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PLAYER WATCH v Coventry City (A)

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PLAYER WATCH v Coventry City (A)

Each incident in the match was rated on the following scale: 

+5 GOAL 

+4 Excellent play 

+3 Very good play 

+2 Pleasing/good play 

+1 Decent play 

  0 Routine stuff 

-1 Sloppy play 

 -2 Disappointing/poor play  

 -3 Very poor play 

 -4 Terrible play 

 -5 Own goal 

The ratings for each player were then combined to produce a measure of the players overall contribution to the match. 


Key incidents per player = coloured stars              Overall contribution = numbers

Kaminski                    ***  *    5                              

R-Costello (45)          *******  *****     1

Nyambe                     ************  *******    10     

van Hecke                  ***************  *********    8

Wharton                    *******************  ***************     11

Pickering                   ************ ****     10

Giles (45)                   ****  ****     2

Travis                         *********** *******     5

Buckley (80)              ************  ********     7      

Rothwell                    **********  **     9   

Gallagher                   ************** *******     9


Diaz (45)                    *******  ***    10

Dack (45)                   ****  ***     5

Hedges (80)               **      4


Highlights and Lowlights 

(A justification for the main ratings given above)

Diaz is on the bench with Dack. Nyambe’s taking Lenihan’s place and JRC is right wing back. Giles is up-front on the right partnering Gallagher (scored 2 in his last 19 according to the commentator.) We’re out of the top 6 due to Forest’s big win earlier.

02 Nice long run by Buckley. He is too ambitious though and his long range shot is blocked and the rebound goes to an offside Gallagher.

05 Pickering is caught upfield and City collect the ball near the flag. It’s crossed into the box and Hamer meets it perfectly, 18 yards out, and it’s travelling but Wharton is in the way!

06 JRC gives away the ball near the centre circle and it’s danger! The City man threads a beautiful ball through the middle of our gaping defence to Godden running into our box. Van Hecke is chasing and the City man goes down. Was it van Hecke who clipped his heels or did he trip himself up? Hard to tell but Kaminski collects and it’s no penalty. Bedlam! Godden and the City fans are incensed.

07 Nyambe is beaten in the air, Van Hecke and Wharton are both drawn forward and Godden sucker-punches them with a neat ball past them both to the feet of O’Hare.  He tries to turn past the on-coming Pickering but it hits Harry’s leg and is swept into the net. Own goal!

09 Wharton miscontrols a long clearance and it falls nicely to City. It’s slipped to Godden again but an unstable Nyambe manages to keep his feet and shield the ball back to Kaminski. Our defence is a shambles!

14 More panicky defence work and a City cross comes in to an unmarked Godden, on the penalty spot, who heads inches wide. He was offside but…….we miss Lenihan. As Colin Hendry used to say….it’s up to the centre halves to makes sure that doesn’t happen. Nyambe and van Hecke were nearest to him.

17 Travis is trying to do the work of two men because Rothwell is doing nothing!

JRC makes a nice run and squares it low across the box. Gallagher tries to sweep it, first time, into the goal but it’s not very powerful and straight at the goalie. At least Sam got himself into the box.

23 Dabo plays with Pickering before putting in a nice cross which Godden heads over the bar. He was unmarked on the penalty spot again. Nyambe was marking him at one stage but he was drawn away.

29 Rothwell and Pickering stuff up a short corner.

30 Van Hecke is losing his cool. Here he pushes the City player for no apparent reason….other than his own frustration!

33 City cut us open again! Now, under no pressure, van Hecke passes straight to an opponent. Then Travis gives it away and Wharton has to clear the low cross from the 6 yard box. JRC wins the ball then passes it straight to a City player 25 yards out. Hamer takes it on and crashes the ball against the right post. This is garbage! 

35 Van Hecke loses control of the ball and lunges into a desperate mis-timed challenge on the edge of the box - yellow card! The kick is only 20 yards out and Palmer bends it round the wall but Kaminski has anticipated well and flings himself horizontal to push the ball away. 

38 They are so much quicker to the loose ball than we are….and they are more composed when they get it.

41 What is going on? A poor ball by Wharton hits a City man and ricochets towards Kaminski who is now well out of his goal near the wing. He clashes with the Coventry player and goes down. City look to take the quick throw in so Kaminski stays down and rolls in agony. Fortunately the ref buys it and blows to hold up play! From the throw, one City player beats about 4 Rovers and Maatsen tussles with JRC in the box. Maatsen goes down but we get the foul……phew…..both were tugging each other!

