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Random thoughts of a pissed off fan


1960maaan
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I typed out a few things on various platforms last night, but deleted all of them. They ended up being a bit random and bitter.
So I'll try and organise my thoughts a little better this morning.

Firstly I thought we did ok first half, touch and go whether we deserved 1-0 , but not a massively undeserved scoreline.
      Scott was excellent (apart from that miss), and the midfield hadn't looked as weak as I'd expected. Defence looked good, Baker was old school Baker (Johnson looked terrified) and we were well in the game with noses in front.

Not sure what was said at half time, you expect them to calm out quickly, but it looked like we had been told to try and hold what we had.  We never got any foothold in the game, no forward momentum and definitely no control.
I hate that we bring everyone back at corners, at one stage it allowed all 10 Forest outfield players in the final 3rd, the keeper acting sweeper near half way. When we cleared it comes straight back, leave someone anyone up front, just to keep defender honest and give us chance to get out.
We have, for ages , defended too deep at the end of games. Now this has been, pressure from teams chasing a goal, fatigue meaning players drop deeper to cover plus the simple fact we cannot put a series of passes together to keep the ball and so see the game out. Last night that started from the kick off. 
Even if you play on the break (which I'm not sure we do by design, more being dominated constantly) , you need to be able to look after the ball. Wells made some good runs and that chip (I actually mentioned there was a chance 5 minutes before) shows his eye for goal, but we didn't have the control to get a decent pass away. Martin had got some good headers and flicks in but he looked like he was struggling a bit so I thought HNM was a good move. Though I expected Scott might have been first because of Nige love of Martin. Forests control and dominance made it hard for Masengo to make a real impact, though he did some nice twists & turns and nicked the ball a few times. Again because we were so deep, space was rare so Scott had become a little less effective, plus cramp , Palmer turned out to be equally ineffective. 
Still we were defending well, if too deep ( I may have mentioned that before) and Forest seemed to be getting desperate with long shots. The change of Wells for COD was strange, yet not so. I though Nhaki had a good game, and if anyone was liable to nick a goal it would be him. Then again, he had lost his footing a few times, looked frustrated, and more to the point service had all but dried up as we couldn't get decent possession. Now I can see the reasoning, COD is a good runner & Pacey . Get it to feet and he could have caused their defence real problems . It just didn't happen. 
One thing I will say, it was not a nailed on Pen. I've seen them given, but on first view it looked like he went down easily. The Ref seemed to point at the ball, so I guess he thought the defender got a touch, but also he didn't book Scott so I imagine he thought there was contact.

TBF Baker had been excellent, but I sat down as soon as Baker started to dive in. I didn't need the Ref to give the decision, even from 80 yards away it was obvious. Not only that, I was waiting for the 2nd goal. Defend like that, after chasing shadows for 45 minutes and you just just can't change your mindset and get out on the front foot. I wanted to be seeing ALL the touchline staff screaming to get out as soon as we started defending from our own area. 

We had started to see signs of improvement, and I do think in many ways we are better than we have been previously. But sadly the one thing, the main problem is exactly the same as it's been for over 2 years. We don't keep the ball, we don't control games and so we can't defend leads. Now IMO, it's partly mindset, though Pearson had started to address that with James & King. Partly nerves and partly the ability to pass to our own players in space and a big part of that, is lack of movement.
And there is the catch 22.
Because we lack movement we can't find the easy pass.
Because we can't find the easy pass we tend to go longer.
Because we go longer, we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more, we end up chasing the ball more.
Because we chase the ball more, we tire quicker.
Because we tire quicker we lack movement repeat to fade.

It's not a new thing, we suffered the same under Johnson, we suffered the same under Holden and , so far, Pearson has struggled to change it. Maybe having Williams fit might make a difference, but I don't think it's down to players, totally. It's coaching and mindset , as soon as a player passes the ball it seems like that's his job done. What we need is for that player to just move a yard to give the option of the ball back, while others do the same. We are static.
When a Forest player was fronted up, and we never really got tight too often, he had an option. If there wasn't one there, someone would make a run. Again they were streets ahead of us on the ball. The 2nd half was Bournemouth levels of dominance and if Forest had their levels of quality , Forest would have won much earlier. 
Make no mistake, this is a big, big job. One that, sadly may be too big for Pearson.

I apologise for the ramble, but at least it's off my chest now. I shall now pretend I don't like football for the next few days.

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It was one of those nights when after a few minutes I thought we have too many players out of touch, as the game went on my fears were confirmed.

In no particular order

Martin, largely anonymous, did he ever hold the ball up and pass to one of our players?

Weimann, couldn’t trap a bag of cement, why does he continually point at random places?

O’Dowda, has he ever played as a lone striker? Even in training?

Palmer, came on the pitch, then disappeared.

I can see a glimmer of a core of capable players, strangely despite the loss I thought the defence did OK.

Bottom line is until January we are going to rely on some players who are simply OK at times and poor to very poor at others.

As to the manager, he is well aware of our shortcomings, and is doing his best but unfortunately you can’t make a silk purse etc, etc.

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1 hour ago, 1960maaan said:

the keeper acting sweeper near half way

My dad - who's watched about 10 football matches in his life - he spotted Samba basically playing sweeper. Dad was calling for us to push up and pressure him, or take shots such as Wells did, or run at him, anything to put him off and push him back onto his line. As dad said, not doing that essentially gave them an extra defender.

Obviously subbing off all of our strikers did nothing to improve it, and so they were able to start attacks from very advanced positions. 

I agree with pretty much everything else you say, just thought I'd expand on that one point.

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1 hour ago, 1960maaan said:

I typed out a few things on various platforms last night, but deleted all of them. They ended up being a bit random and bitter.
So I'll try and organise my thoughts a little better this morning.

Firstly I thought we did ok first half, touch and go whether we deserved 1-0 , but not a massively undeserved scoreline.
      Scott was excellent (apart from that miss), and the midfield hadn't looked as weak as I'd expected. Defence looked good, Baker was old school Baker (Johnson looked terrified) and we were well in the game with noses in front.

