• Sharp 60
Saturday, 3rd December 2011
Match Report :
So, Saints struggle without Rickie Lambert and Richard Chaplow. Why is that a surprise? On top of that Saints were sunk by a Billy Sharp goal, the very man who turned down a £3.25m move to the South Coast in the summer.
Before the kickoff there was that moment of realisation that the Lambert 'scenario' Adkins was referring to after the Hull match on Tuesday was actually an injury. With the continuing absence of Chaplow and now Lambert, the sharp end of the team looked unfamiliar.
Since taking over at Doncaster, manager Dean Saunders has brought in eight players on short term deals and loans with the help of the controversial agent Willie Mackay. Of these, Carl Ikeme, Herita Ilunga, Habib Beye, Herold Goulon and Marc-Antoine Fortune all played against Saints, with Fortune providing the cross from which Sharp scored.
From the off, Doncaster's makeshift team more than matched Saint's patched up team. Without Rickie Lambert's link up play and work rate, let alone his goal threat, Saint's looked poor at best.
Saint's had 54% of the play and won 10 corners, but only had 3 attempts on target. The lack of a cutting edge is clear.
The fact that Saints best chance of the game fell to Morgan Schneiderlin speaks volumes. Sharp scored in the 60th minute and ten minutes later first De Ridder was replaced by Holmes and then Cork was replaced by Barnard. It made little difference.
Saints are having a dip and Nigel Adkins will now earn his corn in navigating a way through the Lambertless part of the season.
Attendance : 9,527
21 Hird (yellow card)
42 Goulon (Barnes 46)
10 Sharp (Hayter 87)
32 Fortune (Friend 80)
02 Richardson (yellow card)
06 Fonte (yellow card)
08 Cork (Barnard 72)
33 De Ridder (Holmes 71)