United 6 Peterborough 2 - Report and Pod

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Deadbat

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Think this shows the formation, but as we all saw it was quite fluid.

View attachment 120905

I hope Davies will add something when he returns. More composure and better passing may help us find space a bit earlier, and he's a bit quicker than Robinson, probably a better one on one defender. He's not the most commanding though, so we need to prepare well against the biggest and most direct teams in the division.
Still to play Cardiff, Millwall and Boro too. Quite a few more other physical sides on top of these. A dozen or more will play percentages on throws/set plays.

I personally think this obsession with having a left sided CB was not looking at the main weakness we have without O'Connell- physicality and aerial presence. Think we will see this time and time again sadly. Hopefully January we can address it but with only one loan left we can start then SJ might look at the top of the field after those transfers fell through.
 

Flumps

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Long range efforts! Finally I saw some long range efforts. I've been moaning about this for ages. For quite some time we could be on the edge of the box and the keeper could nip for a drink fully confident we wouldn't make an attempt till we got close.

They don't always go in but nice to see them having the confidence to attempt it.
 

Wards

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Think this shows the formation, but as we all saw it was quite fluid.



I hope Davies will add something when he returns. More composure and better passing may help us find space a bit earlier, and he's a bit quicker than Robinson, probably a better one on one defender. He's not the most commanding though, so we need to prepare well against the biggest and most direct teams in the division.
I was just about to chirp in on this and say you can only really tell what a formation should be when we aren't in possession. When we have the ball it should be a lot more fluid than having 'set' positions.

Definite 4-2-3-1 for me. Slav's favored formation too I believe.
 

Dnblade

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I was just about to chirp in on this and say you can only really tell what a formation should be when we aren't in possession. When we have the ball it should be a lot more fluid than having 'set' positions.

Definite 4-2-3-1 for me. Slav's favored formation too I believe.
Yeah that's how I always gauge it, how we shape up out of possession.. Didn't make the game as working all weekend, but since watched it back,and definitely 4231 for me without the ball.
MGW and Ndiaye were a breath of fresh air, and Billy, Fleck and Osborn were also outstanding.. gutted I missed it, but great performance.
 

ChrisDysonHT

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Pod available at your preferred way of listening here and match report below:







https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/id1508158343?i=1000535026156



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Finally, after what seems like an eternity, the Blades fans could leave the Lane with beaming smiles as United finally could experience that winning feeling after trouncing Peterborough 6-2. United played confident and entertaining football and attacked at will scoring some superb goals in a complete team performance. A Jack Robinson threatened to undo a dominant first half where the home side should have been more than a goal up but after the break United regained the initiative and put the visitors away with ruthless efficiency. A number of players impressed with John Fleck showing the form of old and superb debuts from Morgan Gibbs White and the youngster Iliman Ndiaye. Both players left the pitch to standing ovations after excellent contributions. United scored 6 goals in a league game for the first time February 2000 in a victory against West Brom.



Manager Slavisa Jokanovic was not able to name new keeper Robin Olsen (quarantine) in his line up and had a number of other player unavailable due to various reasons. Berge (covid recovery), Davies (knock) and McGoldrick (calf) did not make it as Jokanovic made four changes form the last game. In came Jack Robinson, Ben Osborn and making their debuts Iliman Ndiaye and Morgan Gibbs White.



Peterborough started with former Owl’s loanee and Blades fan Jack Marriott up the top of the pitch flanked by Siriki Dembele.



The game began with United in the ascendancy with a better tempo than we had seen all season. Gibbs White and Osborn were heavily involved down the flanks and Ndiaye was showing for the ball. A bursting run by Fleck created space but the ball would not quite sit before Norrington Davies cross was cleared. Posh had hardly been in United’s half and it was one way traffic in terms of possession and territory. The opening goal came after 14 minutes when patient play saw it moved to the right and Gibbs White jinked inside beating his man before calmly picking his man out. NDIAYE came onto it and placed the ball calmly past Pym and it was a dream start for the Frenchman as he gleefully wheeled away in celebration. He kissed the Bramall Lane turf as he walked back to halfway clearly delighted with his debut goal.



