Thrown to the lions

Andy Monro watches Blues lose at home to Brentford.

Throwing unfortunates to the lions was something the Romans were very fond of and Giafranco might as well have done the same to the Blues team, as they tried to play the sort of football that it soon became patently obvious that they were not even remotely equipped to do.

You can imagine that Dean Smith, a man of claret and blue persuasion, would have got his players well up for this game and told them to quickly close down and panic a Blues back four who would be trying to play like Inter Milan when between them ,they couldn’t trap a bag of cement. Whatever, he said certainly worked as, apart from the opening half hour, Brentford were faster and fitter by a country mile. Yet, in the opening period, Blues played some bright football and should have been a goal up when Che Adams was clean through only to steer the shot wastefully wide. Luckily Jutkiewicz was on hand to open the scoring with a delightful dink. At the time, this seemed justification for Zola’s brave move to play two wingers and virtually two strikers.

Unfortunately, the warning signs were there as Brentford carved us open almost at will and it was obvious that one goal was never going to be enough especially with Tesche still struggling. One can only be thankful that he was saved major embarrassment from another Man of the Match performance from David Davies. However being continually second to both the first and second balls, showing utter panic at the back when closed down and failure to put any real decent passes together meant there could only be one winner and that was never going to be an inept Blues.

It’s a good job Kuscak was on form both saving a penalty and making several excellent saves. Shame about his dreadful distribution but, more often than not this was partly caused by back passes from hell. The Blues full backs gave their opposition wingers the freedom of the park which was not helped by tracking back that was in name only from the Blues wingers. Centrally Morrison is only a pale shadow of last season’s version and only Shotton showed any fight. Davies was excellent in the middle but with no real supporting cast must have felt like King Canute facing a tusami whilst up front both Jutkiewicz and Adams battled away manfully but mostly to no avail.

Of the subs, only Stewart looked like he could make a difference but he’s becoming a bit of a cameo man with his fleeting appearances not being translated to games where he’s on the starting team sheet. Rather alarmingly, Zola sounded a bit of a lost soul in the post match interview mumbling about Blues struggling through not helping each other out, missing the point that the players at the back and in midfield just aren’t good enough to keep possession and have to move the ball through quicker to the front players.

So what do we need in the transfer window? A good left full back as Grounds has now reverted to type. Perhaps a quick and nippy forward to support Jutkiewicz but most of all a midfielder who is a leader and who can talk and command. No wonder Zola is rumoured to want Lansbury but we might as well go for Neymar looking at the other clubs competing for his signature.