Just about everything that hasn’t been working right now was exposed in a miserable second-half showing at Fleetwood Town. After a promising first-half, the more experienced Fleetwood stepped up through the gears to put a Sky Blues side lack in confidence and ideas to the sword via a clinical second-half showing.
The Problems A Lack Of Goals Causes
Three of the four wins we notched in a row last month came after scoring the first goal, our past six winless games have come after we conceded the game’s first goal. Our lack of goals has put the focus on our misfiring strikers, but it is a problem that impacts the whole team, which was what this defeat really became about.
Not scoring puts pressure on the team to keep clean sheets. Any error, any lapse in concentration, any slight misjudgement that puts the opposition throw on goal has the potential to cost us the game. It means that the shape and concentration of the side has to be perfect in order to take points from games – even the best defences in the world don’t keep clean sheets in every game.
That pressure then has a multiplying effect back on the strikers because they are under the spotlight to put away any chance that falls their way. Jordy Hiwula and Conor Chaplin had excellent chances to give us the lead in the first-half, but snatched at their chances and let Fleetwood off-the-hook.
It causes players to second-guess themselves when in promising positions. Even our star performers right now – Tom Bayliss and Luke Thomas – are losing conviction in their ability when they reach the time to pull the trigger or play through a team-mate. Overall, there seems to be a deferral in the responsibility of taking chances.
The three goals conceded came from panicky play around our penalty area. At the other end of the pitch, it was almost entirely unsurprising that we couldn’t even score from a late, meaningless, penalty.