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The St. Mirren FC 2022/23 thread


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On 08/10/2022 at 17:48, Arch Stanton said:

Has any other club got as abysmal a record as Saints at Ibrox?

In games v Rangers (1872) and (2012) Saints have only won 8 league games and 1 league cup tie...EVER! The last win was over 30 years ago.

Would be interesting to see a comparison with the likes of Motherwell, Kilmarnock, DU etc.

Our record at Parkhead won’t be much better but at Ibrox it should be.

Off the top of my head I can remember 4 or 5 wins at Ibrox in the last 30 years. 
 

Think it’s 6 times in the last 30 years:

1993, 1998, 2000, 2007, 2012, 2018.

We’ve only beaten Celtic in Glasgow twice since 1955 I believe. In the 2012 League Cup final and I think the win at Celtic park was either 6 months before or 6 months after that cup final.

Edited by Sortmeout
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30 minutes ago, Sortmeout said:

Our record at Parkhead won’t be much better but at Ibrox it should be.

Off the top of my head I can remember 4 or 5 wins at Ibrox in the last 30 years. 
 

Think it’s 6 times in the last 30 years:

1993, 1998, 2000, 2007, 2012, 2018.

We’ve only beaten Celtic in Glasgow twice since 1955 I believe. In the 2012 League Cup final and I think the win at Celtic park was either 6 months before or 6 months after that cup final.

I think there is a song about another time we beat Celtic in Glasgow!

We also beat them in the COVID season 2-1 at Parkhead

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Our record at Parkhead won’t be much better but at Ibrox it should be.
Off the top of my head I can remember 4 or 5 wins at Ibrox in the last 30 years. 
 
Think it’s 6 times in the last 30 years:
1993, 1998, 2000, 2007, 2012, 2018.
We’ve only beaten Celtic in Glasgow twice since 1955 I believe. In the 2012 League Cup final and I think the win at Celtic park was either 6 months before or 6 months after that cup final.

The league cup semi final where we won 3-2 and beat them 2-0 in 2021 in an empty stadium
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16 hours ago, Buddie Holly said:

first var game for us is v dundee utd  a week on saturday ☹️

It's a travesty and should be nowhere near our game, tbh. Leagues with far more money are making a hash of it and I desperately hope we make a stand and bin it at the end of the season when it inevitably hasn't worked.

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9 minutes ago, Coventry Saint said:

It's a travesty and should be nowhere near our game, tbh. Leagues with far more money are making a hash of it and I desperately hope we make a stand and bin it at the end of the season when it inevitably hasn't worked.

I have the complete opposite opinion.

Currently the only avenue we have, if dreadful decisions are given against us, is to whine loudly. There is absolutely no mechanism, other than rescinding/raising card offences via panel, to address the situation. With VAR we will not only see the same sort of replays that we get in Sportscene every week, where the referees are regularly called out for bad decisions in games, but they will be active at the time, the referee and the VAR assistant will have the option to review it real time. That can only be a good thing.

Now, whether referees and/or VAR assistants keep up the charade of looking elsewhere when it's one of the OF remains to be seen, and VAR has to be very careful not to "only matter when the OF are playing", but in general the only thing VAR does is shift the timeline of where video replays are relevant from (now) some hours after the game where most decisions cannot be challenged to (the future) where that video is not only available immediately, it is to be used to determine the actual outcome of the decision itself.

My only concerns about VAR is that it is financially difficult for teams at this time.. ** waves hand in general direction of the utter shit happening all around us ** ..and that it becomes an OF "political toy". Obviously, as some OF fans are intentionally thick, conspiracies will remain.

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Just now, Coventry Saint said:

Which is fine, but fans of clubs such as ours who think VAR is going to be anything other than yet another method by which we get hafted are, IMO, kidding themselves.

This is a lengthy answer and it should probably go in the VAR thread. I understand if you can't be fucked with a "wall of Ric text" this morning.. ;)

 

As I say, surely it's a benefit if video is reviewed by the referee, at the time of the offence, where they are able to confirm or overturn a decision rather than it be left to Thomo and Stewart arguing about it in a studio many hours later. Only one of those things can influence the game, and at this point all we have is the studio debate.

Will VAR be hijacked by the OF and their support? Of course, but then that shouldn't preclude VAR being introduced and it's a reductive argument to use. The OF use the league structure and/or the voting system to claim some sort of conspiracy against them, they'll do the same for VAR, the only way to stop them doing it is just to concede to every demand they ask for - which of course we won't. VAR is not the source of their craziness, and in the same way we wouldn't stop using a league structure because Gerrard comes out and (wrongly) claims it's been inherently bias against them for years, so in the same way you wouldn't not introduce VAR because they'll use that as an excuse as well.

Will VAR slow down games? It could, yes, although at this point, there is nothing stopping an official from being very pernickety involving lots of stop start. We've watched tons of games where the official seems to relish in being the person in charge, sidestepping the fact that a game of football is meant to be played. So again, VAR isn't necessarily going to slow down games any more than it's within the remit of the official to do so.

