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Matt the Shrimp

aka Harry Potter
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Messages
19,929
Location
Lewisham, London
Well, it's about the only time I get to start a "just got back" thread, so I thought I'd do it. Actually, I got back 30 minutes ago - one of the few redeeming features of tonight.

Random thoughts from the game...

* The approach to the ground... blimey, it's like something out of Mad Max - you're herded down a long passageway with tall metal fencing on either side from the station all the way to the away end. They really are a club apart, the Lions...!

* The ground - pretty impressive. Decent catering, albeit that they woefully underestimated the travelling numbers (I'd put us at about 1,300 tonight, at a guess), decent acoustic, and it'd be an amazing sight if the ground were full.

* Nicky Bailey. Blimey. How long can we hold onto him? Head and shoulders above anyone on the park, from either side. A truly sublime goal, on the volley, from the edge of the area (you really should catch the goal!), then, from the kick-off, a defensive header off the line. Supreme engine, always looking for the ball, anticipating movement, and finding space. I'm not sure another Southend player had a shot on goal all night - Bailey had three or four.

* And, er... that's it, really. We were poor tonight, really poor. We cannot ride on Bailey's shoulders to the playoffs, because that's how we looked tonight - a one-man team.

* The referee was abysmal, incidentally. Constantly swayed by the home fans and players, giving pretty much every 50/50 decision to Millwall, not even booking an appaling lunge / scythe on Black in the first half, and then sending off Scannell from what appeared to me (and admittedly, I had a poor view, being behind the melee of players) to be a one footed tackle in which he won the ball. I'm sure Cousin Weir will opine at far greater length on this subject in due course, but how clowns like that get to referee football league games is beyond my ken.

Ratings to follow.

Matt
 

Homer

R.I.P
Joined
Mar 2, 2004
Messages
1,062
Location
Hockley,Essex
spot on with regards to nicky bailey but accoding to paul clark on the radio
McCormack aws the other player was all over the field
 

seany t

President
Joined
May 11, 2006
Messages
3,566
We were ****e. There's no other word for it. I can't bring myself to rant and rave about it now as I've just wasted a good chunk of my evening doing that already, but we were dire.

The annoying thing is, they were SO bad too. We were just that much worse...

Bailey was very good (especially first half). Clarke was good too, except for giving away the freekick which led to their second goal. I personally thought our best player was Francis though. Ran the length of the pitch several times with the ball, put in several decent crosses, kept the ball intelligently when everyone else was just hoofing it long and won countless tricky headers with little or no cover around him.

Everyone else was abysmal. We had no centre midfield (Bailey was either attacking or last ditch defending, and Macca was absent all night). Gower was appalling I'm afraid to say, even as someone who likes the guy. Black had a mare, Scannell was never deservedly sent off but I failed to see how he or Moussa were going to change the game anyhow. Our forwards were terrible, and lacked any ability to hold the ball, run onto a ball, chase a ball or indeed spot one. And Mulgrew.... well...

The ref was bad, but we lost that game ourselves by not carrying on the way we started. A goal up and comfortable, to chasing the game.

Also, our bench COULD have helped us out tonight. Maher or Harrold would have loved it out there to slow the pace down. I counted about 3 moves in the whole second half where we found feet.

Right, I'm off to bed. See you all on Saturday for more of the same...
 

Matt the Shrimp

aka Harry Potter
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Messages
19,929
Location
Lewisham, London
Flahavan - 4. Had almost nothing to do, and what little he did was poor. No organisation at the corner for their first goal, no organisation of the wall and abysmal positioning for the second goal for the free kick, one punch, one decent shot-stop, and the vast majority of his kicks failed to reach a red shirt. How long do we have to wait for Clark Masters?

Francis - 7. Comfortable on the ball, shepherded his side well, came forward well. Beginning to look like the player we'd always hoped he would be.

Barrett - 5. Frequently lost the player he was marking, poor organisation, no attacking of the in-swinging ball at the set piece.

Clarke - 4. A couple of decent lunges / last-ditch clearances, but gave away the free kick which led to the second goal, and made some risibly poor forays forward late in the second half in order to try to rescue the game. A pretty woeful display all-round.

