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Olé

Match Report: Usual WBA thrashing owes more to LJ than superiority

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5 minutes ago, Olé said:

Losing comprehensively at West Brom is a regular occurrence for Bristol City, but it is usually to runaway leaders that City can't hope to live with. The Baggies might have gone back top with their one sided victory but today it owed much more to an inept away side, than any real advantage. 

City have lost at the Hawthorns to better West Brom teams over the years, even as recently as last year. It says much about the shambles today that a more average Baggies side than normal could still easily have won by 6 or 7 against visitors setup in catastrophic shape and full of mistakes.

To be clear, City looked like a lower league cup side from a division or two below West Brom, torn to pieces by their own lack of quality: substitutes Diedhiou and Eliasson literally the only technically drilled players to affect the game, on a day where City's players setup defensively and fell apart.

Lee Johnson bears most responsibility, his men have been subpar for weeks now and today they simply curled into a ball and were overrun, 2 defensive midfielders in front of 3 centre backs, a compact largely redundant crowd that could not play out and were easily bypassed by West Brom. 

It was Korey Smith in his first game back and alongside Adam Nagy, who screened a three of Baker, Williams and Wright, but with O'Dowda newly installed at left back, and only Brownhill, Palmer and an isolated Weimann playing with freedom, Johnson's experiment was clearly doomed to failure.

City were already having to hoof it long in the opening exchanges and rely on either Palmer or Brownhill securing possession in front of their headless back seven, and so it was no surprise when the visitors gave it away cheaply and the hosts exploited the disorganised rabble for a 9th minute lead. 

Palmer - continually overrun - won a flick on in midfield, only for Brownhill to lose a 50-50 ball in an attempt to lay it back for Bailey Wright, Diangana in on goal, able to draw Bentley and then back heel for Gibbs to sweep home. In front of City's big away following already things looked one-sided.

City's woeful shape produced little of note as a marooned Weimann chased nothing up front, and it took ten more minutes untll Palmer held up a ball well in midfield and threaded a quick early pass to Brownhill on the edge of the area, who turned and took two touches before firing just wide.   

A further quarter of an hour was required before City would again even come close, wing back Pereira isolated as he collected the ball wide right, firing a quick long ball in to the middle which found Palmer, who hit an early spinning shot from outside the box that was easily held by the keeper.

Yet minutes later it was 2-0 as Palmer was again left isolated by City's compact deep midfield and forced to play out of trouble he surrendered play, Livermore teeing up Diangana, the West Ham loanee tumbling theatrically on the edge of the box, and Matheus Pereira curling home a free kick.

By now an anonymous O'Dowda had gone off injured after falling clumsily diving out the way of a midfield challenge, and with Rowe on West Brom finished the half all over City from both flanks, bypassing the non-existent defensive midfield screening and exploiting isolated away wing backs.

Johnson had set his team up to fail in the first half and reacted at half time with two big changes, throwing on striker Diedhiou and winger Eliasson as City switched to a  4-4-2, withdrawing the careless Wright at the back as well as profligate - but often also poorly supported - Palmer in midfield.

Amazingly City rallied for 5 minutes, albeit their rare and only period of dominance on a depressing night, and still amounting to nothing on the day. The first positive sign on 46 minutes saw Diedhiou stylishly hold up the ball and thread it wide to Eliasson whose cross was diverted for a corner.

Two minutes later City thought they had one back, but Eliasson's slipped short ball inside for Brownhill was adjudged offside even though the flag wasn't spotted and a square ball allowed Williams - still up from a period of pressure - to turn home after a mistake by the keeper, not that it counted. 

A minute later another Eliasson corner in to the middle caused panic and Diedhiou diverted it onto the underside of the bar, Williams almost bundling in. Famara was a rare touch of quality for City and he beat Baggies midfielders in the next exchange as City rallied for another few corners.

But in truth this was a rare spell of danger from an otherwise chaotic away side and the game reverted to the shapeless mess of the first half, as - inevitably - after the hour, West Brom again overran City, twice seizing on mistakes to go clear on goal, both needing goal saving interventions.

