I don’t often go on about the footie on here, but yesterday’s match – or the whining afterwards – has pissed me off. I’m no tactician, very much just someone who goes for the atmosphere and the fun of it, but even I could spot major problems early on. For those with no interest in the Bolton / NUFC tie yesterday, just skip down to the next entry. Thanks.
Wasn’t Bernard carrying a knock from the last match? In which case, I understand not starting him. But Robert should have been on from the beginning to support Ambrose. The one time he (Ambrose) did something productive, it involved running up the middle of the park. Prior to that he had managed to make some progress only to find himself stranded.
Likewise, Bellamy was missing the pace of Jenas, sitting on the bench with a sore back. Just as Ambrose found himself sat on the left wing with nobody to cross to, Bellamy frequently found himself in a similar position as he’d hared all the way up there while the remaining players were barely off the starting blocks.
And what’s with standing a player in front of people for throw-ins? I’ve seen it on rare occasion before, but for almost every long throw in? You’re hardly going to obscure their vision if all they want to do is lob it miles, and you’re keeping a player out of the box who could clear a ball off the line.
Then to come out after the game and whinge about Bolton’s tactics, thus bringing us back into the headlines for the wrong reason *again* (I’m looking at you, Mr Souness)…
My only complaint about Bolton yesterday was Diouf falling over like a house of cards every time someone went near him. Aside from that we were tactically outplayed. Well done to Allardyce for studying our form and working out how best to close us down and win 3 points.
We could and should have spotted this earlier on and changed our tactics. It’s hard, difficult, maybe impossible to find a way round the tactics Bolton used without adopting similar tactics yourself. It wasn’t pretty to watch. It does hark back to Wimbledon of old despite the Bolton fans on 606 claiming it wasn’t. It doesn’t matter. It worked.
Bolton’s two scuffy goals both counted. Our one wonder-strike, though much better to watch, still only counted as a sole goal. Well done, Bolton. I’d not go and watch you every week (you were much more entertaining in the cup last year), but fourth place after eleven games is nothing to be sniffed at.