Date: 17th January 2010 at 6:49pm
Written by: BarosBarryBouma

Tiredness? Bulls**t excuse. This was our third match this month!

We looked like footballing’s equivalent of Audley Harrison today – all hype, no punch. We need a finisher, and fast – not a forward, not a striker, but a natural, born finisher. Someone who knows how to put the ball into the back of the net and who can get in positions to do so. My own preferred pick, Robbie Keane, can be ruled out as he’s a Spurs player and no way in hell will Harry and Martin do any more business between our clubs, so that’s him ruled out. Only one other option I can think of in that mould who would be possibly available, within our budget, and could make the desired impact, and it’s a long shot – Jermaine Beckford. Unfortunately, he withdrew his transfer request today.

But back to the game. We bossed possession (but didn’t make the most of it), we had countless shooting opportunities (but no-one to pull the trigger), countless set pieces (but no-one able to provide a telling delivery or get on the end of them). The main positive we can take is that we never really looked like conceding, and we never really gave the Hammers any clear-cut chances. Defensively, we’re fine. We just lack a cutting edge. And we’ve been saying the same thing since Yorke left.

In retrospect, changes should have been made today – there was no reason to keep the same starting line up with the second semi-final coming midweek. Carew should have started, Young should have started, Sidwell should have started, maybe even Delph, Albrighton or Delfouneso. We would still have had enough for a draw at least, we would have rested a few key players, and who knows, one of the other lads may well have stepped up to the plate.

In summary, a clean sheet and a point are the best we can take from this one, not good enough. A wasted opportunity to either make up ground on the teams ahead of us and/or ‘rest’ players (snort) for the big midweek game ahead. As it is, a frustrating day at the office, and one where Blackburn got a shot of confidence. They’ll come to Villa Park thinking they can turn the tie around.

Player Ratings

Friedel: 5
had nothing really to do

Cuellar: 10
deserves the man of the match simply for twatting Savage with his clearance. Let’s face it, the MoM wasn’t going to a forward!

Collins: 6
average display, didn’t make the most of his opportunities from set pieces

Dunne: 6
held our defence together, but made a few mistakes as well

Warnock: 8
Tireless, up and down the pitch, best player out there today. The real MoM.

Petrov: 5
Gone from our player of the year to the weak link in our midfield. Hasn’t got the energy to keep up with the rest of our team, and dwells on the ball so long he kills any impetus in our attacks.

Milner: 6
Reliable and hardworking as ever, won plenty of set pieces, but was guilty of losing the ball

Downing: 6
Worked hard, poor delivery at times, tired towards the end.

Young: 7
Worked hard throughout, was double and triple teamed at times but kept at it and still created chances, but delivery again let him down.

Heskey: 6
Brought players into the game around him, worked hard, but we need more from our forwards

Gabby: 7
Worked hard, battled for the ball, held it up well and managed to create a few chances. Playing as a hold up player suits him, and he does pick our players out well, but should have done better with the chances that fell to him.

Carew: 5
Had the ball in the back of the next (was a couple of yards offside though) and – unbelievably – managed to finally direct a flick on towards Gabby! For the first time this season! Apart from that, he was anonymous. Might have done better had he been on the field for the 15-odd corner kicks and dozen or so free kicks we’d had before his arrival. Then again, maybe not.


15 Replies to “BarosBarryBouma Match Report v Hammers”

  • Whenever a chance falls to one of our ‘strikers’!! I never expect them to score, they don’t seem to know what to do with the chances presented to them, they don’t even seem to shape their bodies in the way i would expect them too to take the chance, as if

  • This is off the BBC Sport site ‘The final chance of the match fell to Agbonlahor, who broke free of his marker inside the box but Green was quick out to block before the striker could pull the trigger’ think he could actually have played a round of golf f

  • This is the first time this season i do not think we will make the top 4 , the Hammers are a very ordinary side at the moment and these are the teams we should be whipping . If we hadn’t gifted them 4 points this season they would be 2nd bottom . I dont a

  • I drab performance that only deserved a draw. Too many waisted corners which we used to be formidable at. We have still yet to consistantly play well this season and if we dont manage to do that we will not finish in the top 4. On the bright side downing

  • Its clear we need a striker – a natural finisher.
    Everyone can see this and hopefully Mon can too.
    The issue is who though?
    anyone from the lower leagues is a gamble and inconsistent with a team who have a top 4 finish in mind!?

    Its slim pickings as

  • Couple of points. Beckford????? He is a scorer at lower league level at best. Every pundit on the box agrees with this and the Leeds fans I know, tell me that he is a poor footballer with a knack for goals at that level. He may make a fist of it in the Ch

  • A striker, a fox in the box is definitely needed not only to put away the chances we create but to change the style of play. What happened last season is just about to happen again as we are starting to play teams we have already played once this season a

  • Agree about Cuellar I reckon he’s a great player but not a right back as he’s to defensive, the lack of any attack from that position takes a little pressure off any team we are playing. Personally Cuellar should move back into the middle, Young in at rig

  • OK, lets inject a bit of realism here ! It was just one of those games. I didn’t like it, I was frustrated, I even got annoyed, but games like that happen, they happen to all teams, they happen to the best teams from time to time. But look at it this way,

  • I suppose we all have the right to criticise, but to go on about it all the time must be frustrating for MoN, spare a thought for tht bloke’s wife – she must be close to topping him! MoN has spoken very highly of the Fonz during the past month. It is my g

  • REALLY don’t think he is too stubborn re: the fonz Villan444, I know he rates the young lad very highly but he is still a kid, he will get his chance for sure. Would have liked to see 20 mins or so of him yesterday as Gabby at times looks like he has run

  • I love Carlos, but prefer Luke at right back we look a much better team with a natural right back.

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