The Blades continued to dominate and another decent move saw Osborn cross and Sharp return it but it was just too high for Ndiaye. Sharp could not bring the ball under control after a lovely chipped ball from Norwood and as the ball dropped Fleck looked to finish the rebound but went down and appealed for a penalty. The referee who had let a lot of contact go both ways waved away the appeal.



A rare error from United saw Foderingham kick out after a back pass from Norrington Davies but Untied were soon back on the attack. Both Gibbs White and Ndiaye were linking well with little flicks and passes with the former coming inside and the latter deep to receive the ball, looking like a young McGoldrick in some of the things he did! United needed to get the 2nd their domination deserved but again Sharp could not quite react quick enough and another chance went. After a number of corners bounced around, Posh were able to break out and out of nothing were level.



It was a routine punt down the field but Robinson made a real mess of it and MARRIOTT outmuscled the defender and was through on goal. He calmly drilled past Foderingham and the game was incredibly level. The defender put his head to his hands as sadly he has made another individual error after a poor start to the season. United had been in total control but the frail confidence and individual mistakes started to creep in for a period after this. However, they did have a chance to regain the lead as Egan had a header from point blank range but could not repeat his exploits in the week for Ireland and headed straight at Pym. Sharp could not force home as Kent blocked it and Peterborough survived.



Robinson then somehow headed wide from Norwood’s whipped delivery. This was the final opening for the Blades who will have been bitterly disappointed not to have been leading after being by far the better side. United had played front foot football and the two new incomers had made a difference in movement and unpredictability but Fleck and Norwood had also put in much improved performances.



Straight after the break Posh had a great chance to lead. The ball came down the left and as it came in United were lacking numbers and Foderingham had to stand up and block from Marriott and then also Burrows on the rebound. A Peterborough man went down looking for a penalty but it seemed quite theatrical and the referee blew up for simulation and booked Burrows for his attempts to con the officials. After this scare, the Blades were able to regain the lead on 51 minutes.



The goal was down the tenacity and skill of FLECK who stole in and robbed his man Kent who was dithering, played the ball to Sharp who put it back into the path of the Scottish midfielder who kept his cool and calmly played it with his right foot into the far corner of the net. Fleck had certainly looked more like his old self and this goal was reminiscent of the old Fleck from a few years ago powering through midfield with his dribbling and strong running.



Within two minutes and it was 3-1 on 53 minutes. Ndiaye brought the ball down and played in Sharp who got down the right and sent over an inviting cross for OSBORN to come in and convert with his right foot from close range. A lovey team goal that was well made with quick passing, movement and players desire to get ahead of their men. Something we have not seen much of in this Blades team in recent times. The ground was jubilant and Ndiaye and Gibbs White continued to link well with impudent flicks and tricks but carrying the ball too making defenders turn towards their own goal.



Fleck continued to run the midfield area winning the ball and driving through and create space. With the Peterborough team wilting under wave after wave of attacks, it looked like United may score every time they attacked. Another move saw Norrington Davies win a tackle and Ndiaye released Gibbs White who was through on the angle but Pym made a reaction save. The Wolves loanee knew he should have scored by his reaction.



Sharp’s hold up was also a focal point of United’s play and he was causing all sorts of problems for the defence. He dropped the shoulder and left Butler for dead and was chopped down. It looked close to being inside the box but the referee adjudged it was just outside the box. The rolled delivery was intercepted but United were rampant now. The fourth goal came when Ndiaye flashed more tricks and stepovers and played in GIBBS WHITE who smashed his shot high into the roof of the net past the flailing Pym. Another goal for another debutant! He celebrated with a very understated handshake with Ndiaye in front of the Kop as the had clearly built up a relationship very quickly.



It was dominant stuff from United who were seizing on every loose ball and then in contract to much of what we have seen this season, were off to the races with full backs up the field, midfielders getting into the box and strikers looking dangerous. The fifth goal came when Sharp was once again the architect with more intelligent and experienced front play. It was backheeled into his path and he stood up a deep cross but they was a lot of work still for NDIAYE to do but he arched his back and headed it into the net. As he scored, he seemed to cramp up and had to be substituted but it did not seem anything too serious and he lapped up the applause as he quite rightly got a standing ovation from four sides of Bramall Lane. Luke Freeman came on in his place and Conor Hourihane also entered the fray for his debut replacing Oliver Norwood.