Not sure what was said at half time, you expect them to calm out quickly, but it looked like we had been told to try and hold what we had.  We never got any foothold in the game, no forward momentum and definitely no control.
I hate that we bring everyone back at corners, at one stage it allowed all 10 Forest outfield players in the final 3rd, the keeper acting sweeper near half way. When we cleared it comes straight back, leave someone anyone up front, just to keep defender honest and give us chance to get out.
We have, for ages , defended too deep at the end of games. Now this has been, pressure from teams chasing a goal, fatigue meaning players drop deeper to cover plus the simple fact we cannot put a series of passes together to keep the ball and so see the game out. Last night that started from the kick off. 
Even if you play on the break (which I'm not sure we do by design, more being dominated constantly) , you need to be able to look after the ball. Wells made some good runs and that chip (I actually mentioned there was a chance 5 minutes before) shows his eye for goal, but we didn't have the control to get a decent pass away. Martin had got some good headers and flicks in but he looked like he was struggling a bit so I thought HNM was a good move. Though I expected Scott might have been first because of Nige love of Martin. Forests control and dominance made it hard for Masengo to make a real impact, though he did some nice twists & turns and nicked the ball a few times. Again because we were so deep, space was rare so Scott had become a little less effective, plus cramp , Palmer turned out to be equally ineffective. 
Still we were defending well, if too deep ( I may have mentioned that before) and Forest seemed to be getting desperate with long shots. The change of Wells for COD was strange, yet not so. I though Nhaki had a good game, and if anyone was liable to nick a goal it would be him. Then again, he had lost his footing a few times, looked frustrated, and more to the point service had all but dried up as we couldn't get decent possession. Now I can see the reasoning, COD is a good runner & Pacey . Get it to feet and he could have caused their defence real problems . It just didn't happen. 
One thing I will say, it was not a nailed on Pen. I've seen them given, but on first view it looked like he went down easily. The Ref seemed to point at the ball, so I guess he thought the defender got a touch, but also he didn't book Scott so I imagine he thought there was contact.

TBF Baker had been excellent, but I sat down as soon as Baker started to dive in. I didn't need the Ref to give the decision, even from 80 yards away it was obvious. Not only that, I was waiting for the 2nd goal. Defend like that, after chasing shadows for 45 minutes and you just just can't change your mindset and get out on the front foot. I wanted to be seeing ALL the touchline staff screaming to get out as soon as we started defending from our own area. 

We had started to see signs of improvement, and I do think in many ways we are better than we have been previously. But sadly the one thing, the main problem is exactly the same as it's been for over 2 years. We don't keep the ball, we don't control games and so we can't defend leads. Now IMO, it's partly mindset, though Pearson had started to address that with James & King. Partly nerves and partly the ability to pass to our own players in space and a big part of that, is lack of movement.
And there is the catch 22.
Because we lack movement we can't find the easy pass.
Because we can't find the easy pass we tend to go longer.
Because we go longer, we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more, we end up chasing the ball more.
Because we chase the ball more, we tire quicker.
Because we tire quicker we lack movement repeat to fade.

It's not a new thing, we suffered the same under Johnson, we suffered the same under Holden and , so far, Pearson has struggled to change it. Maybe having Williams fit might make a difference, but I don't think it's down to players, totally. It's coaching and mindset , as soon as a player passes the ball it seems like that's his job done. What we need is for that player to just move a yard to give the option of the ball back, while others do the same. We are static.
When a Forest player was fronted up, and we never really got tight too often, he had an option. If there wasn't one there, someone would make a run. Again they were streets ahead of us on the ball. The 2nd half was Bournemouth levels of dominance and if Forest had their levels of quality , Forest would have won much earlier. 
Make no mistake, this is a big, big job. One that, sadly may be too big for Pearson.

I apologise for the ramble, but at least it's off my chest now. I shall now pretend I don't like football for the next few days.

 

Great post and I agree throughout.

Like you, I was going to post last night, but held fire as I would've sounded too angry and not thoughtful enough.

Having to drive back through a  monsoon, encountering a flooded road and then thick fog on the alternative route, didn't exactly improve my mood going home.  I just made myself a consolation corned beef sandwich when I finally arrived back, ate it, then went to bed.

I hate pointing the finger at individuals when there were collective failures, but I've got to wonder if - when we seem to make the same mistakes over and over - Simpson and Downing are the coaches NP needs working one-to-one with the players. We don't seem to have excelled since they've been at the club. I don't think we have awful players. Many are midtable fodder with the odd gem among them, but they underperform and seem wedded to an over-cautious, slow and defensive mindset. We invite pressure - and every ****** visiting AG is happy to provide that. 

 

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29 minutes ago, Countryfile said:

It was one of those nights when after a few minutes I thought we have too many players out of touch, as the game went on my fears were confirmed.

In no particular order

Martin, largely anonymous, did he ever hold the ball up and pass to one of our players?
TBF he did get some decent flicks & work his defender. Had a hand in the goal. 2nd half struggled though.

Weimann, couldn’t trap a bag of cement, why does he continually point at random places?
Looked like he was being used as a stop gap or filler. 2nd half ran around trying to cover holes andthe one break held onto the ball rather than feed in Scott. 

O’Dowda, has he ever played as a lone striker? Even in training?
I can sort of understand it. Fresh legs & pace, plus he can go past players one on one

Palmer, came on the pitch, then disappeared.
We needed a ball winner, a harrier, we didn't have one. Vyner should have been on the bench, Palmer did very little though.

I can see a glimmer of a core of capable players, strangely despite the loss I thought the defence did OK.

Bottom line is until January we are going to rely on some players who are simply OK at times and poor to very poor at others.

As to the manager, he is well aware of our shortcomings, and is doing his best but unfortunately you can’t make a silk purse etc, etc.

I would be surprised if we did much, if any business in Jan. Unless we are in danger, or near top 6 ( 🤪 )

As I said it's not who we play, but how we play. Not like conceding possession is anew thing.

 

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3 minutes ago, Red-Robbo said:

seem wedded to an over-cautious, slow and defensive mindset

The back line play far too deep. As Fevs said , we have some pace in the back line, we could afford to push 10 yards which would also make it easier for the midfield.

11 minutes ago, ExiledAjax said:

he spotted Samba basically playing sweeper. Dad was calling for us to push up and pressure him, or take shots such as Wells did, or run at him, anything to put him off and push him back onto his line. As dad said, not doing that essentially gave them an extra defender.