Mulgrew - 4. A bizarre performance. For the first half an hour, I was sitting there purring with delight, wondering how Tilly had unearthed this gem. Strong, quick, good in the tackle, some sublime passing, got forward, and seemed to be dealing well with Millwall's right wing - their most effective player by a distance, incidentally. And then, a ball was played forward by Millwall to the area he should have been defending... and whoosh, the most woeful airshot you've ever seen. Millwall got a corner, scored, and Mulgrew seemed almost instantly a broken man. Passes going astray, missing tackles, failing to track players. Oh dear. I'm happy to put it down to inexperience, and failing to deal with a clanger. He could be quite a good player, so let's give him time.

Black - 3. Woeful. On about half a dozen occasions in the first half, gifted Millwall possession in what could have been dangerous parts of the pitch. Had their confidence been any higher, they would have almost certainly punished us. Offered almost nothing going forward either.

McCormack - 5. Chased shadows most of the evening. Almost nothing of note to say about his performance, although he acted well as a buffer in front of defence in open play.

Bailey - 9. MoM by a country mile. A man amongst boys. Brilliant goal, ran the show in midfield, had more scoring opportunities, passed, moved, defended. Possibly the most complete midfielder I've seen in my time watching the Blues - he really is that good.

Gower - 7. Always looked to threaten, but was well-marshalled by the defence, who had clearly identified him as the danger-man.

Revell - 5. Not a great performance - but, unlike Wiggy, I'm not about to lambast a man who is still getting to know his team-mates. Has good physical presence, will win lots of flick-ons, and does look to get into the box... although he's worryingly one-paced (that pace being slow) and his close control isn't that good. Could come good and score goals, though - certainly seems to get into the right areas. Let's give him time, and not slaughter him unnecessarily in the way many have with Matt Harrold.

Macdonald - 6. Deft flick-on for Bailey's goal, and is clearly a nuisance - likes to get stuck in... although plays too deep, and is too often bullied off the ball, for my liking.

Scannell / Moussa - not on long enough for a rating (especially poor Damian, who should never have been sent off).

Ref - 1. Abysmal. See comments in previous post.

Crowd - 7 in the first half, 4 in the second.

Hey ho, that's enough waffling from me.

Matt
 

choggy

Coach
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Messages
561
Location
London
Very poor, particularly in the second half. We started quite brightly, moving the ball around and Nicky Bailey's goal was pure class, from where I was it was one of those shots that you knew was a goal from the moment he hit it.

And then it became the same old story, instead of pushing on we took our foot off the pedal and allowed Millwall back into it. Our defending was sloppy and we kept giving away free-kicks and corners and it was from of these that they scored, and to be honest you could see it coming.

So 1-1 at half-time and we were all hoping that the Blues would step it up a notch. Millwall were no great shakes and were definitely there for the taking.

But no, in fact the second half was abject. Passes went astray and we seemed to be on the back foot most of the time. it was no surprise when Millwall scored again, although Flav's will be disappointed not to keep it out, maybe he didn't see it late but he looked flat-footed and it wasn't a great free-kick.

And then that was that. Bailey's goal aside we hardly tested their keeper and you just knew it was going to be one of those games. The ref had no choice but to send Scannell off, he jumped into a tackle two footed and the laws say that's a red card. We had a bit of pressure at the end, but tbh never looked like scoring an equaliser.

Anyway, ratings:

Flavs: 6 - Looked flat-footed for their equaliser although apart from that was fairly solid
Mulgrew 6 - Looks quite good going forward, defensively was a bit suspect. Should have cleared the ball for the corner which lead to their goal
Barrett 6.5 - Committed as always, never really troubled by the Millwall attack
Clarke 7 - Another solid display from him.
Francis 6 - Like Mulgrew seems to be happier going forward than defending
Gower 6 - Largely absent again, didn't impose himself on the game at all
Bailey 8 MOM - Lovely strike for our goal and was a class above everybody else on the pitch.
McCormack 6.5 - Slightly disappointing, quiet game by his standards
Black 6.5 - Was quite bright and always looked a threat. His crossing let him down slightly
MacDonald 6 - Didn't make much of an impression at all. His inability to accelerate past a player was there for all to see
Revell 6 - Rarely troubled the defense, his first touch was poor and didn't win much in the air. On this display no better or worse that Harrold

