███████ Match Ratings vs Chelsea ███████

MOTM


  • Total voters
    226

sloth

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 7, 2005
Messages
8,995
This was a really interesting game, classic premiership but also quite a tactical affair too - both Redknapp and AVB changed things around and both were nearly vindicated, a draw was a fair result.

It was obvious AVB would go with his recent formula of sitting deeper, less possession and playing more reactively on the counter attack, see here...

http://www.zonalmarking.net/2011/12/19/andre-villas-boas-chelsea-possession/

With this in mind the obligation was for us to take the initiative, play high up, move the ball around and dominate the game and that's exactly what we did early on and got a well deserved goal, but unlike most teams who come and play deep and on the counter at WHL who will continue to do that and try and nick a late goal etc, Chelsea immediately came out, played higher up and got more of a grip on the ball. I guess with all the mixed messages coming from us this week about who was fit/unfit AVB had them drilled to play high and deep at the click of the fingers. As soon as they got the equaliser where Walker and BAE were horribly exposed, they dropped deeper again and we once more got a grip on the ball.

Redknapps half time switch will get criticised, but there was a real logic to it - it's just a shame that Pav didn't realise this either. Mikel went off just before half time for them and he is excellent at sitting between the lines suffocating the space, this is why VDV was playing from the right which I was happy with, there would have been no space for him to operate in had he played off Ade. Romeu is more of a deep lying passer who will step into the midfield and play more fluidly meaning there would be more space in the hole, and with VDV injured Pav was a decent choice to operate their and also pick up Romeu off the ball so we weren't outnumbered in the centre, which Pav did very poorly. It was a brave move, and didn't quite work out, but I won't criticise Harry for that move. With a 4-4-2 in place we were naturally going to play more directly, quicker balls forward to try and test a slow makeshift defence and also lure Chelsea out to play higher up and more proactively where they have well documented failings this season. Redknapp was John Terry's arse away from being vindicated, but they had some great chances too which was always going to happen as we deliberately opened the game up. I criticised that move against Arsenal, but here I think it was just about justified.

It was an entertaining game, and I can't be disappointed with our performance or Harry's tactics at all. We go into Christmas as London's top club, and I for one am delighted with the way this season is going so far. We're still not there yet, but we are improving, have a great team spirit and I think Redknapp is getting a lot more right than wrong than he was last season.

Friedel 6 Enough has been said about him staying on his line, but I was most disappointed with him nearly gifting Sturridge a goal by parrying the ball straight into a danger area in the first half.
Walker 5 AWOL for the goal, and whilst you can't fault his willingness to get forward and attack he didn't have much joy there.
BAE 4 Poorest game for a while, joined Walker in the AWOL department for their goal, and his passing was very poor. Sturridge gave him a torrid time.
King 6 Not his best, and finally lost his 100% win ratio this season.
Gallas 8 Big game player, didn't disappoint.
Bale 7.5 Devastating going forward, must work harder. The ball for Ade was sickeningly good.
VDV 7 Got involved, rarely loses the ball and had he not got injured would have had more joy in the second half where I'm sure Harry would have brought him central.
Modric 7 Decent enough, was obviously best early on when we dominated the ball.
Sandro 8.5 Absolute machine, him and Parker together are like 2 supercarged Pacmen munching anything in their path.
Parker 7.5 Looking a little tired now, but still more than decent.
Ade 7.5 Good performance, so involved in our play - when his first touch recovers a little these will be 9s.

Pav 5 Blown off the ball by a moderate gust of wind.

Merry Christmas SC.
That's a good analysis of what Harry was trying to achieve, it falls down however, when you consider the player he was trying to achieve it with. Conceding the middle of the park to a team as strong as Chelsea in exchange for the added goal-threat of Pav is frankly a little reckless.

I don't think it was a dreadful move by Harry, and over all I'm pretty pleased with a decent performance in tough circumstances, but I do think his instinct ruled his logic.
 

