Yeovil Town’s defensive copybook got well and truly blotted  at Bromley on Saturday and the goal-scoring issues which have dogged us the past two seasons were still there for all to see.

The result was a 4-1 defeat, the first time we have lost by three goals since last March.

Here’s what Coatesie made of it….


We could not cope with the wind.  The 149 supporters who made the trip to the away end will be under no illusion there was a strong wind at Hayes Lane yesterday – it was blowing across the pitch and directly in to our faces. Bromley presumably recognised it and kept the ball down, albeit on a plastic pitch, whereas we seemed to be overhitting passes, trying long balls and I wonder if the lad in the away end whose baseball cap got tossed in the air ever found it! With the likes of D’Ath, Maguire-Drew and Oluwabori in the starting line-up, keeping the ball down should surely have been the tactic.

What happened to our defensive solidity? Bromley fans must have been wondering how this side had the third (now sixth) best defensive record in the National League. The first goal was a complete freak deflection, there’s not much anyone could do about that, but we looked so far removed from what we have been used to after that.
The inability to simply pick up players and show commitment to get to the ball before an opponent was non-existent and Bromley’s second and third goals. Richards-Everton gave me no confidence and Hunt only seems to perform with a calm head alongside him. Can the loss of Owen Bevan who, regardless of his undoubted quality, is a 19-year-old on loan from a Premier League academy really make that much of a difference?

So many attackers, such little end product. By the end of the match we had five recognised forward players on the pitch – Alex Fisher, Andrew Oluwabori, Jordan Maguire-Drew and the substitutes, Jordan Young and Malachi Linton – and yet chance after chance went begging. We’re undoubtedly able to create chances, Maguire-Drew and Oluwabori both proved that on countless occasions, but what are our attacking players working on in training? The miss by Oluwabori just before half-time was almost unforgivable…..and, yes, I know he’s a young lad starting his career, which is why I said ‘almost’.

There has to be changes. It seems unlikely there’s much which can be done on the training pitch in the 48 hours before we travel to another National League play-off contender, Barnet, so personnel changes has to be the only option. I’m hoping that Bromley was a blip based on the rustiness of not playing since New Year’s Day, but up front we have to do something differently. I go back to the impact ‘Fish & Mal’ made when they came on at half-time in the Boxing Day draw at Torquay. Tuck JM-D in behind them and keep Oluwabori on the bench to bring on and run at them towards the end. Whatever the changes, there has to be changes or it could be a long night on Tuesday.

It’s not you, Mark, it’s not. I heard a couple of comments from the terrace directed against Mark Cooper and seen a few post-match comments on social media to the same effect. Pinch of salt added for the social media comments, of course. Be under no illusion – our predicament is nothing to do with Mark Cooper. Before this game we had gone seven games unbeaten, granted with a number of draws, but under Chris Hargreaves we would be deep in the mire. With a hand tied behind his back by the basket case boardroom issues, Cooper has given us mid-table obscurity over a relegation scrap.

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