5 minutes before Wells attempt I mentioned it to my mate. I'd had a go on a Sunday morning from opponents goal kick, missed by 10 yards and even then it dribbled over the byline 🤣

Because we didn't get control of the ball quickly, and because all 11 players were basically on our 6 yard line, he was allowed to take liberties. Nhaki's effort was brilliant and unlucky, but with no one outside of 20 yards from our box there was no pressure on them to defend from their corners or even attacks. 
That is on Pearson. Tiredness and nerves ok, but that is simple setting up for corners.

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The squad lacks leaders, why else do we have the Goalkeeper wearing the ******* Captains armband? If there was one thing I would implore Nige to do it’s ******* sign somebody who will go out there and make sure the other 10 blokes are putting into practice what you’ve told them to do. They don’t even have to be that good themselves, just a keen and sometimes nasty bastard that hates losing on a Saturday and will give anyone who is endangering his win bonus a right sort out!!

Edited by Numero Uno
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2 hours ago, 1960maaan said:

I typed out a few things on various platforms last night, but deleted all of them. They ended up being a bit random and bitter.
So I'll try and organise my thoughts a little better this morning.

Firstly I thought we did ok first half, touch and go whether we deserved 1-0 , but not a massively undeserved scoreline.
      Scott was excellent (apart from that miss), and the midfield hadn't looked as weak as I'd expected. Defence looked good, Baker was old school Baker (Johnson looked terrified) and we were well in the game with noses in front.

Not sure what was said at half time, you expect them to calm out quickly, but it looked like we had been told to try and hold what we had.  We never got any foothold in the game, no forward momentum and definitely no control.
I hate that we bring everyone back at corners, at one stage it allowed all 10 Forest outfield players in the final 3rd, the keeper acting sweeper near half way. When we cleared it comes straight back, leave someone anyone up front, just to keep defender honest and give us chance to get out.
We have, for ages , defended too deep at the end of games. Now this has been, pressure from teams chasing a goal, fatigue meaning players drop deeper to cover plus the simple fact we cannot put a series of passes together to keep the ball and so see the game out. Last night that started from the kick off. 
Even if you play on the break (which I'm not sure we do by design, more being dominated constantly) , you need to be able to look after the ball. Wells made some good runs and that chip (I actually mentioned there was a chance 5 minutes before) shows his eye for goal, but we didn't have the control to get a decent pass away. Martin had got some good headers and flicks in but he looked like he was struggling a bit so I thought HNM was a good move. Though I expected Scott might have been first because of Nige love of Martin. Forests control and dominance made it hard for Masengo to make a real impact, though he did some nice twists & turns and nicked the ball a few times. Again because we were so deep, space was rare so Scott had become a little less effective, plus cramp , Palmer turned out to be equally ineffective. 
Still we were defending well, if too deep ( I may have mentioned that before) and Forest seemed to be getting desperate with long shots. The change of Wells for COD was strange, yet not so. I though Nhaki had a good game, and if anyone was liable to nick a goal it would be him. Then again, he had lost his footing a few times, looked frustrated, and more to the point service had all but dried up as we couldn't get decent possession. Now I can see the reasoning, COD is a good runner & Pacey . Get it to feet and he could have caused their defence real problems . It just didn't happen. 
One thing I will say, it was not a nailed on Pen. I've seen them given, but on first view it looked like he went down easily. The Ref seemed to point at the ball, so I guess he thought the defender got a touch, but also he didn't book Scott so I imagine he thought there was contact.

TBF Baker had been excellent, but I sat down as soon as Baker started to dive in. I didn't need the Ref to give the decision, even from 80 yards away it was obvious. Not only that, I was waiting for the 2nd goal. Defend like that, after chasing shadows for 45 minutes and you just just can't change your mindset and get out on the front foot. I wanted to be seeing ALL the touchline staff screaming to get out as soon as we started defending from our own area. 

We had started to see signs of improvement, and I do think in many ways we are better than we have been previously. But sadly the one thing, the main problem is exactly the same as it's been for over 2 years. We don't keep the ball, we don't control games and so we can't defend leads. Now IMO, it's partly mindset, though Pearson had started to address that with James & King. Partly nerves and partly the ability to pass to our own players in space and a big part of that, is lack of movement.
And there is the catch 22.
Because we lack movement we can't find the easy pass.
Because we can't find the easy pass we tend to go longer.
Because we go longer, we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more, we end up chasing the ball more.
Because we chase the ball more, we tire quicker.
Because we tire quicker we lack movement repeat to fade.

It's not a new thing, we suffered the same under Johnson, we suffered the same under Holden and , so far, Pearson has struggled to change it. Maybe having Williams fit might make a difference, but I don't think it's down to players, totally. It's coaching and mindset , as soon as a player passes the ball it seems like that's his job done. What we need is for that player to just move a yard to give the option of the ball back, while others do the same. We are static.
When a Forest player was fronted up, and we never really got tight too often, he had an option. If there wasn't one there, someone would make a run. Again they were streets ahead of us on the ball. The 2nd half was Bournemouth levels of dominance and if Forest had their levels of quality , Forest would have won much earlier. 
Make no mistake, this is a big, big job. One that, sadly may be too big for Pearson.

I apologise for the ramble, but at least it's off my chest now. I shall now pretend I don't like football for the next few days.

Certainly not a ramble - well considered and accurate in my view.

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Yep, pretty much what I thought for a very long time. We’ve been going down this path of dropping too deep for the last 3 or 4 years. It’s nothing new.

Also lack of movement in the team’s play has been a consistent problem since the “golden 6 month era” of August 2017 to December 31st 2018!!!

We’ve had these issues and the managers Johnson, Holden and Pearson plus their coaching teams appear to have been unable to resolve it with the squad of players at their disposal.

Listen, I’m not totally convinced with a lot of Pearson’s decisions at times, But he knows this is a shitshow of a mess and squad. He’s struggling. He can see the good and bad in this squad. He has no money to play with (wages and fees) because of the clubs compliance with FFP. We all seem to temporarily forget this. We all thought we’ve got a decent squad. In fact it seems with the evidence of performance of the last 3 seasons and 3 management teams, guess what? We ain’t.

We’ve got a half decent squad, the other half appear weaker in terms of their application. Some are technically decent, but their football intelligence seems sadly lacking. Some might come good in other teams, but at the moment we’re collectively crap.

