Things we sort of learned: Wolves (H)

Wolferhampton Wandered into our living room and availed themselves of three points without too much trouble. Were you there? Rich Jeffery was, and here’s what he thought of the whole evening at the football.

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Wolfs

They were good. Very good. Comfortably the best side at FCR this season. Skilful, pacy, strong and well drilled. They absolutely reek of automatic promotion. Heck they’ve even got Ry:Ben looking like a defender. All that said, and the scoreline and the olés apart - which are never pleasant to hear - we were in the game up until their second goal killed it off.

So for that reason and with the mitigation of us being tired and down to the bare bones in the squad, and with a derby win in the bank, I’m not going to be too harsh on us.

Bolton away to come then another international break. We need to rest, recuperate and go again. We’re still in touch with the play off spots but we need to find a way and a system to take the game to teams more effectively at home.

Heads you win.

If Marley Watkins’ header, from a pinpoint Maddison free-kick, had gone in rather than hit the post, it would have been us who could have sat deep and tried to break, rather than them. This is the only way we seem to be able to play, which is why our home form has been so disappointing. He should have scored it, a free header with pace on the ball. Rusty or not it was a bad miss.

Fine margins.

Shortly afterwards the wardrobe sized Boly rose pretty much unchallenged from a corner to plant his header in the top corner. This suited the visitors down to the ground as, despite their quality and pace, Wolves hadn’t really opened us up through their play. But with us pushing for an equaliser we were open to the counter and boy did they, often and with pace.

We coped reasonably well though a few last ditch tackles and blocks were required, so it was disappointing when we switched off again for their second when the ball was knocked back into the box leaving Bonatini unmarked to lash home.

Again avoidable, and we’ve slipped back into that sloppiness in the last few games.

Bigger boys came

Some of them very big. Boly & N'Diaye in particular were very imposing.

I always think that players that large should have to wear slippers to try and balance out their physical advantage. They could play as well though to be fair to them, it wasn’t all about their size.

Watching our lads bouncing off them reminded me a bit of like when you went to the school disco, and saw that Melanie Ronson (John Ruddy) was going out with Peter Tapman (Willy Boly) one of the school bullies, and there was nothing you could do about it apart from cry when you got home.

Er, that’s not based on still painful memories, OK?

Maddison

We are in danger of becoming too predictable, in that everything seems to come through Maddison.

He twisted and wriggled through a few times before having his shot blocked on each occasion, it just wasn’t happening tonight for him though again he looked our most potent threat.

Couple all that with our slow build up play and we’re fairly easy to defend against. We missed the directness and pace of Wildschut last night.

Maddison had nobody making runs ahead of him, though the packed Wolfs defence made things difficult for us. So we ended up going sideways or backwards all the time.

Plus the lad was kicked from pillar to post again, with any protection from the tiny referee man coming too late. I fear he’ll get knacked at some point with the ‘attention’ he gets.

Banter Flags

The atmosphere was dreadful tonight, it never got going and the pre-kick off OTBC was possibly the least enthusiastic I’ve ever *barely* heard.

It’s great having banter flags and clever new songs based on britpop anthems/disco hits and that, but until safe standing is introduced and those who wish to sing can all stand together it’s only ever going to be an occasionally decent atmosphere.

Mind you, a few goals and a home win would help greatly as well.

If FCR is our ‘living room’ then we’re currently allowing guests in without taking their shoes off. Not only that, they are putting their feet up on our coffee table, dropping crumbs all over the settee and loudly farting without even the slightest apology. This needs to stop.

Also, can we drop the Muscat stuff now please? Let it go lads, let it go.