On Saturday, I witnessed the Blackburn Rovers against Middlesbrough game via dodgy TV, Now and again the internet connection would drop off and I would lose the picture, but I needn’t have worried, what was on view I had seen many,many times,5 man midfield, last 3rd were powder puff, laboured and scrappy at times, only one effort on target in 90 odd minutes summed it up for me.
I am sure the 2000 plus traveling Middlesbrough supporter’s expected a wee bit more after last Fridays demolition of Doncaster, if I am honest the conditions played a part and a draw would have been a fair result.
It was interesting to read what caretaker manager Mark Venus had said after the game.”I dont know where we are, but I know for a fact, that we are not good enough to threaten the top end of the table.” It was refreshing to hear such honesty, but these comment must put himself the Chairman and Mogga in a bad light as they have all assembled the team.Would Venus have made such comments if he had been appointed manager? I doubt it.
For me it’s another indication that Mark wont be taking over the hot seat, of course I could be wrong.
When he was asked last week if he wanted the job, I was astonished when he said,he didn’t know.
It has similar traits of Sunderland’s Kevin Ball who was caretaker manager after Di Cannio’s departure from The stadium of Light. Like Venus when asked the obvious question, he was cagey and skirted around it.I dont see any benefits in avoiding the question.
Chairman Steve Gibson, has gone on record as saying, that he will take his time when appointing our new manager, and that’s his prerogative. But for me the quicker the decision is made the better it is for everyone concerned players, coaches, staff and fans.
As it stands at this minute the team is 4 points off the relegation zone and 8 points from the top 6,we have not won back to back games since the turn of the year.As it stands the dressing room will be divided, first team regulars will be disappointed that Mogga has gone, the players that havent been playing or have been out on loan, will be delighted.
Some will be looking at Venus and thinking I hope you are on your bike like your mate.
Everyone in that dressing room will no doubt be concerned, as to their future at the club as the new manager might not fancy them.
Whoever is appointed, I hope that their opening speech is a lot better than former Middlesbrough manager Lennie Lawrence. One of his opening lines was, im looking for new heroes and idols. He lost my respect instantly . I am not for one minute saying I was either but I had been loyal and successful along with players like Mowbray, Parkinson, Ripley etc.It was no surprise that the players mentioned were moved on sooner rather than later.
The experience, the quality and the stature of the newly appointed manager, for me will indicate what kind of budget we have and in what direction are we heading.
But whoever comes in has to come up with the ingredients to find the winning formula on a consistent basis and has to instil a physical and mental toughness throughout the squad that at this moment is clearly lacking.