Really disappointing if predictably so tonight.
First half we were well on top, created enough chances to win three games in the first half hour, Aaron side footing a penalty to the keeper and having another side foot cleared off the line, maybe should have put his foot through both, Goldy looked lively and had a few pot shots as well, then in first half injury time their first shot hits a defender and loops in via a ridiculous deflection. How's your luck?
Second half we were very very poor, and their late second goal was more than merited, an awful first touch by one of the centre halves (think it was Kirby but unsure from the far end) saw their centre forward have an easy tap in.
Dave was sent off in injury time after a late aerial challenge poleaxed their number 5 as their keeper caught the ball, he was late and it was a probable booking, nothing malicious in it. Their 3 took exception to this and kicked Dave in the back, aimed two or three punches at him as well. Dave did retaliate and throw a punch back in the melee that followed. The referee came over, didn't bother to consult the linesman, showed Dave a straight red card, and didn't even have a word with any of their players. Straight after this, we knocked a long ball over the top for Leon to chase, their 4 came over to shepherd the ball back to the keeper, and went down like a sack of shit holding his face as if Leon had hit him. Thankfully this attempt at conning the referee into sending another of our players off didn't work, but it summed up their cynical, time wasting approach to the 2nd half.
Credit where it's due, they deserved their victory, the keeper particularly played well (and timewasted even better) but we were really not very good after the first half hour, when the game should have been done and dusted.
Re: Awful again
A very fair summary by Paul.
Once we missed those early chances, the writing was on the wall.
The 3-5-2 formation worked in so much as we were able to field three decent offensive players without asking one of them to play too wide and all three posed an attacking threat first half. Credit to Sulamain for his willingness to attack from right wing back but he struggled late on in the 4-4-2, probably due to fitness.
Both keepers made decent saves but their bloke saving the penalty and bravely blocking Leon 2nd half were the pick. Their defender's goal-line clearance 1st half from Aaron was exceptional....as he'd picked his spot right in the corner.
Their (Romanian?) 4 dog, is a decent centre-half but is a master of the dark arts. When he's about to get done for pace he knows how to run across the path of the attacker and is always pulling shirts. He also enjoys the sly nibbles (think Aaron in the first match) and he was at it again last night. Nothing too much but just enough to make a difference. I like his ability, I like his cleverness but I don't like him.
I know they were complaining about some of Dave's fouls but there was no need for their bloke to have a sly dig at him in the last minute when the game was won.
Last night was a clear example of how much the loss of the Maclarens and Elliot Braithwaite has hurt us. Our midfield can't dominate and our back-line looks vulnerable. I know our strikers aren't firing either but IF we can get Andre fit and playing regularly, then I'm sure that will be the spark we need to get things going up front.
Oh well....let's hope that Sunday brings a change of fortune. Any sort of win would give everyone a big boost. Boy, do we need one.
Edited by Deadman at 08:10:11 on 28th October 2015
Re: Awful again
Really appreciate the feedback. I have a tad sympathy with our 'Enfield Syndrome'. Tactically over the years it's been a nightmare. Pack the midfield and/or restrict width. They have us licked, yet their left-back traditionally manages to provide an aerial bombardment from the half-way line. All this kind of stuff you can envisage the game without actually being there.
As for last night, Dave sent off, out of character is something we've heard far too often. It's indicative of a team with far-reaching unresolved issues and I am sorry to say until we resolve our personnel issues in the heart of midfield the games are seemingly going to follow similar inevitable patterns.
Merstham did my head in. They are rank mediocrity and their midfield created more in sporadic moves whilst are collective huff and puff created nothing in trying to blow their house down.
Home truth time, we are not good enough in the middle and until we resolve our issues we remain vulnerable - but I do have a tad sympathy with our Enfield Syndrome - we seem utterly incapable of playing there and our performances there seem frankly a mess. We lack cohesion every time we go there. And frankly how good are they?
We are crying out for ball retention and play-makers in the middle of the park. It's lack of dynamic has clearly been incorporated into the psyche of the forwards.
It's damn frustrating.