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Just Back v Burton
04 November 2017 18:26 Post ID: #1559758
Legend MO
20002000252525
A really poor game and a poor performance and an absolutely diabolical ref.

The tone of the game was set in the first two minutes. We started brightly, the ball was pushed down the line to AOB who cut inside and hit a firm shot directly at their keeper. The ball got pushed up to Sordell and he out jumped Craig and knocked the ball on. Fortunately nothing came of it. We were playing league one hoofball and getting little joy. Morison was having his own private battle with their bruising CB and after about ten minutes there was a clash of heads between the two of them. Their bloke got extensive treatment on the pitch and ended up with a mass of tape around his head. What he couldn't go off for treatment only the ref knows. And believe me, he didn't know too much.

The tone was set and Morison and the turban man had more battles and the emphasis was more about the battle rather than the game. They were poor. They had two banks of four, a player just in front of midfield and Sordell playing solo up front. They had two players tight on Saville and bottled up the middle. However, we did create two chances of note. Morison made a good run down the left and eventually the ball was pushed across where Wallace had a swing and a miss and only saved his blushes as it hit their bloke and went off for a corner. Another good move down the left saw a good cross, a firm shot by Wallace which AOB managed to divert over the bar from three yards. My mate said to me that the first half was missable and it could only get better. We shall see!

We came out full of endeavour and an early cross hit the side netting. We continued to play hoof ball and it was meat and drink go their back four. As busy as we were there was a distinct lack of quality in the final third. We were not winning second balls and the ref was punishing fair tackles even though there was nothing malicious in the challenges. Elliott realised that his chance should come soon and was running up and down the line like a man possessed. Surely his opportunity would come sooner rather than later. And then came the pivotal moment. They broke away, the LB got the ball ahead of Wallace who made an attempt to win it back from behind. His tackle was late and was worthy of a yellow but the ref pulled out a red and we were down to ten. The Den fell silent. Even Clough looked at Harris and said he couldn't believe it! Then the Den got raucous and the players flung themselves into challenges urged on by a hostile crowd. Off went Morison and AOB and on came Elliott and Thompson. We pressed them back but we're having little joy. The ball would not fall for us and they soaked up the pressure.

Then they broke in the middle. Their bloke delayed his cross into the box and....inevitably....there was Sordell to provide the final touch for a scrappy goal. They went nuts. We continued to press and force the issue by bringing on Fred for Meredith and launch the ball into their box. At the very death Fred and Gregory forced their way through and with the last kick of the game Gregory hit the post. It was all a frustrating and disappointing game between two poor sides and a diabolical ref.

Archer had little to do other than pick the ball out of the back of the net. McLaughlin had one of his less effective games and made a real howler of a tackle which left Dyer free to cross the ball but nothing came of it. Meredith worked hard but his forward movement brought little reward. Hutch stuck to his task manfully and probably shaded MOM for his endeavour and attitude. Craig was a poor example of leadership, skills and quality and can have no complaints if he warms the bench for the rest of the season.

Wallace looked lively and threatening but was guilty of a poor swing and a miss in the first 45 and honestly did not deserve his red card. Saville battle hard but was swallowed up by their tackling. He has more quality but didn't have the space to show it. Tunniclife ran hard but other than a shot over the bar from distance did not produce much. AOB looked good to start with but faded badly.
Up front was where we really lost it. Morison was more interested in winning his personal battle with his marker at the expense of the team play. He should have made way for Elliot much earlier. Gregory played his normal all action game but he got swamped by a giant CB who gave little ground. Our forward play was poor and the two chances we had we failed to convert. And neither fell to our front two.
Elliot played his heart out and definitely dominated his marker but he never really got a direct chance. Thompson looked busy but created very little and Fred's raw pace almost made a goal at the death for Gregory but not quite. In fact, it was that kind of afternoon.........almost.....but not quite. There is a lot of work to happen in the international break if we are not to see another woeful performance like this.
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04 November 2017 19:49 Post ID: #1559769 - in reply to #1559758
Legend MO
2000200025
Last week I said we were tactically bankrupt which was countered by the argument that we had just taken a point away to a team that was at the top of the division, unbeaten at home and had been scoring goals for fun.

