I was debating if I should change something up since we are struggling so much to score goals, when for our next match our coaches recommend in the pre-match meeting that Crew struggles greatly against 4-5-1 formations and we should try that out. Fine with me, lets mix it up.
-- Christian Smith has begun training again and will see some minutes in our next match.
January 18th, 2014
Woking (8-10-9, 17th) @ Crewe (10-5-12, 15th)
They're 4:5 favorites today. We're 3:1 dogs. We beat these guys 1-0 at our place back in August, but we weren't playing like crap every match then so totally different. Crewe scores a lot more than most mid-table teams, 40 goals in 27 matches, and two players dominate. Clayton Donaldson has 17 goals and Calvin Zola has 12. Wow.
The 4-5-1 recommended by the coaches has a DMC, two MC, two AM, one striker. Here's what we are doing today.
We're playing with a defensive mindset and telling our back line to drop deep based on a scouting report that Crewe love to counterattack and use their speed to take advantage.
19': Smith gets a yellow for grabbing a jersey while going up for a header. 3 total shots all off target is it so far.
33': The first on target shot is from 30 yards out by Crewe, Lynch grabs it... yawner so far big time.
38': Subotic starts the attack, pushign the defense back as he runs with the ball from midfield... back to pulis, ahead to subotic, he runs into the box and slides it out wide to harsanyi, a cross goes in, Upson gets his head on it... the keeper with a reflex save, pushing the ball away, it so looked like that was going in. Close! Upson comes down hurt to add injury to... not scoring I guess.
HALF: We have 4 shots, just the one on target. Crewe has 5 shots, just 2 on target, 4 of their 5 are from long range. We're dominating possession at 61/39 just struggling to get anything going forward. Upson is coming out, Ball is in. Pablo is in for Subotic as well.
59': Zola gets free i nthe penalty area and has a strike on goal but its right at Lynch and he holds it well.
75': Little used HArry Arter is in at DMC for Smith. Arter could see more time on the field if we switch to this permanently.
83': There's a long ball forward by Crewe to right midfielder Bennett, he recives the ball cleanly and strikes... off the crossbar! We clear it.
84': We generate a counterattack, Pablo with a loooong run with the ball from behind midfield down the left, wide of the penalty area, he crosses and we kind ahave numbers here... there's a header by Pulis, it grazes the crossbar as it goes over.
That'll do it.
Crewe 0 : 0 Woking
We stayed in a defensive mindset all match and ended with a draw on the road against a team that scores a lot more than we do. This is one that we'll take.
Nikolaou has a brilliant perforamnce with a 7.8 rating in the back. Thomas 7.2, Lynch 7.1, Harsanyi 7.3 as the left attacking midfielder. Pablo was poor in the second half with a 5.8 rating.
-- "Subotic has not scored in over 15 hours of competitive football but insists he remains confident"
-- "Pablo has now played over 15 hours of competitive soccer and looks badly short of confidence"