Will VAR offer us up decisions we won't like? Of course. In fact this is the thing I'm most looking forward to. I'm a programmer, to me there is no issue with things being binary, they're either true or false. Currently things like offside or when the ball leaves the pitch, it's a judgement call by either linesperson or referee, it's open to debate. With VAR and the computing behind it, there is no need for that. What will annoy people is that the degrees of certainty will be much finer. In general, an official can't really tell if a foot or a hand is offside, they can tell if a leg or an arm is, but the minutia is limited because of the limits of the human brain. VAR will be exact about this, and I fully expect people to complain that "yeah, he was offside but it was only by the tiniest amount, at what point do we say 'just play on'?" The thing is, that's based on the rules, if the rules say a hand past the offside line is offside then it's not VAR's fault it's accurate enough to determine such fine margins. Fine margins that can be, at present, a hunch or a judgement call, rather than a definite.

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24 minutes ago, Doonhame Buddie said:

If our on field officials aren’t good enough (and they patently are not good enough), why should we expect the VAR assistants to be any better?

The problem with that argument, and trust me I fully understand the cynicism, is it's effectively saying rather than have live video replays of a decision (that they've made wrongly or require assistance with) you'd rather they just stick with their original and possibly flawed first reaction? If anything, that's an argument for VAR not against it. If you think our officials "aren't good enough" then scrutiny is the issue, many many times we've seen referees saying they had to make a snap decision. VAR removes the sole dependency. It gives them time to ponder and allows them an out, especially as they will be seeing it from many angles not available to them at the time.

Far, far, too often we've seen referees influenced by OF crowds, Walsh's one against us recently could be considered within that description. With that in mind it can only be a good thing that VAR is used in those circumstances. It would take a fucking bold referee to award a penalty when thousands of people are watching an incident with no contact. Officials can make mistakes, we all can, without VAR they are effectively forced to stick with whatever comes into their head at the time.

 

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...and thus ends my TED talk on VAR, thank you for coming. As I've pretty much said my piece, you can see I'm in favour but I do understand misgivings others have.

 

However onto another point, and it's something the Motherwell fans will need to comment on. Looking in from outside, while we did our usual yo-yo or league death spiral, Motherwell have tended to avoid the scrap. Not always as we saw from the hilarious playoff they had against Rangers (..where is Moshni now, eh?), but in general they always seemed to be enough points further up the table to be more concerned with top 6 and Europe rather than Championship and visits to Dundee. Again, looking from the outside, it seemed that Motherwell under Robinson managed to get points on the board early and rely on that first push to keep them clear. I could be completely wrong here, as I say, it's more a thing looking from the outside, Motherwell fans will be able to correct me.

With that in mind, it looks like that is what is happening with us. We lost against St Johnstone and Rangers, yet the results of those around us, and with the earlier run of wins, we've positioned ourselves nicely out of the way of any relegation battle (for now anyway).

Obvs, all this could come back to bite me, and in turn we could be left fighting relegation this season.

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2 hours ago, Coventry Saint said:

It's a travesty and should be nowhere near our game, tbh. Leagues with far more money are making a hash of it and I desperately hope we make a stand and bin it at the end of the season when it inevitably hasn't worked.

It will only be an issue if it has an effect on the outcome of the title. Either half of the cheeks will inevitably cry to the relevant authorities if it costs them points. The blue bigots in particular will have lengthy statements already prepared. 

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2 hours ago, Ric said:

However onto another point, and it's something the Motherwell fans will need to comment on. Looking in from outside, while we did our usual yo-yo or league death spiral, Motherwell have tended to avoid the scrap. Not always as we saw from the hilarious playoff they had against Rangers (..where is Moshni now, eh?), but in general they always seemed to be enough points further up the table to be more concerned with top 6 and Europe rather than Championship and visits to Dundee. Again, looking from the outside, it seemed that Motherwell under Robinson managed to get points on the board early and rely on that first push to keep them clear. I could be completely wrong here, as I say, it's more a thing looking from the outside, Motherwell fans will be able to correct me.

With that in mind, it looks like that is what is happening with us. We lost against St Johnstone and Rangers, yet the results of those around us, and with the earlier run of wins, we've positioned ourselves nicely out of the way of any relegation battle (for now anyway).

Obvs, all this could come back to bite me, and in turn we could be left fighting relegation this season.

If you're talking generally then since promotion our league finishes have been 9th, 8th, 8th, 9th, 6th, 6th, 10th, 8th, 3rd, 2nd, 8th, 8th, 9th, 7th, 4th, 8th, 11th, 12th (thanks Falkirk), 6th, 6th, 8th, 10th, 3rd, 7th, 5th, 6th, 3rd, 2nd, 2nd, 11th, 5th, 9th, 7th, 8th, 3rd*, 8th and 5th - peaks and troughs really.

Basically our average league position is 6.75.

With Robinson, he was here for 3.5 seasons and in that time he finished 7th, 8th and 3rd* before leaving when we were 10th (soon to be joint bottom).

