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Everything posted by ja1

  1. Mikel John Obi

    Does anyone think a younger Mikel could have worked as a Jorginho back up? He would defo work in terms of he’s happy to be a squad player/not rotate and just play cup/Europa games unless Jorgi is injured. Not quite sure/or even remember if he had Jorgi’s ability to always look for the ball and awareness of those around him when building up play from our defensive third under press. He of course does have his ability of ball retention over 5-15 yards.
  2. 3. Marcos Alonso

    Every team needs players like Azpi. He is limited offensively, but if we had proper attacking lb, if our midfielders created something and our attackers scored goals, Azpi limitations wouldnt be evident at all. ————————————— I do agree with this. I think if we had a LB who can truly pin down and own the left hand side Azpilicueta isn’t a problem. He is now but I’ll go into why I think he is.. At Napoli Hysaj was basically Azpi I believe, at times almost a 3rd CB while Ghoulam marauded forward. We tried that at the start of the season. Alonso did have almost wingback like freedom. Got a few fluke assists / a goal and Sarri stared his whole best LB in the world thing. Azpi tended to stay back. When I believe he started to realise Alonso isn’t actually good going forward, or more specifically, not good enough to be given a free role with the risk of our LHS being open, it is more of a tandem system now. In fact I think the exact moment it may have happened was vs United..in the first half Alonso did his typical goalhanging act and Rashford took advantage of it a few times. After HT Alonso was noticeably more reserved. Now you can see that if one full back overlaps the other stays back so it’s more of a 50/50 system, not just on Alonso. Alonso still does his random runs into the box but if play switches and Azpilicueta overlaps he doesn’t stay there and retreats - under Conte or early Sarri he stays in the box until the attack is over. So my point is..there’s more onus on Azpi to attack as Alonso isn’t good at attacking. A better LB going forward could allow Azpilicueta to go back to a more defensive, Hysaj like role that suits him rather than a two way full back. In a perfect world...we have someone who is, well like Reece James would be if/when he reaches his potential. Defensively strong if he has to stay back and be the 3rd CB/defensive RB and equally adept if we want to attack opponent’s LHS more, overlapping threat. But still, I do think if we sort LB (and striker and winger and maybe CM) out first Azpilicueta is much less of an issue.
  3. 3. Marcos Alonso

    Not sure on the accuracy of this, that is making rounds on Twitter, but it could well be roughly right based on his new contract. Disappointed but not surprised if true. The club and fans like to tie themselves down to ‘hard working’ mediocrity like Alonso:
  4. 3. Marcos Alonso

    He has played the majority of games with Morata and Giroud who are good in the air. The likes of Emerson, Zappa and Azpi all have around twice the success rate playing with the same players. Last season he managed a pathetic two league assists as a wingback while Azpi managed 6, from crosses, to Morata. Alonso’s stats for crossing look bad because he’s bad at crossing, not all these excuses.
  5. Leandro Paredes

    Given Sarri doesn’t rotate even with talented players in reserve and Jorginho is literally *his* player, I don’t think there’s any chance there will be competition so to speak for Jorginho’s place, more so he replaces Fab as back up. I did question this - he basically seems overqualified as a back up player in a position we will not rotate, but then it’s still good for us we have such a good player in reserve, if not good for him.
  6. 3. Marcos Alonso

    Liverpool and City have no issues with having a relatively small starting XI. For Liverpool only their CBs + Fabinho if he starts are aerial threats. For City it is literally just their CBs as aerial threats. I don’t think we lose that much defensively if we lose Alonso, Emerson has actually been quite strong positionally for aerial balls in an admittedly small sample size. For attacking set pieces Alonso is one of our players with a clear role in our routines, but hey, Emerson also brings many things to the team Alonso doesn’t in other areas.
  7. Leandro Paredes

    If this happens it would be a good move as he’s clearly a good and talented player. But to me I wonder why he’d go for the move, he’s clearly talented and could start at his pick of top clubs. Here he would be rotation player in a position Sarri barely rotates. Sarri already has a firm favourite who’s unlikely to be usurped for however long Sarri is here. I did think perhaps he’s just after the money, don’t know the circumstances into moving to Zenit but it well could have been a money move.
  8. 24. Reece James

