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Opinion in the cold light of day


Life President
Oct 27, 2003
I don't get to the Hall any more really due to family and work etc, but thank goodness for iFollow as I can at least watch full matches back and I know its not the same as watching a game live, but still happy to be able to watch a full 90 mins.

I've just watched the Blackpool game back and have a few unpopular opinions I would think šŸ¤£

1) I certainly don't get the hate for Bond. I think he's done decent business in the window and done it well with due diligence for a change. Throwing Ridgewell in was a mistake which he's acknowledged, but thats a different issue. I make him right in the interview post game too, you can tell he was trying to pick his words, but the anger in Cox and Humps performance came through. What do fans want? Load of waffle like Brown - fans moan. Honest opinion from Bond - fans moan. We just have the most moan-y fans I've ever come across.

2) I didnt think we were THAT bad in the 1st half vs Blackpool. I was expecting the worst with many on here saying it was one of the worst performances in a half they've ever seen. Maybe you've not been watching Southend as long as I have! But thought we tried to get it down and actually put some good stuff together. The problem is a lack of threat/confidence at the moment.

Conversely, when SZ'ers said we were "much improved" second half, again, I thought the opposite?! Thought we were woeful and far worse than the first half. Robinson coming on was a bad call as he is awful with the ball at his feet. Multiple times his first touch was a tackle, let alone his second. That said, I'm an advocate of Robbo which you will see in a bit.

3) Have to agree again with Bonds assessment of the players from Saturday. Thought Shaughnessy and Lennon were decent enough, Ralph did ok and put some decent balls in. I thought Hutch looked way out of his depth though at times - bit like a deer in headlights and just looked to offload the ball soon as he got it, but grew into it a bit and think we could persist with him. And yes, Cox and particularly Humps were awful.

With what we have available, I don't know why we don't go 442 but with a diamond as we don't have width and also don't want to see Milligan exposed in a flat midfield 2. So something like;

Oxley/Bishop (either or, both have good and bad points)
Elvis (till Demi is fit)

Milligan (anchoring)
Hyam and Mantom in front of Millgan
Hutchinson in front of them

Robinson/Goodship (or Ndakwu)

I'm a big fan of movement up front and really think Cox and Humpfrys are sooooo easy to defend against. They not gonna beat anyone for pace, not going to do anything clever, so defenders must realise within 2 minutes of starting they are in for a pretty easy time. Where my thinking for Robinson is that pace scares players and ok he's not great on the ball, but as an option over the top, a defender is always going to be afraid of getting beaten. I'd probably never play Cox & Humps together again if I could help it.

Thats why Ndakwu is an option up front. Same reasons - flair, pace, something unpredictable that is going to make a defender uncomfortable. Maybe give him license to drift away from the centre and get between full back and centre half. And before anyone says "He's a winger, not a striker" didnt a certain S.Collymore play as a winger at Palace before he came to us? From what I've seen of Ndakwu in the clips, he knows where the goal is.

So there.... thats my early season hot take. Too early to be taking pops at Bond. Lets see if we can get a midfielder over the line, its obviously an area Bond wants to strenghthen and on the evidence of the 2 games so far, we really need it.

Hopefully Bond see's sense and switches to a 442 though. I had no problems with 532, but not sure the players liked it and no point having Milligan anchoring with 3 behind him...