Rovers somehow find yet another way to lose a game. This time lady luck intervenes…
- The starting line up brought a few surprises with Calder and Williams on the teamsheet. Completely unsurprising was the inclusion of Aaron Taylor-Sinclair who would probably start even if one of his legs had fallen off. He promptly gave the ball away 4 times within the first 6 minutes.
- Williams too did nothing to justify his place in the starting XI with a lacklustre performance. The former Swindon striker is seemingly trying to prove to himself that he isn’t utterly bereft of confidence by shooting at every opportunity from all angles. He never came close to testing the Blackpool keeper.
- Riccardo Calder was much more promising however and provided Rovers best attacking outlet in the second half whilst also covering well defensively. Perplexing then to see him brought off for Cameron Stewart when Rovers so badly needed a goal.
- Rovers started the game brightly and dominated possession in the first half but didn’t produce much of note as a stop start game bypassed the midfield. It is not difficult to see why these two teams are struggling at the wrong end of the table.
- Blackpool came with a game plan to soak up pressure and then hit Rovers on the break with long balls over the top. Only some excellent saves from Remi Matthews kept the match goalless at half time as this plan worked a treat. It also led to the winning goal albeit after constant Rovers pressure.
- Donny came out fighting in the second half and pushed for what would have been a vital winner with Middleton and Coppinger finally managing to put their foot on the ball. Both were excellent with the ball at their feet and carved out a number of opportunities that were squandered.
- The blessing in disguise of Luke McCullough being away on international duty meant that Butler and Alcock were able to start together at centre back. The duo confirmed they are by far Rovers best centre back pairing. Alcock in particular made some bone crunching tackles and looked like a man fighting for his club. If only they had played there all season.
- Lund too was excellent and gave everything for the cause but it can’t be overlooked how easily he was taken out of the game by one long ball for Blackpool’s goal. It was cruel on Lund and Matthews. In fact most of the team had put a decent shift in.
- Even more harsh was the fact that Rovers had come heartbreakingly close to scoring just minutes earlier. Tommy Rowe had been so anonymous I had forgotten he was playing in the second half until his glorious curling effort from the edge of the box nearly won it for Rovers, instead crashing down off the bar. A moment that will perhaps define our season.
Blackpool – As much as I wanted Rovers to win the match, all football fans should be united in trying to bring about change at Blackpool. It is a disgrace what has happened at that club and I sincerely hope they go on to stay up (hopefully not at our expense).
Riccardo Calder – The young winger refused to play within himself and it was this confidence that dragged his team mates up from the doldrums. Didn’t deserve to be on the losing side.
Craig Alcock – His best performance in a Rovers shirt. Expect to see him dropped for McCullough at the first opportunity…
Darren Ferguson – It is difficult to see what Rovers would achieve by bringing in a new manager at this late stage of the season. The flip side however is a man who has presided over 15 games without a win should not be allowed to manage our football club any longer. Fergie has been a complete and utter failure in every aspect of the job. Time to go.
Aaron Taylor-Sinclair – Despite being signed by Paul Dickov, no player is as indicative of Fergie’s time as manager as ATS. No desire, no heart, no talent, yet continuously chosen to start every game. This Summers clear out should begin with ATS. Simply not a League 1 footballer.
Andy Williams – Looks like he could play for a thousand years and never score again. Needs to put this rotten last few months behind him and the best place to do that seems to be from the bench. If Tyson is fit he has to start.