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Thread: Let's get a grip and look forward

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    In The North Stand With All The Old Folk Scouse Don's Avatar
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    Default Let's get a grip and look forward

    We lost one game all be it a big one. All these lads are world class athlete's with high quality coaches on both sides whoever we play. The players are all fit and able to play otherwise it would be dangerous to let them. We have been and are the best team over the last two years and we still are.Small margins win big games.

    Where we do fall down is when we are faced with something a bit different and are not able the change games quick enough without that 'maverick' doing something he is not coached to do.

    I do not believe that the lads are to blame here I think the responsibility lies with the coaching staff and not just Justin Holbrook.I know there is the old addage that the coach cannot cross the white line but he can influence what is done with messages etc. With the benefit of hindsight which is a wonderful thing we should have reviewed our position as soon as Wire announced that Currie was going to be stand off. As soon as I saw that I knew what we were in for and exactly what Wire were going to do having watched them beat Hull in the semi. So I would have varied our game to keep turning wire around with short kicks and grubbers for example but we did not seem to have the ability to change from our previously successful systems.

    Coupled with some extremely poor officiating and 4 returning players who were arguably not match fit we actually contributed to our own downfall.

    We need to get a grip for the next month.

    Players who are fit an in form get a place and we sack off any celebration of the LLS and refocus all our efforts on playing with pace power and guile.

    We MUST find ways to change games and play what is in front of us because it appears in big games we cannot think straight on the field but more importantly on the sidelines. We snookered ourselves with team selection not having a back on the bench able to change the style of play when we need to.

    I am not as upset as I was on saturday we have not been to Wembley or a big final for a long time and we need to learn how to win them so it is arguable that saturday was just part of the learning curve for this team.I am too long in the tooth to have a meltdown over one game.
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    Nice to read some positivity creeping back onto the board, and that was a thoughtful post.

    As I mentioned elsewhere it was the perfect storm.


    Quote Originally Posted by RJM25R View Post
    It was a perfect storm.

    Bad ref decisions, several players having an off day, individual errors leading directly to opposition tries, unfit/ not game ready returnees, Wire playing their game plan with very few errors and 30 degree heat.

    Any of those conditions change and the result could have been very different.
    You could watch every game in this season and last and not see that combination again.

    The amount of dropped ball was unbelievable for us but if I go all “Jon Wells” The gamebreaker was the missed conversion kick.

    At that moment, our tails were up and we would normally kick those 2 points and score again within a few minutes but it wasn’t to be. The Perfect Storm.



    Hindsight is a wonderful thing but I would have had Percy kicking. Someone else mentioned about Coote’s Inconsistency with the boot early in the season and after weeks out it’d be like starting again.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scouse Don View Post
    We lost one game all be it a big one. All these lads are world class athlete's with high quality coaches on both sides whoever we play. The players are all fit and able to play otherwise it would be dangerous to let them. We have been and are the best team over the last two years and we still are.Small margins win big games.

    Where we do fall down is when we are faced with something a bit different and are not able the change games quick enough without that 'maverick' doing something he is not coached to do.

    I do not believe that the lads are to blame here I think the responsibility lies with the coaching staff and not just Justin Holbrook.I know there is the old addage that the coach cannot cross the white line but he can influence what is done with messages etc. With the benefit of hindsight which is a wonderful thing we should have reviewed our position as soon as Wire announced that Currie was going to be stand off. As soon as I saw that I knew what we were in for and exactly what Wire were going to do having watched them beat Hull in the semi. So I would have varied our game to keep turning wire around with short kicks and grubbers for example but we did not seem to have the ability to change from our previously successful systems.

    Coupled with some extremely poor officiating and 4 returning players who were arguably not match fit we actually contributed to our own downfall.

    We need to get a grip for the next month.

    Players who are fit an in form get a place and we sack off any celebration of the LLS and refocus all our efforts on playing with pace power and guile.

    We MUST find ways to change games and play what is in front of us because it appears in big games we cannot think straight on the field but more importantly on the sidelines. We snookered ourselves with team selection not having a back on the bench able to change the style of play when we need to.