    Hes not given any Gs or As ————————- I believe he has 1 goal and 1 assist. I can understand why you’d look at it and think it’s not impressive but it’s a good example of stats do not tell the full story. At last check, 2-3 weeks ago, Reece had attempted 160 crosses and completed around 40 of them. This is crazy numbers - top PL full backs at the same point in time had attempted about 60 with a similar, even slightly lower success rate than Reece (other than Alonso who has a very poor success rate of below 10%). You can see in the figure I posted above he is in the division’s best (well, he IS the best out of all full backs on that list) for accurate crosses / 90. He also manages 1.6 key passes per game which, again , is exceptional for a full back. Amongst U23 players of any position in the Championship it is one of the best figures. This stat is referring to December, from whoscored’s Twitter: Reece James : 17 goalscoring chances created was the third highest in the Championship last month. (WhoScored) To further exemplify how good these stats are here’s a nice little article with some comparisons between Hysaj and James: https://chelseaecho.com/2019/01/01/how-good-is-reece-james-do-we-actually-need-elseid-hysaj/ Yes it is the Championship, but still you would hardly expect a 19 year old RB from Wigan to be this dominate in so many areas over the starting RB of a top Serie A team. And again, it exemplifies how good his crossing and key passing stats are. All in all it paints a picture that he’s a highly creative full back who doesn’t see the many chances he creates finished off.
  9. 24. Reece James

    Reece vs other Championship full backs
  10. 9. Tammy Abraham

    A PL loan makes sense if he’s to a team that plays good stuff and will start every game. Wolves do play good stuff unlike the other teams Tammy was linked with but my feeling is he gets minimal game time so I don’t see it being beneficial. Selling him there does make sense as when Jiminez goes at the end of his loan Tammy is there to take his place. But as it stands Wolves play with one striker and Jiminez is doing well. They don’t have a good back up and sometimes use Traore up front. Abraham I feel is bridging that gap for them, and not coming in to start for them. But I may be wrong, a few people think Nuno wants to play 3-5-2.
  11. Ben Chilwell

    I think if Emerson was starting every game at Leicester he’d probably look just as impressive. Just my feeling.
  12. Farland Mendy

    We haven’t been linked with him but should we ever get in the market for a new Lb (and we really should) this guy would probably be top of the list for a realistic option. Many rate him as the next best elite left back, he appears to have all the strengths you’d want from a modern LB - pace, strength, dribbling ability, crossing, and playmaking ability. If we were to go for a LB I’m sure many would agree the gold standard would be to get an Alex Telles or Sandro and keep Alonso/Emerson as back up. However failing that I wonder if this guy would be a ‘next best’ type of signing, who could also well be cheaper.
  13. Leandro Paredes

    A good player but why would we sign him to back up Jorginho, ie he’s way too talented for that in a position we will not rotate. If anything he probably has more potential than Jorginho.
  14. Ben Chilwell

    He is a good player but to me he has a similar skill set, potential and quality to Emerson. Should maybe aim for someone bit better.
  15. Ethan Ampadu

    What do you guys think on him in midfield? I still think his future is at CB but he has improved in a midfield role. However I still find it interesting people see him as a Fabregas/Jorginho player..to me he’s like a destroyer in midfield, strong, aggressive. Still good defensively. One interesting note is that a lot of people point to his Wales performances as why he should play in midfield. Although he’s had some top performances for them he has also had 1-2 weak performances for Wales that got brushed over. Might seem very harsh to bring it up against a young player but it also ties in that for me, every time I see him at CB, I think he plays very well. In midfield, sometimes he doesn’t. But keeping an open mind. He’ll probably flitter between both for the time being, especially under Sarri as he not only seems him as a DM but also as a CM on top of CB.
  16. 24. Reece James

    Interestingly he played CM tonight for Wigan in FA Cup vs West Brom. Top performance there as well apparently, Wigan fans are literally in love with him. little clip from the game:
  17. Nabil Fekir

    I don’t believe he’s ever played as an 8 in his career, or at least since he’s blown up at Lyon. While I’m sure he could do it there not sure where it came from, seemed to start when he was linked with Liverpool and they assumed him as a a Coutinho replacement in midfield. He has played as RW for France.
  18. 19. Mason Mount

