Writer: Ross Molyneux
Date:Tuesday May 1 2007
Cohesion? What the hell is that?
Another away day and another performance devoid of any semblance of order, structure, motivation or quality. England`s Michael Owen played so that should deflect all us mugs from actually picking up what happened out there at the Madjeski. Or so Glenn hopes.
United went into the game with their typical 'get two players back, lose two injured` policy as Owen and Shola came in whilst Butt and Parker missed out. In his infinite wisdom Captain Clueless decided to stick two fingers up to the supporters and name Dyer as captain, a blatant insult to every fan that follows Newcastle, and play Sibierski in 'the hole`.
The actual hole was a massive on left every time our pin heeded captain decided to go walk about from whatever role he was supposed to be playing. At the back Bramble kept his place after a strong display against Chelsea and reverted back to type, causing a laughing stock by turning in a stereotypical 'Titus Bramble` performance at the back.
The game started pretty well for the lads, with Emre crossing for Owen to just fail to connect, before Owen lashed in whilst off-side. Reading then got the game by the scruff of the neck and started playing, leaving our midfield hopefully outnumbered and outfought. We had a fair amount of possession, no shortage of corners and some nice tippy-tappy football but, in time old fashion, the seasoned NUFC watcher could quickly see the outcome of this one. Bramble was launching shots back at Harper in goal to deal with whilst Emre`s left peg got more and more wayward as the game went on.
By the time Kitson leathered home a volley in the opening five minutes of the second half we were dead on the ropes. Sibierski looked to break his arm and was replaced by Shola, as any last bit of organisation was lost. Reading had a couple of chances, we did too, squandered by Martins and Shola. Owen played the full game and got his fitness up for the Brazil friendly and Estonia away game in June, under the watchful gaze of Terry Venables. Emre got injured again. All in all - sh*te.
So it looks like we`re going to break our 'worst` totals for away games, overall points and generally performances in the Premier League since we came back up in 1993. Today was a microcosm of our football club, as we looked a rabble from start to finish. Thousands of fans made the journey to the Madjeski and got the p*ss taken out of them again whilst players like Dyer picked up £80k for strolling around like park footballers. The players were already on their summer holidays in all fairness.
Roeder on the other hand, according to his own press machine, is never on holiday - always working around the clock, whether on new signings or other tactics. To be honest, after the 'inspiration` he served up today, I`ve got the feeling he might be going on a slightly longer term holiday from this summer. His motivational skills are already under question but today his organisational ones went the same way. No-one knew what they were doing and I doubt they cared to be honest. His choice of Dyer as captain certainly took my breath away as completely ignorant. This was the same player who picked the armband up like a soiled nappy and chucked it on the ground three years ago. He should have been shot out of the club back then. Lets hope the Spurs rumours have some truth.
Rumours also abound about Roeder being a dead man walking. Given his patronising demeanour recently I can`t say I`d be sad to see him go. Allardyce will again be linked following this. At the current time, after watching the fare last night, I`m of the horrible realisation that maybe his organisational skill and ability to structure a team might not be such a bad idea.
What a sobering thought.
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Date:Tuesday May 1 2007
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