Mike's Moan: The Strikers Need To Step Up
Updated Wednesday, 5th September 2007
Yet again we played well against Hearts, but didn't get the goals our build up play deserved. With five games gone in the season this is becoming a worrying trend, so our strikers need to step up to the plate and prove that they can fire in the goals to keep us at the right end of the league.
Yet again Hearts proved to be a bogey team. It doesn't seem to matter how we play against them, we still lose 2-0. The team as a whole played well again on Monday night but our strikers need to start taking their chances or the points will dry up. We now have a difficult run of games, starting with
Clarkson played well against Hearts but yet again proved he is not a goal scorer. He has to play wide as part of a front three, where he can be a nuisance, run at defenders and create. He will score the odd goal but that is not what his strength is and basically not why he is the team. It's Porter and McCormack who need to start finding the back of the net more, as both have the ability to score on a regular basis.
McCormack is a tad greedy at times but he has the desire to score and the arrogance that top players need. He will always take the shot on if he finds himself around the goal and I don't think we want to change that. I also believe we want to encourage him to run with the ball, so it may look greedy, but at least he is taking responsibility.
Chris Porter is confusing, one moment he looks great the next he falls over the ball but we definitely look like a better team when he is playing. We need to stick him up front as the target man with Rossco and Clarkie playing wide just behind him. We have to encourage them both to stay wide (like Clarkie and McGarry did in the St Mirren game) so we can stretch teams with their pace. If we play like this the goals will come and we will win more games than we lose.
In midfield Stephen Hughes looked good on his debut and Lasley put in another good show (taking him off was a mad substitution as we fell out the game because of it). It wasn't O'Donnell's best game but he still put in a good shift, although looked slow at times. This is definitely our best midfield three in terms of skill, but there is a lack of pace and a lack of a left foot - could Fitz come in and fill the breach (not on this season's showing but he is still young and probably deserves another chance).
As for the defence, I thought it was a bad day at the office. Buzz didn't fill me with confidence,
I would rest Reynolds against Aberdeen or give him another shot at left back - he looked poor there against Raith but has all the attributes to be a good LB but just needs games in that position to get used to it again.
We had a generous run of games to start the season, and we did fairly well in them. It is now the really hard work has to start, as we need to believe we can compete with the
MM 's Team for Pittodrie:
G. Smith (not filling me with confidence)
P. Quinn (impressed with his attacking play)
M. Reynolds (has all the attributes to be superb in this position)
B. McLean (for me our best central defender - needs to play)
S. Craigan (can be frustrating , but steady so needs to play)
K. Lasley (most important man in the team for me)
S. Hughes (good start, will improve)
P. O'Donnell or M. Fitzpatrick (I am torn between the two but prob uncle Phil)
D. Clarkson (needs to stay wide more)
R. McCormack (also needs to stay wide more)
C. Porter (play him right up the middle as a target man, we play much better when he is in the team)