Date:Wednesday February 4 2009
Vital Wycombe outlines the input of QPR loanee Angelo Balanta upon his return to W12.
The editor of Vital Wycombe speaks to Vital QPR about Balanta's eventful spell at Adams Park.
Angelo Balanta's first appearance for Wycombe came against promotion rivals Bradford City when the youngster came on from the bench at the start of the second half.
It didn't take long for Wycombe fans to see that Balanta's close control was excellent. It was immediately apparent that he did nothing in a rush.
He seemed to make time for himself on the ball and you could tell that Bradford didn't quite know what to make of him.
One incident that sticks in my mind happened close to where I was sitting.
Angelo took a pass near the left touchline and was immediately pounced on by three hefty Bradford players. Following the melee which ensued, there was laughter from the crowd as Balanta was the one who emerged from the pile of bodies, cool as you like with the ball seemingly glued to his foot.
He made a good first impression on everyone. Initially he was played on the wide-left of midfield in our 4-5-1 formation (or 4-3-3 as our manager Peter Taylor likes to call it !) It was from this position that he drifted in and scored two 20 yard screamers during the early part of his stay.
His third and final goal for Wycombe was my personal favourite as I think it sums him up quite well.
By this time he was playing up-front just off our target man in a 4-4-2 formation. A shot from another player was fumbled by the diving Bury keeper and the ball broke to Balanta.
Most League Two forwards would have just whacked it as the keeper tried to recover, but Angelo flicked it over him, stepped over him and then prodded it into the net.
It was audacious.
Sadly, Balanta's star began to wane the longer he stayed.
His earlier desire to impress seemed to be replaced by a reluctance to get involved. To be frank, he looked like he didn't want to be here.
It was particularly galling as it came during our recent poor spell when we really could have done with something special from him.
He wasn't working hard for the team and this was reflected in him being dropped for one recent game and substituted early in the second half in several others.
It would have been good for Wycombe and also perhaps for Angelo Balanta if he had stayed for the rest of the season and buckled down to the task at hand. I would certainly have enjoyed watching him play for a little longer.
However, he's now gone back to QPR and good luck to him. He's got all the skill to take him a long way in the game and he's only young so it's hard to make a judgement on whether he's got the right mentality.
Good luck to QPR for the rest of the season.
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