With the first away fans already drifting out and against the run of play, City finally found some fluency with 12 remaining, yet again that man Diedhiou winning the ball and spreading it wide from where Eliasson crossed and the substitute striker saw his flashed header deflected for a corner.

Eliasson swept in the resultant corner and West Brom could not clear their lines and at close range Diedhiou deservedly (for himself at least) scrambled home. 2-1 and right in front of the massed away fans the sudden possibly of an improbable push for a point and totally against the run of play.

But City's evening was characterised by sloppy mistakes and in minutes they fell behind further as Bentley cleared his lines to Nagy who misplaced his first time pass straight to Phillips who strode on and had plenty of space to square to Robson-Kanu to finish easily at close range for a 3-1 lead.

By now City's away fans poured out of the Hawthorns, but worse was to come as an already poor shape was badly exposed 5 minutes on as a hopeful punt down City's left was left and sub Furlong reacted the quickest, finding Austin in acres of space to beat Bentley at the second attempt.

4-1 and if anything the scoreline flattered City on the balance of chances. Indeed the rampant hosts would go clear on goal again in injury time as the visitors morale looked shot to pieces, although curiously this was far from the best Baggies side of recent years, City were simply that bad.

Alarm bells may now ring at Ashton Gate. Yes Johnson's men are still well placed for a promotion tilt but added to collapse at Luton last month, City have struggled for form now for weeks and for all the talk of a wide open division, were sadly exposed as abysmally setup and prepared today. 

The worrying conclusion is that constant match to match tinkering clearly seems to exacerbate City's disjointed disorganised week by week showings and this latest experimentation suggests a manager that is trying to be too clever and is affecting consistency and confidence to be cute.

 

Bentley 6 Overrun at times in the second half, may have wanted to do better with at least one of their goals

Wright 4 By no means the only weak defender and tried to play out but misplaced passes too often

Baker 5 Some crucial interventions, pick of our defence, buy gave ball away cheaply punting it forward

Williams 5 Looks classiest of defenders and had a go at set pieces at the other end... but was overrun

O'Dowda 4 Largely anonymous at wing back, often isolated, played percentages few times he got the ball, little fight and then injured avoiding a challenge

Pereira 4 A bit harsh as totally isolated and kept going all game, but wastes about 50% of the possession he has

Nagy 4 Put in a position where really could not influence game, by his own high standards looked a bit overrun and lots of mistakes towards the end

Smith 4 Big game to bring him back for and it showed, didn't really influence with or without the ball. Defensive midfield was a pointless screen WBA simply bypassed

Brownhill 4 Ran around a bit, few nice touches first half, second half you'd barely know he was playing, leadership also not obvious

Palmer 5 Some horrible mistakes but scrapes a 5 as the only one able to hold up or literally do anything with the ball until Diedhiou came on

Weimann 4 Totally let down by the tactics, almost non existent 

 

Rowe 5 Didn't fare any better than the other wing backs

Diedhiou 8 Our best player on the pitch by a mile, the only quality or composure we had - also some belated defensive wins as well

Eliasson 7 The first outlet and nuisance we had, didn't always come off, but made a difference

Nail. On. Head. 
 

The holding midfielders were evidently too deep, meaning Sawyers and Livermore just controlled the game and WBA were first to every 2nd ball. 
 

I thought Korey huffed and puffed- but was this not a better night for a massengo to sit on Sawyers and hassle him? 
 

We have no outlets, and the aimless punt down the line doesn’t work, we have to be better in possession and certainly going forward build some more patterns of play to impose ourselves. 
 

great summary tho, as always. 
onto Saturday 

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Completely correct about the formation. It was a total failure and to think we could try and play it without our first choice wingbacks and our two most suitable centre backs was nonsensical from Johnson. West Brom routinely got behind the back 3 and were very effective at quickly countering us as a result. Wright tried to get stuck in but ultimately he was bypassed easily. Baker was mostly ineffective and panicked whenever he was required to try and play from the back. I remember one occasion where he had been sent up the pitch to win a high ball, but WBA caught it and countered. He was basically in another bloody timezone from where he needed to be and all he could do was jog back! Williams had a poor game and could have even been sent off.

