Player Ratings - Barnsley (H)
Alex McCarthy - 5 - Distribution was again his downfall in this one, with his kicking being dreadful throughout. However, he can`t be made accountable for any of the goals, two of them were fantastic strikes. You could argue that he shouldn`t have given the ball to Gunter for the first goal, but the defender will rightly take most of the blame.
Chris Gunter - 5 - His worst game all season, made even worse by the back pass that led to the first goal. He seemed to lose all confidence after the mistake and offered nothing going forward, which has been a key feature of his game in recent weeks. Hopefully this won`t knock him back too much and he will carry on his good form previous to this.
Alex Pearce - 6 - I do feel sympathy for Pearce, who is clearly not confident with the ball at this feel - the last thing we want is a mistake by him attempting to play short. I thought he kept O`Grady quite quiet throughout, winning most of his headers against the big striker. Fair play to him coming over to the fans at the end, it took some nerve.
Kaspars Gorkss - 5 - The early pass across the penalty area that went out for a corner set the marker unfortunately for Gorkss, who did not seem confident at all. He wasn`t too bad defensively, but his distribution was absolutely woeful, but certainly wasn`t helped by sarcastic cheers from the fans when he completed a pass.
Jordan Obita - 6 - One of the better performers on the night, despite his youth and lack of experience. Liam Lawrence wasn`t exactly going to run rings round him, so dealt with that comfortably enough, but did also offer his hand going forward. His set pieces were also a threat when Drenthe went off.
Hope Akpan - 5 - Even before this game, the former Crawley midfieler always seemed to be a confidence player. With the crowd on the players` backs, it was never going to go well for Hope. Held onto the ball for too long at times and was punished by an energetic Barnsley midfield. It is amazing how much we miss Guthrie.
Jobi McAnuff - 5 - The skipper was used in an unfamiliar central midfield role and to put it simply, it didn`t work. His passing was slack and despite making good occasional bursts forward, this left Akpan exposed in midfield. It will be interesting to see if he keeps his place this Saturday, but I think there is no better option this moment in time.
Garath McCleary - 5 - Apart from one superb run on the left side, he was very anonymous and ineffective. Considering his crossing is poor, it was never going to work McCleary playing on the left hand side. In the second half he was too narrow to make any sort of impact on the game, with Blackman having the same problem.
Royston Drenthe - 6 - Good energy from Royston, but not enough quality to make the difference like he has in recent weeks. His set pieces were very poor and not too surprised he was hauled off on 70 minutes. Should have taken his chance minutes after the third goal, he does like to put his laces through the ball.
Nick Blackman - 5 - Fairly anonymous in the first half on the right wing, but was moved up front in the second period and had a decent chance to score, but for some odd reason, thought he could lob the keeper with his weaker foot from ten yards. Subbed for Aflie after the third goal went in, should that sub have been made at HT?
Pavel Pogrebnyak - 6 - His touch has been one of his strong points this season, but even that deserted him in this one. I have sympathy with him as he had to go on scraps of hopeless long balls, which is not his forte. The referee also seemed to miss a few fouls on him. Did well to win and score the penalty though.
Adam le Fondre - 5 - He must have touched the ball about five times in half an hour. It is pointless brining Alfie on if he is not going to get the supply. Should have been brought on at half time by Adkins, or even from the start against the bottom side.
Hal Robson-Kanu - 5 - Did nothing of note when he came on, except lose the ball on various occasions. It`s a shame he is yet to justify the new luxurious contract he signed in the summer.
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