|Oldham Athletic 1 v 4 Salford City|
SkyBet League Two
Sunday, 29th December 2019 Kick-off 15:00
|cornishblu added 17:13 - Feb 23|
cornishblu added 17:19 - Feb 23
Mullet added 19:02 - Feb 23
On a pitch which resembled a teenager's face, all pocked and sparsely stubbled with grass Town were again unchanged from Tuesday's tantrum-inducing defeat. On the business end of the horns it was worrying we started like lamp posts in front of the Terriers.
At a ground also home to the devil's code of rugby, the game today was all too Friday night on a Saturday afternoon. No players really got their foot on the ball, opting so often to get under it instead. The midfield pairing of Hyam and N'Daw were spared the recent scrutiny by virtue of the fact they were so often spectators. With the formidable Danns lining up against Town yet again this season, it was poised to be a battle hard and rarely fought it seems.
Town's backline were rarely stretched by the home side's aerial bombardment but likewise they were tempted too many times to return in kind. The exquisite movement of Chopra and the link up play of McGoldrick were the highlights of a drab first half. The troubled striker showed if feet could talk his are as eloquent as any, unlike his fingers. Unfortunately all too often the lack of movement around the front pair drowned out his overtures.
A classical chip early doors from Senegal's gift to the world found Chopra clean through, but a flag late in coming put a full stop to the question of where Town's threat might come from initially. As the hosts had no real incisiveness bar a neat curling shot from Clayton cutting in it was down to Town to entertain. A tall order at the best of times – in case you've not been paying attention for half a decade: these are not the best of times.
Gobern hacked down Martin on the edge of the area. The winger stood over the ball with Cresswell before hitting an effort to the backj post with a lovely ark. The flood of players in the box saw it fail to turn the tide for Town as Smith sprinted back unable to bury another set piece. The hosts sat deep and tight on a narrow pitch. Town's nominated wingers spent nominal amounts of time trying to get the paint of the byline betwixt their luminous studs.
Cutting in from the left just past the half hour mark, Martin was part of only two spells of what you could call football from Town. Finding Hyam who lost control under the pressure of Danns as part of a half dozen of one touch instalments between the midfield and front two. N'Daw was unlucky not to claim the loose ball quickly swept away. But the momentum was lost. The previous such sell was much more short lived but no less encouraging as Chopra stretched the backline to the byline with the flick of McG and a supporting run from the frankly dreadful Edwards.
Where the hosts enjoyed trying to catch out our high back-line, the spoiling nature of Town's set up reduced them to long range deflected shots and weak corners. When Cresswell took our first corner from the left – the effort not only failed to beat the first man it didn't even reach him. Somewhere a mackem would be smiling ruefully. Martin had a go later on and hit the other side of the area. Chopra's attempts to keep the ball moving were closed down and out.
Fittingly enough the vague machinations of attacking play from either side made most look like bums and drunks. Staggering wildly up and down the pitch with hoof after hoof the half time whistle came as a blessing from the famous and flawed Mike Dean following a tasty block from young Hyam. Dean's most puzzling of all the simple calls he got wrong was to allow Gobern three blatant hacks and to throw the ball away unashamedly without the obligatory card for any offence. Such reckless killer instinct might be expected from a man called Oscar but it is not in any way excusable.
Town came back out in desperate need of a change but Mick opted not to make one. It was game made for Murphy and not to start him on such a pitch against such a style was brave. With the ever dependable Edwards having a rare mare, the nagging feeling must have got to Mick. Off came the unfortunate McG; a straight swap, sort of.
The underrated Irishman got right into the fray and danced his way into defenders' paths. The first of many infractions unpunished left Murphy with a very disco look for the remainder of the game. The flapping ripped shirt, no clue to Dean how our man was being welcomed time and again.
It is regrettable to suggest that the tables turned in favour of the hosts. Novak should have scored but for a blatant push the whole ground saw – not to mention an impressive save from the fearless Henderson. He was then hauled off for home fans hero Robinson on loan from the Rams. Young Theo attempted to fleece Town of any points but struggled throughout.
Throwing himself to the floor, caught offside and generally unable to break past the physical force of Chambers, Smith and Stearman he like his colleagues did their best. With the introduction of Scanell the lack of creativity up until now was tellingly topped up against Town. Running with the ball on the floor provided a stiffer test but opened more up for both sides as N'Daw set away Murphy with a low curled ball which the forward miscontrolled as it cannoned sideways. A second attempt over the top was fractionally more successful.
