Saturday 10th December 2005
We lost, the score line is not a true reflection of what happened, and we all know that. Let''s take the positives where possible and learn from what has gone before us. Let''s get a win before Christmas, and start climbing to safety. It won’t be easy but if we all give 100% commitment we will make it there together (J.R.R. Tolkien eat your heart out!).
For the first half hour of the second half we were fantastic, we battled for everything all across the pitch and looked threatening going forward, our wingers looked good when given the ball, our midfielders worked hard and our defence was solid.
The rest of the game there are not enough expletives to describe.
This Saturday is a new game, a new weekend and a fresh chance. Let''s all endeavour to make it there at least an hour early so we can have a chat, relax and most of all sort the team out rather than have to change it with 5 minutes before kick off.
Points to learn from last week
The lone striker, if up front on your own you need to hold the ball, control the ball in front of you and shield it from the defender, get yourself in the way of him and the ball. That way he will have to give away a foul. Alan Shearer is probably the best in the world at this. If you control the ball instead of flicking it each time you can bring the midfielders into the game or spread it wide for the wingers. Yes the quick flick is good once or twice but very rarely is there a runner on the end and it just gives the ball away and invites pressure on us.
Our wingers need to stay wide, if you stay tucked inside you narrow the middle of the pitch and make it congested and easier for the opposition to defend against. Feel the whites of the lines and scream for that ball, not once did I hear either of you shouting for that ball.
Midfielders need to get their heads up, have a look what’s on before you get the ball. Spread the ball wide, don’t try and dribble it all the time. Take your time when you’ve got the ball. When you haven’t got the ball, get back, defend, mark your men and try and win that ball back, they can’t score if we have it (that is as long as we don’t pass back to the keeper, sorry Jon couldn’t resist).
Defenders need to follow their men and don’t dive in, stay on your feet as long as you can. If you can’t win the ball straight off, hold him up, jockey but don’t commit yourself too easy and let him go past, we did that a lot on Saturday and it meant that we were overrun.
We all need to be more vocal on the pitch, we all need to tell each other what is going on, if you have two men say so. Don’t let there just be one voice on the pitch, we all have a mouth and can use it!!
But most importantly, GROW SOME BALLS AND FIGHT FOR THE WIN, battle hard for every ball. I’d rather you passing out at half time with exhaustion after giving your all than still not sweating but ready to run a marathon after the game! Let''s put all our effort into this game and celebrate with a few jugs on Saturday, who knows, Des might even pay, if that’s not an incentive I don’t know what is…