I thought we competed better yesterday, should have at least deserved a draw. Forest did look to get frustrated and start taken random pot shots from distance. But we caved in with a lack of confidence and  type of player movement and game intelligence to move us up the field. Instead we desperately resort to a hoof up the field to the opposition and then run back to the edge of our own box to try some last ditch defending.

Interestingly, O’Driscoll mantra was to coach the players to a point where they didn’t have to be coached on every bit of the game - they took responsibility, read the game, adapted accordingly, make good decisions. Pearson has stated the same. The players taking ownership.

I actually think Pearson may end up doing the dirty work that on reflection O’Driscoll had to do with the end of the McGuiness era. (Or should we say it was really the end of the Gary Johnson era. Yes GJ did a great job with this club, but for me lost way ending up with a bloated squad of journeymen and the club with no plan.) O’Driscoll games were often dull (City home defeat to Sheff U horror show springs to mind?) but in hindsight he got rid of a load of deadwood, integrated more young players, and supplied players who played a key role in our rising again like Pack, Fielding, Flint, JET, got the wage bill down and the decks were cleared for the club to recruit again with a focus - even though it was with a different gaffer, Cotts. 

I would have liked to have seen Pearson here 3 or 4 years earlier. Is he going to succeed? Who knows? But I think his task is to strip out the mess that the club is at the moment. He knows that we have a squad without the character to be competing consistently. Judging by his main young signings at this time, Atkinson and Tanner, they seem promising and are showing more character, courage and passion in the short few games here this season than the likes of Palmer and O’Dowda have in all the time they’ve been here. True, on their day, Palmer and O’Dowda have ability and can do some great things. Except they don’t often have many “on their days”. 

Steve Lansdown has been great at investing in the infrastructure of the club. But he has made poor decisions in recruiting and entrusting people with the footballing direction of the club. I genuinely hope that getting Nige in will at least get us to turn the corner. I am genuinely concerned that although a leftfield progressive up and coming type of coach is an attractive proposition for the future (i.e. Cooper, Martin, etc.), the present situation is not ideal with the lack of funds and playing personnel currently with this squad. Swansea’s philosophy has been set up to take such coaches for the last 12 years or so, Forest generally has a better balanced group of players that were underperforming.

It’s going to be a painful ride at times, and although I worry about the task Nige is facing, I do still think he is the right type of figure to get things changed for the better.

However... if things still look alarmingly bleak by Xmas and a need change was looking increasingly likely, what do people think should happen and who would you see as a realistic name/type of manager to take over the reigns? This isn’t knocking Nige, who I’ve stated I want to turn it around, but genuinely interested to hear peoples opinions.

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3 hours ago, 1960maaan said:

Because we didn't get control of the ball quickly, and because all 11 players were basically on our 6 yard line, he was allowed to take liberties. Nhaki's effort was brilliant and unlucky, but with no one outside of 20 yards from our box there was no pressure on them to defend from their corners or even attacks. 
That is on Pearson. Tiredness and nerves ok, but that is simple setting up for corners.

Yeh, others like yourself and Fevs have covered the finer tactical points, but from where I was (South Stand, row 2, just left of the goal) it was a pretty clear issue that I felt should have been solved.

Also, from there it was a pretty blatant penalty on Scott in the 1st half. Real shame that wasn't given.

I called Massengo for Martin at HT as I felt that Martin was puffing and Massengo, Scott and James could trouble them. It's a shame that trio got only 11 minutes together as I thought there was something there.

Personally I didn't think that Palmer and COD were what we needed. I'd have likely used one of Pring or Bakinson to shore up the midfield and left Wells on to retain at least some pressure on their defence and Samba. However, I accept that this would be just 2 subs, and I don't know how we are managing fitness. When COD came on I thought Weimann might move up top (and by the way he was gesticulating to the bench as COD came on he thought so as well) but instead he stayed wide and we just lost any impetus going forward. COD dropped too deep, Palmer did whatever it is Palmer does, and every push forwards was just snuffed out before we reached their box.

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Some of these players are on over £1m per year and all they seem to do is turn up. There seems little fight, commitment or passion to me and few of them are worth the money they are being paid.  Losing games of football doesn't seem to bother them as they happily take their £20k per week, win, lose or draw.  I didn't think they were such a bad bunch at first, but It's beginning to look like a clear out is needed.

Worst thing is that Pearson is not a cheap option, but we were winning more games with Johnson and Holden in charge.

 

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6 hours ago, 1960maaan said:

I typed out a few things on various platforms last night, but deleted all of them. They ended up being a bit random and bitter.
So I'll try and organise my thoughts a little better this morning.

Firstly I thought we did ok first half, touch and go whether we deserved 1-0 , but not a massively undeserved scoreline.
      Scott was excellent (apart from that miss), and the midfield hadn't looked as weak as I'd expected. Defence looked good, Baker was old school Baker (Johnson looked terrified) and we were well in the game with noses in front.

Not sure what was said at half time, you expect them to calm out quickly, but it looked like we had been told to try and hold what we had.  We never got any foothold in the game, no forward momentum and definitely no control.
I hate that we bring everyone back at corners, at one stage it allowed all 10 Forest outfield players in the final 3rd, the keeper acting sweeper near half way. When we cleared it comes straight back, leave someone anyone up front, just to keep defender honest and give us chance to get out.
We have, for ages , defended too deep at the end of games. Now this has been, pressure from teams chasing a goal, fatigue meaning players drop deeper to cover plus the simple fact we cannot put a series of passes together to keep the ball and so see the game out. Last night that started from the kick off. 
Even if you play on the break (which I'm not sure we do by design, more being dominated constantly) , you need to be able to look after the ball. Wells made some good runs and that chip (I actually mentioned there was a chance 5 minutes before) shows his eye for goal, but we didn't have the control to get a decent pass away. Martin had got some good headers and flicks in but he looked like he was struggling a bit so I thought HNM was a good move. Though I expected Scott might have been first because of Nige love of Martin. Forests control and dominance made it hard for Masengo to make a real impact, though he did some nice twists & turns and nicked the ball a few times. Again because we were so deep, space was rare so Scott had become a little less effective, plus cramp , Palmer turned out to be equally ineffective. 
Still we were defending well, if too deep ( I may have mentioned that before) and Forest seemed to be getting desperate with long shots. The change of Wells for COD was strange, yet not so. I though Nhaki had a good game, and if anyone was liable to nick a goal it would be him. Then again, he had lost his footing a few times, looked frustrated, and more to the point service had all but dried up as we couldn't get decent possession. Now I can see the reasoning, COD is a good runner & Pacey . Get it to feet and he could have caused their defence real problems . It just didn't happen. 
One thing I will say, it was not a nailed on Pen. I've seen them given, but on first view it looked like he went down easily. The Ref seemed to point at the ball, so I guess he thought the defender got a touch, but also he didn't book Scott so I imagine he thought there was contact.

