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GURJ SS   
42 minutes ago, paulw66 said:

Without sounding too sensational, he was SO bad against Watford, we would have been better starting with 10.

All of their early pressure came from his errors. If he wasn't there, they would not have been able to pass it to him to give it away. 

He had a very bad game, and when he got sent off we were always up against it. But our problems started way before Watford and Baka is just a small percentage of them.

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BlueWill   
48 minutes ago, paulw66 said:

Without sounding too sensational, he was SO bad against Watford, we would have been better starting with 10.

All of their early pressure came from his errors. If he wasn't there, they would not have been able to pass it to him to give it away. 

Hmm 0-0 when he went off and the final score 1-4.

.

 

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BlueWill   
2 hours ago, Kezza said:

Gladnot having to see Bakayoko. That in itself means we will win!

The other culprits remain.

In a team game it is never one player who represents the entire problem. Easy to think that whilst watching or to argue it in the pub! AC has to decide the problem(s) and provide the solution(s) from available resources, both before and during games. Everyone can actually see and decide for themselves if he was right or wrong.

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A major problem recently has been that when pressed we are unable to move the ball successfully from defenders/defensive midfielders to our 3 attacking players. Bakayoko and Cahill have been major parts of this. Kanté has to play but whoever plays next to him has to be at least as good as him at passing. Otherwise massive gaps develop between our lines and we can never get out.

Fabregas and a striker providing an out ball as a variant are the obvious solutions.

Interested to see if Luiz is 'finished' as has been said or if he's still carrying an injury.

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1 minute ago, chiswickblue said:

Interested to see if Luiz is 'finished' as has been said or if he's still carrying an injury.

Whatever it is, it isn't injury.  He is fit enough when he needs to play, and has finished every game he started in since end October when he stopped being first choice. 

4 starts, a 33 min sub appearance and 5 non-playing sub in 24 games.  Fit, just not really wanted by the coach.  

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GURJ SS   
4 hours ago, chiswickblue said:

A major problem recently has been that when pressed we are unable to move the ball successfully from defenders/defensive midfielders to our 3 attacking players. Bakayoko and Cahill have been major parts of this. Kanté has to play but whoever plays next to him has to be at least as good as him at passing. Otherwise massive gaps develop between our lines and we can never get out.

Fabregas and a striker providing an out ball as a variant are the obvious solutions.

Interested to see if Luiz is 'finished' as has been said or if he's still carrying an injury.

Last season the ball was played through the middle and then out wide when our wingbacks were facing towards the opposition's goals, this season the ball has been played out wide early which means our wingbacks have been facing our goals when receiving the ball; this has resulted in the opposition being able to press onto us in numbers due to us not having enough players further forward to feed the ball into the likes of Hazard. By the time we've managed to get the ball to Hazard after the 10th attempt, the opposition has slotted into their tactical positions.

A midfield two of Cesc and Kante will be able to receive the ball and then get it wide or to players in more advanced positions, any other combination of two central midfielders and we simply haven't got the quality to make it happen. In a 4231, the central mids are supported by the fullbacks and AMs while the striker pushes forward; even route one to striker works because they've got the AMs around them and the central mids can sit while the fullbacks support(as long as the fullbacks and AMs are good enough, the central mids can get away with just being ball winners). In a 343, the central mids are required to be in position for 90mins, break play, control the pace of the game and support every attack, ideally they should be able to work box to box and able to take an opponent on in a 1v1 situation; or at least have an understanding of one moving and one sticking.

For now Cesc and Kante are the right combination but we desperately need better quality central mids to add to them.

I think Conte realised that Christensen is the player to build the defence on and that means Luiz can't play anymore, and Luiz doesn't have the discipline to play on then he outer parts of the back 3. If I was Conte I'd pair Luiz in midfield with Kante as I think he'd be able to bring some presence to that area.

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1 minute ago, GURJ SS said:

Last season the ball was played through the middle and then out wide when our wingbacks were facing towards the opposition's goals, this season the ball has been played out wide early which means our wingbacks have been facing our goals when receiving the ball; this has resulted in the opposition being able to press onto us in numbers due to us not having enough players further forward to feed the ball into the likes of Hazard. By the time we've managed to get the ball to Hazard after the 10th attempt, the opposition has slotted into their tactical positions.

Certainly the old ball to Costa and back doesn't work so well any more.  In part because Costa isn't there, and in part because mostly just 1 AM is near him.  But I think it is mostly just down to the team being more tired, and the micro-tactics adjusted to push the players a lot less.  

There is an age old idea in football that when one team begins to dominate the other in midfield, the advantage will be felt in room out wide as the oppo have to crowd the midfield to maintain some control.  That is how our WBs looked so good last year.  Not by being brilliant WBs (Alonso is good, but Moses isn't really good by average PL club level).  But through the efforts of the other 8 outfield players outbattling 9 or 10 opponents to create a free role out wide.

So I think the real thing that is going on is that opponents are matching us player for player in the middle AND then matching us out wide out wide too.  I don't see it as much as a change in tactics, but simply a failure to dominate the play as much as before.  And as ever while CMs always get the credit/blame when you do of fail to dominate, it really is something every out field player is part of.  And of course Hazard and Morata are no longer expected to get their hands dirty by fighting to win the ball as Hazard and Costa did last season.

And I think it is not so much the WBs are facing the wrong direction, just facing an opponent 3 or 4 m away.

 

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Will Alonso be fit for this one, rumours that he missed the Watford game because his hamstring was playing up

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1 hour ago, GURJ SS said:

I think Conte realised that Christensen is the player to build the defence on and that means Luiz can't play anymore, and Luiz doesn't have the discipline to play on then he outer parts of the back 3. If I was Conte I'd pair Luiz in midfield with Kante as I think he'd be able to bring some presence to that area.

I personally think Azpi Luiz Christensen could be our best and most balanced defence, hard to tell because I think we've only seen it for 20 minutes. I agree that Luiz only really fits in the middle of the 3 but I can't see why Christensen couldn't play on the left of the 3, he usually plays it short and safe as opposed to Luiz who brings the ball out or plays it long. I think Luiz gives us another option tbh he has that ball over the top or even dribbling the ball out of defence. Luiz will have to get his head straight to play regularly again for us though we've seen before how poor he can be when he seems disinterested, a couple of times on Monday he was strolling around ball watching. Hopefully it was a fitness issue, I think if he is committed and the coach trusts him he is an asset worth keeping due to the above.

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1 hour ago, Droy was my hero said:

There is an age old idea in football that when one team begins to dominate the other in midfield, the advantage will be felt in room out wide as the oppo have to crowd the midfield to maintain some control.  That is how our WBs looked so good last year.  Not by being brilliant WBs (Alonso is good, but Moses isn't really good by average PL club level).  But through the efforts of the other 8 outfield players outbattling 9 or 10 opponents to create a free role out wide.

So I think the real thing that is going on is that opponents are matching us player for player in the middle AND then matching us out wide out wide too.  I don't see it as much as a change in tactics, but simply a failure to dominate the play as much as before.  And as ever while CMs always get the credit/blame when you do of fail to dominate, it really is something every out field player is part of.


 

This almost reads like youre saying we miss Matic's presence in the middle ;-)

  • Haha 4

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