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Welldaft Mk1

Europa League Campaign 2020-2021

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Agree with many comments. Last night was torture but we progress.  Lets get this out of the way early on: the pitch was awful and maybe thats why we tried to play long high balls. Thats fine but we don't have the players to do that. The referee was awful and totally inconsistent. Coleraine's 2 penalties seemed soft but the camera angle on both was very poor and its impossible to decipher exactly what happened. They were certainly very streetwise and cynical. Neither is an excuse for our poor performance though.

We played reasonably well in the first half but even then looked shaky in defence and on our right flank. Coleraine were allowed to charge up and down our right flank and fire over crosses to their heart's content. Our 3-5-2 or 5-3-2 whichever it was, was very narrow.  The second halve saw a total collapse and our midfield simply capitualted and disappeared. To that extent you have to feel sorry for our defence and strikers. However the defence was poor in its own right.

Thank goodness for Trevor Carson.  Exceptional to save 3 penalties. Lets not forget our penalty takers (O'Donnell, Watt & O'hara) as they kept their nerves and hit the net with well taken efforts. 

I don't know what our problem is, but we have a good squad of players on paper with a few exceptions. I'm not convinced of Lamie or Mugabi.  Is it the system we play or something off the pitch? In the main I don't blame the players. Management must take the lion's share of responsibilty for last night.

We're through and a bit richer.

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44 minutes ago, Kmcalpin said:

Agree with many comments. Last night was torture but we progress.  Lets get this out of the way early on: the pitch was awful and maybe thats why we tried to play long high balls. Thats fine but we don't have the players to do that. The referee was awful and totally inconsistent. Coleraine's 2 penalties seemed soft but the camera angle on both was very poor and its impossible to decipher exactly what happened. They were certainly very streetwise and cynical. Neither is an excuse for our poor performance though.

We played reasonably well in the first half but even then looked shaky in defence and on our right flank. Coleraine were allowed to charge up and down our right flank and fire over crosses to their heart's content. Our 3-5-2 or 5-3-2 whichever it was, was very narrow.  The second halve saw a total collapse and our midfield simply capitualted and disappeared. To that extent you have to feel sorry for our defence and strikers. However the defence was poor in its own right.

Thank goodness for Trevor Carson.  Exceptional to save 3 penalties. Lets not forget our penalty takers (O'Donnell, Watt & O'hara) as they kept their nerves and hit the net with well taken efforts. 

I don't know what our problem is, but we have a good squad of players on paper with a few exceptions. I'm not convinced of Lamie or Mugabi.  Is it the system we play or something off the pitch? In the main I don't blame the players. Management must take the lion's share of responsibilty for last night.

We're through and a bit richer.

I don’t disagree with many of the points of your post but I have on real annoyance that I’ve seen here a lot in recent times. Your last line “a bit richer”. The commentators last night also mentioned the money. Qualifying for the 3rd round generates 1 million euro for the club in earnings to this point In Europe. I get it’s amazing not to have debt etc. in the club but we’ve come into so much money in the summer. I know we have expenses with no supporters and running costs but we must have the healthiest bank balance the club has ever had. That’s all well and good but neither I, nor any of us are supporters and signing songs for the bank balance, we support the team on the park and right now, one is suffering at the expense of the other.

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1 hour ago, Spit_It_Out said:

Do we think its actually the manager that's the issue and not the players?Cause the levels from last season to this is mind blowing.This whole defenders to the half way line and hoof it forward more so diagonally its totally not working when we pass and move it works a treat.

Makes no sense to go away to a team thats bread and butter is long ball soak it up and attack. The amount of times we just kicked it at them for them to run at us time and time again.Punting the ball at Seedorf for him to try and win it with his head is beyond pointless.

We need something up front,something different we don't look like a team that's going to score much goals from the frontline.