    He has had a relatively quiet month or so but appears to be back to his best last three games.
  19. 3. Marcos Alonso

    Even if they go in he’s still not good enough, but them not going in just exemplifies that he performs like this all the time, and him having a ‘good game’ is when he happens to pop up with an assist or goal.
  20. 3. Marcos Alonso

    18/19 PL LBs Crosses Andrew Robertson : 8/53 (13%) Benjamin Mendy : 11/47 (18%) Ben Davies : 7/32 (17%) Marcos Alonso : 4/58 (6%) Sead Kolasinac : 5/18 (27%) Luke Shaw : 8/34 (23%)
  21. 12. Ruben Loftus-Cheek

    I’ve said before but imo..people get too fixated on him playing as a CM. Having said that I agree with above posters, I like how he has improved parts of his game that mean in long term future he could be a CM. His energy and tenacity is better, his shooting technique and willingness to shoot has improved. However his stand out skill is still his dribbling. He’s an excellent dribbler, I agree that he is the second best in our team at dribbling, after Hazard. He can do it in the middle of the pitch or at close spaces inside the box or on the wing (which for example someone like Barkley couldn’t, the latter). He’s the type of player that, wherever he plays (as in, in whichever league) he’d be top of dribbling charts and most fouled charts. These types of players are usually wingers. It is to me, no surprise Sarri uses him there. There’s not many players like RLC around but if I was to compare him to someone it would be Julian Draxler, another tall player but in essence his excellent dribbling means he’s used as a winger/AM. Draxler is probably a better passer and shooter, while RLC is stronger. Both *can* play in CM but are equally if not more adept on the wing or in advanced positions. RLC’s best ‘plays’ still usually come in advanced positions, where you’d expect an AM or winger to be. He could still develop as a CM, but he could also be a more advanced player, I’m kind of open to both.
  22. 3. Marcos Alonso

    I have to agree. He would still not be good enough at wingback and suffers from the same strengths and weaknesses we are all aware of. His performances wouldn’t change at wingback. What would change, and the reason he is more suited to wingback, is because, as I’ve said before, he does have a strength of positioning himself in the box for key moments in a match. Even if the rest of his game is horrible in a match he can do that and end up with a goal or assist. He can do this less as a normal full back. Under Conte he literally had a free role. Under Sarri if Azpi overlaps Alonso stays back outside the box. As much as I don’t rate the guy, as a wingback or full back, his record at wingback for combined g+a can’t be ignored. I personally think his goals output (his assist output tbh at wingback is poor, 2-3 assist per season under Conte) is boosted via free kicks and the fact the guy literally had no competition for two years. I do wonder if other players with a semblance of attacking threat would get similar g+a output if they played as a wingback for two years, every single game. For instance Matt Doherty is matching Alonso-as-a-wingback numbers this season. Alas I’m kind of just wittering on... tldr: imo Alonso is not good enough at wingback or full back. But being at wingback does suit what he’s good at more.
  23. 3. Marcos Alonso

    He is fantastic and despite only really coming into the fore this time last year for Liverpool, should’ve got in the PFA team of the year. Great two way full back. Having said that I don’t think anyone predicted his rise from watching him at Hull.
  24. 3. Marcos Alonso

    I don’t think I’m harsh in saying he was just average yesterday. Well, poor first half and average, bare minimum in the second. It is still not enough. The obvious weak link in the defence yesterday.
  25. 24. Reece James

    Your description is basically Reece. He is a great crosser, I’ve seen him described before as already world class at crossing and I wouldn’t argue against it. He is strong and aggressive which helps him defensively. He has a good passing range, both long and short, and is good at FKs. Comfortable on the ball. From this perspective he reminds me of TAA - TAA probably better long passing though. Pace wise some people think he is slow, I don’t think so. He’s not lightening quick but hardly a slouch. Again TAA is probably at a similar level for pace, or someone like Ryan Bertrand. Maybe not as fast as Mendy. Dribbling he is ok at, certainly capable of a nice dribble but maybe not a consistent one v one player like say Ben Chilwell or even our own Emerson. Defensively he’s good too, as I said, strong and aggressive, uses pace well, good tackler. It is a strength to his game, he is hard to dominate as a winger I feel.