    I am not as upset as I was on saturday we have not been to Wembley or a big final for a long time and we need to learn how to win them so it is arguable that saturday was just part of the learning curve for this team.I am too long in the tooth to have a meltdown over one game.
    Not sure I agree. Its still a bloody good achievement to finish top and especially by a distance. Unfortunately we have an end of season cup competition to determine the League, but the side still have a right to take a measure of pride in their accomplishment. Im not sure how this would undermine the team in the play offs.

    On kickers....Agreed on Percival especially after he kicked well at Leeds. Coote does not look a natural at it. Percival has always struck the ball better but my reckoning is he doesn’t like the job full time.

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    Default Let's get a grip and look forward

    Sorry Graham but there is something fundamentally wrong with the club when it comes to these games.

    Iíve not got the stats at hand (Iím sure someone has) but since 2006, we have lost a huge amount of Finals and semi finals. We had the 5 Grand Finals on the bounce plus numerous CC semi finals and play off semi finals. Yes we did win the CC in 07 and 08.

    The fact remains that we go to pieces in the crucial games. Our game plan goes wrong and we have no Plan B. No leaders step up when it matters and we have a mental fragility. I have little confidence now that we will come back and win the GF because in the tight games we donít do anything different and the others know how to play us.

    Holbrook has done well with rotation this year but I feel he got it wrong with playing 4 players who hadnít played in a month, in Cooteís case, he hadnít played since Wigan at H. He clearly wasnít fit but he didnít pick himself.

    Thereís a poor culture at the club when it comes to knuckling down when it matters. I feel we believed our own hype and played like that.

    I have a good mate who is a professional coach in SL and I always recall a conversation we had months ago over a beer. We were talking about Wiganís GF winning team and I was saying that on paper they were weak and that little of those players would get into other top teams.

    He then said put Wigans pack in a phone box with Saints pack and thereís only one team coming out that phone box. On reflection heís right. Itís why Smithies, Partington and Byrne are tough lads and will go on to win trophies. Matty Lees was very close to signing for Wigan before Saints and they messed up with him. They still regret it to this day, he is a Wigan type of player and doesnít really fit the Saints mould.

    Can you see what I mean here? We lack something. Until that changes weíll continue as a brilliant flat track bully team but lose the games that matter.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Reacher View Post
    Sorry Graham but there is something fundamentally wrong with the club when it comes to these games.

    I’ve not got the stats at hand (I’m sure someone has) but since 2006, we have lost a huge amount of Finals and semi finals. We had the 5 Grand Finals on the bounce plus numerous CC semi finals and play off finals. Yes we did win the CC in 07 and 08.

    The fact remains that we go to pieces in the crucial games. Our game plan goes wrong and we have no Plan B. No leaders step up when it matters and we have a mental fragility. I have little confidence now that we will come back and win the GF because in the tight games we don’t do anything different and the others know how to play us.

    Holbrook has done well with rotation this year but I feel he got it wrong with playing 4 players who hadn’t played in a month, in Coote’s case, he hadn’t played since Wigan at H. He clearly wasn’t fit but he didn’t pick himself.

    There’s a poor culture at the club when it comes to knuckling down when it matters. I feel we believed our own hype and played like that.

    I have a good mate who is a professional coach in SL and I always recall a conversation we had months ago over a beer. We were talking about Wigan’s GF winning team and I was saying that on paper they were weak and that little of those players would get into other top teams.

    He then said put Wigans pack in a phone box with Saints pack and there’s only one team coming out that phone box. Ok reflection he’s right. It’s why Smithies, Partington and Byrne are tough lads and will go on to win trophies. Matty Lees was very close to signing for Wigan before Saints and they messed up with him. They still regret it to this day, he is a Wigan type player and doesn’t really fit the Saints mould.

    Can you see what I mean here? We lack something. Until that changes we’ll continue as a brilliant flat track bully team but lose the games that matter.


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    Hard to disagree. A lot of emotional capital has gone into supporting this team in all those matches you reffered to; thats why its a bit rich when some suggest fans just carry on as if nothing happened. The reality is the club have become a laughing stock.