The manager is the problem he has signed players who should never be at our club . He picks the team lays down the tactics and supposedly coaches them on training pitch although you could never tell . As a previous poster said it's great to have money in the bank but to have no quality on the pitch could mean relegation ,it's never to soon to talk about relegation I think it's a definite chance with this squad and manager.Lets hope the players have the stomach for a relegation battle 

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2 hours ago, Great Balls of Shire said:

Great post, that pitch definitely a leveller. They never cut us open and barring 2 dubious penalties, probably wouldn’t have scored.

its ok saying you know the ref was blowing for everything but if players throw themselves in the box, any challenge is risky.

chris Long is not a goalscorer 

Agree with you regards the pitch. It was shocking and I actually think our players coped with it as best they could. But Coleraine had several excellent chances to score other than the penalties. Two in particular showed up our central defence  ..... the free header just before we scored and the volley over the bar from a free kick second half.  Most teams would have scored those but thankfully we got off the hook.  I don't think the pitch or the referee should be used to  gloss over just how poor we were and that there are serious issues that need addressed.  Let's pay heed to the warnings we have had rather than dismiss them because of factors outwith our control.

Just thankful we got through.

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16 minutes ago, Yodo said:

The manager is the problem he has signed players who should never be at our club . He picks the team lays down the tactics and supposedly coaches them on training pitch although you could never tell . As a previous poster said it's great to have money in the bank but to have no quality on the pitch could mean relegation ,it's never to soon to talk about relegation I think it's a definite chance with this squad and manager.Lets hope the players have the stomach for a relegation battle 

What players should be at our club in your opinion? Who would be an affordable, reasonable signing that we could have made that would make a monumental difference to how we are playing at the moment?

I don't know how long you've been a follower of the club, but for the 25 or so years I've been a supporter,  we've been consistently inconsistent - a couple of years of relative success, followed by dire, dire seasons, with the occasional middle of the road season chucked in.  In that time we've had players who have been stellar during their stay, players who have been duds from the word go, players who have made slow starts and gone on to better themselves, and others who have faded as quickly as they shone after first signing. 

The players that got us a third place finish last term have had a dip in form, no doubt about that. The players that have been brought in this summer haven;t hit the ground running. Both of these factors have contributed to the sluggish start. 

White was brought in on his pedigree of scoring in the lower leagues - the step up to the SPFL was always something he was going to have to get to grips with and he's had very little quality service from midfield or the wings to help him.  

Lamie was signed after being part of a Livi squad that defied expectation for the last couple of seasons. He hasn't looked the sharpest, but just like Gallagher the year before him,  he looked a decent player at Scottish premiership level last season, so was a worthy signing. 

Debut aside, Lang is full of running and effort and has taken the goals he has scored well. Is he as good as the hype around him suggests? Not yet and possibly won't get there, but if he was, he wouldn't be playing for us.  

We knew what we were getting by re-signing Long, a player who showed what he can do in fits and starts for a club like us. It's took him a week or so to get his fitness up, but he's back to being full of running and a nuisance, as he showed from the bench last night.

O'Hara and Watt were re-signed on the promise of what they showed previously for us, and to an extent, you could add Hastie to that list as well.

No one is disagreeing that the start to the season has been limp at best, but given the budget we have and how well the team performed to get third place- even if it was a bit of a slog after January - saying that the signings made should never be at the club, in my opinion, is a dreadful take.

 

 

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A lot of mitigating factors for last night inc the pitch which was barely useable for rugby and a referee that was as bad as I have seen at that level. Of course I am biased but it did seem as if every slight touch from our player was penalised whereas not the other way around. 

For those reasons alone it because a much trickier tie than it needed to be. 

All that said we played poorly 2nd half in particular and same errors are occurring again and again. Our inability to defend crosses in our box and give several free headers a game is and will cost us v better teams. Time and again we see am opposition player saunter into our box unimpeded and Coleraine could and should have scored before we did when Lamie lost his man. Basic basic defending. 

Our inability to get on the end of crosses in the opposition box is equally infuriating. Do we not practice are we just so bad. You watch ROI defender just signed for Celtic and he watches the ball, runs towards it and generally scores or gets attempts on goal. I am not saying it is that easy but we are miles away from showing that ability. 

Seedorf did little to convince anyone he has a future with Motherwell. Against PT opposition he was gain poor. Failing to control the ball time and again. Yes a shite pitch but I despair. 