I think 4-3-3 would be the best way to make use of the talent we have in central midfield and be able to put Eliasson in the team, and we played our only good football (ten minutes at the very most) when switching to a back 4, although I couldn’t quite tell if we were playing 4-4-2 or 4-3-3 in that time.

Weimann was isolated and totally ineffective, while Palmer was undisciplined positionally. That decision to become a show pony at the edge of our box was objectively moronic and we were punished for it almost immediately. O’Dowda was a complete liability once again. I honestly do not know what Johnson sees in him.

The way we were set up for this game was one of the worst tactical missteps I have ever witnessed us take and it was a complete embarrassment. 3 at the back needs to be binned. Perhaps we could try it again once more suitable players return but quite frankly I think it’s been a failed experiment and it’s time for Johnson to accept that.

I completely understand that we were up against a team who are of fantastic quality at this level but we came out passive, confused and were given a good hiding as a result. Even at Wigan we started with 3 at the back and were forced to change. I do not understand how many times this has to happen before this flawed system is finally cast aside.

Heard multiple Baggies fans say we had been the poorest side they had seen all season and that they didn’t get how we could be as high as 7th when performing like that. I really hope this defeat is seen as a harsh lesson towards LJ, and that he learns it quickly.

4-3-3; please and thank you.

Edited by Newquay-Red
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5 hours ago, Newquay-Red said:

Completely correct about the formation. It was a total failure and to think we could try and play it without our first choice wingbacks and our two most suitable centre backs was nonsensical from Johnson. West Brom routinely got behind the back 3 and were very effective at quickly countering us as a result. Wright tried to get stuck in but ultimately he was bypassed easily. Baker was mostly ineffective and panicked whenever he was required to try and play from the back. I remember one occasion where he had been sent up the pitch to win a high ball, but WBA caught it and countered. He was basically in another bloody timezone from where he needed to be and all he could do was jog back! Williams had a poor game and could have even been sent off.

I think 4-3-3 would be the best way to make use of the talent we have in central midfield and be able to put Eliasson in the team, and we played our only good football (ten minutes at the very most) when switching to a back 4, although I couldn’t quite tell if we were playing 4-4-2 or 4-3-3 in that time.

Weimann was isolated and totally ineffective, while Palmer was undisciplined positionally. That decision to become a show pony at the edge of our box was objectively moronic and we were punished for it almost immediately. O’Dowda was a complete liability once again. I honestly do not know what Johnson sees in him.

The way we were set up for this game was one of the worst tactical missteps I have ever witnessed us take and it was a complete embarrassment. 3 at the back needs to be binned. Perhaps we could try it again once more suitable players return but quite frankly I think it’s been a failed experiment and it’s time for Johnson to accept that.

I completely understand that we were up against a team who are of fantastic quality at this level but we came out passive, confused and were given a good hiding as a result. Even at Wigan we started with 3 at the back and were forced to change. I do not understand how many times this has to happen before this flawed system is finally cast aside.

Heard multiple Baggies fans say we had been the poorest side they had seen all season and that they didn’t get how we could be as high as 7th when performing like that. I really hope this defeat is seen as a harsh lesson towards LJ, and that he learns it quickly.

4-3-3; please and thank you.

You would think LJ might have grown a pair by now and learnt from previous meddling and his you shall not pass game plan, seems not.

We are as toothless as Joe Jordan.....oh to have him back.....fire in the belly required...too many starting first teamers not pulling their weight they need kicking into touch and made to stay there. At least 3 or 4 changes required Sat and some money spending in the window.

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This result was coming.

We have gathered a good number of points but we have not impressed in most games. Last night’s tactics and selections were all wrong but again exposed our lack of a cutting edge.Apart from the start of the second half their defense had a cigar going.

LJ needs to address this urgently, Fam should have started as should Rowe, for me COD is a liability - flatters to decieve, and looks lightweight.

Dont understand why Han - Noah didn’t start.

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When we start with 8 defensive players, that says a lot about junior and his expectations for the match.

The bloke simply hasn't got a clue what he's doing.

There's the door over there please use it.

Edited by northsomersetred
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Williams had a good game surely. 7 for me. Tactics were a big problem. Weimann incapable of lone role it seems. I can see why LJ has never done that before. Weimann too lightweight, only comfortable out wide, rarely on the shoulder of the last defender in central areas. A better striker should be able to do better in that role.

