Jukebox Plays As Boro Hit Bum Note

JUKEBOX played but Boro hit a bum note. The fat lady was clearing her throat and doing scales long before the new boy – squeezed through a loophole on an emergency loan while Boro finalise the real deal – made his entrance in the second half.


Boro were taken apart in the first half as well drilled Burnley carved through a pedestrian, disjointed midfield with some rapid unchallenged counter-attacks. The engine room looking fragile and frightenly short of pace, width or creativity without its two main men and at one point midway through the half Boro fans were watching through their fingers as the visitors passed their way through with embarrassing ease. The gaffer was forced at one point to summon the senior players one by one to the touchline for a roasting.
The second half was marginally better, although that was as much because Burnley sat back to defend in depth as anything that Boro were doing. They had far more possession but did very little with it. Boro’s first real shot on target came two minutes from time as Tony McMahon blasted a close range angled effort straight at the keeper.
It was, to sum up the concourse chuntering consensus, absolutely bloody awful. Rubbish. It was the worst home display this season and possibly the worst under Mowbray. Yes, it was only the second defeat in 22 games and just short of a full year and yes we remain well placed and no-one should forget that, but it was an alarming performance as a muted and meek team slumped to back-to-back defeats for the first time since last February.
Hot on the heels of the demolition at Blackpool and the stodgy draw with Peterborough it certainly represents the worst run of results and perfromances in 12 months: one point from nine, one goal in three games, six conceded by what was until the turn of the year the best defence in the Championship, and since Bailey limped off at half-time against Posh, a team lacking solidity, shape or self-belief.
If the recent run has shown us anything it is the importance of linchpin Bailey. And that, whatever else he is, or isn’t, Kevin Thomson can not fill that role. The most generous thing you can say is that he remains ring rusty after (another) long spell sidelined by injury – but now, with key men missing, is exactly when he is required to step up and deliver. He hasn’t and whatever the mitigation, the critics are gathering. He won’t get many more chances before the mumbles become outright opposition as he slides into the role of boo-boy elect. Which will at least take some of the heat off Justin Hoyte and Jason Steele.
The defeat has also rammed home the lack of firepower. Against both Peterborough and Shrewsbury Boro created about 20 chances yet only brought three or four saves and could only manage a single goal. Blackpool created about six good chances and scored three. Burnley created maybe four and scored twice.
In the past two homes games Scott McDonald has had the ball played into his feet by Hoyte, unmarked six feet out at the far post – and faiiled to connect. He can’t complain about a lack of service. There’s a cypher for blunt Boro’s problem. They have squandered chances but got away with it because of a solid defence that eeked out 1-0 wins despite the poor conversion rate. Without Bailey (and to a lesser extent Robson) to add a layer of protection that rearguard looks far more vulnerable. We must start scoring again.
Lukas Jutkiewisc has been brought in to help address that problem and offer a different dimension. He is physical, direct and has an aerial presence. He can give defenders a problem that McDonald and Emnes can’t. And we put plenty of balls into the box so there is a supply line there to exploit. He is a desperately needed Plan B.
More later…..

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39 thoughts on “Jukebox Plays As Boro Hit Bum Note

  1. Burnley’s victory was as comfortable as our’s at Turf Moor earlier in the season. Struggling to think of anything positive about today’s efforts. It was as bad as it has been under Mogga, and the worst we have been in a while, but the signs have been there.
    Are the opposition rumbling us and are now ready for our counter attack style the second time we play them?
    As for jukebox, he needs service. We need pace and width, if we don’t bring those dimensions to the team he will struggle to score

  2. We are on the crest of a slump, but at least we are still in a good league position.
    This is a very competitive league and we will lose at home again this season. The aim must be to stay in the playoff positions and take our chance at the end of the season.

  3. To sum up, we were horrendous! It shows that we are missing Robson and Bailey.
    Have not heard if Coyne was injured as yet but if he was not I do not know why Ripley was playing…The second goal should have been saved.
    The only Boro player on the pitch who I thought played well was Faris Haroun who ran his heart out, Willliams probably played his worst game that I have seen him in a boro shirt and it showed that Emnes (despite 11 goals) is not a striker!
    We have done very well this season but now is the time to dig deep if we want to see the
    play-offs!!!
    UTB!