We got through and as many point out we have played better (v Odense) and gone out so we should be pleased to an extent. But far too many issues to gloss over. We need to invest some of this Euro windfall in another decent midfielder, striker and possibly even a central defender.  

I fear for us away at Aberdeen this weekend and next week v H B Sheva is we play anything like we did last night or previous few weeks. 

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23 minutes ago, dennyc said:

Agree with you regards the pitch. It was shocking and I actually think our players coped with it as best they could. But Coleraine had several excellent chances to score other than the penalties. Two in particular showed up our central defence  ..... the free header just before we scored and the volley over the bar from a free kick second half.  Most teams would have scored those but thankfully we got off the hook.  I don't think the pitch or the referee should be used to  gloss over just how poor we were and that there are serious issues that need addressed.  Let's pay heed to the warnings we have had rather than dismiss them because of factors outwith our control.

Just thankful we got through.

Interesting to note that Oran Kearney has said that the money Coleraine have made from their run will likely be used to fund an all-weather park.

I wrote on here when the draw was made that their pitch could be a factor.  Having seen several games at The Coleraine Showgrounds, as well as Carrick's Taylors Avenue and the Ballymena Showgrounds - which doubles up as a stock car track of all things - Irish League pitches are horrendous in the main.  Windsor Park is the obvious exception, the Oval is not too bad, while Crusaders and Larne have very good artificial surfaces. Cliftonville's plastic park is 10 times worse than Livi's.

So while it's not an excuse that should be used, the park was always going to be a bit of a leveller last night. You can argue that both teams need to deal with it, but when one team plays on it every week, they get to know the run of it.

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21 minutes ago, Kris-A-Goalda said:

What players should be at our club in your opinion? Who would be an affordable, reasonable signing that we could have made that would make a monumental difference to how we are playing at the moment?

I don't know how long you've been a follower of the club, but for the 25 or so years I've been a supporter,  we've been consistently inconsistent - a couple of years of relative success, followed by dire, dire seasons, with the occasional middle of the road season chucked in.  In that time we've had players who have been stellar during their stay, players who have been duds from the word go, players who have made slow starts and gone on to better themselves, and others who have faded as quickly as they shone after first signing. 

The players that got us a third place finish last term have had a dip in form, no doubt about that. The players that have been brought in this summer haven;t hit the ground running. Both of these factors have contributed to the sluggish start. 

White was brought in on his pedigree of scoring in the lower leagues - the step up to the SPFL was always something he was going to have to get to grips with and he's had very little quality service from midfield or the wings to help him.  

Lamie was signed after being part of a Livi squad that defied expectation for the last couple of seasons. He hasn't looked the sharpest, but just like Gallagher the year before him,  he looked a decent player at Scottish premiership level last season, so was a worthy signing. 

Debut aside, Lang is full of running and effort and has taken the goals he has scored well. Is he as good as the hype around him suggests? Not yet and possibly won't get there, but if he was, he wouldn't be playing for us.  

We knew what we were getting by re-signing Long, a player who showed what he can do in fits and starts for a club like us. It's took him a week or so to get his fitness up, but he's back to being full of running and a nuisance, as he showed from the bench last night.

O'Hara and Watt were re-signed on the promise of what they showed previously for us, and to an extent, you could add Hastie to that list as well.

No one is disagreeing that the start to the season has been limp at best, but given the budget we have and how well the team performed to get third place- even if it was a bit of a slog after January - saying that the signings made should never be at the club, in my opinion, is a dreadful take.

 

 

We have pulled in 3 million for Turnbull and 1 million thus far in Europe; budgeting shouldn't be an issue. We were already debt free. 

Yes, we dont have the income from fans at games, but we also don't have the expense of opening a stadium - the club shouldn't be in financial problems at all. 

It's also a bit of a cop out to go down the road of asking, okay, who would you choose... The club pay full time salaries to have that input and the result at the moment is found severely wanting. 

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8 minutes ago, Kmac said:

We have pulled in 3 million for Turnbull and 1 million thus far in Europe; budgeting shouldn't be an issue. We were already debt free. 

Yes, we dont have the income from fans at games, but we also don't have the expense of opening a stadium - the club shouldn't be in financial problems at all. 

