Hungerford v City

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Hungerford v City Empty Hungerford v City

Post by 2weirdtown on Fri Apr 19, 2019 5:42 pm

Dire form at present. Seems like everyone has worked out that packing their defence/midfield means we can't break them down. It's a recurring problem for us.
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Post by Luton Roman on Fri Apr 19, 2019 6:53 pm

Their keeper had first and only save in 88m. Great support. Must have had half the 596 crowd. Shame team didn't turn up.

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Post by tovid on Fri Apr 19, 2019 6:56 pm

Do you mean that last comment or were Hungerford just content to stop us from playing near their goal?

We have not had great results since the Torquay game. As 2WT says have teams looked at us and thought how are we going to stop them from playing?
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Post by Luton Roman on Fri Apr 19, 2019 7:15 pm

Clarke made 3 good saves. Only 1 team looked like scoring.

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Post by tovid on Sat Apr 20, 2019 9:06 am

I didn't go yesterday but it occurred to me during the St Albans game that our approach play has become ponderous. When Jerry first came he worked hard at instilling a quick passing and moving game. Now by the time they have swung the ball about in midfield for a bit the opposition defence is in position and we can't break them down.
We don't change the style of play at all to break up the defensive surety. If Hungerford can limit our opportunities anyone can.
That is why I was surprised about talk of 'win at any cost' because we are never going to see a succession of balls launched into the box a la Big Sam Allardyce.
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Post by sirkev on Sat Apr 20, 2019 10:20 am

It was another subdued performance to be honest. The die was cast in the first 10 minutes. Hungerford appeared nervous and we had them on the back foot. Mannie then put in a overhit cross in addition to an overhit corner which summed up our final ball delivery all match. Ryan Clarke once again showed why he is the unsung hero of this side with three great saves to keep us in the game. The introduction of Brunt, Artus and Hines in the second half improved the situation but when you have too many key players either out of form or coming back from injuries we are going to find it hard going. Cant fault the effort but we need to show more quality on Monday against a dangerous Oxford side.

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Post by westonpundit on Sat Apr 20, 2019 10:51 am

Disappointing result yesterday and agree with the comments here but one thing to mention is that the pitch conditions are not helping us at this time of the season. Difficult to move the ball quickly on dry and hard pitches that even top players would struggle with if they were to play on anything other than bowling greens in the premiership.

This was the case yesterday and with the ball bouncing up repeatedly ....and with a relatively small albeit skillful front line and midfield then larger oppositions are going to make it really tough to play in the way we did in the first part of the season. I think Brunt gives us options but even then players need to get around him to work off his knock downs.

Twerton pitch thanks to Andrew and his team will be better suited to us on Monday so hopefully we can get back to winning ways.

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Post by stillmanjunior on Sat Apr 20, 2019 11:02 am

tovid wrote:We don't change the style of play at all to break up the defensive surety. If Hungerford can limit our opportunities anyone can.

We altered it yesterday, went direct in the second half. Changed formation and players about. Can't say there was no Plan B, by the end we'd almost gone through the alphabet. I expected us to win yesterday but Hungerford obviously have something about them - beat St Albans 5-0 at home, taken four points from Billericay, drew recently against Woking and Welling only narrowly won there. We found them on one of their resolute days unlike their last two pathetic performances at Twerton where we could have hit double figures both games. I thought they might go for it a bit more - a point against a play-off team is decent in general, but a win would have really increased their chances of survival. Torquay will want to finish on a high against them on Saturday so they're relying on other results going their way and beating East Thurrock last game, which they should as the Essex lot will probably be down by then.

The problem is obvious - we don't score enough. Only twice in thirteen matches since Torquay have we netted two or more. Other than yesterday, that's been a case of us making a hash of good openings or denied by inspired keeping. Against St Albans we easily could have scored three, for example. Yesterday was the first time in a while, probably this season, actually, where I can say we barely threatened an opposition goalkeeper. That's probably why I sounded quite deflated on the radio, other than a flurry of corners at the start I couldn't see where we would score. Some of the set-piece deliveries were well below par.

Oxford are often quite an open, expansive side which could suit us. I don't see any point in them coming to Twerton and changing their style to shut up shop - they have nothing to play for, grinding out a goalless draw is barely morale-boosting. Not like they'll be denying a rival team a play-off spot. They don't draw very often and have some decent, creative players. I'm making it sound like they shouldn't have the nerve to do what they can to get a result, clear bias. That said, before today's game they've won four from five so it's not going to be a walk in the park.
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Post by Luton Roman on Sat Apr 20, 2019 7:47 pm

Well we need to keep Tshimanga quiet. Scored pen today and 3rd top scorer in League with 23. Wonder what he's doing next year..

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Post by Marc Monitor on Sun Apr 21, 2019 8:19 pm

There has been a lot of talk about us being shot-shy but our other problem is that our crosses, corners and free-kicks are too often overhit or don't pass the first player. Straker's strength has been going forward this season but, for the last few games, he hasn't been his usual excellent self and this has shown itself particularly with getting balls into the box. Not pointing the finger at him as many players haven't been effective at this recently - it's just that he is usually very good at it. Having said that, often even if the balls were getting into the box, we aren't flooding that goal area with players (as has been mentioned regularly recently). Jerry was also alluding to this when he said that players should be risking getting a bit of a knock to get a head or foot to the ball in the box.

Whereas, for the first half in the St Alban's City game, we were unlucky not to get anything due to saves, goal-line blocks and hit posts, on Friday, we didn't even produce a shot until the 88th minute and this was against a pretty dire team (who I was also surprised didn't make more of an effort). I don't even think they particularly found us out or packed the defence and midfield. Indeed, having spent the train trip talking about how there is often more drama at level that the more sterile and risk-averse professional game, it was a terrible advert for the game at this level. It had more the feel of a pre-season friendly where no-one wants to get hurt (although, of course, plenty did - a friend said that Lee should have got MOTM) or a dead rubber last game of the season between two teams safely in mid-table obscurity. Obviously, it was hot and the pitch was hard but none of the players who could change a game for us did. Obviously, we have had injuries as well - which has been a major issue this season - but some of the players on the pitch yesterday could often provide a little bit of magic earlier in the season.

Don't get me wrong, with the injuries and the size of the squad, Jerry and the lads have done brilliantly, possibly over-achieved in those circumstances, to get us in the play-offs. It will be just a real shame after such great season - with such improved attendances and off-field activities as well - not to be able to give the play-offs a real crack.
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Post by comrade powell on Tue Apr 23, 2019 12:08 am

A neutral's account of the match….

https://thegrassrootstourist.com/2019/04/21/hungerford-town/
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Post by BenE on Tue Apr 23, 2019 7:33 pm

That is very entertaining with some well chosen prose and terrific photos.
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