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LJ is beginning to remind me of those people you meet in various jobs over the years. 

They hold high management positions but you have absolutely no idea why. 

Just get the basics right LJ. For the rest of this week can you get the lads to learn "keeping the ball for more than 2 passes. There's a poppet. 

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I do feel some of the reactions on here are a bit OTT. I'm usually a bit on the glass half empty side but on this occasion I don't think it was quite as abject as many are suggesting.

We did have a few periods - mostly at the beginning of each half - when we did ok. At 2-1 we almost looked like we might have a comeback in us. Two of their goals that killed us off were clearly offside.

Korey, I thought, worked hard and won the ball back a reasonable number of times. Certainly did ok considering it was his first game back. Williams mostly had a good game imo.

I'm not saying it was an ok performance, clearly it wasn't. I hope it makes LJ realise that three at the back with no proper LWB and Baker & Wright as CBs will never work.

Time to get back to basics and put in the players who are in form and stop being so negative in our approach.

Edited by robin_unreliant
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5 minutes ago, northsomersetred said:

When we start with 8 defensive players at home, that says a lot about junior and his expectations for the match.

The bloke simply hasn't got a clue what he's doing.

There's the door over there please use it.

He simply has to set up a team to attack on Saturday 

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As an Albion fan, I am amazed that you think this is an average Albion side and not as good as last years. I am 51 so seen a lot of good, bad and indifferent sides. Having seen nearly every game this season bar one, I can honestly say this is the most enjoyable and exciting side I have watched for many a year.

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36 minutes ago, daored said:

He simply has to set up a team to attack on Saturday 

What with? He’ll most probably drop Fammy, the only striker with goals in him! We’re limp up front and have been for 18 months, losing Afobe has been a massive blow for us!

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1 hour ago, glos old boy said:

You would think LJ might have grown a pair by now and learnt from previous meddling and his you shall not pass game plan, seems not.

We are as toothless as Joe Jordan.....oh to have him back.....fire in the belly required...too many starting first teamers not pulling their weight they need kicking into touch and made to stay there. At least 3 or 4 changes required Sat and some money spending in the window.

That is the problem. Johnson never seems to learn. Constant changing of tactics and personnel has been the hallmark of his time as our Manager. The same mistakes regularly resurface.

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1 minute ago, swanker said:

What with? He’ll most probably drop Fammy, the only striker with goals in him! We’re limp up front and have been for 18 months, losing Afobe has been a massive blow for us!

I accept we’ve not got a number of options up front and basically are choices are Fammy or Weinmann. The loss of Afobe has been bigger then I believe  many of us expected.

However , whoever we play upfront is often isolated, that can be fixed. Eliasson has to start Saturday, whether we try two up two with Rodri alongside either Fam or Weinmann ? We have to get support to our attacking players 
 

 

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Sometimes we just overcomplicate things. 

Many times on Saturday Eliasson could have pulled the ball back for anyone who can kick a ball to whack it towards the goal but, no, he must cross it for someone to head it. 

How many Afobes do we need to just stick some laces through a ball from 18 yards?

Sometimes it's a case of "don't shoot, don't score". 

We're scared and pin everything on our bad luck. 

These are supposedly pros. Why can't they kick a ball from 18 yards when the hard work has already been done by a talented winger?

Edited by CotswoldRed
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1 hour ago, CotswoldRed said:

LJ is beginning to remind me of those people you meet in various jobs over the years. 

They hold high management positions but you have absolutely no idea why. 

Just get the basics right LJ. For the rest of this week can you get the lads to learn "keeping the ball for more than 2 passes. There's a poppet. 

Yeah improving us every year despite best players leaving is awful. Leaves me scratching my head why he’s in the job too

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Thanks @Olé as usual a great report. I'm with @robin_unreliant in thinking it wasn't quite that bad and that individual errors (and linesmen missing offsides) cost us. Without those it could have been a typical City away performance! 

It's easy to criticise LJs selection in hindsight: I'm not suggesting you are @Olé as I don't know what thoughts you had before the game. But I always think the pre-game match thread is an interesting pointer to how we're going to perform. As a rule, when there's a negativity about the line up we do well (think at least two of our recent visits to Fulham) and when there's a positivity about the line up we do badly. Last night was no exception; look back at the first two pages and there's a general feeling that the line up was positive.

