Sunday, 5 November 2017

My Twenty-Seventh 17/18 Game - Coventry City vs Maidenhead United

In typical Coventry City fashion we got back on track last time out by battering free-scoring, table topping Luton Town in their own back yard. Now, ideally you'd want to follow this up immediately with another league game but that wasn't the case. Instead we had our FA Cup tie versus Maidenhead United, a fixture which I've seen advertised as "A potential banana skin" multiple times. Our side we put out suggested we would be taking them absolutely seriously however.

Coventry City Starting XI:





Coventry City Substitutes:


Just the two changes strongly displayed that we want a cup run, and we were boosted by the fact that Wolves have allowed us to play Nazon. This could foreshadow they may be willing to let him stay beyond January. Tom Davies has been unlucky to only make two appearances to date but has looked adequate in them both, equally Jordan Shipley is deserving of a start. Just the free kick last week alone gives him starting rights.

First Half

Train delays and angry stewards not letting people sit in empty seats prevented me from seeing the first few minutes but I can't imagine anything of note occurred. About ten minutes we chased down the Pentney clearance leaving McNulty with a great chance to take the lead. He rounded the final defender, leaving him with an almost open net. However the shot was blocked on the line by Goodman in a last ditch effort to stop his team conceding. The striker did all the hard work and really should have done better with the strike.

McNulty was in the mix again with his effort from 20 yards striking the bar and going over, I feel bad for him, he gets really close but can't seem to find the back of the net as much as we'd like. You can't help but think that it's only a matter of time before he really excels. Jack Grimmer did exceptionally well to nutmeg his opposite number down the right wing and carry on toward the byline, he played a cut back to the penalty spot where Jordan Ponticelli was waiting and found the corner of the net. 1-0 after just half an hour.

Close to half time Jodi picked the ball up on the edge of the City box and sprinted almost the full length of the field, he was outmuscled by Goodman but showed good resilience to continue chasing. Goodman slipped leaving the winger to retrieve the ball and play it back into Ponticelli, very similarly to his first, he slotted in at the far post. On his first home start the 19 year old grabbed a brace before half time, lets ignore the opposition and say we have something special on our hands.

In injury time, we were all witness to a massively embarrassing moment, Massey put in an Oscar winning performance by hitting the ground after a small nudge from Vincenti. You see players going down easily, it's a part of the game, this incident on the other hand was pathetic and he embarrassed himself. Pete gave him a bit of a shoulder to his very own shoulder, nothing hard. The referee didn't buy into it all I don't think, or he did and Doyler worked his magic to lower the punishment, either way, the midfielder received just a booking.

Half Time - Coventry City 2-0 Maidenhead United

Second Half

At the break Vincenti was taken off and replaced by Maxime Biamou, who appeared as if he was playing out on the right, reminding me of Marc-Antoine Fortune's right wing target man role. I don't want to sound harsh, but simply, the visitors weren't very good, meaning for the second half we didn't really need to get out of first gear to see out the victory. I'm not saying we were bad, just slightly complacent.

In Maidenhead's only real chance of the match, Adrian Clifton got in behind our defence with the angle to have a go on goal, he spooned it straight over the bar from about 6 yards. That was as good as they were going to get. With 20 minutes left on the clock we made our final two substitutions with Nazon and Maycock replacing Ponticelli and Shipley respectively. They were adequate enough to see out the victory.

Defensively we were as stable as ever, meanwhile on the attack it was like everyone wanted to be the one who got on the scoresheet next, especially Jodi Jones. In the dying moments McNulty thought he finally had his goal in a game where he deserved one but he has strayed offside to meet Biamou's ball, a pity, but it didn't matter in the end. The match finished with the scoreline as 2-0.

Full Time - Coventry City 2-0 Maidenhead United

We did what needed to be done today, took our chances early on which set us up for the remainder, we didn't really look like conceding at any stage. All in all it was a very routine victory and one that has put into the hat for the next round, I'm not buying into the "We should concentrate on the league" thing, I want a cup run, a nice non-league away game for the experience next up would be nice, I look forward to it.

My Man of the Match - Jack Grimmer - I keep giving him awards, more so than Jodi Jones, but he was great today. Did brilliantly when called upon with his defensive duties, and even chipped in on the attack, picking up an assist. Ponticelli put away a couple of chances yes, but aside from that he didn't do too much, he's got a lot to learn yet, on this occasion I sided with Grimmer.

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