    Every club and its supporters take a measure of amusement in waiting for this team to fail in big games as its happened too many times. Im not sure whether Saints were overconfident on Saturday; to me they looked jittery and almost afraid of losing in that second half. When Coote knocked on it felt like he was left on his own, usually a few players at least try to help out /console their team mates. Instead everyone went into panic mode that second half trying to play rugby at 300mph without thinking.

    Im less bought into your argument on packs but only because of how much Saints have dominated the Wigan pack this one season. However Wigan are improving at the best time and Smithies looks exactly the player Wane would have loved. I think the club will need to start replacing a few older heads in the pack, critical we get this right. The club are also desperate for a Chris Joynt type character IMO.

    Going back to big match bottling, Saints have to work it out for themselves and the coach has to get his tactics right.It really is that simple. As much as some people want to be positive this isnt going to win the big games for the club.
    Last edited by eddiewaringsflatcap; 26th August 2019 at 08:06.

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    Coote could have back heeled that kick over but why have him kicking at all after a knee injury. People all weekend keep on about in hindsight, sorry but the coach and team weren't prepared properly for this game.

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    Quote Originally Posted by eddiewaringsflatcap View Post
    Hard to disagree. A lot of emotional capital has gone into supporting this team in all those matches you reffered to; thats why its a bit rich when some suggest fans just carry on as if nothing happened. The reality is the club have become a laughing stock.

    Every club and its supporters take a measure of amusement in waiting for this team to fail in big games as its happened too many times. Im not sure whether Saints were overconfident on Saturday; to me they looked jittery and almost afraid of losing in that second half. When Coote knocked on it felt like he was left on his own, usually a few players at least try to help out their team mates. Instead everyone went into panic mode that second half trying to play rugby at 300mph without thinking.

    Im less bought into your argument on packs but only because of how much Saints have dominated the Wigan pack this one season. However Wigan are improving at the best time and Smithies looks exactly the player Wane would have loved. I think the club will need to start replacing a few older heads in the pack, critical we get this right.

    Going back to big match bottling, Saints have to work it out for themselves and the coach has to get tactics right. It really is that simple. As much as some people want to be positive this isnt going to win the big games for the club.
    We have dominated their pack admittedly. But the 3 Wigan players Iíve mentioned can all still play for their U19s. Up against Walmsley and Thompson they would struggle and did. But Iím talking more about toughness in particular mental toughness.

    They had a lot of injuries in their pack when theyíve played us this season so in some respects it was to be expected.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Reacher View Post
    We have dominated their pack admittedly. But the 3 Wigan players I’ve mentioned can all still play for their U19s. Up against Walmsley and Thompson they would struggle and did. But I’m talking more about toughness in particular mental toughness.

    They had a lot of injuries in their pack when they’ve played us this season so in some respects it was to be expected.


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    Mate generally I agreed, thats why I mentioned ‘this one season.’ Their forward game is based on brute physicality and its won them the big games in the trenches. I totally got your point. A bit of dog is one of a few things we need to start winning these games and some proper leadership- a Chris Joynt needed more than ever.

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    Quote Originally Posted by eddiewaringsflatcap View Post
    Im not sure whether Saints were overconfident on Saturday; to me they looked jittery and almost afraid of losing in that second half. When Coote knocked on it felt like he was left on his own, usually a few players at least try to help out their team mates. Instead everyone went into panic mode that second half trying to play rugby at 300mph without thinking.
    It's very uncharacteristic of our season. It's like we lose all our senses and get thrown off what got us there and what made us a good side in the 1st place.

    Rugby league is a simple game and in finals you need to complete your sets, kick well and tackle well. You then earn the right to play the game and points will come. We just seem to implode and gift the opposition ball and territory. We did it against Catalans last year and it happened again on Saturday. We just don't appear to have learned which is the biggest concern.

    The Play Offs will luckily give us a couple of cracks to get to OT and we will have to play one or maybe two of the big guns at home. Let's see what the lads have got. They're capable of getting to and winning at OT but we have to adapt to the big games and earn the right to play.


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    The thing we are missing is professionalism and we always have done compared to the likes of Wigan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Reacher View Post
    He then said put Wigans pack in a phone box with Saints pack and there’s only one team coming out that phone box. On reflection he’s right. It’s why Smithies, Partington and Byrne are tough lads and will go on to win trophies. Matty Lees was very close to signing for Wigan before Saints and they messed up with him. They still regret it to this day, he is a Wigan type of player and doesn’t really fit the Saints mould.