I think the fact that Kalas and Moore are still missing played a big part in the decision to add an extra defensive midfielder. He doesn't see them, righty so, as great on the deck and knew that West Brom would play that way, so wanted some extra cover to stop them getting that far. It didn't work. But I understand why he tried it.

Agree with you that Fam's performance deserved a goal. But I'm beginning to get very frustrated with Weimann, not just last night, and not just a lack of service; there were times last night when we were attacking and he still seemed anonymous, and also I'm beginning to wonder just what sort of service he needs. He just looks like he's playing in a different team, or a team of one, all the time.

 

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34 minutes ago, swanker said:

What with? He’ll most probably drop Fammy, the only striker with goals in him! We’re limp up front and have been for 18 months, losing Afobe has been a massive blow for us!

Fam will definitely start on Saturday 

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1 minute ago, RedDave said:

Yeah improving us every year despite best players leaving is awful. Leaves me scratching my head why he’s in the job too

You and I know its not as binary as that. I would completely agree if we were talking about the same group of players year on year, but we're not of course. 

His job is to make the most from the resources he is given. Simple as that. That includes the academy. 

I just don't think he manages to do that. Your only measure is position in the table. Fine, if that's what floats your boat. 

We play disjointed football much if the time, barely manage a competent performance at home and are so far from delivering the basics so often, that you'd be hard pressed to believe the players have met before. I agree at times they play some silky attractive football away, but that's a poor return after years in the job. 

His football is predictable, frustrating and lacking intensity or cohesion. It certainly lacks ideas and entertainment value. 

Each to their own. 

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1 minute ago, CotswoldRed said:

You and I know its not as binary as that. I would completely agree if we were talking about the same group of players year on year, but we're not of course. 

His job is to make the most from the resources he is given. Simple as that. That includes the academy. 

I just don't think he manages to do that. Your only measure is position in the table. Fine, if that's what floats your boat. 

We play disjointed football much if the time, barely manage a competent performance at home and are so far from delivering the basics so often, that you'd be hard pressed to believe the players have met before. I agree at times they play some silky attractive football away, but that's a poor return after years in the job. 

His football is predictable, frustrating and lacking intensity or cohesion. It certainly lacks ideas and entertainment value. 

Each to their own. 

But position in the table is what he, and every manager, is ultimately judged on.

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1 hour ago, robin_unreliant said:

I do feel some of the reactions on here are a bit OTT. I'm usually a bit on the glass half empty side but on this occasion I don't think it was quite as abject as many are suggesting.

We did have a few periods - mostly at the beginning of each half - when we did ok. At 2-1 we almost looked like we might have a comeback in us. Two of their goals that killed us off were clearly offside.

Korey, I thought, worked hard and won the ball back a reasonable number of times. Certainly did ok considering it was his first game back. Williams mostly had a good game imo.

I'm not saying it was an ok performance, clearly it wasn't. I hope it makes LJ realise that three at the back with no proper LWB and Baker & Wright as CBs will never work.

Time to get back to basics and put in the players who are in form and stop being so negative in our approach.

You can't play that formation with 2 holding midfielders, unless your instructions are clearly for the wing back to basically play as outside forwards, as otherwise you leave the attacking players isolated. 

We hasld so many players deep we literally invited our own demise, WBA did not start the game pressing our defense, but as we have so many players deep we are playing 15 to 20 years deeper than we should be, they worked this out within the first 10 minutes and began to advance themselves compressing the game. 

Yes the first 3 goals came from individual errors, but they are directly caused by the tactics as the first 2 are caused by players trying to play too deep, and by the time the third comes about West Brom are playing much higher than they started and pressing with ease. 

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16 minutes ago, CotswoldRed said:

You and I know its not as binary as that. I would completely agree if we were talking about the same group of players year on year, but we're not of course. 

His job is to make the most from the resources he is given. Simple as that. That includes the academy. 

I just don't think he manages to do that. Your only measure is position in the table. Fine, if that's what floats your boat. 

