Post Match Thoughts – Boro
Yesterday’s game at Boro was ultimately a disappointing afternoon with the two late goals and the subsequent delirium from them a tough one to take.
However I said in my preview piece, whatever the result, there was no need for either euphoria or meltdown and I haven’t changed my mind on that one after the event.
Here’s my thoughts on the game.
- It’s never nice to lose late, but on the balance of play Boro deserved to win. 2-0 flattered them a little, so if you forget the clearly offside second goal (I thought that at the game and was vindicated when I saw it on TV) then the result was fair.
- Boro are a machine of a team. I actually don’t think they have the quality of Derby but they are ridiculously well organised and their pressing is really something at this level. I don’t know if the extra game made a difference but certainly they out-ran us all afternoon and our creative players never got a sniff, being immediately surrounded by up to 5 red shirts every time they got on the ball. Leadbitter and George Friend in particular are outstanding players.
- Derby actually defended well. Boro were always going to have chances but the back four was solid and in fairness to Granty, aside from a couple of cracking flying saves which we know he can do, he was also nice and decisive and showed no hangover from his Leeds debacle.
- Losing Thorne so early was a blow and I think his composure would have really helped take the sting out of Boro for periods of the game. Hopefully he can rest up now for 2 weeks and come back firing.
- Going forward JR was by far our best player with Martin and Ince simply marked out the game. Those two have to do more in the big matches. On a couple of occasions he did get room to break, Ince seemed nervous and almost apprehensive of losing the ball (actually standing on it twice when moving into a good position) and wasn’t anything like as fluent as he has been of late. Jeff also twice got into good positions and didn’t have a shot when he could have.
- Clement has held his hand up and said his formation change cost us. I’m all for bold changes but 15 to go 0-0 away at Boro probably isn’t the time to ‘go for it’. Yes, we desperately needed Weimann or Bent to give us a different out ball (everything to Martin was coming straight back and the ref gave him nothing aside from a yellow card) but we should have just swapped out Martin and/or Ince about 10 minutes earlier. Talking of Ince, I do like him but I really don’t like the feeling that he is a bit untouchable when it comes to subs, no matter how he is playing.
- I saw a lot online last night about the need for another striker and I think I am now on board with that theory. All goalscorers go through purple and bad patches but I think the time is now right to buy a top striker to genuinely compete with Martin and give us a new threat.
- Note to Steve Gibson – If you want to get your attendances up, send some of your boys into town. Most of the boozers are streaming your games!
- Talking of lads in town, we had a couple of good conversations with the locals before and after, but we also saw lots of horrendous clichés. I think their fans have spent too much time watching hooligan you tube videos (through their CP company goggles) and not enough time in the shops. That town really is the land that time forgot.
So there you go, another defeat to Boro. It wasn’t great but it was very close and not the disaster that some would have you believe. Our main men can now take a 2 week break, we can re-group and don’t be surprised if Mel, Sam and Paul don’t already have a 10 o’clock in the recruitment office booked for Monday.
Come on you Rams!