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About chiswickblue

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  1. Both Man City and Spurs have attacked two of our defensive weaknesses - Cahill and Alonso's lack of speed and Azpilicueta and Moses's lack of aerial power. So trying to make runs down the inside left channel and then swinging balls over to the far post has become the default way to attach us. This is of course compounded by a lack of midfield defensive support. Player-wise I think a switch of sides for Cahill and Azpilicueta could help compensate for the weaknesses of the wingbacks, as could seeing if Zouma can play RCB with Azpilicueta at LCB. In midfield we're still looking for the perfect player to play alongside Kante, or we could switch to three in the middle with only Hazard and Costa up front. If there was a perfect time for these weaknesses to be exposed it's January, when we can make changes to the squad and the FA Cup provides a chance for experimenting with the team.
  2. I don't think our Christmas schedule is as demanding as in recent years. After today's game we have 9 days til the next, then 5 days break and then 3. Basically one game a weekend, other than the Spurs game which is immediately followed by the FA cup. So I don't expect any widespread changes to the team, injuries permitting, other than our existing 'tactical' options of Matic or Fabregas, Pedro or Willian. I think the other 9 will play every match. Then lots of changes for the cup and then we go back to a game a week.
  3. Can we discuss the squad as it is now and how it needs to be improved without comparing it to last season? Ideally Cahill, Alonso, Matic and Pedro will become squad players and we'll have stronger players in their positions after the next two windows. Plus an alternative to Moses.
  4. Finally a selection dilemma! Matic or Fabregas, Pedro or Willian? Not playing in Europe is such a blessing. Can you imagine playing away on the continent three days after yesterday's physical and emotional ordeal? I know that my nerves need at least a week to recover.
  5. Without wanting to jump into the fun and games in the transfer forum these should be our priorities for strengthening the squad in the next two windows, in order of urgency: LWB (Alonso is the only option) CM (with Mikel, Fabregas and RLC seemingly not considered we only have 3) AM (we have 4 possible options at present) CB (can Terry and Zouma fit into 3-4-3?) RWB (can Willian play there? Aina is more of a defender and needs a couple more years) ST (can Batshuayi settle?)
  6. I think our team is: Courtois Azpi Luiz Placeholder Moses Kanté Placeholder Placeholder Placeholder Costa Hazard Lots of work to do in the next two transfer windows to build a consistent team that can challenge on all fronts.
  7. Based on the squad above, which doesn't include the 3 extra players from the academy, we need at least 3-5 senior players in before we start signing replacements. This squad is too light for this season, let alone if we play European football next season.
  8. He should coach one of our youth teams whilst doing his badges and hopefully before too long he can be involved with the first team.
  9. Moses won't be going to Gabon as Nigeria didn't qualify.
  10. I'd rather we bought someone to compete with Matic for a starting place. As well as someone back from loan who can cover for Alonso. If Mikel and/or Fabregas leave it should be at the end of the season. The only January departure should be a loan for RLC (and MvG).
  11. If I could do strikethrough on my phone I'd cross out "v Barca".
  12. The Italian Dennis Wise sounds perfect to me. I don't see any reason to let Fabregas go though, even if he doesn't fit into the starting XI in the current formation there will be times when we need someone to come off the bench and pick the lock, and I don't see any better options anywhere for doing that. A new option like Verratti would take the place of Mikel or RLC, not Fabregas.
  13. I think we really have a 14 or 15 man squad for the formation we're playing. The starting XI plus Terry, maybe Chalobah, Willian and Batshuayi. None of our other players really fit in to the shape or represent an acceptable drop-off in quality. Plenty of buying and selling to be done in the next two windows to compliment our new spine - Courtois, Luiz, Kanté, Hazard and Costa. I think playing the box shape in midfield helps Hazard much more than a cross shape with a player holding and Hazard behind the striker.
  14. Because he's a boyhood Chelsea fan of course
  15. With the terribly unbalanced, small squad that we have we're doing very well to be in the position we're in. I just hope we can make it to January without major injuries or player fatigue and try and sign another usable central midfielder and a wing-back (perhaps back from loan).