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QPR exit Highway to Hell at junction 21 — Report
Sunday, 12th Mar 2023 20:33 by Clive Whittingham

For the first time in 13 games, the first time in ten home matches, and only the second time in 21 fixtures, QPR have a win — a gutsy, grimy, blood-and-thunder, desperately needed 1-0 against Watford at a febrile Loftus Road.

Choices are not a strong suit of our Queens Park Rangers. Ever see a blind man cross the road, trying to reach the other side?

Choosing the moment the Premier League TV money was about to explode first time around to sell our England international striker and replace him with a fat man in a Mark Hateley costume, for instance, is not a good a choice. Choosing to only offer Clive Wilson a one-year deal while Spurs are offering two — thick. Choosing not to buy the land behind the School End, forever locking us tight into our four acre spot, because you’re too busy plotting a new arena out near Heathrow, again, not smart. Choosing not to be part of the myriad development opportunities around one of the biggest shopping centres in Western Europe, 500 yards from your front door, a bit dim. Choosing Stewart Houston over Alan Curbishley, choosing Mike Sheron over Clive Mendonca, and watching Charlton go surging past us from a pit of obscurity. Not choosing Paulo Wanchope, just as you hadn’t chosen John Barnes, Rio Ferdinand, Stuart Pearce, Chris Mepham and many others besides. Choosing Armel Tchakounte, and Ugo Ukah, and Marc Nygaard. Choosing them over Gallen, and Bircham, and Furlong. Choosing to offer Patrick Agyemang four years at £12k a week when he came in looking for two at six. Choosing Jim Magilton, and then choosing to replace him with Paul Hart. Choosing millions for Jose Bosingwa, and Ji-Sung Park, while Jamal Lowe, and Albert Adomah are playing non-league at the end of the street. Choosing Mark Hughes, and Mike Rigg, and Kia Joorabchian, to replace Neil fucking Warnock. Choosing ‘Arry, choosing to keep ‘Arry after a relegation, choosing to stick with ‘Arry when he said he was plotting his golf club membership at nil nil, choosing to let him burn through your big second chance with his back three and bonus game nonsense, and then choosing to belatedly replace him with… Chris Ramsey. Choosing Jimmy Floyd-Hasselbaink, when Neil Warnock is in the building. Choosing Steve McClaren, because Tony likes him, just as you chose Loic Remy, because he was good at Fifa. Choosing Conor Washington, while Millwall choose Tom Bradshaw. Choosing analytics and data, five years after the team down the road you used to play in pre-season friendlies took ownership of it and started handing you your own arse. Choosing Jake Bidwell, as if that was some kind of gotcha back. Choosing a player development path, just as the arse fell out of the Championship transfer market. Choosing to gamble the club’s financial future on a promotion push, because Stefan Johansen had a good three months on loan.

Placed in a gameshow scenario and faced with a choice between gambling the meagre prizes already won for a month-long all-expenses-paid trip to the Maldives with Jennifer Lawrence, or walking away with nothing, QPR choose secret option three nobody even knew existed, and end up with a time-share in John Prescott’s lower colon. It’s just what we do.

It's certainly what we’ve been doing for the last year: choosing Andre Gray; choosing David Marshall and then Kieren Westwood; choosing Jeff Hendrick; choosing to let Mark Warburton go; choosing Mick Beale; choosing all the boys he used to read a bedtime story to represent the last of the petty cash; choosing to replace him with his mate Neil Critchley.

Football is a game of numbers, and QPR have been losing that numbers game consistently for more than 12 months. Prior to Saturday, they had lost 29 of their last 57 games played. They had won just one of their last 20 matches, their worst record since 1998 under the late and not so great Ray Harford. Saturday’s match with Watford risked equalling the club record of ten home games without a win. Everywhere you turn, on the field, on the league table, on the balance sheet, the numbers have been going against the R’s. From first, to twentieth, the worst home record apart from bottom-placed Wigan, the worst defence apart from the Latics and Reading, the highest number of goals conceded from set pieces, 27 goals conceded in the last 12 games, zero clean sheets, seven clean sheets in 37 games this season. A wage bill of £27m, relatively modest by Championship standards, manifestly excessive for the club’s income, leading to an FFP-troubling £24m annual loss. This now a club, in all respects, pissing into a furnace, and not with a particularly big dick either. A lone firefighter, trapped in a burning warehouse, spraying water forlornly into the air, watching all the smoke head the wrong way, flashover seemingly imminent. They chose 3-5-2, 4-3-3, 4-2-3-1, 4-4-2. They’ve chosen from 42 different players in 12 months, including five separate goalkeepers, almost a new player for every game played. They chose four different managers. Searching, fumbling around in the darkness, for a choice, or a number, that works for them, and coming up with oh so many 3-1 defeats to Rotherham.

