Ah, is it just me or does anybody see
The new improved tomorrow isn’t what it used to be
(Bon Jovi – The More Things Change)
Was yesterday the day of the Wolves of Groundhog Day? At the end of the opening stanza of #smashtheleague I was reminded of that hair metal warbler Jon Bon Jovi, the more things change, the more they stay the same.
Once again we left the game full of if onlys. If only Ayala hadn’t made that mistake. If only Braithwaite could hit the target when a ball is put on his forehead 6 yards from goal. If only the Wolves keeper hadn’t gone and Ruddy well saved from Assombalonga. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but it all felt very similar to senor Karanka’s reign.
Boro were competitive and managed to limit the chances of the opposition but once again going a goal down became a mountain we could not climb. Let’s not be too harsh on Ayala. Dani was dozy in putting Bontani in to blast the ball home, but all defenders and goalkeepers can and will make mistakes. The more worrying thing was how often did Boro actually test Ruddy other than the save from Assombalonga. Despite spending a fortune on attacking talent, Monk’s new dawn felt a lot like a Karanka performance.
My previous column hailed Gaston Ramirez. Many Boro fans are glad to see the back of him but the truth is he leaves some pretty big shoes to fill. Without someone to unpick the lock, Britt, Braithwaite and Bamford can’t break down the door to the opposition goal. With Downing deposed, Traore syphoned from the squad and Chapman joining the Mogga Boro-isation of Blackburn, Boro lacked creativity on the pitch and the bench.
I’m sure it already is top of Bausor’s agenda, but adding some attacking midfielders with the ability to breakdown defence’s is critical even at this early stage of the season.
I’m not going panic after one result, this team will take time to gel and there were a few promising signs yesterday. Each summer under Aitor, the attacking end of the team would be allegedy upgraded but with the same blunt Boro result. Perhaps it’s going to take a bit longer than we thought to remove some of the worse elements of Karankanncio from the Boro DNA. Plenty for Monk and Gibson to ponder between now and the end of the window.
Are you worried about Boro’s start to the season against Wolves?