TBF Baker had been excellent, but I sat down as soon as Baker started to dive in. I didn't need the Ref to give the decision, even from 80 yards away it was obvious. Not only that, I was waiting for the 2nd goal. Defend like that, after chasing shadows for 45 minutes and you just just can't change your mindset and get out on the front foot. I wanted to be seeing ALL the touchline staff screaming to get out as soon as we started defending from our own area. 

We had started to see signs of improvement, and I do think in many ways we are better than we have been previously. But sadly the one thing, the main problem is exactly the same as it's been for over 2 years. We don't keep the ball, we don't control games and so we can't defend leads. Now IMO, it's partly mindset, though Pearson had started to address that with James & King. Partly nerves and partly the ability to pass to our own players in space and a big part of that, is lack of movement.
And there is the catch 22.
Because we lack movement we can't find the easy pass.
Because we can't find the easy pass we tend to go longer.
Because we go longer, we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more, we end up chasing the ball more.
Because we chase the ball more, we tire quicker.
Because we tire quicker we lack movement repeat to fade.

It's not a new thing, we suffered the same under Johnson, we suffered the same under Holden and , so far, Pearson has struggled to change it. Maybe having Williams fit might make a difference, but I don't think it's down to players, totally. It's coaching and mindset , as soon as a player passes the ball it seems like that's his job done. What we need is for that player to just move a yard to give the option of the ball back, while others do the same. We are static.
When a Forest player was fronted up, and we never really got tight too often, he had an option. If there wasn't one there, someone would make a run. Again they were streets ahead of us on the ball. The 2nd half was Bournemouth levels of dominance and if Forest had their levels of quality , Forest would have won much earlier. 
Make no mistake, this is a big, big job. One that, sadly may be too big for Pearson.

I apologise for the ramble, but at least it's off my chest now. I shall now pretend I don't like football for the next few days.

Excellent post and 100% with you regarding our inability to keep the ball! 

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30 minutes ago, wendyredredrobin said:

Some of these players are on over £1m per year and all they seem to do is turn up. There seems little fight, commitment or passion to me and few of them are worth the money they are being paid.  Losing games of football doesn't seem to bother them as they happily take their £20k per week, win, lose or draw.  I didn't think they were such a bad bunch at first, but It's beginning to look like a clear out is needed.

Worst thing is that Pearson is not a cheap option, but we were winning more games with Johnson and Holden in charge.

 

Can happen at any club at any time- it's a bit of a risk of modern football isn't it.

Sheffield United lost for the third time at home this season last night- late on v Millwall, and their squad is stacked, a good financial position and strong financial headroom- yet I bet the wage bill is rather high. I suppose with us it's even more of a risk as Bristol is a good city- Sheffield went once, quite lively, quite like it but focusing on us...

  1. Nice wage.
  2. Top notch facilities- stadium redeveloped, the HPC.
  3. Nice countryside around...
  4. ...Or if you prefer, Bristol itself.

Just feel like we are quite susceptible, more than a decent number of clubs IMO.

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4 hours ago, ray savino said:

Yep, pretty much what I thought for a very long time. We’ve been going down this path of dropping too deep for the last 3 or 4 years. It’s nothing new.

Also lack of movement in the team’s play has been a consistent problem since the “golden 6 month era” of August 2017 to December 31st 2018!!!

We’ve had these issues and the managers Johnson, Holden and Pearson plus their coaching teams appear to have been unable to resolve it with the squad of players at their disposal.

Listen, I’m not totally convinced with a lot of Pearson’s decisions at times, But he knows this is a shitshow of a mess and squad. He’s struggling. He can see the good and bad in this squad. He has no money to play with (wages and fees) because of the clubs compliance with FFP. We all seem to temporarily forget this. We all thought we’ve got a decent squad. In fact it seems with the evidence of performance of the last 3 seasons and 3 management teams, guess what? We ain’t.

We’ve got a half decent squad, the other half appear weaker in terms of their application. Some are technically decent, but their football intelligence seems sadly lacking. Some might come good in other teams, but at the moment we’re collectively crap.

I thought we competed better yesterday, should have at least deserved a draw. Forest did look to get frustrated and start taken random pot shots from distance. But we caved in with a lack of confidence and  type of player movement and game intelligence to move us up the field. Instead we desperately resort to a hoof up the field to the opposition and then run back to the edge of our own box to try some last ditch defending.

Interestingly, O’Driscoll mantra was to coach the players to a point where they didn’t have to be coached on every bit of the game - they took responsibility, read the game, adapted accordingly, make good decisions. Pearson has stated the same. The players taking ownership.

I actually think Pearson may end up doing the dirty work that on reflection O’Driscoll had to do with the end of the McGuiness era. (Or should we say it was really the end of the Gary Johnson era. Yes GJ did a great job with this club, but for me lost way ending up with a bloated squad of journeymen and the club with no plan.) O’Driscoll games were often dull (City home defeat to Sheff U horror show springs to mind?) but in hindsight he got rid of a load of deadwood, integrated more young players, and supplied players who played a key role in our rising again like Pack, Fielding, Flint, JET, got the wage bill down and the decks were cleared for the club to recruit again with a focus - even though it was with a different gaffer, Cotts. 

I would have liked to have seen Pearson here 3 or 4 years earlier. Is he going to succeed? Who knows? But I think his task is to strip out the mess that the club is at the moment. He knows that we have a squad without the character to be competing consistently. Judging by his main young signings at this time, Atkinson and Tanner, they seem promising and are showing more character, courage and passion in the short few games here this season than the likes of Palmer and O’Dowda have in all the time they’ve been here. True, on their day, Palmer and O’Dowda have ability and can do some great things. Except they don’t often have many “on their days”. 

