• Virtual match ticket - Papa Johns Trophy final

    Guest, you can now purchase a virtual match ticket for the Papa John's trophy final against Sunderland.. All donations go towards charity and help support the local community. Click here to get your virtual ticket!

League Two Rovers v Stevenage

Boz

Member
Joined
30 Sep 2005
Messages
6,233
Fav Player
Iain Hume
The problem with performances and results like this is that we are already playing catch-up after the poor start under Mike Jackson and the wobbly period around Christmas. Having just made our way into the automatic spots we needed to stay there and instead turn in a very below par performance letting Stevenage dictate how the game was played and earn a deserved 3 points.

Rovers were below par across the park. Both full-backs were stifled and struggled to get much movement started on the flanks. This got worse after Lloyd was taken off. Khan reverted to tricks to try and get out of trouble, thought he'd cut that out, though again nothing fatal. Manny did most of the defensive stuff right, but then pumped a lot of aimless balls upfield. Lloyd was probably the stand-out player up the field, can exempt Vaughan as he saw so little of the ball, so why was he the one to be hooked first? Would like KH to explain his thinking on that. Things went downhill from that point. None of the subs advanced their cause at all. Morris, one decent tackle aside was anonymous, Kirby and Jolley looked out of their depth, which given Nya's pedigree was disappointing from him.
 
Joined
1 Oct 2005
Messages
4,222
Fav Player
Alan King, Barry Dyson
However, I am being cautious and predicting a 1-1 draw, as I think the visitors are a good away side. I hope I'm being pessimistic.
Sorry, guys. I was being optimistic. :(

Seriously, it could have been a lot worse. It wasn’t losing points to a rival. And Cambridge and Newport also lost. Let’s get over it and take it out on Grimsby on Saturday.
 
Joined
15 Mar 2010
Messages
9,060
Fav Player
Jason Koumas / John Morrissey
The problem with performances and results like this is that we are already playing catch-up after the poor start under Mike Jackson and the wobbly period around Christmas. Having just made our way into the automatic spots we needed to stay there and instead turn in a very below par performance letting Stevenage dictate how the game was played and earn a deserved 3 points.

Rovers were below par across the park. Both full-backs were stifled and struggled to get much movement started on the flanks. This got worse after Lloyd was taken off. Khan reverted to tricks to try and get out of trouble, thought he'd cut that out, though again nothing fatal. Manny did most of the defensive stuff right, but then pumped a lot of aimless balls upfield. Lloyd was probably the stand-out player up the field, can exempt Vaughan as he saw so little of the ball, so why was he the one to be hooked first? Would like KH to explain his thinking on that. Things went downhill from that point. None of the subs advanced their cause at all. Morris, one decent tackle aside was anonymous, Kirby and Jolley looked out of their depth, which given Nya's pedigree was disappointing from him.
We are now fourth in the league, so we have 'caught up' with our rivals. It is now a nineteen / twenty game season to see who wins promotion. All that matters is that we are in the automatic spots after 46 games.

We can't win every game and, as BBTC points out, at least we did not lose to a rival.
 
Joined
24 Jul 2017
Messages
3,173
Fav Player
aldo
think sat won't be on its going to freeze over the next few nights hope it is on wait and see
 

Boz

Member
Joined
30 Sep 2005
Messages
6,233
Fav Player
Iain Hume
We are now fourth in the league, so we have 'caught up' with our rivals. It is now a nineteen / twenty game season to see who wins promotion. All that matters is that we are in the automatic spots after 46 games.

We can't win every game and, as BBTC points out, at least we did not lose to a rival.

If we beat all our rivals but lose to all the teams in the bottom half of the table, we're unlikely to go up. I agree we can't win every game, as the table shows we've already lost 9, more than any of the other teams in the promotion/play-off spots.
 
Joined
15 Mar 2010
Messages
9,060
Fav Player
Jason Koumas / John Morrissey
If we beat all our rivals but lose to all the teams in the bottom half of the table, we're unlikely to go up. I agree we can't win every game, as the table shows we've already lost 9, more than any of the other teams in the promotion/play-off spots.
We have not lost to all the teams in the bottom half though, have we ? We are the form team in the last fifteen matches, irrespective of the occasional, inevitable defeat. If that form is replicated in the next fifteen games, we will be promoted.
 

Boz

Member
Joined
30 Sep 2005
Messages
6,233
Fav Player
Iain Hume
We have not lost to all the teams in the bottom half though, have we ? We are the form team in the last fifteen matches, irrespective of the occasional, inevitable defeat. If that form is replicated in the next fifteen games, we will be promoted.
Neither have we beaten all our rivals. Should defeats be inevitable? Though any more performances like tonight's and they will be...
 
