Writer: Neil Dawson
Date:Wednesday September 19 2012
18th September 2012, 7:45pm
The pools coupon love affair with Bournemouth continued tonight with the fourth successive home score draw in a row. At least there was more entertainment than the previous three (and a couple more goals) but the Cherries inability to fashion a home win after large investment is still troubling.
Groves quest to find a winning formula saw three more changes in an ever changing team line up. In came the second half rescuers from Saturday - Pugh and Daniels replacing Cook and Fogden with goalscorer Tubbs starting up front with Mcquoid dropping to the bench. The formation stayed the same though - although as diamonds go it widened slightly - possibly the influence of Harry Redknapp and his in-built love of width.
The changes made no initial impact with Brentford off to the better start. Jalal saved smartly when Arter's dreadful pass back found the lively Donaldson. The visitors didn't have long to wait for a goal though as a calamitous series of defensive errors saw them take the lead. A routine free kick into the box was met by Francis's flying backwards header into his own net - Jalal having inexplicably come for the ball 12 yards out. Presumably one of them called and they both blamed each other.
It could have been so much worse when two Brentford players were unmarked from a header back across the six yard box but thankfully they got in each others way and the chance went begging.
The crowd kept right behind the home team though - showing the fervour that the board thought we lacked on Saturday and it spurred Bournemouth on to a good last twenty five minutes. The play zipped around, Tubbs and Grabban were linking well and Pugh - sticking to the wing - was on his old form. Brentford looked creaky. The equaliser was beautifully fashioned and expertly finished. Francis swinging in a thunderous cross which TUBBS brilliantly headed home checking back and positioning it brilliantly into the bottom corner. A real goalscorers finish.
With Bournemouth adding 'move' to the 'pass and move' so missing on Saturday the home side took the lead when Grabban raced onto O'Kanes through ball and was brought down by keeper Moore. DANIELS calmly slotted the penalty home but not after a disturbing argument over who should take it. Tubbs, Grabban and Daniels all wanted to and Addison stormed forward to point at the left back.
By this stage it was all Bournemouth - thankfully the tip tap around the back was replaced with getting the ball forward earlier and it should have resulted in another goal when a brilliant four man move released Grabban but he pulled his shot wide - this coming after he had volleyed a Pugh cross wastefully wide from 12 yards.
There were still signs of defensive frailty though - Elphick and Jalal arguing like mad after a near replica of Brentfords goal - this time thankfully Elphicks header had more meat on it and didn't drop in the net.
HT Bournemouth 2 Brentford 1
With two great chances to stretch the lead at the end of the first half - Bournemouth started in exactly the same vein. Moore made a brilliant save to tip away Francis's header and then Grabban sliced wide another good opportunity as Bournemouth went for the jugular.
Bizarrely the home team then stopped and gradually ran out of ideas and puff allowing Brentford more and more into the ascendancy as frustration grew in the seats. When you discuss management effectiveness there were two key turning points in the match - centering on the use of subs. Brentfords Rosler had matched our diamond for the first half and finding himself behind changed matters. He brought on Forrester an orthodox left winger and this changed the game. Groves kept to his diamond meaning Forrester had the freedom of the park.
This tactical change comfounded and stretched Bournemouth who could no longer get the ball as Brentford exposed both flanks. To make matters worse - with Arter struggling with a knock Francis then went down heavily. This meant both our right sided players were limping. Any other manager in the world would have sent people to cover or even made a quick sub. Groves did nothing. And there in lies our problem. Brentford, surprise surprise, immediately attacked down the left - Forrester skipping past the limping Arter and cutting inside the limping Francis and smacking the ball past Jalal. You really couldn't make incompetence like this up.
And so, a game that was there for the taking, became another draw. Groves will stick to the chances missed late on - notably Tubbs going one on one and hitting Moore and then missing a free header six yards out. There was even a Partington shot that hit the inside of the post and travelled across the line - it was only a freak of physics in the spin that kept it out. As a manager you know your luck is out when even God doesn't want you to keep your job.
Frustratingly for the home fans all the pace and energy had gone - even with the arrival of the quick duo Fogden and Mcquoid and it was Brentford pushing for a win at the end with Dean's header flashing wide and Donaldson volleying narrowly over.
FT Bournemouth 2 Brentford 2
Jalal 5 - One fatal error - one he got away with.
Francis 6 - Energy but distribution wayward one great cross aside
Addison 6 - A little uneasy against the awkward Donaldson
Elphick 6 - Beaten to ball a few times but generally solid.
Daniels 6 - Not got the licence to attack that he needs.
Arter 6 - Blew hot and cold - great moments of skill - poor use of ball
Partington 7 - Solid defensively and better involvement than usual
O'Kane 6 - Good when on top in first half - faded badly second.
Pugh 8 - Inventive and dangerous - faded last fifteen.
Tubbs 7 - Good movement, great goal, then two poor misses
Grabban 6 - Hard to work out what he brings but nice moments.
Date:Wednesday September 19 2012
Ward: It's going to be a big test (Wednesday June 19 2013)
Cherries sign Ward (Wednesday June 19 2013)
Arter: 'Every game will be a big one' (Tuesday June 18 2013)
Ritchie: Looking forward to Portsmouth (Tuesday June 18 2013)
Cherries to host Pompey in the Capital One Cup (Monday June 17 2013)
Fraser: I'm ready to deliver (Monday June 17 2013)
AFCB Sign Holmes (Monday June 17 2013)
Howe: We will continue to pass (Monday June 17 2013)
Long-term Injury Update (Monday June 17 2013)
Time for Stockley to Shine (Friday June 14 2013)
|5. Sheff Utd||46||19||18||9||+14||75|
|7. Leyton Orient||46||21||8||17||+7||71|
|2013/14 Swindon Town Fixtures
» Swindon : 19/06/2013 09:14:00
|Walsall FC Fixtures 2013/14
» Walsall : 19/06/2013 09:06:00
|Swindon Town Summer Transfers & Rumours
» Swindon : 19/06/2013 08:43:00
|Ward: It's going to be a big test
» Bournemouth : 19/06/2013 04:04:00
|Cherries sign Ward
» Bournemouth : 19/06/2013 03:13:00
|Excitement builds ahead of fixtures release
» Crewe : 18/06/2013 21:22:00
|Trip into the unknown for Alex
» Crewe : 18/06/2013 21:15:00