It's also a bit of a cop out to go down the road of asking, okay, who would you choose... The club pay full time salaries to have that input and the result at the moment is found severely wanting. 

Did we have that 4 million in the bank when those signings were made? Nope.

Could we now use 4 million to go and sign a few players better than we currently have? Yes.

Is it guaranteed they'd make the team shoot up the league and play better in Europe? Nope.

It's not  a cop out to ask that question of someone who is outright saying the players we have aren't good enough. The players have signed already have been signed based on how they have previously performed - just like any signing any team makes. They've not all performed as we had hoped, but it doesn't make them unworthy of being signed. 

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3 minutes ago, Kris-A-Goalda said:

Did we have that 4 million in the bank when those signings were made? Nope.

Could we now use 4 million to go and sign a few players better than we currently have? Yes.

Is it guaranteed they'd make the team shoot up the league and play better in Europe? Nope.

It's not  a cop out to sak that question of someone who is outright saying the players we have aren't good enough. The players have signed already have been signed based on how they have previously performed - just like any signing any team makes. They've not all performed as we had hoped, but it doesn't make them unworthy of being signed. 

I'm not advocating spending 4million on players - it wont and shouldn't happen. 

What I'm advocating is a bit of clarity from the club. I've said it before elsewhere. Either the club backs the manager and gives him the funds to get some quality bodies in, urgently, or we take the view that the job is bigger than that and therefore the manager and recruitment also need to be moved. Doing nothing isn't an option. 

We knew there was always a risk in the level of player which we bring in. I'm not a fan of the clubs stance of budgeting for 10th, but it is what it is. There has, without shadow of a doubt, been a policy on building quite big squads recently that have been bereft of real quality, which is a choice. McCall (for all his failings) built a small squad but one with a bit of quality to it. McCall equally wasn't a hero of mine, but I could understand the policy for a club like Motherwell. 

There are recent recruitment decisions and directions which have come home to roost. We are in the fortunate situation where we can afford to get ourselves out of it, but it needs to be decisive.

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1 minute ago, Bigwellfan said:

Heard on the news Israel on 3 week lockdown.  How will that affect us

Automatic 3-0 win. We go again.

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3 minutes ago, Bigwellfan said:

Heard on the news Israel on 3 week lockdown.  How will that affect us

Game will be played at a neutral venue picked by UEFA 

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1 hour ago, Yodo said:

The manager is the problem he has signed players who should never be at our club . He picks the team lays down the tactics and supposedly coaches them on training pitch although you could never tell . As a previous poster said it's great to have money in the bank but to have no quality on the pitch could mean relegation ,it's never to soon to talk about relegation I think it's a definite chance with this squad and manager.Lets hope the players have the stomach for a relegation battle 

I agree that SR hasn't covered himself in glory but how could he have expected Gallagher to go from an International to a distinctly average player who, now as Captain is also not showing much in the way of leadership.

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14 minutes ago, Yodo said:

Game will be played at a neutral venue picked by UEFA 

If the Israeli Government say no way the game can be played in Israel, then it’s up to Hapoel to find a neutral venue. No doubt with UEFA guidance. If they fail to do that, then the tie is awarded to us. 

On the other hand, if the Israeli Government give it the go ahead, and our Government says we cannot travel to Israel, then we forfeit.

 

That’s per a clarifying statement made by UEFA a few weeks ago regarding potential CoVid cancellations. Quite clear cut about who is regarded as defaulting if a game is not played. I suggest Airdrie as a neutral option. More likely Cyprus. 

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I expect we will be playing in Israel with everyone tested before we fly out. 

Ideally their full squad gets it and we get a bye and night off watching dross.

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2 minutes ago, steelboy said:

I expect we will be playing in Israel with everyone tested before we fly out. 

Ideally their full squad gets it and we get a bye and night off watching dross.

You know you can have a night off any time you want if it affects you that much. You dont need to wait for a bye/lock down.

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2 minutes ago, GazzyB said:

Group stages here we come!!!

Great draw for us avoided the big names so we have 2 winnable games, Great chance to progress,  coyw

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