On Saturday, they chose chaos. And it worked.

Rangers had scored just six goals in the last eight, and not managed more than one in a game in nine attempts — the 2-2 at Reading the only time they’ve scored more than one goal in a match in this sequence of 20. Three shots on target in South Yorkshire last weekend wasn’t a lot to write home about — one of them a penalty of course — but it did at least halt a run of 1, 2, 2, 2, 4, 4, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2 from the prior 12. In a 3-0 defeat at Hull recently QPR had a starting forward, Albert Adomah, who touched the ball ten times in the entire match. Iroegbunam, playing central midfield, touched it 27 times, and gave it away in a third of those. Striker Tyler Roberts managed 37 feels of the ball, fewer than the Hull goalkeeper Matt Ingram. Rob Dickie meanwhile, posted 82. In total, 200 touches for our two centre backs that day - their opposite numbers in Hull’s side did little more than half that. Your goalkeeper — your fucking goalkeeper - had more of the ball than every player in the team bar the two centre backs and the right full back. You don’t win football games with these numbers. QPR, for sometime, under several managers, have been playing dull, unwatchable football, in the wrong part of the field, with players not good enough to do it.

It was time to play forwards. There were smart additions and tweaks to the system: the back four was finally jettisoned; Dickie and Dunne getting the extra help/babysitter they desperately needed in a third centre back (Sam Field was immaculate out of position); the wing backs were restored, moving inexperienced duo Aaron Drewe and Osman Kakay out of harm’s way, into the more attacking positions that play to their strengths; Dozzell was charged with limiting Pedro’s influence, a specific detail for a player all too prone to drifting through games waiting for the inspiration for his next water colour on canvass. But there were also some blunt instruments. Lyndon Dykes, putting several others to shame, on a ventilator with pneumonia a month back, stuck his hand up for a start — yes fucking please Tartan McPartick, I’ll take ten of you, what you saying Tyler Roberts? Chris Martin captained the side and formed part of a heavy-weight, physically awkward, horrible front three to play against. The intention was clear right from the off, and confirmed with a final completed passing total of just 124 — little more than one a minute. Play time is over. We’re going that way. We’re going that way right now. We’re going to be after you. And you’re going to have to live with us. Richmond Oiler ball. In their half of the court. A season high 17,247 were present for the lecture, and they loved every minute of it.

In many ways Watford, who now represent a full 14% of the points we’ve posted this season, were a perfect opponent. Themselves onto a third manager of the season as is customary in their parts, with Chris Wilder replacing Slaven Bilic in the build up to the game. They brought a ridiculous array of talent for the level to the table — Ismaila Sarr to run at Osman Kakay, Joao Pedro to attack Andre Dozzell, Keinan Davis up against Rob Dickie who last week had made like Jordan Hugill look like one of the five richest kings of Europe. QPR’s midfield Premier League loan was 19-year-old Tim Iroegbunam, and he played against Leicester’s Hamza Choudhury, who has the thick end of 60 appearances for the former Premier League champions including a dozen in Europe. Still, difficult to get much elevation in your new manager bounce when there’s a new boss once a fortnight. The Hornets were the epitome of ‘all the gear and no idea’. Much like a lot of the teams Harry Redknapp fielded here, they were a disinterested rabble, there to be got at.

Three minutes in, Chris Martin smashed visiting goalkeeper Dananananana Bachmann. He didn’t like it. Didn’t like it at all. Referee James Linington came over to offer some conciliatory words. Martin left the mediation early to start a fight with somebody else. Good, frankly. About time. I am so sick of QPR being a soft touch, being easy to play against, bullied by opponents, letting gobshites follow the referee around and control the game while we just sit there and take it. Nice boys no longer, and long before time. Osman Kakay got going down the left, switched feet beautifully, and slung over a great cross. It was the best thing we’d done in three months, and the crowd was into it right away. Come on you R’s.