    Can you see what I mean here? We lack something. Until that changes we’ll continue as a brilliant flat track bully team but lose the games that matter.

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    Disagree. We didn’t lose because our pack couldn’t get out of a phone box. I rewatched the match yesterday, Thompson was immense in the first half. We were marching down the field most times we had the ball. Walmsley did ok but it was difficult coming back after weeks out. Matty Lees was a huge loss as I said he would be, and looking at Warrington’s bench I thought it was stronger. We didn’t have enough pace/power coming on to give us a lift. Amor and Ashworth are very similar in that they can trundle the ball in but don’t break many lines. Not sure what’s happened to Ashworth but he seems to have built up too much and gone backwards.

    The match was lost because of the errors we made; Knowles, Coote, Walmsley all of whom were returning. It drained us where as Warrington made hardly any. Obvious additions with refs poor calls. We had the chance to come back in the second half, Coote misses an easy kick and that makes our heads drop again, then we knock on.

    Really don’t know where you’ve got this flat track bully team from.

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    Holbrook’s tenure is over soon. The new coach might be another Basil, but he could just as easily be another Simmons.

    We are in the mix still, who knows next season?

    I didn’t think it was possible to be more disappointed than losing 5 grand finals, but it turned out that watching Leeds and Wire in 2012 was infinitely more painful.
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    Quote Originally Posted by reliable sauce View Post

    Really donít know where youíve got this flat track bully team from.
    Probably because we coast through the league games and look like world beaters and then lose the big pressure games.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Reacher View Post
    Probably because we coast through the league games and look like world beaters and then lose the big pressure games.


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    Thats why i'm not keen on the likes of Tia and Pearoux as well as Paulio. They just dont fill me with any confidence when it comes to the crunch.

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    Didn’t get passed the first sentence of “we lost one game”. This isn’t one game, it’s the fifth big game we’ve lost under Holbrook from six, the one we did win was against a part-time team in a game we were poor in, and the five we have lost, we’ve been close in the game in one of them when we lost to Cas in the Play-Off’s due to golden point.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Reacher View Post
    Probably because we coast through the league games and look like world beaters and then lose the big pressure games.


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    And how does that make anyone a flat track bully?

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    Quote Originally Posted by RJM25R View Post
    Nice to read some positivity creeping back onto the board, and that was a thoughtful post.

    As I mentioned elsewhere it was the perfect storm.




    You could watch every game in this season and last and not see that combination again.

    The amount of dropped ball was unbelievable for us but if I go all ďJon WellsĒ The gamebreaker was the missed conversion kick.

    At that moment, our tails were up and we would normally kick those 2 points and score again within a few minutes but it wasnít to be. The Perfect Storm.



    Hindsight is a wonderful thing but I would have had Percy kicking. Someone else mentioned about Cooteís Inconsistency with the boot early in the season and after weeks out itíd be like starting again.
    I though he slipped slightly. They'd randomly watered that half of the pitch that was in shade all day.

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    Quote Originally Posted by reliable sauce View Post
    And how does that make anyone a flat track bully?
    I suspect the analogy would be bread and butter League games are the flat track and the games that matter are the uneven, green tops.

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    Quote Originally Posted by reliable sauce View Post
    Disagree. We didn’t lose because our pack couldn’t get out of a phone box. I rewatched the match yesterday, Thompson was immense in the first half. We were marching down the field most times we had the ball. Walmsley did ok but it was difficult coming back after weeks out. Matty Lees was a huge loss as I said he would be, and looking at Warrington’s bench I thought it was stronger. We didn’t have enough pace/power coming on to give us a lift. Amor and Ashworth are very similar in that they can trundle the ball in but don’t break many lines. Not sure what’s happened to Ashworth but he seems to have built up too much and gone backwards.

    The match was lost because of the errors we made; Knowles, Coote, Walmsley all of whom were returning. It drained us where as Warrington made hardly any. Obvious additions with refs poor calls. We had the chance to come back in the second half, Coote misses an easy kick and that makes our heads drop again, then we knock on.

