The Battle for 7th

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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby sutts07 on Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:37 am

EastEndIRON wrote:It’s worth noting that they still have to play Chelsea, Arsenal, Man United and Liverpool


And we have Man City, Man Utd, Chelsea and Spurs... all away.

Not saying it can't be done. Just that I find it hard to see exactly where the 6 / 7 point swing is going to come from personally.

That said, a decent home win over Fulham on the Friday night will make it all look a lot tighter.
Wolves have a tricky game away at Bournemouth the following day. Watford are at Cardiff which won't be easy and Everton don't play. Could realistically have four teams all within 3 points of 7th by the end of that weekend.

Then obviously it is game on.
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby BondsoBob on Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:26 pm

szola wrote:We will have come a long way if we finish with a positive goal difference


Trouble is we we won't. It is just not in our DNA to finish with a positive goal difference. Off the top of my head I would wager we have not finished with a positive goal difference, in the top flight, on more than 10 occasions. :cry:
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby steveyrockstar on Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:43 pm

We've only finished with a positive GD once in the Prem - in Bilic's wonder season (in which we ironically finished - 7th!)
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby steveyrockstar on Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:02 pm

Can someone who watches more football than me explain why Wolves are doing so well and what their strengths are? Some have already touched on their lack of injuries, so that could be a massive factor I guess.

Other than Jota and Moutinho, I really know very little about their players, most of whom all seem to have come from the Portuguese league. They seem to have a small squad and only one striker who's never really been prolific at any previous club. On paper, and based on our first match against them (I missed the 3-0 defeat), they strike me as a decidedly average team on a wind, playing with confidence.

I would expect them to still drop plenty of points this season. However, it will be a massive task for us to catch them and finish 7th, especially as I can't see our players being anywhere near motivated enough to achieve it.
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby BondsoBob on Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:22 pm

steveyrockstar wrote:We've only finished with a positive GD once in the Prem - in Bilic's wonder season (in which we ironically finished - 7th!)


I was actually referring to the 100 odd years of league football prior to the Premier league as well. No doubt someone will check the record books but I'm pretty sure of what I said.
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby e17 on Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:17 pm

BondsoBob wrote:I was actually referring to the 100 odd years of league football prior to the Premier league as well. No doubt someone will check the record books but I'm pretty sure of what I said.

1958–59
1962–63
1964–65
1967–68
1968–69
1972–73
1981–82
1982–83
1983–84
1985–86
2015–16

11 times in the top flight :wink: Close!
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby steveyrockstar on Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:00 am

Shocking! It doesn't matter who the players are, who the manager is, what the decade is, we'll always be West Ham! :crest:

To think that we've had some really quality defenders over the years too.
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby Condorhammer on Wed Feb 13, 2019 8:54 am

I don’t think we’ll finish any higher than we are at present, and in all honesty will more than likely drop a few places. 13th - 14th would be my guess.
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby arlhe on Wed Feb 13, 2019 9:01 am

steveyrockstar wrote:Can someone who watches more football than me explain why Wolves are doing so well and what their strengths are? Some have already touched on their lack of injuries, so that could be a massive factor I guess.


Sky showed 'average injuries per team' for the PL last week. Wolves had by far the fewest ( less than 1 player out on average). We were well clear of everyone else with over 7. The other teams at the top of the chart were those in Europe, with squads to cope (but still well behind us).
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby Tenbury on Wed Feb 13, 2019 9:06 am

steveyrockstar wrote:Can someone who watches more football than me explain why Wolves are doing so well and what their strengths are? Some have already touched on their lack of injuries, .....


They've a lot of support round here the general consensus would seem to be:

1) Decent manager who's tactically sharp.
2) A sh*tload of investment , by and large ,well spent.

I would add, no one's worked out the best way to play them yet...that will change, how many times have teams come up and had a good first season, before finding their natural level?
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby Lord Zoltan on Wed Feb 13, 2019 9:07 am

Beat Fulham next Friday will bring us right back into the mix :thup:
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby Chicken Run Supreme on Wed Feb 13, 2019 9:09 am

steveyrockstar wrote:Can someone who watches more football than me explain why Wolves are doing so well and what their strengths are? Some have already touched on their lack of injuries, so that could be a massive factor I guess.


