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Hank Scorpio

The New Raith Rovers Thread

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I never want to see the letters I C or T again.

That was fucking murder.

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7 minutes ago, Hank Scorpio said:

I must’ve missed the whole Duku Twitter thing. What was said?

Basically some folk said he must have had side affects from COVID. He said he was fully fit. Then someone said he'd signed a pre-contract elsewhere which he denies. But he's fallen into the habit of searching his own name and I suspect a few folk have clocked it. In the last few games there's been a few folk commenting on his attitude. Wouldn't surprise me if they're not far off the mark given that he's featured so rarely recently. 

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9 minutes ago, Broken Algorithms said:

Basically some folk said he must have had side affects from COVID. He said he was fully fit. Then someone said he'd signed a pre-contract elsewhere which he denies. But he's fallen into the habit of searching his own name and I suspect a few folk have clocked it. In the last few games there's been a few folk commenting on his attitude. Wouldn't surprise me if they're not far off the mark given that he's featured so rarely recently. 

He really didn’t look pleased at coming on late in the game on Friday there. There must be something going on that we’re not aware of. 

Only 9 points between us & Arbroath.  Anyone else starting to have a sinking feeling?

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18 minutes ago, Broken Algorithms said:

Utterly rotten tonight again. For years we've sat each Summer and said "surely Davidson will be gone" and he's offered a new deal and every single season he's back to act as a liability. He's our oldest player other than David McGurn (a third choice goalkeeper who is more of a coach) and at 37 he's had a longer career than most to know you can't do what he did tonight. For all he's chipped in with a few goals this term I refuse to believe that any other centre half couldn't have added the same. At the moment, as soon as Nando is back he should be lightyears ahead in the pecking order. The big man gets slaughtered but he's done very little wrong compared to Davidson. 

Caley created a few really good chances and probably should have had a couple more but when you play for 80 minutes with ten minutes you can't help but think we did them a huge favour by getting such a stupid sending off. It was a well taken finish from a long punt up the pitch but it was well deserved. 

At the moment, we're in a position where we need to try something new. The 4-2-3-1 has had the arse collapse out of it. As mentioned, Armstrong looks well off the pace at the moment. I'd be delighted if we focused our squad around Vaughan, Kennedy, Matthews and Hendry. Our back line should be the one which ended the game tonight week in week out. There's clearly a reason that Manny Duku hasn't featured much now: he's claimed on twitter he is completely fit but based off what's been doing the rounds his head got turned in January and we must have kicked back an offer. I'd be surprised if any team is looking at him if he's chucked in the towel. While this is all speculation, if you chuck it half way through a season you're only going to be fucking things up for yourself. It's a vicious circle as the fans will see the lack of any effort and slaughter the guy who in turn won't bother his arse. Timmy Abraham isn't even in the picture and frankly looked woefully out of his depth in the time he has played, spending far too much time moaning at the referees. Ugwu didn't have a sniff tonight but in general has been poor aside from that first half against Hearts. 

Really hard to see where we go from here. For all Kennedy did well in his first few games, I'd still rather that we had Ethan Ross who had an element of surprise to him. A thoroughly underwhelming evening and while it's obviously still raw, you can't help but feel frustrated. 

On the whole, excepting Davo, the back line played reasonably solid. The midfield showed little ambition and grit, and Hendry has turned into a DM rather than a creative CM. Our attacking play, absent Kennedy, is abysmal.

We need a shakeup in the middle and front:

Hendry, must play more forward and use his vision as he did earlier this season.

Spencer looks a bit lost, Matthews is normally the grittier of the two and needs to play that way. Tait injects some spine in the middle, but is prone to draw cards, which is mostly offset by his push forward. King looked better suited to Hendry’s DM role in his brief appearance, which might allow Hendry to venture forward more. Arnott and Coulson are unknowns and likely unsuitable right now.

Duku is out of favor, we’ll assume there is a reason why, but he hasn’t looked threatening since January. Ugwu has failed to impress, and Gullan doesn’t seem on right now either. Kennedy is our sole real “threat” right now, and he looked tired, and frustrated having been doubled out of the last few games. Abraham is raw and physical, but showed some linkup with Kennedy, so would be best with Kennedy playing wide. Kennedy right now looks like he needs a game or two off. Armstrong has lost the plot...which leave Vaughan, Smith and Mahady...and Mahady isn’t going to start.
 

Given all that, the defense sets itself: JMac  Tumilty/Musonda/Bene/KMac (God help us if Tumilty is hurt...and Mendy must start before Davo after this).

The next question is where to place attackers, and one forward and two wingers doesn’t work with Duku or Ugwu, so we need to play two up top or a striker/secondary striker diamond with wingers. I think Vaughan and Gullan (or Smith) should be considered, resting Armstrong and Kennedy versus Ayr. So we have a 4-?-2 established, but what do we do?

How about 4-1-3-2 with King deep to move Hendry forward and Tait and Matthews flanking? The big problem there is Tait and Matthews both fit naturally on the right side, so either we move one to the left for a match or have to use Spencer or someone like Coulson. King isn’t a creative driver, but seems perfectly capable of helping the connection between the backs and middle, and aiding the breakout passing game JMcG loves so much. King’s somewhat ponderous nature would be an issue if Davo were also playing deep, but with Frankie and Bene, it should work.