Subs:

Scannell: 4 - Shocking tackle soon after coming on and his dismissal was the final nail in the coffin for the blues.
Moussa: 6 - Looked comfortable on the ball in the short time he was on

Ref: 6 - Bit fussy towards the end of the game but made the right decision with the red-card

Away Fans: 8 - They had to open some more of the ground up as we filled our original allocation. Top singing.

Millwall fans: 5 - First time I'd been to the Den, they only started singing when they were in the lead. There was about 20 kids in the corner nearest to us making throat-cutting gestures which was quite funny and their habit of not giving the ball back when it went into the crowd was just stupid.
 

Matt the Shrimp

aka Harry Potter
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Messages
19,929
Location
Lewisham, London
Oh, and I certainly agree with seany's assessment that Millwall were generally a poor outfit - or, more accurately, one with no confidence... but one or two decent players. I liked the look of their tricky right winger, and also of the centre-half with the shock of blond hair - tall and generally commanding, and dealt with embarrassing ease with pretty much all of our set pieces.

The damning stat for Messrs Brush & Austin to chew over tomorrow morning (as, presumably, defensive coaches)... Millwall really only had three or four clear-cut shots on goal all night, and they scored from two of them. Our set piece defending is utterly pathetic, and in no way fit to grace the Championship. We really have to sort it out, and very soon.

Final thought - the Harveys bitter in the Market Porter was sublime. I love that pub.

Matt
 
Joined
Jan 19, 2007
Messages
698
Well, it's about the only time I get to start a "just got back" thread, so I thought I'd do it. Actually, I got back 30 minutes ago - one of the few redeeming features of tonight.

Aaarrggh! Beat me to it!

Anyway, pretty much in agreement with all that was said. I actually thought Peter Clarke had another decent game tonight too and deserves a mention along with Bailey.

But after the goal what a terrible performance. Once again, a very poor team there for the taking and instead of pressing them, harrying them, taking the game to them, we sit back and invite them onto us. It's so frustrating to watch as we're not a good enough team defensively to play this way and we don't have quick players (of foot or mind) to do any damage on the break. So we had it coming in my eyes and deserved to lose. What makes me angry (and yes I know it's still only just an hour after the final whistle and I'm emotive right now) is that we had the players to win this match comfortably but we just appeared clueless in how to do so. And no substitution until far too late when the eleven on the pitch were doing nothing to show they could get back in the game!

Scannell's sending off was scandalous, one of the worst decisions I've seen, but I'm afraid affected the result in no way whatsoever.

Ratings:

Flavs: 6 - A couple of decent reaction saves but once again undone by two set pieces and he has to be culpable in part.

Francis: 7 - Seems to be maturing into the role.
Barrett: 5 - Oh dear. Lost his man for their goal, poor distribution and not commanding enough.
Clarke: 7 - Fast turning into the player that should stay in the side if Tilly ever wakes up to the fact we need a commanding centre-half to play alongside one of the current two.
Mulgrew: 6 - Still settling so will lay off him, but for every good thing he did, there was a bad thing to match it with.

Gower: 6 - Better than Saturday but not as influential as he needs to be.
McCormack: 5 - Is it just me or has Alan Mac been poor for quite a few games now? Rarely passed to a red shirt.
Bailey: 8 - All action, box to box and a great, great goal. Also was the only player to look like getting an equaliser with one header well saved towards the end.
Black: 6 - Not one of his better days. Huffed and puffed but failed to produce.

Charlie Mac: 5 - Not his game tonight. Too physical for him and was totally anonymous.
Revell: 6 - Won a few headers, lost quite a lot of headers. The poorest game he's had for us - and that's after two pretty average performances.

