Blues’ poor home run continued on Saturday. Andy Munro watched.
We all knew that a bottom of the league club who hadn’t won away but had just appointed a new manager was a car crash waiting to happen for beleaguered Blues. Can it get any worse? Not really, because we’ve been at the bottom of the barrel for over a year so now we just expect it.
The side that was picked had, to be fair, a decent look to it with two notable exceptions. One was Robbo the snail and the other was a decision to play just one up front to accommodate the two youngsters against a big, physical Bolton side. Surely most managers would have played just one and used the other as an impact sub when the opposition were tiring.
We started off in half-decent fashion and Bolton should probably have been reduced to ten men when Koby Arthur was hauled down and denied a clear goalscoring opportunity. Maybe the men in black should add a black cap to their ensemble as they seem intent on sending us down to our doom. Cotterill, who otherwise had one of his quieter games, hit the bar with a superb free kick and then the inevitable happened.
The singularly unimpressive Grounds was tied up in knots and allowed the winger to get in a cross and force a corner. From the set piece, Bolton showed how it was done when Mills lost Robbo to bullet home a header. Mind you at 63, I’d fancy myself to lose Robbo. Unfortunately this singled a marked deterioration in Blues’ play as passes started to go badly astray and then Davies limped off to be replaced by the rumbustious but wasteful Reilly.
Second half saw the tiring Cotterill replaced along with Gleeson as Blues went for broke Barry Fry style. However,apart from the superb Demarai Gray,we huffed and puffed to no avail and ,in doing so left ourselves open at the back. Caddis sold Randolph short when he should have hit Row Z when under pressure. This resulted in Randolph receiving his marching orders and left our nemesis Brummie Craig Davies to put Bolton two up. In fact he horribly missed so, at least, he won’t be smirking his way around Small Heath next week.
Still, one-nil is a defeat and, as we slip nearer the trapdoor, one wonders how long Geordie boy can hang on. Either way, the Blues could be a half decent team but are drifting around like a ship without a rudder with the Blues coaching staff seemingly clueless.
For example, I can’t remember when I last saw a Blues fullback regularly overlap and part of that is because they’re too worried about exposing the rest of the defence. What has the mobile 6′ 2″ Grant Hall done to be consigned to the bench when he gives the defence a far more solid look? He also shouts and instructs when Robbo is usually gasping for air instead. As regards, Denny Johnstone…would I prefer to be on the bench at Celtic or the Blues? I think we all know the answer to that one!
Things have to change and strangely enough I think they will very soon, one way or another.