Sunday, February 21, 2016

I just don't think I understand (Paul Lambert)

Small consolations first. I've been lucky enough to have seen Cristiano Ronaldo, Carlos Tevez, David Silva, Fernando Torres, Thierry Henry and Gareth Bale play against Rovers at Ewood Park. I can today add Dmitri Payet to that list. He is absolute class and we witnessed him at his peak today.

And in all the time I've been going regularly to Ewood Park since 1977 I've seen Rovers stick 5, 6 and 7 past teams, including West Ham. I've also been a consistent away follower and have seen us get tonked by 5, 6 and, just once, by 7 goals to 1. I can take it.

But today was a first because I've never seen Rovers ship 5 at home before. It's happened in my lifetime, but I wasn't there to see it. Even when we were destroyed by rampant Arsenal we at least had the guile to shut up shop and limit the damage. 

I didn't think we could have matched West Ham today when I saw the 4-5-Chris Brown formation. A lone forward who has never scored for us and a midfield with Chris Taylor and Hope Akpan in it. Yet it was a very enjoyable opening 20 minutes.

After that, honestly, we were taught a lesson in football and reminded how big that gulf is between the side we had out and theirs. This is the mystery of Paul Lambert. Why rest three Premiership quality players? Gomez, Graham and Hanley could have made a difference today. Two of them are his signings so he can't complain about the dross he's saddled with. 

Speaking of which, I quite like Chris Brown and Chris Taylor, but they do rather represent the depths to which we've fallen. Brown gives all, but that's not much. Taylor runs about a lot and get stuck in too, but he showed how useful that isn't today when he got himself sent off. 

In the 1999-2000 season Graeme Souness took over, was underwhelming, we finished mid-table. It was always about building for the next campaign. I would like to think we're in a similar place now, but to be honest I don't think Lambert knows what to do in the flurry of games coming thick and fast.

No, this was another rotten day to be a Blackburn Rovers fan.

It has been pointed out that Danny Graham was cup tied, though Tony Watt wasn't.

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