Often Partisan

Knocking Wood?

One thing I’ve been surprised to read about recently is people knocking our on-loan Kiwi goalscorer Chris Wood for not being “good enough as a footballer”. You’d think a guy who’s got eight goals in eleven games for Blues including a perfect hat-trick against Millwall would be getting more plaudits – but weirdly, there is definitely some criticism of him.

When I tipped Chris Wood as a potential loan signing back in June, I admitted at the time that the Brighton fans who’d seen him last season had said he wasn’t the finished product; he’d missed a few chances, he wasn’t quick but he got a decent enough average score in the local newspaper. To be fair, I don’t think that they were far wrong – the game against Nacional was proof positive that Wood is a rough diamond, and that he’s not the finished article yet.

Still, I have to confess I can’t see why people are slating him. Last season there were a lot of (justified) moans about how our strikers didn’t score enough goals – something Chris Wood has been doing in spades. It’s a fact that some strikers just don’t do much other than bag goals – you only have to look back to Stern John (8 in 16 in the Championship which took us to the playoffs) who was pretty languid outside the box yet had the touch, the vision and most of all the required luck to stick it in the onion bag frequently. Stern John copped it for being “lazy”, but the truth is if you have a player in your team who will score chances, then they’re worth their place however lazy they are.

I will accept that one thing that has to be taken into account is the change in the way Blues play; we’re nowhere near as solid at the back or maybe even in midfield, but unlike the last few seasons we actually create a fair few chances each game. I do wonder how many goals Cameron Jerome would get with our current attacking verve – would he still be fluffing chances or would he blossom with decent service? It’s something we’ll never know. I guess the thing that has to be pointed out is that chances are created not only by getting the ball into the right areas, but having the strikers in the right areas to receive the ball – and that is something I think Chris Wood has – that goalscorer instinct.

I sincerely hope the deal has been done to keep Wood on loan until January at least; it must be a good move for him in that he’s in the first team and scoring goals – it suits Blues because Wood is scoring goals … and it suits Albion because one of their young players is getting game time, experience – and is scoring goals. In short, everybody is happy. If his all-round game needs a bit of work on, then so be it – hopefully Wood will continue with his purple patch of goals and Blues will start moving on up to the right end of the table. The kiwi confirmed yesterday that his goal celebration is a “NZ” in honour of his home country – I hope we see it a lot more in the future.


34 Responses to “Knocking Wood?”

  • Bombay Blue says:

    Don’t know why you are surprised at criticism of Wood or any other player, Blues fans are football experts aren’t they? and you yourself are quite happy to articulate your opinions on blues, players performances, manager tactics and selections. But hey isn’t that part of football.

    I do agree that most strikers (including Cameron) will score goals in a team that is creating chances which is the most important change at St Andrews this year.

    Hopefully Wood will remain with us and continue scoring, although we should not be surprised given the chances we are creating if Zigic, King and a few others chip in with goals. Let’s hope our midfield creativity (sadly lacking under McLeish) continues.

  • Gareth says:

    I think it’s just a case of some people wanting to moan about something. I had 2 guys behind me and 1 guy in front of against Nacional at home, the two guys were constantly slating Wood every time he touched the ball, the guy in front stayed in his seat, arms folded for the whole game, shouting that Wood was rubbish and should be sent back. Not a peep from them when he made it 3-1. As well all know, that was the first of 8 goals he’s bagged since then. Hopefully that’s kept them silent.

    There are just some players that certain ‘fans’ will choose to slate immediately. I knew Guirane N’Daw was going to get it, before he’d even played, I knew these people had already chose not to like him, and from what I’ve seen, it seems to be true.

  • Bluesparks says:

    I must admit, I was one who had not a good word for Chris. Woods at the beginning of the season. Carthorse I cal;led him , who couldn’t ‘trap’ a ball. HOWEVER he has proved me wrong and I can only liken him to another ‘clumsy’ goal scorer we had many yearsago…JACK LANE was his name
    and he proved an asset to the team. Many of the old timers will remember him…Best of Luck to Chris. and Blues…………….

  • magpie33 says:

    It really is mental, who are these ‘fans’?