Everyone says we should start our strongest team, but I’m no longer sure we really know what that is. What seems certainly true is JMcG has not adapted his strategy to his current team performance, and that has to change.

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The more I think about it, the more I’m coming round to the idea of a 4-1-2-1-2 (midfield diamond in more straightforward terms). We have been too rigid in recent games. As discussed, the full backs are our sole creative threat. An important part of our early season form was midfielders getting beyond the striker, we haven’t seen that nearly often enough in recent weeks. Ethan Ross, Matthews and Tait were excellent at this earlier in the season.

At the moment everything is a bit side to side and pedestrian in front of the opposition which is very easy to defend, we lack a threat in behind.

Back 4 and goalkeeper picks itself. I think a midfield diamond of Hendry, Matthews, Tait and Kennedy has good look about it. Hendry at the base of the diamond, our deepest lying midfielder as he has been most of the season. He can still create from there and he fills in the gaps nicely when the full backs get forward which they are both good at would still be required to do in this formation but with hopefully more targets in the box and some of the creative burden lifted by a more flexible and forward thinking midfield.

Matthews and Tait have great energy and ability to go box to box. Tait is more technical and creative but both can make dangerous late runs from midfield. I would then have Kennedy/Vaughan at the top of the diamond in a free role behind the strikers, given licence to pick up pockets of space wherever they can and get on the ball as much as possible.

The two upfront could be any 2 from 4, I honestly can’t decide. Duku and Gullan are well out of form and there are still big question marks on the quality of Ugwu and Abraham. I’d go something like this:

                           MacDonald

Tumilty-Musonda-Bene-MacDonald

                              Hendry    
                       Matthews-Tait   
                            Kennedy

                        Duku-Gullan

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To get in the mood for the trip to Ayr on Saturday I'm going to turn the water off in my house and when I go for a pish I'll just wipe my hands on my jeans.

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2 hours ago, R.R.FC said:

The more I think about it, the more I’m coming round to the idea of a 4-1-2-1-2 (midfield diamond in more straightforward terms). We have been too rigid in recent games. As discussed, the full backs are our sole creative threat. An important part of our early season form was midfielders getting beyond the striker, we haven’t seen that nearly often enough in recent weeks. Ethan Ross, Matthews and Tait were excellent at this earlier in the season.

At the moment everything is a bit side to side and pedestrian in front of the opposition which is very easy to defend, we lack a threat in behind.

Back 4 and goalkeeper picks itself. I think a midfield diamond of Hendry, Matthews, Tait and Kennedy has good look about it. Hendry at the base of the diamond, our deepest lying midfielder as he has been most of the season. He can still create from there and he fills in the gaps nicely when the full backs get forward which they are both good at would still be required to do in this formation but with hopefully more targets in the box and some of the creative burden lifted by a more flexible and forward thinking midfield.

Matthews and Tait have great energy and ability to go box to box. Tait is more technical and creative but both can make dangerous late runs from midfield. I would then have Kennedy/Vaughan at the top of the diamond in a free role behind the strikers, given licence to pick up pockets of space wherever they can and get on the ball as much as possible.

The two upfront could be any 2 from 4, I honestly can’t decide. Duku and Gullan are well out of form and there are still big question marks on the quality of Ugwu and Abraham. I’d go something like this:

                           MacDonald

Tumilty-Musonda-Bene-MacDonald

                              Hendry    
                       Matthews-Tait   
                            Kennedy

                        Duku-Gullan

If Vaughan is fit he must start, only player that looked interested in scoring 

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f**k sake Ayr away. Can we just forfeit now and save everyone the eye gouging misery of that. 

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I thought Duku had a January deal back down south arranged - hence Abraham lined up to come in - but couldn’t complete the deal due to Covid 🤷‍♂️

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11 hours ago, Zen Archer Esq. said:

To get in the mood for the trip to Ayr on Saturday I'm going to turn the water off in my house and when I go for a pish I'll just wipe my hands on my jeans.

You could always act like a west coast local and wipe them on your shell suit bottoms to make it even more authentic.

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18 minutes ago, keyser_soze said:

You could always act like a west coast local and wipe them on your shell suit bottoms to make it even more authentic.

Last time I saw someone wearing a shell suit, it was in Valentes and the guy topped it off with a pair of cheap black brogues 😲😲

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I think we need to change from the one up front with two wingers and the flat midfield three.

Teams now seem to keep their fullbacks deep which nullifies the threat from our wingers. The flat midfield three means no one gets forward to support the main striker.

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Diamond midfield definitely the way to go. Start Vaughan and Gullan up top. Play one of Tait, Kennedy or Armstrong at the tip of the diamond. Two of Matthews, Spencer or Tait in the two and Hendry at the base.

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17 hours ago, Zen Archer Esq. said:

To get in the mood for the trip to Ayr on Saturday I'm going to turn the water off in my house and when I go for a pish I'll just wipe my hands on my jeans.

If you have an actual toilet it’ll be difficult to recreate the Somerset toilet trip experience. What you need is a rusty gutter. Place that at skirting level and piss in it.

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Lights on at Starks Park tonight extra training as a punishment maybe?
Game on Saturday so probably normal to have a cool down session after yesterday's game.

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