There were still around 20 minutes to go and Peterborough were in disarray as United had swarmed all over them in a dominant spell since half time. Freeman nearly got another after quick feet and he curled wide before Gibbs White was the next to get a standing ovation, replaced by McBurnie.



Peterborough had barely been in the United half since that early chance but did get a consolation as Foderingham stayed at home and the ball was played into the box from the left and with the defence dithering to clear, JOHNSON HARRIS nipped in and drew a challenge from Egan. It was a soft penalty but contact was made. The striker made no mistake sending it down the middle but there was only 11 minutes remaining so it did not seem to alter the course of the afternoon. United carried on attacking with Freeman nearly getting in again before in stoppage time, a sixth goal came as Sharp and McBurnie linked playing it through OSBORN who clinically converted, again with his unfavoured right foot, and it was 6-2! The final whistle came not long after this and United and Jokanovic could finally celebrate a league win that will hopefully kick start the season.





United – It’s been a long time coming but we finally saw a Blades side play with no fear, attack, create and score goals! Yes, the win was great but this was not a scrappy win that was nicked or workmanlike. We battered Posh all game and save for the goal they scored and the chance after half time, we really just attacked at will. The two new lads, Gibbs White and Ndiaye made a real difference. Both technically good and fleet footed, they tried things, often with each other and had defenders worried. They tried to dribble and commit defenders and popped up in different areas. Not everything came off but there was an unpredictability we have not seen for a long time and it was entertaining. For the first time in ages players seemed to not have the worry and fear. It is odd but the two new attacking threats gave new life to the midfield behind (maybe competition for places too) and they started to doing things they had not before. Maybe as they had attackers that could run with it or run in behind, they could play it quicker or also move it quicker without stagnant forwards. Fleck was brilliant all game. As good as he has played since two seasons ago and he has to get close to that more. We cannot have one superb game and then a drop off. He was everywhere and made us tick. Norwood was less stand out but still solid and his set plays and passes were better with more forward stuff and at a better pace. The full backs got forward and Sharp even though he bungled a few chances first half was always involved and his hold up was excellent and showed some pace at times to create chances with some lovely assists second half. Ndiaye for his first game gave a remarkably mature performance. He wanted the ball and was not scared. Technically very good and can use either foot it seems but he wanted to dribble and get defenders going towards their goal and always wanted to make things happen. His first touch and control were excellent all game and he is strong too and was able to just keep the ball but also send us in the right direction. Loved his almost arrogant pomp in how he played. Him and Gibbs White clearly built up an almost instant understanding. Both players also came into different areas. The latter started wide right appeared centrally too and Ndiaye came off a lot. He was in a centre forward role but actually often ended up in a sort of 10 role. Loved watching some flair and dribbling and players trying things.



The goal was down to those two and their link up with a calm pass after skill on the wing from Gibbs White and a cool finish from Ndiaye. We had chances to go 2 or 3 up but it never happened but it was not like the visitors were in the game at all and the goal really was against the run of play. Robinson was just not strong enough and it was an awful error. I worry we still lack strength in this area. I suppose with Davies out, he comes in as the left sided centre back if we play a two but I think I would still prefer Basham and Egan – Bash has not been great but does not make as many big errors that lead to goals like Robinson. It handed them a way back into a game they had not been in.



Second half they actually could have scored as we were wide open but credit to Foderingham for the save (double save) and we somehow survived a great chance. After this Fleck scored a great goal and then a team goal from Osborn. Gibbs White nearly got one but then did with a wonder striker and we blew them away. Ndiaye was really enjoying himself and scored a great header before going off to rapturous applause. United looked like scoring every attack. Peterborough just had gone and looked like they did not want to be there anymore. At 71 minutes we could go on and get 7 or 8 if we wanted but we made changes (maybe with Tuesday in mind) and it became not quite as fluent but Freeman still had chances. The penalty was poor defending and a bit soft but more irritating than a huge concern with the game in the bag. We still had chances after this and got a 6th with Osborn capping an excellent individual game for him too.