  4. One point out of the last nine, one goal scored in the last three, six goals conceded, and our engine room broken, speaks volumes of the strength of the squad. By all accounts we were taken apart by Burnley and it could have been more. Mogga, how are you going to fix this mate…….

  5. Despite the poor run, we’re still well placed and that is really what matters. It would have been great if we had maintained form whilst those around suffered their slumps but we didn’t. We got away with it just as we have got away with it on the pitch a few times this season. Overall Mogga has done well with the cards dealt to him and have to applaud him for that.
    What is a worry is that, again, the issues around ticket sales have surfaced. The sheer lack of ability and professionalism is simply not acceptable. I have had a few run-ins with the system and the people in it. Whoever is in charge should be ashamed as they are not doing the job to anything approaching an acceptable level.
    Amongst a few other things, getting backsides committed to seats is an important building block for the future and if we can not treat our existing season ticket holders properly then we will not grow the crowd.
    Score card – Mogga 9.5/10, Players 8.5/10, Administration 1/10 (and the one is for coming to work but not actually achieving anything).

  6. Fair to say Boro’s worst performance of the season even eclipsing Forest away in my opinion.
    It was just a disjointed and awful performance man for man from the kick off…..very hard to explain and hopefully a one off. We need to ‘turn-up’ and beat Coventry next they are bottom for a reason and no excuses (No Jukebox though due to gentleman’s agreement,eh?)
    The worrying thing is that its not a one off we seem to have started the new year very sluggish and ‘tired’ looking devoid of movement and looking very one paced…. slow!! We might as well give Bailey player of the season now as he is the new George Boateng…simply irreplaceable in the centre of the park and such a vital cog in the way Boro set up and play.
    My biggest worry is how the players who have come in have not taken there chances…Smallwood, Thomson, Martin, Arca just simply not done it and in a already small squad that’s a very big worry. We have been lucky with injuries this season and that why we are where we are. The last few weeks has shown what i think most of know that we are wafer thin in reserve. Just think if Joe Bennett gets crocked? We do not have another left back at the club.
    I agree Thomson just has not done it. I simply have never seen what he brings to the team on the very rare occasion he has played ,what does he bring?? He cannot beat a player or tackle or play a ‘killer pass’ he simply slows the game down and plays 5 yard square balls. I also expect he is on good money?
    A quick word on the ‘Jukebox’. I thought he did well on his brief cameo. He won more balls in the air in 30mins than we have won all season and clearly will pose a threat. The only worry is do we have enough quality in wide positions to give him service? Are we also looking for wingers? I hope so as not only can they provide the ‘Juke’ with crosses but can get past the last man and unlock flat back fours.
    Its not all dome and gloom and we have only been beat twice in 22 and are still five points clear of seventh. We must improve and get key players back asap starting at Coventry on Saturday. I am a bit gutted about Jukebox not playing but i can see why. I heard Mogga on the radio last night saying that Coventry were trying to drag out the deal until after next weeks game…very clever ha.
    UTB!!! (Up the Bailey:-)

  7. A terrible result and as you, AV said above our performances for the past three games haven’t been good.
    You said that a pedestrian, disjointed midfield left with some rapid unchallenged counter-attacks. The engine room looking fragile and frightenly short of creativity without its two main men.
    This looks a bit Strachan type, isn’t it?
    But hang on, Arca was our best player last season, Thommo and Smallwood bossed the midfield when Boro took four (4!) wins in a trot in April and May last year.
    So please don’t panic just yet. We need to keep playing Thommo and luckily we have Bazza back next game. An Haroun should be good enough for this level.
    So at Coventry we need Arca, Thommo, Robson and Haroun – or possibly Zemmama – in midfield. Perhaps we are not strong on the left side (remember Taylor there?). But now when we have finally landed Jutkiewicz I think we will still manage OK in the Championship. The #mogganaut is not broken overnight.
    Up the Boro!

  8. I am working on the basis the match was lost in the ether with sundry posts so it never happened so I am not talking about it.
    Percypie
    The answer to your conundrum is on the previous blog. I hope my post brings closure and ends the anguish.

  9. My first trip to the Boro in a few months due to working abroad.
    I will resist the temptation to pick the side to pieces on the evidence of one viewing every other month. However, what I saw yesterday frightened me.
    Plan B? we need more than that.

