Date: 11th August 2009 at 9:52pm
Written by:

Kevin Blackwell blasted his fringe players after A Marc Richards double was enough to give Port Vale a Carling Cup First Round upset, with the help of Blades ‘keeper Ian Bennett.

Richards free-kick with half an hour remaining was seemingly comfortable for Bennett, but the ex Birmingham stopper allowed the ball to just slip through his fingers, to put Vale back into the lead.

Despite criticising many of his players, Kevin Blackwell did show some sympathy to the goalkeeper: “What can I say about it? That sort of thing happens to all goalkeepers at some time in their career and I know Ian is too experienced and competent to allow that to knock his confidence.

“We let him down really because we had enough chances to have helped him out by winning anyway. But people won’t remember the chances we missed, just the goalie’s mistake.”

Unfortunately, the second half, when the Blades were behind, followed a very similar pattern to last year; direct play, chances, but no quality to finish them off.

Henderson was unable to convert from close range, and saw his effort cleared off the line; Howard, Robertson and Treacy were also prevented by the agility of Martin.

The Blades had been on top in the early exchanges, but it was Micky Adams’ side who went in front twenty minutes in. Taylor’s good work on the left was cut back by Loft, and Richards was there to stroke home to put the visitors in front.

It appeared early on that the Blades would have a challenge on their hands, with goalkeeper Chris Martin in fine form. First saving from Sharp, and then deflecting Reid’s deflected cross over the bar.

The Blades did finally beat Martin with just over ten minutes of the first half remaining. Little and Quinn exchanging passes out wide, before the ball fell to Sharp, who turned in the box and fired high into the Vale goal.

There was just one last scare in the second half for the Blades, Ian Bennett dropping a cross, but it was eventually cleared by the Blades defence.

Player Ratings

Ian Bennett
Chances of playing Saturday: 1/10

Bunn and his “sticky” hands will be back in.

Ryan France
Chances of playing Saturday: 5/10

Walker back in the team, France will face competition from Cotterill and Little

Leigh Bromby
Chances of playing Saturday: 3/10

Nothing particularly wrong with Bromby, but Morgan will be back in the side.

Matt Kilgallon (c)
Chances of playing Saturday: 10/10

Captain for the night, and providing an injury isn’t picked up, he’ll be first on the team sheet.

Andy Taylor
Chances of playing Saturday: 9/10

Not only is there little competition at left back, but Taylor has put two satisfactory displays in so far.

Glen Little
Chances of playing Saturday: 5/10

If performance is to go by, then Little would be given a start against the Hornets, but can the veteran play two games in a week?

Brian Howard
Chances of playing Saturday: 7/10

With another under par display from Stephen Quinn, Blackwell could be tempted to partner Howard alongside Montgomery.

Stephen Quinn
Chances of playing Saturday: 6/10

The manager appears reluctant to break up the Montgomery/Quinn partnership in the league, but surely Quinn cannot be expected to keep his place in this sort of form.

Kyel Reid
Chances of playing Saturday: 4/10

Reid looked lively, and certainly has pace, but Treacy appears closer to the finished article and will probably keep his place.

Darius Henderson
Chances of playing Saturday: 9/10

Was brought off early to save him for the weekend no doubt, and will perhaps partner £3million man Ched Evans in attack.

Billy Sharp
Chances of playing Saturday: 5/10

Did what he does best last night; made space in the box and fired home. Evans will probably get the knock on Saturday, but should fitness become an issue, Sharp will be knocking on the door.

Jordan Robertson
Replaced Henderson (56)

Keith Treacy
Replaced Little (68)
Replaced Quinn (81)

Kevin Blackwell
“I gave some players opportunities after they have knocked on my door asking why they were not playing. Now I can turn round and say ‘that’s why’.

“Nobody bashed my door down tonight. I have been saying that I need another two or three and this performance proved it. Some of them showed that they are not up to it when the chips are down and I will clear some out.”


22 Replies to ““Why aren’t you playing? That’s why!””

  • Oooh look, a wendy on the site. You beat Rochdale and your over for a game of brag? Not bothered about last nights result so long as we win saturday. You can stick the cups for me but I wish the club would be straight with the poor buggers that turned up last night!!