Not you Rob. Dickie’s 30 yard back pass was played ten times as hard and 50 feet wider than it really needed to be, retrieved from a catastrophic own goal by Seny Dieng’s poise and calmness. The two touched hands in solidarity a moment later. It was, nevertheless, the only pass back to the keeper I can recall all afternoon. Dickie to Dunne to Dieng to Dickie to Dunne to Dieng to Dunne to Dickie to Dunne to Dieng to Dunne to Dickie no more. An immediate moratorium on such pisballing. Stop waving it around, start fucking. We’re going that way. We’re going that way early, long, purposefully, and we’ll muscle up, muck in and play at that end of the field. Whether it will persist, whether it will mature as technicians like Ilias Chair and Chris Willock return, whether it will work, and how long the Loftus Road faithful will stick with it if it doesn’t, is stuff for future match previews. For now it was a welcome departure. Exhilarating nourishment for a crowd fed on so much mediocre gruel for so long. QPR have been beaten on their own ground 3-0 by Burnley, Luton and Sunderland recently. It’s not been so much inviting that bloke you hate from work around for dinner and watching him drink your favourite wine, as inviting that bloke you hate from work around for dinner and watching him fuck your wife. It had to stop. Somebody had to put a stop to it. Gareth Ainsworth wore a belt buckle they could see from the International Space Station.

In that spirit, a central midfielder crossed the halfway line with the ball and joined the attack. Print it out for Joan. Tim Iroegbunam, for it was he, looked first for Jamal Lowe, but carried on again to join the forwards in their pursuit, so when Watford’s sloppy interception broke back into open field he was able to beast Choudhury, accelerate into the box, reverse a shot across the goal, and find the far corner of the net. And is that the Titanic music I can hear? Osman Kakay, nursing a chub-on, roamed in from the left and went searching for the top corner from the edge of the box. Steady on vicar, we’ve all had a drink.

Dickie’s desperate trip on Pedro right on the border of the penalty box set Imran Louza up with a free kick so beautifully placed the public address system crackled into gear before he’d taken it, ready to announce him as the scorer of the equaliser. The Hornets placed three men in the wall to create a gap for the shot, and he belted it straight into their shins, which rather summed the visitors up. “You’re getting sacked in the morning” rolled down from the School End as the sun began to set on Chris Wilder’s third day in the job.

The difference in QPR was staggering. Front foot, snapping in, effort, bodies on the line. Effort. Actual effort. The crowd bought in immediately, and stayed at the table all night. A Watford break on the stroke of half time could, and should, have been deliberately halted by Iroegbunam, but when he let the chance slip away there was still a cynical professional foul to come (little Suzy’s all grown up) — from Jamal Lowe, back defending his own box. Yellow card, obviously, but just look at that chalk to last week’s cheese, as Lowe runs half the length of the pitch to do a job for the team. “I’m looking for buy in”, said Ainsworth before introducing a large gentleman in a grass skirt. Lowe kept his receipt.

Iroegbunam might have had a second, but his latest shot struck Chris Martin’s arse which, to be fair, is a difficult target to miss. Who the fuck that was in the Osman Kakay wig I don’t know, but I liked him a lot. Aaron Drewe, first night nerves well and truly out of the way, was inspired. A human cannon ball, flying into this and that, shirking nothing and keen to play, absolutely lovely to watch and a poster child for what’s the worst that can happen when we debate chucking a few kids into a team that’s won one game in half a season? More power, and appearances, to him — I got so much pleasure from watching him charge around here, like a wasp in the Watford kitchen. Pesky boy. Injured are you? Don’t fancy this one much? "Tightness"? Fine, not a problem, Aaron wants to play. Aaron. Wants. To. Play. More. More like this. More like him. A pure joy.

The second half was ridiculous. Ale Faurlin came on at half time and made everybody cry. Jamie Mackie and Shaun Derry were here with him, quaffing the table wine. Is that a feel-good factor returning? What’s he up to next week? Any room in the car for Blackpool? Amidst it, an announcement for anybody in the crowd qualified to fly a plane. Referee James Linington, the best referee in this league at the moment, has gone in the night and just been discovered by one of the maids. The second half will be refereed by his non-union Surrey-based equivalent Craig Hicks who looks, among other things, scared.

