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Rovers vs Stoke City, 06/04/18, Ewood Park, 3pm Kick Off.

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The most frustrating thing is on seeing that line up nobody but nobody who’d seen a game before thought it would be any different. And the reason nobody thought it would be any different is because if you’ve even been to a few games you’ve seen the exact same crap before.

Then regardless of the match situation it was going to be the same substitutions at more or less the same times. 5 mins late on the second tbf  

If I was in the away dugout for a guest appearance as away manager at ewood rovers wouldn’t get a point. Sure of it. 

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Evans/Smallwood at home to Stoke ffs. Bennett in the no10 role. It's like Mowbray is trying to lose on purpose at this point.

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Just now, bluebruce said:

I didn't understand why you said this earlier either. To my knowledge Raya has been criticised in public once, and entirely rightly so. He did excellently today. Not at fault for the goal and two super saves.

TM will probably blame Rothwell (yes he's only done that once too, but Rothwell is an attacker, not the goalie who has made plenty of mistakes this year or the absolutely porous defence who rarely get blamed considering).

You’ve got wrong end of stick. I mean if he got MOTM then Mowbray can’t say we were unlucky today, should have won etc.

Edited by Gavlar Somerset Rover!

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Just now, Gavlar Somerset Rover! said:

Del on instead of Rodwell. No attacking subs until 70th either.

Four of our last five home matches have ended in a 1-0 defeat - Bristol City, Boro, Preston and Stoke. Totally unacceptable and at the vast majority of clubs Mowbray would be removed from his position and rightly so. You just can't keep losing home games like this. We've also conceded in the first 20 minutes in 8 of the last 11 matches! That is absolutely appalling. 

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Just now, DE. said:

Evans/Smallwood at home to Stoke ffs. Bennett in the no10 role. It's like Mowbray is trying to lose on purpose at this point.

He’s either daft or trolling us at this point. No Rovers fan would have chosen that line up with the squad available. 

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Nothing against Bennett he's been a good player for us but Mowbray shunting him around the team literally every week and in every game when there are better options is bordering on insulting now.

The only thing I can think of is he must be very influential in the dressing room and must keep a lid on a few dissenting voices in there !

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Just now, DE. said:

Four of our last five home matches have ended in a 1-0 defeat - Bristol City, Boro, Preston and Stoke. Totally unacceptable and at the vast majority of clubs Mowbray would be removed from his position and rightly so. You just can't keep losing home games like this. We've also conceded in the first 20 minutes in 8 of the last 11 matches! That is absolutely appalling. 

And at home we’ve scored in the first half just 5 times in 20 matches. Embarrassing.

Edited by Gavlar Somerset Rover!

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Just now, Dan said:

He’s either daft or trolling us at this point. No Rovers fan would have chosen that line up with the squad available. 

Maybe he has had enough and knows he is never getting fired (paid off) so he is forcing their hand?

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Some reflections/conclusions from today's match: 

 

1) We can't write off our academy players based on this season. 

Raya's made a fair share of errors but today showed he has talent, and the potential to be a quality keeper. Today showed he has got ability, and isn't a duffer worth writing off (I think there have been other occasions when this has been shown but today is a clear example of it.) Given he's been singled out by the manager, and has to play with some absolutely comical defenders, I'm not surprised there's been a few clangers in there. A much fairer assessment could be made under a proper coaching set up, with a decent defense in front of him, and a team that doesn't invite continual pressure, as to Raya's actual level.  The same could be said for Nayambe, Lenihen and Travis too. They've all shown promise and potential, but the current set up doesn't allow them a fair evaluation imo. 

 

2) Square pegs round roles. 

Bennett had a shocker but let's be honest when he's set up to be one of the key attacking talents, he always was going to struggle. Bennett has his uses, especially his engine, which as one of the 2 more defensive mids would allow him to shine. However, when the onus is for him to be one of the main attacking midfielders he was never going to come out with any glory. Armstrong hasn't the physical presence or ability to do anything other than watch the game go by, so along with Rothwell there is a lot of pressure on Bennett to create, which has never been his forte. Even playing Smallwood/Evans at centre mid - smart move, because Stoke have a ferocious scoring record of late - was going to make it an even tough ask for Bennett to create because the 3 would get no support from the 2 behind them. I'd imagine Bennett as one of the 2, or even one of the 3 with Dack and Rothwell as the 2, (especially with Travis and Reid behind them) would see Bennett make a much better contribution to the game. Likewise, Smallwood and Evans together are just going to drag each other down as both offer similar abilities, making their lack of attacking prowess even more pronounced. Our team may be hapless but TM is making it a lot more apparent with some awful selections and combinations. 

