Date: 9th February 2014 at 3:24pm
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Yesterday’s 2-2 draw against Bournemouth, yet again, asked more questions than it answered.

The Wanderers’ struggles to win football matches of late have been a culmination of below-par player performances, questionable personnel/tactics from the manager and apathy amongst the ranks. Now, with the problems unresolved in camp, for most of the season, I fear the current crop of ‘players’ have forgotten how to win football matches.

Or, are they not being told how to?

I know, the wonder strike from Grabbon even before the Whites’ faithful had placed their backsides back on the blue plastic, didn’t help proceedings. But let’s face it, Bournemouth were always going to score yesterday, and the outcome- maybe even worse- would have still resulted in a draw.

There lies the problem.

They got the lifeline, thanks to Lewis’ hit, and the home players collectively pondered, ‘now what?’

I’m sorry lads, if you don’t know by now, you’re never going to know. Or maybe I should say, maybe you don’t want to know, or simply couldn’t care less?

Over to you, Dougie. This is what you get paid the big money for. You can complain about lack of funds, lack of left-backs, lack of transfer activity and lack of fitness ’til you’re blue in the face and it’s hard to disagree with you. But your boys were 2-0 up at home against Bournemouth yesterday and blew it… big time. Whatever your valid gripes are, yesterday’s collapse in concentration and commitment were unrelated.

The fans are losing faith in you, Dougie and it’s nothing personal. On the contrary, the majority of us Whites’ fans are praying you can turn things around and become a success at the Reebok. But when your lads lose a 2 goal lead at home, with seemingly no direction or promise of getting it back, you make it hard for even the staunchest of your followers to defend you.

I don’t doubt your work is testing, Dougie and I wouldn’t even begin to tell you how to do your job- but telling and advertising Andy Lonergan as your no. 1 ‘keeper, only to drop him to the bench not 24 hours later? Could it be things like that which had your Wanderers’ players running around yesterday with question marks above their heads, at 2-1 and 2-2 on the score-sheet?

Just a thought…


18 Replies to “Question Marks”

  • I myself am now bordering on apathy towards DF. What still concerns me most is how poor some of these players who take so much of our money home with them perform for us. Mears takes 25 grand a week home, which corresponds to about a stand’s worth of tickets for each home game we play a season with current attendances. And what do we get for it? Absolutely nothing. He looks like Jardel did when he arrived. A million quid a year for a fat burger addict who can’t be bothered to turn up for training on time. Awesome.

  • Whaddya mean NO left backs. Young Andy Kellett is a superb prospect and should be given a try out. He definitely is better than Tim Ream. he is quick, mobile and has an excellent left foot for dead ball situations.

    maybe he is inexperienced but he is a left back.

  • Rob, I agree with your point about the cynical attitude of certain players. However this highlights another factor contributing to our current woes. When we were in the Premier League and in what PG described as a group of clubs – basically everyone outside the top four or six elite – who were constantly at threat of relegation, there was always talk of a contingency plan in the event of that happening and a big part of that would be players contracts having relegation clauses to limit or reduce their wages or release them if we did go down. Clearly that never happened. I don’t want to drag up the whole tedious argument about past governance of the club, and to be honest even if such clauses had been in place it would only removed a small proportion of our debt, but it would have helped, especially considering FFP and the focus on this since we were relegated. More pertinent to our plight right now is how we use our assets to best effect – cynical, lazy and burger or twitter addicted as they may be. And this is where I have a big problem with Dougie. He seems incapable of motivating them at best and indeed more likely to alienate and antagonise them at worst. He may want to offload Mears, Eagles, Chungy or whoever but unitil he can do so it is essential to his job and to our progress to engage them, coach, cajole or cosset them into performances that win games for us. You don’t do that by sidelining them and telling them they’re a useless load of wastrels that you are just waiting to get rid of. That’s our job! Mears isn’t exactly my ideal defender and i would never have signed him ( cheers, Owen) but he is a serviceable asset we should be using, and part of a group of players who in spite of all their faults are more than capable of making an impact in this division if only they were mobilised and managed correctly. Dougie is absolutely falling flat in that aspect and we have good players who turn out looking sluggish, apathetic, frustrated with one another, tactically disjointed and playing without freedom, belief or direction. And that’s not just the legacy squad that Dougie moans about, his signings too. Someone on LOV suggested we should appoint Warnock. I’m no fan of his but by God I bet he’d get more out of this bunch than our patient, tentative, apprentice incumbent. As would a number of others.

