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Michael Tucker

Perth Glory 0 Chelsea 1

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19 hours ago, Martin1905 said:

I'm the same regarding Morata. I really do think there's a top class player there but he seriously needs to man up.

I know it's only pre season but we probably don't need to see any more to know nothing is going to change. Zaffo called it very early on and he got it spot on.

I know many on here don't rate or want Higuain for various reasons but I think he would score bucket loads of goals in this team.

On a side note I'm probably Barkleys biggest critic on here but even I will admit he looked very good yesterday, albeit against a pub team in pre season. He may find himself in the starting line up at the beginning of the season by default, it will be up to him to take his chance.

It's only down to having the advantage of previously watching him regularly while he was at Juve. After watching him last season regularly again, I'd be confident in saying he hasn't improve his game in any aspect in that four year span. Something that is highly concerning given he's now a soon to be 26 year old. I think at this stage he'll always be that player that shows some promising traits, but ultimately has an above average ceiling in terms of ability and is largely hampered by attitude, mentality, and consistency. Come to think of it, he reminds me a little of Antonio Cassano - although not quite to the same degree. 

While this was only a pre-season game and the first one of the season at that, he was dreadful.

If I was the club I'd be looking to cut our losses as quickly as possible. We'll be taking a financial hit, but that was a given when we stupidly forked over 60m pound to begin with. A completely ill fitted signing for the role we required him to play and the style of the PL in general. That said, I can also see him staying another 12 months if we can't bring in another replacement before the window closes. If that happens, he has to be third choice behind Giroud and Batshuayi until he proves otherwise.

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15 hours ago, jones said:

Ok, people in here talk about these huge squads all the time, but no top team does that. Had to do an analysis to prove it, checked the squad for the two best teams in Italy, Spain and England, all of whom mainly line up in 4-3-3.

I only included players with more than 300 minutes and adjusted for January transfer replacements (meaning Alexis and Mnhitaryan is 1 player).

Napoli (50 games): 8 defenders, 6 midfielders, 6 forwards

Juventus (55): 8 defenders, 6 midfielders, 6 forwards 

Real Madrid (62): 8 defenders, 7 midfielders, 6 forwards 

Barcelona (59): 8 defenders, 7 midfielders, 6 forwards 

Man City (57): 9 defenders, 7 midfielders, 5 forwards

Man Utd (55 games): 10 defenders, 6 midfielders, 6 forwards

And all of these squads include young players like Mayoral, Adarabiayo, McTominay etc so Ampadu and CHO should be included in this set up.

Average: 8.5 defenders, 6.5 midfielders, 5.83 fowards -> 21 outfield players

So yeah, double cover plus one extra man seems to be the standard and what we realisically can expect. It is costly both financially and for squad morale to have too many dissatisfied players. Finding the right balance is key, and it should also be taken into consideration that very few managers rotate as little as Sarri. The 20 outfield squad I posted certainly is not unrealistic (even if you clearly could have an extra man in there as well).


When did Napoli become a big team?

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6 hours ago, chiswickblue said:

2 outstanding 17 year olds = Ampadu and Hudson-Odoi. Keep them with the first team this year and play them (maybe in the CC and EL at first). By next summer, if not well before, they'll replace Pedro and Cahill/Luiz. Then next summer you introduce a couple more youngsters. It's a more sustainable way of building a squad and allows you to focus the big money on top class ready talent.

The great hopes for the last 10 years have been pretty much whittled down to CHO, Ampadu, RLC, and perhaps Mount and Abraham.  Still no one has broken properly into the first team*.  So while I agree CHO and Ampadu do look exceptional, and that the door should be open for them to force their way in, assuming that they will, is a step too far.  Assuming that the pipeline behind them is gushing more players is just guess work.


*Before anyone says Bertrand, he was never a great hope (success if funny that way), only played in the weakest Chelsea team of the past 15 years, and not much then.  

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