New boss…but more misery at Meadow Lane

Three goals conceded yet again? Tick.

Players giving a ten yard pass straight to the opposition time and again? Tick.

Absolute shambles? Tick.

Full house.

As soon as the line-up came out at 2, the worrying started. I don’t want to blame Norm but it was so evident that there was no balance, why Dennis was on the left first half God only knows. I’ve never seen Alessandra play in a midfield 3. Hawkridge isn’t and never will be a right back, and yet he wasn’t even the worst player.

We are just second to everything over and over again. Teams know that if they get stuck in, we’ll crumble. Today was another damning indictment of Kevin Nolan’s recruitment and strategy this summer because nobody looks like they know what they’re doing or where they’re supposed to be doing it. Sad, more than anything.

I could go through pretty much every player and say why they’ve been abysmal both today and so far this season. Fitzsimons doesn’t look like a professional goalie. Hewitt and Brisley’s defending, positional awareness and distribution is laughable. Jones has completely lost his head; the red card was full deserved even though their man should have been booked too. Husin’s free kicks when he came on…I don’t know how to describe.

There’s no bite in the middle, Vaughan needs someone next to him who’s going to be nasty and get amongst the other team because without that he’s a passenger that occasionally turns and passes backwards. Milsom wasn’t bad but he’s still not the answer. Is Karl Henry still a free agent?

At least Stead and Kellett were decent when they came on. You can never question Stead’s effort regardless of his ability now, which can’t be said for some of the others in all honesty. Kellett needs to play in that CAM role, nowhere else.

I can only think of a few other positives for the future:

  • New manager might be able to perform a Houdini and be our own miracle worker named Harry. Time will tell.
  • We have other defenders to come in include Tootle, Duffy, Hall, Davies, Oxlade Chamberlain and Bird.
    • Hopefully it means we won’t see Hawkridge at RB again, Hewitt and Brisley wont be putting the ball out of play every few minutes and Jones will start being a footballer again when he returns from suspension.
    • Kewell needs to make this, and the CM, his absolute priority before it’s too late.
  • We’ve scored a home goal.
  • There are 40 games still to play.

We’re in September so this is salvageable. But we don’t have long to turn this around because we risk putting ourselves completely adrift.

At this point, the word promotion isn’t even in the vocabulary; I’m more worried about what could happen if we don’t start picking up some wins. Exeter got hammered on Saturday by Lincoln so they’ll really be up for it next weekend – they won’t want to lose like that again.

Have mercy on us, Jonny Forte.

Jacob Gunton

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