Bolton’s shocking form continued away at Sincil Bank with a capitulation in the last 10 minutes seeing Wanderers lose 5-1 when they had been in the game for much of the match. That is not to say that the performance had been good, it had not, but they were at least as poor as the home side had been in a scrappy game played out on a pigsty pitch in shocking conditions.
There are going to be some low ratings here, but I bet you can guess who gets the lowest.
Remi Matthews 3
Awful goalkeeping for the first Lincoln goal and some really strange decision making when it came to both coming out to sweep up loose balls and not coming out to collect crosses. Not much he could do with the other goals but he still conceded 5. I think not getting someone in to act as competition is insane.
Josh Emmanuel 4
Not great. Decent-ish going forward but very poor defensively for the first goal and lost the ball in poor areas. Did make some good blocks to deny Lincoln but probably should have blocked the 3rd which started the capitulation. Needs to get back to where he was, though probably struggling for confidence just like the rest of his team.
Toto Nsiala 3
He’s quick and strong but thrives on having high confidence. Thus, when his head went down he lost it totally. The pass across field that sold Harry Brockbank short and allowed Lincoln to score their 4th was a disgrace. We cannot have a player who cannot lead those around him despite being over 4 years their senior.
Yoan Zouma 6
I thought he was doing well until he was withdrawn at half-time with what looked like a hamstring injury. Had to babysit Liam Edwards who had a mare at left-back and looked assured doing so. Let’s hope he isn’t set for a spell on the side lines.
Liam Edwards 3
Shocking at left-back, better at centre-half but still lost his head during the capitulation. He’s better than this, I am sure of it, but again confidence in the squad is at an all time low. When the 3rd goal went in the defence lost all sense of positioning and he was very culpable of this.
Luke Murphy 4
A poor return to the side for Murphy who, despite playing the ball around more confidently that any of his teammates, did not perform his defensive duties well enough. The gap between defence and midfield was enormous at times and thus Lincoln found space easily to attack. He rarely showed for the ball when the centre-halves were in possession, making it very difficult to play out from the back. Another who is better than this.
Ethan Hamilton 3
I didn’t see the Rochdale game, where allegedly he was very good, but on this evidence I don’t think he’s anything special. Very left-footed, to the point that he cannot pass the ball with the other foot. He is often facing the wrong direction in possession and is therefore forced to pass backwards. He was played at left-back for most of the second half and did OK but in his natural position he didn’t impress.
Ronan Darcy 5
Took his goal very well and was our best player in the first-half, but really struggled in the second period when pushed further back into midfield. He lost almost every 50/50 in dangerous areas, one of which led to the 2nd Lincoln goal which killed our momentum. If played for 90 minutes in his preferred role behind the striker he’s a real asset, he’s a huge hindrance anywhere else.
Joe Dodoo 4
He flits in and out of games and while when he’s on the ball he looks confident and useful, out of possession he may as well not exist. We cannot afford to have a luxury player like this who may score a worldy but also contribute nothing. I want to see his attitude change as he can make us better with more effort. Must say he was very unlucky with the number of fouls on him that weren’t given, however.
Dennis Politic 4.5
Hard to judge, as I thought at times he looked assured, skilful and dangerous, but also his final ball was woeful. The two shots he had were close but were taken from positions where passing would have been better. He works hard, unlike Dodoo, and this is his club so he’ll fight for it, but he needs to improve his output.
Daryl Murphy 5
One of the better performers who’s knockdown for the goal was superb. Gave as good as he got in the air and had no chances to speak of. Wasn’t great but cannot be blamed for our defeat.
Chris O’Grady 2
Awful. Slow, lazy and ineffective. What a ludicrous decision to bring him on and put him out wide. The one time he was free with acres of space down the left he was slower than a tortoise going backwards. Pointless player.
Harry Brockbank 2
Looked way off the pace and out of position. Allowing that cross to come in for the 5th goal was an embarrassment. Why he was brought on to begin with was mad enough, but we’ll get to that.
Muhammadu Faal N/A
Should have been on at half-time for O’Grady.
Manager (if you can use that word):
Keith Hill 0
Right. If you are of a sensitive disposition, I suggest you don’t read this next bit. You have been warned.
This man has to go. Letting Adam Chicksen go, whether for financial reasons or not, was a fucking ludicrous decision. We have no fit left-back, as such we have no balance to our defence that, let’s be honest, was hardly rock solid to begin with. For the love of Jesus what a stupid call that was.
He claims to “know his onions” but doesn’t know how to make a substitution. O’Grady on the wing are you kidding me? Yes, we were being overrun in the midfield but at 2-1 with 10 to go, why did you bring on a right-back for your best creative midfielder and play said right-back at left-back? Insane. And then, as if the confidence of all your players wasn’t low enough, you bring on your new striker at 5-1 just so he is part of the beating too.
This team has no self-belief and had Darcy not scored from one of our only attacks we would have been quite content to take a non-embarrassing beating. The second that 3rd goal went in we were going to lose by as many goals as time allowed Lincoln to score. His job is to instil confidence, and thus far he has instilled an attitude where not only are our players pathetic to the point they give up in games, they also have no discipline, giving millions of free-kicks away and getting needless sending’s-off that cost us results. What does he say to them to build their confidence up? Nothing. He just lambasts them in the press. I’ll tell you what mate, the problems are closer to home. Deluded.
Finally, at the end of yet another disgusting, gutless, embarrassing, most importantly, season-damaging defeat, he claps the players off. He clapped them! I lost my head at that point. What on earth is he thinking. This season is gone, but that doesn’t mean we should just lose every game and then rebuild for League Two, imagine how low the confidence will be by that point! We’ll be starting a “promotion push” having lost every fucking game for 4 straight months!
Football Ventures, he may be from Bolton, but he’s not one of us.