Match Report v Man City

Neil Dawson

Fans' Favourite
#1
Champions Inflict Narrow Defeat

It was football Jim....but not as we know it. The sequence of bizarre games at The Vitality continued this afternoon with Bournemouth playing 90 minutes without having a shot of any description...a first for a home game. 20% possession in a game played entirely as an attack v defence training exercise. It’s not even worth writing a report on so forgive me for being shorter than normal.

First, credit where credits due, as a display of defensive concentration goes it was excellent. Two centre halfs with 5 PL appearances between them combining with Ake to excellently track runs of world class opponents and a disciplined midfield shape will have delighted Eddie after the collapse v Arsenal.

Eddie produced a surprise line up, Gosling making way for Brooks in midfield and Ibe and Mousset stepping down for Simpson to come into a back five and Daniels return with Smith moving forwards. It signalled a defensive outlook but even the most pessimistic of fans would have struggled to picture the tactics being so defensive with our reluctance to put anyone in City’s half. We made Tony Pulis’s West Brom look like the Ajax team of the 70s.

City had three good chances but Silva, Ottamendi and Aguero fired high or wide. Boruc handled well but kicked like a man with a 50p piece for a boot. The main focus of a dull half was the most astonishingly biased refereeing performances I have seen. It didn’t effect the result but it had to be witnessed to be believed.

Ht Bournemouth 0 City 0

The second half continued like the first...all of it. Bournemouth set up shuffling side to side like a rugby league team defending a last minute lead. City playing infinite triangles and moving constantly and almost bewitchingly. Boruc marred an otherwise excellent saving display by missing a soft near post effort by MAHREZ after Silvas pass.

The goal didn’t interrupt the relentlessness. Boruc then moved into brilliant Boruc territory making superb reflex saves to deny Sterling, Ageuro onto the bar and Kompany as well as many, many routine saves as City racked up 23 efforts. Eddie threw on the Mouss and Ibe to no avail as City’s ability to win back the ball in hunting packs was, if you weren’t a Bournemouth fan, a joy to behold. I’d love to know how many times we touched the ball in the penalty area...

And that’s it...

Bournemouth 0 City 1

Boruc 7 Brilliant but lapse of concentration crucial.

Clyne 5. Poor I thought positionally and in possession
Mepham 8. Some excellent positional play and reading of the game.
Simpson 7. As always looks composed and solid in top company.
Ake 7. Watchful, athletic and solid.
Daniels 6. Decent enough defensively against Silvas quick feet.

Smith 7. The most energetic going forwards and good covering.
Surman 5. Game passed him by, understandably with the opponents.
Brooks 6. Some intelligent moments but starved of possession.
Fraser 5. Very poor on the ball today.

King 5. Hard work but poor in possession.

Mom. Would have been Boruc but not with that goal. The three centre halfs were good and for me Mepham was the best.

Verdict.

Today was everything about why I don’t fear relegation like some on here. In no other league in England do you get games like this. I know some people seemed to enjoy this display but it’s not for me. Yes it was great to see us concentrate in defence and Simpson and Mepham will take a lot from this game but for Willo to suggest we have sorted our defence out without realising we gave up attacking to do it was just mad. On top of watching your side refuse to attack you also have the irritation of the refs treatment of the top teams. Give me an end to end v Brentford and a bumbling fair ref any day of the week.

Still, we know why Eddie did it. We couldn’t take another tonking into the easier run in. He was right too...we couldn’t and we haven’t. Job done in that respect. Thankfully that’s it apart from Spurs and we can get back to football.

So...good positives for individuals and embarrassment avoided. We have very few wins since October though and this side needs to now show us, particularly away from home, the effort and energy it started the season with. Anything less will be very poor.
 
#2
I think Eddie went for Surman and Brooks in midfield as they are our best 2 in possession so could hopefully get us a foothold in the game. In hindsight we might have been better going for a pairing with a bit more bite. Having better ball skills is useless if there is no one in the side to even try to win the ball.

