Three 5-0 losses in a row, but do we care? Hell no! With only one addition since Football Ventures’ takeover this week, Jack Hobbs re-signing on a one-year deal, it was always likely that another game with a team of young players would struggle against their much more experienced counterparts.
Nevertheless, I am almost delighted that the result was as convincing in Gillingham’s favour as it was as it has prompted FV to act fast in appointing Keith Hill as Wanderers’ new manager with David Flitcroft as his assistant. It was imperative that we use the remainder of the transfer window as best we can and having a manager in will help us attract players. He may not be who many of us wanted, but it’s hard to argue with both his and his assistant’s experience. Keith Hill’s Super White Army it is.
Here are my player ratings for the first game on the road to redemption:
Remi Matthews 5
Mistake for the 5th goal and looked shaky coming for crosses. He remains a good shot-stopper and prevented us losing more embarrassingly. I hope Ben Alnwick shakes off whatever illness/mental issue he has and quickly so we can see a calmer and more consistent pair of hands between the sticks.
Harry Brockbank 5
His worst performance to date that I have seen. Looked shakier on the ball than usual and often caught out by the pace of the Gills’ attack. We will naturally bring in defensive cover but I hope he gets continued game time under Hill as he has shown a lot of promise and is a natural leader. I wonder if he is feeling the burden of being responsible for many in this young team.
Jack Hobbs 8
A welcome return for Jacky Hobbs, a player who began his Wanderers career very well but whose form fell off a cliff towards the end of last season. He was exceptional in the air and read the game excellently. Some of his last-ditch decision making showed his experience and I am confident he is a cut above League 1.
Yoan Zouma 4
A very bad day at the office for young Zouma. Poor on the ball, lacking in confidence and allowed himself to be bullied by Hanlan for the 3rd goal and Jakubiak all game. He has all the attributes to be a good defender and his knack of getting himself out of trouble is something useful that you can’t teach. However, he is in a rut and could do with a rest or maybe a loan elsewhere. There’s a player in there I know it. Definitely better than Kurt.
Jordan Boon 6
I have heard a lot of negative stuff about Boon but he acquitted himself reasonably well. Unlucky with the own-goal, it was by no means his fault, and could have perhaps done better with allowing Barry Fuller the freedom of Priestfield to deliver crosses galore but he was given no help by Dennis Politic ahead of him in this regard. He isn’t ready for the first team, but he has the physicality and mentality to succeed. Stuck at his task impressively despite the errors.
Jason Lowe 5
It’s finally happened, I’ve lost my patience with Jason Lowe. He is the captain, he is the only member of the team who has had regular Premier League experience and yet he is one of the weakest links. I’m sick of watching him play poor passes and do more pointing than running. The second O’Neil is signed get him in the team for Lowe and give the armband to Brockbank.
Luke Murphy 4
See Jason Lowe but even less effort. Get him out of the team, Mr Hill. Murphy doesn’t want to be here so give him the chance to get out. How on earth does this guy get good reviews from his previous clubs? He doesn’t do anything.
James Weir 6
Not a great display by any means but he cares about what he does and in the right position could well be useful. At the moment he is being shunted from pillar to post to do a job for the team. It is about time we saw him consistently playing in central midfield as his commitment to the cause merits selection in his best position.
Ronan Darcy 5
Couldn’t get into the game and clearly not playing in his favoured position. Was withdrawn for King-Harmes, a natural winger, after being bullied out of the game. I hope he remains around the first team once the influx of signings happens as he has been one of the stars of this team.
Dennis Politic 7
Easily our most potent threat and Gillingham knew that, trying their best to kick him off the pitch. Had our best effort with a lovely free-kick well-saved by Bonham and has very skilful feet. Another who deserves to be in around the side after the new boys come in.
Eddie Brown 7
Should have buried the gift of a chance he got at 0-0 and it was a real shame he didn’t. Worked hard as expected and showed good feet in tight areas. Another who would benefit from a loan at a lower level as his sheer endeavour will serve him well and make him a real fans favourite, but it’s too early for him here and he doesn’t have the natural goalscoring instinct we need.
Callum King-Harmes 6
Looked to attack and drive whenever he got the ball. I would like to see him go on loan too as I see our wing options being plentiful after the end of the window and he is ready for first team football just not with us, yet.
Adam Senior 6
Well done on getting your debut, Adam. Your passion for the club has been a delight to see on social media.
Sonny Graham N/A