We play disjointed football much if the time, barely manage a competent performance at home and are so far from delivering the basics so often, that you'd be hard pressed to believe the players have met before. I agree at times they play some silky attractive football away, but that's a poor return after years in the job. 

His football is predictable, frustrating and lacking intensity or cohesion. It certainly lacks ideas and entertainment value. 

Each to their own. 

Johnson is not allowed any continuity every season as his best players leave and lots of new ones come in. It’s nearly December and he’s not been able to field his best team due to injuries. He deserves a lot more respect and should be allowed time with a new group of players.  Clearly he’s a very good coach. 

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Core blimey, people lose their shit when we take a bit of a beating! I don't think that was a 4-1 game. We made 3 basic mistakes that lead to their first 3 goals - don't make those mistakes and we draw that game with a decent-ish away, defensive display to a team second in the league.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying we played well. We didn't. And boy would I like us to take it to someone soon. Getting beat 4-1 having a go is more preferable than getting beat 4-1 trying to contain but calm down.

People also saying Johnson doesn't know his best team. I'd agree with that, he needs to figure that out asap. How he doesn't when we've had these players since the summer is a tad frustrating.

For all his deficiencies, Diedhiou needs to start. We need to get Palmer free between the midfield and defensive lines feeding balls in to Weimann and Eliasson. These two can really worry defences. Smith and Nagy dovetail providing a shield/box to box presence. Get full backs overlapping. It sounds basic, so maybe go back to basics!

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Eliasson is the only player in the entire squad who's actually exciting to watch and gets you off your seat. We really do need to find a formation to fit him in and build the team around him as when he isn't playing we look so predictable and non threatening.

The other thing which is so frustrating about this current crop of players is that they almost accept defeat sometimes - Don't get me wrong WB were by far the better team last night but I saw no anger or frustration from any player other than Williams.

On a positive it was great to see Korey back playing (albeit IMO maybe the wrong game to bring him back in) and i'm not his biggest fan but Big Dave played well when he came on but in January he really needs an out and out striker by his side if we are to reach the play offs!

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I’m not a Johnson outer and I’m also not a fan. Because of that I try to stick with the facts that year on year it gets better and I can’t argue with that. 
 

But his ability to strengthen my gut feeling that at the end of the day he probably isn’t up for the next level never really goes away. As soon as I saw that team Selection last night my heart sank. It made no sense at all and just reinforces those concerns.

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Decent account of the match. No enough made though of the 3rd WBA goal which was clearly offside. Having just got back in the game who knows what might have happened had the goal been rightly disallowed. 
Not advocating VAR in our league but with it the 4th goal also would not have counted. 
I would drop Nagy (perhaps Pack wasn’t so rubbish after all?) and Palmer (better than Patterson?) until they start looking interested. Rowe and Pereira clearly aren’t wing backs so need to bin the 3 centre backs until JD and Hunt are available.

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Hitting it long to Weimann completely negates his strengths- no surprise he didn't do much.

I was hoping that the solid midfield and central defensive base behind might have given Palmer scope to play with some real freedom and link with Weimann- clearly not!

O'Dowda in the past has often been halfway okay on the defensive side- no more it seems!

Something about playing with 3 at the back, doesn't do it for me- certainly not with the current personnel.

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Seen a few posts saying that Massengo should have played last night to sit him on Sawyers. Did you actually see how deep Sawyers was last night?! He was controlling the game from a quarterback role, so if anyone was to disrupt that it should have been the ‘anonymous’ Brownhill 😏

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We have assembled a team of average ability that are easy to manage because they have no personality or character. 

In the past we got by by sheer hard work and effort and by not making stupid mistakes

We have no leaders and nobody that can do something different to excite the crowd

Casey Palmer reminds me of Tomlin due to his attitude pre and post fat contract.

We have no strikers who can change a game. Famy is a huge man playing like a midget. He wins so little in the air and when he does he gives away a foul. His first touch is awful. What happened to the bloke that first arrived who was fast and could take players on. Abraham was far better at holding the ball up.

Eliasson is our only winger but as with the Forest game he is too often aiming at well marked static forwards who are outnumbered because our midfield do not get in the box quickly enough to support

For me our current form is typical of what we got used to during the long winless runs under streaky Johnson. By pure luck we are picking up some points.

