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Plymouth 2 Northampton 0

I know I should have embarked on a 600 mile round trip to the land of feral black pudding for a Tuesday night football fix, but to be honest with Argyle reducing that trip by 99% and the prospect of checking out a couple of ex-players, Home Park was my destination last night.

Expectations were not overly high - two sides in the relegation zone , a strong wind, both sides playing a deep lying 451. A classic was not expected. Expectations were duly delivered.

Northampton truly dreadful - small slow lone forward unsurprisingly got nowhere and sole attacking ploy seemed to be a long crossfield ball to a winger (with it appears approx. 20 yard either side margin of error) and on the few occasions he got it, he would then hoof it over the bar. Perhaps he thought he was playing rugby. it was quite bizarre.

Matt Ingram - largely untroubled apart from two free header goals he could do nothing about.

Joel Grant - looked tidy on Plymouth's wing without ever looking over threatening

Matt Grimes - big things expected of this lad when he moved from Exeter to Swansea for big money - looked neat enough but nothing special. Disappointing.

Aaron Pierre - star of the show but not for the right reasons. I watched him closely. Even in the pre match warm up he looked a strangely isolated figure detached from his teammates. Looked physically far less imposing than before somehow. Won a header or two, poor on the ball, lost his man at a first half set piece giving him a free header goal. Weak free header from in the six yard box squandered northamptons one on-target effort all match. Start of second half gave away an unnecessary clumsy foul down the channel before losing his man again from the freekick for another free header goal. Subbed off on the hour for another centreback - no injury or formation change involved. Chat to a couple of Northampton fans tells me that they are not impressed with him all season.

Something looks very wrong with Mr Pierre. Wild DevC prediction of the week, a phone call from GA around Christmas, wouldn't be totally surprised to see him back at AP on loan in January.

Quite relieved when the bloke with the whistle finally gave us all permission to go home. I will not be rushing back.


  • Interesting one with Pierre. I believe if we had him this season we would be much higher up the table (and probably wouldnt have signed El-Abd). I dont know what has gone on there, but he would be a welcome addition

  • Not by the ones booing him last season I venture @Tom

  • edited November 2017

    Pierre back would probably be the last bit of the jigsaw to give top 3 a real go.
    No chance in the slightest though, firstly he has a 3 year deal there, and secondly, it'd be a real admission of failure to come back at the first opportunity unfortunately.

    Whatever positives El-Abd brings, watching him having to climb and grapple with strikers half a foot taller than him is quite uncomfortable. He gives away so many free kicks and headers.

  • If we had Blackman in goal this season we would get promoted automatically

    we have conceded so many goals from crosses going into the back post because teams have done their homework and know that Brown won't come to collect them

    I'd be looking to get a top class loanee goalkeeper in in january


  • It's an interesting one this, isn't it, in respect of both Pierre and Blackman. I mean, after a shaky first four or so games, Brown has been blameless and occasionally very, very good, doing everything one could reasonably ask of a 'keeper and sometimes more. And yet, I agree that had we Blackman, we'd be a much better team for the reasons @eric_plant gives. It seems a little irrational to say that, and perhaps a little unfair or unkind to Browny but I think most of us reading this would be nodding in agreement (and not just, this time, because I'm totally egocentric).

    Pierre I'm a little less sure about. We'd obviously be stronger at the back for his presence and I'm a bit bemused he seems to be struggling at Northampton. I'm less sure that we haven't gained a little something in footballing terms with his being replaced by El Abd.

  • Totally agree with Mr Plant on the view that opposition clubs all known Browns weakness to the long cross to the back post. And also share Mr Devc theory that we may well see the return of Aaron Pierre. Especially when he has been spotted at Adams Park on a number of occasions this season.

  • Stop it now, you're getting me hopeful! Morgan constantly hung about here after leaving, and he was never coming back.

    However, I'm not quite sure when people started believing distribution was some sort of key characteristic in a league 2 centre back. Maybe Mawson spoilt us, with people not realising he was a real standout, once a decade type player to have at this level.

    Strength, heading ability and speed for me are the 3 main things. Pierre had all In spades, El Abd has perhaps one of the 3.

  • I'd love Pierre to come back. but not sure we would be his first choice if he got loaned out after the whole headbutting thing.

  • The Club treated him very well over that issue IMHO, so he needn't worry.

  • @ValleyWanderer it won't be the club booing him though will it?

  • Why would anyone possibly boo Aaron Pierre?

  • Personally I would have him back tomorrow but I very much doubt we will see him return.

  • In the nicest possible way, I, too, hope not to see him back.

  • @eric_plant said:
    Why would anyone possibly boo Aaron Pierre?

    I don't know, maybe if he headbutted you or one of your mates?

  • I'd make him captain

  • I'd boo my mate for being such a knob in the first place.

  • @DevC said:
    I'd boo my mate for being such a knob in the first place.

    Probably why you appear not to have many....

  • I'd have him back in an instant btw, but I can fully see why some people wouldn't. I wouldn't support/ might boo anyone that physically assaulted a mate of mine because they insulted them.

  • @username what would you do if your mate called Gareth a gypsy ****?

  • If I was mates with someone who drunkenly abused my own team's players, I'd headbutt myself.

  • I would look at it from AP's point of view...would you want to play in front of people who would boo you...even if only a small but vocal group of true fans who pay your wages, create the atmosphere, get to shout at you in the street, etc etc

  • @Wendoverman said:
    username what would you do if your mate called Gareth a gypsy ****?

    There's a difference between racist abuse and generic swearing for one.

    And I didn't say I agreed with giving out abuse, I'd tell my hypothetical friend to shut his mouth, but resorting to violence would mean I wouldn't support that player.

  • Please let's not start this conversation again.

  • George Stokes shouldn’t have given whatever abuse he did to Pierre, Pierre shouldn’t have reacted, Stokes shouldn’t have then posted about it on social media. But it’s all done now.

    It’s unlikely Pierre comes back, but then it was unlikely that Stewart would come back too. Pierre would be one of our best players if he did return.

  • Sorry @HCblue I know...young man...learned his lesson...reformed character

  • I wonder if the chap has learnt his lesson.
    Or whether he now limits his abuse to the safety of the mob.

    I can't believe Pierre really intended to hurt the chap. A colossus of a bloke with any sort of force would have done a little more damage than the photo the kid posted at the time, which looked like he'd dabbed a spot of strawberry jam on his nose.

  • Not really the point though

  • Let's just say he's not coming back and draw a veil...and get back to worrying why we don;t got told things by the Trust/Club/Gareth/Scott Kashket's surgeon.

  • Or psychiatrist

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