QPR set to work. The R’s were aided considerably by so many Watford attacks ending at the feet of Ken Sema, who steadfastly crossed each of those chances firmly into the stand on the far side of the ground, and the visitors fielding Mario Gaspar at full back, who it says here has three full caps for Spain but one can only surmise that he’s bought those off eBay. Rangers were also lucky a period of prolonged fucking about 20 minutes from time ending with a hooked cross and a huge back post pile-on over the top of Rob Dickie ended only in a weak header over the bar. But the game and street smarts, so completely absent from this group for so long and now apparently downloaded after a fortnight with Gareth and Dobbo, was something to behold. Every chance to slow the game down, disrupt it, delay it, niggle it was taken with glee. Chris Martin finished the day with a better fighting record than Audley Harrison. At one point the linesman on the Ellerslie Road side of the ground gave a throw in so egregiously the wrong way that he laughed, changed his mind, and hugged Jamal Lowe in front of the R Block. Choudhury bent down in the middle of the pitch and laid an egg. I honestly thought he was going to explode into a thousand pieces. QPR cannot afford players like that any more, so you going to try and play them at football, or be a bit more pragmatic? He should be controlling games at this level, but he’d been booked in first half stoppage time, spent the second half trying to referee, and suffered a complete headloss. Mission very much accomplished.

The whole thing dissolved, as it was always going to. QPR were so much better for Lyndon Dykes playing, and as happened here against Swansea when another 1-0 lead was squandered so much worse for him eventually succumbing and going off. Fair play to him, a stellar effort. More to the point though, you’ve replaced the Championship’s best official with the RefBot 2000. We’ve all been there, with the substitute teacher, rubbing our little hands together. Sun’s out, can we have this lesson out on the field sir? No, I don’t think that’s a good idea at all. Ok, well, we’ll see you out there anyway.

Aaron Drewe is injured. Or is he? Difficult to tell at this point because QPR had clearly and obviously adapted a policy of sitting down with injuries and cramps at every opportunity to further delay, decay and disrupt. Ladies and gentlemen, we’re now approaching Shithouse Central, please mind the gap between your morals and your desire. QPR FC, from the White City, etc. Drewe’s injury is a problem, because Andre Dozzell has already gone off a moment before, but Luke Amos wasn’t dressed and ready to replace him, much to his manager’s displeasure, so now QPR are playing with ten men anyway. Dunne tells Drewe he’s got to get up, Johansen tells Ainsworth he has to delay his subs, QPR have made two changes already and can only make further alterations in this final tranche. They settle on Drewe and… Martin. But wait, that means we’re playing with ten. Martin sits down. Kakay comes across to discuss. Ainsworth puts his hands on his head, he’s made a grave mistake. Watford have had enough, and take their throw in. Hicks allows it. Can’t say I blame him. So now we’ve got one player in the dressing room, one chatting to the manager, one sitting down, one injured, two who think they’re going off, two who think they’re coming on, and the game going on around them. All that hard work the writers of Last of the Summer Wine had to do to contrive a situation where a disparate group of idiots set off down a steep hill in a bath tub on wheels, and I can just sit here every week and report on this. Sam Field, wearing a colander and clutching a mop, seemed to be the brakeman. Sanka, let me kiss your lucky egg.

Pedro hits the deck, it looks a thick penalty, I would have wanted it. Referee says no. A gentleman enters the field from the away end requesting an urgent conversation about this decision. We play on, ten yards away, while a gang of stewards wrestle him to the floor, in the field of play, because it's that sort of day. Fights breaking out, Watford on Watford; visiting substitutes starting on people in the Paddocks; Choudhury mad as a bag of bees. The Hornets would finish without a significant shot on target all game, and Hoedt refused to shake Ainsworth’s hand at full time. Are we… the badees? The shithousee becomes the shithouser. Sinclair Armstrong - who’s on now apparently, for somebody, hi Sinclair - bursts through. His shot is saved with by Bachmann with his legs. Honestly, Loft End, last throes, Sinclair Armstrong, first goal for the club, 2-0. On the pitch. Never mind the stairs. On the fucking pitch. No excuse. Just imagine. Ten industrial-strength dehumidifiers in the R Block stat, enough cum to pebble dash a lighthouse. Not to be. A shame. Can’t have it all. Let’s get on with the quiz.

Seven minutes of added time — honestly we couldn’t have complained at twice that. There’s a throw given as a goal kick, the referee and lino belatedly communicate this and Watford have to come back; Choudhury will later be waiting for the referee at his home address; Armstrong has run off with the ball; the crowd sings and sways with each beat of the farce, come on you R’s, come on you R’s indeed; Andy Hillman, who you get to speak to when your Patreon experiences technical difficulties, has been sitting beside me throughout this in fairly stoic silence while I attempt to remove my seat from its moorings and beat somebody to death with it — he breaks into a laugh and says “this is absolutely mental”. Choose life, choose a job, choose a career, choose a family… choose chaos. If this is us, for now, I’m fine with it.

