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1 hour ago, Blue_In_Every_Way said:

Neither from me. 

Maybe it’s the neat but pointless dribbles people like to see...? I am assuming anyway. 

If you’re iniesta and at the end of the dribble you create loads of space and then get the ball advanced well ok I’ll gladly commend you. If all you’re doing is using up time on the ball instead of getting rid of it quickly enough then, sorry, it’s about time you lose your starting spot IMO.

Certainly we have a player who can destroy a team leaving as many holes as Liverpool did - and that guy never made it onto the pitch today.

That is pretty much why I can't get excited about him.  First couple of games I thought a good dribbler, would be better out on the wing, but not very creative, and only so so as a hard worker.  The more I see of him, the less creative he appears, and the more times he just recycles back to Jorgy.

I know he technically got the assist, but the hard work was the first ball to Hazard, Hazard's touch back and spin to the front line, Jorgy's one touch giving Kovacic all the time and space to look up and hear Hazard demanding the ball and make the easy pass.

For me 9 of the starting team are class players, Giroud falls a little short and so does Kovacic.  Fabregas and Pedro are top class too.
Certainly Kovacic, Cahill and last season's Christensen are the next best 3.  And certainly Barkley and Moses shouldn't be getting any more minutes.  But with all that talent about, I really can't see why anyone would make much of Kovacic.

53 minutes ago, kev61 said:

Would you have an opinion as to why we look so much better in midfield? - is it not obvious you to you that part of the reason is Kovacic and Jorginho? or do you hanker  back to the glory days of Fabregas and Bakayoko?.

Better than last season - is that even a question.  We have 3 midfield players rather than 2.  

Better than Liverpool - we weren't.  47% possession.

38 minutes ago, Never happy said:

Off topic, Chelsea v Derby in cup

Anything to do with SFL is never off topic.

Interesting - another game where I guess we will have to field a strong team and try to win.

Anyone know if Mason Mount can play against us in this?  Hope so.

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Droy doesn't rate player keeping Fabregas out of the side shock.

Edited by Mark Kelly
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kev61   
1 hour ago, Droy was my hero said:

That is pretty much why I can't get excited about him.  First couple of games I thought a good dribbler, would be better out on the wing, but not very creative, and only so so as a hard worker.  The more I see of him, the less creative he appears, and the more times he just recycles back to Jorgy.

I know he technically got the assist, but the hard work was the first ball to Hazard, Hazard's touch back and spin to the front line, Jorgy's one touch giving Kovacic all the time and space to look up and hear Hazard demanding the ball and make the easy pass.

For me 9 of the starting team are class players, Giroud falls a little short and so does Kovacic.  Fabregas and Pedro are top class too.
Certainly Kovacic, Cahill and last season's Christensen are the next best 3.  And certainly Barkley and Moses shouldn't be getting any more minutes.  But with all that talent about, I really can't see why anyone would make much of Kovacic.

Better than last season - is that even a question.  We have 3 midfield players rather than 2.  

Better than Liverpool - we weren't.  47% possession.

 

 

I will ask again why do you think we are so much better in midfield?.You discount Kovacic as a "hard worker" but very little else.I would rather have 11 hard workers with average talent than 5 minute wonders on the pitch.

From what I see Sarri is creating an identity and consistency in our play - will it last? I don't know but I have a feeling it will - now if only be would take a chance with a few younger players.

Edited by kev61

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17 minutes ago, kev61 said:

I will ask again why do you think we are so much better in midfield?.You discount Kovacic as a "hard worker" but very little else.I would rather have 11 hard workers with average talent than 5 minute wonders on the pitch.

You got an answer before - 50% more players.

Do you ever listen?

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24 minutes ago, kev61 said:

I will ask again why do you think we are so much better in midfield?.You discount Kovacic as a "hard worker" but very little else.I would rather have 11 hard workers with average talent than 5 minute wonders on the pitch.

From what I see Sarri is creating an identity and consistency in our play - will it last? I don't know but I have a feeling it will - now if only be would take a chance with a few younger players.

Agree on both counts Kev. We're doing OK I think, but CHO and Ampadu should be given a chance, not because it's good to give the youngsters a chance, but because they really are the best players in their positions that we have.