  10. As an exile, I get to watch far more away games than homes. Burnley was my first visit of the season to the Riverside. Chose well didn’t I?
    This has the feel of roosting chickens. As I’ve been saying, our record shows we have a good defence. But that’s different from having good defenders – our record is achieved by quantity as much as quality. Without the defensive MF screening of Bailey and Robson, we’re vulnerable and yesterday that was cruelly exposed.
    Everybody has recognised for over a year that we’re pedestrian in MF. We lack pace, width, incision and creativity. It is to Mogga’s huge credit – and the players’ – that he has masked this weakness and achieved what he has. He has worked the trick of getting a lot out of a little.
    With the defence overcome yesterday, there was abundant evidence of just how mediocre our MF is. We were embarassed by a team that were decent but far from exceptional. Boro made them look top class.
    Our goal record is testimony to our lack of attacking prowess. Even at Championship level, there is no evidence that Emnes or McDonald are capable of being goal-every-three-games stikers.The jury is still out on Jukebox but his record is not prolific.
    So: toothless attack, pedestrian MF, vulnerable defence – not good is it? It brings home just how well this team has done this season. Even more, it brings home the exceptional management of TM because I have no doubt that he has made this team’s total to be very much greater than the sum of its parts.

  11. Talk about after the Lord Mayors show. Long queues for the FA Cup tickets, but only 17 thousand for the game. Disappointing, or to be expected considering our home form, especially as the new boy was going to play at some stage.
    I think reality, even for TM, should now have kicked in. We do not have the squad good enough for one of the two top spots as some people have been shouting. At best I think 5th or 6th,( Birmingham are coming along nicely now that Europe is finished ) if the new boy starts scoring.
    The defence is not as good as they believe, meaning Mr Bates and Mr Williams. The former I would sell, if we got an offer, however I think he will just see out his contract and leave for nothing in the summer, when Williams will be sold also.
    Another couple of signings or loans would also help, but for that we would have to sell I guess.
    The biggest problem of course has been the increased expectations.

  12. Like our slow, dreary, predictable, side to side so called build up play against Shrewsbury the omens and warnings were there.
    For some reason nobody at Boro thought it neccesary to up the ante or become more adventurous for this one. The performance was a lot worse than the result, if you can picture Parmo Tarmo’s last outing and then put 10 of them out there (Rhys excluded) then that about summed it up.
    Their first goal was a slo-mo repeat of Turf Moor last season, the second (and the one that killed of belief in the team and the crowd) was just plain embarrasing. I don’t blame Ripley for either of them, both were from shots outside the box and not a single red Shirt anywhere near the goalscorer on both occasions.
    Of great and cynical concern is how we can bring in an “Emnergency loan” striker but not a keeper (or midfielder for that matter). Curtis Main was getting stripped for action last week but McDonald had to play in pain this week apparently yet we had “loan Lukas” on the bench. Excuse me if I’m confused.
    To go further I don’t believe that Danny, Danny Coyne was injured during the week and if he was (again don’t subscribe to that one at all) then what sort of thinking was behind throwing Rippers jnr. into a massive Championship game like that (surely a loan keeper was more urgent than Lukas arriving one game early)?
    Set piece defending was again a shambles and our only shot on target was when Macca came on and showed some pride. For an away keeper to have one save to make in a home game in 90 minutes was worse than Stricken and Scapegoat put together.
    Our throw ins were painfully embarrasingly slow with obviously no tactic or thought given to them, we were treated to yet another farcical free kick conundrum. I started counting how many side pases and backwards passes we made compared to forward passes to try and get a ratio of some sort but I just gave up in the end. I was using my right hand for forwards and my left hand for side to side but I ended up losing count when I had to employ both hands for the side to side passes.
    The transformation in a little over 12 months has been been amazing under Mogga but I’m now worried I’m starting to see the early shoots of eccentric spells that both Baggies and Celtic fans warned me to expect.
    A Celtic mate emailed me this after I was telling him about how bad things had been in the last three games, ‘Maybe it isn’t a league for trying to force the game and be expansive – maybe it is a league for playing defensive, negative football and having quality up front to counter-attack.’ Apparently these were Mogga’s comments after he left Parkhead.
    Getting beat is part and parcel of football, we have to accept good days and bad days but when changes are forced on a manager through “injuries” and suspensions then tactics need to be addressed to ensure you play to your strengths and negating your weaknesses. I would say having a non descript midfield and a rookie keeper was cause for playing defensive, negative football and having quality up front to counter-attack thereby cutting out the areas of the pitch were your opponents can exploit you.
    Hopefully with Robbo back and Danny, Danny Coyne recovered (are Tranmere due a payout dependent upon league appearances?) we can go back to basics against Coventry next week and get things back on track. Assuming that is that we pick players up at set pieces and we pass forward (and with gusto) as eloquently as we pass from side to side and backwards.

