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Is it true?
at 13:43 21 Jan 2020

I seem to recall hearing somewhere, perhaps on a Holloway LFW interview, that Eze, Osayi-Samuel and Fred Onyedinma at Wycombe, all played at school together? Is that true? They're all from Woolwich.
Tactical subtleties
at 14:07 19 Jan 2020

Really interesting chess going on yesterday.

Anyone else notice that we’re doing this thing with the full backs where they come inside into midfield. I notice it more with left back but Todd Kane did it too some times. They don’t always do it though and I haven’t quite worked out what the cues are yet. I presume it’s to stop being broken against through the middle and I know Man City often do it.

I liked the way Leeds in particular often passed into space that a midfielder was running in to rather than to feet, especially first half. Normally straight pass and angled run. Very effective, especially against out midfield two.

I thought they were also quite clever when they set up to play out from the back, and more and more of their players came deep to show for the ball, drawing our markers with them, and then they went long down the middle. It nearly worked for that chance when bamford our fought masterson, Kelly got caught in no mans land (again), but he screwed up the lob.

Alioski at left back was interesting, and he kept trying these big right-footed passes in field. Didn’t work for them though. Yet it was very rare that bright got to go at him one on on as cooper or someone would always come across when defending.

We did great rotational fouling on Hernandez. He really took a bit of a kicking and I’m not sure anyone got pulled up on it. Similarly bamford was nastier than I realised - always leaving a bit after the ball had been played and the ref was looking the other way.

Amazing how often we got the ball in good positions ready to break and they bullied us off it. Out layoffs and triangles didn’t work as well as normal.

Having said that the dribbling from BOS and ebs was fantastic and drew Leeds out of shape, but they never quite managed to release it into the resulting space sadly

Leeds, as others have, often targeted the back post. While kane didn’t win the headers he did by and large a good job of stopping his man getting a clean header on target.
Deshane Dalling to Swindon?
at 22:40 13 Jan 2020

Luke Freeman
at 23:10 5 Jan 2020

In other news, nice to see him get 2 assists today
Rotation and squad management
at 21:31 10 Dec 2019

I like how Warburton's doing it.

I had noticed how Bright was out of the picture for a bit. Now it's Ilias's turn. I wonder if Ebs and Ryan will ever get a rest? Lots of games, young minds. Better to give them a week or two off rather than 10 minutes break second half. Keeps them hungry, keeps them fresh. And we saw how Ebs went off the boil last season.

Thoughts after yestersay
at 09:19 23 Nov 2019

Went with a fair weather Fulham mate yesterday and in describing our team realised our starting 11 has:
3 players from our youth team
Two defenders signed on frees, who’ve been injured for most of the last two years
Two defenders signed on frees
A midfielder signed on a free from Rotherham
A midfielder on loan from spurs who’s been injured for most of the last 18 months.
Two strikers on loan from prem.
Not a transfer fee among them (maybe a little for Manning?)

The fact that we’re competitive, against teams assembled for 10s of millions, is something to be pleased with. And considering this provenance it’s less Surprising that our confidence dropped So visibly after conceding the second, and that Fulham were vastly superior at game management and strangling the life out of it once going ahead. Lots of room for improvement of course, but we have to remember where we’ve come from.

Why we’re struggling against the better teams
at 21:51 2 Nov 2019

Not just because they’re better! I think we’re playing too fast. I know that’s not normally a complaint. But I don’t think it’s helping us against the better teams. We’re pinging balls into midfield to marked players who try to lay it off and receive the return. If they’re closed down the option, as often as not, moves forward to make space to receive. It looks sublime against a Luton. But I think others (Brentford, WBA, Reading, Leeds) have worked out how to play against it. And if it doesn’t come off we’re left wide open on the transition. What beats us is not a high press as such, which we’re pretty good at passing around, it’s marking 1 for 1 on our midfield and staying tight. Getting all the quick passes right is very difficult, and as soon as one goes wrong they can spring. We can knock it around well. Against the better or more physical teams, I think we’re better off playing it slower, safer and keeping possession and not trying to move through the thirds quite so fast. Keep it. Work it to manning and play percentage balls into the box.
Prediction Logged by at 12:39:03
Stoke City v Queens Park Rangers prediction logged
Available players
at 22:33 10 May 2019

We have to sign half a team and need some experience. Doing my best Football manager impression while stuck at home with the kids and watching crap tv and listening to the xtc album posted in the skylarking thread I thought I'd save Les some work and look at those out of contract in the championship.

There are a few centrebacks about, but not too much attractive upfront or elsewhere.

Mike van de Hoorn - decent pedigree. Played plenty of games at the back for Swansea. Any good?
Tommy Elphick - should have a couple years left.
Frazier Campbell - looked good at our place, seems to have managed a full season after all his injury problems and score 1 in 3.
Andre Green - supposed to be a decent prospect at left wing for Villa.f
Moses Obuyajo - discussed to death elsewhere
Lewis Macleod - no idea. any good? decent age.
Wes Hoolahan - lovely player, surely far too old now, and not a position we need filling. Likewise...
Chris Brunt
George Boyd
Frank Fielding - reasonable keeper let go by Bristol City. Replacement if Joanna gets snapped up? In fact there are loads of experienced keepers about.
Michael Morrison - big centreback, must have a couple years left in him, just completed a full season.
Todd Cantwell - played a fair amount for Norwich this season. 21yo left-sided midfielder. Norwich have an option I believe, but perhaps they have grown beyond him now? Probably beyond us.
Efe Ambrose - 30yo centreback from Derby. International experience with Nigeria.
Ryan Tunnicliffe - left-sided midfielder iirc. From 'wall. Any good? Plays leftback too?
Mark Beevers - 400 games under his belt, mostly at championship level, 29. Centreback.
Ashley Cole - Ok that's a joke.
Gavin Massey - Wigan winger, sure we've been linked before?
Josh Vela - midfielder / right back from Bolton, 25, played over 100 championship games, versatile.

Have a look yourself:

Any insight into any of these? Any other ideas?
Fug me Kompany! (n/t)
at 21:30 6 May 2019

[Post edited 6 May 2019 21:31]
Jamie Pollock's Wonder OG
at 14:50 6 Apr 2018

Getting some love on the Guardian, including an interview with the man himself.

And the goal...
at 11:09 14 Mar 2018

I just wanted to give Ned a shout out. I hate him at rightback (thank god Holloway doesn't play him there) and I'm terrified whenever he has the ball at his feet, but.......

We're a much more successful team with him in the side.

With him, we've won 11 out of 26
Without him, we've won only 2 out of 14.

And if we have both Ned and Jack Robinson in the side we've won 44% of our games.
Without them we've won 23% and lost 50%

Hopefully we can do good deals to get them both signed up for next season.

(the filter function on this is diverting:
That stunk
at 21:00 3 Feb 2018

No, literally.

Spent the first half trying to work out where the smell was coming from, and it wasn't the pitch.

In case you can't work it out, that is a dog turd next to my seat at the back of r block.


I have never hated an ad more than the current Natwest ones
at 16:55 29 Jan 2018

we've been thinking, and then we thought, and we thought yes, and so we did.
Man city
at 12:00 30 Nov 2017

Watched match of the day last night and couldn't believe the number of empty seats at Man City. If a team playing like that can't sell out something really is broken in football.
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