    I think the moaning is like the hooliganism that was once rife …it’s got nothing to do with the game, just closed minded people acting out their own frustrations.

    Compared to our previous main striker Jerome, Wood is Maradona in my eyes… and at only 19 has a geat future.


  • Tony D says:

    What do people expect? If we get a young player on loan, he will by definition not be the finished article. That’s the whole point of the loan system – to give young players the game time they wouldn’t get at their parent club, giving them the opportunity to develop, mature and improve their game. Wood is improving all the time, has a good attitude, and is scoring goals. I’d say that’s a pretty succesful loan. Hopefully we can keep him for longer.

  • TF is god says:

    Wood is at the moment a very very lucky young man I for one do not rate him at all he’s slow got an awful touch the list goes on. But he’s scoring goals so were all happy BUT wait until he doesn’t then you will see the true player. Ps great goal against forest went to kick it with the one leg for it to come of his other. And if Magpie honestly thinks he is better than Jerome he is very deluded.

  • Cheltblue says:

    In reply to TF……

    I cannot believe the harsh words you have for Wood…The guy is 19 and was playing in the World Cup at 17/18 albeit for NZ but i remember watching him that day against Italy and he was a handful. How anyone can knock this guy for scoring 8 goals in 11 games is beyond me!!!!

    He is a young kid, and granted may not be the prettiest to watch but i for one dont care if he is scoring goals on a regular basis. Some people need a reality check.

    And FYI, i cant remember Jerome scoring 8 goals in the last 2/3 years let alone 11 games, whatever the level, and he had a fair share of goalscoring chances.

    Slating Wood is just damn right harsh!

    • Spud says:

      To be fair to Jerome, mate, he scored 11 in the prem 2 seasons ago (more than Anelka). Which put him as one of the highest scoring English players.
      I watched Wood against Cov & thought he was awful, the same against Nacional… However, I’m not naive enough to know that it was probably down to a lack of game time. He’s getting better with every game, as is to be expected with a young player. The lad seems to happy playing for us, which is refreshing to see. I hope his rich vein of form continues for us!

  • Mr Blue Sky says:

    Some of our fans just love to moan. Lets face it, they would still moan at Messi!

  • TF is god says:

    In Reply to Chelt Blue

    Grow up and smell the coffee Wood Is not a good player I don’t care if he’s 19 or 29. I know he’s scoring but wait until he stops then you will see the true player.By the way check your records the season before Jerome netted 12 times in the premiership!

  • Qatarblue says:

    To me he is a great option and I believe CH knows exactly when and how to use him. An example being that he was about to come on with Zigic in Maribor, but when we equalised it was Wood held back not Zigic.
    I feel a bit sorry for Rooney really in this, as he did all the early work whilst King and Zigic were getting fit, and made plenty of chances for others without netting too often himself. Cant even get on the 5 man bench now. I am sure he will be one of our main men as the season progress’s.
    But you just can’t keep Rooney on the bench ahead of Jimmy Greaves
    Think that we now have real choice with 4 completely differnt types of player – all of whom do know where the net is.
    Goals win match’s. KRO

  • Oldbluenose says:

    As has been already said,!!. Chris Wood, is a raw 19 yr old rookie, perhaps not pretty to watch, but knows where the opposition net is, AND puts the dammed ball into it for us,!!. Nuff-sed,!!.

  • Wingman Blue says:

    Spot on CheltBlue! I too watched him against Italy and thought then “what could he do for us?” He may lack Jerome’s finesse, but he won’t wobble when it’s time to pull the trigger, he keeps his nerve. I don’t suppose the Baggies’d swop him for Fahey?

  • Gareth says:

    That Lionel Messi, you watch, you only think he’s good because he’s scoring! Wait till he stops scoring, then you’ll see! :D

  • Ben says:

    Wood, good player for us in the championship; mainly only been good at home.
    But it terms of skill – he isn’t that good and tbh I think Gary O’Connor would score that many in our current line up.
    Lets face it, he didn’t play well and against Nacional – I was one of those moaning at every touch he took as he mainly gave the ball away 1st 60minutes, then he started to play better but still no better than average; He scores and everyone thinks he is amazing.
    Personally I think he is a handful – not yet ready not play every week and is a great sub to have.
    But he might be getting 30 goals for us this season if we can keep him going and keep creating these chances – I would however love to see us keep a few clean sheets and if that means trying Butland over the current crop so be it.