This week I'm saying that attack wise we are tactically bankrupt and I'm waiting for that to be countered by the argument that we have just lost to a team 2nd from bottom, with the worst goals for in the division, worst goals against in the division, had not scored away since August and had picked up a single point on their travels

Our attacking tactics are as follows:

1. Gain possession in own half; move forward and launch long diagonal balls at Morison's head in hope he heads one on for Gregory and maybe AOB to run onto.
2. When ball goes out of play for a throw-in; launch a long throw down the line at Morison's head in hope he heads one onto Gregory, AOB or Wallace. 2nd prize, win another throw-in and repeat.
3. Corners float to far or near post in hope the ball is headed on or across the goal although today I did notice a variation when the corner was played along the ground for the on-rushing MacLaughlin shoot, but unfortunately it came to nought because of a foul.
4. Attacking Variations
a. Play to to Wallace and hope he can beat the full-back in a foot race and centre.
b. Play to AOB and pray he does something!

It's all so predictable. Anybody who has played football as a defender in any level will tell you the easiest teams to defend against are those that do the same thing over and over again. That's us.

I agree the sending off was a bad decision but that shouldn't detract from another poor display.

I said I would have started with Elliott and Fergie and believe if we had the game would have been over in the 1st 20 minutes.

Silver mentions AOB's early cut-in and shot that was comfortably gathered by Bywater. Possibly he was down the other end of the pitch and didn't appreciate that Meredith had made a terrific overlap and all AOB had to do was lay the ball off and Meredith would have been behind them and bearing down on the byline. AOB's finishing is good but the rest of his play is poor. He never lays the ball off 1st time; always tries to take a player on and invariably cuts inside. When he plays LM our left flank is toothless.

When was the last time we attacked a team down the middle? We don't. The team lacks creativity.

What I find especially galling is that at the start of the season we were playing terrific mixed up football and, although we weren't getting the results we deserved, we looked dangerous. In recent games we have reverted to our League 1 form of last season and really don't look like creating a clear opening.

So there's my opinion again. Please shot me down and tell me where I'm getting it wrong!

BTW: It was my intention to go to Sunderland but after our recent performances I've decided to give it a miss. No I'm not a fair weather support. Up until Sheffield Wednesday I'd seen every game this season and wasn't overly put off by the away results because I thought our performances were decent. But I'm not prepared to fork out circa £70, get up at 4:00am and return home probably after midnight to watch a similar performance to today's.

I'm one unhappy camper
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04 November 2017 20:08 Post ID: #1559770 - in reply to #1559758
GeroniMO
100050010025
Can't argue with any of that, we're really seeing now how thin our squad is, a couple of big injuries and suspensions and we are hoofing it again, if we had Webster and Williams we would have won comfortably. Reading Harris's comments, sounds like he is losing patience with the front two and no amount of "Morison brings so much more than goals" and "Gregory runs his socks off" can hide the fact that Morison is in the worst goalscoring form of he's career and Gregory never looks like scoring at this level.

I fear if we don't break our transfer record in January for a striker who knows where the fucking goal is we will be staring at relegation!!
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04 November 2017 20:11 Post ID: #1559772 - in reply to #1559758
Legend MO
2000200050025
I don't think you can compare getting an away point against the side with the best defensive record in the division with failing to score against probably the weakest defence in the League.

I thought our tactics last week away from home against Cardiff City were absolutely spot on. That didn't make us tactically bankrupt.

However, having got that point it would be ridiculous for us to play the same way at home against Burton Albion. If he did then NH is doing himself, the club and players no favours at all. And would suggest that you have more than a point...for this match.

