Andy Munro spends an unappealing night at St Andrews.
As a Blues fan for over fifty years, I’ve seen some great matches and I’ve seen some dire ones and the first half of this ‘match’ (and I use that word loosely) was undoubtedly an Oscar winner in the latter category.
With Blues, you can normally tell in the opening minutes if we’re going to be on song and it was immediately obvious that we hadn’t any real appetite. We were hopeless in both senses of the word and just couldn’t cope with being closed down by a Leeds side playing like men possessed…mind you, who in the right mind would want to risk the wrath of Steve Evans whose profile quite frankly seems to neatly fit that of your typical Leeds supporter?
Probably only Shotton came out with any credit in the abysmal first 45 minutes and even the he looked less than aerially dominant given his height and stature. It was a comedy of errors that Shakespeare would have been proud of and culminated in David Davies defence splittin’ pass to the corner flag and Cotterill’s sliced clearance into the Tilton. With a sparse crowd, Leeds fans excepted, it was like being back in the days of Ken Wheldon – uninspiring football, regular defeats, and sparse crowds with a depressed home support.
Two goals were conceded to the talented Dallas but he was allowed the freedom of the park to put in his goal scoring shots. Gary Rowett is no Barry Fry and it took him sometime to make his subs but in fairness Blues played like a team possessed in the second period. Once Donaldson poked home Blues reply the screw was turned but too many chances went begging and none more sothan Fabrini’s agricultural swing at an open goal. In fact his appearance as substitute was a real cameo of his recent play; falling over theatrically at the slightest contact, showing sublime skills to weave his way into good positions then failing to do the simple thing.
The really noticeable difference was the introduction of Toral, who knitted things together superbly although yet again wide men were sacrificed and yet again Caddis was our most potent attacking down the flanks.
Donaldson netted what looked a perfectly good equaliser but that was ruled out. In fact, we got precious little joy from the officials and our comeback eventually petered out as inexorably did our play off charge.