Monday, December 24, 2007

Gateshead 1 Ashton United 1

Same old story, different match day. Similar to Wednesday night against Farsley Celtic, we started well and dominated the first half, taking the lead midway through the first half when Graeme Armstrong instinctively headed a Phil Cave cross into the net.
Gateshead passed the ball well for the first forty minutes, but once again massively lacked in the final 3rd of the pitch. Wayne Phillips playing in a floating free role behind the front two once again caused the opposition problems. They didn't like him running at them. However at times he held on to the ball slightly too long, not that there were many options available to give it to (without going backwards).
Gateshead really should've gone on to put Ashton out of sight in the second half. But once again we suffered big time Charlie headitis, with certain players not being able to battle when it starts getting tough.
Credit has to go to Ashton as they kept going and got their reward with 10 minutes to go. Aitken came for a cross and failed to deal with it, his punch fell to the edge of the area only to be dispatched into a partially unguarded net. It probably was a foul on Aitken but the truth is he should've done better. Aitken made up for it with a good save late on to save our blushes.
I've run out of answers with this current squad, they did it at the start of the season but I just can't see them getting back to that form. The wheels have well and truly started to come off, hard decisions need to be made now before we're out of sight.
Aitken 7
Did ok, 1 good save to stop them winning it. Possibly fouled for their equaliser, but still should've done better.
Baxter 7
Solid, with a few good crosses.
Cave 7
Not one of his better games, but a good cross for the goal. Both fullbacks had little protection.
Dudgeon 8
Solid performance, didn't put a foot wrong and dealt with all that needed to be.
Heed Army Blog Man of the Match.
Thompson 8
Looked good a centre half again.
Gate 6
A couple of good blocks, but went missing in a 3 man midfield.
McClen 6
Started well but once again faded out the game and was substituted.
Bowey 6.5
Huffed and puffed, had the ball in the net to be ruled off side. Lacked a final product and quality passing.
Phillips 7
Again looked dangerous, but with this new free role he seems to be overplaying it a little too much. I would say better deployed on the left touchline, but what's the point if he crosses it into the middle and there's no one there.
Southern 6
Not really at the races today after scoring a good goal on Wednesday night. Probably would be better deployed as a right winger?
Armstrong 6.5
Good instinctive finish with a header. However when given time on the ball he panics and invariably picks the wrong option.
Robson 6
Not at any stage this season have we utilised his speed by putting balls for him to run on to. Everything is into his feet, and strength is not his asset.
Harwood 6
Came on and didn't do much. A couple of runs on the wing.
Talbot 6.5
Solid enough, but a left back for left back substitution isn't gonna to set the World on fire  

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