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Question of the Week
What should happen to the EFL Trophy next season?
13/03 Bournemouth 2nd Half
By: Tony Butcher
NO changes were made by either team at half time. Town started a bit better than they had in the first, pressing early, but (thereâ€™s always a but) giving the ball away.
Grimsby Town 1 Bournemouth 1
Same old Town, concede one, concede another. Almost straight from the kick off Bournemouth got the ball back and tore Town apart down the centre and right. Fletcher was free, inside the area and slashed what may have been a shot, but was more like a cross, through the middle. Two Bournemouth payers were unmarked at the far post, just yards out. Hayter stopped and diverted the ball goalwards. Sigh, here it is. No! Fettis swivelled and leapt to his left, groping towards the ball as it looped behind him and clawing it away from the line. Magnificent save and one that we have a sneaking suspicion Davison wouldnâ€™t have made.
Take a little snooze. And when you return youâ€™ll find Mansaram on the pitch, having replaced the shimmering mirage that was Rowan with 15 minutes left. What good will that do? Mansaram did turn his marker once down near the left bye-line and hit a cross through the six yards box. Too high, too far. Too Mansaram. He just kept getting in the way, slowing down breakaways. But he wasnâ€™t booed this time.
Ah, so itâ€™s now is it? Young challenged Big Norm. Big Norm fell, the ref remembered it was his personal mission to book every player. The free kick, out on their right, about 25 yards out, was lofted to the far post. A flick header on and the other Fletcher, Carl, was unmarked about a dozen yards out. He leant to his left and smacked a perfect right-footed volley across the face of goal and...wide. At around this time Hockless replaced Thorrington, who had just given possession away, then been crocked. No time for the little pixie to weave his spells. Where Thorrington has pace, Hockless has guile and cunning. They are both tiny tots, though Hockless falls over less. Itâ€™s a mystery why we got one, when we already had the other.
Five minutes from the end a great cheer went up, Hamilton won the ball in a tackle. However, I donâ€™t believe it happened. It was behind a post, so I didnâ€™t see it. I think that the crowd were just having a laugh. It couldnâ€™t happen, it defies logic and the evidence accumulated over the last eight months. The Royal Society would laugh you off stage if you presented a paper to them. A couple of minutes later Ducking Des turned and passed the ball towards Edwards. Why tell you such ordinary tales of nothingness? Hamilton was on the half way line a few yards infield. Edwards no more than five yards from him, both unhindered by blue stockings. Dreadful Des managed to pass the ball straight out of play about three yards behind Edwards who looked, shall we say, surprised. One more thing to log on the Deswatch - Law furiously ticked off Hamilton when he dithered and dathered in passing. Hamilton just shrugged his shoulders as if to say "what can I do". We know the answer to that.
I saw Stuart Campbell again. Through very powerful binoculars.
The last moments were taken up with a Town corner headed goalwards by Warhurst but blocked near the penalty spot, followed by a substitution by Bournemouth. The game was ended about 3 seconds after the substitute came on. The crowd sort of booed, but just trudged out silently, not enamoured by the offerings placed before us. Stodgy porridge will do only in the most extreme of emergencies.
It was a horrible thing to observe, life draining away from club and fans alike. The tide is going out slowly. In the context of this match, Bournemouth deserved the draw more than Town, but neither team really did enough to get three points. Perhaps ½ each would have been fair, as both were equally bereft of that indefinable thing we all crave - quality. Bournemouth were better organised going forward, but then again they werenâ€™t thrown together over the cornflakes. Briefly in the second half Jevons appeared to be returning to his form of a couple of weeks ago, when he drifted out to the left and back towards midfield, exploiting the spaces and running at defenders. But that was a very brief period. The smallest pebble in the glacial tosh. The cold truth is that the Bournemouth â€˜keeper didnâ€™t make one save, and Town never looked likely to make him do so. The Town goal was almost an accident.
The Town defence looked adequate, being full of people who can tackle and mark, those extravagances that pass the urban spaceman and the psychopath by. Letâ€™s ignore the midfield, which collapsed once Coldicott walked off. Perhaps Law will put 4 centre backs in midfield too when suspensions are lifted and injuries healed? Whither football?
Nickoâ€™s Man of the Match
It can be any of the defence. Fettis looked fine, making two excellent saves which got Town a point. Young looked solid, doing what he was told by wise old Warhurst, who would have been the selection had he not scored a cracking own goal. Armstrong and Edwards are the finalists. Who? Which one, who will blink first? Ah, Mike Edwards, for being out of position and still his usual assured self. He kicked the ball out of touch less than Armstrong, and on such small things mountains are moved and greatness is bestowed. Well, acceptability anyway.
T Parks. Barely credible, the man wasnâ€™t biased towards either team, just rubbish. He seemed intent on booking everyone, was extremely arbitrary in his decision making, but consistent in his wackiness. If a things worth doing itâ€™s worth doing badly seemed to be his motto. Did someone have words with him at half time? He seemed to be less of a flasher in round two. His officiating destroyed a bad game. He gets 2.341, simply because he failed to find an excuse to abandon the game and force us to endure a second load of turgid drossitity
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