If ever there was a game to get our season back on track, for the players to demonstrate some sense of desire and for the manager to show some tactical nous, this was it.
Sadly, predictably, Tranmere turned in another unacceptable display. For many fans in the tent after the game, across social media and forums, it seems to have been the final straw.
This time however, it was made much worse because it was a derby against an old foe Wrexham. With more than 10,000 in attendance, the hopes of the vast majority of those present would soon turn to the inevitable acceptance that we’re a million miles off being anything resembling a decent team.
Save for a brief moment of handbags in the first half, there wasn’t even any fight from Rovers. The absolute minimum requirement for any Tranmere team is some heart, spirit and fight, especially in a local derby.
Instead, it was all very passive. From the first whistle to the last, Wrexham dominated. We’re not going to go blow-by-blow with a match report, it was bad enough to watch first time around without reliving it in writing.
The deciding moment came in the second half, Rovers undone at a set-piece (shock) allowing Wrexham’s Hayden a free header into the bottom corner.
For all of the substitutes made and hand gestures performed by Ian Dawes, Rovers just don’t seem to have a plan in any game. They lack shape, have no tactical direction and no urgency. The ball is often passed between centre backs who stand around with nothing to aim for. If it doesn’t go to the full-backs then it is inevitably lumped up top, hoping poor Connor Jennings can suddenly turn into a target man and win every ball.
It’s garbage. Sure, there have been the briefest moments this season where we will put a nice passage of play together, but that’s it. Nothing of any substance. No penetration. We look easy to play against.
But then, did any Tranmere fan actually anticipate anything better when Dawes was appointed in the summer? I highly doubt it.
A few years ago the club was flying. Back-to-back promotions, a real synergy and togetherness right across players, staff, and fans.
Yesterday, the home crowd felt lethargic. We’ve had the hope beaten out of us. We turn up because we love the club and are desperate to see some cause for optimism. We longed for the team to turn up and take it to Wrexham, while deep down knowing what was going to happen.
Despite paying some of the most expensive season tickets in the league – if not the most expensive – we are being served up dross, with yet another unbalanced and incomplete squad, led by an inexperienced manager.
It needs to change as soon as possible, otherwise we will be sleep-walking back to non-league football.