Last night the West Brom coach at 4.1 up was still connected to, and helping his team where LJ prefers to hold a moan session at the fourth official.

For me we have to accept that technically most teams are better than us and adapt our game to stop playing 70% in our own half, and start the heavy pressing game again

We must sign at least 1 striker in January and we must get Morrell back to give us something different in midfield

I will not be critical of our Chairman. Without him I hate to think where we would be, however I think the time for patience with LJ must stop and he must be stopped from constantly changing the team. It is not so much about results but about the team performance. 

Lets me honest, it is pretty boring at Ashton Gate just now.

 

 

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I fully expected us to get our arses handed to us on a plate last night and predicted to @oldstandrobin we'd lose 5-1 to his prediction of 3-1. The Forest game Saturday totally underwhelmed me and exposed just how poor we really can be.

I dread to think of the reaction should we ship an early goal this weekend. 

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2 minutes ago, CyderInACan said:

I fully expected us to get our arses handed to us on a plate last night and predicted to @oldstandrobin we'd lose 5-1 to his prediction of 3-1. The Forest game Saturday totally underwhelmed me and exposed just how poor we really can be.

I dread to think of the reaction should we ship an early goal this weekend. 

Wouldn't surprise me, they're a struggling team that we always have troubles trying to unlock and we're low on confidence 

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The result actually seems worse than it is. As other posters have highlighted, 3 mistakes led to 3 goals. West Brom we’re the better team and deserved to win. They outplayed us, outfought us and that’s why they are top of the league. We’ve lost 4-1 to a team who are probably going to win the league or at least get promoted. 
 

A footballing lesson and a level we need to work towards if we are to get to the prem. 

on paper, the line up looked half decent. Especially with Smith and Nagy sat in front of the back 3. I feel sorry for Weimann. He works his bollocks off every game for very little reward. 

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We are an average, predictable Championship team. It feels like LJ has been penned in by his experiences in this division, trying to guard against them rather than use them to overcome the failures and develop an exciting fresh identity. 

I think a lot of the frustration with him is the hope (driven by the club and media narrative around him) that he will be one of those intelligent young coaches that comes up with bold visions and new ways of playing - but to me he seems too insecure to lead in that way.

He’s more like the annoying new manager that’s come out of business school than the maverick entrepreneur that’s got a passionate vision. 

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16 minutes ago, Red white and red said:

The result actually seems worse than it is. As other posters have highlighted, 3 mistakes led to 3 goals. West Brom we’re the better team and deserved to win. They outplayed us, outfought us and that’s why they are top of the league. We’ve lost 4-1 to a team who are probably going to win the league or at least get promoted. 
 

A footballing lesson and a level we need to work towards if we are to get to the prem. 

on paper, the line up looked half decent. Especially with Smith and Nagy sat in front of the back 3. I feel sorry for Weimann. He works his bollocks off every game for very little reward

Got little support either.

Lone striker is fine but they must be supported- if you don't do that, then they become pointless- especially someone with the skill set and energy of Weimann! Complete waste.

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The worrying thing for me is in the last 2 games we have had 1 shot on target and lost a game 4-1.

You cloud read this as clinical maybe when we make chances but we all know that's not the case so we're not making enough chances and we're not finishing them.

This is going to be tough to turn around. 

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1 hour ago, RedDave said:

Yeah improving us every year despite best players leaving is awful. Leaves me scratching my head why he’s in the job too

Personally I think this is a weak excuse - we have arguably strengthened for nearly every leaver.

Nagy (not on last night admittedly) is better than Pack.

Kalas is better than Flint by a country mile

Williams is a good replacement for Webster (not the same at all but not enough reason to start conceding 4 goals - remember the start of the years vs Palace with Webster)??

Afobe is better than Reid

Dasilva will be as good as Bryan

If you argued injuries were our problem I would partially agree (but you would still hope we would have a preferred system rather than a weekly formation lottery)?

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From the start, the lack of any outlet up front was obvious, meaning that we were always on the back foot. Smith and Nagy were never going to last more than 60 minutes, so a huge risk playing both. As on Saturday, Elliasson was briefly effective, but once West Brom focussed on stopping him getting the ball onto his left foot, he too became ineffective. 