  • AR says:

    I do not like moaning about Blues’ players, but we can have opinions which may differ from others. I could forgive any player in a Blue shirt who ran his socks off for the team (Cameron J for example), but Wood does not attempt to close down the opposition. His ball control makes Zigic look like Messi, but he has scored some decent goals for us. So I think in our position and in the Championship he is worth persevering with, for he can do the hardest thing which is to score. Ball control and working for the team need a lot of improvement.

  • gary says:

    Big tall plyers are never pretty to watch and will always struggle a little with pace and control. Bendtner was no beter than Woods when we had him on loan but because he came from Arsenal he was forgiven, to be honest I think he is still not much better than Woods. Defenders defend and strikers are expected to score goals. If the goals do dry up which I expect, as all trikers have lean spells we have some more imperfect strikers to come in and hopefully keep it going .My concern is the soft goals we give away but I am sure this is being worked on as I write.


  • mark says:

    I AM GLAD SOME SO-CALL BLUES FANS keep knocking wood’s but he knows where the net is ??? COME ON YOU BLUE BOYS. AND YOU LOT KEEP MOANING!!!!!! kro

  • mark says:

    To further my comment trying sticking to what happens this season than plucking records out on previous seasons AND PREVIOUS players……. !!!! Enjoyed the ride………………………………KRO

  • mark says:

    BY THE WAY TREVOR FRANCIS never play in europe with blues!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • TF is god says:

    BY THE WAY Mark I Never Said he Did! But Didnt He play for a team In red and score The Winner In a FINAL.

  • AR says:

    I believe Bendtner was a pretty good player when he came to us, though he appears to be conceited. Wenger continued to play him wide,even when he came on in the Final & Arsenal were searching for a goal. But to compare him with Wood seems to me to be comparing chalk & cheese.

  • jazzzy786 says:

    Woods goals versus Forest summed him up perfectly missed the ball completely for the first and it bounced off his standing leg and went in. The second he showed great nerve and calmly slotted it past the keeper. In the hattrick game versus Millwall he hit the corner flag with an easy chance and scored with a few more difficult chances. He is raw but a player with great potential. Jerome worked his socks off and under Hughton he may have scored loads more but does anyone seriously believe he would’ve scored that 2nd goal versus Forest. How many one on ones have we seen CJ miss for us. I’d be tempted to get Wood as a makeweight in Ben Foster to WBA. He’s got no chance of breaking into the WBA first team and with Jack Butland in the wings do we really need Ben Foster that much.

  • jazzzy786 says:

    I am of course talking about the more likely scenario of us not going up and Foster signing permenantly for WBA. I think WBA will sign Foster and take Wood back too.

  • mark says:

    sorry then TF GONE HE gone try supporting the currant crop who are playing in blue!!!!!!!!!! KRO SORRY ARE YOU FOREST Supporter??????

  • chris says:

    this comment page shows how many blues fans get their facts wrong which is why they slate players , club or finance matters based on misinformation or incorrect facts in their own brain.
    ffs he’s nineteen and redmond seventeen and both have had great periods in games and poor periods in games and will do for the next 2 or 3 years.
    blimey there’s experienced players of 30 at the club who make stupid errors.
    chris has done the right thing and rested to some degree both players in the last three weeks.

  • Bluehobba says:

    Scoring breeds confidence and at 19 and scoring he must have it in abundance. Whether he goes on to fulfil his ambitions at higher levels we will have to wait and see but while he,s with us I think he will keep scoring. KRO

  • mark says:

    How many goals has Jerome scored!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • TF is god says:

    As I said before Mark GROW UP

  • mark says:

    Please if you wish to debate, stay in the here and now! I love birmingham city , you have your opinion, and most blues fans don’t agree with you…………….. come on you wood’s………………kro

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