StartingPrice

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I don't think we got our tactics right from the outset. Our midfield was rather flat and for all the possession we had before Chelsea equalised, we didn't move the ball quickly enough/our off the ball movement wasn't good enough and we created very little. Chelsea missed a sitter within minutes of Adebayor's goal. As halftime approached, we were passing to each other around the halfway line-"Here-you have that because I don't know wtf to do with it."
 
Joined
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Redknapps half time switch will get criticised, but there was a real logic to it - it's just a shame that Pav didn't realise this either. Mikel went off just before half time for them and he is excellent at sitting between the lines suffocating the space, this is why VDV was playing from the right which I was happy with, there would have been no space for him to operate in had he played off Ade. Romeu is more of a deep lying passer who will step into the midfield and play more fluidly meaning there would be more space in the hole, and with VDV injured Pav was a decent choice to operate their and also pick up Romeu off the ball so we weren't outnumbered in the centre, which Pav did very poorly. It was a brave move, and didn't quite work out, but I won't criticise Harry for that move. With a 4-4-2 in place we were naturally going to play more directly, quicker balls forward to try and test a slow makeshift defence and also lure Chelsea out to play higher up and more proactively where they have well documented failings this season. Redknapp was John Terry's arse away from being vindicated, but they had some great chances too which was always going to happen as we deliberately opened the game up. I criticised that move against Arsenal, but here I think it was just about justified.

It was an entertaining game, and I can't be disappointed with our performance or Harry's tactics at all. We go into Christmas as London's top club, and I for one am delighted with the way this season is going so far. We're still not there yet, but we are improving, have a great team spirit and I think Redknapp is getting a lot more right than wrong than he was last season.

It's not often I say this, but I disagree with your assessment. I think Redknapp had every reason to believe that Romeu would be playing, not Mikel as Romeu had been starting recently. He also switched VDV right against Arsenal, in an equally tactically inept move. But against Cole/Mata this was even crazier.

I also cannot believe for a nano second that the manager of Pavlyuchenko, would put him on thinking he's going occupy Chelsea players more than what Kranjcar would have done. Not only was Redknapp playing Kranjcar in cm earlier in the season, but Kranjcar is actually an ideal player to play in the hole much more competently than Pav.

I don't believe the decision to default to 442 was a clever decision to exploit a perceived weakness, it was Redknapp reaching for the comfort blanket in the absence of coming up with something more imaginative.

I don't think it was brave, and I don't think AVB was brave either, I think both were conservative in their application (both brought in destroyers for example) and the game only really opened up with Redknapp's reversion to his trusty 442 and surrender of the midfield, a move which could have seen the game over for us long before Terry's arse made the stop of the day.
 

walworthyid

David Ginola
Joined
Oct 25, 2004
Messages
5,399
It's not often I say this, but I disagree with your assessment. I think Redknapp had every reason to believe that Romeu would be playing, not Mikel as Romeu had been starting recently. He also switched VDV right against Arsenal, in an equally tactically inept move. But against Cole/Mata this was even crazier.

I also cannot believe for a nano second that the manager of Pavlyuchenko, would put him on thinking he's going occupy Chelsea players more than what Kranjcar would have done. Not only was Redknapp playing Kranjcar in cm earlier in the season, but Kranjcar is actually an ideal player to play in the hole much more competently than Pav.

I don't believe the decision to default to 442 wasn't a clever decision to exploit a perceived weakness, it was Redknapp reaching for the comfort blanket in the absence of coming up with something more imaginative.

I don't think it was brave, and I don't think AVB was brave either, I think both were conservative in their application (both brought in destroyers for example) and the game only really opened up with Redknapp's reversion to his trusty 442 and surrender of the midfield, a move which could have seen the game over for us long before Terry's arse made the stop of the day.
I completely agree. Of all the things he could have done, the thing he actually did was the worst.

