Saturday, January 01, 2011
The Low Anthem - Apothecary - A Take Away Show from La Blogotheque on Vimeo.
At the risk of sounding a bit shrill, Blues were horrible tonight. There will be those who will say we competed quite well in the first half and that if we hadn't been victims of some very bad refereeing, the whole dynamic of the game may have been different, and they would probably be right, but we would still have been horrible, because, lets face it, we are horrible. To an extent, being horrible is OK, and it can be hilarious when you are beating Chelsea, but I have had enough of it.
Regardless of the ref, we would never have won that game. As Steve Forbert sings, you cannot win, if you do not play, and we do not play. We attempt to stop the opposition playing, but we don't really play ourselves. This is not just about today, this is us. Every week, whoever the opponent is. For me, our style is barely tolerable even when we don't lose, but finding ourselves in the drop zone, has put me in a bad mood. This shitty style clearly isn't working, so why persist with it?
Eck said something the other day about Barcelona and Arsenal and the way they pass and retain possession and alluded to the fact that we cannot expect to emulate that style with the players we have. It is obvious that he does not trust our players to do anything other than fight like dogs. We only ever commit men forward after we have conceded. We play a percentage game of harrying and pressing the opposition into mistakes or fouls, we play for territory. It's like watching fucking rugby. Punt it upfield and try and win the second phase
As Steve Forbert also sang, it doesn't have to be this way. Other teams with limited players show this on a weekly basis. Blackpool take the game to the opposition, and, my oh my, they score goals. Bolton have been transformed by Owen Coyle and are much more pleasing on the eye than they once were. Both teams are comfortably ahead of us in the table. Mainz are a team of extremely hard working artisans, but are very direct when they have the ball and are doing brilliantly in Germany. I refuse to believe that our players are incapable of attacking with a bit more purpose.
We are in a situation where we are playing unlovely football, losing games and have been travelling with Plummet Airlines to the foot of the table. Eck speaks highly of the team spirit and the work ethic, but it takes more than that. He has to have more confidence in them, he has to let the off the leash a bit. Playing 5 defensive midfielders is humiliating. If he doesn't trust the regulars, he should try others. Hleb isn't getting a start, Michel had disappeared off the face of the earth, Zigic can't get a start, Derbyshire may as well turn up in pyjamas, because he sure as shit isn't going to get anywhere near the pitch, Phillips is only ever allowed 10 minutes or less.
The sad fact is that the players are failing, the defence isn't as good as it is cracked up to be (look at the stats for goals conceded from set pieces if you don't believe me) the midfield cannot create chances, nor hang on to the ball to relieve pressure and our main striker couldn't score in a barrel of fannies. Yet players that Eck has bought, presumably having done his famous due diligence, can't get a game. It is baffling.
The window is open, we need to bring some talent in, but, if Eck doesn't play the new guys, or if he doesn't change our mind set, it won't matter who he brings in, because we will be fucked.