Sunday, 22 February 2015

Fraser was simply superb at Griffin Park

It was fabulous to see some players who had not been able to contribute that much to AFCB's season to have a good chance at Brentford. While Shaun MacDonald got to play a full 90 minutes it was a bit fortuitous, but very pleasing to see Ryan Fraser flying down the wing again in AFCB colours after Matt Ritchie needed to be subbed.
Ryan Fraser at Griffin Park.
The directness of Ryan's running is something that really gets me excited to see and he does make the opposition have to make a decision and commit to a tackle. He is full of energy and I thought he picked the whole team up after half time. Ryan came so close to scoring and it would have been fitting if he had, because he was by far the best AFCB player on the pitch in the second 45 minutes.

I hope that he keeps doing what he does in getting into the box and making defenders try and bring him down, because he will win more penalties more often than not or get the chance to shoot at goal. Mike Dean made an error, perhaps influenced by so many players these days going over easy in the box, but it should not reflect on the young Scotsman's desire to put defenders on the back foot. 

Yann Kermorgant had also picked up a yellow card in the first half for simulation and I think referees have been put in a difficult situation these days if they don't want to give a penalty and believe that they have to book players for a potential dive if they are guessing that the player might have been able to stay on their feet. There is huge debate in the game around the issue of diving, but it is not a thing that Eddie Howe asks his players to do and I don't see AFCB's need to resort to any such tactics. It is simply the running speed and quick changes of direction from players like Ryan Fraser that defenders find hard to cope with and bringing him down is often going to be the outcome when he runs at defences.
Will Ryan get more minutes on the pitch now?
It was Ryan's all round game though that was bright on Saturday. He was quick of thought and his passes were sharp as well often setting up moves and asking questions of the opposition. While Ritchie is likely to be given back his place against Forest, I expect that Eddie Howe will be now thinking that Ryan should have at least 30 minutes in some games now as he has shown what kind of form he is in.

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