YeOldeHamiltonian wrote:I was fearful when I saw the team but we played well and were hard done by.
This just about sums it up.
We had to field a brand new central defence, yet we went toe-to-toe with one of the best teams in the country, and were ten minutes from pulling off a surprise result.
A lot of things worked well: our midfield competed; our full backs both did their job; Tshiembe was an assured presence in the heart of defence; Ziggy marked Candeias out of the game; Brustad and Miller caused them problems. Our approach was perhaps over-cautious, but who knows how a more gung-ho style might have left us open at the back? Late on, we went for it - Ziggy was understandably disappointed to come off, but it was a tactical masterstroke, as Boyd equalised, and if we'd got a result, everyone would have been praising Martin Canning for that move.
Some things didn't work so well: Woods could have done better with the two goals from open play; Brustad was too isolated (what's the Norwegian for plus ça change
?); we failed to create enough chances and to get enough shots on target; Penny was naive conceding the second penalty. But taken as a whole, we played well.
I thought the ref favoured them overall, and as for the penalties... now that I've watched TV highlights, I think all three were marginal decisions. Yes, Miller was also holding Tavernier, but if a striker is held by a defender in the box, that should be a penalty, and had it been at the other end, I think it would have been. Some doubt over whether the first of theirs hit Penny's arm - was it shoulder to knee? And for their second, Morelos made a lot over the slightest of touches from behind, in a situation where he was going nowhere. I've seen them given, and not given, but how often do you see two in a row when there's room for doubt in both? So much for refs "evening things up".
Hey ho. You can't just write off the last six or seven minutes plus stoppage time. You have to compete to the end, and we didn't. I imagine Martin would have liked Ziggy back on after we equalised, and of course Candeias was involved in the move for their last goal. We were close, but not quite close enough, and while we could have got a point on another day, we probably deserved to lose narrowly, overall. But 4-1 was a travesty.