Date:Wednesday October 3 2012
2nd October 2012, 7.45pm
Football is football, the ball is still round, Bournemouth are still awful.
I`ll start with the positives from this game; for the first 15 minutes or so we were actually playing better than our opposition; aside from 90 minutes against a shockingly poor Yeovil side I'm not sure that`s happened in another match I've witnessed this season. We were passing well; Daniels was causing a lot of problems in an attacking wing-back role and Zubar surprised me with his deft touches and skills at right back, a role I don`t recall having seen him play before tonight. However, as is standard for the season, it yielded nothing but a few pot shots, all dealt with fairly easily by the Crawley defence.
But that was about it for positives. The cherries faded from the 20th minute onwards and never seemed to recover. The tempo and fairly accurate passing that had seen them putting pressure on during the opening stages had all but vanished by the 25th minute, and shortly afterwards Crawley took the lead. Zubar dealt with a simple cross by attempting an own goal; missing the post by inches & conceding the corner. What followed was an absolute catalogue of defensive errors. To have so many personnel making zero contribution inside a space as small as the penalty box is really quite an achievement. In the ensuing scramble James saved the first shot valiantly before it was hacked straight back to Hope AKPAN who calmly slotted home for a very easy first. Bournemouth had at least 2 solid chances to clear their lines and failed miserably, and Addison and Elphick just can not win defensive headers.
We then had a corner, and a few flashes of decent play, but didn`t really make anything of it & before you knew it we were two down. Once again, like at the weekend, there was an abject failure to deal with a cross into the box, with Joe WALSH easily heading past a helpless James from close range. If Walsh hadn`t headed it in there were a number of other red shirts queuing to get it in the net, and James`s baffled shrug at the quality of the defending was not unjustified. I`m quite confident we were better at dealing with crosses into the box under Bond, and even Quinn at the bottom of league 2. Shortly afterwards they scored again, almost ambling up the pitch to force a very smart save from James at his near post
Now the half time score certainly flattered Crawley on the balance of play; we had at least been competitive, and possibly played better football, but if you defend crosses how we did, you`ll be two down in almost any league; so frustrating to watch.
Now, on to the second half. Jesus Christ I don`t even know where to start with this shower. I`ve seen some shocking performances in my 14 years of regular attendance but we were struggling to remember anything as abject as tonight`s second half in the car. But for a number of valiant saves from James Crawley could, and probably should have had 6.
The key to Crawley`s dominance was the positioning of our full backs. Daniels was playing (albeit semi-effectively) as a winger, totally ignoring his defensive duties, whilst Zubar, somewhat understandably, drifted into the middle constantly, meaning very few crosses were stopped all night. Combine Crawley`s crossing at will with an almost total lack of aerial presence from either centre back and it`s hard to see how Crawley didn`t score at least another 3. There was a brief flurry after half time, which incredibly yielded what was quite a nice goal; Daniels beat his man before knocking it into the area; Tubbs produce a brilliant return flick right on the touchline before Daniels passed to BARNARD who calmly slotted it home. That was as good as it got. The goal gave Bournemouth motivation to go forward, meaning Daniels was nowhere near the ball for their third goal a few minutes later. After a Bournemouth attack petered out, Crawley broke on the right hand side, and with Daniels nowhere to be seen Elphick was left to deal with the winger. Elphick was within a yard of the Crawley player from the moment he entered our half. The winger then ran the length of our half, dodging two woeful sliding challenges and crossed into the middle; meaning Addison moved across; Crawley simply moved it along again, to where Addison should have been, finding Nicky ADAMS to place a powerful shot past James into the bottom corner.
