Well, at least we didn’t lose..

Doncaster Rovers – 1
Nottingham Forest – 1

I suppose we should be happy with a draw really given our recent forays at the Keepmoat Stadium.  Indeed, given the balance of play and chances, we should be grateful irrespective of recent trends at this particular ground.  Frustrating though that we let in another sloppy goal (okay, we scored one too) – but all in all, a good point I’m thinking.

We remain in eleventh place, and all in all, it’s not too bad.  Despite Billy describing us as ‘leggy’ on Tuesday he elected to go with the same side for the third game in a row, which is quite unusual – and perhaps for the second time in a week he might be ruminating on whether or not he perhaps should have injected some fresh faces into the starting eleven.

Gunter    Morgan    Chambers    Bertrand
Anderson    McKenna    Moussi    Cohen

The early exchanges were fairly inconsequential, it was the home side that eventually got close with the ever-dangerous Billy Sharp finding Woods who’d got the wrong side of Morgan, fortunately Guy Moussi was on hand to make the block at the expense of a corner.  Donny had posed plenty of warning and finally were starting to find ways through the Forest defence.

We did come to life though, Lewis broke forward and crossed towards Dex, who couldn’t get the ball under control to fire a shot and eventually had to settle for a corner.  From the corner Anderson knocked the ball to Lewis who struck powerfully from the edge of the area forcing Sullivan into a decent save.  Which was inconsequential as the offside flag was up!

Just as we were starting to show signs of recovery we took the lead – Donny had had more possession but the Reds were looking dangerous.  We won a corner which was taken by McKenna to the far post, Anderson headed it back across goal, Moussi repeated the exercise from the other post finding Blackstock a yard out with seemingly all the time in the world to fire home from close range.

Alas, just as we were reflecting on the awful defending for our goal – we gifted them a goal in return.  A dubious freekick was awarded to the home side and Forest didn’t get themselves set for it at all, Oster took it quickly finding Lockwood strolling merrily behind the Forest defence to head the ball past Lee Camp who could do nothing.  Very reminiscent of the goal Sheffield United scored against us.

The Reds put together their best move just before half time, a sweeping move from midfield saw Dex and Anderson combine to get the ball forward to Lewis, he unleashed a decent left footed shot from a good position – which was saved by Sullivan for a corner.  Lewis could’ve passed it on to Cohen but well, I think most players would’ve taken a shot.

As the second half got underway it was ebbing very much with the home side – Morgan allowing Sharp to cross to Hayter whose header was only just wide.  Sharp again was at the centre of our troubles, turning deftly to get beyond Morgan but seeing his shot blocked by Chambers.  Cohen and Bertrand picked up tame bookings as the home bench and fans seemed to appeal for everything and the ref generally gave it.

With around twenty minutes gone Cohen had had a nasty collision with Adam Lockwood and was withdrawn for Tyson, holding his shoulder/arm gingerly.  Tys was immediately in the thick of it, getting on the end of a fortunate run of the ball and getting a shot in forcing a corner from a good save by Sullivan.

The substitute was again close from a freekick, striking it low and powerful across the face of goal, with Chambers at the front of a pack of Forest players trying to get a touch to convert it to a goal.  The game descended to real end-to-end stuff as both sides, to their credit, kicked on to try to get the full three points.

An awful clearance from the Moose fell invitingly for Mark Wilson whose drive looked to have given Doncaster the lead but crash off the crossbar.  At the other end McGoldrick, on for McGugan, turned and shot but it was fairly tame and an easy save for Sullivan.  Another good opportunity came with a number of Reds in the box but Anderson’s cross let us down.

Third sub Dele appeared to have given McGoldrick a good opportunity but some good defending denied him the chance – it was the home side that would have the final say, and Billy Sharp is probably still kicking himself now.  A delicious cross from James O’Connor found the striker on the back stick whose header headed toward the top corner, but just wide.

All in all, a draw was probably borderline good result, borderline we should be pleased to have it – underpinned with that slight annoyance that we did have the opportunities to grab what probably would have been an undeserved win.  D’you know what, I could have lived with that!

Billy was downbeat about our first half performance and the manner of concession – and talked again about being ‘leggy’ (so why not change it, Bill?) – he didn’t say much about loan signings, but as with us was pleased that we had the international break to get some clearly needed rest into the players.  I’m anticipating a quiet couple of weeks on the blog!

