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I don't think we're underachiving either. We sold our best player and replaced him with someone not half as good. What do you expect?
To say this squad is really good is a total myth. We have no established right back. Two average keepers, an error prone left back. A strange midfield that doesn't quite gel together and an injury prone front line.
It's like groundhog day with carroll >>gets injured>>plays average for first few games after recovering>>>Hits top form and looks unplayable for 3-4 games>>>Gets injured again>>>>and repeat.
Anyone who thinks that if we simply change managers again and all our problems will be solved is a fool.
If I have any criticism of Slav it is his failure to address the right back situation and the signings of
have all looked poor. I think Snodgrass will be alright.
He's came from Greece but he's certainly no Moussaka.
Arthur - looked good on saturday and most games apart from west brom away
Feghouli - avaerage player too lightweight. sell in summer 10m ?
Nortveidt - not played in his preferred position of DM. not a rb !
Tore - agree hes poor but going.
Snodgrass - average squad player. bench at best for him. not first team.
Carroll - we should sell in summer. cant build a team on him. disrupts us every few weeks with his injuries.
callerei - get rid. poor
sakho - keep give him another chance to see if finally over injuries as best striker we have and would fit our playing style.
fletcher - keep but a bit raw at present.
need a new RB, striker and attacking midfielder.
also need to sort out lack of fitness and lack of training. Need an overhaul of backroom staff. get rid of dicks!
The internet & football forums in a nutshell
Poster A: The manager is too matey with the players, whatever their ability. They're walking all over him
Poster B: The manger should pick this player whatever they might be like in training & the dressing room. Stop being stubborn & pick them.
There are numerous problems at the club and they have not been rectified since Sullivan and Gold rode into town and "rescued us".We have a wage bill commensurate with a team that ,should be comfortable top ten and able to have a real go at a cup on a regular basis.
How much of that "wage bill" is being eaten up by "panic buying" due to a shockingly "unbalanced" squad of players? Three CBs because we replaced our fourth with an overseas,supposedly versatile, defender on a free - Result being we forced one of the "starting CBs" to play a significant portion of the season carrying an injury and ended paying the money saved on that sale giving a 32 year old CB his "dream pension" !To make matters worse ,we have been fighting the "big boys" off over a young CB ,who is significantly better than said "freebie",imo and not letting him near the team.
Another reason for "panic buying" or just ignoring the fact, is the absolute mess of striker recruitment that Sullivan has overseen in his time (miss) running the club - We have,probably spent upwards of a £100m on that "mythical marquee signing" player and what have we got to show for it? - If Carlton Cole could still run, he would be getting plenty of game time,imo.We have tried wingers, then we tried "goalscoring" wide forwards, now we seem to have settled on something in between - Snodgrass,Tore,Feghouli,Valencia,Ayew,Antonio
Everyone has bad luck, but ,this season, it appears that bad luck with injuries -if you call our only LB getting injured at the start of the season and having to find someone in a hurry, can be deemed bad luck!The farce that is titled the RB saga, encapsulates all that is wrong with the club,imo - We only had one, but the manager does not rate him, so he preceded to "shoehorn" whoever was available into that position and the resulting mess saw us panic signing up an aging prima donna on "significant wages".
Bilic blamed a lack of intensity in training, back in November.The stadium move has also been blamed.Then the biggie - Payet!
Unfortunately Bilic has to take responsibility for the shambles because Sullivan will not,imo.
Poor signings and squad balance, may not be the managers fault, bedding into the new stadium is undoubtedly a difficult situation to manage, but I cannot accept the fact that time and time again this season we have looked poorly prepared tactically, significantly less fit than nearly all the other teams in the league, and poorly mentally prepared judging by the amount of goals we concede especially early in either half.
The buck with these issues stops firmly with SB and his chosen backroom team and worryingly if anything we've seem to be getting worse in the areas and not better.
As I mentioned in the match thread, I firmly believe that we are now the easiest side in the league to play against, and if I was one of the other 19 managers I would be rubbing my hands together at the prospect of facing us
I posted this in the SuUmmer transfer thread but i think it has relevance here
West Brom have some good players for sure (and have certainly improved their squad), but let's be honest, they are where they are in the table because of the manager
Pulis may not be everyone's cup of tea, but i can assure you that every single one of those players goes onto the pitch fully motivated, extremely fit, exceptionally well-drilled and knows exactly what job they are supposed to do as individuals and as a team in many situations
I think we are currently lacking in a number of these areas IMHO
For me, we exhibit many of the problems that Arsenal also have had in the past couple of years. Arsenal probably have better players and a better squad than Chelsea (or at least they are on a par). Yet Chelsea are 13 points clear at the top and Arsenal are struggling in 6th. Why is this? Simply because Arsenal are completely disorganised and no-one knows what on earth they are supposed to be doing
The fact we don't know whether to blame the manager or the chairmen for the standard of the transfer dealings in the last couple of windows speaks volumes about the mess the club is in. I have nothing but admiration for Bilic for having to deal with those muppets on transfers.
Bilic was a few dodgy and blatant ref decisions away from getting us into the champions league.
The Daves failed to build on that by spending big on the level of players needed to sustain the challenge.
Now we are in the **** and it's making Bilic look like he is inept.
All they had to do was back him with the money, give him the tools to do the job.
No manager could put up with these two muppets.
