2021/22 Match Day 3 – PearceyPlays #FM19 Journeyman Part 155 – OS4 C2 S3 – Berwick Rangers – Stenhousemuir (A) – 7th August 2021

The Hair goes home.

Today we travel to Stenhousemuir in a crunch game so early on in our season. We started so well in the Betfred but in the in the 2 league games so far we’ve been abysmal at the back and inadequate up top. This will be Morgyn Neill’s first game back at Stenny since his arrival at Berwick in the off-season.

I thought we’d take a look at the team dynamics as we’ve seemed to have fallen apart in the first 2 league games.

Such a large influx of players (potentially 9 first teamers) has stuffed the team cohesion up. I’m thinking this means no more than mid-table at best this season before kicking on next (That’s if I’m still here – if thinks don’t improve/we’re still struggling by Christmas it may be time to start thinking about moving on… In the mean time I’ve scheduled some Team Bonding and Community Outreach sessions to try and get the Cohesion at least moving back to average.

And so we travel to Stenhousemuir for what is potentially a really tough game. They have 4 points, with forward Ouzy See in good form.

Moving to 3 at the back until we become a bit more stable, with wingbacks moved forward a bit, a midfield 3 of DLP & Mezzala’s getting into the half-spaces with Mitchell & Slaven up top, hopefully working towards a playing relationship together. I’m just looking for something else today. Stenny start with a similar formation, a 5-2-3 WB Wide as opposed to our 5-3-2 WB

HT Stenhousemuir 0 Berwick 4 (Davidson 5, Slaven 7, Gardiner 23, McManus 25)

An open start on a tight surface, but we take the lead in the 5th minute – a nice header by Davidson, attacking from the edge of the area, from a Sean Mackie near-post out-swinging corner. And calamity for Stenny in the 7th minute – Greg Hurst (What in god’s name was he doing) passing it straight to Sean Slaven, who tapped in from 8 yards-or-so – he barely had to move, Hurst’s pass was so good 🙂 Couldn’t have dreamed of a better start. Its a very open game. We’re definitely connecting better today though. And it was 3-0 in the 23rd, a great team goal, interplay from Mackie to Davidson to McManus to Slaven, a final pass to an open Gardiner, who spanked it home from 10 yards across the keeper. Gardiner nearly score 2 minutes later, but in the same move Connor McManus gets his first for the club, a thunderbastard from McManus (Who I gave a rocket to for training poorly before the game) from just outside the area, right of centre. 4-0, only 25 gone!!!! Wow! It could be a goal on every attack. Some of the worst football we’ve played to some of the best in just 45 minutes! 4-0 at Half Time, where the fuck did that come from 🙂

FT Stenhousemuir 1 (Hurst 85) Berwick 4 (Davidson 5, Slaven 7, Gardiner 23, McManus 25) Att 481 (83 Away)

Key Highlights

Cameron McGinn on for George Mitchell at half time (Was recommended that he only played 45 before the match), Sean to Poacher, Cameron to PF(S). Stenny looking a bit more dangerous but we are still creating plenty. A really quiet half, we get to 70 minutes in the blink of an eye – Thomas Dempsie coming on for his debut for Sean Mackie. Last sub, Lewis Barr on for Connor McManus, who is looking a wee bit tired. Stenny get a consolation in the 85 from Hurst after a long ball over the top and it finished 4-1.

That was a bit better! Every win will improve morale and cohesion. Edinburgh City look like favourites for the drop early door – twice letting in 5 in their first 3 games.

Next up is a bit of light cup-relief – Away to Senior Affiliate Dundee in the IRN-BRU/Tunnocks 1st Round. See you then.

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