Joined
15 Mar 2010
Messages
9,060
Fav Player
Jason Koumas / John Morrissey
Neither have we beaten all our rivals. Should defeats be inevitable? Though any more performances like tonight's and they will be...
Defeats are inevitable unless you expect us to repeat the performances of the Preston and Arsenal invincibles, probably a naïve proposition for a Tranmere supporter......

We have beaten enough of our rivals to be the best performing team in the division under Dawes / Hill.
 

Sparky

Member
Joined
8 Sep 2009
Messages
3,427
Fav Player
Chris Greenacre
Post match interview will be interesting. Keith can be a bit prickly at times and won’t take kindly to any questions suggesting the wheels have come off.
One defeat doesn’t worry me but it was more the disappointment from the options from the bench.

we have a massive squad but do we have the strength in depth in attacking areas? We need Nugent fit and hopefully that won’t take long as otherwise we shouldn’t have signed him
 
Joined
15 Mar 2010
Messages
9,060
Fav Player
Jason Koumas / John Morrissey
I think the jury is out on the new signings. Kirby was very good against Peterborough last week, but did not deal with the physicality of the game tonight. Jolley looked very raw indeed. It is difficult for young players to be thrown into a game where the senior players around them are performing badly, so I think they deserve more time. However, that does beg the question of whether having youngsters on the bench is sufficient.

I thought Crawford looked OK in the first half and his delivery from corners was good.
 

Sparky

Member
Joined
8 Sep 2009
Messages
3,427
Fav Player
Chris Greenacre
I think the jury is out on the new signings. Kirby was very good against Peterborough last week, but did not deal with the physicality of the game tonight. Jolley looked very raw indeed. It is difficult for young players to be thrown into a game where the senior players around them are performing badly, so I think they deserve more time. However, that does beg the question of whether having youngsters on the bench is sufficient.

I thought Crawford looked OK in the first half and his delivery from corners was good.

yes I agree. The bench was weak today if we wanted to attack better with inexperienced youngsters and 3 defenders. Morris made sense coming in but looked devoid of confidence. I don’t want to question recruitment but are inexperienced kids and unfit senior players what we need for promotion? Who knows how match fit Crawford is having not played much for Bolton and Nugent isn’t ready yet.
 

Sparky

Member
Joined
8 Sep 2009
Messages
3,427
Fav Player
Chris Greenacre
Keith not happy with the conditions which I can understand. Maybe having some pace thru the middle would have helped us playing more direct.

clearly not happy we didn’t keep a clean sheet and mentions a mistake for their goal. I’ll have to look at it again but if it was manny then question marks over him given his woeful distribution and the fact that Sid and Ray did ok recently and I think rides could easily play left sided centre back. Clearly Ellis isn’t fancied by the gaffer
 

Boz

Member
Joined
30 Sep 2005
Messages
6,233
Fav Player
Iain Hume
Defeats are inevitable unless you expect us to repeat the performances of the Preston and Arsenal invincibles, probably a naïve proposition for a Tranmere supporter......

We have beaten enough of our rivals to be the best performing team in the division under Dawes / Hill.
We've already lost more games than some promoted sides manage in a season. That, in itself, isn't a barrier to going up, as it depends on how well everyone else does. However, I'd hoped that we could have extended the unbeaten run for a few more games, before the more difficult fixtures then scheduled. Get the impression that you think tonight was just a blip? What troubled me was the 3 substitutions KH opted for made things worse.

I thought Crawford was ok, shot on target, one nice lay-off, corners not bad though not Feeney standard. Morris has been frozen out, low on confidence and not given a start with Feeney out, but it was a puzzle that Lloyd was the player he replaced, when Danny was battling and trying to make things happen. As I think Sparky identified earlier, this wasn't the type of game for Kirby to make an impact and he didn't. Jolley was hard to judge because of the circumstances, however the little I've seen of Jake Burton suggests more pace and more direct than Charlie was tonight.
 
Joined
15 Mar 2010
Messages
9,060
Fav Player
Jason Koumas / John Morrissey
It was Manny who made a slight mistake for the goal. His distribution was terrible tonight, but he has been excellent recently so it is unfair to be too critical.

It was evident watching the game that the pitch was starting to freeze, as the ball was bobbling everywhere. That did affect us more than Stevenage, as we are a passing side.
 