Steve Lansdown has been great at investing in the infrastructure of the club. But he has made poor decisions in recruiting and entrusting people with the footballing direction of the club. I genuinely hope that getting Nige in will at least get us to turn the corner. I am genuinely concerned that although a leftfield progressive up and coming type of coach is an attractive proposition for the future (i.e. Cooper, Martin, etc.), the present situation is not ideal with the lack of funds and playing personnel currently with this squad. Swansea’s philosophy has been set up to take such coaches for the last 12 years or so, Forest generally has a better balanced group of players that were underperforming.

It’s going to be a painful ride at times, and although I worry about the task Nige is facing, I do still think he is the right type of figure to get things changed for the better.

However... if things still look alarmingly bleak by Xmas and a need change was looking increasingly likely, what do people think should happen and who would you see as a realistic name/type of manager to take over the reigns? This isn’t knocking Nige, who I’ve stated I want to turn it around, but genuinely interested to hear peoples opinions.

Excellent post to follow @1960maaanOP.

Interesting use of Swansea (Cooper to Martin).  Easier to transition a PL squad to a Championship one with PPs (yes I know they’ve run out now).  Martin has come into a club who finished 4th last season, yep, they’ve lost some stars, but they have been sensible financially and can tweak the squad a bit.  The fundamentals were there.

Forest (Hughton to Cooper) not so easy to correlate.  He’s done a good job in a short space, but let’s see if it continues.  They passed it better than us but I wasn’t massively impressed by them.  I think Massengo and Williams in our midfield with James and it’s a very different game.

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7 hours ago, 1960maaan said:

I typed out a few things on various platforms last night, but deleted all of them. They ended up being a bit random and bitter.
So I'll try and organise my thoughts a little better this morning.

Firstly I thought we did ok first half, touch and go whether we deserved 1-0 , but not a massively undeserved scoreline.
      Scott was excellent (apart from that miss), and the midfield hadn't looked as weak as I'd expected. Defence looked good, Baker was old school Baker (Johnson looked terrified) and we were well in the game with noses in front.

Not sure what was said at half time, you expect them to calm out quickly, but it looked like we had been told to try and hold what we had.  We never got any foothold in the game, no forward momentum and definitely no control.
I hate that we bring everyone back at corners, at one stage it allowed all 10 Forest outfield players in the final 3rd, the keeper acting sweeper near half way. When we cleared it comes straight back, leave someone anyone up front, just to keep defender honest and give us chance to get out.
We have, for ages , defended too deep at the end of games. Now this has been, pressure from teams chasing a goal, fatigue meaning players drop deeper to cover plus the simple fact we cannot put a series of passes together to keep the ball and so see the game out. Last night that started from the kick off. 
Even if you play on the break (which I'm not sure we do by design, more being dominated constantly) , you need to be able to look after the ball. Wells made some good runs and that chip (I actually mentioned there was a chance 5 minutes before) shows his eye for goal, but we didn't have the control to get a decent pass away. Martin had got some good headers and flicks in but he looked like he was struggling a bit so I thought HNM was a good move. Though I expected Scott might have been first because of Nige love of Martin. Forests control and dominance made it hard for Masengo to make a real impact, though he did some nice twists & turns and nicked the ball a few times. Again because we were so deep, space was rare so Scott had become a little less effective, plus cramp , Palmer turned out to be equally ineffective. 
Still we were defending well, if too deep ( I may have mentioned that before) and Forest seemed to be getting desperate with long shots. The change of Wells for COD was strange, yet not so. I though Nhaki had a good game, and if anyone was liable to nick a goal it would be him. Then again, he had lost his footing a few times, looked frustrated, and more to the point service had all but dried up as we couldn't get decent possession. Now I can see the reasoning, COD is a good runner & Pacey . Get it to feet and he could have caused their defence real problems . It just didn't happen. 
One thing I will say, it was not a nailed on Pen. I've seen them given, but on first view it looked like he went down easily. The Ref seemed to point at the ball, so I guess he thought the defender got a touch, but also he didn't book Scott so I imagine he thought there was contact.

TBF Baker had been excellent, but I sat down as soon as Baker started to dive in. I didn't need the Ref to give the decision, even from 80 yards away it was obvious. Not only that, I was waiting for the 2nd goal. Defend like that, after chasing shadows for 45 minutes and you just just can't change your mindset and get out on the front foot. I wanted to be seeing ALL the touchline staff screaming to get out as soon as we started defending from our own area. 

We had started to see signs of improvement, and I do think in many ways we are better than we have been previously. But sadly the one thing, the main problem is exactly the same as it's been for over 2 years. We don't keep the ball, we don't control games and so we can't defend leads. Now IMO, it's partly mindset, though Pearson had started to address that with James & King. Partly nerves and partly the ability to pass to our own players in space and a big part of that, is lack of movement.
And there is the catch 22.
Because we lack movement we can't find the easy pass.
Because we can't find the easy pass we tend to go longer.
Because we go longer, we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more, we end up chasing the ball more.
Because we chase the ball more, we tire quicker.
Because we tire quicker we lack movement repeat to fade.

It's not a new thing, we suffered the same under Johnson, we suffered the same under Holden and , so far, Pearson has struggled to change it. Maybe having Williams fit might make a difference, but I don't think it's down to players, totally. It's coaching and mindset , as soon as a player passes the ball it seems like that's his job done. What we need is for that player to just move a yard to give the option of the ball back, while others do the same. We are static.
When a Forest player was fronted up, and we never really got tight too often, he had an option. If there wasn't one there, someone would make a run. Again they were streets ahead of us on the ball. The 2nd half was Bournemouth levels of dominance and if Forest had their levels of quality , Forest would have won much earlier. 
Make no mistake, this is a big, big job. One that, sadly may be too big for Pearson.

I apologise for the ramble, but at least it's off my chest now. I shall now pretend I don't like football for the next few days.

A quick precis. We are a very ordinary side with no pace that struggles to hold possession or pass the ball. We rely on defending deep and playing on the break without the outlets to do this reliably or very effectively. We are dull to watch and it threatens to be a challenging winter.  

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I have come to the conclusion that we are our own worst enemies in home games. We play a sensible game plan in the first half and sometimes, as last evening, get a half time lead.