Watford introduce Britt Assombalonga, who makes Chris Martin look like an ultra-marathon runner. He fails to trouble the scorers. As do his team. It’s QPR’s first win in 14 attempts, first win in ten at home, and first clean sheet since Boxing Day. Sinclair Armstrong sinks to his knees. Ainsworth leaves his players to soak up the applause before going onto the field himself, when it would have been so easy to rush on and make it all about him and his first win. Silver Lining rings out for the first time since October 22, 140 days ago. So, that’s what this feels like?

Hot nonsense, loved every minute.

Links >>> Photo Gallery >>> Ratings and Reports >>> Message Board Match Thread

QPR: Dieng 6; Dickie 6, Dunne 6, Field 7; Drewe 7 (Amos 84, -), Dozzell 6 (Armstrong 84, -), Iroegbunam 6 (Johansen 71, 6), Kakay 7; Lowe 6, Dykes 7 (Adomah 57, 6), Martin 7

Subs not used: Archer, Richards, Gubbins

Goals: Iroegbunam 15 (unassisted)

Bookings: Lowe 44 (grown up stuff), Iroegbunam 61 (foul)

Watford: Bachmann 6; Porteous 6 (Asprilla 76, 6), Cathcart 6, Hoedt 5; Gaspar 4, Louza 5, Choudhury 5, Sema 5; Sarr 5 (Assombalonga 76 3), Davis 5, Pedro 6

Subs not used: Ngakia, Kona, Araujo, Hamer, Kabasele

Bookings: Choudhury 45+1 (head loss), Hoedt 90+6 (head loss)

QPR Star Man — Osman Kakay 7 The squad is built to play a back three. It gives the centre backs extra support, and moves the full backs out of harm’s way and into the more attacking positions in which they excel. Kakay, and Drewe, both exceptional here when we finally accept that. Sam Field’s stint as a makeshift third centre back absolutely worthy of note. Five sevens in the ratings this week, the first QPR players to get more than a six in the ratings since Reading on January 14.

First half referee — James Linington (Isle of Wight) 7 Best referee in the league.

Second half supply teacher — Craig Hicks (Surrey) 5 A jobbing lower league official, plunged into a first ever Championship match after five years in Leagues One and Two, and the kids tried every trick in the book. Just about kept his head above the waterline. Very difficult game to referee.

Attendance — 17,247 (3,000 Watford approx.) Gareth wants buy-in, there’s your buy-in. On this run of form, the biggest home gate of the season. Remarkable home support.

Some of the behaviour, alleged monkey chants from the club of John Barnes and Luther Blissett, fighting amongst themselves, flare throwing, coke shovelling and pitch invasions at the other end paint a picture of an increasingly unhappy club up the road.

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StanleyB added 20:50 - Mar 12
Great report as usual Clive - thank you!. And a gutsy team performance.

I can only count 5 ratings of 7 though.

Patrick added 21:39 - Mar 12
Clive you really deserved that. After all the misery pieces, an absolute chunk of rare steak to sink your teeth into. I don't know what GA has been putting in the tea but he's turned a group of nice well mannered young boys into a pack of rabid dogs. And to quote Clive Revel Horwood, "I absolutely loved it, darling."

Philothesuperhoop added 21:40 - Mar 12
“John Prescott’s lower colon” had me laughing out loud early!
Superb report - thanks Clive.
What a magnificent day that was and what superb support. I posted on the message board about the crowd earlier yesterday as I was amazed the number of people going after one win in 20. It seems that Gareth A has just got it and already really captured the place.
Aaron Drewe was simply magnificent, I loved watching him grow up.
And how good is Sam Field.
I don’t care about the brand of football being more basic at the moment if it is this much fun!
Now just a very tricky week to navigate because if we lose to both Blackpool and Birmingham then we stuck six points into the mix beneath us. However in GA I now have great faith…and so that won’t happen.
Life is bloody marvellous again.

wokingrs added 22:24 - Mar 12
Been waiting for that all evening! Absolutely loved yesterday. Watford away and now home my favorite games of the season!

LongsufferingR added 22:43 - Mar 12
Tremendous. The style of that report exactly matched the style of the game. Breathless, edge of the seat stuff with the happy ending we've all craved.