That was game over. The last half hour was an absolute master class of incompetence with Addison and Elphick producing some of the most embarrassing failed sliced clearances I have ever witnessed at any level, let alone league one. I`m so embarrassed I`m actually finding it difficult to write about. We never even looked like getting back into it, & Crawley absolutely loved it. Daniels was so anonymous Nathan Byrne (yes that one,) was made to look like Nani, ambling up to the edge of the area totally unchallenged before slicing it into the crowd. As I said before, Crawley could cross at will, and Elphick and Addison weren`t stopping any of them, so we only really had James to thank that we didn`t concede 6.
Last week we had Walsall singing "ole" after completing every pass, this week Crawley Town gave us a rousing rendition of 'can we play you every week.` I wonder what Coventry will come up with?
James 7 Perhaps could have come for a cross that led to one of the goals but made 5 or 6 fine saves to make up for it. Hard to blame him for conceding 3 with this defence.
Daniels. 6 Wonderful going forward, at times lacking in defence; but a half decent manager would have registered this and told him to drop back a bit.
Elphick. 3. Yes,three. I`ve only ever given out two 3s before, but Elphick is probably the most deserved recipient yet. Cook was on the bench today and absolutely must start at Coventry.
Addison. 4 Mildly more imposing than Elphick but only very slightly. Some clown like defending (literally) in the second half severely let the team down.
Zubar 5. At fault for the first goal and with all the positional sense of the Mary Celeste, although in his defence he was played at RB today. At least showed some heart, passion and frustration which is more than I can say for some of his colleagues.
Hughes 6. Didn`t make any major errors and hampered many a Crawley attack; still capable of much better.
Carmichael. 7 The lad has a lot of talent and made some wonderful passes and touches, but unfortunately didn`t impose himself on the game in the second half. Certainly an exciting prospect, evident even in a dismal team performance like today.
O Kane. 4 Poor. Offered little threat, disappeared for long periods, no defensive cover. Almost what we`ve come to expect.
Davids 5. Obviously talented but so far off the pace it`s incredible that he`s above Partington in the pecking order. I can`t wait for him to get some match fitness back as I actually think there`s evidence that he`s quite a promising signing.
Tubbs (replaced Demouge after 10 mins) 6 worked exceptionally hard, and made few mistakes, but no crosses, no service, and no chances to score. Felt really sorry for him.
Barnard. 6 No service, but linked well with Tubbs and finished the goal. Not sure what more the strikers can do if they have to feed off the scraps we`re giving them at the moment.
Partington 5 Sharp passing but little impact
Fletcher; not enough time to rate him, we were getting such a dicking at the other end of the pitch he hardly touched the ball.
Date:Wednesday October 3 2012
Howe: We delivered when the pressure was on (Friday May 17 2013)
Ritchie: It`s my best achievement (Friday May 17 2013)
Addison: Biggest challenge of my career (Friday May 17 2013)
Cherries to erect temporary stand (Friday May 17 2013)
Elphick: Howe loves Bournemouth (Thursday May 16 2013)
Francis: Howe chart was eye opener (Thursday May 16 2013)
Strugnell joins H&W (Thursday May 16 2013)
Arter: Hughes experience is a positive (Wednesday May 15 2013)
Pitman: I don't have anything to prove (Wednesday May 15 2013)
Cherries pre-season begins to take shape *update* (Tuesday May 14 2013)
|5. Sheff Utd||46||19||18||9||+14||75|
|7. Leyton Orient||46||21||8||17||+7||71|
|Almost 5,000 miles on the road for Blades fans
» Sheff Utd : 19/05/2013 20:04:00
|SUFC League One Complete After Yeovil Win
» Sheff Utd : 19/05/2013 19:39:00
|Johnson - It's A Great Achievement
» Yeovil : 19/05/2013 16:44:00
» Yeovil : 19/05/2013 16:35:00
|League 1 2013-14 Roll Call
» Walsall : 19/05/2013 15:49:00
|2013/14 Confirmed League One Clubs
» Swindon : 19/05/2013 15:43:00
|Yeovil Win Play-Off To Complete League 1 Line Up
» Leyton Orient : 19/05/2013 15:33:00