47 JRC launches a sky-high punt into the box and Wharton goes up with the keeper who fails to collect. A City man panic hoofs it over his own goal.

51 Half time. Another atrocious half….awful all-round. Toothless in attack and disorganised in defence.  Apart from taking set-pieces, Rothwell has done nothing.


45 Dack and Diaz on, Giles and JRC off. Direct from the kick-off, Gallagher goes up, on the wing, and wins a flick on. Nyambe battles for the ball and slips it to Buckley just inside the box. He lifts it perfectly to Dack on the 6 yard line and he heads past the keeper!!! 15 seconds I reckon!!! We weren’t in the game……we are now! Diaz was sniffing too. We actually had 2 players in the goalmouth! 

The first away goal since mid-January.

47 City have gone a bit wobbly!

48 Gallagher mis-controls and then lunges in and gets a yellow card.

50 A long run by Rothwell goes nowhere as he runs it over the goal-line.

54 The Rovers fans are still loud.

55 Gallagher’s getting quite a few flick-ons from long punts today! Diaz and Dack were hovering. City hoof it away. It’s all Rovers….amazing!

58 The first mazy run by Diaz across City’s half. It’s back-flicked to Rothwell who drives into the box and squares across the face of goal where Dack slides in and misses it by 2 feet.

It’s really loud!

60 Rothwell takes a free kick just inside the Coventry half. Wharton goes up and heads back across goal. Dack can’t get it but Diaz runs in and hits it against the left post from a tight angle. Someone was offside. Maybe Dack.

62 Another good flick on from Gallagher and Diaz lays back to Dack but his touch is poor.

63 Buckley loses the ball then fouls the City man 30 yards out. We clear it up fortunately.

66 Pickering intercepts in the centre-circle and Diaz picks up and decides to attack the whole Coventry defence on his own. He goes past 3 men, 4 more are back-pedalling, then lets fly a decent grass cutter from 27 yards and it whistles past the left post. Close.

A dumbass pull back by Buckley on Maatsen. Yellow card.

69 The centre backs are drawn forward again, the ball is fired down the City left wing and there is no one in our last 50 yards except Kaminski! The cross comes and Pickering decides to intercept in front of Kaminski. It works out ok and van Hecke boots clear.

71 A nice curving pass by Diaz out to Gallagher just to the right of the box he drives a square ball through the 6 yard box and this time a sliding Dack was 2 yards off.

72 A nice back-flick from Diaz sees the Rovers play the ball across field. Nyambe slides it to Rothwell who drives to the byline before looping it into the goalmouth but it right into the keeper’s arms.

74 Some real ping pong around the Rovers goal but Dack blocks the crucial shot on goal.

75 I think this is the 3rd or 4th time van Hecke has been writhing on the floor! Maatsen goes in the book. Mowbray gets a yellow too.

76 Looked like a good challenge by Wharton but the ref gives a foul. There’s a bit of afters Big handbags swap involving most of the players! Yellow for Wharton and a City man.

80 A good run down the right wing by Buckley wins a corner but it’s Hedges on and Buckley off!

81 Rothwell takes it and Wharton on the 6 yard line gets a relatively clear header and he thumps it into the net. Great stuff, fans and players go wild! Unbelievable turn-around!

I swear I saw Tony smile! You really can see how much it means to the players here.

“He’s one of our own” rings out.

83 Nyambe fouls 30 yards out, then heads the nasty free-kick over the bar.

85 Maatssen flashes a shot 2 yards wide of the left post.

86 Nyambe gives the ball away and Wharton fouls his man 36 yards out. When the shot comes in Kaminski decides to punch it away although it was going into his chest.

89 Rovers’ players are falling down all over….now Diaz takes it to the flag and wastes about 1 second before losing possession. 6 nervy minutes of extra time to go. Rothwell is receiving attention.

91 Brief panic stations in our box as Nyambe fails to clear but the ref blows - offside I think.

Blimey, now Nyambe’s down. He’s injured but we’ve no more subs.

