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Post by Luton Roman on Sat Mar 15, 2014 5:00 pm

We win 1-0, yay !

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Post by stillmanjunior on Sat Mar 15, 2014 7:21 pm

Pretty straightforward really. Dorchester started quite brightly but second half we must have had about 80% of possession at least. Think Mellor only had to deal with back-passes in the second half.

Six points against two poor sides - can't do any more than that.
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Post by RUDI GULITS on Sat Mar 15, 2014 8:30 pm

i wish Mellor would sort his kicking out.
i cringe everytime he has to kick it as you never know where its going to go.
another 3 pionts thou happy days.
and another clean sheet.
roll on next saturday
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Post by Roman Mike on Sat Mar 15, 2014 10:24 pm

I'd be more worried about the poor finishing. We won't normally get that many chances. Need to be far more clinical.
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Post by Dark Star on Sun Mar 16, 2014 1:35 am

Mmmm…  OK it was three points but the first half was dire. You would be hard-pressed to put a fag paper between the two teams despite the fact that Dorchester look destined to be playing their old rivals Weymouth in the Southern League next year.

I must admit though I was puzzled. If we still hold out hopes of a play-off place, why did we front-up with Reid and Wilson and keep Stearn and Pratt on the bench? Wilson was largely anonymous while Reid was disappointing. When we brought on Stearn and Pratt things started to improve. For the last fifteen minutes we battered Dorchester and it is a wonder that the score remained at 1-0, despite their impressive collection of red/yellow cards.  Why can’t we do that from the start?

It appears that Stearn can’t buy a start but it was clear from the loud applause when he came on that most of the crowd appreciate his efforts. He is a great entertainer, value for money and gives defences nightmares. Yes, he occasionally holds the ball too long and he arguably failed to score today, but his commitment is way above some players on the pitch. It was also noteworthy how the game also changed when Pratt came on. Just compare his work rate with that of Reid/Wilson: no contest.

Whilst I am not privy to the management’s insight (obviously) I do despair sometimes at their apparent unwillingness to unleash our talent until late in the day on the opposition. The fact that that we have drawn more games than others in the league is, I think, testament to their reticence. With Watkins (who was by far and away the most talented footballer on display today), Stearn and Pratt we have one of the most potent attacks in the league. Why do management not deploy them accordingly? Reid is a biggish old-school striker but that’s not the way we play with the pace that we have at our disposal. A conundrum……just like Line of Duty.

Finally, a shout-out for Joe Burnell.  I am not a big fan of Joe but he was my MotM today. Yes, he scored a goal but he also displayed total commitment, broke up attacks and appeared all over the park. Top marks.

In summary, why is it so nail-biting to watch Bath City when we have the talent available? We have some of the players to bring us success, but do we have the Management? Mmmmm.

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Post by Midsomer-steve on Sun Mar 16, 2014 2:12 am

Dark Star wrote:Mmmm…  OK it was three points but the first half was dire. You would be hard-pressed to put a fag paper between the two teams despite the fact that Dorchester look destined to be playing their old rivals Weymouth in the Southern League next year.

I must admit though I was puzzled. If we still hold out hopes of a play-off place, why did we front-up with Reid and Wilson and keep Stearn and Pratt on the bench? Wilson was largely anonymous while Reid was disappointing. When we brought on Stearn and Pratt things started to improve. For the last fifteen minutes we battered Dorchester and it is a wonder that the score remained at 1-0, despite their impressive collection of red/yellow cards.  Why can’t we do that from the start?

It appears that Stearn can’t buy a start but it was clear from the loud applause when he came on that most of the crowd appreciate his efforts. He is a great entertainer, value for money and gives defences nightmares. Yes, he occasionally holds the ball too long and he arguably failed to score today, but his commitment is way above some players on the pitch. It was also noteworthy how the game also changed when Pratt came on. Just compare his work rate with that of Reid/Wilson: no contest.

Whilst I am not privy to the management’s insight (obviously) I do despair sometimes at their apparent unwillingness to unleash our talent until late in the day on the opposition. The fact that that we have drawn more games than others in the league is, I think, testament to their reticence. With Watkins (who was by far and away the most talented footballer on display today), Stearn and Pratt we have one of the most potent attacks in the league. Why do management not deploy them accordingly? Reid is a biggish old-school striker but that’s not the way we play with the pace that we have at our disposal. A conundrum……just like Line of Duty.

Finally, a shout-out for Joe Burnell.  I am not a big fan of Joe but he was my MotM today. Yes, he scored a goal but he also displayed total commitment, broke up attacks and appeared all over the park. Top marks.