  13. For me this is the most disappointing result since Mogga arrived.
    I think AV is right about the two missing midfielders, although from what I have seen I would say Robson is our key ingredient for success. Without him we lack leadership, organisation and his sheer power and drive.
    The result isn’t a disaster but I hope things can be put right soon. I am still not happy about the goalkeeper situation and would have preferred one before bringing in the new striker, all good teams need a solid base and I’m afraid Steele doesn’t fill me with confidence…..

  14. Very very poor yesterday and glaringly obvious we are not the same team without Robson and most of all Bailey. I dont how many times we have said to each other at a game “i dont know how we’ll cope if Bailey ever gets injured” Well now we know we can’t.
    Williams should have been moved into midfield and McManus in defence,its obvious Mowbray doesn’t rate him but he’s never done anything particularly bad when hes played and at least he has height.
    Thompson has been here for 18 months now hardly ever been fit, never looked anything special and Mowbray’s loyalty to him and playing him is at the expense of the team and results. We cant wait for him to play half a dozen games to get his fitness levels up especially as hes more likely to pick up “another” niggling injury.
    Joe Bennett is a big disappointment too. Where has the player gone who would take on defenders and beat them? Supporters club young player of the season last year!! Hes been terrible,never goes past anyone,never makes a tackle and cannot cross a ball at all. I’m sure hes only playing because we dont have another left back at the club
    We desperately need another keeper too, Steele is a dodgy number 1 keeper but theres no back up, 20 mins for Coyne last week and now he’s injured, or Ripley who’s only 18, got no height or physical presence and who’s probabally got no confidence after that horrible howler yesterday.
    Lets hope Juke gets the service to score,because no one else looks like doing so. McDonald cant moan, he’s had the ball put through to him in great positions and he’s failed miserably and even though Emnes had an early season purple patch he no longer looks like hitting the back of the net either.
    Having had a better than expected first half of the season I hope now we aren’t going to fade away to our expected pre season position in mid table

  15. The Tippy-Tappy Twins reborn. This time it’s Arca and Thomo.
    If you play the two together (and there’s doubt about whether either are worth a place on their own) it’s a misery compounded and – like the few previous times it’s been tried – guarantees pedestrian play, passing the ball sideways and backwards and getting caught in midfield and on the break.
    There were other set outs and selections from the reduced resources available that could have done a job.
    And what the heck is going on with Jutkiewicz? Mogga makes a ‘gentlemen’s agreement’ with Andy Thorn to get an emergency loan to get the lad available yesterday which means he can’t play at Coventry next week and then leaves him on the bench until ten minutes into the second half when ‘toothless’ was a compliment to our front line – even allowing for them having to rely for ‘supply’ on the NNTTTT.
    Too clever by half, Mogga.

  16. A very good summing up of a very poor day for Boro fans.
    I tried to put some perspective into the Thomson situation with comments on this site – but have to admit that yesterday was even worse than the mediocrity we’ve become so accustomed to from him. The lad knows he’s got something to prove – his comments to the press state that much – but, alas, he didn’t grasp it with even a little fingernail, let alone both hands yesterday.
    Here’s to hoping he steps up his efforts – but will that be enough? Have his injuries taken their course and slowed to a snails pace the progress of a player who, at times in Ibrox, looked a good talent? The answer to that can in no uncertain terms never be ‘No’…
    Bailey is the backbone of our side. That much is obvious. But if that is the entire case, in reality, we’re not ready for promotion. You cannot go to the Premier League being largely dependent on one individual – no matter how good that individual is.
    I remember a few years back Steve Baker marking Steve McManaman out of a game at Anfield – had him in his pocket for the full 90 minutes. One of the best performances I have ever seen in a Boro shirt. Maybe we can show a little extra faith in our already talent-laden academy and consider the likes of Pilatos or Dolan fo the holding midfield role?
    One thing for sure is that they couldn’t do much worse than our midfield vs. Burnley…