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3 hours ago, glos old boy said:

Drop Nagy, Palmer, ODowda to bench at best and recall and play and start Morrell, Fammy, Eliasson.........oh and ATTACK

Disagree with Nagy, his only poor game and hopefully a one off

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3 hours ago, CotswoldRed said:

LJ is beginning to remind me of those people you meet in various jobs over the years. 

They hold high management positions but you have absolutely no idea why. 

Just get the basics right LJ. For the rest of this week can you get the lads to learn "keeping the ball for more than 2 passes. There's a poppet. 

Bit like Jen in the IT crowd?  Out of his depth possibly?

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30 minutes ago, Dullmoan Tone said:

Personally I think this is a weak excuse - we have arguably strengthened for nearly every leaver.

Nagy (not on last night admittedly) is better than Pack.

Kalas is better than Flint by a country mile

Williams is a good replacement for Webster (not the same at all but not enough reason to start conceding 4 goals - remember the start of the years vs Palace with Webster)??

Afobe is better than Reid

Dasilva will be as good as Bryan

If you argued injuries were our problem I would partially agree (but you would still hope we would have a preferred system rather than a weekly formation lottery)?

Exactly.......Adopt a distinct set of tactics and stick to them. We appear to have no leaders or identity.  The constant tinkering and personnel changes seem to indicate a lack of confidence and self belief, which may transmit itself to the team on occasions?  To introduce Korey in a match like this was dumb, when a competitive Massengo would have beeen preferable.  Also not to use Fammy and Eliasson until half time was equally misguided.  Diedhiou contributes a lot defensively. as well as being a nuisance upfront?  LJ needs to get a grip. He needs to stop chopping and changing and play a settled side (injuries allowing)...he also needs to stop talking a good game, and prove his worth in actions, not blather.  PS And FFS PLEASE DO NOT .........play Bailey Wright as a Central defender, he is NOT  up to it.  PPS Thankyou Ole for an excellent analysis as always!

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Such a strange feeling after the game. I wasn't really gutted, kinda just thought "fair enough" 

I think the build up of poor performances and mildly lucky results have prepared me for it. And then the fact the opposition is top of the league. Hope the players are told to look forward not back after that 

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2 hours ago, Northern Red said:

But position in the table is what he, and every manager, is ultimately judged on.

Maybe, but I think you'll find the fans judge him on more than that.

We know that when we stagnate in this division, with little hope of promotion, and the entertainment value becomes increasingly poor, our crowds drop.

That's where we're heading now, and when the crowds decrease SL will (or should) want to know why and what his coach intends to do about it.

It's not all about league position, the club exists not only to represent the local population on a national stage but to provide them with regular entertainment too.

That's not been the case for too long now. LJ needs to pull his socks up imo., and give the fans something to shout about, and quickly.

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25 minutes ago, Nogbad the Bad said:

Maybe, but I think you'll find the fans judge him on more than that.

We know that when we stagnate in this division, with little hope of promotion, and the entertainment value becomes increasingly poor, our crowds drop.

That's where we're heading now, and when the crowds decrease SL will (or should) want to know why and what his coach intends to do about it.

It's not all about league position, the club exists not only to represent the local population on a national stage but to provide them with regular entertainment too.

That's not been the case for too long now. LJ needs to pull his socks up imo., and give the fans something to shout about, and quickly.

Isn't that just an evolution into a typical Championship side though? We've grown a lot as a club in the last few years- and we're still growing, but top 2 was always unlikely this year.

We're not in League One anymore- I am hopeful of a playoff push, but the point still stands.

That's not to say I'm necessarily happy with it right now but...

Edited by Mr Popodopolous
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5 hours ago, Northern Red said:

But position in the table is what he, and every manager, is ultimately judged on.

True, but what's the point of the forum for some?

Question.. Are we higher in the table than last year. Answer.. YES, so every criticism is invalid. 

Or so it would seem. 

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City's abysmal performance aside, there were some WBA players who certianly caught the eye. Wow - what a player Sawyers is, makes everything look pretty effortless and I can't remember him losing the ball once. 

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