In summary, why is it so nail-biting to watch Bath City when we have the talent available? We have some of the players to bring us success, but do we have the Management? Mmmmm.

No - I don't think we have.  Sad 
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Post by Twerton Parker on Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:03 am

Dark Star wrote:Mmmm…  OK it was three points but the first half was dire.

It appears that Stearn can’t buy a start but it was clear from the loud applause when he came on that most of the crowd appreciate his efforts. He is a great entertainer, value for money and gives defences nightmares. Yes, he occasionally holds the ball too long and he arguably failed to score today, but his commitment is way above some players on the pitch. It was also noteworthy how the game also changed when Pratt came on. Just compare his work rate with that of Reid/Wilson: no contest.

Whilst I am not privy to the management’s insight (obviously) I do despair sometimes at their apparent unwillingness to unleash our talent until late in the day on the opposition. The fact that that we have drawn more games than others in the league is, I think, testament to their reticence. With Watkins (who was by far and away the most talented footballer on display today), Stearn and Pratt we have one of the most potent attacks in the league. ... We have some of the players to bring us success, but do we have the Management? Mmmmm.


Some interesting thoughts here.  I wasn't at yesterday's game so I'm going to have to take what Dark Star says at face value but, assuming that he hasn't made all of this up (and why would he?) it brings me back to one obvious conclusion: if the top management at the club want to improve the club and its financial position they will do well to heed the lessons learned yesterday.  The crowd pays money to be entertained and Stern certainly appears to do that.  

If we play better with him on the pitch than off it (and he's not injured) then he should be starting games.  Ditto Pratt.  If the club is to move forward rather than remain moribund in the Conference South then it has to have greater success on the pitch and starting with players like these two ought to give us the chance of getting that success.  Yes, I acknowledge that the two recent seasons in the national Conference cost us a fortune that we didn't have and I don't have a clue as to how it wouldn't if we went up again, but not to set out with the intention of making the best of what we have seems bonkers to me.  

With the Community Day coming up next week and a lot off volunteers putting a huge amount of effort into getting a decent crowd there I very much hope that Adie and Arch recognise the importance of serving up something that will not only see us win the game but do so in a manner that will make those who've come along for the first time want to return again and again...........................

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Post by yuffie on Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:25 am

the stearn situation has been much discussed in the "why you don't attend ..." thread but i thought yesterday was the first game i've seen since pre the dorchester away game where he has had a major impact either starting or as a sub - he was probably helped by the fact dorchester had to commit men forward by the time he came on but it will be interesting to see if he gets a start next week

it was also pleasing to see wilson given a start - something that a few people have been asking for - on the back of his two goals against cheddar and whilst he didn't do anything outstanding he would certainly give us an different option if he stays for next season

i think reid will always be a player who divides opinion but i don't think he lacked effort yesterday particularly when he could easily have got their keeper sent off for taking him out

at the end of the day team selection will always divide people - for example all the complaints about playing one up front have had to go quiet this season - but we are now five points short of our total last season so unless we have a collaspe of bromley-esq proportions we should at least show some progress this year - given that a play-off place looks just a step too far it seems to me that at its best (and fitness) we have a team that isn't far off but the consistency needed to be right at the top is the thing missing

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Post by BenE on Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:35 am

good post yuffie. I think there have been a number of players who have not been at their best this season. Keats Connolly Allen Adelsbury and Low have all worked hard but not really been firing on all cylinders.

That's basically our midfield. But in the last few weeks first Keats and then Allen have started to show the type of form expected of them. I thought Allen was terrific yesterday.

I agree we are not far off. I thought Reid was good first half but faded badly and would be happy for him to be retained as long as he was prepared to continue working to get fit. Wilson needs to do more for me but he deserves another chance to show that he can.

But fans will not be happy if he continues to get them at the expense of Stearn.
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Post by Corstonian on Sun Mar 16, 2014 3:24 pm

Dark Star wrote:Dorchester look destined to be playing their old rivals Weymouth in the Southern League next year.

That's the unfortunate thing, particularly if Maidenhead also drop - other than WSM we now don't have anything approaching a "local derby" - the next best could be Staines, Farnborough or Aldershot by my reckoning. I assume Gloucester will continue to be designated a northern club so no sign of any improvement in the situation anytime soon. Pity because real local rivalry always generates interest and headlines.

