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ricardo

Ricardo's report v Bristol City

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A fine August night and the pitch looking in beautiful condition as City began defending the River End. IMO we always perform better when kicking towards the Barclay first half.With McGovern retaining his place between the sticks it was an otherwise unchanged side but they were pushed back early as Bristol began with the wind in their sails winning three corners in the opening five minutes. The City rearguard coped well and with Klose and Bennett looking like a pairing of some authority, there was little in the way of chances in the City box.At the other end City were trying to stretch the visitors defence but as on Saturday a wayward pass all too often caused a move to break down. Naismith had the first shot of any note on the 10 minute mark but it drifted a couple of yards wide. Murphy had a few runs down the flank but was having trouble getting the better of his fullback.Bristol looked a lively outfit and Kodija, an awkward customer who got some real venom behind a shot from the angle which McGovern did well to push behind. Apart from this effort the Bristol forwards were usually well marshaled by the home defence. The Canaries soon broke out and at last got some pressure on the visitors back line as Brady tee''d up Tetty for what looked for all the world an opening goal. A vintage Tetty thunderbolt crashed back off O''Donnell''s left post before being scrambled clear. Cue lots of Oohh''s and Aahh''sIt then all got a bit scrappy for a time but the final quarter was all City. On 38 minutes some crisp passing on the edge of the box involving Murphy and Wes, left Johnny Howson with a clear sight at goal and the City captain made no mistake with a curling effort  into the top right hand corner. It could easily have become two as a sweeping move involving Naisy, Wes and Jerome almost released Murphy through the middle while moments later O''Donnell was called upon to beat away a rising Naismith drive.A satisfactory half was greeted with generous applause from the CR faithful but my son and I ripped a couple of ironic boo''s into them just for the sake of balance.[;)]I was hoping to see City up the pace from the off when the second half began but Bristol were still looking very lively and competing for every ball. Brady surged down the left in the 48th minute but his low angled cross was scrambled away for a corner and the game descended into another scrappy period where passes from both sides were going astray. McGovern was finally called into action to beat away a looping header but inspite of a bit of Bristol pressure the City defence looked well in control. It was Brady again who got the crowd going with another great run but Murphy was on his heels rather than his toes when the pass came through. It was no surprise to see Canos replace the City youngster on the hour mark and he was soon showing some nice touches down the right. He almost got on the scoresheet but his shot, after a neat turn, lacked any real power. City now began to really dominate with Pinto and Brady surging down the wings and Naismith and Wes at the heart of every City move. Wes was so unlucky not to add his name to the scorers list when he shimmied into the box only to see his shot come back off the post.They certainly deserved a second goal but it refused to come despite some near things and some robust Robbins defending. Mulumbu came on to tighten up the middle for the last ten minutes and then Lafferty to embarrassing rapturous applause with just a minute left. Shades of Luciano Becchio. Why sections of the crowd latch onto to certain players who have done the best part of bugger all is beyond me.Anyhow, a good three points with City clearly a class above their opponents. My men of the match were Naismith and Wes who were both outstanding for workrate and skill and were quick to chase back when a rare mistake was made. At the back Klose looked a class above everyone and never put a foot wrong so all things considered a very satisfactory performance and result.[Y]

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Many thanks for this report Ricardo. I never get to home games living so far away so it''s always great to get a fan''s perspective of the phases of the game and key influences. Hope Canos can stake a claim given feedback on the forum?

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Good report as usual Ricardo, hard to disagree other than MOTM, i thought the big screen deserved it, got the Barclay on side with his goal celebration, and think Bristol City didn''t know what to make of it.

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Thanks for the report Ricardo. Would have said that Canos needed more of a mention than you gave him though. He looked very lively when he came on, and was even geeing up the City stand to get behind the team at one point, which was good to see. Would disagree with the Naismith as mom assessment though. He looked pretty one dimensional and seemed to give the ball away as often, if not more, as Tettey did without winning it back as frequently. I also though Jerome ran himself into the ground, earned a breather and was far more deserving of a standing ovation than the man that replaced him.

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[quote user="Iwans Big Toe"]Thanks for the report Ricardo. Would have said that Canos needed more of a mention than you gave him though. He looked very lively when he came on, and was even geeing up the City stand to get behind the team at one point, which was good to see. Would disagree with the Naismith as mom assessment though. He looked pretty one dimensional and seemed to give the ball away as often, if not more, as Tettey did without winning it back as frequently. I also though Jerome ran himself into the ground, earned a breather and was far more deserving of a standing ovation than the man that replaced him.[/quote]

Agree with this. Jerome in particular looked back to his hustling best and at one point ran half the length of the field to tackle back. Really excellent effort for the team - and effective front running.  