On the positive side, the levels of concentration to restrict City as we did was impressive. Mepham and Simpson both stood up to the test and that is an encouraging sign for the future.

It’s a shame on the rare occasions we had to counter attack, our touch or final pass wasn’t up to its usual standard. Not surprising really given the amount of effort they were putting into keeping the shape.

I’m a lot happier tonight than Wednesday. That performance was a shambles and all the criticism on here was totally justified. The application today was infinitely better. We know this team can and will score goals so if we match today’s application, we’ll start winning games very soon.

The only regret today is we never got that 1 chance at the end which often happens when it’s only a one goal margin. When you set up like we did, you are hoping for a set piece to swing the ball in. I thought there were 2 or 3 fouls in their half which weren’t given, so it’s a little frustrating we never had that chance for the aforementioned set piece.
 
#3
Champions Inflict Narrow Defeat

It was football Jim....but not as we know it. The sequence of bizarre games at The Vitality continued this afternoon with Bournemouth playing 90 minutes without having a shot of any description...a first for a home game. 20% possession in a game played entirely as an attack v defence training exercise. It’s not even worth writing a report on so forgive me for being shorter than normal.

First, credit where credits due, as a display of defensive concentration goes it was excellent. Two centre halfs with 5 PL appearances between them combining with Ake to excellently track runs of world class opponents and a disciplined midfield shape will have delighted Eddie after the collapse v Arsenal.

Eddie produced a surprise line up, Gosling making way for Brooks in midfield and Ibe and Mousset stepping down for Simpson to come into a back five and Daniels return with Smith moving forwards. It signalled a defensive outlook but even the most pessimistic of fans would have struggled to picture the tactics being so defensive with our reluctance to put anyone in City’s half. We made Tony Pulis’s West Brom look like the Ajax team of the 70s.

City had three good chances but Silva, Ottamendi and Aguero fired high or wide. Boruc handled well but kicked like a man with a 50p piece for a boot. The main focus of a dull half was the most astonishingly biased refereeing performances I have seen. It didn’t effect the result but it had to be witnessed to be believed.

Ht Bournemouth 0 City 0

The second half continued like the first...all of it. Bournemouth set up shuffling side to side like a rugby league team defending a last minute lead. City playing infinite triangles and moving constantly and almost bewitchingly. Boruc marred an otherwise excellent saving display by missing a soft near post effort by MAHREZ after Silvas pass.

The goal didn’t interrupt the relentlessness. Boruc then moved into brilliant Boruc territory making superb reflex saves to deny Sterling, Ageuro onto the bar and Kompany as well as many, many routine saves as City racked up 23 efforts. Eddie threw on the Mouss and Ibe to no avail as City’s ability to win back the ball in hunting packs was, if you weren’t a Bournemouth fan, a joy to behold. I’d love to know how many times we touched the ball in the penalty area...

And that’s it...

Bournemouth 0 City 1

Boruc 7 Brilliant but lapse of concentration crucial.

Clyne 5. Poor I thought positionally and in possession
Mepham 8. Some excellent positional play and reading of the game.
Simpson 7. As always looks composed and solid in top company.
Ake 7. Watchful, athletic and solid.
Daniels 6. Decent enough defensively against Silvas quick feet.

Smith 7. The most energetic going forwards and good covering.
Surman 5. Game passed him by, understandably with the opponents.
Brooks 6. Some intelligent moments but starved of possession.
Fraser 5. Very poor on the ball today.

King 5. Hard work but poor in possession.

Mom. Would have been Boruc but not with that goal. The three centre halfs were good and for me Mepham was the best.

Verdict.

Today was everything about why I don’t fear relegation like some on here. In no other league in England do you get games like this. I know some people seemed to enjoy this display but it’s not for me. Yes it was great to see us concentrate in defence and Simpson and Mepham will take a lot from this game but for Willo to suggest we have sorted our defence out without realising we gave up attacking to do it was just mad. On top of watching your side refuse to attack you also have the irritation of the refs treatment of the top teams. Give me an end to end v Brentford and a bumbling fair ref any day of the week.

