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Michael Tucker

Tiemoue Bakayako

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28 minutes ago, MikelBlue said:

Everyone's favorite scapegoat of the moment.

Positives: Athleticism. Can get up and down the pitch. Good height and uses it well. Can tackle (yes, he does foul but overall a good tackler). Has good pace for a CM and from a pure athleticism consideration best compliments Kante in a 2 man midfield (343 or other variants).

Negatives: Overall skill level is below par relative to requirements on all fronts. Overall tactical awareness needs improvement. 

My 0.5 year verdict: The potential is definitely there and while he has a slow start to his CFC career, the young man requires patience and continued work off and on the training pitch. In a weird way, he reminds of the Sallah and KDB situations, two players who looked out of sorts on the team but after a few years elsewhere are now tearing up the league with one or the other, barring injuries, a certain bet for player of the season. Ironically, I feel he has more upside than Drinkwater and fits Conte's philosophy better notwithstanding that DD has played a bit better so far. The good thing for me so far is I see a player still working hard for the team notwithstanding the criticisms. His head has not dropped. As long as he keeps working hard, I feel his overall performances will improve over the next series of games.

I thought he was pretty good against Norwich until Kante came on.

I thought he was pretty good during the first few games of the season before Kante was back .

I think he cannot play with Kante and cannot get to grips with Kantes swashbuckling  style , never quite sure where Kante needs him to be .

A bit of a conundrum for Conte to go with two totally different styles of striker and a squad thinner than my hair.

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47 minutes ago, Mark Kelly said:

I thought he was pretty good against Norwich until Kante came on.

I thought he was pretty good during the first few games of the season before Kante was back .

I think he cannot play with Kante and cannot get to grips with Kantes swashbuckling  style , never quite sure where Kante needs him to be .

Against Norwich I thought he was very poor, considering he was playing the kind of role he did well in (in Kante's place) earlier this seaason  - as you point out.
After Kante came on it was like we were down to 10 men/9men/8men and his dog, spot.  He was wandering around but no one would pass to him, while the very motivated Morata and the ever eager Kante were like jackals to the ball and the guy in between was just a spectator.

He's a CB.  

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xCELERYx   

As I echoed in the Brighton match day thread. 

He's become a bit of an easy target for many lately. I thought his performance against Brighton was probably one of his best all-round performances to date. Overall, he does a serviceable job and allows Kante that extra freedom - although this can at times cause a bit of confusion between the two tactically and positionally. 

He's a solid tackler and breaks up the play well - while being statistically our best midfielder when it comes to making clearances. Naturally, there's still improvement needed in areas. His passing for one still needs to be executed better - hopefully allowing him to keep it simple will aid that. His awareness at times lacks and I think some of that has to do with the pace of the EPL a little. Can get caught on the ball at times and could learn to use his strong frame more to protect possession better. Won't be the dynamic sort of player that Kante is, or Essien was, but can still be a good player in his own right. A bonus would be if he can improve his finishing at times, that way the powerful runs he does make going forward can have a bit more purpose and danger about them. 

Hopefully with a season under his belt - followed by an injury free run and an actual pre-season, next season he'll be better equipped to make a greater impact overall. 

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jangz   
4 hours ago, xCELERYx said:

As I echoed in the Brighton match day thread. 

He's become a bit of an easy target for many lately. I thought his performance against Brighton was probably one of his best all-round performances to date. Overall, he does a serviceable job and allows Kante that extra freedom - although this can at times cause a bit of confusion between the two tactically and positionally. 

He's a solid tackler and breaks up the play well - while being statistically our best midfielder when it comes to making clearances. Naturally, there's still improvement needed in areas. His passing for one still needs to be executed better - hopefully allowing him to keep it simple will aid that. His awareness at times lacks and I think some of that has to do with the pace of the EPL a little. Can get caught on the ball at times and could learn to use his strong frame more to protect possession better. Won't be the dynamic sort of player that Kante is, or Essien was, but can still be a good player in his own right. A bonus would be if he can improve his finishing at times, that way the powerful runs he does make going forward can have a bit more purpose and danger about them. 

Hopefully with a season under his belt - followed by an injury free run and an actual pre-season, next season he'll be better equipped to make a greater impact overall. 

