Month: September 2014

27.09.2014… Dartford (h)…

Nuneaton Town 1 Dartford 2

JPR James Parnell Stadium… Saturday September 27th… 3pm

Attendance: 759

Ticket: £14 – Programme: £3

First home game for new manager Liam Daish; and one which Nuneaton conspired to throw away in the last quarter of an hour.

Struggling to Stay Up... Could be a Metaphor...?

Struggling to Stay Up… Could be a Metaphor…?

Leading 1-0 at the interval through a 35th minute Craig Curran goal, Nuneaton appeared to go on the defensive in the second half in an attempt to hold on to what they had. It didn’t work, as the half progressed they surrendered more and more possession, and chances culminating in a Dartford equaliser from Elliot Bradbrook via the penalty spot in the 78th minute.

Second Half Action...

Second Half Action…

Almost immediately Nuneaton had a strong penalty appeal for handball turned down, only for Dartford to break quickly and score their second through a Danny Harris header.

Nuneaton went forward in search of an equaliser but it was a case of too little, too late…

Nuneaton Town; Charles-Cook, Franklin, Dean (YC), McSweeney (Brown 68), Geohaghon, Armson (John 90), Streete, Fowler, Walker, Curran, Brown (Hutchinson 21) Not Used; Starosta, Wren

Goals; Curran (35)

Dartford; Mitchell-King, Mcauley, Sweeney, Bradbrook, Collier, Daley (Cornhill 72), Burns, Bradbrook, Hayes (Bender 71), Crawford (Harris 58) Not Used; Green, Ibrahim

Goals; Bradbrook (78) [Pen], Harris (80)

As usual, More pictures on flickr…

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20.09.2014… Derby v Cardiff…

Derby County 2 Cardiff City 2

The iPro Stadium…

Saturday September 20th… 3pm…

Attendance: 27,251

Ticket: £32 – Programme: £3

Derby County versus managerless Cardiff City…

A chance to watch a game as a neutral observer, although black and white always takes preference. A stress free afternoon after last weekend’s trip to Southampton…

The Ground…

Only my second ever visit to Pride Park, sorry, the iPro Stadium, and my first since Boxing Day 1997. It’s definitely bedded in over the intervening years (all 17 of them, scary) but suffers from the same curse as a number of other modern grounds, i.e. location, being stuck in the middle of an industrial estate…

Looks good on the inside (a fantastic choice of seat colours), a situation helped by the fact that it was almost full, with the exception of a few small gaps in the corners. The atmosphere was pretty good too, especially during the second half. The Derby fans really got going after the interval whilst the Cardiff fans were noisy throughout…

A small observation… not too keen on the level of sponsorship, numerous hoardings attached to the outside of the ground as well as announcements during the game stating ‘substitutions sponsored by…’, ‘goal time sponsored by…’. A little bit too much for me but I guess that’s just the nature of the modern game at all levels…

derby v cardiff...

Outside the iPro Stadium…

The Game…

Derby dominated the first half, without some great goalkeeping from David Marshall the game could have been over by half time. The general expectation was that Derby would kick on in the second half and win the game rather comfortably, it didn’t happen…

Within ten minutes of the restart they were 2 goals down. The first came from a hooked effort by Aron Gunnarsson from the edge of the six yard box following a corner; the second, a rocket shot from 15 yards to the top right from Peter Whittingham…

Substitute Jordon Ibe got one back for Derby from close range soon after coming on, gradually the noise and the Derby pressure began to build. With 6 minutes left Johnny Russell fired in an equaliser from 20 yards out, via the post, and the comeback was complete. Derby could have won it in the time remaining but, even taking the first half into consideration, it would have been harsh on Cardiff…

derby v cardiff...

Inside the iPro Stadium…

In summary, a great game played out in front of a large and noisy crowd, and one that could have gone either way. It’s good to see that despite the best efforts of the Premier League, the Championship is still in a healthy place; and given the likelihood that it’s where we’re going to be playing next season, that’s definitely good to know…

Derby County; Grant, Keogh, Whitbread, Christie, Forsyth, Hughes, Eustace (Best 59), Bryson, Martin, Ward (Russell 79), Dawkins (Ibe 53) Not Used; Naylor, Roos, Shotton, Mascarell

Goals; Ibe (61), Russell (84)

Cardiff City; Marshall, Ecuele Manga, Brayford, Ralls, Connolly, Gunnarsson (YC) (Maynard 72), Pilkington, Noone (Le Fondre 63), Whittingham (YC), Adeyemi, Jones Not Used; John, Daehli, Javi Guerra, Moore, Morrison

Goals; Gunnarsson (51), Whittingham (55)

As usual, More pictures on flickr…

13.09.2014… Southampton (a)…

Southampton 4 Newcastle United 0

St. Mary’s Stadium… Saturday September 13th… 3pm

Attendance: 29,678

Ticket: £25 (Reciprocal Agreement) – Programme: £4

What can I say that hasn’t already been said…

Abject, woeful, shambolic, gutless, heartless, inept… All words  that could, and probably have, been used to describe this performance. The sight of Alan Pardew, welded to his seat, whispering instructions to the one man PR machine that is John Carver would have been laughable if it wasn’t so depressingly familiar.

southampton v newcastle...

Outside Ikea, Yesterday…

The Match (Sort Of)…

At no point during the afternoon did we look capable of mounting an attack, let alone scoring a goal; and at no point during the afternoon did we look capable of even the most basic defending… 4-0 flattered us…

The players turned up in a coach with blacked out windows, disappeared into the ground, headphones in, without a word. They then proceeded to spend 90 minutes barely going through the motions before leaving the pitch at great speed with their heads down. One exception, a special mention has to go to Daryl Janmaat, he may have played as badly as his team mates but at least he had the decency to wander down and acknowledge the 2,500 travelling supporters at the final whistle (and encourage one or two of the younger stragglers to do the same)…

southampton v newcastle...

The Riverside…? Can’t Be, Not Enough Empty Seats…

The Rest…

First trip to Southampton since 1998, St. Mary’s has replaced The Dell in the intervening period; I never saw us win there either but at least the place had some character. Like many modern grounds, St. Mary’s is utterly uninspiring, flanked by a railway line, industrial units and a gasometer. Neat and tidy and practical but lacking anything to distinguish it from any other new build, in fact, squint and you could be at the Riverside…

Always find at least one positive though; in this case, I managed to make it back to Southampton Central for the train back to Birmingham with time to spare, even taking into account the bottleneck on the bridges after leaving the ground. In fact I was back home in time for ‘Match of the Day’. Did I watch it? Of course not…

Southampton; Forster, Fonte, Bertrand, Alderweireld, Clyne, Davis, Cork (Gardos 89), Schneiderlin, Pellè, Long (Wanyama 45), Tadic (Ward-Prowse 67) Not Used; Davis, Yoshida, Mayuka, McQueen

Goals; Pellè (6, 19), Cork (54), Schneiderlin (90) 

Newcastle United; Krul, Coloccini, Williamson , Janmaat, Haidara, Anita (Tioté), Gouffran, Sissoko (Ameobi), Colback (YC), Cabella (Pérez Gutiérrez), Riviere Not Used; Elliot, Obertan, Taylor S, Armstrong

Goals; None

As usual, More pictures on flickr…