Still, we know why Eddie did it. We couldn’t take another tonking into the easier run in. He was right too...we couldn’t and we haven’t. Job done in that respect. Thankfully that’s it apart from Spurs and we can get back to football.

So...good positives for individuals and embarrassment avoided. We have very few wins since October though and this side needs to now show us, particularly away from home, the effort and energy it started the season with. Anything less will be very poor.
Fair report Neil although it sounds like I enjoyed it more than you did! Give me City at home any day rather than Brentford. There was a masochistic thrill in watching our brave young lads matching up against some of the world’s best. I’ve never seen a game like it to be honest. When you’re cheering a throw-in or a press which leads to a passback to their keeper...as you say, it was football but not as we know it. No corners, no shots, not a single chance created. But I feel a certain pride in the team tonight. Funny old world, eh?
 

Neil Dawson

Fans' Favourite
#4
Fair report Neil although it sounds like I enjoyed it more than you did! Give me City at home any day rather than Brentford. There was a masochistic thrill in watching our brave young lads matching up against some of the world’s best. I’ve never seen a game like it to be honest. When you’re cheering a throw-in or a press which leads to a passback to their keeper...as you say, it was football but not as we know it. No corners, no shots, not a single chance created. But I feel a certain pride in the team tonight. Funny old world, eh?
It was the first time in Premier League history that a team hasn’t had a shot at home. Newport troubled them more than us. I can’t find that enjoyable. I was bored stiff most of the game. I can admire the defensive application and the need to not have a second humiliation in the week but we were never going to get that one chance at the end playing like that so I don’t really see the point.

I didn’t expect anything from the game don’t get me wrong but I hope we never do that again.
 
#6
It was the first time in Premier League history that a team hasn’t had a shot at home. Newport troubled them more than us. I can’t find that enjoyable. I was bored stiff most of the game. I can admire the defensive application and the need to not have a second humiliation in the week but we were never going to get that one chance at the end playing like that so I don’t really see the point.

I didn’t expect anything from the game don’t get me wrong but I hope we never do that again.
I think the midweek tonking played a huge part in events today. Another 5-0, 5-1 had to be avoided at all costs. It could have damaged confidence beyond repair. From that point of view I think Eddie succeeded. But yes I agree, I wouldn’t want to watch that every week!
 
#7
Well I enjoyed the match. Thought we were in the match far more I thought we would be. Showed we could shut up shop when we needed to.

Funny how (in general not Neil or this thread) that the same people who moan that the likes of Surman are still at the club or still picked are the ones who also moan loudest when a team made up of half reserves actually stands up to one of the best club sides in the world. Becuase that is what they are. Their passing and ball control was simply another level.

If someone watching today enjoyed Wednesday night more, they have a screw lose.
 

Neil Dawson

Fans' Favourite
#9
I think the midweek tonking played a huge part in events today. Another 5-0, 5-1 had to be avoided at all costs. It could have damaged confidence beyond repair. From that point of view I think Eddie succeeded. But yes I agree, I wouldn’t want to watch that every week!
Yes. That’s totally why we did it and like I said in the report it was arguably the right thing to do but we could have been a tad more expansive last fifteen once the humiliation had been avoided.
 
#10
Yes. That’s totally why we did it and like I said in the report it was arguably the right thing to do but we could have been a tad more expansive last fifteen once the humiliation had been avoided.
One head down mindless run by Mousset into their centre halves was us going for it in the last fifteen....
Agree had to avoid another hammering - It would have been an interesting reaction to say the least from the home crowd !
As awful as the ref was first half he saw Fraser and King both fall over trying to win dodgy free kicks and he wasn’t going to have it - perhaps if they’d tried retaining the ball and staying on their feet instead ?
Our record since October is 4 wins 2 draws and 14 defeats - which is desperately poor - agree Neil now we have the allegedly “ run of winnable games “ coming up its time for the management and players to sort it out and finish the season well .
 
