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Michael Tucker

West Brom 0 Chelsea 4

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8 hours ago, kev61 said:

All things being equal we are the only team that can challenge city this season - don't you think?.

34 points out of 36 is just stunning form, and they have proved they can beat 3 of the top 6 comfortably already.
No one can challenge City - and the real question is what happened to them last year and the year before when they were almost as rich in top class players.

As for us now, this is game One of 15 in 7 weeks.  There is plenty of better teams that can beat us, third but 4 clubs within 3 points of  us.  Even Arsenal, after an apparently dreadful start to the season are just 3 behind us.  
Much better than I feared, but a lot of games before the end of the season.

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A good win , hilariously inept ref as per usual , Hazard relentlessly clobbered , finally gives some back , gets a card , Cesc gets one for diving when he's clearly kicked (hilariously the bozo commentating made his mind up immediately, then despite all the evidence in the replay pretended that he was right and Cesc had dived , utter cobblers )

However , had we enjoyed the linesman from the Arsenal game we would have been one nil down Rondons weak header thrown into the net by Courtois , he's made some good saves recently but I'm far from convinced by him.

The best moment of the game was for me the interchange between Morata and Hazard which was sublime .

The next best was the fact that a clearly inflamed Hazard took the game to WBA as revenge for being kicked and booked , he needs to channel that more often .

A good win and a good performance , the Hazard Morata combination is really starting to gell.

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2 hours ago, Mark Kelly said:

The next best was the fact that a clearly inflamed Hazard took the game to WBA as revenge for being kicked and booked , he needs to channel that more often .

Yes.  We have heard the line that he likes being fouled because it proves he is worrying defenders.  There is some merit in that, but it won't discourage anyone from kicking him in the next game.

Retaliation in the form of goals is a much much better response.  The sooner people start worrying about the "Eden Hazard" - winding him up by kicking him, the safer he will be.

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7 hours ago, Droy was my hero said:

34 points out of 36 is just stunning form, and they have proved they can beat 3 of the top 6 comfortably already.
No one can challenge City 

Not when they're getting help from the refs, like yesterday..2 mins in and kompany brings down Vardy, who's clean through on goal, but ref only gives a yellow

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2 hours ago, WHYSOSLOWYEH said:

Not when they're getting help from the refs, like yesterday..2 mins in and kompany brings down Vardy, who's clean through on goal, but ref only gives a yellow

Refs or no refs, they are still miles ahead of us, Man U or anyone else.

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43 minutes ago, Droy was my hero said:

Refs or no refs, they are still miles ahead of us, Man U or anyone else.

Given their unlimited financial resources, amazingly generous sponsorships, and willingness to spend money like drunken sailors, it's hardly surprising though, is it?

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xCELERYx   
14 hours ago, Martin1905 said:

Been saying this for a while now. I'm not convinced we need 5 defenders on the pitch anymore, especially when you look at the players missing out. I'm even less convinced we need 5 defenders and 2 defensive midfielders.

We would be able to get more of our better players on the pitch if we switch back to 433.

5 at the back worked last year as it made us very good defensively, this year we are nowhere near as good defensively so for me it's not working. I can't see the point in playing 7 defensively minded players and leaving Pedro and Willian on the bench. 

The whole "5 defenders" thing is merely laziness when describing the system overall. We don't actually play with 5 defenders per say. Depending on the match situation it will often determine where our WB's take up the majority of their positions on the pitch. When we need to defend more then they'll tend to fall back deeper and form part of a 5 man defensive unit. When we're in control of games the WB's tend to be more advanced in their positioning and have greater involvement in that final third where they tend to be more midfielders than defenders. Simply labelling it as 5 defenders is doing a huge disservice to the work Conte has put into his 352/343 system and the players themselves. I mean, our WB's have often been influential in game and contribute more in attack than our AM's a lot of the time. Their role is one that's quite adaptable. 