  • I dont understand Blackwell, looking at that side theres Bennett(who to be fair was a toss up with Bunn for first choice before Boro’) Bromby and Sharp, the rest are first team and HIS new signings so whats he on about knocking on the door and clearing everyone out?

  • The real worry was after Benno threw the ball in his own net, the team went completely to pieces. The players Blackie is referring to are Quinn and Howard, both need clearing out.

  • Once again we fell apart after going behind! We had 25 minutes to atone for Benno’s mistake and didn’t really create a clear cut chance other than long shots. Can’t agree with your Bromby “didn’t do anything wrong” comment Sheps. He gave the ball away in the box early on and had to race back to atone for it, he was at fault for their first goal by watching the ball sail over his head and he nearly gifted them a third with a terrible header back to the keeper. Now I’ve made it quite obvious that I’m not Bromby’s biggest fan but after last nights performance he’d struggle to get into Vale’s side for Sat!!!

  • the cup games are a totally different priority to the league games for us so this result doesn’t affect me at all – nevertheless we should have done a lot better against a very poor side especially at home too. as i’ve said before we just ain’t good enough. the first 10 games of the season will spell out what sort of season we are going to have – and i can more or less feel it in my water whats going to happen this season. i’m going for 8th placed finish for us come may.

  • sounds like a night when everything went wrong. I’m not usually a doom and gloom merchant but is does feel like we’re a side struggling to fight against a general malaise. We need an attacking player to step up and really go on a run of good matches to give ourselves confidence going forward and instill a bit of fear in the opposition. Maybe that man is Ched Evans. KB has a lot to prove to me after his near capitulation in the days after wembley. If he doesn’t really want it the players never will.

  • We wouldn’t have got Wednesday though, because teams were seeded. They’ll be full of themselves if they beat Vale though.

  • It only matters in the league Sheps. Pigs were how many points behind us last season? If they get ahead of themselves just ask em how many people turned up to paint the stand of the massive club?

  • Me? No I don’t do that. Not a self publicist. I listened in my usual mixture of shock at the general hilarity at how good Unitedites have become at overreacting. Before you ask, I am not Brian either 🙂

  • BFL, i tuned in last night but didnt ring up myself. Why did you ask? Brian the blade (if he really is a blade) was talking some utter crap again. He might be upset but blaming the manager was stupid. The guy has THE best record in the division as i have been saying for months. The daft thing is, if Cotts, Walker, Morgan, Monty, Chedder & Ward come in and we win our next 2 home games, the atmosphere will suddenly change and everyone will be talking about going up…..

  • Bring on the vale, we’ll show you how to do it guys with some proper on the ground football. And by the way whilst you guys are getting your stadium out of the toy box, the owls paint the massive stadium with pride. While we’re in this stable but albeit debt situation, its just another great business move from our true blue positive thinking chairman. You lot cant deny we’ve got a manager who’s doing a great job with limited funds, it just a matter of time before the Mighty Wednesday rise again. Good look KB for the rest of the season we love Ya, and no we dont want Billy LOL

  • Good stuff MW. Your manager is indeed a genius at making a silk purse out of a sows ear. I am pleased you paint your stadium with pride. The thought of you all out there (how many was it again) while we pay someone else to do it makes my heart burst with envy for you.

    In all seriousness, your manager is decent. I like Laws a lot. Decent bloke as well.

    Your chairman is a clown though. Pretend money, pretend investors. How many indian and chinese delegations were at Hillsborough last saturday looking on with interest? I hear that Apu off the Simpsons wanted some free tickets so LS took him up on it to make it look like you had fancy foreign investors around.

  • Bet that massive crumbling old stadium looked really smart with 6000 in on Tuesday, all those nice (faded) blue seats. And since when did a £30m debt equal stability? You are having trouble just servicing the interest charges never mind reducing the capital debt! The reality is that without big money coming in, Wednesday will be in the same position for the next ten years. As for Strafford, he promises big money injections which dont happen and gives away valuable revenue on shirt sponsorship then paints the stands while little teams like Plymouth and Notts County attract big foreign money ! What a joke he is.

Your Comment