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Andy_P

Season 2020’21: Game 25: Dundee Utd (H)

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A sluggish opening 15 minutes, a very anxious last 15 minutes or so but with a lot to be content about in between.

The result in itself is fantastic. It boosts our league position, it boosts confidence and it drags a team above us down into the mix.  But there was a lot more besides that to be encouraged about. Our finishing wasn't perhaps as good as it could have been this evening, but I struggle to think of us carving out quite so many clear cut chances for a good while. 

Then there was the performance of Cole.  Perhaps his finest in either of his two spells in claret and amber?  The goal was a wonderful piece of quick thinking, speedy reactions and execution.  The other goalscorer was pretty impressive too and undoubtedly one of his best displays of the campaign also. 

Really good to see us  have the ability create so many good opportunities without necessarily having tonnes of possession and dare I say it, with at first glance a midfield that many would suggest more is set up for it's destructive work rather than creativity.

I guess given it has worked on a couple of occasions it is doing as intended, even if it isn't pretty, but the "see it out" changes from Alexander leave me on tenterhooks somewhat.  I fear the day that we don't hold firm despite battening down the hatches.

Other than the chance he set up soon after coming at Pittodrie I haven't been overly impressed with Smith both in terms of looking a threat in front of goal or his ability to hold the ball up and let the team get up the park a bit when we've been holding a lead.  Bringing another defender on in McGinley and effectively playing him as a left sided defensive midfielder reduces the scope for doing anything attacking of note further.  Still I guess the fact that we managed to see it tonight as opposed to Tannadice when much the same was happening in the last 5-10 minutes is most certainly progress.

But another evening to enjoy on the back of a fine result. The rebuilding process takes another positive step.

 

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I thought Lamie had as many slack points as solid ones so a neutral performance from him (which is an improvement), I thought Bevis had a very solid game but lost his man at the goal.  Maguire started strongly and faded towards the end.  Campbell did more positive things than of late.  Watt should have had a hat trick, use the left foot for the first, header the second, don’t hit the keeper with the third.

Delighted with the win.

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Just now, ropy said:

I thought Lamie had as many slack points as solid ones so a neutral performance from him (which is an improvement), I thought Bevis had a very solid game but lost his man at the goal.  Maguire started strongly and faded towards the end.  Campbell did more positive things than of late.  Watt should have had a hat trick, use the left foot for the first, header the second, don’t hit the keeper with the third.

Delighted with the win.

Completely agree with this.  He was a lot better than normal, but all the dodgy moments in defense, failure to clear etc, were from him.

Better ? Absolutely. Good ? No !

 

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We’ve not been perfect with the new manager in charge, far from  it, but there’s plenty to be encouraged about. Far better than the end of robinsons reign for sure.. We seem to have a structure both offensively and defensively. However we need to continue the improvements. Make no mistake we’re still in the shit

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1 hour ago, 'WellMagic! said:

Lamie & Kelly our stand out performers in the second half. Not even kidding about Lamie either, much more competent at CB. 

The most worrying thing is how our midfield naturally just sit in as games go on. This happened under Robbo and is continuing under GA. It's almost entirely linked to Watt being subbed too, he's the only player we have that can relieve pressure.

I can't remember the last time Watt lost the ball. Even when he's clearly blowing out his arse he can still take the ball for a run or win a free kick. 

It's the way of the midfield without Polworth. Always be that way with the 3 midfielders all being defensive mids. Our front 3 carries threat which goes to pot when Smith comes on, which is not a dig at him necessarily.

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6 minutes ago, wunderwell said:

It's the way of the midfield without Polworth. Always be that way with the 3 midfielders all being defensive mids. Our front 3 carries threat which goes to pot when Smith comes on, which is not a dig at him necessarily.

Jock Brown made a similar comment in the first half. Even with Polworth there is too big a gap between the midfield and strikers. When Smith won a few knock downs,for example, there was no one near enough to take advantage.The midfield as is, is unbalanced. We need a good holding midfielder, a box to box runner and a creative type. Given GA's comments post Paisley, I suspect he'll bring in Foley fairly soon to give us more experience and to prevent us from sitting too deep, when not in possession.

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11 minutes ago, Kmcalpin said:

and to prevent us from sitting too deep, when not in possession.

That will be the first time in 50 years then...

Happy with the result. Even happier we are winning when there is obvious room for improvement.

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That was an outstanding result, great performance and enjoyable game. The fact we lost a goal then were up against it for the last 15 minutes could be viewed as a negative, but that's going to happen in this league so the players deserve every credit for battening down the hatches and coming away with the three points. A test of character which would have failed for most of 2020. 

Actually really looking forward to seeing how Alexander approaches the Celtic game now. 

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Few random thoughts on tonight's game..

I've always liked Barry Maguire but there have been occasions when I've thought his chance had passed. Tonight was as confident as I've seen him look in a Motherwell shirt. New manager, fresh start? I don't know if he's the kind of player other clubs would come in for but certainly think he can do a job in the SPL. Something to be said for bringing through academy players simply to keep in your team for years..

