Andy Cook 45), Jordan Bowery
Unused Subs: Aidan Stone, Aaron O’Driscoll, Tyrese Sinclair, Jamie Reid
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