We have enough quality in that side to play the ball on the deck and hurt teams. Both you and I, Parsley, have made the loudest noise over the last two years that NH has to learn to mix his game up. Neither of us are advocates of simply shelling the ball forward. From what i heard, it appeared that he had earlier this season brought a more expansive game to Millwall.

Now, if today is anything to go by he's reverting to type...and that will not do in this division.

You can bring in as many strikers as you like. And of Premiership quality. But if you are going to serve them with hoof-ball rather than intelligent moves they simply won't score goals. This is not trying to protect Gregory or anyone else. A side that plays one dimensionally is a damn sight easier to defend against than one where you are left guessing at what is coming at you next...




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04 November 2017 20:23 Post ID: #1559774 - in reply to #1559758
Supreme MO
500020001000500252525
Sorry lads, but after the defeat against Sheffield Wednesday I shrugged my shoulders - but today's result against Burton,, well, that's the final straw,

V
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04 November 2017 20:28 Post ID: #1559777 - in reply to #1559758
MOaner
50005000252525
ffs whisky mate. We create plenty of chances. But we do not score from them. Gregory would fuck up a one on one against Michael Fallon. We need a striker. We may need more than just a striker, but we need a striker. A Dublin, a Claridge, a Dichio, a Hayles. A striker.
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04 November 2017 20:43 Post ID: #1559782 - in reply to #1559758
Legend MO
2000200050025
Sorry, Monkey. I though Silver said we created only two chances all game and neither fell to a striker. I couldn't be there today, so have to go on others' reports.

All I know is, in half a century of watching Millwall I have never seen us before play a direct hoof ball at home. When Claridge, Dichio and Hayles were banging them in for us, they were getting on the end of well-constructed moves, not feeding off scraps.

Look, if we can get someone in better than Gregory and Morison, then let's do it. I support the club, not individual players. But after the Josh McQuoid fiasco, I'm not sure the Chairman is too happy about paying up very large sums for a striker...or massive wages on frees after getting his fingers burned by The Insane One.

First, above all else, I'd like us to get back playing some football. And if we can bring in someone in January who has been round the course a few times and knows where the back of the net is, then you won't hear any complaints from me.



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04 November 2017 20:49 Post ID: #1559786 - in reply to #1559758
GeroniMO
1000500100100252525
Tom Elliot will score goals in this division, however he has to be on the pitch longer than ten minutes for that to happen.
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04 November 2017 20:50 Post ID: #1559787 - in reply to #1559758
Legend MO
2000200025
I feel the team needs an Alex Rae type player who can attack teams down the middle and score from both inside and outside the box. At the start of the season I thought Saville could be that player but for all his energy he seems to be lacking control in his play. In fact, the entire front 6 are rushing things and lacking composure.

As I've said before, at the start of the season, even though we weren't getting the results, I thought we were playing well and some of the play was exciting but we've lost our way. I think we should not under-estimate how big the loss of Webster and Williams has been. I know I'll get stick from some but without Williams there is little creativity or somebody to calm it all down in midfield.

I think it's time for Neil to bite the bullet. Even if we persist with hoofball Elliott is a better target than Morison. With Elliott upfront it's essential that Fergie plays to give us width and create more threatening situations than AOB. He also has to work on tactics to make us a threat through the middle so teams, especially when they come to The Den, will never be certain what form the next attack will take.


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04 November 2017 21:10 Post ID: #1559794 - in reply to #1559786
MOjo
2000500100100100
cold blow - 4/11/2017 20:49

Tom Elliot will score goals in this division, however he has to be on the pitch longer than ten minutes for that to happen.


