What a load of rubbish
That was the chant that didn`t exactly echo round the Memorial Stadium on Saturday after our defeat against Bournemouth, mainly because there weren`t enough people remaining to create an echo.
Yes, it was gutless and clueless and quite a lot of other ‘less` words you might be able to think of, but was it right to boo the team off after ‘What a load of rubbish?`
I might have done it when I was younger. I paid my money so I was entitled to give my opinion, was my argument.
Now I am older, I realise that, in general, players don`t try to play badly. Sometimes it just happens.
But badly they played and the patience of those who remain finally snapped.
Following our earlier defeats and draws, many people stayed behind to clap. It was just a blip. Everything would turn out fine. But Bournemouth, who were woeful, were too good for us.
We started okay but it just got worse.
Sean Rigg provided a 10 minute cameo of why his chance to start a match was long overdue but when he went off, everything went downhill.
The remnants of Darren ‘Sicknote` Anderton should have been easy to snuff out. He was slow, cumbersome but he could pass the ball. Remember the first bits and the last bit doesn`t matter. But what did we do? We let him pass the ball.
It was easy to see why the visitors occupied the nether regions of the division but it was easier to see why we are joining them. We lack quality. Trolls says that too but what he really means is we are not good enough. That`s what quality means.
I read today we are trying to sign a striker and I can`t disagree with that. Andy Williams has not scored a league goal for three months, Rickie Lambert cannot buy a goal and Richard Walker can`t score one unless it`s a penalty. And Trolls is tinkering. He doesn`t know his best striking pair and it`s hard to see it from the terraces either. For me, it`s Lambert and A N Other, like last week with poor Riggy and now that A N Other may need to come from somewhere else.
I fully expected us on Saturday to equalise. I thought that Bournemouth were sitting too deep and that somehow we would get one goal and then gain the momentum to get a second. What a fool I was! We never looked like scoring because we don`t create enough.
And why don`t we create enough?
In the midfield, Campbell and Disley were predictable. They work hard but they know they will play every week. Out wide we were predictable too. Everyone seems to love Pipe but I can`t yet see why. He is not a winger, that`s for sure. In fact, he looks like a wing back but we don`t use wing backs. Jacobson and Carruthers look like wing backs too but I really do rate the former and he was our best player.
Haldane was Haldane. You know what you are going to get with him. Hard work, honesty and no end product. Igoe came on and struck a wonderful shot which the keeper tipped over but he is not trusted inside and so plays wide and is constantly driven inside and backwards. At 32, he is not going to get any quicker or more physical. A class act, for sure, but not if he doesn`t play.
Trollope out? Lawrence out?
Well, there are people talking about it.
“How long will the board give him?” was one question I heard not a few times on Saturday night but as I hardly have the hot line to Mr Dunford, I was unable to answer with any certainty.
But I do know this.
Next summer, we have been told the club will be relocating temporarily to Cheltenham whilst the Memorial Stadium is rebuilt into an 18,000 all seater stadium.
With our neighbours at the B&Q stadium in Ashton in serious danger of getting into the Premiership (stranger things have happened), will Geoff Dunford and the board take the chance that we could be in the Fourth Division if there is a danger City might get there?
Don`t forget that we have never been more than a division away from the City. It would not be that clever if we moved to Cheltenham to play against (sorry to patronise these clubs, but here goes) Accrington Stanley and Dagenham and Redbridge whilst the City entertain Manchester United and Arsenal.
Who`d be a director, eh?
It`s been very good to read in the local media that Trolls and Lennie have been praising the board for backing their judgement. Long may it continue.
The time for making major changes to the squad was in the summer and the management team chose not to make that many.
Now we are near the foot of the table and it is not looking good.
But it need not look bad forever.
A win at Northampton and we are laughing again, with a nice little FA Cup tie at the end of the week to help boost the club`s finances.
Yes, it was a load of rubbish last week but I expect the team knows that too.
Geoff and the board are backing the management and we should too.
Changing the manager every few weeks doesn`t work at the Rovers and we, of all clubs, should know that by now.