Pav has his uses, few as they are, but that was not one of them. We needed to keep 3 in the middle whilst replacing a player on the right. Bring on Pienaar and push Modric forward 10 yards?

The worst thing of all is that he knew what would happen........
 
Joined
Dec 8, 2011
Messages
63
I swear that the only reason he has suddenly started using Pav is to get on his sweet side, after leaving him out in the cold the ENTIRE SEASON. Before these last two weeks, he'd resort to anything before Pav.

I think Harry is a man manager first and foremost. That's not to say he doesn't consider tactics, but given his sudden change of mind in the media about Pav in recent days I have a strong suspicion he has been trying to soften the blow of Pav staying. But Pav is ofc still pissed and still not very good.

I'm getting really worried about whether we're going to get a new striker. I don't think there is any sign we are, because our usual targets (Rossi, Leandro, Llorente, Wickham etc) are out of our reach in Jan, and there aren't really any PL strikers to poach. Maybe a Zamora or Amauri or something.
 

Mr Pink

SC Supporter
Joined
Aug 25, 2010
Messages
44,860
It's not often I say this, but I disagree with your assessment. I think Redknapp had every reason to believe that Romeu would be playing, not Mikel as Romeu had been starting recently. He also switched VDV right against Arsenal, in an equally tactically inept move. But against Cole/Mata this was even crazier.

I also cannot believe for a nano second that the manager of Pavlyuchenko, would put him on thinking he's going occupy Chelsea players more than what Kranjcar would have done. Not only was Redknapp playing Kranjcar in cm earlier in the season, but Kranjcar is actually an ideal player to play in the hole much more competently than Pav.

I don't believe the decision to default to 442 was a clever decision to exploit a perceived weakness, it was Redknapp reaching for the comfort blanket in the absence of coming up with something more imaginative.

I don't think it was brave, and I don't think AVB was brave either, I think both were conservative in their application (both brought in destroyers for example) and the game only really opened up with Redknapp's reversion to his trusty 442 and surrender of the midfield, a move which could have seen the game over for us long before Terry's arse made the stop of the day.

Yep, exactly. We can tap dance around this all day long but at the end of the day you're asking for trouble by handing the impetus to Chelsea in midfield by going 4-4-2. Of course this was compounded by the fact that everything Pav touched turned to shit.

I would be dying to know how that would of turned out had Kranjcar been asked to play in between the lines, coming deep and matching them up in the middle of the park.

We still might not of won but I tell you what Chelsea wouldn't of created that many chances.

Had Ramires taken one of his gilt edged chances, particularly the header, I reckon the change for Pav would of been picked up on more in the media.

Anyway, lets not complain too much ffs we are third at xmas :grin:
 

StartingPrice

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I completely agree. Of all the things he could have done, the thing he actually did was the worst.

Pav has his uses, few as they are, but that was not one of them. We needed to keep 3 in the middle whilst replacing a player on the right. Bring on Pienaar and push Modric forward 10 yards?

The worst thing of all is that he knew what would happen........
:eh:...Pienaar was on the bench...maybe he should have done that then...:whistle:
 
Joined
Oct 19, 2004
Messages
39,837
I can live with Ekotto's occasional lapses of laissez faire, because he's actually, technique wise, a decent footballer, but Walker's just a poor footballer with quick legs.

Upgrading Ekotto would be harder than upgrading Walker.
 

Tom Read

Active Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2008
Messages
862
Give him a break, he is 21 after all. I mean, how good was Neville at 21 or someone like Dixon? I know they weren't amazing, but they played in a top team for a good 15 years.

Give the lad a chance.
 
Joined
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Give him a break, he is 21 after all. I mean, how good was Neville at 21 or someone like Dixon? I know they weren't amazing, but they played in a top team for a good 15 years.

Give the lad a chance.
So you want me to wait 15 years for him to become Gary Neville ?
 
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