Subs:

Scannell: 4 - Touched the ball once (badly) and then got sent off (unjustly).
Moussa: 5 - No time to judge but failed to impress when he did get the ball in a useful counter-attacking position.

TILSON: 3 - Now, I am a huge fan of Tilson, and in no way is this a Tilly-out rant but we were depressingly clueless tonight. We created nothing and it was hard to see what he'd instilled in the players in an effort to win the game. To make a substitution so late in the game when the starting eleven were so ineffective was unbelievable.

Sorry, I'll have calmed down by the morning... :finger:
 

Staines Shrimper

Active member
Joined
Jan 19, 2007
Messages
596
Scannell: 4 - Shocking tackle soon after coming on and his dismissal was the final nail in the coffin for the blues.

are you serious, it was never a sending off in a million years. If Bowyer had a successful appeal after his tackle last weekend, i'd expect scannell's to be overturned too. never a red card.
 

Matt the Shrimp

aka Harry Potter
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Messages
19,929
Location
Lewisham, London
Aaarrggh! Beat me to it!

Come on, this is the only game in which I get to start the "just got back" thread... I'm pretty sure that I live closer to the Den than anyone else on here (about 3 miles away, for the record).

:p


TILSON: 3 - Now, I am a huge fan of Tilson, and in no way is this a Tilly-out rant but we were depressingly clueless tonight. We created nothing and it was hard to see what he'd instilled in the players in an effort to win the game. To make a substitution so late in the game when the starting eleven were so ineffective was unbelievable.

Sorry, I'll have calmed down by the morning... :finger:

I can't disagree with you. Black was abject this evening, and should have been subbed far earlier by Scannell, whose pace might actually have hurt them. I love Tilly, but he had a poor night tonight, and no mistake.

:(
 

choggy

Coach
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Messages
561
Location
London
are you serious, it was never a sending off in a million years. If Bowyer had a successful appeal after his tackle last weekend, i'd expect scannell's to be overturned too. never a red card.

Oh c'mon, he jumped in with two feet, the laws say that's a red. What made it even worse was that he took about a 10 yard run-up to it, it wouldn't have been out of place in the long-jump. The other thing was, he didn't need to get involved as there were several other blue shirts around the ball.
 
Joined
Sep 1, 2007
Messages
3,153
Location
touring Europe
Thought Gower was awful tonight! Francis I was was very impressed with. Home fans were scum, keeping the ball everytime it went into stand. Ref was abysmal, lino was blind.

Bailey scored a cracker all down hil after that.Defo need to sign another forward, revell is quite frankly poo .

Sorry for being negative but need to vent somewhere.
 

OldBlueLady

Junior Blues Coordinator⭐
Joined
Dec 27, 2007
Messages
48,102
Location
Benfleet
Been in about 10 minutes off the coach, just sitting down with a glass of Baileys to warm me up. I agree with pretty much of what's been said on here but for the record, these are my assessments as I saw it:

Flavs - 6 - thought he did ok. 1st goal was unlucky as he got a punch to it and it ricocheted in off Tommy Black, 2nd one, don't know if my eyes deceived me but it looked like the ball went under the wall, so how could he have allowed for that. Got in some decent stops.

Francis - 7 - one of only a few to emerge with any real credit, looked a decent attacking wing back but made a few simple and stupid errors.

Clarke - 7.5 - he was literally here, there and everywhere. Unfortunate in that he gave away both the corner from which they scored and the free kick (thought it was inside the area but the officials were so poor they obviously got that wrong too). Made some telling interceptions and attacked well.

Barrett - 6 - man-handles his man terribly and lucky to get away with it again this match. A few decent headers but again some poor positioning.

Mulgrew - 5.5 - like Francis looks good going forward but some very, very silly mistakes mixed with some intelligent play. A bit of an enigma so far.

Black - 6.5 - not as poor as some think. He and Francis look to have the beginnings of a good understanding. A bit blase with the ball at times resulting in possession being lost. Was completely hacked by their no.3 in 1st half, so don't know if he was suffering a little.

Macca - 6 - terribly wayward passing, either too long or too short or way off target. I'd have Maher back in this team like a shot.

