Why Is Exodus Geohaghon At Vale Park?
Sunday, 13th Feb 2011 11:28 by portvale4ever
Just how woeful was Exodus during yesterdays 1-1 draw with Northampton Town? One of the most astonishingly bereft virtuoso displays in recent times at Vale Park. Up there with Neil Mackenzie and Caig Rocastle. He was utterly dreadful. "He's just like a fat Kevin Francis" was the remark made in the Bycars toilets at half-time...
But before we put the boot into Exodus we ought to consider how much blame should be rightfully attached to Jim Gannon, after all, I'm sure Exodus was only playing to the instructions detailed to him by our bewildering Manager. So, following that line of thought we can assume therefore that Gannon had given Exodus the remit of not getting himself involved too much in the game, to look hesitant and befuddled if the ball did arrive at his feet, and to ensure that his distribution either arrived directly to an opponent or simply went into touch. Much of his passing was atrocious. A bizarre request to make of a player many of us may feel, but then Gannon is clearly a bizarre bloke.
For such a big fella (Exodus is at least 7' 20") he struggles painfully to impose himself on the opposition, and is decidedly poor in the air. He should be out there 'cutting it rough', but instead just gambols about in a timid manner. The worst part of it is that Exodus isn't with us on a short one month loan deal, no such luck, we're stuck with him until the end of the seaon. Exodus, according to Gannon in his infinite wisdom, is here to improve the squad. Just how manifestly wrong can Gannon have got it?
The first 45 minutes of yesterdays draw were dismal. Visitors Northampton Town were the most fluent during the opening half without ever really threatening, we offered absolutely nothing until the stroke of half time, when James O'Shea managed to get a shot in.
The second half saw the immediate introduction of Anthony Griffith, coming on for Robert Taylor, who had had one of his 'quiet' games. Of course it was Exodus that we wanted left in the dressing room at half-time, and this fact was made abundantly clear when the substitution was announced. Our game picked up, and we began to look slightly more fluid, taking the game to Northampton.
We got our reward ten minutes into the second half when Tom Pope was upended in the penalty box courtesy of a rash and wholly unneccesary foul from the Cobblers right-back. Justin Richards cooly dispached the spot kick. But the lead lasted for a mere three minutes, Northampton broke down the left, and the cross was met unopposed by Leon Mckenzie - Lee Collins, John McCombe and Kris Taylor seemingly rooted to the spot in admiration.
On 65 minutes the game appeared to turn our way again with the dismisal of Ali Osman for a reckless challenge, which matched the one he made at Sixfields earlier in the season, and for which he also received a red card. He obviously holds a grudge against us.
On 70 minutes the biggest cheer of the day came when Gannon made a double substitution. Off came Exodus and James O'Shea, and on came Marc Richards and midfield maestro Gary Roberts, fresh from his sending off for violent conduct during a reserve game in midweek. The game was transformed. Richards, despite his six week lay-off through injury, looked sharp and Roberts gave us a 20 minute, Paul Scholes-esque, midfield masterclass. He was awesome, stroking forty yard pinpoint passes, bringing vision and creativity into a game devoid of any real imagination. We looked dangerous and had Northampton rocking, but ultimately to no avail as our visitors goal led a charmed life in the face of our late onslaught.
Why Roberts began on the bench and was only brought into battle with twenty minutes left is beyond me, but no doubt makes perfect sense to Gannon. Another positive was the return of Richards who makes us look far more potent up front. Bar the goal our defence was solid, and mention also must be given to the contribution of Doug Loft, who for the first 70 minutes was our only player who looked capable of creating anything remotely exciting.
Gannon needs to learn, and learn fast, who our best starting eleven are. Clearly Exodus Geoghan should be nowhere near it, Roberts should be the first name on the team sheet. It's just so f***ing obvious.
Photo: Action Images
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