His first season (2017/18) he did exactly as you said, got the points on the board early before he hit a slump through December (injuries played a big part of that but also we had a trilogy of games against Celtic which kind of derailed things and knocked us sideways - we also sold Moult) before steadying the ship (and reaching another cup final).

Our PPG up to the end of November was 1.64, by the winter break we'd dropped from 5th to 8th and our PPG was 1.14 without a win in 8 between 29th Nov - 30th December. Post-break through to the end of the season it was 1.41.

His 2nd season (2018/19) started poorly. Arguably teams had sussed him out and he admitted that we were brutal to watch and needed fixing. However he got to the winter break and basically ripped everything up and started again with a 433 that got the best out of players like Turnbull, Campbell, Hastie, Ariyibi.

We were 9th going into the break that season and our PPG was 1. Post-break, with the new shape our points total was 3rd in the league (with the caveat we were playing bottom 6 sides post-split) and our PPG was 1.76.

That form ran into his 3rd season (2019/20) which was probably his most consistent and from Gameweek 5 we didn't drop out of the Top 4 - we had the third best points total for the calendar year. Some would point to the fact that post-break with Devante Cole having been recalled by Wigan and James Scott sold at the last minute we only had 2 wins in 9 in the league by the point the league was called (with 8 games to go) and question whether we'd have sustained that (albeit we had already confirmed our Top 6 place).

For the calendar year 2020 though (with Robinson resigning on Dec 31st) we had only won 6 from 28 league games.

Tbh, that feels like a pretty decent overview of Robinson's time with us - in among the huge turnover of players we'd see almost cyclical runs of form both good and bad. When the form was good it was pretty sustained, equally though when it was bad it usually meant him having to blow everything up and start again. We probably saw 3 different iterations of Robinson teams in his 3.5 years at the club.

I suppose you've seen a low level version of that already given how he started after taking over from Goodwin and where you were in the league at that point vs how things are going at the moment.

Edited by capt_oats
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@capt_oats bloody hell, that's quite the summary!

It'll certainly be interesting to see the level of turnover there is in our squad. He was 'lucky' in the sense that we were going to be in transition anyway, even if Goodwin stayed. Ayunga, Carson were Robinson's call, as was Baccus and Strain (although that connection might have existed already as we'd clearly been looking in that part of the World with Greive (NZ)). He also put faith into Erhahon in the middle of the park, that was a bit of a gamble. All these decisions have worked out well for him, with only the other winger looking like a gamble that isn't going to pay off.

 

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4 hours ago, Coventry Saint said:

Which is fine, but fans of clubs such as ours who think VAR is going to be anything other than yet another method by which we get hafted are, IMO, kidding themselves.

We’ll have gone bust by the time VAR is introduced…

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A fair question is would VAR have changed the refs opinion on the penalty on Saturday? My answer would be no. Would we have been given that at the other end, even with VAR available? I highly doubt it.

Suppose we'll find out during the remainder of the season, but it's worth remembering it's going to be the same officials going along with the technology.

 

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13 hours ago, sergie's no1 fan said:

A fair question is would VAR have changed the refs opinion on the penalty on Saturday? My answer would be no. Would we have been given that at the other end, even with VAR available? I highly doubt it.

Suppose we'll find out during the remainder of the season, but it's worth remembering it's going to be the same officials going along with the technology.

 

Didn’t they wheel out Dermott Gallagher after we beat Celtic to say VAR would have disallowed one of our goals and some other sycophantic pish?

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1 hour ago, Torfason said:

Didn’t they wheel out Dermott Gallagher after we beat Celtic to say VAR would have disallowed one of our goals and some other sycophantic pish?

Yeah, for days after we beat Celtic there were numerous media outlets and pundits "examining" our second goal and insisting it shouldn't have stood. Compare that to the penalty on Saturday where the said it probably wasn't one on sportscene and that's the end of it. When VAR comes in I know our goal against Celtic is far more likely to be overturned than the penalty for Rangers.

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6 hours ago, GAD said:

Yeah, for days after we beat Celtic there were numerous media outlets and pundits "examining" our second goal and insisting it shouldn't have stood. Compare that to the penalty on Saturday where the said it probably wasn't one on sportscene and that's the end of it. When VAR comes in I know our goal against Celtic is far more likely to be overturned than the penalty for Rangers.

The difference with VAR is that it removes the referee's deniable plausibility. Previously they could claim the incident happened too fast and they made a decision, one which will not be overturned until long after the game is finished if at all. Now, there will not only be the opportunity for the ref to review it at the very moment, from multiple angles, that video is available to the broadcasters who will also analyse it.

Do I think that referees will continue to make decisions that question their integrity? Sure, of course they will, the difference with VAR is that it changes the reaction to that decision. As I said earlier, it would be a very bold official (and a quickly demoted one) who decides to continue on with a flawed decision when not just they, but the crowds in the stands and/or the viewers at home, were viewing an incident that clearly shows actions contrary to the ones the referee has claimed.

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