This. Big Tom must be given a chance - a run of at least 6 games in the starting 11. Ive yet to see him come on, even for a very short period, and actually be contained by the oppos ch.
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04 November 2017 21:10 Post ID: #1559795 - in reply to #1559758
MOjo
2000500100100100
Great report silver exactly what i saw on the telly.
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04 November 2017 22:42 Post ID: #1559800 - in reply to #1559758
Supreme MO
50002000500100100100100
First of all in my opinion we didn't deserve to win, and we didn't deserve
to lose. We was as poor a side as them. If they dragged us down to their
level, well we let them. We are a very poor side without Williams and
Tunnicliffe ( caught in possession 3 times in the 1st half !) for all his
endeavour hasn't got a killer pass in his locker. Wallace will be a big loss
for 3 matches. He hasn't been in great form but he's our only flair player.
I felt Craig done ok for his 1st game back but TC will never get any credit
from some of our fans.
Archer....6...ok but let one in.
Connor....6...Average
Hutch....7...Good.
Craig.....6,,,Did ok for me first game back.
Merry...7...Good.
Wallace...5...Should have been a yellow but shouldn't have made the tackle.
Tunnicliffe...5...No pace,no shots, no passes forward, no headers etc.
Saville.....6... never gives up but needed help. Overrun.
AOB.....5....A game to forget.
Gregory...6...Worse I've seen him for a long time.
Morison....5....Badly out of form.
subs;
Eliott....8.....MOM just for waking their centre-halves up. needs a run in
the team so we can judge if he is indeed the answer.
Thommo...7..Much more mobile then Tunnicliffe, perhaps deserves
a chance.
Fred.....6....Good.
Manager;
Harris....6...Would have been a 5 but for telling that no good cunt what
he thought of him.
Ref was the worst I've seen in many a moon !
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05 November 2017 09:37 Post ID: #1559825 - in reply to #1559758
MOjo
2000100025
Thanks for the report Silver,

I wasn’t able to make the game, by the sounds of it I was fortunate. Like Purley I was encouraged by the way we played early season, a mix of joined up football with some long stuff for good measure. Not sure why we have reverted to out and out hoof, can’t think this is because Webster and Williams are injured, it must be as instructed? Let’s be honest last season wasn’t that great when it came to the way we played, I don’t need to rattle off the games where it was one dimensional and blunt.

We have already shown that we can play without the aerial assault, I also agree that whilst we could do with an extra couple of signings we have players that can produce this style of play. It’s with NH.
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05 November 2017 10:03 Post ID: #1559827 - in reply to #1559758
Supreme MO
500020001000500252525
This is the first Sunday this season I've felt a foreboding for the rest of the games.

When Burton Albion come to The Den and take away all three points; well, that's just taking the piss!

So much for the fortress theory.

I predicted a top-six finish, but at this rate, we will be in a fight just to stay up.

Bad result.

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05 November 2017 10:37 Post ID: #1559828 - in reply to #1559758
Supreme MO
500020001000500
Stupid thing for Wallace to do.

He knew he was not going to catch the player. So committed a cynical foul when the ball was no where near him. The player was not in a dangerous position so no need to do it.

Wallace could have carried on running after the player, to put pressure on him instead.

It may not have been a leg breaking tackle, but could have still caused an injury.
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05 November 2017 11:01 Post ID: #1559830 - in reply to #1559758
From the 10 minutes i could see gregory was not going to have a good game i was right never seen him so shit he should have been replaced at halftime with tom.
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05 November 2017 11:19 Post ID: #1559831 - in reply to #1559758
Supreme MO
500020001000500
Some of Elliots impacts so far -

Started against Stevenage - scored twice.

Sub appearance v Ipswich - scored.

Sub appearance v Birmingham - set up a goal.

Started against Sheffield Wednesday - scored.

Sub appearance against Burton - flick on to give Fred a chance.


He's an experienced pro so doesn't need to be wrapped up in cotton wool. Give him 5 starts in a row. Nothing to lose.

Morison or Gregory can still be effective impact subs. They have enough experience to make a difference off the subs bench, with their runs into good positions.
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