#11
Brave,disciplined display I thought.
The few counter attack changes we had fizzled out unfortunately.
At 0-1 we always had a "punchers chance" prefer that to the mauling at the Emirates.
Think the players will see way more positives today vs. Wednesday's performance.
We got beat by probably one of the top 5 teams in the world!
Rose tints rule!!
 
#13
Worst MOTD ...EVER..for me.......to watch bloody Saints take it to Man U at OT...ok they lost thankfully...but a brillaint stab at it......

Then ...I see my bloody Cherries at DC....doing a tribute act to a Vision of Taunton Town from the depths of Devon parking Six Horse and Carts, Five Cows and Score of Pigs in front of BarcabloodyLona at the Nou Camp...Lummie Charley...how Embracing.......sorry Embarrassing!
And even then it seemed MC should have got at least 5...
Sorry to any stray Taunton fans......I just plucked something Rural out of the Air....it seemed to suit !
 
#15
Worst MOTD ...EVER..for me.......to watch bloody Saints take it to Man U at OT...ok they lost thankfully...but a brillaint stab at it......

Then ...I see my bloody Cherries at DC....doing a tribute act to a Vision of Taunton Town from the depths of Devon parking Six Horse and Carts, Five Cows and Score of Pigs in front of BarcabloodyLona at the Nou Camp...Lummie Charley...how Embracing.......sorry Embarrassing!
And even then it seemed MC should have got at least 5...
Sorry to any stray Taunton fans......I just plucked something Rural out of the Air....it seemed to suit !
Pretty certain you’re saying the same as Neil in your own inimitable way, Bill!!

I would have to completely and utterly agree with you both. Yes, we needed to avoid another tonking but to not have had a single shot, a corner, let alone a shot on target is quite frankly something of an embarrassment. And that’s from an avid supporter - through thick and thin - of 46 years.

I’m not usually one to criticise, quite the opposite in fact. However as Neil said, Newport troubled them far more than we did - 8 shots to none, 3 shots on target to none, 2 corners to none, 23% possession to our 18%. Not a single effort on goal in almost 100 minutes of football!! These stats together with our recent away record, and performances to boot, really are embarrassing.

I will obviously continue supporting the club, management and the players in every way possible until the day I die but quite frankly that is just not good enough.
 
#16
Hadrian, China, Berlin, Atlantic, Trump, AFCB. All impressive (except Trump) but ultimately a waste of resources. Discuss.
Plenty of scope there.....where to start? Hadrian built a Wall but not the one in China. Trump is trying to build one. They knocked down theirs in Berlin. Afcb are not building much at present. Not sure whats left of the Nazi Atlantic wall...just a few ruins I think!
 
#17
I agree with Neil,although I kind of enjoyed the game,because we didn't get thrashed,it was horrible to watch.
If you were a young fan watching your first ever game,you probably wouldn't come back.
Anti football of the worst kind,but with the personnel Eddie had available,I totally understand why he did it.
 
#18
As someone consigned by points to away matches, I'd gladly trade every game I've attended since Watford for today's game. We did have a punchers chance and if Callum had played something tells me we would have made one. Keep that concentration and intensity next week: it was less than a year ago we got pasted 0-4 at Huddersfield. Time to start winning again.
 
#19
Plenty of scope there.....where to start? Hadrian built a Wall but not the one in China. Trump is trying to build one. They knocked down theirs in Berlin. Afcb are not building much at present. Not sure whats left of the Nazi Atlantic wall...just a few ruins I think!
All walls designed to keep out a foe. All expensively assembled. All looked daunting at first but ultimately futile exercises, either breached or bypassed. This afternoon felt a bit of a parallel.
 
#20
At the end of the day... its all part of Boscombe/ Afcb History....just like 0-9 at Lincoln and 4-0 v Chelsea. Eddie is still our best ever manager and one of the best in Britain...and we never give up supporting him and them...taking the rough and smooth equally! Huddersfield awaits....now there is a club with some History! ...and some equally dedicated fans!
All I have to say to Man City and their ever loyal patient fans is....hope they win it !