For he's a Solly good fellow
and so say all of us ! I have to admit that Solly was not one of my favourite players prior to kick off yesterday. Always seemed a bit lightweight and not really done well. Of course and to be fair to him he was always playing out of position. My view has changed after yesterday. He put in a solid performance, managed a couple of great runs going forward and if he can maintain that level will do very well, let's hope he can.
Parky has done well in the players he's brough in and I drove down to the Valley with more optimism and excitement than I'd have anticipated a couple of weeks ago. I do like Parky on the whole and feel he is honest and is trying his best for the club and the fans. His appearance on Tuesday at the clean up demonstrates that and his willingness for an impromptu q & a session too. My only concern with him is tactically every now and then I think he does things that seem to make little sense. That aside I think he's realistically about the best man for the job.
Shades of last season in yesterday's game. Bournemouth are a team we should have put away quite comfortably especially given the gilt-edged chances Reid created. It should have all been over in the first half. Perhaps I'm being a bit too critical but we did do that a lot last season and we can't afford not to put these teams away.
The ridiculous sending off of Semedo didn't help of course. That decision capped a totally inept display from the ref. His East Stand friend, allegedly running the line, didn't help either. Thank goodness the other lino knew what he was doing.
The ref didn't give himself a chance to replay the incident in his mind. The way he went over frantically still blowing his whistle for no reason told you that his mind was already made up and that he was going to show a red card. Wrong decision totally and why didn't he just take those few seconds to think about it. I'm sure we'll appeal but we all know what happens when clubs like our appeal..........sweet FA ! In fact, history shows it usually makes matters worse !
Overall I was pleased with how the lads played given all the new faces. Akpo did ok and won most aerial battles and Abbot worked hard in a deep role. I'm not overly convinced about these two as a strike partnership.........we'll see but I think a different type of striker, a natural goalscorer or someone who's a bit quicker would compliment either.
Wagstaff again proved that he's best as a sub and I don't think Martin will have too much trouble in securing the right wing berth. Martin seems to have some flair about him and that will be good to see in the next few months.
McCormack seemed okay, good passing and got an excellent tackle in during the first 5 minutes to announce his arrival. I'm worried about his temperament though and he's needs to keep a lid on that.
Reid showed how silly Parky was towards the end of last season in playing Bailey ahead of him and out of position. I wonder how much that cost us. The play-off semi-final 1st leg still sticks in my mind as a prime example. All history now of course. Reid was great and it's good to see him being so positive and willing to take on defenders. Mind you I think I'd have liked to have a run against Bradbury !
Not sure about Francis.........he was easily beaten a couple of times, let's hope that's down to a lack of games of late. If Solly keeps playing as he did then he'll have to go some to force his way in to the team.
Next it's on to Shrewsbury in the Carling Cup. Not sure what I want from this game. A win would be good for confidence but it also means another game when we don't have a large squad. In addition, we still have to play in the paint pot trophy with litte option to rest players. Friday's game against the O's is more important so I'll settle for a league win that would put us top for a few hours against a win on Tuesday.