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There is no such thing as a natural DM - it wasn't even a position till a few years ago. Ivanovic, Ferreira, JT, SFL, Essien, Ramires, could all do it well. A small squad means that players magically become flexible - just as they do at all the other PL clubs. It is not DMs we are short of, just players.

Unfortunately--or fortunately depending on your stance on the progression of the position--the DM is very much part of modern football. Maka gave a name to it and ever since the position has developed according to the needs of the manager as well as the traits of the individual employed.

Mikel is an interesting one, whose talent has allowed him to approach the position in various ways. Jose used him very much as he did with Maka - a 'pure' DM, one whose role is to close space and shepherd danger. Scolari, on the other hand, used Mikel as a glorified 3rd CB, one who'd drop deep to fill space for advancing FB's. Carlo likes his DM's to be forward thinking and instigators of attacks, a role which may suit Mikel to the tee.

Essien, as you mentioned, can do it well - that is play the way Carlo prefers it, even if the Bison is a bit too wanton with his passing at times. Ramires could do it as well, in more of a terrier style but certainly not the way Carlo wants it. And therein lies the problem.

Resorting to Bran, Paulo, or JT, all of whom have never played in midfield just reinforces my point - we lack DM's, or more specifically, we lack midfielders. I suppose in that sense we agree on a shortage of players.

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Unfortunately--or fortunately depending on your stance on the progression of the position--the DM is very much part of modern football. Maka gave a name to it and ever since the position has developed according to the needs of the manager as well as the traits of the individual employed.

Rubbish. DM's have been around for ages and it did not start with Maka, no matter how much we all would like to glorify him.

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paulw66   

There is no such thing as a natural DM - it wasn't even a position till a few years ago.

Define "a few years ago"...... Hoddle used a DM as soon as he took over in 1993. The player of choice was generally Eddie Newton.

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Define "a few years ago"...... Hoddle used a DM as soon as he took over in 1993. The player of choice was generally Eddie Newton.
Hugely underrated in the role as well.

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paulw66   

Hugely underrated in the role as well.

Steady Eddie....never the same after his broken leg.

I remember Gullit saying he wasn't going to try and buy Paul Ince because he had Newton for that role.

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There is no such thing as a natural DM - it wasn't even a position till a few years ago.

Define "a few years ago"...... Hoddle used a DM as soon as he took over in 1993. The player of choice was generally Eddie Newton.

Well I am using the term in the way A Blue Essien used it in the post I replied to - which was the Maka role.

The point being that expecting every team to have a player who plays the way Maka did is pointless because there are so many ways to line up and so many ways to play the different roles.

Going back to Hoddle, my memory is that Hoddle himself played that role first of all, and that it was called the sweeper role.

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JT and Lamps were out of the England squad any news of them coming back?

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I've lost track -- does Bosingwa have an estimated time of return that is reliable? The silence about him seems deafening, although if Bran comes back at full strength it would be interesting who would win that battle. Bran really made that position his own last year.

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