Quite the opposite to be honest.. he likes to carry the ball forward and can do so at real pace.. and with his strength it would be very difficult to stop him..

The problem with him is he is not the most intelligent player.. he doesnt see danger quick enough and hence positioning is always suspect as you put there.. as for an easy target I agree and have called it out multiple times in this thread.. he has the attributes to be a really strong player for us but needs a lot of work before he gets there .. probably atleast another 12 months, so we need to be patient and hope he improves. He still is quite young.

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11 hours ago, xCELERYx said:

He's become a bit of an easy target for many lately.

I think there is a degree of this ... There's always a player or two who get singled out and find themselves being blamed for everything that is wrong in the world. I'd say that's an assessment if football fans and forum users more than Bakayoko though; he doesn't deserve some of the outright abuse he might get, but he's having such a poor debut season that I'm now pleased when he has a bang-average game where his best contribution is simply not screwing anything up.

I hope it is just a new league and lack of pre-season. He is, on paper and in theory, my favourite kind of footballer.

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There was an article I read somewhere a couple days ago that he actually covers more ground than expected and had good passing stats and interceptions etc. so maybe there is an element to his style of play that leaves him vulnerable to excessive criticism.

I remember a lot of the same for Ballack in terms of his style who I eventually grew to LOVE as a player. I was very critical of Bakayoko from the get go but, to be honest, Drinkwater hasnt been great when called upon either and Bakayoko is very athletic so I suppose its anyones guess whether he should be in the starting lineup so often.

I am still not hopeful at all about him but I reckon he has improved slightly and there aren't any great options banging on the door right now.

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paulw66   
On 1/21/2018 at 11:35 AM, thevelourfog said:

I think there is a degree of this ... There's always a player or two who get singled out and find themselves being blamed for everything that is wrong in the world. I'd say that's an assessment if football fans and forum users more than Bakayoko though; he doesn't deserve some of the outright abuse he might get, but he's having such a poor debut season that I'm now pleased when he has a bang-average game where his best contribution is simply not screwing anything up.

I hope it is just a new league and lack of pre-season. He is, on paper and in theory, my favourite kind of footballer.

At one stage a few weeks ago, Willian was hopeless, and every time Cahill was starting, we are starting a goal down. 

There is always a scapegoat, and at the moment it is Baka. Someone in the Brighton MDF was complaining about his poor passing, despite a 94.8% success rate. He also made 7 ball recoveries.

I have seen enough of him to think there is a player in there somewhere. He was brilliant at Atletico earlier on this season, and I thought we had signed a beast of a player. Central midfield is probably the hardest place to adapt to the PL from a slower one where players aren't nipping at your ankles all game. 

Full pre season, and after a year to acclimatise - that will be the time to make a judgement. 

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22 minutes ago, paulw66 said:

Someone in the Brighton MDF was complaining about his poor passing, despite a 94.8% success rate.

I doubt it was the poor passing per se.   Just his inability when unchallenged, to receive the ball from a CB, turn around and look up to make a pass forward.  Or at least pass it first time to a CB in the direction he was facing.
As for the stats, if whoscored is right, then he made 18 passes backwards from inside his own half.  Most of them from around the centre circle.

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paulw66   
7 minutes ago, Droy was my hero said:

I doubt it was the poor passing per se.   Just his inability when unchallenged, to receive the ball from a CB, turn around and look up to make a pass forward.  Or at least pass it first time to a CB in the direction he was facing.
As for the stats, if whoscored is right, then he made 18 passes backwards from inside his own half.  Most of them from around the centre circle.

I appreciate stats can be used to suit an argument, so I don't take the percentage as an indication he did anything that brilliant, but I don't see anything wrong when 2,3 or 4 nil up with retaining possession, keeping it safe 

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25 minutes ago, paulw66 said:

I appreciate stats can be used to suit an argument, so I don't take the percentage as an indication he did anything that brilliant, but I don't see anything wrong when 2,3 or 4 nil up with retaining possession, keeping it safe 

Sure but it was basically his inability to receive the ball from behind him, turn around unchallenged and look up that was so awful.  It is a pretty core skill if he is going to play CM.

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