 

3) Plan B doesn't exist

Now it's fair to say Plan A hasn't worked for a while, but the problem is there's no Plan B. Change the formation? Hard to go 2 up front when you only have one Championship level striker. Change the style to playing it along the ground - a decent striker who suits that game plan is needed for that to work. And more creativity than just Dack or Rothwell in the hole. Pace down the wings - would help if we actually had Chapman in the squad. 3 centre backs, we have only 3 in the squad and they're all injury prone. 4-2-3-1 is really not working, but there aren't too many viable alternatives. Mainly because we don't have the players to do so. Well played Tony. 

 

4) Short term or long term? 

No youngsters played till we're safe - not thinking about the future until we've got the magical 50 points (even though we aren't in any danger of going down but still let's run with it). So if short term wins are the order of the day why isn't Reid in the team? He's shown himself to be our best centre mid so why not put him in the team if it's all about getting points. And if we're not because he won't be here in the future, then why not throw in a few more youngsters for development. What TM says and what he does is totally contradictory - and whilst I've debated on other threads if this shows him to be a good man or has less morals, the very best interpretation is he's lost the plot. 

 

Overall another worrying defeat as the team spirals downwards. 4 from 33 is an appalling record and Stoke have been poor of late, so no way can this be seen as anything other than a terrible result.  

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Just now, Mattyblue said:

So Dack turned up and was sent home for not ‘being in the right frame of mind’, I believe.

As I say, he’s another who needs to be gone. Great player on his day but they’re far too infrequent and his head never seems to be right. Can’t play because he’s had a bust up with his constant on off flame. Jesus wept.

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Obviously over the years there's the odd occasion when you can't make a game due to illness, work or social commitments etc. but I think this is the first time in 48 years I've CHOSEN to miss a game and do something else. I've seen more than enough of Mulgrew/Williams/Bennett/Conway/Smallwood/Evans and trying to hoof the ball long towards Graham to know that watching more of the same tired old crap is a complete waste of my time.

Seems like a good decision on the day. TM should have gone a few weeks ago allowing us to plan for next season.

Sorry if it offends anyone but imo the standard of our performances was never anywhere near this bad under C o y l e. It was just that under him we couldn't defend to save our lives. I always thought the players were playing for him and tried their best.

I will be there Tuesday I think. Im not expecting anything unless he is bold and puts Rothwell Dack and Chapman in behind Brereton and gives a couple of youngsters a chance.

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Just now, Mattyblue said:

So Dack turned up and was sent home for not ‘being in the right frame of mind’, I believe.

Fine him a month's wages - arrogant prat!

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That was pretty damn excruciating at times.

Negatives - Smallwood Evans Bennett Mulgrew Bell. First 2 were awful Smallwood does nothing but  wreak havoc in our own midfield, Bennett has more lead in his legs than a shrapnel crater and Mulgrew is just a injury laden passenger.

Positives - we won’t see Rodwell or Reed next season, we passed back more times than Lowe ever did, we play better without Mulgrew in the side.

the midfield was shocking, Mowbray what were you thinking? Static and lacking creativity.

 

off for a Chinese and a lager

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The only thing I find hard to understand about today is that today's loss seems to have finally tipped the balance (for some posters) as far as Mowbray is concerned.

But there was nothing worse today than we've seen for the entire 2nd part of the season. In fact it was not even close to some of the utter crap we saw some months ago.

Edited by Husky

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Just now, dallydally said:

Fine him a month's wages - arrogant prat!

After all the club did for him when he could have been given a custodial sentence. Prick.

Edit; split with his mrs, nobhead get rid of him.

Edited by AAK

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Just now, dallydally said:

Fine him a month's wages - arrogant prat!

So much for the man management at Ewood. I find this disgusting after fans spend hard earn money and Dack's given a day off.

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Too many League One players in this squad. Smallwood, Evans, Amari Bell and Williams all not good enough for the Championship. Looks like they all want to be on holiday too. It's a shocking run and TM must take responsibility for some of that. Play like that on Tuesday and we'll get stuffed by Derby

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