Blackpool 4 -2 Doncaster Rovers tactical review

Never mind Gary Neville, Jamie Carragher et al on Monday night football.  Here is a proper breakdown of what went wrong (four times!) in Doncaster Rovers defending during Saturdays defeat at Blackpool.  Even got pictures and all that technical stuff like on the telly..

First Goal against.

doncaster-rovers-v-blackpool-2Slide 1. free kick just awarded to Blackpool.  3 of the back 4 visible, look in decent position.  All 5 Rovers midfielders in shot, all within 20 yards of each other, none of them are picking anyone up.

Slide 2.  Free Kick taken, none of the midfield have moved, still no one picked up. Back line still looks ok.

Slide 3.  This reveals that Blair, like the 5 others in front of him is both fast asleep and also 10 yards out of position and can only look on as Blackpool forward runs into the gap he has left. Look how far he is away from Butler, especially as there is a forward who should be being picked up.

Slide 4. Butler can’t get across, others still yards out of position can’t recover. Goal.  Midfield asleep, defence gets it terribly wrong.

Goal Two


Slide 1. Ball about to be delivered, decent defensive shape.

Slide 2. Ball in, Butler spare, 2 Blackpool players marked.

Slide 3.  Clear it’s too high, Evina reacts to deal with cross. No pressure.

Slide 4.  Evina in position to clear, no opponent even in shot at this point, nowhere near Evina who could deal with this in his sleep.

Slide 5. Ball bouncing. Opposition full back now approaching but 3 yards behind Evina who will smash it away easily.  Cedric has so much time he begins to think about what baseball cap would go best with the away shirt.

Slide 6. Evina will smash it away, any second now.  He’s still a yard infront of his man… wait, no not again!?!

Slide 7.  “What was I doing again. Oh yeah, baseball hats”, Cedric watches on admiringly as the Blackpool man lobs the ball towards goal.

Slide 8. S**t.

Third Goal



Slide 1.  Free kick, in excess of 25 yeards out.  4 man wall set up, evina in position to close down shot.

Slide 2. Ball rolling, Evina out. Wall in good shape.

Slide 3.  Look at the position of the goalkeeper.  Inexplicably, having set the wall up he has taken up a terrible position basically behind the wall, leaving his left hand corner massively exposed.

Slide 4.  Goal.  Even full length dive only gets to within 2 foot of left hand post, ball smashed through gap.  This is pretty basic which you would expect the keeper to set up and deal with properly.  Good hit but should be a simple save.

Fourth Goal


Slide 1. Back four in different post codes, Butler decides to get as deep as possible.  Must have a cunning plan to allow the forward to run unchallenged to the edge of the box before he intervenes.

Slide 2. Butler still retreats but now appears to try to deal with onrushing striker as though he were a small flightless bird and tries to usher him away from goal.

Slide 3. “Shoo! Go on, away!”.

Slide 4.  Oh well, it’s more or less straight at the keeper, look.

Slide 5. S**t

Do you see anything I’ve missed?  Agree, Disagree, let me know…  More tactical review next time there’s a defensive disaster… See you again next week.


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