Champions League 2017/18 (non-Spurs)

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As I said, it may just be that Dembele and Wanyama are unavailable, but we've had a cm3 (or 1+2) with the likes of Eriksen and Sissoko in it. I'd like to think it's Poch trying to be more progressive from midfield, but until Wanyama and Dembele are available we won't know if it's that, partially that or just he's playing the only options he thinks he has left.
I feel it's the latter.
 

nightgoat

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English teams looking strong in the CL this season. On balance, probably good for Spurs. Keeps our league rivals busy, helps coefficient.
Liverpool and Man Utd got basically the easiest groups they could possibly have had. Man City's ain't exactly daunting, either.
 
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What triumvirate of predominantly defensive players are?
Sissoko's not a defensive footballer, just not a very good one. Dembele shouldn't be predominantly defensive, he started life as a forward, he's just not very good at moving the ball quickly.

There are plenty of players who are defensively capable but offensively proficient too.
 

nightgoat

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Sissoko's not a defensive footballer, just not a very good one. Dembele shouldn't be predominantly defensive, he started life as a forward, he's just not very good at moving the ball quickly.

There are plenty of players who are defensively capable but offensively proficient too.
Not every player has to be making no-look passes, flicks etc. Kante doesn't do that for Chelsea but has a place in their team. Similarly Fernandinho, Matic etc. Dembele may have started his career as a forward but that's not his role now, like many players who shift positions as their careers go on. I know you'd sooner chew your own feet off than praise Dier but he is actually a very fine passer over a wide range of distance. Probably why Mourinho wanted to pay £40m+ for him.
 
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Not every player has to be making no-look passes, flicks etc. Kante doesn't do that for Chelsea but has a place in their team. Similarly Fernandinho, Matic etc. Dembele may have started his career as a forward but that's not his role now, like many players who shift positions as their careers go on. I know you'd sooner chew your own feet off than praise Dier but he is actually a very fine passer over a wide range of distance. Probably why Mourinho wanted to pay £40m+ for him.
I was going to start naming the various players, some you have named already. They idon'thave to be Xhavi Alonso to be robust competent defensively and proficient offensively and players like Kante, Matic, Fernandinho, Bakayoko etc are all better at transitioning, moving the ball with a bit of alacrity, under pressure - and that's what is essential in midfield - than Dier.

I do not think Dier is a fine passer at all. If he has lots of time and space he can hit a nice mid/long range pass. That is not the essential requirement, IMO, for a good cm, what is more important is to be able to think and play quickly and efficiently, quick tempo football, which Dier struggles with, which is one of the reasons we are so ponderous.

Dier does not want to receive the ball under pressure, and under pressure his passing becomes hot potato hurried, erratic and it's just hit the nearest white shirt. Sissoko is the same in midfield areas. No technique.

Dembele has technique in abundance, but will not release the ball until he's turned two 360's, carried out due diligence to check the authenticity of the recipient, and then double checked again.

It's the ability to play out from pressure that breaks lines and opens up the game, gets forwards in possession in better circumstances than with a double block set in front of them because we've taken so long to transition 20 yards.

I'm not saying it's an easy thing to coach and achieve tactically, but we sure as shit need to try.


Edit

And for the record, though I am vehemently opposed to Dier in a CM2 of any hue, I have stated that as the central insurance in a CM3, I have a bit less issue, but that's as long as we get the right pair either side to mitigate his deficiencies.
 
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scat1620

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Dembele has technique in abundance, but will not release the ball until he's turned two 360's, carried out due diligence to check the authenticity of the recipient, and the double checked again.
I agree with your assessment of Dier in midfield; couldn't agree more with everything you have to say about Sissoko; and don't agree with your views on Dembele in midfield, but out of that mixed bunch of Agrees and Disagrees I've ended up going with Funny because that was a genuinely chucklesome bit of prose. Well played.
 

ItsBoris

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Mourinho won EL last year and their squad has just gotten better since, Unfortunately I think they will get quite far.

----------------------------

I'm hoping that Bayern don't get past the group stage, gets into the EL, gets drawn against le Arse, wins 10-2. That would be glorious.
They didn't really beat anyone noteworthy to win the Europa league. I would say their position in the league last season is a more accurate assessment of the quality of their squad. They've definitely improved over last season but not enough to make up the gap to Chelsea or City, who are still a level or two above. City bring players off the bench who would easily walk into the United 11 (Bernardo Silva, Sane, Gundogan) and their starting players are on an even higher level. I think United's team on paper is comparable with our's, but not on paper we have a more coherent playing style and work better as a team.
 

Hakkz

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They didn't really beat anyone noteworthy to win the Europa league. I would say their position in the league last season is a more accurate assessment of the quality of their squad. They've definitely improved over last season but not enough to make up the gap to Chelsea or City, who are still a level or two above. City bring players off the bench who would easily walk into the United 11 (Bernardo Silva, Sane, Gundogan) and their starting players are on an even higher level. I think United's team on paper is comparable with our's, but not on paper we have a more coherent playing style and work better as a team.
What I mean is that Mourinho knows hos to win cups.
 