    Really don’t know where you’ve got this flat track bully team from.
    Spot on RS.

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    In big games we remind me of a 3rd division north west counties team. We talk it up, look flash in tick and pass, train hard all week with drills, moves, game plan but throw us into a real tough game of high intensity and all that planning and game plan goes out of the window and we play like a bunch of headless chickens. Amateurish.
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    Quote Originally Posted by fishy3005 View Post
    In big games we remind me of a 3rd division north west counties team. We talk it up, look flash in tick and pass, train hard all week with drills, moves, game plan but throw us into a real tough game of high intensity and all that planning and game plan goes out of the window and we play like a bunch of headless chickens. Amateurish.
    And don't forget the often repeated "we'll learn from this".

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    Quote Originally Posted by zippy View Post
    And don't forget the often repeated "we'll learn from this".
    Yep that too. Don’t get me wrong, ive no doubt the players are hurting. I feel more sorry for the fans though. The fans turn up to big games and don’t deserve what they witness. Over the past 4 years we have crashed out of the cup with heavy defeats to Hull, Cas and Catalans. Magic weekends too. Fair enough the magic weekend isn’t for a trophy but its a big occasion for the fans travelling over for the weekend. We haven’t turned up to a number of those games too. Warrington have belted us their a few times and even Huddersfield spanked us in one of them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reacher View Post
    Sorry Graham but there is something fundamentally wrong with the club when it comes to these games.

    Iíve not got the stats at hand (Iím sure someone has) but since 2006, we have lost a huge amount of Finals and semi finals. We had the 5 Grand Finals on the bounce plus numerous CC semi finals and play off semi finals. Yes we did win the CC in 07 and 08.

    The fact remains that we go to pieces in the crucial games. Our game plan goes wrong and we have no Plan B. No leaders step up when it matters and we have a mental fragility. I have little confidence now that we will come back and win the GF because in the tight games we donít do anything different and the others know how to play us.

    Holbrook has done well with rotation this year but I feel he got it wrong with playing 4 players who hadnít played in a month, in Cooteís case, he hadnít played since Wigan at H. He clearly wasnít fit but he didnít pick himself.

    Thereís a poor culture at the club when it comes to knuckling down when it matters. I feel we believed our own hype and played like that.

    I have a good mate who is a professional coach in SL and I always recall a conversation we had months ago over a beer. We were talking about Wiganís GF winning team and I was saying that on paper they were weak and that little of those players would get into other top teams.

    He then said put Wigans pack in a phone box with Saints pack and thereís only one team coming out that phone box. On reflection heís right. Itís why Smithies, Partington and Byrne are tough lads and will go on to win trophies. Matty Lees was very close to signing for Wigan before Saints and they messed up with him. They still regret it to this day, he is a Wigan type of player and doesnít really fit the Saints mould.

    Can you see what I mean here? We lack something. Until that changes weíll continue as a brilliant flat track bully team but lose the games that matter.


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    It's 17 semi finals and finals since 2006

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    Just to give this a bit of perspective,how many finals have Warrington lost before they won this one ? You need to get to the big games to get big game experience and that paid off for them. I've read countless Holbrook is to blame posts and we need a new coach,well we are getting one so people calm down a bit. We have a very good team and some very good young players coming through,our time will come.

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    And there you have it
    Quote Originally Posted by reliable sauce View Post
    Disagree. We didnít lose because our pack couldnít get out of a phone box. I rewatched the match yesterday, Thompson was immense in the first half. We were marching down the field most times we had the ball. Walmsley did ok but it was difficult coming back after weeks out. Matty Lees was a huge loss as I said he would be, and looking at Warringtonís bench I thought it was stronger. We didnít have enough pace/power coming on to give us a lift. Amor and Ashworth are very similar in that they can trundle the ball in but donít break many lines. Not sure whatís happened to Ashworth but he seems to have built up too much and gone backwards.

    The match was lost because of the errors we made; Knowles, Coote, Walmsley all of whom were returning. It drained us where as Warrington made hardly any. Obvious additions with refs poor calls. We had the chance to come back in the second half, Coote misses an easy kick and that makes our heads drop again, then we knock on.

    Really donít know where youíve got this flat track bully team from.

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