Boz

Member
Joined
30 Sep 2005
Messages
6,233
Fav Player
Iain Hume
Keith not happy with the conditions which I can understand. Maybe having some pace thru the middle would have helped us playing more direct.

clearly not happy we didn’t keep a clean sheet and mentions a mistake for their goal. I’ll have to look at it again but if it was manny then question marks over him given his woeful distribution and the fact that Sid and Ray did ok recently and I think rides could easily play left sided centre back. Clearly Ellis isn’t fancied by the gaffer
Did he give an explanation for the substitutions? Think one of the defenders could have tried to close the scorer down more, but it didn't strike me as a glaring error by Manny on first glance. My commentary had died then, so wasn't sure what Steve McNulty thought of it.
 
Joined
15 Mar 2010
Messages
9,060
Fav Player
Jason Koumas / John Morrissey
We've already lost more games than some promoted sides manage in a season. That, in itself, isn't a barrier to going up, as it depends on how well everyone else does. However, I'd hoped that we could have extended the unbeaten run for a few more games, before the more difficult fixtures then scheduled. Get the impression that you think tonight was just a blip? What troubled me was the 3 substitutions KH opted for made things worse.

I thought Crawford was ok, shot on target, one nice lay-off, corners not bad though not Feeney standard. Morris has been frozen out, low on confidence and not given a start with Feeney out, but it was a puzzle that Lloyd was the player he replaced, when Danny was battling and trying to make things happen. As I think Sparky identified earlier, this wasn't the type of game for Kirby to make an impact and he didn't. Jolley was hard to judge because of the circumstances, however the little I've seen of Jake Burton suggests more pace and more direct than Charlie was tonight.
I have no idea whether tonight's defeat was a blip or not, but that is really the whole point. It is reasonable to react negatively to a succession of defeats and poor performances, but it is unreasonable to believe we will NEVER put in a disappointing performance or lose a game.

I think everybody is disappointed by the result, but it is not in itself a catastrophe. We are level on points with a team in the automatic places with nineteen games to play. Nothing has been decided. If we were in Cheltenham's position, we would not be guaranteed promotion.
 

Sparky

Member
Joined
8 Sep 2009
Messages
3,427
Fav Player
Chris Greenacre
Did he give an explanation for the substitutions? Think one of the defenders could have tried to close the scorer down more, but it didn't strike me as a glaring error by Manny on first glance. My commentary had died then, so wasn't sure what Steve McNulty thought of it.
Only saying that some players (I assume he meant the ones he took off), were struggling with the conditions and concentrating on getting the bobbling ball under control instead of thinking of the next pass. But he could have put Woolery thru the middle with Vaughan and perhaps gone 4-4-2 just to try something different. He seemed more annoyed we didn’t keep the clean sheet but as RLC says, manny has been part of a winning team up to tonight, although not sure how many clean sheets we’ve had of late
 
Joined
15 Mar 2010
Messages
9,060
Fav Player
Jason Koumas / John Morrissey
I would guess in the cases of Lloyd and Woolery, Hill was also considering the accumulation of games, what the fitness coaches are telling him, and Saturday's match at Grimsby. The substitutions did not work, but those high energy players will have to be rested at times given the heavy schedule.
 

bigmart

bigmart
Member
Joined
29 Jul 2009
Messages
3,371
Fav Player
Ian Muir
They hit balls down the channels and over the top in the second half whilst we just aimlessly hoofed ut up for their centre halves to constantly win in the air quite why we did try what they were trying was strange.

Think Saturday game will be off leaving a bit of a gap till the next league game, at least Feeney should be back quickly and we could do with Nugent fit soon.
 
Joined
1 Oct 2005
Messages
4,222
Fav Player
Alan King, Barry Dyson
I agree we can't win every game, as the table shows we've already lost 9, more than any of the other teams in the promotion/play-off spots.
You could also point out that no team has won more matches than us except for Cambridge, who have played more. In fact, if we had won last night, we would have been the only team to have won more than half our league games.

Last night's results (ours and everybody else's) show that there are no standout teams. Everyone can beat anyone. What odds whipping boys Southend would have won at early promotion favourites Newport? In the end, it will come down to having the best squad/manager with adjustments for luck with injuries, postponements and refereeing decisions. On our side is the investment in a large, quality playing staff led by an experienced manager playing on a decent home pitch (when it's not frozen!), We can cope with a few injuries and Covid cases, and I don't think that on balance refereeing decisions have cost us this season.

All in all, last night's results have not in any way dented my confidence that we will go up this season.
 
Top