To be honest if I was Bilic I would walk at the end of the season.
Also im sure that at least twice Randolph kicked the ball straight to them from a backpass, and Obiang i think who missed the header at the front post for their 3rd goal. Lets say out of this 30% of individual errors we cut that in half, that could be 6-9 points saved. Also cant blame Bilic for Nordviet sliding in and conceding a peno at ***** hart lane in the last minute. Honestly if you go back there are loads of them.
Ultimately for me this is down to the squad. We have an average squad and i honestly cant believe anyone would say otherwise. Apart from Carroll, Lanzini, Reid and Antonio are any of the others that great? You get what you pay for!!
Exactly you can tell Sullivan used to work in media, the spin to make it look like its all slav's fault is unreal. But hey its working as some want sacked! Especially where i sit!
Obiang gave the ball away for the first goal, and Carroll missed the header for the 3rd
Well managed and well drilled teams make less errors, so the manager does have to take some responsibility for that
Sully probably coming out with this nonsense as the contract negotiations presumably need to start, so a good way to dumb down any expectations Bilic might have. Bit like when you've worked damn hard for 12 months, in trying circumstances & they throw back you were 5 minutes late 1 day last week, how can you expect anything, where's your commitment ?
Bilic has been damn good for our club, I can't think of anyone else who would manage the last 2 years better or who could work with the fools on the Board. Sully says we're 2 players short of being a "very, very good Team", actually we're 3 Directors short of having a proper Board of Directors who can deliver what they promise.
No he won't because,fundamentally,he isn't a "top keeper".He is an average keeper as is Randolph and the discussion between them is sort of pointless because,for me,they are much of a muchness.
I agree as such that well drilled team make less errors collectively but im not sure how well you can drill a team so that one bloke dosent head a simple ball or is daydreaming in the middle of the park. And we had a known defensive coach in Fat Sam and we still shipped goals due to player errors as well, so im not sure where the question lays other than the players?
BTW i do think Bilic should shoulder some of the responsibility but i feel you cant blame him for it all. Some of it is out of his hands and up to the men who cross the white line at 3pm Saturday. Deserves some real money to be spent come the summer and another season for me.
Of course the players need to take blame
My point is that we do not look particularly motivated, fit, well-drilled or organised
In fact we look like a bit of a rag bag most of the time with no real philosophy, semblance of structure or consistent way of playing
Players, coaches, tactics, all substandard...
There's a far better team in there than is manifesting, we have far from the worst squad in the league.
Motivation - being mid-table, with no place in Europe or silverware to play for, do you find it odd?
Fit - Are we unfit when we can attack the opposition for 45 minutes straight, in the 2nd half
Well-Drilled - What does this mean?
Organised - Have we ever been organised defensively, when we weren't relying on counter-attacking, re our goals against ratio since Bilic took over.
We had a woefully incomplete squad.
We have two good shot stoppers in goal who can't control their are and we either rooted to their line or out of position on walkabout too much of the time.
We have one good but raw attacking right back who to this point is a question mark defensively.
We have one aging and slow rock of a.Centre back, 2 solid centre backs who have and this year will not have a chance to form a partnership, a good but casual and injured all season, either playing injured or out left sided centre back.
We have 2 attacking left backs who have both been injured and poor defensively.
We have one solid all purpose central midfielder who is now out for the season, one solid but slow midfield general who is crucified by the fans at every opportunity. We have one tecnichally gifted, but positionally unaware defensively irresponsible midfield dynamo who is better at playing centre back. We have one immensely gifted attacking central midfielder who is sometimes overrun in central midfield.
We have one solid winger who has underperformed since coming in, a beast of a winger who just doesn't have a football brain but is now out for possibly the season. We have a right winger who is talented going forward, but defensively hopeless. We have a decent second striker who missed 2/3s of the season through injury and international duty and is still rusty inspite of scoring 3 in his last 4. We have a brilliant and skilled old fashioned number 9 who missed half the season due to injury and rarely gets decent service.
We also have a right, back, winger, utility defender/midfielder and a striker who have barely contributed if at all who are off the second the season is over, not to mention using a squad place on Sam Westley.
Effectively we played all season with a flawed oft injured 20 man squad, but the results are the manager's fault. Right now we have 14 senior players including 2 flawed keepers and 3 defensively liabilities of right backs.
If we do anything the rest of the season it will be a miracle... but of course the manager is to blame.
We haven't looked particularly 'up for it' all season, so the fact we have nothing to play for is not an excuse. Anyway, they are professional footballers with a quarter of the season to go so they should be motivated regardless. We are not safe from relegation yet, so should definitely still be motivated
Leicester set back and gave us the ball. We hardly had to run around a lot so not difficult to keep fitness levels up in that scenario. In most games our fitness levels and intensity are 2nd best IMHO (and this has been mentioned a few times in the press)
Well drilled means having some kind of plan in place so that each player knows what they are supposed to do at all times, based on how the game unfolds. I look at us play and we don't seem to have any kind of discernible style, nor do any individuals really know what they are supposed to be doing or how they should be interacting with other players. It is all a bit 'Heath Robinson', headless chicken style
This is linked to organisation, which manifests itself glaringly in how we defend set pieces. We have all players back, we have a load of big players yet one decent delivery and we are all sea. I expect us to concede on every set play
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