Singing the Big-Crowd Blues

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Dr Bob
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Singing the Big-Crowd Blues

Post by Dr Bob » Wed Dec 26, 2018 8:06 pm

Kick-off. hoof. Hoof. Missed pass. Up and under. Goal - course not. Mackie offside. Again. Crowded midfield. tippy-tappy-sideways. Zzzzzzzzzz. Ooohhhh - hoof. Hoof. Dickie 5-yard missed pass. No space. Tippy-tappy sideways. Hoof. Zzzzzzzzzz. Whistle.

AAAAAAHHHHHHHH - empty bladder. Catch up with GD.

Hoof. Up and under. Zzzzzzzzz. Missed pass. Zzzzzzzzzz. Browne comes off - was he on? Cross-header-goal. Defence AWOL. Hoof. Zzzzzzzz. Time running out. Tippy-tappy sideways.

Whistle puts us out of our misery.


Kairdiff Exile
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Re: Singing the Big-Crowd Blues

Post by Kairdiff Exile » Wed Dec 26, 2018 8:40 pm

I didn’t go (Jerome) - but seeing it described as a “big crowd” when we attracted 8,000-odd for a Third Division game made me chuckle. I was with Oxford-based family on Christmas Day, and I idly flicked through an old programme and did a double-take when I saw our Boxing Day game in 2006 against the mighty Woking attracted over 11,000. Admittedly we were top of the Conference at the time, but even a few years earlier in Division 4 under Ian Atkins we could still get nearly 9,500 for a Boxing Day game against Orient.

But, as I say, I didn’t go myself today so I’m part of the problem! I did go to the away game at Southend in October though, and IIRC we were lucky to come away with a point that day. So swings and roundabouts.

Hope all RO contributors are enjoying the festive season, irrespective of results.

Werthers Original
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Re: Singing the Big-Crowd Blues

Post by Werthers Original » Wed Dec 26, 2018 11:48 pm

To be fair, it was just under 9,000, but I agree that gates are disappointing. It’s a shame as, today notwithstanding, we’re a pretty good side who have served up some exciting games recently. I guess we aren’t going anywhere- all we can hope for is mid table in Div 3, which oddly may be less of a draw than promotion from the Conference.

Radley Rambler
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Re: Singing the Big-Crowd Blues

Post by Radley Rambler » Thu Dec 27, 2018 10:48 am

Well it wasn't great but given the recent run, I think we can cut the team a bit of slack. As Robinson said in the post-match interview, we were below par and so at least he's stopped blaming everyone else when we lose and has injected some reality into these interviews.

It's a shame that we played badly in front of a larger than normal crowd but then again, why should the part-timers see a good performance, I'd rather we turn it on in front of those who attend on a regular basis.

Big two games coming up. Lose both and we're right back into the relegation fight. Win both and we'll be close to mid-table.

Old Abingdonian
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Re: Singing the Big-Crowd Blues

Post by Old Abingdonian » Thu Dec 27, 2018 4:00 pm

I thought KR was right about two things in his much more measured post-match interview. Southend did a skilful job on us, and did not look a bad side at all. Secondly, we looked tired, and there were no options on the bench likely to be able to change the game in the final third.

Christmas dinners (other side) is well wide of the mark, I think. It's having a 'settled side', which is in one sense an asset, but without the opportunity to do some judicious rotation, can lead to performances like yesterday's.

Does anyone know whether our first-half effort was offside?

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Re: Singing the Big-Crowd Blues

Post by OtmoorYellow » Thu Dec 27, 2018 5:59 pm

Disappointing performance, disappointing result, disappointing crowd.

Boxing Day has traditionally been a big match day in Oxford for as long as I can remember. Where was everyone?

I wonder if the arrival of Jordan Graham, is indeed the (seemingly obvious) indicator of the loss of Marcus Browne and that Browne has decided to take his foot off the gas a bit? He certainly wasn't at the races.

Southend did to us, what other teams were doing to us earlier in the season, and what we have been doing to others of late i.e. closing down quickly and retrieving the ball. We didn't have the pass and move game that has typified our good run and so players reverted to the low risk ball square or back.

Southend were better than their form suggests and we were less effective than ours suggests. There was little in the match and both sides played such a similar (and dull and boring style) that neither were able to dominate. Nil-nil would have been a fair reflection of the game. Southend I think came for a draw and were delighted to snatch the win. We played like a side trying to avoid defeat, rather than trying to win at home.

Hopefully this is a blip in the run. No team wins every match all the time and all teams lose sometimes.

Kernow Yellow
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Re: Singing the Big-Crowd Blues

Post by Kernow Yellow » Fri Dec 28, 2018 8:31 pm

Stolen from the Other Place:

2001 - Luton 11,121
2002 - AFC Bournemouth 8,349
2003 - Leyton Orient 9,477
2005 - Notts County 5,626
2006 - Woking 11,065
2007 - Crawley 5,900
2013 - Plymouth 10,049
2014 - Shrewsbury 7,502
2015 - Exeter 9,683
2016 - Northampton 11,790

So a pretty average Boxing Day attendance really. Not that surprising given our league position and opposition.

I'm surprised people are saying Southend looked good. I thought they were awful, constantly passing it straight out of play and relying on spoiling tactics to get a point. Which made it all the more galling gifting them all three! They did come out for the second half with a bit more purpose than they showed in the first though, and I thought after 50 mins that I'd take a point if offered.

I was disappointed in our midfield. Brannagan's passing was way off, particularly in the first half. Mousinho may have shored up our defence, but he doesn't offer a lot going forwards. The three creatives looked bright and dangerous when they got the ball, but that wasn't nearly often enough. We passed it to blue shirts with alarming regularity.

Nelson and Dickie are great in the air but both look a bit susceptible when opposition forwards have the ball at their feet, especially Dickie. My first view of Hanson at full back, and I wasn't convinced - poor positioning on more than one occasion. Ruffels was much better, but I would have given Gavin White motm.

Tough lessons to learn for Armani Little. His first touch was a perfectly weighted header to Henry, whose volley I thought was going to bulge the net. His second was to win a free-kick in a dangerous position when he had no right to win the ball. And his third (or possibly fourth) was to give it to a Southend player to run up the other end and create a goal.

Hey ho. As others have said, all runs have to come to an end, and usually to teams you're expecting to beat. Mind you, in the last three games I've seen since the good run started (Brizzle, Gillingham and Southend) we've been really quite poor. Either I'm drawing the short straws or we've been flattering to deceive. Hopefully the former.

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