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20/21 Matchday Thread

That Fat Centre Half

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I don't really agree with this. Yes, there are some referees in the level below who weren't up to standard, but I would argue the standard was better generally in the Conference than those on the National List. The reason, in my opinion, is that those referees are up and coming whereas many on the NL seem to have a job for life and there isn't enough churn.

In the Conference, we had a number of referees who are now operating in SG1 and SG2 - the game that ended our 27 game unbeaten run in our promotion season was referred by Chris Kavanagh, who in my opinion will become #2 behind Oliver eventually. We also had David Coote, Tim Robinson, Tony Harrington, Jeremy Simpson (ref in that PO final) - some of those already in SG1, the others will be in future.

Referees are under so much pressure and are criticised despite pundits needing a dozen angles to decide themselves. They get one look at it. I take a dimmer view of those officials acting as VAR who still don't make the correct decision.

Fair enough, but some of the refs you have listed I would say are the weakest of that up and coming group. Coote for instance is probably the worst VAR ref there is at the moment. And then there are all the refs who we had who havent been promoted up the leagues!
 
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Kenneth E End

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Fair enough, but some of the refs you have listed I would say are the weakest of that up and coming group. Coote for instance is probably the worst VAR ref there is at the moment. And then there are all the refs who we had who havent been promoted up the leagues!
Coote isn't having a good season at all. There are still officials that we had in the Conference still officiating there or have totally gone down the linesman route.
 

That Fat Centre Half

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Preston away for us today. Looking at Kens real table thread I dont think anyone is mathematically safe whilst also being out of the promotion running so an early clash in the run for the Mid Table trophy perhaps between 2 sides who barring something crazy wont be relegated and dont really have a shot at playoffs either.

We have had 2 pretty positive performances in a row, seem to be creating a lot more than we were a few months ago which is really good to see as it represents some real progression for us. Preston not in a great run, probably looking to just get through the remaining games ahead of a big summer with some important players to replace.

Not sure id change much from the lineup from the week, assuming no injury issues. I see Lockyer was in training yesterday but maybe too early for him to come back. Perhaps slight shape tweak and put Rea in midfield rather than centre half, seemed to be a few communications issues in the week early on that I think was a function of the 3 players not being used to playing with each other at centre half in that shape. Dont think Evans would pass up the opportunities we gave Biamou.

Hopefully we can bring some of the greater threat we have seen in the past 2 home games on the road with us, we havent scored too many away from the Kenny this season.
 

Kenneth E End

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Going by that table, Luton need to win all bar 1 of their remaining games to get into the play offs...
 

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Coote isn't having a good season at all. There are still officials that we had in the Conference still officiating there or have totally gone down the linesman route.
Wasn’t he the VAR ref for that Pickford/Van Dijk incident which is now referred to each time his name comes up ?

Probably hasn’t helped his confidence or morale.

Plus they seem to do 3/4 games a week now and some are in their late 40s/50s.

I watched some video on how refs get assessed and they get marked on every little decision so probably why they give cheap free kicks and are a bit inconsistent or clouded in their decision making.

Probably so worried they might miss a minor incident on the half line they lose focus for the big decisions.

I agree VAR seems to create more problems than solves them !

Again that seemed to stem from a demand for every decision to be right and checked.

Now we have goals overanalysed for a minor offside or handball which takes the sudden celebration away from scoring a goal.
 

That Fat Centre Half

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Unchanged from the Coventry game, Lockyer on the bench though which is good. Just in time to go and play for Wales though!
 

Super_horns

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Unchanged from the Coventry game, Lockyer on the bench though which is good. Just in time to go and play for Wales though!
The Paul Pogba of the Championship?

Just fit in time for the Internationals!

2 key players out for us and Birmingham have a new manager so a tricky one today.

And it's on Sky.

And Brentford drop points. too.
 
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Atavistic

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Brentford choking their automatic promotion chances late on for the second season running.

For us, we've surprisingly gone for the front three of Cantwell, Dowell and Buendia behind Pukki. An interesting choice that could prove to be slightly too aggressive, but if it works it'll be lovely to watch.
 

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You know it's good when we score from a corner and Gray finishes like a predator marksman!

Another solid performance without a couple of key players.

Came on Cardiff
 

Kenneth E End

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Luton win at Deepdale for the first time in 49 years.
 

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well that was dire.

Cov were the better side for 60 mins, we shaded it for 30, but really so what, neither side deserved the win, nor indeed to be in this division if such things were purely decided on the basis of an individual game, that was proper L2 football, let alone L1.

Draws do neither side any favours, and I expect our relegation to be more or less confirmed the week after Easter.

In fact the only entertaining and enjoyable thing about the entire game was to see all the Birmingham City cardboard cutout fans in the stands of St Andrews (which I didn't realise to be the case), I guess it makes sense that no-one can be arsed to take them down when the temporary tenants are playing, and put them back up again when BCFC have a game.
 

Craig

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After that loss I just can’t see past relegation.
 