Incredible after so many games and months with little chances, creativity or goals (and wins) and then today happened. You could not say it has been coming as for all the possession we have not really had many chances and it has been safe and conservative/slow. Today we had the ball so much again but moved it into the right areas and with the bit of something different up top, we looked like scoring. It could have been a lot more than 6 really and I am not wrong to say the full time flattered them. They got absolutely hammered and United could have scored every time we attacked, particularly second half. I am delighted with Ndiaye and he looks a great prospect on that evidence but hope people do not expect that every game (and he may be in and out a bit as he has never played a professional game till today) but also it is exciting to think what we might have. He looks to have real confidence. Gibbs White also is a skilful and intelligent player. As pleased as I was about them, I was as delighted about Fleck’s (and Norwood to some extent) massively improved play. I thought we dominated midfield, showed desire to get every loose ball and they could not cope with it as we swarmed all over them. We played some good football with some one touch and quick stuff, mixed in with patient stuff. Peterborough looked a poor side but we made them look poor and today was about us definitely.



It is just one result though but you hope it kick starts us. We have to follow it up in the next two games this week and look to try and put a series of wins together now. We have set the standard individually and collectively and have to follow it up. Tuesday is big as if can get close to that and/or win, then suddenly we are mid table and it’s gone from an awful start to an average one but a team that is improving. For now, though rather than worry too much about the games coming up or where it hopefully might take us, I just want to enjoy a game and a day where United were excellent and we saw some brilliant individual displays, two great debuts, some free-flowing football and chances/goals aplenty. Too often recently, either on TV or in person, we have felt almost bored but negative football where we looked nervous. Finally, we saw some of the opposite. Attacking, trying things and in short, entertaining the fans. Players wanted to make things happen rather than waiting and it seemed to spread with the new players helping restore the confidence of some of the badly out of form established players.



Hopefully now we can settle down and show much more of what we saw today on a regular basis. With players around such as Berge, Davies and Hourihane (and the keeper) to come in too, then the competition will hopefully ensure players have to be close to these standards. Today was really enjoyable and football was fun again after such a dreary 18 months being a Blade!

Watching this and then watching that young lass win the tennis made it THE best Saturday since we beat Norwich in March 2020
 

ChrisDysonHT

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Ratings:





Foderingham 7/10 – He did make a few errors such as the kick out first half and also stays at home a fair bit. Two or three times he was on his line when he could have come out and got it (the penalty he should have claimed it long before it got in the box – Baldock was fuming with him). However, despite this criticism and having little to do and no chance on the first goal, he made two saves that were vital just after the break and this might have been a big moment in our season.



Baldock 7/10 – Always involved and up the field. He was well forward from the off despite being a regulation right back rather than wing back. Often, he would be in a superb position to cross but not do it or come back inside. Still frustrates me but cannot fault his energy. His crossing continued to be really frustrating when he does cross, often overhitting it. Still, he continued to be an outlet and help press them back and cannot criticise his desire even if the final ball is still lacking somewhat at times.



Norrington Davies 7/10 – Thought he started a bit sloppy with a few mis controlled touches or lost out to his man but slowly grew into it and got a few decent crosses in and like Baldock, was well forward and looking to pin them back. Second half he continued to show he wanted to win the ball and did this on a few chances we had. Sometimes he loses his position a bit and still needs to ensure he monitors men over and do the defensive side but I do hope he gets a run now.



Robinson 5.5/10 – His mark may seem harsh but it was an awful mistake. I felt he had been quite front foot with his passing early but then played a few behind his men and then the goal he just was so weak as he got bundled out of it. He knew he made a rick as he had his head in his hands. We cannot gift goals like this to an opponent. After this he then missed a good chance at the other end and it seemed his head had gone for a bit. After the break he was determined to win anything that came his way but we were mainly attacking but did make a few interceptions/headed clearances near the end and had a better end to the game so I do credit him for keeping going when he could have gone under. Not sure he should be playing at all though even with injuries. I personally would rather Lopata or Gordon play if Slav does not trust Bash in a 5. Just not good enough sadly.