Cole looking a real handful. Made the point in the Transfer thread that Cole and Watt would score goals at this level if we create chances for them. At least Cole is proving me right. Watt, although not scoring is crucial in the way he links things..

Didn't think we were under the cosh as much as some on here seem to. Their keeper was far busier than Kelly. After they scored, it got a bit anxious but I wasn't too concerned as I have come to the conclusion that Shankland is pish... 

Five games in, I'm liking how much Alexander is managing to get out of players that were already here. Winning a league game with a centre half partnership of Mugabi and Lamie should be enough to secure a Manager Of The Year nomination at least....

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What is Maguire’s win percentage when he has started games this season?

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Very encouraged by our strikers tonight. They have talent and all worked very hard. Cole especially has hit a rich vein of form and was a real nuisance to United tonight. My only concern is getting them to play together in the most effective way. I like Watt but he's no goalscorer, yet many chances are falling to him. We'll get there though and 2 goals tonight will help.

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32 minutes ago, ropy said:

What is Maguire’s win percentage when he has started games this season?

Started 6. Won 4, lost 2. 

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7 minutes ago, CoF said:

Started 6. Won 4, lost 2. 

It’s not bad 

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Shankland is indeed pish. Siegrist is their MVP.

Lamie did a decent job, but he did have his customary brain farts, and I can't imagine he'll start against Celtic.  The rest of the defence had a pretty good game, and it's great to see Carroll settle into a run of games.

The midfield was overrun, but all three put in good performances, with Maguire sticking out in the first half. Hopefully he can get a few more games and solidify a place in the side. As said above, not all youngsters need to be saleable assets, we also need reliable long-term players. It will be interesting to see who makes way when players return from injury.

The forwards all had excellent games and ran themselves into the ground. Long showed again what he is capable of when it comes to finishing, and Cole is deadly from 6 yards. Watt is indispensable at the moment as he links well and gets us up the park, but he really needs to improve his finishing. 

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Don't know what game the United manager was watching as he was saying "In the second half, we have completely and utterly dominated and looked like the only team going to score, apart form a couple of breakaways. "

Cole should have scored with the one on one, Long and Watt also had two tremendous chances.

Nice to enjoy back to back wins. The trio up top done well. Nice to pull Killie and United into the mix. Need to make those games in hand count.

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Re: midfield sitting too deep. I put this down to confidence. How many times in the last year have we gone into the final 20 of a game and ended up dropping points? You hear it spoken about often, how teams retreat those extra few yards when mentally not in a good position. It’s a vicious circle though, as dropping deeper in turn results in losing more goals and herein lies the problem. Hoping that this will fix itself through winning games.

Was overall very pleased with the game. Don’t think anyone had a bad game, with most having a good game. The midfield three were very good, but for a couple of slack passes and some poor set piece delivery in the second half I thought Maguire was up there as a MOTM contender. The top three were unplayable at times, the second goal was great link up play between several players and I thought we looked really dangerous on the counter. It’ll be good to get Gallagher back in the team.

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If we had gotten the third our play deserved it would have been a comfortable finish but successfully holding on again will hopefully be good for our confidence.

Lamie did well after not starting for a while and seeing two centre backs come. We definitely can't fault his effort.  Devante Cole was superb and hopefully he is up for getting himself noticed by scoring the winner on Saturday.

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We had a 20 min purple patch in the first half where we really had them on the ropes and got our 2 goals.  The front three were superb, the full team, brimming with confidence, moving at pace and we won the game due to this patch of play. 

If those 20 mins become the norm and we get more comfortable at holding the ball the rest of the reason could look so much better.

Well done lads. 

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Great effort from the entire team. Not one of them going through the motions. Kelly seems to be spreading a wee bit belief through the defence, and there's a real threat up front.

Still concerned about the bench. Smith might be useful in certain circumstances, but last night wasn't one of them. Hopefully one or two of the new guys will provide decent options - I'd like to see Foley get a chance. Can't see the forward line all starting at Parkhead unless Watt is played deeper, so mibbe there?

Nowhere near out of it yet, plenty of bumps to come, but I really believe we'll be okay.

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Kelly really is a fantastic keeper. His shot stopping, communication and handling of crosses are great.

 

Also I've gone from thinking Maguire will never make it to hoping we extend his contract ASAP in a matter of a few games. A very tidy player indeed.

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Forget yer 52 yarders, if Cole's Cruyff turn had resulted in a goal that's yer winner right there.

 

Oh aye and as a ref myself I'm trying to figure out how that challenge on McGinley is not a penalty.  Fur Fuch's sake, wonder if he'd a given a foul if it was the middle of the park? I know it's the same laws but Law 18 of the game says there needs to be a higher bar of evidence for foul play in the box.

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3 hours ago, Kat said:

Cole should have scored with the one on one, Long and Watt also had two tremendous chances.

Smith towards the end too when he was fed through by Campbell. 

Just delighted we're actually created chances now. 

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12 minutes ago, GazzyB said:

3 mins 53 seconds, GA with some choice words for Jake Carroll :D

That wasn't GA,  That was me!!! Lol

  • Haha 1

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