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Post by 2weirdtown on Sun Mar 16, 2014 3:38 pm

Dark Star wrote:

Whilst I am not privy to the management’s insight (obviously) I do despair sometimes at their apparent unwillingness to unleash our talent until late in the day on the opposition. The fact that that we have drawn more games than others in the league is, I think, testament to their reticence. With Watkins (who was by far and away the most talented footballer on display today), Stearn and Pratt we have one of the most potent attacks in the league. Why do management not deploy them accordingly? Reid is a biggish old-school striker but that’s not the way we play with the pace that we have at our disposal. A conundrum……just like Line of Duty.

Finally, a shout-out for Joe Burnell.  I am not a big fan of Joe but he was my MotM today. Yes, he scored a goal but he also displayed total commitment, broke up attacks and appeared all over the park. Top marks.

In summary, why is it so nail-biting to watch Bath City when we have the talent available? We have some of the players to bring us success, but do we have the Management? Mmmmm.

Maybe the management would say yesterday's match against struggling opponents was a good time to see what Reid and Wilson could do. It was Wilson's cross to the near post that led to our goal.
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Post by Ashley on Sun Mar 16, 2014 4:22 pm

Corstonian wrote:
Dark Star wrote:Dorchester look destined to be playing their old rivals Weymouth in the Southern League next year.

That's the unfortunate thing, particularly if Maidenhead also drop - other than WSM we now don't have anything approaching a "local derby" - the next best could be Staines, Farnborough or Aldershot by my reckoning. I assume Gloucester will continue to be designated a northern club so no sign of any improvement in the situation anytime soon. Pity because real local rivalry always generates interest and headlines.

I thought Gloucester were in the north by choice because the M5 is easier for them than the M4? I guess eventually they might not have a choice.
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Post by LB on Sun Mar 16, 2014 5:13 pm

I think Dark Star summed it up perfectly. The first half seemed to be a repeat of the opening halves against Whitehawk and Basingstoke (to name but two games this season), where we looked off the pace and rarely like scoring. The second half was better, which really wasn't difficult, but a better side than Dorchester would surely have punished all those missed chances.

Have to agree that starting the game with Stearn and Pratt on the bench, which we have done before, seemed a strange choice especially against a team who had averaged two goals against in each game. I console myself with the thought that management know what they are doing! Neutral 

Also have to agree with him about MoM. I thought Joe Burnell had a superb game and definitely deserved it. Didn't think Andy Watkins had a particularly good game but he came into it more towards the end when Dorchester changed right backs.  

With the play-offs only a reality if we win all our remaining games and the likes of Dover don't take advantage of their games in hand it would be nice to see some of the younger players given a chance, even if only as substitutes, but history suggests that won't happen.

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Post by comrade powell on Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:00 pm

Twerton Parker wrote:

If we play better with him on the pitch than off it (and he's not injured) then he should be starting games.  Ditto Pratt.  If the club is to move forward rather than remain moribund in the Conference South then it has to have greater success on the pitch and starting with players like these two ought to give us the chance of getting that success.  

and yet, as i pointed out on another thread, the stats don't back up that view. we have actually picked up more points on average in those games which stearn has not started than in those he has - a trend which was continued yesterday.
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Post by Twerton Parker on Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:15 pm

comrade powell wrote:
Twerton Parker wrote:

If we play better with him on the pitch than off it (and he's not injured) then he should be starting games.  Ditto Pratt.  If the club is to move forward rather than remain moribund in the Conference South then it has to have greater success on the pitch and starting with players like these two ought to give us the chance of getting that success.  

and yet, as i pointed out on another thread, the stats don't back up that view. we have actually picked up more points on average in those games which stearn has not started than in those he has - a trend which was continued yesterday.

But Dark Star was of the opinion that the team played better once he and Pratt came on (not that I'm disputing your statistics).  So to pull your stats and Dark Star's thoughts together, are more chances being created (and then missed) when these two are on?

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Post by comrade powell on Sun Mar 16, 2014 7:33 pm

For me, the turning point of yesterday's game was the red card. I don't think dorchester played like a foot of the table team before then and our solitary goal didn't look like it would be enough. So i agree with dark star that we were well on top once the subs were made, but it was against a tiring team, which should have set things up nicely for stearn. but as i've said before, he is not a team player, as was shown yet again with his dribble right across the edge of the box before shooting well wide, instead of releasing the ball to an unmarked team mate. and elsewhere, kelston koppite reported....

