Barnsley 2 – 2 Bristol City
By Red Army
October 18 2020
Barnsley and Bristol City shared yet another 2 – 2 draw at Oakwell, The fifth such score in a row when the reds have hosted this fixture.
Woodrow held his nerve well with the penalty and fired it in with the last kick of the game to earn the reds a draw that was probably deserved overall.
First of all I would like to wish Sollbauer a full recovery and hopefully it is nothing too serious and he is back in action very soon.
As for the game overall, I would say it was a slightly improved performance on what we have seen so far this season and I think that the main reason for that was simply playing players in their proper positions. The formation and tactics weren’t changed a great deal if at all but where people played was.
Who would have thought Williams would look so much better in his natural position as a right wing back rather than left wing back or one of three centre halves? Just one example but I could go on.
Woodrow, still not at his best, but looked far more comfortable up front and hopefully the penalty will give him the confidence to go on a goal scoring run now.
The weak link in yesterday’s starting eleven for me was Thomas. He has no end product and his decision making is just as bad. He gets in some good positions but nothing ever comes of it. For me he has had enough opportunities now and it’s time to relegate to the bench at the very best.
Others are yet to find form this season but Thomas has never found any form and he looks to be a complete waste of the vast sum of money we spent on him.
When fit again I think styles would be perfect for the role behind the strikers now that we have so many midfielders. If Styles isn’t fit then I would change the make-up of the midfield slightly and go for three out and out central midfielders with no number ten.
That brings us on to the main discussion at the moment and that is who would you start in midfield?
I though Palmer looked good yesterday, in fact I think he has looked good every time he has played. He’s good on the ball, can get up and down and he puts a tackle in. I do think he tends to fade in the second half but that will be down to lack of matches at this level so far. How anyone could pick Ritzmaier above him is beyond me.
So on Palmer, does he deserve to keep his place on yesterday’s performance? Yes for me. But after only a handful of games has he done enough to be a guaranteed starter considering the others we have? No I don’t think he has.
Mowatt has started the season poorly for me. Many fans are now saying he shouldn’t be in the team and he is behind Palmer (handful of games), Kane and James (both probably not fit yet and fans haven’t seen much of Kane and haven’t seen James play for three years). Football is such a fickle thing.
Mowatt was our player of the year by a mile last season and if he can recreate that form this season then for me he would be the first name in that midfield by a mile. At the moment though perhaps he could be rested given the players we now have available.
Having said that, will James be anywhere near fit enough to start? Kane looked decent on the ball but also looks wat short of fitness so can either be picked from the start at the moment?
If Styles is still injured could you risk starting Palmer, Kane and James together when all are likely to struggle to do 90 minutes? Probably not.
Should Mowatt be guaranteed to start just because he was awesome last season, is club captain and can do 90 minutes? Also a no, current form has to be taken in to consideration.
Rotation might be a way of keeping them all fit and fresh and Mowatt’s recent form may be due to burn out with the amount of minutes he played last season and the effort he put in to those minutes.
Whatever happens, it is good to have competition for places and it will be fascinating to see what happens.
Unfortunately it seems to be the only position where we have genuine competition for places. I am however still hopeful we could bring in a free agent striker after seeing some of the names that are still without a club.