Don't let the late drama fool you: a Dunfermline goal with 3 minutes of normal time remaining was followed by a last gasp Morton equaliser in added on time. However, for almost all of this match, the football on display from both sides was awful. At times it verged on comically bad, except no one was laughing. We have been subjected to terrible games at Cappielow in the past couple of years, the quality of play matching the stadium, which is a dump. Crammed into the doll's house size main stand, this was a miserable experience and the blame, I am sad to say, sits at the door of our manager.
For months I have defended Stevie Crawford. Last season he inherited an unmotivated squad from Allan Johnston. This summer, a complete rebuild, focusing on youth, gave fresh hope. We knew there would be inconsistency. I have written the same words over and over again on this site since July. Patience is required, there will be bumps in the road. Good performances have been followed by struggles, but we can live with that. However, there are growing signs that there is no overall plan: formations change, players who start brightly go off form as the weeks go on. Meanwhile, the manager seems out of his depth. It pains me to say that. His post match comments are now in the realms of the bizarre, as Captain Mainwaring once said. He is naturally trying to stay positive but there can be no fooling the people who sit through garbage like yesterday. Again, I get no pleasure from writing those words.
The first half was enough to get football stopped. The second half, with Dunfermline still persisting with the one up front tactic that never works, lit up briefly after Pars sub Andy Ryan came on, and the formation was changed to 4-4-2: Ryan's pass to Kevin Nisbet should have been buried, and then soon after Nisbet's shot was parried by Morton keeper Sam Ramsbottom straight to the waiting Ryan, who scored from close range. This should have been the approach from the start of the game - and not trying to eke out a draw against poor opponents. Where is the fire, the heart, the will to win? And I mean that literally - to win?! Not to draw! Or avoid just defeat!
I am aware some readers will disagree with my opinions. Please be aware that I have defended the manager for months. This is not a knee jerk reaction. I just don't see what he is trying to achieve with the squad that he has built. They are playing well within themselves. We have seen that they can be much, much better than this.
The late equaliser, after Morton had a goal disallowed prior to Ryan's opener, was a sickener. Referee Beaton seemed to find added on time from nowhere. A win would have been a case of let's get out of this hovel with the points. It would not - or should not - have masked the dreadful football on display.
Prove me wrong, Stevie!
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