96 The 3rd failed attempt by Diaz to waste time at the corner flag.

98 City attack down their right and Dabo crosses to the far post where Djokeres heads powerfully past Kaminski. He got away from the injured Nyambe and Gallagher wasn’t really marking anyone. I thought he had taken on the job of Nyambe’s protector since he was injured? Maybe Kaminski could have done better but what a catastrophe! I think Nyambe was living on one leg. We just couldn’t keep it out of our half.

Final whistle. Back to 6th so the agony continues.


Edited by tonyoz
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6 hours ago, J*B said:

Feels very harsh on Trav who I thought was arguably our biggest player in the pitch yesterday. 

I sometimes feel that way about individuals but I try to mark what I see. Travis worked very hard yesterday - he had to. There were quite a few times were he got a foot in but it went back to Coventry straight away …especially first half where we were struggling to get the ball and keep it. Just in case, I promise to pay Travis extra attention next match. The most noticeable change in scores since the bad run started is that there are far more errors for each player. Here, Wharton had almost as many errors as Travis had (significant) touches!

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2 hours ago, Exiled in Toronto said:

Also highlights what I thought I saw which was how few touches Dack had after his goal.

It was noticeable last match too. His little flicks just aren’t coming off……yet. Goal excluded of course.

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13 hours ago, Exiled in Toronto said:

Also highlights what I thought I saw which was how few touches Dack had after his goal.

Dack has been exactly like that for the U23s. Some people put it down to Dack not putting in the effort because he was only playing against kids. It could be something more serious than that. I hope I am wrong. Dack is still better than any of the three amigos who Mowbray started up front.

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On 04/04/2022 at 02:07, J*B said:

Feels very harsh on Trav who I thought was arguably our biggest player in the pitch yesterday. 

I had to check if I was "very harsh" on Travis. It's been bugging me! So I re-checked my scoring ....at least for the first half....then I ran out of stamina. My marks are in red.


00 A little wriggle and then a simple lay off.

Travis tackled near their corner flag.

Lobs a hopeful ball forward but it’s to a defender.

01 Heads the ball straight up in the air and Nyambe heads it on.

Gets a foot in and is then fouled near our box.  +1

02 Simple short pass.

Neat pass to Giles on the wing. +2

05 Travis does well to rob Dabo near our corner flag. +2

11 2 simple lay offs.

12 Simple short pass.

13 Simple short pass.

Collects the ball then gives a simple lay off.

14 Gets a foot in but his attempt to clear hits the City man and rebounds into our box. Van Hecke has to clear but it comes straight back and Godden heads just wide.

17 Travis beaten to the ball.

18 He intercepts. +1

21 Nice interception but then plays a poor pass down the wing for Gallagher to chase.+2, -2

23 Gets a foot in but Coventry keep possession.

25 Wins the ball on the edge of our box but gives it away immediately. -2

27 Short pass.

29 He punts the ball towards the box, City head away.

33 It’s a poor clearance by van Hecke. Fortunately the City player mis-controls but Travis lobs it back into danger and a City cross comes across the 6 yard box and Wharton clears.-2

38 Gets a foot in but City retain possession.

39 Collects, turns and lays off a short pass.

40 Intercepts but we still lose possession.

41 A nice lobbed ball by Giles to an unmarked Travis in the corner of their box. His cross is poor and goes out of play on the other side.-2

43 Travis is one of 3 Rovers who allow the City man to collect a throw and drive unscathed across the edge of our box. It leads to Maatsen tussling with JRC in the box, where JRC is lucky to come away with a foul.

44 2 simple short passes.

45 Outnumbered 3 to 1 in a chase for the ball, so is outmuscled and City keep the ball.

48 Coventry clear a corner and Travis lobs the ball back into the box but City clear.

Total (first half) = +2             Second half: +3

I like Travis for his attitude but I think this sometimes masks his overall contribution. I notice that he did not get a mention in any of the significant events posted in the commentary. I think I was fair overall.


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2 hours ago, Exiled in Toronto said:

I think his biggest strength is in his closing down people/space off the ball, which I don’t think gets marks in your system. He’s far more mobile out of possession than Rothwell or even Buckley.

It’s a good point and I have thought about it. I do credit the obvious “closing down” successes but preventing things that “might” have happened is more nebulous. I will think about how/if this can be accommodated. Thanks for the input.

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