Andy Munro witnesses Blues surprising 3-0 defeat at home to Barnsley.
Sometimes the only consolation in a hammering is that it’s both time to take stock and also do a reality check. Only a Blues fan would have seen this humbling coming as most of us know that our position flatters to deceive. We also know that unless Gary Rowett turns into Pep Guardiola, our rightful and final position will be around ninth or tenth, which in fairness still a credit to the manager.
The truth is that with the added burden of Clayton D doing his best impression of a present day Ronnie Rosenthal, we were second best in everything from keeping possession to winning the second ball. And by the way this includes a muted Tilton Road, who were easily and embarrasingly outsung by a smattering of Barnsley diehards.
Blues were poor in almost all departments with, up front, the normal aerial dominance of Jutkiewicz absent and Donaldson equally ineffective. Both, incidentally, played like two separate target men, with little or no interplay. Their immobility was compounded by playing only one winger to deliver crosses and a midfield where Tesche playing like he had had one too many bratwurst at the German Market. Him and Kleftenbeld were that bad that even a Gleeson option seemed an attractive proposition.
I did though felt a but sorry for a beleaguered back four, although the full backs were chalk and cheese. Grounds forward forays ended with a stream of lamentably poor crosses while young Josh Cogley showed commendable composure and grittiness with his excellent crossing the icing on the cake. The centre backs struggled, with Morrison arguably having his worst game since being at the club. Shotton was marginally better but it could have been even worse if it hadn’t been for a couple more of Kuczak’s wonder saves.
In fairness, we haven’t lost a lot of ground but that’s academic given our displays of late. Who’s to blame? While I’m not a Rowett basher, my view is that when a technically superior team is outfought and outrun, the reason is poor motivation/poor fitness levels and that has to be put at the door of Der Management.