Date:Saturday March 18 2006
When you give up 4 or five chances against the likes of West Brom you may get away with a draw. Against Spurs two was enough. They were the only chances Spurs had against a Blues defence that was 100% better than last week.
Blues gave a full debut to DJ Campbell who along with Emile Heskey made the side look livlier but still lacking that cutting edge.
Heskey set up Campbell on the six yard box with Blues most potent attack of the game but the former Brentford star was just off the pace.
Heskey burst through on the keeper and was brought down on the edge of the area. Urriah Rennie, the ref, in a difficult situation could have given a free kick or a penalty and red carded Dawson the Spurs defender. Was it a dive? Inevitably when pressed into a key decision the ref did nothing.
For forty-five minutes Blues pressed the Tottenham side looking for a Champions league spot but could not open up the Londoners. Pennant and Melchiot on the right were too much for Davids and Lee but crosses and corners forced came to nothing.
With 25 minutes to go and the pattern of the game unchanged. Heskey was forced off with an ankle injury. The Blues had no-one to pressure the clumbsy pairing of Dawson and King. Forssell his replacement looks less and less fit as each game goes by. He is a shadow of the shadow of his former self.
Campbell is not a Premiership striker and was not likely to create anything for himself.
On sixty five minutes Melchiot who had been outstanding both defensivly and in supporting the attack tried an elaborate move near the touch line when a simple clearance would have sufficed. Defoe disposessed the Dutchman and while Blues defence retreated in panic he set up Lennon who scored from 12 yards.
The crowd distastfully began booing Melchiot who to his credit ignored those morons and continued to forage forward.
The Pennant-Melchiot combination is still Blues most likely route to goal.
On 75 the game was settled when Lennon raced free on the right and picked out an unmarked Keane on the far post who sidefooted home.
Blues injury list grows as pressure increases. Pompey drew level when they were able to take advantage of West Ham's reserves. No old pals act there of course.
Albion improved their position again in that they managed a goal against Manchester United.
The pundits still believe Blues will survive.They don't watch them every week.
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Rowett and the Rumour Mill (Thursday November 26 2015)
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