Eck, when you are writing the team sheet out and about to fill in the right back position, please snap your pencil in two and grab a pen and ink (preferably of the indelible variety) for the name of Allan Hutton. Most of the support can see week in and week out that this is a necessity.
Zurab is a fish out of water at right back and will never be anything than below average in a position he is clearly uncomfortable with (never more evident than against AZ Alkmaar). For the sake of the team, and with the form of our central defensive partnership, I was going to suggest leaving Zurab out of the line up altogether. His chance would surely come when either big Marv or Boum were injured or suspended. Boumsong’s deparure (arrghhh!) has now given Zurab the chance for an extended run where he belongs and he is already looking the part.
Approaching the above match, I was a tad nervous about the outcome given our erratic for in the run up to this game (Alkmaar, Inverness, Dundee). Still, now right back was sorted out, anything less than a draw looked unlikely. Then the team was announced!
Ricksen at right back, Zurab performing (some sort of) a man-marking role, all our midfielders left on the bench. Trust me when I say that I thought the game was a bogey before a ball was kicked. You wonder if our manager tackles these types of matches thinking because it is a European game it is compulsory to try and think up something different and clever to outsmart the opposition’s manager. Unfortunately, we always seem to outwit ourselves. What on earth is wrong with keeping a settled formation that was, for the most part, paying some dividend? – I believe this would have secured us the point we needed (despite Boumsong’s off day). Anyway, the game was already gone when our real right back appeared after 56 minutes, Ricksen was pushed into midfield and then Rae was brought on. The initial team selection and tactics were quite simply a monumental cock-up by the manager and he can’t afford any more repeats if he is to stay much longer (there is still time for Eck as long as he can now show he has learned from his mistakes)
Trial by TV
So the SFA say Bobo Balde has no case to answer for the hand in Jim Hamilton’s face during their match against Livingston at the tattie dome (the same offence that Baby Shrek has just got a 3 match man for down south). Jim Hamilton of course said there was nothing in it, much the same as Stephen Pearson said about Nacho Novo (well we all know what happened to Nacho). You just know that if it had been Ricksen’s hand in Hamilton’s face the outcome would have been different. The countless years of inTIMidation are certainly reaping rewards.
Interesting to see Alan Thompson’s dive to earn the free kick that led to Sellick’s second goal away to Dunfermline (no contact whatsoever and it was 5.9’s across the board). And this just a couple of weeks after Thompson’s indignation at his sending off against the Gers. Well done PL, I say – just what this scrote deserved!
It was amusing to hear Andy Wanker condemn Thompson for his blatant dive against Dunfermline. What a hypocrite! It was outside the box I suppose and if it had been inside it would have been perfectly OK to dive to get a penalty – that’s right, ain’t it Andy?