  17. Very alarming performance, which just confirmed the Navi posse’s original verdict – that the squad remains woefully short of talent, and without one or two key players (in this case Robson and Bailey) we are a very ordinary team.
    Without investment we will limp along when injuries come along, and may even miss the play-off gravey boat. My friend Chris (from Beverley) had a terrible day, (maybe he will enlighten fellow bloggers!) so this result perfectly fit with his disjointed day.
    Can we invest and improve? Only Mogga and Gibbo know.

  18. I think Robson is not missed to a lesser extent at all. Look at the stats when he doesn’t play. Mogga pits him up against the oppositions strongest winger usually and I reckon we’ll be back to winning ways at cov. An offer of £2m for McDonald has to be accepted. Mogga must be tired of defending him

  19. AV, is it true Jutkiewisc will not play against Coventry next week or deal off? Is that why loan deal?
    **AV writes: No, the deal is complex because Coventry have big cash problems and want as much cash as possible up front and Boro aren’t flush so don’t want to pay more than they have to now. The wrangling held the deal up beyond the Friday 5pm registration deadline for permanent transfers.
    Only way for himto be eligible to play v Burnley was a loan deal. At the time it looked like McDonald wouldn’t make it so in agreeing the loan Coventry did us a favour. We have done them one in return with the gentleman’s agreement.

  20. FOCUS WHAT FOCUS? The Town the Team even you A.V.
    Getting beat off the Makems and beat we will get (sure). For what? Is it really worth throw our season away? Sunderland are a Premier form team busting to fulfill their dreams and managers wants and expectations
    Better we conceded the tie than to go throwing precious points away like we did as if they do not mater at all. Losing our focus now is not good not good at all.
    This is one hell of a tough division to get out of. We need focus each and every week. Come on Boro pick it up again

  21. Dont want to take away what Mogga and his staff have achieved but non of Mogga’s signings have really helped the team. Non are starters and thats a worry. I you were another owner you;d have a real concern
    Zemmama
    Haas
    Ogbeche
    Main
    Haroun (ok but not a difference maker)
    Nimley
    Martin

  22. AV, you say the loan deal was rushed through as McDonald looked as though he wouldn’t be able to play. Did we really have nobody who could have filled in? Are we really that thin on the ground?
    We have too many players who are surplus to requirements, and unfortunately they were brought to the club and have failed. Player recruitment is leaving a lot to be desired. Who scouts these purchases?
    **AV writes: Mogga is starting to rebuild his own scouting network. Strachan pretty much scrapped it preferring to go off his own pool of players he knew. Before that Southgate worked with an inherited scouting sytem that seemed to be fixated on recommending players that Boro increasingly couldn’t afford.

  23. Correct me if I am wrong on this one.. I sit in the North Stand just behind the goal. For the last month (at least) I have been watching the team warm up and I have seen Steele, Pears, Coyne and another keeper (being used for ‘striker’ practice) out there but no sign of Ripley.
    I actually thought this other keeper (please tell me his name!!!!) was very good but if we rate Ripley so highly where was he???
    **AV writes: Probably playing for the Academy side. They play most Saturdays.

  24. Very disapointing when all around us got points .Would like to reply on a few coments earlier.
    Totally agree with Never Give Up – Williams needs to push into midfield while Bailey is out, at least for the home games, with big Mick into the back four.
    With regards Moggas signings. At the beginning of the season it was fair to say that the starting eleven when all fit they could give anybody a game in this league.
    So I would say most of his signings have been for back up. Haroun has looked good in most of what I have seen.
    I dont expect the Juke to be a big scorer for us more a supplier as we currently have our wide men one on loan the other looking for a new club.
    As for the keeper situation I have long said this could be the biggest mistake of the season not keeping Smith or extending the loan of Ikeme as we are now sitting with a youngster in goal which will do his confidence no good.
    All in all happy we have got a big man up front, need another keeper and a wide man. Thommo I am afraid needs game time but not at the expense of our midfield. Should go out on emergency loan for a month get some match practice and come back for the run in.
    There all our problems solved. Can now book a Wembly ticket as I will get one before the regulars, another point mentioned earlier.