Egan 6.5/10 – He was solid enough with headers and clearances and used the ball well, moving it on when he could. However, he had some fantastic headed chances from corners but looped a few over the bar when well placed (scored for Ireland annoyingly in some way). Second half he was a spectator pretty much but then a daft challenge (maybe soft but not sure he had to even go in and the player bought it somewhat) led to the penalty. According to the stats that was the only foul we commited all day? Surely that is wrong?



Norwood 7.5/10 – Much better with everything he did. A few times he went to ground too easily in challenges (the chance for them at the start of the second half) and also a couple of floated set plays but his passing was faster and crisper overall. He also moved it forward more and took some better set plays. Had a few shots too (maybe Hourihane looming with his shooting ability has seen him try to lift his game in this area!) and he had a few decent chipped crosses and set plays too that led to chances. Nothing too flash but he also won a few tackles and generally gave a good showing.



Fleck 9/10 – Ndiaye and Gibbs White will get much of the plaudits but he was superb for me today. I might have him shading Ndiaye, Sharp, Gibbs White and Osborn for man of the match but you could make a case for all of those. He was the Fleck of old and the best I have seen him since the Man City game back around Xmas of that first season. He was onto the ball and winning interceptions, driving at players and looking so hungry. He wanted to get on it and link with others but was going forward and making things happen. Even first half he had done this a few times and was always looking to get us on the front foot. The goal he scored was brilliant, winning it and going and then finishing the pass back. He continued to dribble and create but he was picking up all the loose balls and getting close to the other United players meaning we had those little triangles and patterns of possession but in an attacking area.



Osborn 8.5/10 – Busy and involved first half and some neat bits of build up down the left. A few times he came back rather than crossing or driving on but he did not give it away too much. He sent over a decent cross that nearly led to a chance and his touch was better than it has been. Second half he carried this on but added a presence in the box and he took his first goal like a poacher using his right foot and then repeated this on the final goal with a brilliant finish. Some lovely bits of combination play with Sharp, Norrington Davies and Fleck as we attacked down both sides. I am not sure he will be a regular long term and see him more as a squad player who can fill in from time to time but he played really well today.



Sharp 8.5/10 – First half he was busy and involved but not sure things quite happened when he had 2 or 3 decent chances. Missed one header, mis controlled another when Norwood played him in and it got away from him and then snatched at the one that came back from Egan’s header. That’s why I have not given him a slightly higher mark (I am sure I will get criticised as he was phenomenal 2nd half and right there with Ndiaye and Fleck for MOTM!). After the break simply superb. He held it up, ran the channels, beat mean for skill and sometimes even pace! He won free kicks, got down the line and put dangerous crosses in and always a threat. He set up 3 goals with direct assists and nearly made a few more. Weirdly did not have any chances himself as he was the architect more than being on the end but was almost unplayable at times. They did not know what to do with him as he used his body strength, dropped the shoulder and sent defenders the wrong way before setting up his teammates or getting chopped down. Still seems to be the best striker at the club despite all the money we have spent and all those writing him off (myself included to some degree) in the summer look daft. Again.



Gibbs White 8.5/10 – A very impressive debut. He was playing on the right but always looking to come inside and link with others, particularly Ndiaye. Great first touch and lovely body control and balance. He went inside and outside of his man and always looking to attack/create. Some flicks or tricks did not come off and they broke away but love that he tried things and keeps wanting to make things happen. Made the first with a lovely run and intelligent pull back and then after a quieter spell came to life 2nd half. Should have scored himself but hit it at the keeper and he knew as he pushed away but then scored a stormer of a strike. Came off not long after this but a really good start. Not sure he is a winger but he is a player that wherever he plays will drift around and make things happen. Good feet, can dribble, quick and intelligent, making good runs.



