When you play with two holding midfielders whose sole function is to stop the other team playing, they serve no purpose at all when you are behind. Trap really needs to pick the best players he has available, and not the same 11 every time.
He had plenty of chances in friendlies to give the likes of McCarthy, Gibson, Cunningham, Coleman, Fahey etc a real run out, but never does – only brings them on for five minutes or whatever. Then he throws out the excuse that they haven’t enough experience. Why’s that Trap?
This team is set up far too limited, long ball game aside, and just does not have the creativity with the likes of Whelan, Green, Andrews, Kilbane, McShane etc whenever they are in the team, because pure and simply they just aren’t good enough to play any other type of game.
If he continues with that sort of set up, we are accepting we are not good enough and our only chance of doing anything is stopping other teams trying to play. We even played that style against Andorra. The only thing in its favour is it probably is better suited to away games, where we can stifle the home teams and try and counter with quick balls up to the forwards. Although it would help if the midfielders followed up for the knock downs.
The game itself was a poor performance all round. McGeady is an easy target for the clichÃ© watching fans, but despite the one or two criticisms elswhere here, he was the only player who really tried to have a go. He took on a good few players and got crosses in, but to nobody as they are all sitting back. He also had a few shots, albeit not looking like scoring this time.
His style is always going to lose a few balls, but if you don’t want him playing what do you want – another Andrews on the wing? McGeady, Duff and or Lawrence/Hunt (when fit) are our only chance of trying something different because the rest of the team is set up purely to stop the other team and hope for a few chances from knock downs or set pieces.
One final thought. Doyle is a brilliant selfless worker up front. But it is really asking a lot to base the entire qualifying process on long balls to such a willing, but not that tall, striker.