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Well, the winning run comes to an end, but we remain unbeaten after today's 1-1 draw. More concerning is that we lost Giannoulis to concussion and Gibson to what could potentially be a long-term injury. If so, that would be an absolute disaster in terms of our prospects next season, as he's been pivotal in our defensive improvement and looks like he'd be good enough for the Prem. Keith Stroud is an absolutely terrible referee.

Much more interesting results elsewhere today.
 

Kenneth E End

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The penny has finally dropped then - we've had 40 shots in 2 games this week!
 

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These guys have every chance of going down, man for man these players are worse than our 2010-11 relegation season and the manager has no interest in being here. He should go this weekend but I'm still not convinced our decrepit owner will pay him off.

Treacy, Hume, Coutts, St Ledger & Billy Jones took us down last time, they're light years ahead of anyone we have currently. Keith Treacy back then was better than our current front 4 combined.
 

That Fat Centre Half

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Wasnt able to follow the game today but another 1-0 away win for us. Brilliant foundation has been built, and we seem to be adding something to our attack and at least starting to meld a strong defence and a bit more creativity together.
 

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Anyone who finishes below is this season should be ashamed of themselves. Coventry 0-0 Wycombe might be the lowest quality game the Championship has ever seen, like two League Two teams going at it.
 

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Alex Mowatt's red card for Barnsley was rescinded whilst Kyle McFadzean's for Coventry wasn't.

Seems to be a lot more red cards being overturned this season than normal, but I think the standard of refereeing is improving compared to 10 years ago.

That one surprised me (the Mowatt card).

I saw the game on iFollow, and whilst at the time I thought it was a yellow rather than a red, I thought that in cases which you could understand the decision being given (from a certain angle) then those cards never got rescinded.

Otherwise you're kind of opening the floodgates for people to chance an appeal in case they get lucky.
 

Kenneth E End

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We have now played 46 games since Nathan Jones came back during Lockdown 1 - that has returned 66 points. We have also scored 14 league goals away from home and picked up 33 points from them. His win record is also over 41%.

Say what you like about the guy, but those stats are outstanding for a #teamlikeluton.
 

That Fat Centre Half

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Anyone who finishes below is this season should be ashamed of themselves. Coventry 0-0 Wycombe might be the lowest quality game the Championship has ever seen, like two League Two teams going at it.

I see biamou managed to balls up another 1v1 chance, having messed up two of those against us in the week. Is there any reason he is playing over Walker/Godden?
 

CCFC_Charlie

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I see biamou managed to balls up another 1v1 chance, having messed up two of those against us in the week. Is there any reason he is playing over Walker/Godden?
Godden isn’t really fit, he has a recurring injury in his foot which he’s been rushed back from and he can’t play a full 90. Walker is a mystery, I don’t think Robins fancies him up front on his own but it tells you a lot about Robins’ mindset when we’re at home against the worst team in the league and he’s set up with three defensive midfielders and Biamou up top.
 

Kenneth E End

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Freddie Woodman made another fuck up for Swansea yesterday - I thought he was seen as the next big thing? Albeit he has the most clean sheets in the division this season.

I know we slated Sluga at the start of last season, but he has to be amongst the top 6 keepers in the division at least. He hasn't made a mistake for over a year now. Everyone else seems to have made at least one mistake. Bentley can't get in at Bristol, Samba is making cock ups, Raya hasn't been fautless.

Begovic and Krul look in a league of their own. Bialkowski has been good at Millwall too.
 

That Fat Centre Half

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He was managed very poorly last season early on, chucked in when he was clearly not settled. He’s worked it out and is a consistent performer now, but the fact he’s our most expensive player will always stick in my throat a bit, not that he can help that obviously, just think we could similar performance from a cheaper player.

Cannot find it now but one of those analytics types did a big long Twitter thread about championship keepers in various categories, Sluga was pretty much slap bang in the middle of the pack in just about every single category, and slightly below average in terms of his kicking and distribution. Basically saves the ones he should, let’s in the ones he isn’t expected to.

Begovic and Krul were comfortably the best in the division unsurprisingly. Along with the ones you’ve mentioned there, Raya, Woodman etc Rafael at Reading was also up there in the best of the rest type category. This was a few weeks ago so woodman might be a bit below now.
 

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Sluga has done very well but he scares me. He gives me the willies more than any defender with the ball at his feet. His passing a vision of pass is average/poor, but i dont think the central midfield make enough runs or movement into space for him so he can pass theu and often only had sideways options. He has recently started to come for more crosses too rather than stick on his line. Hes done that very well too as with his suze he has that attribute.

In short he has had a very good season, made few mistakes but few spectacular saves as TFCH states and has improved dramatically. Mote than capable but not someone we will likely ship on for a profit.

I fear hes a confidence player and has a horror run in him. But I see Monsters under the bed too.
 

BelizeHatter

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Kal Naismith. Man mountain at the back. Defender of the calendar year for me. Missing Bradley and Lockyer for an extended spell, who had been excellent, wed not be where we are without him. Hes really stepped in and up having had everyone wondering why we signed him at first
 

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