Ndiaye 9/10 – Wow. I have to admit I was concerned with all the hype coming from the club in the week and thought this might be putting a bit too much pressure on someone who has never played a professional league game. He might be 21 so more experienced, at least in years, but still has never really played men’s football and even though coaches and fellow u23’s may rave about his potential, it is only that at the moment. Today I was cautious and just wanted him to show he wanted the ball and/or to make things happen. He began up front, when I thought he was more an inside forward or number 10 type but he kind of floated about early and came deep and across to the right or left. He was constantly linking with Gibbs White with little one twos or touches/flicks. His first touch is very good and quite strong being a decent size (not a skinny kid by any stretch). Early on showed his real confidence that was bordering on almost arrogant (in a good way) and clearly has a lot of self-belief. It was that no fear, almost streetball type player (like Rooney/Foden) in the way he wanted to get it and try and run or dribble at players. Took his goal so calmly early on and this set him up and all game the ball seemed almost magnetised to him. He continued to bring balls out of the sky or show little flicks but also worked hard coming back to win a tackle right on his own goal line and showed this work ethic a few times in the game. However, he clearly is a talent that comes to life when he gets the ball and 2nd half, he started to almost strut around with the stepovers, flicks continuing. His header was not easy and he did brilliantly to arc it into the goal. He went off seemingly more with muscle cramps than any serious injury but he had put so much in, it was not surprising. Fantastic to see him smiling and pumping his fist to the crowd and pointing to the badge as he walked off. I loved the self confidence and hope this is the start of seeing a player than can go and have a great career (hopefully stay with us too for a decent period of time). Only one game but looks a fantastic prospect. We have to realise he won’t play like this every game but for now I just want to enjoy being excited about a new young talent that has come in and literally ripped it up in his first every game! Brilliant to see.





Subs –



Hourihane – Neat and tidy but kind of replaced Norwood in terms of position. Acted as a bit of a defensive shield. Did make a few tackles and simple passes and also took one good corner that was right on the penalty spot. His signing already has seen the current incumbents up their game which is positive. With a lot of weeks seeing 2 or 3 games sure he will play a fair bit in the coming weeks.



Freeman – Kicked one out early but then got on the ball and had a few efforts with one header just over and then a decent fizzing shot not far over the bar too. He looks way overweight to me and with the new players coming in and Berge coming back, not sure he will be more than a bit part in my opinion.



McBurnie – It was interesting after he came on that even though he did not do much wrong and indeed held it up a few times and set up the 6th goal, the way we attacked was different. I know the game was over and we were just seeing it out but it was noticeable without the pace and running we had to play it slower in how it went back to front. He knows has a serious fight for minutes and needs to fast regain form in a career that is rapidly fading the last few years.





Jokanovic 9/10 – I was concerned about the team and the shape (4-4-2) but we were at it from the start with a real desire to get it forward quicker (not long ball – just tempo) and we dominated and controlled the match pretty much from the start to finish. The two debutants played brilliantly but also by leaving Hourihane on the bench, it kickstarted the other two midfielders to a performance. After the break we kept doing what we had and upped it even more pressing them further and further back. We had 24 shots on goal and 68% possession. However, this time we actually looked like scoring and had multiple players in the box, more of the ball in the box and subsequently had clear opportunities and scored goals as a result. Hopefully with the extra competition and confidence maybe resurgent (need to do it for more than one game for this to continue of course) we can build on this and go on a run. Still not sure he knows his best formation or whether he wants to play like we did today formation wise. Osborn was great but still think he wants to play a 4-3-3 formation eventually but at the moment not sure he quite has all the players to do this. Today was more orthodox how it looked but Fleck and Osborn were well advanced and Ndiaye, Gibbs White and even Sharp interchanged. It was fluent and regardless of how the formation was on paper, in reality moved from 4-4-2 to various formations all game. It was fluid and allowed the players to express themselves rather than worry about being rigid. I expect Olsen, Davies and Berge to come in for Foderingham, Robinson and Osborn (harsh as it sounds on his game today) in the coming weeks and then some of the front lads might swap around but Gibbs White and Ndiaye will be key to any attacking improvements if they carry on the form from today or even get close to it.





