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Boro vs Doncaster (A)

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Poor match, poor result, highlight of the day was the good atmosphere and meeting up with weasel, jamesp, bif, bib, dan and bib's mate (who should sign up to here definitely!) The abysmal weather had an awful effect on the match with every single aerial ball getting dragged miles away from its target and both teams infuriatingly kept trying to whack it long to no effect.


Best player on the pitch for boro was carayol. Made things happen every time he went forwards. The Chelsea lads both put in good performances. After shaky starts they both really grew into the game. Chalobah has a nice burst of pace about him and is far more forward thinking than whitehead, a lot better with the ball at his feet too. Omeruo just looks like a monster, rapid, strong, and puts in some crunching challenges. He looked more composed up against a tricky winger than varga has recently. For me they've both done enough to be in the match day squad for Blackburn.


I'll do some player ratings:


Given - 6.5. Made one or two decent stops. Collected corners and crossed very well. Kicking was awful, most likely due to the horrific conditions. Fumbled a save from a powerful shot which was hacked clear into safety.


Omeruo - 6.5. After a shaky start he grew into the game and looked solid at right back. Wasn't quite on the same wavelength as ledesma and they had an intense talk on the pitch just before the second half as they seemingly discussed tactics. Made one lad's day by chucking him the 'get well soon Rhys' top before the match, given did also.


Ayala - 7. Physical tank, missed one challenge and hurt himself on the process, but battled on. Did well to contain Chris Brown, the dirty misogynist (wait, wrong guy? Oops!)


Gibson - 7. See Ayala minus the injury bit. Punted the ball long a bit too much and a few poor touches, but the lads physical presence and his tackling ability is truly awesome.


Friend - 5.5. Omeruo in reverse. Started brightly, then after 20 minutes or so looked a bit suspect. Seemed a little too eager to impress and after some good runs he held onto the ball way too long. Faded as the game went on and struggled a little against a tricky winger. Not a bad game by any means, just okay.


Chalobah - 6.5. Improved as the game went on. Looks to be a tenacious, battling midfielder who is also decent going forwards. Will be very interesting to see how he does alongside leadbitter in future games. Set carayol clean through on goal for one of our only good chances.


Leadbitter - 7.5. Battled all game long. Went on a tremendous very un-leadbitter-like run where he went past their entire team going from our box to theirs almost as if there was no one there, but hesitated before shooting allowing their defender to put a cracking block in. One of the better performers.


Butterfield - 4.5. Poor. Started fairly brightly making good runs and moving the ball from winger to winger then just vanished and offered nothing. Passing was poor, elected to shoot when there were better options at one point. Didn't provide any service to any of our attacking players. Crying shame really, this was his big chance. If he is played in the next game he needs to make more of an impact. I like the guy, I just hope he can up his game to the desired level.


Ledesma - 6. Okay. Shot wastefully once or twice. Showed his class with a truly beautiful inch perfect ball onto main's 50 pence head which he could only put straight at the keeper. A few good passes and good to see him helping out omeruo just before the start of the second half.


Carayol - 8. Motm for me. Constantly beating players and striding into opposition territory at ease, looked class today. His delivery wasn't great, but what I did note was he seemed to be the only player on the pitch who figured that if he hit the ball in the air the wind would take t and as such he just drilled low crosses in. Had a great shot where he cut in of the wing and curled narrowly wide. Great to see him string a run of games together where he's shown he can consistently be a menace to our opponents.


Main - 4. Offered nothing, not even as energetic as he normally is. Highlights of his game were beating one or two players very rarely. Won no headers, provided no threat, wasted a terrific ledesma cross with a poor, weak header. The lad's an honest runner, but just not good enough right now. Desperately needs to be loaned out, wish he'd been loaned to Hartlepool.




Graham - 6. Didn't get much time on the ball. Held up play well and won a lot of headers. Had one chance on the turn from 25 or so yards which was drilled wide. Denied a stonewall penalty by one of the worst refs I've seen, granted the ref in the second half wasn't quite as bad as the ref in the first.


Whitehead - 5. Broke down play well. Booked for a very rash challenge. Not much else to say.


Kamara - NA. Cameo appearance at the end. Won his headers in the brief time he was on and beat a few players before fizzing a shot past the post. Hopefully fit enough to start over main next match. Heck, put konstantolopoworotoyoboholopoulopoulos upfront ahead of main!!


Both refs were terrible in my eyes. Any time one of our players breathed on a donny player it was perceived as a free kick. Wellens was only given a yellow for an aggressive, dangerous lunge on carayol which he only did as he thought leadbitter fouled him. Nasty spiteful challenge which would have been red on another day. Stonewall penalty denied in the second half for a two handed push in Graham's back. I was in disbelief. Don't think either ref would have blown if one of their players came out on the pitch with a sledgehammer.


Great atmosphere, thought we could have been louder, but there was nothing on the pitch to chant at. Donny fans were useless. About 10 of them just sang the same song for 90 minutes and received a lot of abuse from boro fans.


Was great to meet the lads off the forum, a truly nice bunch. Hope you all got home alright (and in dan's case didn't get stuck at donny station :p!)


Onwards and upwards and lets hope for a clean sheet and a win against Blackburn. Definitely needs to be changes in the forward areas. Kamara/graham to start and ledesma through the centre with big al on the right perhaps?



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From those highlights it looks like we were lucky to get a draw! Against a better team Brown's misses would have been converted. Its not worrying as such, but it certainly seems to be a step back in the wrong direction of Novembers good form.

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Even against Charlton and Wigan we performed poorly and were lucky with the 4 points we got from them. We need to up our performance level against Blackburn back to how we played against Burnley as if we keep playing how we have recently then the 3 points are there for the taking for the chicken botherers.

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From those highlights it looks like we were lucky to get a draw! Against a better team Brown's misses would have been converted. Its not worrying as such, but it certainly seems to be a step back in the wrong direction of Novembers good form.


Tbf those highlights do make Doncaster look like they were the better side, it was quite even, but i agree about that Brown miss, i couldnt believe how much height he got on it.

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