well it's an away trip to Cowdenbeath in league 2. Berwick are now managerless after Coughlin's departure. Cowdenbeath are a team we need to beat, they are always towards the bottom as are Berwick so we need the points to open a gap. I don't know how the season is going to pan out, I was critical of Coughlin's one striker policy and the way the team seemed to lack any positioning, especially at corners. I've never seen a team that has every player in the box for an opposition corner. This tactic puts the defence under incredible pressure, players seem to be tripping over each other and when the ball is cleared it's straight to an opposition player and the bell comes straight back again. I'm hoping that this is something the new manager will resolve.
Pie and bovril anyone?
A recent post on pieandbovril.com sums up some of the tactical changes that had fans puzzled.
"Amazed that I have yet to hear of Coughlin's resignation. To screw up team selection as bad as he did last week was bad enough, but to get it worse AND compound it with some comical substitutions this week, is just excruciating and pathetic.
Left back at centre-half today (and a crap left back at that). Shock horror -gives away 2 goals that would shame a pissed up Sunday team. Right back goes off injured - bench choc full of defenders - hey, let's bring on a 17 year old midfielder, and move an experienced midfielder to right back.
Hmmm. Not working. Let's stare at some plans for 10 minutes. I know! Take off our only attacker - and our best player on the day - and change the right back again by swapping him for a centre-half!
Similar odd tactics were deployed in the last game of the season when we wer up 2-0 against Edinburgh City. It was a game we won 3-2 but the way the team changed for the second half was very frustrating. The team lost shape and in the last 15 minutes panic ensued. Berwick were "only" needing a draw or a win but it was a horrible position to be in.
I've no doubt that Coughlin was a nice man, his post match interviews came across well and he seemed nice enough. Sadly the second division is a tough league, especially for teams that don't seem to have any money. But it's the results on the pitch that count. If we had been beaten with 2 strikers and better positioning the fans would still grumble but his tactics that never worked last season were too much to most fans this season.
I won't be at the game anyway!
Cowdenbeath is about 30 miles away from my house, a 45 minute journey but I won't be attending this game. It's not in protest or for any such reason. My wife Ruth is taking part in the Great Scottish Swim Aquathon at Loch Lomond and I shall be there to offer my support (and drive) but as always I'll be looking out for the result. I'll be at the Speedway watching the Caledonian Riders Championship on the Friday night (in Armadale) and off out to watch the Fife Flyers on the Sunday (in Kirkcaldy).