Written by kirsikka
Queens Park Rangers manager Mark Warburton did a number on AFC Bournemouth boss Jason Tindall today, particularly in the first half. One of the things to come out of the Coventry game was that we were relying on both wing-backs to provide all the width for the team and it was a lot on their shoulders. At times they were looking for a player that wasn’t there to interplay with even though we dominated that match.
QPR set up to force them both back with wide forwards pushing right on them and thus completely nullify our threat down the flanks in the first half. It was very effective and something of which other teams will have taken note.
At the same time, the centre of the park was a congested mess. Nobody looking for that threaded ball through and close interplay often resulting in a stray pass giving away possession. The same could be said for the playing out from the back. We were lucky QPR failed to capitalise on those chances, although a hat tip to Begovic for being on top of the threats.
The second half we showed more ambition with Rico, in particular, getting forward to support on his side. If we want to persist with this formation it’s essential this happens more and on both sides. Having a wrong-footed fullback is problematic when we want them to burst down the line and swing in crosses.
With none of the 3 CMs providing guile, two strikers that need service provided to them and little coming from wide we looked exceptionally poor going forward. The difference Danjuma made was marked in being a forward that can also create. It didn’t pay off but JT needs to learn from this.
The match as a whole was pretty insipid with an officious ref repeatedly helping to break up our attacks by calling things back to award us a free-kick. The rest of our play wasn’t his fault but he certainly helped to suck any pace from the game.
QPR were midtable last season and I’m not sure I saw anything to show they’ll be anything more this season. A better team would have scored against us today. Having said that, their fans must be wondering how one earth we had ten points before today so maybe it was an off day for everyone.
Man of the match against QPR
Selected player comments:
Smart off his line to snuff out a threat when we gave the ball away, down quick for a routine but important save from a snapshot. Great quick long throw to set up an attack. Looked completely assured at all times. Is a keeper reborn? Well, we haven’t seen one of those points winning performances keepers at the top of their game sometimes produce but he hasn’t needed to do that as yet. Done everything that’s been asked for him and looking more and more confident by the match. Great to see.
Becoming more and more essential to the team by the match at the moment. Mostly solid defensively and second half started to get forward. Although he’s made that LCB role his own, I think I’d prefer Kelly to go back in there and push him into the left wing-back role to provide a better tactical balance for the team as a whole.
His winger had him on toast for the first quarter of the match and he looked every inch a right-back at left-back. Improved after that but when he went to the right during the second half he looked so much more comfortable. I think this is a tactical rather than an individual issue. We need a left-footer in the left wing-back role. Let’s hope Daniels is close to securing a contract as any scout worth his salt will have this marked as a weakness for the thick and fast games coming up.
Still early but I’m getting suspicious that he may have a problem. We know in ref briefings they sometimes single out players to watch and it’s starting to look like he’s somehow ended up on that list. For the second game running anytime, he challenged for the ball a free-kick was given against him. For the second game running anytime, he was fouled it was waved away.
In the first half, he was shoved by a defender and so went back in with a weaker shove but somehow had a free-kick go to QPR. Then in the second a QPR player went to ground and kicked him and was somehow awarded a free kick in an, at best, egregious moment from the ref.
I’m not sure what he can do but it’s an unpleasant pattern developing for a young player in his first two league starts for us. You could see his frustration developing, I hope he can keep a lid on it.
Some silky skills but he needs to release the ball sometimes as well. He won’t beat every team single-handedly. I hope and expect him to start on Wednesday though.
Overall grade for today: D
All in all a pretty lifeless performance where JT was out-thought by his opposite number. A point is still a point but sometimes you look at the balance of play rather than the score for a more realistic picture. Sadly, I can’t say we deserved more than we got and we could almost count ourselves lucky to get that.
It’s a quick turnaround to Wednesday but one of King (if his head is in the right place), Brooks, Junior or Danjuma needs to start then since they’re the creative forces for the team and change how the opposition have to deal with us.
Tinpot Club wrote…
This formation worked at Coventry as we were able to get in behind them. We struggled with that today. I think TBH we need 3 upfront at home. It wasn’t really an option today with Brooks out and Danjuma, Stan and Roro not ready to start.
I’d prefer 4-3-3 but just how good was Rico at left centre back today. Perhaps if Daniels can get fit he could give us a much-needed left-footer on that flank.
At the moment too many players are looking to come inside and there’s not any space to create openings. Eventually, I think we are going to have to back a call on either Smith or Stacey at RWB. – Join the conversation, click here.