Bailey - 8 - Yep. MoM for me too, great goal and gritty performance. Backed off from a few challenges mind.

Gower - 5 - not quite as bad as Saturday but still dire. He has to be dropped as he's a liability at present.

MaccyD - 6 - didn't look anywhere as near as comfortable as when playing alongside Barnard. Still ran tirelessly despite being elbowed in the back of the neck by the blond bombshell every time he went for a header.

Revell - 6 - not great, looked a bit gangly from my perspective.

Subs:
Scannell - 4 - yes it was a two footed lunge, but equally so was their guy, so if one went then the other should have too. Naive again I'm afraid, needs to mature a bit.

Moussa - 6 - looked ok when eventually he came on, quite assured.

Management - 5 - yes, the subs should have come on sooner. If Barnard wasn't fit then Harrold should have been in the squad. Tilly actually looked a little animated for once. Some of these players really need a good kick up the jacksy.

Officials - 1 - and that was for the guy on the right hand wing. Crap decisions all night.
 
Last edited:

wiggy

Darryl's Love Child
Joined
Oct 30, 2003
Messages
3,838
Thought Gower was awful tonight! Francis I was was very impressed with. Home fans were scum, keeping the ball everytime it went into stand. Ref was abysmal, lino was blind.

Bailey scored a cracker all down hil after that.Defo need to sign another forward, revell is quite frankly poo .

Sorry for being negative but need to vent somewhere.

Do you think Ron is fed up with his manager keep signing poo?
 
Joined
Jan 19, 2007
Messages
698
Management - 5 - yes, the subs should have come on sooner. If Barnard wasn't fit then Harrold should have been in the squad. Tilly actually looked a little animated for once. Some of these players really need a good kick up the jacksy.

What is still frustrating me, after this crucial, crucial game, is that it so stupendously obvious what we needed to do to win this game - especially without Barnard and without any pace in attack. It was to get in their faces, put a team low on confidence under pressure by keeping the ball when we have it and closing them down like buggery when they have it. After we went one up we just stopped doing this, lost any momentum we had and were never able to regain it...
 

Slipperduke

The Camden Cad
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
4,333
Location
North London
Well, you lot can moan all you like. That was about ten times as much fun as a Premier League game!

In a nutshell: I told you Bailey was good, didn't I? ; The ref was shocking; we haven't got the players to play the way we want to; we're very much a team in transition; we were spoiled with Goater and Eastwood; Francis is much improved; football's much better when you don't have to write everything that happens down; we can be proud of our support; Millwall's fans seem to be entirely made up of ASBOs and why didn't the catering team bring any food for half-time?

God bless you all and goodnight.
 

ldnfatso

Red Rep King!
Joined
Aug 12, 2005
Messages
6,390
Location
Southend
Tonight was absolutely diabolical! We started well, got a great early goal and then gave up! Admittedly the officials were atrocious but we cannot blame them entirely. It was us that played like c***s and we deserved nothing from the game. Millwall are a pretty poor team themselves and if they think otherwise they are kidding themselves.

I am actually amazed that after the last 2 performances Mulgrew and Revell were snapped up by anyone, both look useless! Tommy Black turned in a poo performance after possibly his best one last Saturday v Hartlepool. Nicky Bailey continues to carry the team, as MTS says how long can we keep him??
Bar the above everybody else was a modest 4/10 in my view, far below what is expected of them.
 
Joined
Nov 19, 2007
Messages
505
Location
Shenfield
Flahavan 5
Francis 7
Mulgrew 5
Clarke 7
Barrett 6
Black 5
Gower 5
McCormack 5
Bailey 8
Revell 5
McDonald 5

I think thats being quite kind... we lacked anything up front! Missed Barnard big time!!! This kind of performance where we couldn't keep the ball begs the question... where is Maher??? Also debating whether Hooper may actually be better than either of our front 2 this evening?!

Couldn't believe Scannel got sent off for that... shocking decision! I waited up to see the replay on Sky but they cut it out and announced the player sent off was Zak Whitbred?!? Brilliant. No point appealing as always in our league they won't really look at it - could even get extended.
 
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