Ablett Should Take The Flack
A poor performance by the County back-line handed the three points on a plate to Brentford at Griffin Park today.
In a lacklustre first half which looked to be heading for an even scoreline at the break, Brentford striker Charlie MacDonald gratefully took advantage of on-loan defender Paul Huntington's slip and stroked it home to give the Bees the half-time lead.
Huntington has made three costly errors in recent weeks now, including heading a looping ball straight into the path of Neil Harris for his first goal in the 4-0 defeat to Millwall, and hauling down Southend striker Lee Barnard in the 2-0 defeat a few weeks back.
County had a chance to level it straight away though, winger David Poole cutting inside but opting to go alone rather than picking out the on-rushing Danny Pilkington in acres of space.
County piled the pressure on in the second half, but it was all to no avail as MacDonald slipped a simple through ball to sub Miles Weston, who ran straight through the County defence unchallenged to slot home.
A second defeat in two games then, and that's now 6 goals conceded in both. And the buck stops with Ablett today I'm afraid.
Let's get it right, Gary Ablett's done a sterling job with the resources available to him, but if there's a criticism of him, it is that he tends to let games peter out or drift along before making any necessary changes. Today, looking to bounce back from the demoralising 4-0 defeat, we should have gone with two up front and got at the shaky Brentford back four.
Yet again though, Ablett opted for Nicholas Bignall on his own and we can't rely on a young inexperienced striker to do the business when our midfield is as flimsy as it is, with the likes of the grafter David Poole and the youngsters in Jamie Vincent and Greg Tansey.
Oli Johnson was brought on to partner Bignall but you would argue that it was too little too late at 2-0 down.
'We need to pick up points from the teams around us in the table' - Gary Ablett's words. Well there's only one way to do that, and that's to get the ball in the net. And with two up front, it's a lot more likely than with one. Simple maths...
Anyway, I'll take the chance to remind you that there's the FA Cup First Round draw live tomorrow on ITV1 from 1pm. County are ball number 42.
Here's to Altrincham away...