We then from second half kick off, defend deeper and deeper. Rare occasions give us a break to attack but as the whole team becomes two teams with only a couple or three attacking and the rest on half way line at best. We concede possession to the opponents and get squashed into our own penalty area by 70/75 minutes. Non possession of the ball is very tiring and by the last five minutes as a team we are completely shot. Unable ro do anything other than lump it forward to nobody in red. There was one example yesterday when we had a shot at Forest goal and about ten seconds later a Forest player is through one on one with Bentley. We are too tired to chase back!

This has to change immediately otherwise every home game result will be the same - lesding 1-0 or level yet conceding goal/goals in the last ten minutes.

I have great respect for Nigel Pearson and what he is doing to repair us but maybe a bit braver in second halves to consolidate rather than to hang on in our own penalty area.

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7 minutes ago, cidered abroad said:

I have come to the conclusion that we are our own worst enemies in home games. We play a sensible game plan in the first half and sometimes, as last evening, get a half time lead.

We then from second half kick off, defend deeper and deeper. Rare occasions give us a break to attack but as the whole team becomes two teams with only a couple or three attacking and the rest on half way line at best. We concede possession to the opponents and get squashed into our own penalty area by 70/75 minutes. Non possession of the ball is very tiring and by the last five minutes as a team we are completely shot. Unable ro do anything other than lump it forward to nobody in red. There was one example yesterday when we had a shot at Forest goal and about ten seconds later a Forest player is through one on one with Bentley. We are too tired to chase back!

This has to change immediately otherwise every home game result will be the same - lesding 1-0 or level yet conceding goal/goals in the last ten minutes.

I have great respect for Nigel Pearson and what he is doing to repair us but maybe a bit braver in second halves to consolidate rather than to hang on in our own penalty area.

Agree with a lot of your post, this bit IMO is quite important- whether it is mentally or physically, it is very tiring. The whole rest in possession thing is quite important these days- bit difficult when you have the levels that we have had at home the last 2-3 games. Granted Fulham and Bournemouth are Fulham and Bournemouth but last night 2nd half...? It's cumulative thing

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7 hours ago, 1960maaan said:

I typed out a few things on various platforms last night, but deleted all of them. They ended up being a bit random and bitter.
So I'll try and organise my thoughts a little better this morning.

Firstly I thought we did ok first half, touch and go whether we deserved 1-0 , but not a massively undeserved scoreline.
      Scott was excellent (apart from that miss), and the midfield hadn't looked as weak as I'd expected. Defence looked good, Baker was old school Baker (Johnson looked terrified) and we were well in the game with noses in front.

Not sure what was said at half time, you expect them to calm out quickly, but it looked like we had been told to try and hold what we had.  We never got any foothold in the game, no forward momentum and definitely no control.
I hate that we bring everyone back at corners, at one stage it allowed all 10 Forest outfield players in the final 3rd, the keeper acting sweeper near half way. When we cleared it comes straight back, leave someone anyone up front, just to keep defender honest and give us chance to get out.
We have, for ages , defended too deep at the end of games. Now this has been, pressure from teams chasing a goal, fatigue meaning players drop deeper to cover plus the simple fact we cannot put a series of passes together to keep the ball and so see the game out. Last night that started from the kick off. 
Even if you play on the break (which I'm not sure we do by design, more being dominated constantly) , you need to be able to look after the ball. Wells made some good runs and that chip (I actually mentioned there was a chance 5 minutes before) shows his eye for goal, but we didn't have the control to get a decent pass away. Martin had got some good headers and flicks in but he looked like he was struggling a bit so I thought HNM was a good move. Though I expected Scott might have been first because of Nige love of Martin. Forests control and dominance made it hard for Masengo to make a real impact, though he did some nice twists & turns and nicked the ball a few times. Again because we were so deep, space was rare so Scott had become a little less effective, plus cramp , Palmer turned out to be equally ineffective. 
Still we were defending well, if too deep ( I may have mentioned that before) and Forest seemed to be getting desperate with long shots. The change of Wells for COD was strange, yet not so. I though Nhaki had a good game, and if anyone was liable to nick a goal it would be him. Then again, he had lost his footing a few times, looked frustrated, and more to the point service had all but dried up as we couldn't get decent possession. Now I can see the reasoning, COD is a good runner & Pacey . Get it to feet and he could have caused their defence real problems . It just didn't happen. 
One thing I will say, it was not a nailed on Pen. I've seen them given, but on first view it looked like he went down easily. The Ref seemed to point at the ball, so I guess he thought the defender got a touch, but also he didn't book Scott so I imagine he thought there was contact.

TBF Baker had been excellent, but I sat down as soon as Baker started to dive in. I didn't need the Ref to give the decision, even from 80 yards away it was obvious. Not only that, I was waiting for the 2nd goal. Defend like that, after chasing shadows for 45 minutes and you just just can't change your mindset and get out on the front foot. I wanted to be seeing ALL the touchline staff screaming to get out as soon as we started defending from our own area. 

We had started to see signs of improvement, and I do think in many ways we are better than we have been previously. But sadly the one thing, the main problem is exactly the same as it's been for over 2 years. We don't keep the ball, we don't control games and so we can't defend leads. Now IMO, it's partly mindset, though Pearson had started to address that with James & King. Partly nerves and partly the ability to pass to our own players in space and a big part of that, is lack of movement.
And there is the catch 22.
Because we lack movement we can't find the easy pass.
Because we can't find the easy pass we tend to go longer.
Because we go longer, we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more.
Because we lose the ball more, we end up chasing the ball more.
Because we chase the ball more, we tire quicker.
Because we tire quicker we lack movement repeat to fade.

It's not a new thing, we suffered the same under Johnson, we suffered the same under Holden and , so far, Pearson has struggled to change it. Maybe having Williams fit might make a difference, but I don't think it's down to players, totally. It's coaching and mindset , as soon as a player passes the ball it seems like that's his job done. What we need is for that player to just move a yard to give the option of the ball back, while others do the same. We are static.
When a Forest player was fronted up, and we never really got tight too often, he had an option. If there wasn't one there, someone would make a run. Again they were streets ahead of us on the ball. The 2nd half was Bournemouth levels of dominance and if Forest had their levels of quality , Forest would have won much earlier. 
Make no mistake, this is a big, big job. One that, sadly may be too big for Pearson.

