Keir Bradwell sums up the players’ individual performances in marks out of 10 for the games at Loftus Road and St Andrew’s a few nights earlier…
Mannone – 7
Not at fault for the goal at all, and made some fantastic interceptions. My Man of the Match, if only because he occasionally does some Neuer-esque challenges, which are fun.
Vergini – 5
Did well in defence, but wasn’t up to scratch going forward, at least not in comparison to some of his recent performances. (Isn’t that what he was bought for? – Ed)
O’Shea – 5
Reasonable. Hardly a heroic performance by any stretch, although I thought he did well to contain Austin for the majority of the game. (though not when it counted—Ed)
Brown – 7
Gets a point purely for the whole bandage thing (please don’t mention Guinness!), and was brilliant at times, winning a few last-ditch challenges and proving to be, yet again, a rock at the heart of our defence.
van Aanholt – 7
Excellent. I’ve been a fairly harsh critic on van Aanholt this season, but he looked very good at QPR. Was our biggest creative outlet throughout the game, although that’s somewhat alarming, given he’s a defender. Very nearly earnt my Man of the Match award.
Cattermole – 5
Got (as I’d predicted!) rattled by Mutch and Barton and was far short of his usual standards. I think it does prove, however, how important he is to this side. One bad day, and the rest of the team is looks poor too. Not his fault, at all, but is one of the most underrated midfielders in the league and really, really, should’ve been in that England squad.
Larsson – 5
Ran and ran and ran and ran, but offered very little once he’d reached their penalty area. He must work on passing and his delivery; he’s quite limited in that regard.
Rodwell – 6
Underwhelming. Still not fully fit, but I’d hoped to see a lot more from him.
Wickham – 6
The best of our attacking trio by far, but still off the pace. Was quite a lot to handle, but seemed devoid of ideas. To be fair to him, he’s stuck out wide and must be moved centrally at Tottenham.
Fletcher – 4
If Wickham is moved centrally, it’ll come at a cost to Fletcher’s starting place, and rightly so. He’s been very, very poor for the last few weeks and that spell continued at QPR. Have no idea why Giaccherini or Buckley didn’t start ahead of him. Very frustrating.
Johnson – 4
Genuinely forgot Johnson was on the pitch until I saw him take a corner. Hugely uninspiring.
Giaccherini – 6
Good, again. Always seems to cheer the team up when he comes on from the bench, and, alongside van Aanholt, offered the most threat of anyone on the pitch while he was playing. Should be given the opportunity to start.
Buckley – 5
Should’ve won us a penalty, but other than that had very little impact.
Altidore – 6
I like him, I really, really do. He’ll “come good”, eventually. A little bit of faith is required.
Also! I’d completely forgotten about Birmingham, so here are my player ratings from Wednesday evening.
Pantilimon – 5 – not great, but let down by his back-line.
Vergini – 6 – impressive.
O’Shea – 5 – think he needed a rest, to be honest.
Brown – 7 – man of the match, excellent.
Jones – 3 – really poor. Extremely clumsy and way off the pace.
Larsson – 5 – did okay, nothing special.
Gomez – 6 – wasn’t great outside of the goal, although that goal was excellent.
Bridcutt – 4 – seemed to struggle with the physicality of the game.
Johnson – 6 – scored, while…
Altidore – 7 – …was desperately unlucky not to. Was genuinely very good.
Wickham – 6 – Also scored, although I wish he’d passed it to Altidore, who’d have had an open goal.