I'm sure I saw a stat somewhere saying so far they've only used 18 players this season, which is remarkable. That is definitely a factor in their position in the league, as it was for us in 85/86 - a settled team and no significant injuries will always help. However, they are playing football with the carefree abandon that first season back in Premier League teams are able to sometimes. They have nothing to lose and are punching above their weight. They will find it tougher next season but good luck to them.
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby James P on Wed Feb 13, 2019 9:54 am

I think Wolves are the best passers of the ball outside the top six. Admittedly this is just my opinion with the naked eye and there’s probably stats which suggest I’m wrong but whenever I watch them they seem to be able to move the ball around swiftly and accurately and always seem to get into dangerous spots with the opposition on the back foot.
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby sutts07 on Wed Feb 13, 2019 11:38 am

I don't buy into the hype around Wolves. They do play some lovely stuff and are a more than decent side on their day, but for me, they are massively over performing and I haven't been that impressed.

I actually think we should have beaten them at home, Arnautovic had a great chance late in the game at 0-0, clean through but smashed it straight at their keeper. That was followed by a gift from Sanchez to win the game. Those few mins alone are a six point swing between the two clubs, just shows the fine lines that can make or break a season.

Wolves have also had the luxury of only starting 17 different players in the Premier League this season. They have only used 18 in total.

We have had to use 24 different players and that is without even seeing Lanzini or Reid all season.

Patricio and Coady have started all 26
Doherty, Jimenez and Bennett have only missed one each
Moutinho and Boly have missed just two
Neves has missed three
Jonny has missed four

Just to hammer home the point, that is nine players form their preferred starting eleven who have been available for 22 games or more (86% of their games) this season. Seven of those players have started in 92% or more.

Either they are doing something right in terms of injury management or they have had an incredibly lucky season in regard to injuries.

Be interesting to see them next season if they do make 7th and sneak into Europe. You can be sure they wouldn't get away with using so few players again.

(edit... I should add that I think they will get 7th, by virtue of all others not being that impressive either)
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby Colours never run on Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:17 pm

I think they do play quality football. Often on the front foot and try to keep it on the deck flowing nicely. Got no qualms with them and can't deny they play attractive football. They do have quality players in abundance, they do have a quality manager, the missing ingredient to have the season they are having as a newly promoted side is mostly avoiding injuries. And good luck to them, I feel as if they've earned it in a way of trying to play the game the right way. They're definitely playing as consistently good as we have done this season in the League, only difference being is they haven't suffered the shocking injury pile up we have had to endure, which is a big compliment to Pellegrini and the players available to execute the play.
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby artlin on Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:25 pm

Re Wolves

A club with lots of investment.

Squad is stable, good manager (apart from THAT beard).

Young players, injury free.

Plus .... they loan lots of players, some kind of deal with an agency!!

I think that they are a good role model. Unlike the TOP FOUR who just throw money at a problem.

I like them.

The premier league would be much better with Wolves, Villa, Leeds and without Brighton, Bournemouth and Huddersfield.
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby Patito on Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:28 pm

artlin wrote:The premier league would be much better with Wolves, Villa, Leeds and without Brighton, Bournemouth and Huddersfield.


The Premier League is always better off when Chelsea are getting smashed 4-0 though :D
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby Aceface on Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:40 pm

steveyrockstar wrote:We've only finished with a positive GD once in the Prem - in Bilic's wonder season (in which we ironically finished - 7th!)


It makes you realise how **** we are – we'll all talk about that season for decades...but even Southampton finished higher than us that year (and Leicester won it). And Burnley (Burnley ffs) matched it last year.

It's a rubbish state of affairs for that to be our 21st century high point.
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby Aceface on Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:48 pm

steveyrockstar wrote:Can someone who watches more football than me explain why Wolves are doing so well?


Coady and Doherty are pretty decent defenders, and as you say their central midfield is better than a few top 6 clubs. They lucked into securing a CL level keeper as well given the technicality about Patricio's Bosman status. That alone would have taken an enormous chunk out of their transfer budget in different circumstances.

But I think the biggest thing separating them from where they are and, say, just having an average midtable season like Brighton is simply that Jimenez has proven unexpectedly fruitful up front. That was where they were looking weakest on paper when the season started, and there was no particular reason to think he'd be as prolific as he has been (8 goals in his last 11 starts I think I heard last week). Most of their other attackers have struggled in the transition from Championship to PL in terms of scoring, so if he'd fizzled or been injured they'd have been floating in with the rest of the flotsam and jetsam.

It's become clear as day in recent seasons how far having a fit squad will take you.
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Re: The Battle for 7th

Postby Colours never run on Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:49 pm

artlin wrote:
The premier league would be much better with Wolves, Villa, Leeds and without Brighton, Bournemouth and Huddersfield.


Agree with the rest but think there's an element of football snobbery about this bit. I say good luck to the 'little' teams for breaking the mould of the more 'usual suspects' who have monopolised being in the top division for so long in the past. It's great to see the likes of Bournemouth bloodying the noses of a bottomless pit Chelsea.
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