I apologise for the ramble, but at least it's off my chest now. I shall now pretend I don't like football for the next few days.

I went for the midnight rant whilst laying in bed. 😃

You’ve added far more detail and context. All I saw last night - and not for the first time in recent seasons - was a group of players largely devoid of ability. Of ambition. Of energy. Of ideas.

Epitomised for me by Captain Dan.

I know what I’ll do says Dan to himself.

I’ll do what I’ve done all night. What’s not worked but the next time it just might.

I’ll kick it hard. With all my might. Perhaps this time we might win the first ball. And the second ball.

Oh **** me. It’s coming straight back. Never mind. I’ll try it again. And again.

After all if at first you don’t succeed……

Moments of pleasure? Tanner - looked good and “up for it”. HNM - some skilful touches when he came on. Baker - tidy for a fair bit of the game. Atkinson - potential. Wells - bit of vision. Scott - tidy at times.

But Christ Alive. What a shambles. Good luck Nigel. Hope you’re making your own plans…..

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10 minutes ago, BigAl&Toby said:

I’ll kick it hard. With all my might. Perhaps this time we might win the first ball. And the second ball.

Because we don't have players that can play in tight spaces, under pressure or even find a pocket of space, we can't play out from the back. Which means we have no other option and we are back to chasing shadows again. @Davefevs highlighted the number of 2nd balls they picked up in good areas, means they get possession and we chase them again. 

It's annoying, we have good players, skilful players . But they don't do the things they train for all week. Watch the videos, all one or two touch pass and move, get to a Saturday and the game plan seems to be , hit Martin, fight for knock downs. 
I think Nige has us doing that more because we simply can't hold the ball.

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45 minutes ago, 1960maaan said:

Because we don't have players that can play in tight spaces, under pressure or even find a pocket of space, we can't play out from the back. Which means we have no other option and we are back to chasing shadows again. @Davefevs highlighted the number of 2nd balls they picked up in good areas, means they get possession and we chase them again. 

It's annoying, we have good players, skilful players . But they don't do the things they train for all week. Watch the videos, all one or two touch pass and move, get to a Saturday and the game plan seems to be , hit Martin, fight for knock downs. 
I think Nige has us doing that more because we simply can't hold the ball.

To this point- Massengo, Dasilva and Scott all have the technical skill to keep the ball in tight areas, even with 2 or 3 big (and Forest were physically much bigger than us) lads close to them...but they either don't have the vision or don't get given the options, to release the ball after. This happened with each of them two or three times last night.

So yeh, we have enough players with that technicality, but the others have have work harder to allow it to be useful. Right now it's wasted.

See also Weimann's lung-busting charge up the pitch. Ultimately wasted because he either didn't see the options, or they weren't good enough enough be used.

 

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8 hours ago, Countryfile said:

It was one of those nights when after a few minutes I thought we have too many players out of touch, as the game went on my fears were confirmed.

Bottom line is until January we are going to rely on some players who are simply OK at times and poor to very poor at others.

 

It seemed to me that having got into the Forest area, too many of our players simply lacked the confidence to shoot.Forest were even shooting from outside the box. I think other teams are aware of City's fragility because immediately after equalising, Forest players picked up the ball and sprinted back to the centre spot to get the game restarted. They KNEW they could win that game. If City haad equalised in the 90th, we#d have wasted time kicking the ball into touch.

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Our passing and ball retention in the second half of any game at home is utterly ninth rate. 
 

We are weak and tired of chasing the ball out of possession. 
 

NP got one thing right. We are embarrassing. Particularly in front of the defense. 
 

Kalas Baker Tanner and Atkinson are not the problem. But the ******* in front of them let them down. And yes that includes HNM. Passing and retaining possession is the minimum you can expect. Giving the ball away constantly and then expecting the back four to get you out of it constantly is nothing short of dereliction of duty. 
 

Bentley keeps keeping us in it, but is prone to a soft goal which keeps happening. Christ alive what I would give to have Gerry Gow in there scaring them into not being awful!
 


 

 

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4 minutes ago, REDOXO said:

Our passing and ball retention in the second half of any game at home is utterly ninth rate. 
 

We are weak and tired of chasing the ball out of possession. 
 

NP got one thing right. We are embarrassing. Particularly in front of the defense. 
 

Kalas Baker Tanner and Atkinson are not the problem. But the ******* in front of them let them down. And yes that includes HNM. Passing and retaining possession is the minimum you can expect. Giving the ball away constantly and then expecting the back four to get you out of it constantly is nothing short of dereliction of duty. 
 

Bentley keeps keeping us in it, but is prone to a soft goal which keeps happening. Christ alive what I would give to have Gerry Gow in there scaring them into not being awful!
 


 

 

That's exactly who we need 'Gerry Gow'! What a player he was!

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16 minutes ago, REDOXO said:

Our passing and ball retention in the second half of any game at home is utterly ninth rate. 
 

We are weak and tired of chasing the ball out of possession. 
 

NP got one thing right. We are embarrassing. Particularly in front of the defense. 
 

Kalas Baker Tanner and Atkinson are not the problem. But the ******* in front of them let them down. And yes that includes HNM. Passing and retaining possession is the minimum you can expect. Giving the ball away constantly and then expecting the back four to get you out of it constantly is nothing short of dereliction of duty. 
 

Bentley keeps keeping us in it, but is prone to a soft goal which keeps happening. Christ alive what I would give to have Gerry Gow in there scaring them into not being awful!
 


 

 

Not so much the first few home games IMO, but the last 2 in particular- Fulham was tough but we showed the right spirit.

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1 hour ago, Mr Popodopolous said:

Not so much the first few home games IMO, but the last 2 in particular- Fulham was tough but we showed the right spirit.

The less possession we have the more chasing we do, it does catch up. Its October and we look tired after 70 minutes  that will be 65 minutes by EO November. It did for our hopes in the league under LJ every time

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4 minutes ago, REDOXO said:

The less possession we have the more chasing we do, it does catch up. Its October and we look tired after 70 minutes  that will be 65 minutes by EO November. It did for our hopes in the league under LJ every time

Agreed- plus it will add to risks of fatigue which means a greater risk of knocks, injuries etc.

All that chasing or if not chasing, sheer concentration and having to anticipate, well it will knacker a side, both physically but also perhaps mentally.

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