Could and Should Have Won

Match report by RUNNING MONKEY at the Globe Arena

Morecambe 1 Pools 1 (League 2) Saturday April 8th 2017

As you all know, I am not a travelling man. In some quarters this makes me not a proper Poolie, but I won’t dwell on that. Well this week I decided to buy a ticket for the game at Morecambe. First reason was I had never been to or through or even close to Morecambe. Well, maybe once when I went to Blackpool. So I took the opportunity of a free ride out and the chance of a decent game. It was a glorious sunny day for a trip to the seaside, which I never actually saw as we never got near the beach. 

After a late start we made good time and arrived at the venue in just over two hours. The Globe Arena looks impressive from the outside with what looks like a new main stand. Inside we had what would be equivalent to our own Town End stand but only half the size, The other end looked to be about the same size and the stand opposite the main stand reminded me of the north side of Bedford Terrace. One comment I heard was "this stadium will go down well in the Conference".

The walk to the toilets behind the stand was amazing. With there being less than five hundred Poolies in this particular stand and a good helping spread across one corner of the main stand,  the facilities in this end looked a little congested. Those wanting any food or drink had to queue along this tight corridor where you could barely walk two abreast behind the stand, and sadly for some, before they got to the head of the queue the ale was sold out.

As I walked along the back looking for a toilet I saw two lads coming out so I popped in and there was a row of cubicles, and no urinals. I took the first one, did the business and walked up to the sinks to wash my hands. To my surprise there were three ladies washing their hands and one using the drier. Now I know it is time to retire when I start using the ladies toilet at a game - there IS a problem. I walked along this corridor that was heaving and in a little recess there was a Poolie choir giving a fine harmonious rendition of "Give Me the Moonlight". They must have been the lucky lads that were first in the queue.

After a brisk start Pools settled first in the game and were pressing the home side but we kept breaking down in front of their goal and chances were being squandered. Amond was the first with a real chance but the keeper came and smothered the ball. Pools kept up the pressure, but again we lacked the cut-throat mentality to hammer teams when we can. They were there for the taking and if we had just applied ourselves and been just a tad more patient we could have walloped this side, who looked very ordinary.

For me there were only a couple of their players in the starting line up that we had to fear, one was Ellison who is tall and rangy, difficult to handle and wins a lot of headers. The other was their no 7 who I think was Evans, who made them tick. The lad up front who I think was Mullin, was just a mauler, more of a nuisance than a a real threat.

Oates always gives his all in a game but his luck was not there today as he hit the side netting at least three times under pressure but he battled hard and looked tired in the second half.
"We put a lot of pressure on ourselves as we had no one prepared to take the ball and hold it to settle the lads down"

A great move started with Thomas on a run, who linked with Amond, who set up Featherstone, who smashed his ball over the bar. Walker also tried a shot from a free kick awarded to Thomas, who had been floored, but his shot was cleared to Thomas who hit his shot straight at the keeper. Pools were pressing and both Harrison and Oates went close but it was such a crowded area that they had difficulty getting clean shots on goal.

The goal came from a great move instigated by Woods who had had a quiet game. He linked with Alessandra and with good movement by him in the box, keeping the ball close, he set up Amond who slipped the ball past the Morecambe keeper for a well deserved goal.

Pools had steadied in the first half and looked to be the more likely side and the goal just before the break should have settled them as they looked to be in control. The second half sadly turned out to be another game that we looked like throwing away as they battered us from the start, Fryer blocked so many shots that I lost count, and Pools players once again started shifting the ball off too quickly and not making their passes.

We put a lot of pressure on ourselves as we had no one prepared to take the ball and hold it to settle the lads down; it was all getting a bit frantic and it seemed to be contagious.Some poor decisions on the ball like half-hearted back passes and poor distribution meant we were chasing the game and getting very little ball. We were just getting the odd break and spent a lot of time in our own box just shoving the ball away which kept coming back.

The pressure from the home team finally paid of as they took a corner that was blocked then at least two players tried to clear the ball before The Mauler scrambled the ball in from close range.

Pools had to dig deep to save this point and we had a fight on our hands as they brought on a couple of lively subs who seemed to have the run of the Park. They kept turning us and forcing Fryer into last-ditch saves or making a block as we really did look visibly tired late in the second half and were just making the odd break into their half.

Featherstone had a golden chance right in front of the Pools fans to give us a win but he once again refused to shoot when all he had to do was toe poke it past the keeper. He fluffed it and their keeper smothered the ball before Amond got to it.

We did have a penalty shout late in the game, in fact two, and the first one looked definite but we never get those do we?

All in all a game we could have won slips away again and we start looking over our shoulders as the games run out.