Having bought a season ticket on a poor wage for the first time in years and waking up at 6.50am on Saturday because I was just simply too excited it pains me to be writing this blog with huge disappointment.
I have already said that I am optimistic this season and I am definitely not judging the team after one game but following all the hype and the promises from Dave Flitcroft that the team will fight and fight and give anybody a game I was a bit deflated at 4.45pm on Saturday.
The 4-0 beating by Wigan brought mixed reactions from Reds fans on Radio Sheffield’s Praise or Grumble with one saying the performance was brain dead. Now I can honestly say that I sit on the fence with their opinions and meet them half way.
Personally Wigan Athletic were a class team, you can tell they are a Premier League outfit – constant closing down, accurate passing and lethal in front of goal, however I do feel that our boys did let them play a little too much and gave them too much respect. The first half we defended exceptionally well in my opinion but just had nothing to go forward while in the second half we just didn’t turn up.
I have seen the Dale Jennings tackle since and believe he was extremely unlucky to be shown straight red and I also feel that Wigan’s Ben Watson should have been booked for persistent fouling in the first half alone never mind when he man-handled Jennings after the incident.
Before the dismissal I thought the game as a whole was a decent spectacle even though we were 2-0 down and I am convinced that had the referee not intervened to ruin that, then the scoreline wouldn’t have been so flattering. It’s always a case of sticking up for the big guns which is why teams like us never catch a break, yes we deserved to lose but not heavily.
When it comes to individual performances O’Grady’s tenacity and effort impressed me as well as Goldbourne’s running and passing. Steele made a few good saves and kept the score down somewhat while Mellis looked like the only player on our team with the skill and technical ability to match the Latics.
I would also like to know who picks the man of the match because for me, and I do rate him usually, David Perkins had a nightmare. He wanted the ball for too long and kept getting caught in possession and while this might work against some of the so called lower teams in the league, when we are playing top quality we need to learn that we haven’t got much time on the ball.
Just to sum up, it was a bitterly disappointing afternoon following the summer but I still believe we have enough to stay clear of danger and if Flicker brings in the talented striker he promised then we should look a more balanced team.
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