A pun? In my blog? No way, man. It weren’t me.

Anyway, I noted in my last post about how poor Ben Turner was against Watford. He had a git of a game. He was that poor, I felt he might be dropped.

So in typical Ben Turner fashion, he got the nod against Derby on Saturday and played an absolute blinder. Ben, you brilliant bastard.

Looking back at it, he was about the only player to have a decent game throughout. I’ve no immediate problem with that because as a team we showed discipline and organisation, and we bloody well won. I think Aidy knows that there was also a lot we did poorly though. He’s no fool.

As stupid an excuse as it sounds, it didn’t seem like our players coped all that well with the combination of an early start and slick pitch. Throughout the game they seemed slow to react to situations and to make decisions, while even the easiest of balls they managed to make a pig’s ear of controlling. All, I must add, except Doyle, who was uncharacteristically solid in doing the basics.

I know, I was shocked too.

I have to say, even though Derby were passing the arse out of the ball, I was never too worried about them breaking us down. They had a few moments in the game, but there was never really anyone in the box to finish things off for them. Kris Commons still impresses me every time I see him, mind.

Our first goal came out of nowhere as everyone was still waffling on about how unlucky Carsley was to have his effort cleared off the line. In the resulting attack, McSheffrey showed us a glimpse of what he used to do back in 2005. Bloody gorgeous quick feet to draw in Leacock’s tackle, leaving a penalty decision even Jorge Larrionda couldn’t miss. Lukeyjukey walloped it away once again. Unfortunately that was to be Jutkiewicz’s final contribution of note, as he pulled something and had to be replaced by big Clive Platini.

Clive was top again, and the good thing about having him in the team is you know that if you’re not playing well and you’re lacking the confidence and the touch to play flowing football, you can just tonk it up to him – he’ll do something with it.

We were out very early for the second half and this achieved bugger all as we duly conceded an early equaliser. I can’t really attribute blame to any single person, it was just slack defending all round.

It was the second half where Ben Turner came into his own. Marshalling the defence in a way that someone his size should. I watched the game back on Sky+ and it seemed it wasn’t just home bias that noticed his performance – Ian Darke was particularly keen on him. And rightly so.

One thing that he didn’t get much credit for was the quality of the winning header. It looked far from a simple finish from where I was. Either way, it was great to see him cap a great game with his first goal.

Not quite as great finding myself on tele when I watched it back later on that day. It wasn’t quite a close-up of Fred Collins proportions, but after 15 years of going to watch them, it was nice to finally get my blurry mug on screen in some form.

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Late winners are always the best.

 

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