Andybrat added 23:27 - Mar 12
Class Clive, makes you wonder how that effects those with the knocks. Be good to see Paal and Laird on the bench when fit, sends a message. You are right we have all been calling for 3/5 at the back, shows Sam Field is almost our most important “ team” player. Stupid thread btw. Andy

daveinmelbourne added 00:07 - Mar 13
Thank you mate, you can literally hear the relief in your words! How you’ve carried on watching that slop the last few months, jump on a train and then can actually be arsed to write about it, huge kudos to you.
Ainsworth and Dobson get us, well of course they do, they get what is required, what we all want to see above all else is effort and desire, we’re a proud working class football club that doesn’t suffer fools gladly. Love it.

rkk76 added 00:50 - Mar 13
No Sinclair on the ratings or subs, i am positive he was there..... Should have scored but took his chance ok i thought, head down and hit it. I much prefer that from him than trying a pass or anything too cute.

Northolt_Rs added 02:45 - Mar 13
This write up is like the game….fücking chaos….and it’s fücking beautiful. Savoured every word like I savoured every minute of THAT game. Hi-Ho-Silver Lining. Bravo.

stneotsbloke added 07:28 - Mar 13
We've got our Rangers back.
So pleased for Drewe and to see Kakay playing so well is really satisfying. What a great performance from Sam Field.
A pal of mine's father died last month. His name was William Temby, he scored for the R's when we beat Watford 4-2 at Vicarage Road on 23rd February 1957. He'd have enjoyed this game.

thehat added 10:30 - Mar 13

Top Draw Clive - Another masterpiece to go with all the other masterpieces. We all said in the car on the way home we couldn't wait to read your report and as always it was bang on the money. Wonderful to relive the game through your writing.

We also gave Kakay man of the match and no surprise really as it's what Garath does - he manages to get players playing to levels they never thought they had in them it's why Wycombe have been so successful.

We were everything we haven't been in recent weeks - Playing forwards with high tempo, aggressive football, and winning all the battles and duels. The change to a back 3 with wing backs and having Dykes back also made a huge difference.

Give me this football over the tippy tappy shit we have been served up in recent weeks anyday.

Chris Wilder called it right - QPR wanted it more than us and it's a long time since we have heard that from an opposition manager.

Now if we can avoid defeat in the next 2 games the picture will be a lot healthier going into the international break.

Safe travels to you and the fans making the long trek to the North West tomorrow night.

You R'rrs

Marshy added 12:59 - Mar 13
What a difference. Some great performances out there. I also had Ossie as man of the match. Gareth is a breath of fresh air. He knows how to get a win. It may not always be pretty, but I don’t care. If the opposing team are attacking your goal, don’t try passing out from the back, our players aren’t good enough for that. Just boot the ball clear- simples. Nearly every team we have played this season have been the masters of shithousery, well we showed we can mix it with the best. Gareth has got the winning mentality when it comes to management, and had this when he was a player. I think this has at last been a very shrewd appointment. Just compare Critchley interviews with Ainsworth - who would you want to play for?

TacticalR added 13:36 - Mar 13
Thanks for your report.

Yes, we've made some terrible choices over the years, and this season it felt like the chickens were coming home to roost.

With so many players unavailable I feel the key was Ainsworth ignoring Beale's cohort (except for Tim), and bringing the best out of the rest of players (including Lowe and Martin who were brought in by Critchley). It's like there's a new force within the team. As Ainsworth said in his interview after the game: we looked solid.

Suddenly a lot of our players look a lot more comfortable, especially Dunne and Dickie. Tim played a bit further forward. Kakay looked a new man. Drewe seemed fine against much taller players. Even Dozzell tried to throw himself into the game. If Ainsworth can get a tune of Dozzell, anything is possible.

In retrospect we can say that Watford were an ideal opponent (although few thought that before the game) ex-Premier League club full of players that haven't adjusted to the division, so I am not too sure how much we can read into one game. But the feeling of relief is enormous.

THEBUSH added 13:42 - Mar 13
Great piece of writing loved it, even agreed with it all.

oakskull added 15:19 - Mar 13
I don't particularly enjoy watching a "passing team" complete less than half of their passes, and am here encoraged to accept that as a necessity to avoid supporting a club that has passed. Sigh, is that really so? Our creativity is truly shot with Willoch and Chair out of the team. When they come back, I hope we can revert to something more akin to whom we are. And there's always next season.

soops added 16:07 - Mar 13
Love it! "Are we… the badees?" 🤣
It's like reading a classic book that you love, and want to read again - but the great thing is it only takes 5 minutes to read it again!

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