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I agree with your assessment of Dier in midfield; couldn't agree more with everything you have to say about Sissoko; and don't agree with your views on Dembele in midfield, but out of that mixed bunch of Agrees and Disagrees I've ended up going with Funny because that was a genuinely chucklesome bit of prose. Well played.
Even though You're wrong about me being wrong about Dembele, I hearted you anyway.
 

nightgoat

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I was going to start naming the various players, some you have named already. They idon'thave to be Xhavi Alonso to be robust competent defensively and proficient offensively and players like Kante, Matic, Fernandinho, Bakayoko etc are all better at transitioning, moving the ball with a bit of alacrity, under pressure - and that's what is essential in midfield - than Dier.

I do not think Dier is a fine passer at all. If he has lots of time and space he can hit a nice mid/long range pass. That is not the essential requirement, IMO, for a good cm, what is more important is to be able to think and play quickly and efficiently, quick tempo football, which Dier struggles with, which is one of the reasons we are so ponderous.

Dier does not want to receive the ball under pressure, and under pressure his passing becomes hot potato hurried, erratic and it's just hit the nearest white shirt. Sissoko is the same in midfield areas. No technique.

Dembele has technique in abundance, but will not release the ball until he's turned two 360's, carried out due diligence to check the authenticity of the recipient, and then double checked again.

It's the ability to play out from pressure that breaks lines and opens up the game, gets forwards in possession in better circumstances than with a double block set in front of them because we've taken so long to transition 20 yards.

I'm not saying it's an easy thing to coach and achieve tactically, but we sure as shit need to try.


Edit

And for the record, though I am vehemently opposed to Dier in a CM2 of any hue, I have stated that as the central insurance in a CM3, I have a bit less issue, but that's as long as we get the right pair either side to mitigate his deficiencies.
Matic is a carthorse when it comes to zipping the ball about. Why do you think he was Utd's second choice after Dier?

Reading this post it's clear what I said before - your opinions are clouded by your bias. Having been schooled in Portugal his technique is actually way better than most English players and 'hurried, erratic, hit the nearest white shirt' sounds like how Wanyama often is under pressure.
 
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Matic is a carthorse when it comes to zipping the ball about. Why do you think he was Utd's second choice after Dier?

Reading this post it's clear what I said before - your opinions are clouded by your bias. Having been schooled in Portugal his technique is actually way better than most English players and 'hurried, erratic, hit the nearest white shirt' sounds like how Wanyama often is under pressure.


No, my bias is clouded by my opinion, there's a very subtle difference, but it's important.

Why would I have a bias against Dier, or any player. I just have an opinion that is based on what I continually see. That opinion hasn't changed because, fundamentally, Dier doesn't changed and keeps doing the things that I am basing my opinion on. That's not bias, or agenda, it's just an opinion of a player that doesn't alter a whole lot because what it's based on doesn't alter a whole lot.

The problem is, you don't agree or like that opinion, and that's absolutely fine, but it would be much better if you just discussed it with me, explained why you disagree, gave me some examples or supporting evidence etc. than just get angry with me for not sharing your view.

For what it's worth I haven't given Dier much criticism lately, I've said I think this new role at the centre of a three type CM is more viable, where he can be more positionally disciplined and allow two 8's to do more of the footballing. I have also continually championed Dier as a potentially very good CB going forwards when others have slated him. How does this fit with your bias theory?

I just don't like him at all in a CM2 because I believe any CM2 system requires both to be varying degrees of all things, particularly nimble with and without the ball, and we as a team need at least one CM in there who can move the ball quickly, and while I acknowledge Wanyama has some limitations to his game, he at least comes closer to filling the "package" requirements in a CM2, because he can press much better than Dier because Dier gets turned to easily, he can move with the ball when being pressed by an opponent (again Dier can't) and his passing is limited but he'll generally move it more expediently than Dier which aids transition.

My guess is that Mourinho may have preferred Matic but didn't think he'd have a chance of getting him from Chelsea, or maybe he did prefer Dier, maybe because he's 23 and Matic is 29 and he knows Dier could play CB too, a position ManU have been struggling with as well. And here's another option; Mourinho doesn't get everything right? This is the guy that sold Mata, Lukaku, DeBruyne (I think) and signed Muntari after all.



And @Insomnia , you might as well have a read of this too, and if you want to discuss it, here is better than spamming up the youth thread.
 

TheChosenOne

The only way is up
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Irish terrestrial TV is so fucking predictable...

On Tuesday night the "free to air" game on TV3 is unsurprisingly Maribor v CL draw specialists Liverpool - not wanting to show Real vs Tottenham nor City vs Napoli, which are going to be on the highlights show later..

Then on the Wednesday it is the turn of RTE2 to show Benfica vs FMU


I despair, i cannot justify getting the BT/Eir package as my household budget is severely pinched at the mo.


Grrr.
 
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