  • Lost faith some time ago I’m afraid. It feels as if the whole lot are killing time until the season ends. I don’t think he will be sacked either. We need to hope we at least stay up because if we go down…………………….

  • everything that can be said about the manager has been said, I won’t plough over old ground. 3 points from the last 18 is truly dire however, if we beat Burnley the mood will swing back in DF’s favour, lose and his misery continues. DF desperately needs a victory this Tuesday, can the team rise to the occasion ? I think they are capable and we are due a result against the odds, but it will take commitment and fight on the night,

  • The team are capable. I think the commitment and fight will be there. Whether Dougie’s tactical instruction will meet the challenge is the question.

  • What the heck does Dougie say to the players at half time? Whatever it is it doesn’t work. The lads should bung cotton wool in their ears, smile and say ‘yes boss’. Then Spearing can give the motivational talk as they head up the tunnel. Maybe then we will get a decent second half performance.

  • Bournemouth came and worked hard for each other, had a little touch of class in Grabban (great player at this level) and reaped the benefits, and will be gutted not to have got three points. Our performance was completely lacking in commitment and concentration, as soon as anything started to go wrong the solution was to start lumping it aimlessly at Jutkiewicz, and all of the heads went straight down each time Bournemouth scored. I’ve defended Dougie for months but we need a manager who can properly motivate and control this bunch of overpaid losers. I’ve heard Warnock mentioned, it’s sad indeed that he seems like an attractive prospect right now.

  • I think we should get Kim Jong-Un. Chris – Mears is absolutely not a serviceable asset – you should see him – double chin and everything! Not what I would expect from a professional footballer.

  • I believe that Mears had a row with DF (Which isn’t wise, who argues with their boss) after that happened DF has refused to speak to him and he has been sent to train with the reserves and kids. I think this is why he refuses to leave. Now I think it is poor form to throw your toys out like that and he should be making an effort to get involved even if it means getting fit and playing reserve games. However it is further insight into the shocking man management at the club at all levels. I hope it is right that ED is selling up as we can have a good clear out at all levels and rebuild.

  • Dear moonpig your comments are needed and respected, aside from the odd attack that is, you add balance so give us a few words even if you feel the despair we all share. Also Fred has gone walkabouts also, he needs to put his schoolbooks down and offer his insight

  • I hadn’t seen Mears Rob, but if that is the case then it comes down to a discipline and man management issue as Gav says.

  • Its clear to see that confidence is unbelievably low at the moment and when we concede the players seem to freeze and inexplicably to be able to pass the ball to a white shirt. In the first half we did fairly well, got ourselves 2 up and should have gone on to win comfortably but when their lad went down we seemed to stop and fair play to the lad smashed it into the top corner. After that we gave away free kick after free kick, corner after corner and brought the pressure on ourselves. Why the players cannot stay calm and keep possession and slow the game down is worrying. Swapping Medo for Davies wasnt the right decision, i would have gone for Pratley over Medo because we needed the energy in there as Trotter was also waning. People asking for Moritz earlier but for me he can be hit and miss, on Sat he looked uninterested and uninspiring although not as much as Eagles who seems to be getting worse with every minute on the pitch. We are going to find handling Ings and Vokes very difficult tomorrow, the only way we can win would be to put pressure on their defence which in my view is shaky, it just hasnt had to deal with much pressure because they have so much threat up front. I would like to see Hall on the left as Trippier likes to get forward and this would give him something to think about. We will go 5 in MF as Ings drops deep a lot and wouldnt surprise me if Medo and Spearing both start for this reason. In reality a draw would be a good result but the game is a must win.

  • Kim Jong-Un would improve the match day experience at least! Pre match display of military might and choreographed crowd participation would be a first for the Championship! Or were you fancying him as a left back?

  • If the rumours from North Korea are to be believed, he could with the Championship and the Premiership for us in the same season! I was fancying introducing his man-management skills into the setup, but he’d have to be a better left-back option than what we currently have.

  • Well stranger things have happened in my 35 years of watching the Whites. Lets see if we can’t just win tomorrow night and lift the gloom. Please?

  • My predictions for the Burnley game:

    Same back four
    Two holding players
    One up front

    Play well in first half, until Burnley score
    End first half looking demoralised
    Play even worse in second half, both before and after Burnley score again.

    I don’t like these predictions, I really don’t, but it’s what my head tells me.
    My heart tells me Whites 4 – 0 Burnley

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