I can share some of our build-up from the SMFC fanzine if City fans are interested.
“We’re on our 3G pitch and I don’t think Solihull will have played on many artificial surfaces, so that will give us a slight edge in that sense,” he said.
Our side often trains on artificial surfaces and has played (and won) on 3G at Sutton United, Bromley, Maidstone United, and Kelty Hearts in the last couple of seasons. Also our pitch is like a frigging carpet but the coaches still insist on the team keeping the ball in the air half the time, so I'm not sure it'll have the effect Andy Ballard hopes
I hope someone can translate... In short: Sat so deep first half I needed a F*cking telescope to see our midfield.. After second goal we looked interesting, well that's if you like watching paint dry... At least we put passes together, and our center forward decided it might be a good idea to actually close down the keeper and look like we were remotely interested...
Worst performance I've seen in FA cup,and I can go back a long time. Yes in the past we have had embarrassments, but players still tried 100%... Gutless performance... Best forgotten about..
Solihull came from the land of the giants and demonstrated the physical difference between the Conference and the division below. They were simply too big, too fast and played to their strengths. To illustrate the difference, Adi Yussef was only on their bench !
For twenty minutes after the first goal, City played well and the neat football, with Zac to the fore, created two half chances, which might have changed the game had either had gone in. But a sloppy mistake by Oastler gave away the second and the arial ping-pong for the third ended the game as a contest before half-time
One thing I didn't understand was the continued insistence at 0-5 down on playing pretty triangles by our own corner flags and inevitably losing the ball. The one time it was launched long we won a free kick and scored.
Post by Merritted Criticism on Nov 9, 2019 20:54:53 GMT
Boring football. Not enough effort. Fe2 players caring on the pitch and nobody bothered in the dugout.
A 'gameplan' which was just playing to their strengths - long balls to a tall defence and giving them time on the ball. How about playing to our strengths? That's how we did it for the last 2 seasons and it worked.
First time we've been embarrassed at this stage of the cup. What changed?
Take nothing away from Solihull: they are one of the best non-league teams in the country at the moment and you could see why. Maybe it was just a day when nothing City could do would have won or drawn them the match. But I do think they could have done better.
I felt that from the first minute when we did not press the Moors defenders in their own half, and when Nana Owusu, one our best shot-takers, turned down a half chance when in sight of goal after about fifteen minutes, you just knew City were not really up for this. It spread through much of the team and disappointed the fans.
If you are going to have a sniff of a chance against superior opposition you simply have to press them from the start. We may only have been able to maintain that for the first 15-20 minutes, and in brief spells thereafter, but let's at least give it a go. That pressing led to most of our goals at the League Two clubs in 2017 and 2018. They got a bit nervous at the back and made a few mistakes. If you try a shot you have a chance. If you don't, you won't score, to state the obvious. By laying off them we allowed the Moors to settle into their rhythm, dictate the pace and pick us off. They were the team doing the pressing! And they were still doing it in the second half.
Some players did give it a go: Kyran Wiltshire (what a great free-kick, too!), Josh Ashby and Eddie Jones showed the way. Zac was always surrounded by two or three opponents, who clearly saw him as the danger man. Reece battled away and struck a few good passes. Joe tried too: unfortunate for him to have his one slip punished with a goal, but that is what a good team can do to you. We needed all eleven to put in their best shift today and this didn't happen. It seemed we were a bit afraid of them early on and we never recovered from that early goal.
That said, this was always going to be a more difficult fixture than playing the League Two teams away. That may sound strange, but what gives a small team a chance is the opposition underestimating you, and then feeling the pressure. We were underestimated by every League team we have played in the FA Cup in the past twenty years, and they feel the pressure more when they are League and they are at home. Though Solihull were expected to win, being non-league themselves and away from home eased that burden a bit and put a little more on City.
Statistics back this view. Just looking at the FA Cup proper rounds since 1999, our record at home is Played 4, Won 0 Drawn 0 Lost 4 (counting the Manor as 'home' against Wycombe). Playing non-league home: P:2 W:0 D:0 L:2. Playing non-league, but away: 1 draw. But see the difference when we play League opposition away: P:6 W:1 D:3 L:2. And I might add that both of those two defeats were desperately close games we deserved to draw, but conceded a very late goal, as Andy Ballard will remember from ten years ago, and we all remember from Notts County two years ago. In all the away games against League teams, City played out of their skins. In all of the games at CPF, without exception, we were distinctly underwhelming.
That's why I was hoping for a League Two team away. Getting a top NL team at home was the worst possible draw for us.
But hey, it was good to make the First Round again, and now that's over, we can, to use the old cliché. concentrate on the league.
Post by toocoulson4schoolson on Nov 10, 2019 20:50:29 GMT
Let's not mince our words - that was dire.
We've had three great seasons in the cup and, while all of them had to end in defeat, we came out of the previous two with a huge sense of pride in the team. This time could hardly have been more different.
Solihull are clearly a good side - they had a very clear gameplan which they're clearly very adept at executing. It's simple but effective, and even when you know what's coming it's going to be difficult for any side to combat - especially when it hinges around a player like McCallum.
You obviously don't go into a game like this expecting to win, but you do expect to compete. We failed to do that.
This was the biggest game of our season and we somehow managed to look completely disinterested in the first half. We seemed too focussed on trying to stop them playing their game to go forward and play our own. Zac looked like the one player who might make things happen but with nobody else really threatening it was easy for Solihull to put numbers around him and minimise his impact on the game.
Ironically, the one thing which really impressed me was the way we kept going once we were 5-0 down, but that doesn't make up for the way we got into that situation.
That's still a positive we can take, as was Nyanney coming on and looking no less comfortable than any of the senior players around him, but the whole experience was still a bit embarrassing.
In a way we're victims of our past successes - we had such a great ride with Jonah consistently pushing the squad to be so much greater than the sum of its parts when it really mattered most that we came to expect it. But, at least the run we did have has once again brought in a nice little cash injection.
Little I can add to the comments/reports already posted which are generally spot on. The disappointment is always greater if you are expecting something and it doesn't happen and I think many of us truly believed that we could cause another 'upset'. Credit should be given to the team for giving us that belief through their recent performances. However, it was not to be.
My one wish at the moment is that the players could be more vocal. City are a quiet team and I feel that all players respond to vocal encouragement and the occasional rollicking too. It helps improve team spirit and often the performance.