Peterborough – Darren Ferguson seems to be the sort of manager where the club is perfect for him and vice versa after both struggled to be consistently successful without each other. Backed by honest but slightly OTT (watched him on the Deadline Day coverage on Sky and her was a bit of a know it all) chairman, Darren McAnthony. Seems Barry Fry is involved still too at 76 years of age! To be fair they do recruit well and have sold on a number of players over the years. They are never going to be much higher than a consolidating Championship side really and many pundits felt they would struggle. I thought they might just have enough to stay up but they would be near the bottom with good home form but maybe struggle away.





They lack Championship experience really and goals may be an issue although Marriott, like Ferguson is back where he thrived before. Johnson Harris has never really done it at this level before. Dembele is a talent too but was quiet today. I feel at the back they will struggle and this showed today. They never really in the game at all and lost the battles individually and collectively. We looked better players and a better team. Sounds arrogant but we have not said that (rightfully so) much for a long time. We ought to have been well out of sight before the error got them back in it.



I will say for all the defending, they did leave 3 up for corners which was novel and something different. Meant we have to leave almost 4 back and a less crowded box on corners. Not sure what that means for an advantage for either an attacking or defensive side but less men up to score surely makes it less likely? Teams then have to have more defenders back. We did not score from a set play but it was an interesting approach non the less.



They may feel if they had got that goal after half time and led (as ridiculous as that would have been on the way the game had gone) then the crowd may have turned and it would have been a difficult atmosphere for the home players. However, after the second went in, they fell apart and they had no shape, organisation or togetherness. We scored another and another. It was as one sided a game as I have seen at the Lane for a long time and we threatened to score every attack. It went to 5-1 at 71 minutes before we made changes. The late penalty came but the 6th gave it a more realistic feel. Honestly, if it had finished 7 or 8-1, that would have been more indicative of how the game went in terms of possession, domination and the quality shown by the two respective sides. Towards the end they looked like they just wanted the game to be done as United kind of toyed with them. They could not handle Ndiaye, Sharp and Gibbs White at the top and Fleck/Norwood controlled the midfield.



Opponent Man of the Match – Hard to pick anyone. Suppose Marriot scored on the break and did well to rob his man and finish but he then missed a chance but he at least looked dangerous. The lad Knight got down the wing well a few times first half.



Opponent Weak link – Take your pick. Felt even though he made a few saves (Egan/Gibbs White) he looked a bit iffy but his defence in front of him were struggling. Kent made errors that led to chances. Szmodics and Dembele are decent on the ball and goal threats but both were never in it. The lad Butler was getting pulled apart and outthought and out skilled by Sharp all second half and he had a bit of a nightmare so may have been the stand out dud.



Referee/Officials – Stephen Martin. Thought he was a bit of a homer to begin with and we got the share of 50/50’s but he did let it flow both ways and like the refs have done this season, allowed a fair bit of contact – the Fleck challenge in the box for us and then twice down the left he waved away a player that went down for them. Ferguson was going made for a possible foul when they broke at 1-1 and he looked to have a case but surprised the 4th official let him let aet away with such a rant as he came on the pitch waving his arms!



He booked their lad for diving and another Butler for a cynical chop down on Sharp (looked very close to a penalty but maybe just outside). The penalty looked a bit soft but a silly challenge and there was contact but maybe he bought it a bit. The referee was not helped by officials who were guessing things and most of the time they just looked at the ref and he had to make decisions. Very generous 3 minutes additional time after 6 goals and 6 subs! I think he knew Peterborough just wanted to get off the field!





Crowd / Match Day experience – Boosted by the new lads wanting to get on the ball and excite and improvements from the rest, they were supportive and appreciative. They were clearly loving the little skills and tricks, things we have not seen and individual talent trying things and a bit of flair. I worried that the equaliser and reaction to Robinson may carry over and after the break if they score, then it may have gone south quickly but then we scored and it went from there. By the end the crowd were purring and it was a noisy and happy Lane. Posh only brought maybe 1,400-1,500 fans I would say. I know they do not get huge crowds but thought more may travel to one of the bigger grounds and teams, especially as not too far and a Saturday 3pm kick off.
It seems so long since we read a report with such high marks. Brilliant as ever
 

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