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Excellent. I thought Brady and Wes were the stand out, although Jerome put in a great shift. Canos looked lively, and would be amazed if he kept that tempo up for 90 minutes! Not sure why Tettey got MotM from the sponsors, but they pays their money..........

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The Sky reporter seemed to favour Bristol City''s involvement more, especially in the opening half. That report is more encouraging and suggests that we deserved more.

Did they come to defend in the way that Wednesday did in the first half of that game?

That defensive unit is proving a strong point as is the combined industry of Wes and Naismith.

Ruddy might have a fight on his hands to regain the number 1 spot and Canos should be a starter against 1p5wich.

Mulumbu is earning his corn at last, if only as a precautionary measure from the bench.

It is all encouragement lining up for the derby game. Fingers crossed.

1p5wich apparently put up a decent away performance last night so they will be up for it, but they will probably have got an injury or two in the process. They seem to pick up more than most under the regime of those two dinosaurs MM and TC.

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I was listening to Radio Norfolk last night and it was really difficult to get an idea of the flow of the game- Eadie said we hadn''t looked like scoring but made the keeper make a couple of great saves in back to back sentences!

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Good point about the goalkeeping position Broadstairs.  McGovern seems to have not put a foot wrong since he came in.  Sunday will obv be a big pressure test, but if he continues to perform I can see Ruddy struggling to get the starter spot back.

 

What do others think ?

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Please ignore the other post. I think it slipped through a rip in the space time continuum from a parallel universe.

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Jerome deserves a lot of credit for his performance. Ran all night long, made some important challenges and clearances and simply never stopped working for the team. Pushed himself so much, on about 70 mins he came to the side of the pitch and threw up.

Hasnt shied away during a dodgy start to the season for himself and credit to him. For some reason some fans would rather see Lafferty succeed after showing virtually nothing in a city shirt than Jerome who played a massive part in our previous promotion, scored against the scum and at Wembley.

The substitution reaction last night coupled with the booing of Saturday (where was the booing last night? I thought it was aimed at the board for not signing a striker? Have we bought one now? Oh, we won so alls good again yes?) has left me baffled as to the sanity of some City fans.

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Thought McGovern looked very assured last night, compared to Saturday when he came on seemed a bit nervous. Had one serious save to make in the first half that I recall as a scoring chance at his near post and dealt with it well by turning around the post / crossbar. Think its his position to lose for now, same with Russ Martin, he is going to a bench warmer for a while I think with the way the back 4 are playing at the moment.

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Thanks Ricardo.So what do people think about Kodjia as a potential buy. I thought he looked a bit of a handful and would work well in our system?

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Thanks Ricardo. How is Lafferty''s warm up progressing so far this season? Are they doing enough in training to improve his stretching etc?

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Kodija looked quite handy but got little change out of our defence. I''m not sure he is any better than what we have.

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As always, thanks Ricardo - was unable to follow last nights game at all so I enjoyed reading your account of events.

I must say with Laff''s, he''s certainly a trier, but in pre-season didn''t do enough for me when presented with a decent chance to stake a claim on a first team place with just Jerome to compete with. I think he''s fine for back-up, but we really need to bring in at least one (if not two) striker(s) before the end of the window. Relying on Jerome with Laff''s and Morris as back-up perhaps doesn''t contend with the rest of our high quality squad and certainly doesn''t sound worthy of winning promotion on paper and that does concern me along with how we appear to be struggling to get the right players in.

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Having watched the game yesterday, I''ve arrived at a slightly baffling conclusion that Jerome isn''t actually a good fit for our system.

Don''t get me wrong, yesterday he gave us 120%, tackling back and popping up defensively with a nice degree of poise. A very good performance, if not a very goal-threatening one.

But Cam isn''t so great in terms of his technical ability- he''s a sprinter at heart and uses his superior pace or strength to just outmatch defenders and keepers to knock the ball home in 1-2 touches. This worked great last time out in the Champs as we mainly played a longer counter-attacking game; now our primary style is to camp our midfield in the final third and use our quick speed of foot and thought to get someone a chance.

He''s not quite got that close control quickly enough for me. Nahki Wells is the same sort of player, so I''d be surprised if we were genuinely interested there.

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[quote user="king canary"]I''d take a gamble he''s better than Lafferty...[/quote]Re. getting a quality striker in, maybe we have acquired something of a

reputation as a graveyard for strikers? Vaughan, Kane, Kamara, Becchio,

RVW, C. Martin, Hooper, Grabban, Lafferty, Bamford, M''Bokani (any

others?) have all been and, apart from Lafferty, gone pretty much in

short shrift, none having managed to enhance their reputations while in

City colours. Since the departure of Holty, only Cameron Jerome has

established himself with us, a fact which his increasingly vocal critics

would do well to recognise, appreciate and acknowledge. It seems

probable to me that, again this season, we are likely going to have to

settle on a less than ideal solution to our striker shortage.

