Interesting game, just a couple of things to talk about....
Odd start to the game. Crusaders played some decent stuff for the opening 10 mins and we looked like a side who hadn't played in weeks. Once we got to that mark we took control though. Crusaders had actually started with a relatively conservative line-up with 1 up top and leaving Whyte & Owens on the bench. Despite this we were able to cut through at will with Polworth in particular finding pockets of space in which to play in Mulraney.
I felt we were pretty wasteful at times and should have been 4 or 5 up by the time the half time whistle went. Even though we were dominating it was concerning how much space Crusaders were able to get down the right hand side of our defence. I lost count of the number of times Heatley/Murray found space in that channel. I'd really like to see us move Mckay back inside to partner Donaldson and new right back.
Not sure what was said at half time but the team came out thinking the game was done. No urgency at all and it bordered on being unprofessional. You can give Crusaders some credit for changing it up but if we play like that against a Championship team we will be on the receiving end of a shoeing.
The sending off was a little strange. I'm pretty sure that for his first booking it was Vigurs that committed a foul, it certainly wasn't Mckay. In saying that though the 2nd booking was monumentally stupid. The Crusaders bench unsurprisingly had a part to play in that, Baxter is known for his whinging and theatrics to refs.
Player wise: Ridgers was excellent as was Polworth. Donaldson was OK but seemed to spend time worrying about Warren. Bell and Chalmers despite his goal had poor games. Chalmers seems to let the game pass him by a little too much for my liking, never seems to take it by the scruff. Mulraney was dangerous as ever although the final ball swung from outstanding to atrocious with nothing inbetween. Oakley is a strange player, despite his size he can't win a header and struggles with his first touch. However he's a lot quicker that I thought, has decent movement and runs the channels well. I' not sure what type of player he'd be best beside.
Glad to the win but we made hard work of it. If we hadn't held on we would be asking questions about the mental capacity of the side.