Not having Pedro or Willian in the starting line up isn't weakening us. Willian has looked well off the pace for quite some time now (more or less since his mum passed away). Many here were slaughtering him earlier this year when he was playing because of his ineffective play - now all of a sudden he's the missing piece to making us "better"? Nah. He's a good player, one I like, but in Conte's system he doesn't offer us enough of what we need. While Pedro is a good foil for Hazard currently and provides a genuine alternative off the bench.  

433 would create more problems than positives in my opinion. What happens with Azpi and his CB role? Does he move to RB or LB? What happens at RB? Are Moses or Zappacosta good enough defensively to actually play as a genuine fullback? Marcos Alonso then becomes a bit of a problem at LB because of his lack of pace and playing closer to goal. He got away with it more in a more tactical Serie A. Would he do so here in the EPL? We'd also be somewhat negating his biggest strengths in terms of getting forward and chipping in with goals. The CM options aren't overly impacted. However, upfront we'd be returning to a single CF system. We'd once more be pushing Hazard out wide. Is that more beneficial than the partnership he's got with Morata currently? Is the inclusion of either Pedro and Willian more valuable than unsettling the side and creating potential problems in other areas? 

Overall it's a little more involved than just names on paper and it reading well. For me, 352 is the best fitting system for us and the players we have. 343 still has a place for now, but it may be shorter lived depending on what we target in the transfer windows.

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1 hour ago, Michael Tucker said:

Given their unlimited financial resources, amazingly generous sponsorships, and willingness to spend money like drunken sailors, it's hardly surprising though, is it?

My point earlier exactly.  The real surprise is they didn't walk away with the title in the previous 3 years.

4 minutes ago, xCELERYx said:

The whole "5 defenders" thing is merely laziness when describing the system overall. We don't actually play with 5 defenders per say.

You could say the same about the 343 or 352 thing too.  But I think you know what he means.  It isn't laziness, just his choice of words.


But we did start the last game with Zappacosta, Azpi, Christensen, Cahill, Alonso, Kante and Bakayoko.  That is 7 defensive players per se.
And if I recall we recently started 6 of those and Luiz instead of Kante.

In the end wherever the system (and more importantly the oppo players) demand that our players are stationed, we still have a lot of defensive players on the pitch, and very few attacking ones. 

5 minutes ago, xCELERYx said:

Not having Pedro or Willian in the starting line up isn't weakening us. Willian has looked well off the pace for quite some time now

I refer to 2014/15 and 2016/17.  Certainly it would be better if we had 4 proper AMs, instead 2 mostly fit, one very much out of form and one makeweight.
AMs have won us 2 titles in 3 years, and understrength there has cost us this season and 15/16.
AMs are winning Man City the league this season, and are entirely responsible for the recent successes of Liverpool and spurs.  

We are vastly weaker in not playing fit AMS and rotating them.  Whether that is because we just don't have fit ones, or because Conte chooses so is a good question though.

5 minutes ago, xCELERYx said:

Overall it's a little more involved than just names on paper and it reading well.

Yeah - we know.  Unless we have watched a lot of Italian football we are just not qualified to say.

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5 hours ago, WHYSOSLOWYEH said:

Not when they're getting help from the refs, like yesterday..2 mins in and kompany brings down Vardy, who's clean through on goal, but ref only gives a yellow

we know why the refs are giving Man City the title.  They have been ordered to do so by the overlords.

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DannyLB   
15 hours ago, Martin1905 said:

Been saying this for a while now. I'm not convinced we need 5 defenders on the pitch anymore, especially when you look at the players missing out. I'm even less convinced we need 5 defenders and 2 defensive midfielders.

We would be able to get more of our better players on the pitch if we switch back to 433.

5 at the back worked last year as it made us very good defensively, this year we are nowhere near as good defensively so for me it's not working. I can't see the point in playing 7 defensively minded players and leaving Pedro and Willian on the bench. 

Despite me liking this 352, I agree that a 433 would suit us really well too. 

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