I don’t really feel that anyone deserves to be crowned as man of the match for this inexplicable 4-3 loss to Queens Park Rangers. But I said I would do it so here we go!
There were some potential candidates. Liam Feeney started brightly creating one and scoring another, but he then lost the ball in the middle of the park and watched as QPR created their second of the afternoon.
Ben Amos made some good saves despite the four conceded having no chance particularly with their exceptional third; but he did spill the ball for their second so again rather removed himself from contention.
I felt though that Gary Madine had a solid game. He added his second goal in as many games early on in the game, giving credence to the view that once he got off the mark the goals would flow. Also justifying the Gary Madine goal machine chant, or Gary machine goal Madine as a kid behind me was saying.
In addition to this he won much of what was thrown his way both in the air and on the ground. He was able to find another player whenever there was one on hand, although frustratingly this was not always the case.
He showed his ability to bring others in the game, and hopefully as Max Clayton gains a better understanding with Madine more of those flicks can go towards him. He was though once or twice maybe a little timid on the ball near the edge of the QPR area though this is just a minor quibble.
His only weakness shown in the game was his shooting with the boot. He had two shots. One of which appeared to have been struck by a particularly timid mouse straight at former USA number one Rob Green. The other on the volley went out closer to the corner flag than the goal.
This means I think it is fair to say that if he is to score a few goals this season, maybe even the 20 that Rob has claimed he will, then they will at least in the most part be scored from the head.
There was one moment of worry though when he decided to bring the ball down on the edge of our penalty area rather than just clearing it. But Bolton moved the ball away from danger well so it all worked out for the best.
Hopefully something like that won’t back fire on him, but as long as it doesn’t it can certainly be classed as good play.