  25. I wonder what Southampton fans thought when they lost at home to Bristol City and went through a bad run of results?
    We all realise, I think, how crucial Bailey and Robbo are to the team, even if the squad was bigger would that make a difference? I dont think its possible to have a squad where players of comparable quality sit on the side lines week after week waiting for a player to be injured in order to get a game.
    Losing a couple of key players through injury/suspension is a given at some point in the season as is a bad run of results. Despite the bad run we’re still only five points off the top and well established in the play off zone.
    Its important that this run of poor results is halted and reversed but its not a crisis yet. We’ve known all season that we were short of a goal scorer/goals, hopefully we’ve just solved that problem to a degree at least.

  26. Putting Smallwood, Thommo and Arca in to a midfield four with AN Other is unlikely to give you any forward impetus. Read John’s BoroBanter piece, sums it up nicely.
    Smallwood to hold and disrupt, Thommo to do the passsing. Add in a couple of people who can play with tempo, attack and have a pop. Then a couple up top.
    Or go 3-5-2 as we eventually did with wing backs to provide the get up and go, Haroon to get forward from the midfield three. Smallwood plus one of Thommo or Arca.
    Robbo will have been on a diet of raw meat so expect a 3-5-2 at Coventry.
    Easy to blame the keeper when the rest are shocking and can spread the blame between them.

  27. It all looks black after a defeat (and a performance) as bad as that, but have a little patience lads.
    Let’s face facts – we have massively over-achieved in the first part of the season. A solid defence, plus nicking some goals on the counter-attack, particularly away from home, has propelled us up the league and let us stay there. If a draw and 2 defeats in a row is our worst run of the season so far, then it can’t be that bad.
    Let’s put things in perspective. A few weeks ago Southampton and West Ham streaked eight points clear of us, many were saying how they were nailed on for the two automatic places. Some sage heads pointed out glaring weaknesses, West Ham’s dodgy home form, Southampton’s dodgy away form, and marked their words that they would stumble. They did, and at one point the gap decreased to 2 points.
    Subsequently, we are on our mini slump and yet the gap is… five points! Not 15 points, not a completely unattainable figure – just five points.
    A couple of key acquisitions (Please please please re-sign Ikeme or Paul Smith!!!) and we should be ready and stronger for the second half of the season. If things continue as they are then Boro v Southampton on 21st April – the penultimate game of the season – has promotion decider written all over it.
    I’m not panicking. Yet.

  28. Smoggy in exile –
    I believe I read somewhere that Ikeme is out for the season – or the best part of it – with an injury. Don’t know about Paul Smith.
    Never give up on boro –
    Whatever the issues with inexperience and yet to develop ‘presence’ as regards Connor Ripley, the issue isn’t physical size. As Ian Gill will confirm, I’m a lot of space to be a waste of – vertically, as well as in circumference. I’ve stood next to the lad on quite a few occasions and he dwarfs my six-foot-and-a-bit (I think he’s currently 6′ 4″ and still growing) and, for a professional athlete, he’s built like the proverbial brick thingy.
    I’ve often wondered ‘whither Big Mick’ recently in my Boro Banter pieces when he hasn’t appeared on benches that often with no explanation – even for face-saving – about ‘niggles’ or ‘viruses’.
    Interesting, then, to see today’s Gazette article about more transfers in label the Scots stopper (along with Parmo Tarmo) as a ‘fringe player that could be offloaded’ to generate headroom for Mogga, constrained only by the daft wages they’re both on. Has anyone told Big Mick or is he drawing his own conclusions?

  29. Smoggy in exile –
    To a large extent I agree with you but I dont think we have massively overachieved.
    It is by and large the same group of players who played so well at the end of last season. That form has carried over because they are still here and fit and available.
    I hoped for better than last year and because Mogga raised the bar that meant really a play off place was a real possibility. And that is where we are.
    The loss of a couple of players happens to everyone – Mancini is looking glum with a few absentees and look at the squad at his disposal. Wenger is whinging and even the press talk about ManU at one point having nine out and it is a crisis.
    What we have to avoid is the avoidable. As has been mentioned in Vic’s blog and sundry posts the midfield make up was slow when it was selected and lived down to expectations.
    I am not going to blame the players because they are what they are. I never criticise Hoyte when he plays left back because it isnt his fault.
    Robbo should be back for Coventry and lets hope Bailey will be back sooner than later. A decent result at Coventry would do the world of good.