The final chance of the game fell to Stearn when he latched on to a perfect cross field ball from Watkins, only for the wideman to fire wastefully over the crossbar.

this was a far easier chance than one that he wasted just 7 days before at maidenhead - but it had exactly the same result. imagine the gnashing of teeth on here had josh low been as careless.

so, to answer your question, yes we probably did create more chances with stearn's appearance but it made no difference to the scoreline. and would he have had the same effect if he had started? i know he can do absolutely no wrong in most people's eyes and the management is public enemy number 1 for not starting him. but they pick a team to win a game and the player is doing little to persuade them that they should change their minds from employing him to run at tired defences in the final stages of the game.
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Post by stillmanjunior on Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:58 pm

The sending off certainly helped as Dorchester basically had to go for it, a draw is no good to them at the moment, which meant they left so many gaps at the back. If we had a player sent off for a total lack of discipline for that I'd be livid, Crittenden completely lost it.

Not sure if it was the turning point though. Bar them hitting the bar early on in the half I can't remember them being remotely threatening, even with three up front. We should have won a lot more comfortably and missed chances, including the Stearn one you mentioned, meant an unnecessary tetchy finale.

To be honest I've known for a long time that it doesn't matter what Arch does, he will just never be accepted by a lot as manager, the same that claim John Relish or Adie Britton didn't do well in their tenures. I'm pretty sure Arch could start Stearn every game, earn promotion through the play-offs, discover the missing Boeing 777 and find a cure for cancer, but would still be complained at because he doesn't talk enough in the dugout.
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Post by Bridgeyate on Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:17 pm

Give the guy a break ! Strikers have to be sellfish at times , the good ones are .He is Rusty. Why is that ?????

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Post by Bridgeyate on Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:21 pm

This is conference south not Premership ! He is one of the best players we have without a doubt,entertaining,passionate,skillful,and committed.

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Post by comrade powell on Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:25 pm

Because he is not playing regularly! And why is that? I don't totally agree with Junior, as I think the management frequently give out the wrong messages, but they can only start with 11 players. Whether people like it or not, no player seems guaranteed of that starting place. But you would play someone, irrespective of their current form?
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Post by yuffie on Sun Mar 16, 2014 11:15 pm

Bridgeyate wrote:Give the guy a break ! Strikers have to be sellfish at times , the good ones are

but he's not a striker, he's a winger - and if anyone in a team shouldn't be selfish it's in that position

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Post by BenE on Mon Mar 17, 2014 8:41 am

If I had a criticism of Archie it is that it is his job to work with Stearn and make him better. teach him to get his head up when running towards goal.

having said that Ross created a number of chances for other players too on Saturday and none of them were converted either.
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Post by Mcnulty on Mon Mar 17, 2014 10:14 am

I actually thought Reid did pretty well and he does give us an option to play a different way. Unfortunately i thought it sidelined Watkins a bit and I didnt see Wilson really added a lot although his cross did lead to the goal.
I thought MoM would go to Burnell given his rare goal capping a very good performance but personally i thought Walsh was imperious at the back and deserved the nod.
Stearn, I find his continued presence on the bench disappointing but have to accept it as the norm now. The management seem to know what they are doing; i can see why Walsh might be seen as an step forward over Preecey for example (ignoring how the situation was actually handled , it seems a decent footballing decision) . I just dont personally see the logic in giving Stearn so little game time but they must have their reasons.
He missed a very good chance but as always made an impact.
Dorchester actually try to play a bit of football which seems to spell trouble if you want to stay in this league. I'd quite like Whitehawk to stay up as their directors were quite a good bunch and they were also a decent footballing side.

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Post by Mcnulty on Mon Mar 17, 2014 10:20 am

yuffie wrote:
Bridgeyate wrote:Give the guy a break ! Strikers have to be sellfish at times , the good ones are

but he's not a striker, he's a winger - and if anyone in a team shouldn't be selfish it's in that position


Personally I thought that despite one overly mazey run when he had Pratt available on the right and instead shot well wide, Stearn actually did play with his head up and produced some decent balls and chances for others.

Again, I feel he is judged by some rather harshly compared to other players whose obvious flaws are accepted.
Wilson gave the ball away often, Low when he plays on that right side often doesnt challenge at all when he loses it. Stearn it seems, to some, isnt in the side because he isnt the complete player. Well, we havent got many of those!
As some of his fans have said (and I confess i am one) if he produced an end product every time he beat two defenders then he wouldnt be playing Dorchester on Saturdays in front of 500 fans!

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Post by comrade powell on Mon Mar 17, 2014 1:33 pm

But there has been virtually no end product in any of his recent appearances! Doing 20 stepovers on Saturday might entertain some, but if there is no end product, should such a player be an automatic selection? I return to the point I made yesterday - the management can only select 11. Had Low been selected in his place, he would presumably be the scapegoat for many, but he didn't. So who would be left out to accommodate Stearn? I expect the answer will be Wilson. Yet there was the call last week to give the lad a chance...
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