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We basically need our own Aguero, rather than a target-man style player.

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That''s a very fair point westcoast, we do lack a talismanic striker.

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C. Martin didn''t enhance his reputation whilst in City colours...?! Are you sure about that? Same for Grabban - moved on for bigger money than we paid for him.

The rest just simply weren''t up to that much, or were loans and never that likely to establish themselves with us. Not many of the others you mention have actually gone onto better things elsewhere.

I would hazard a guess that this is a pretty common theme across most clubs - it''s very difficult, and/or extremely costly to sign a quality striker. Makes you realise just how good Holt was for us.

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[quote user="Ian"]C. Martin didn''t enhance his reputation whilst in City colours...?! Are you sure about that?[/quote]Ee''s futten laazy thoo Nayul ent he?

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[quote user="westcoastcanary"][quote user="king canary"]I''d take a gamble he''s better than Lafferty...[/quote]Re. getting a quality striker in, maybe we have acquired something of a

reputation as a graveyard for strikers? Vaughan, Kane, Kamara, Becchio,

RVW, C. Martin, Hooper, Grabban, Lafferty, Bamford, M''Bokani (any

others?) have all been and, apart from Lafferty, gone pretty much in

short shrift, none having managed to enhance their reputations while in

City colours. Since the departure of Holty, only Cameron Jerome has

established himself with us, a fact which his increasingly vocal critics

would do well to recognise, appreciate and acknowledge. It seems

probable to me that, again this season, we are likely going to have to

settle on a less than ideal solution to our striker shortage.[/quote]
It''s an interesting theory. In the interest of balance, have you looked at the striker throughput of all the other teams around us over the same period to see whether we are wildly out of kilter with everybody else? I do think we are often guilty of looking at our own situation in isolation and not always looking at the broader context/perspective. You are looking at, what, ten years since Vaughan was here and name eleven strikers that haven''t made a spectacular impact in that time
I think it''s a little unfair to include Kane in that list, given that injury curtailed his time here rather than any lack of opportunity. Similarly, Vaughan spent the majority of his stint here on the treatment table. Martin got a fair few games for us here, did he not, and improved as a player over the time. Grabban may not have improved his reputation but certainly went for a significantly higher fee than what we paid. Bamford had already done little at Palace before he did little here; I find it hard to see how the stagnation can be pinned on us there. I agree that Ricky, Lafferty and Becchio didn''t work out and that Mbokani probably ain''t any more desirable to the wider footballing world than he was before following his time here. I just think most teams of our stature/status will have had a similar throughput of strikers over the same window.

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Kodija looked promising (awkward and gangling so unpredictable) but far from the finished article and I don''t think there are many who were in that ground who would say he looks a player worth £10 million plus which is what someone is going to have to pay to sign him.

Good report Ricardo although I would also beg to differ about Naismith. He seems to play in bursts and those bursts fluctuate between spells of real excellence and complete sh*t. I don''t think he currently makes enough effort to win the ball back when he loses it. That said he is also nearly always involved in a few moves of real promise so is worth persevering with. I''m just not sure the balance is quite right with him central rather than Wes.

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Thanks 4 another good read Ric , what did you make of Canos? I didn''t think much of Murphy yesterday tbh...but Canos looked OK... worthy of a starting place sunday?

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If fully fit I expect AN will start Canos on Sunday. I thought he looked good and a step up on Murphy.

I''m still surprised that so many don''t seem to recognise the quality and industry of Naismith. To me he exudes quality and sometimes loose passes are happening because other players are not on the same wavelength. Along with Wes he is one of our top quality players.

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[quote user="ricardo"]If fully fit I expect AN will start Canos on Sunday. I thought he looked good and a step up on Murphy.

I''m still surprised that so many don''t seem to recognise the quality and industry of Naismith. To me he exudes quality and sometimes loose passes are happening because other players are not on the same wavelength. Along with Wes he is one of our top quality players.[/quote]I was going to post something similar on Naismith on another thread.To me Wes plays a pass to where a player is or is moving to and Naismith plays it to where he thinks a player should be going.In other words the rest of the team need to guess where Naismith wants them to run instead of him learning where or playing it to where they actually run. Basically the rest of the team need to be on Naismith`s wavelength instead of him being on the teams.

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@Chip20Fair point about comparing our experience in this respect with that of others, also about injury in the case of Kane. Nevertheless we have plenty of examples of strikers who we would have been pleased to sign opting for other clubs. The standard response on here is to blame either our recruitment, or our reluctance to pay the price, or our inability to compete in terms of wages (or some combination of all those factors). What I, in contrast, am inclined to attribute it to is our being perceived by our targets as unlikely to help them further their career objectives.

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