  30. GT –
    Just speaking about the transfer out of the list you mention:
    Zemmama – 200k
    Haas – free punt
    Ogbeche – free punt
    Main – free kid
    Haroun (ok but not a difference maker) free punt
    Nimley loan punt
    Martin free punt
    Some guys were brought in as a gamble – Haas, no fee no problem
    Main – isnt a first team candidate
    Nimely – was pure short termism, hopefully useful youth loan from the prem.
    Martin was injured all last year and was brought in as a cheap punt (he has scored some beauties!)
    Ogbeche -has done the business when he started, again free!
    The most disappointing is Zemmama – cos he has not stayed fit and actually cost something! At a 200k expenditure (by my maths) it is not bad!
    We spent £14m on one striker who got swapped with his donkey clone, twin brother after 8 games (the real one played against Man U!). And £6m on another who was just a donkey who would eat his brother (you know who you are fat boy).
    Just imagine what Mogga is going to do with some real bucks to spend when we have some again!!
    COB!

  31. I think Mogga will get it right with time (look how far we have come in 12 months). Jutkiewicz will be a good signing as of all the centre forwards we have played against in the Championship he has displayed the best first touch.
    The only mistake I think Mogga has made so far is not keeping Carl Ikeme either on loan till the end of the season or on a permanent . It would be good to see points won per game played by goalkeeper during Mogga’s tenure so far. If Ikeme was still between our sticks I think we would be in an automatic promotion spot if not top by now. That decision could be the difference between Premier League and Championship football next year.
    If there is wheeling and dealing to be done bring back Carl please Mogga! Failing that, Smith did a good job.

  32. My mate Kev B has prompted me to enlighten you all on my bad day last Saturday.
    Arrives at my Dad’s from Beverley, other half calls to say we have sprung a leak in the Bathroom, which has caused a fair bit of damage. Other half not happy as she has to stay at home to wait for the emergency plumber, hence, missing a 3-0 win at Old Trafford. Boro lose 2-0 – not happy, glum journey home.
    Arrive home to find a large tax bill waiting for me.
    I have had better days!
    UTB

  33. Percypie –
    I cant see the issue, you were right about us winning 2-0 with two players sent off and Downing scored. It was just a few years out and the wrong team. A valiant effort from all those years ago.
    A clear case of half empty.

  34. Burnley beat West Ham away and drew with Southampton away as well. They’re no mugs and are the leagues’ form team.
    We’ve been poor since the start of December but have put enough points together to somewhat hide that and we’re still handily placed and ahead of schedule.
    I’m not ready to write Thomson off. Once he gets up to speed (injuries allowing) I think he’ll be a real asset for us. He’s a classy footballer but unfortunately he’s having to do his tuning up in the first team without our best players around him. If he’s had an unbroken run in the side this time next month then I think he’ll be much improved.
    In an interview last week Mowbray mentioned the possibility of playing two deep-lying central midfielders and I wonder, especially with the more physical Jukebox brought in, whether this is his plan – a 4231 with Bailey and Thomson deep, Emnes and A.N.Other wide and Robson driving forward behind Jukebox.
    On paper, it looks good to me but we’ll need a pacy winger and, more importantly, more of our first team available.
    What has happened to Jonathan Franks? He looked like being on the cusp of breaking through last year and whilst he’ still green he has the raw pace that our midfield is crying out for. It seems a long time since Mowbray compared him to Messi!

  35. This mini slump has been coming for a while. Although we got good results last month some were undeserved and we have been depending on lady luck for a while now and the loss of NB and BR has been massive.
    The signing of Juky should give us a lift but we badly need someone capable of good crosses as our wing backs dont seem capable. If Mogga cant get a good wide man in quick how about giving Halliday a go? Hes’ been at the club a long while now and surely must be given a chance. He cant’ be any worse than the likes of Arca etc. and might even get us the odd goal which the likes of Arca etc can’t do.

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