Henderson saved magnificently from Robinson from all of two yards out. A drilled effort ricocheting away, although again flagged late as offside. The keeper was also charged down viciously by the laughably sh1t Vaughan. An act of petulance and thuggery you'd expect by someone employed by the treacherous cook. Between that though the keeper did have one moment of watchthroughthefingermadness. Like Tippi Hedren at an aviary, he flapped not once, but twice at a cross the hosts really should have despatched, such were the weakness of his punches and the defensive static around him.
Cresswell who had failed to use the attacking speed and thrust of Martin opting to punt long throughout the game, improved his range of passing and set away the lightning quick and lightweight attacker. A trademark cut inside and long straight run to the opposite corner of the area without shooting was forthcoming.
Late on Town again changed it up Drury would give up any pretence of Town's to play with width on the long and narrow ground. The temperature had dropped in step with the quality of fare on display until the former Hatter capped off his Alan Quinn impression with a neat one two down the flank to set away Town. The awkwardness of the a CM out wide was not an impediment to a tidy display from Drury.
Soon after him Nouble was introduced for Chopra, all skill sacrificed now for raw pace and urgency. It may have worked to a degree. Huddersfield had made all their changes and now Town dealt them some pressure to deal with. Carlos made his first mark on the game on 90, dummying a defender and in full Uhlenbeek mode drilled a low cross for the sliding Noble – it was well defended. Previously the winger who had been so pedestrian until now wasted a similar chance with team mates aghast at him blazing wastefully over.
The youngster Nouble was at it again winding in from the left with his right boot putting a cross just too far ahead of every one and out for a throw. The distance was made clear by another late flag showing why Town had little in the way to offer even as part of an injury time assault on the game.
Boos rang out from a pocket of purists no doubt enraged at the lack of football their £23 bought them today. Incredibly in a game were both sides looked like also rans in this year's relegation race, one point is better than no points in a game which could have gone either way. Again the midfield was more inert than Nitrogen. The result is all too often fertiliser when it should be explosive, a spark is still not forthcoming yet.
cbower added 19:04 - Feb 23
The first period was dull. Hoofball from both sides and when Novak screwed wide after about 30 minutes for the home side and Hyam had a shot blocked from 18 yards, that was the end of the excitement for the first 45.
The second period was little better. Henderson produced a fine double save from Novak then Danns and the home side had countless corners but they failed to make the most of them. Town never really threatened and McGoldrick was replaced by Murphy. The Irishman offered a little more up top but we remained pretty toothless. The Terriers looked the more likely to take the points, the returning Robinson spurned a golden chance to take all three. Town's best moments came late on, Nouble just failing to put the finishing touch to an Edwards cross. As I said, an appalling game made tolerable by the free tickets!
Some comments on our players:
Henderson- a few ropey punches but a fine double save and one of our better performers
Stearman - solid for the most part. Nothing going forward
Creswell - Just as Stearman. Wasted a corner in first half, you guessed it- failed to beat the first man!
Smith - apart from giving away one needless corner in the second half, Tommy was solid.
Chambers - battled hard and performed with some credit
Edwards - brings us nothing at the moment. Gave it away countless times. Poor crossing, won't take a man on - pointless for me.
Hyam - lots of tackles, aerial challenges and effort. Nothing creative and nothing going forward though
N'Daw - rubbish in the first half. Won nothing, gave it away cheaply. Second half was better. Won his share and put himself about.
Martin - run, chase, run, chase, get ball but threaten nothing and deliver less. Two corners - one failed to beat the first man, the other a hopeful floater which Smithies claimed easily. What do we practice from set pieces?
Chopra - this board likes to moan about Chopra and he has (many) faults. Unfortunately, balls lumped up to him whilst facing 6 feet plus central defenders offer him little chance. He thrives on balls into the channels, good service from the flanks and balls into his feet. He gets precisely none of this!!
McGoldrick - without good service, he will look like Chops. Got to feel for him because he can play
Murphy - looked more of a threat than the others at least
Nouble - only had ten minutes. Pity he didn't get on the end of the late cross but it would have been robbery!
On the local radio, Terriers fans acknowledged their own side were poor but the rightly pointed out that our "style" of football put us as the "worst side they have seen" at the Galpharm this season. They were probably right! A point might be vital but this was one to forget.
PimsNumber1 added 20:38 - Feb 23
NITFC added 23:58 - Feb 23
KellyBBlue added 22:52 - Feb 25
You need to log in to participate in Your Report