9 Responses

  1. Like you say fella will take the point and run cant quite get my head round why BD didint mix it up.Fresh legs would have been itching for a run out could have swayed it our way.

    I dont mind the slow start to the season as long as we finish strongly and maybe sneak a play off place.

    U reds

  2. Made the trip today. The identikit stadium is in the “small” mold. 10,500 in there (surely 1500 were forest fans) and not exactly a cauldron – you get the sense that Donny fans are enjoying the ride but cant quite believe they are in the championship.

    Forest were lacklustre today and the game was tight. Lewis was part of just about everything that looked like a goal.

    After a great game a week ago, the moose put in a second mediocre match, and McGoldrick still looks far from match sharp.

    Tyson for Cohen was understandable, but I’d have gone for Radi in place of Moussi to give us more creative threat, as Donny were hardly out muscling us in the middle of the park.

    Adebola did ok, but was not the gamechanger we saw on Tuesday.

    The defensive narcolepsy to give them a free header to equalise was a huge frustration. Once again we concede in the last 15 mins of the first half (that is FIVE we have conceded in that period now, and three in the opening 15 mins of a match)

    So given our lapse in concentration, and the tightness of the game we didnt deserve more than the draw we got.

    Still, on the bright side, we’re 3 points off the play-offs and 7 points of automatic (we can but dream)

  3. Dissapointed with performance yesterday as the game was there to be won despite Donny’s good home record. Annoyed we didn’t kick on once we’d took the lead & I think Billy is culpable in this. The negative mindset we adopt when we are ahead in games was to blame for the equaliser. Rather than Gunter getting the ball back into play when taking the throwing he tried to “eat away” the clock, the ref got frustrated, & called a foul throw. We then loose possession & Donny score from a cheap free kick. I know a little simplistic but we’ve got to build on leads & not rely on a defence who’ve always got a mistake in them.
    Whilst I share the frustrations of Billy in relation to incoming transfers, I feel as though he should have “shook it up” a little yesterday. For me Anderson was poor again & I was dissapointed Radi didn’t get the nod after around sixty minutes.
    Two good/quality additions really would be making such a huge difference. You’ve just got to see the difference Jamie Mackie’s made @ QPR. Forget Whittingham & Pratley widen the bloody net; Liam Lawrence & Tommy Smith would have been ideal. Matt Derbyshire, Andy Reid (wishful thinking with later perhaps), there are players out there. So Arthur, Pleat get your colective arses in gear; if I was ND I’d really be asking questions about those two’s use, ability & professionalism. But then again I’ve been questioning Arthur’s use for years…
    Could be worse we could have just appointed Sven!! Enjoy the break Red’s fans & let’s hope we can strengthen & kick on up until christmas.

  4. i would like to see us play 4 3 2 1. moose / mckenna and cohen in midfield. with raddi and mcgugan playing in front of them and earnshaw ( when fit ) up front. i know there is no height or on the face it width but i think this would scare the shit out of any team. with the full backs bombing forward and linking with the three up front it would still have width. the midfield would cover our defence very well and cohen would be in his best position. the weakest area’s of our team at the moment are the wingers. defense is good goalkeeper is good, centre midfield is good but cohen out wide is not the greatest, ando is not consistent, tyson and mcleary are a hit and a miss as well. be interested to see if anyone agrees or thinks i am just stupid….

  5. IF, if if . . . we had won just 2 of those 1-1 draws we’d be up there in the top 3.

    And yes, I am aware of the old saying “IF, if if . my granny had balls, she’d have been my grandad”.

  6. A quick question for you all:

    Is sven the biggest tart in football? He must be ckfuing mad to go to work with MM!

  7. its all the about the cash reg and yes he has become a laughing stock zero integrity.

    U reds

  8. Yep, a poor performance against a poor donny side who were there for the taking.
    Mystified as to why Lewis was subbed, at least he was trying to get the ball DOWN and play it. Ando and Bertrand really struggled and I thought MacCleary might have made more of an impact.
    Sharpe should have had a hattrick, why do we always struggle against him?
    But, a point away from home is okay, so long as we follow up with a win…

    Sven at the bindippers, ha ha ha!!
    Liverpools woes, ha ha ha!!

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