Pretty even half, after a poor first fifteen minutes. We had probably had the best chances prior to the goal, which was very poor defensively, but looked offside. Miller looks a handful and has had a couple of good shots on goal, Perkins quiet but a couple of nice through balls. Need to get to get something here.
Superb from Rovers. We were the only team in it second half. Really solid performance. All worked hard, Miller looks good up front and Perkins a real hard worker, battling for every ball. Much needed three points away from home.
Some surprising results elsewhere; Mansfield losing at home to Yeovil and Morecambe featuring Ritchie Sutton getting a draw at Exeter. This league is unpredictable, but if we can steer clear of injuries. maybe bring one or two more in, still in with a decent chance of the play-offs.
Sounded like we had a lot more of the play in the second half, without changing personnel at h/t. Those in attendance might be able to throw some light on how this came about.
I find it all quite depressing really. You did not get thrashings of that size when lower division clubs played top sides twenty or thirty years ago, and it just shows how much wealth is concentrated at the top now. Impossible for most PL clubs to compete with the top four or five, let alone us.
So true RLC. I suppose we shoule bare in mind that lower division team wrte playing the best playets in tje UK not so long ago, but nowadays with the money in the Prem, we are playing many of the top talent in the world. I don't think the lower divisions have gon backward.
Because of the wages at the top we rarely get top players coming down the divisions. Rovers used to get a regular flow of experienced players from Liverpool, Everton and elsewhere. No need for them to do that now. Too much money at the top!
A great result, which did not look likely at half time in all honesty. While we had the better chances, I thought Cheltenham were the better side in the first period in terms of shape and possession. They are a reasonable side now, which makes this result all the more impressive. After half time we just seemed to be more aggressive and play ten yards further up the pitch, and we completely outplayed them in the end.
In the first half I thought we were too deep at times, and allowed Cheltenham to progress too close to our eighteen yard box before we pressed them; that was how the first goal arose when Maddox, their best player, was given too much time on the ball and was allowed to thread a ball through, albeit the goal looked offside to me. After half time we pressed more aggressively, and the service from the midfield, particularly Banks, was excellent, and the Cheltenham back four could not cope with the power and movement of Norwood and Miller. We should have scored five or six really.
Individually, I thought Miller was a real handful: strong, powerful, not particularly subtle, but with decent movement and certainly unafraid to have a shot at goal. He is not a conventional target man, more the sort of Showunmi / Savage type, but in fifteen minutes you could see he offers more goal threat than Stockton. Perkins took a while to get going, but always seemed to find space and time on the ball. He did not do anything spectacular but kept the ball moving with simple passes and rarely gave it away. Elsewhere, I thought Banks was absolutely superb, both with the control he gave us to protect the defence and his raking, defence-splitting passes. Caprice, McCullough and Mullin also had good games, while Ellis was immense at the back once again.
I don't want to end on a negative, nor do I want to single players out, but the left back position does concern me. The Cheltenham right winger Broom was a decent player but no world beater, but Ridehalgh really struggled to deal with him. At times he was too far off him to put him under any pressure; on other occasions he was too tight and got skinned. Too many balls came into our box from that wing and I think that is one position where we still need further improvements.
Seen the goals now and Caprice for the equaliser and Mullin for the third both with significant assists.
If we've a problem at left-back maybe Fleetwood will loan us Eddie Clarke back, he hasn't had an appearance for them yet. Would broadly share RLCs concerns regarding Ridehalgh. Who was operating on the left side of midfield and could they have stopped the supply of balls to their right-winger?