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3 minutes ago, PeteRobbo said:

Agree on both counts Kev. We're doing OK I think, but CHO and Ampadu should be given a chance, not because it's good to give the youngsters a chance, but because they really are the best players in their positions that we have.

Ampadu is better now than Cahill, Christensen, Rudiger and Luiz?  Seriously?

CHO is better than Hazard, Willian and Pedro, now?

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kev61   
40 minutes ago, Droy was my hero said:

Ampadu is better now than Cahill, Christensen, Rudiger and Luiz?  Seriously?

CHO is better than Hazard, Willian and Pedro, now?

Is CHO better than Moses?? and please less of the waffle answer this question directly and stop this cryptic pseudo trying to be intellectual nonsense.

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6 hours ago, Martin1905 said:

Do you mean they had more possession? 

Yeah. The stats I saw during the game said the second half they had 65% of possession and had racked up 581 passes compared to our 521 passes during the game.

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A few points. 

1. This was an excellent game of football. The speed, the technical ability and the spirit of the game was all amazing advertising for the Premier League. How often do you walk away from a game against Liverpool being able to say "1-1 was a fair result" after having had Daniel Sturridge score an absolute screamer in the 89th, and you don't even have to do it through gritted teeth? How often do you see the two managers embracing at the final whistle laughing? The ref did an excellent job as well. 

2. We are two months in and Sarri has transformed us completely with only two new players. Imagine how good we can be in a few months time? As others have hinted at, we are a few signings away from being genuine challengers to City. A striker and another attacking mid/winger and we are there.

3. There has been much made out of Sarri-ball and it's likely success against better sides. We have played two top 6 challengers and still not lost. Two at home and one away in a cup with strong line-ups. Our downfall this season won't be a leaking defence, it'll be our non-scoring strikers.

4. I see top 3 as our main goal this season with good cup runs as an added bonus. 

 

My ratings, 433:

Arrizabalaga: 8 - Looking more and more confident for eacg game and his distribution has also generally improved. Some excellent saves yesterday

Azpilicueta: 6 - Probably our worst performer on the night

Rüdiger: 7 - Good solid game from Toni

Luiz: 9* - Much like Cahill in midweek, Luiz was our focal point in defence. He led us defensively and took charge of the build-up phase. Created chances from his CB position - that's why he's the first CB in the team - he's unique. His face after Sturridges equaliser. It pained him...

Alonso: 7 - Solid if a bit uninspiring. He didn't get much done in attack but being faced with Salah would always restrict him

Kanté: 7 - Worked incredibly hard as always and is better with the ball then given credit for. But I'm expecting more from him to justify his inclusion 

Jorginho: 8 - His first 45 was a strong 8 and MoM. His second a 6. When given time he's world class, when under pressure it's different

Kovacic: 8 - Brilliant game yet again. Excellent movement, passing and dribbling. Sublime assist to Hazard

Willian: 7 - Good performance by Willian and he kept Robertson quiet 

Giroud: 6 - Worked hard for the team but had little to offer in attack

Hazard: 8 - Great goal and was our main attacking threat as usual

 

Subs:

Morata: 6 - Came on and looked a bit feisty, more hungry  

Barkley: 6 - Not sure whether Sarri doesn't feel Kovacic can play 90 mins still because it was a strange sub

Moses: 6 - I'm not expecting miracles. He came on and tried his best. 

 

Goals: 

1-0 Hazard (Kovacic)

1-1 Sturridge ()

 

Finally, let us finish with a quote from Sarri:

"The match was beautiful. I am happy with the performance, I am disappointed they scored in the last few minutes but I feel the draw is the right result.

"Hazard can score 40 goals this season, I really think this. He is a great player and a great man.

"We have started only two months ago I think [we are doing] very well. Maybe they [Liverpool] are one step ahead but I am starting to think we can recover in one season."

 

9 hours ago, Blue_In_Every_Way said:

Azpili looks genuinely lost at RB IMO. Maybe it’s all those years playing LB then RCB but he struggled at RB before in his career. 

A big concern of switching to a back 4 from a 5 was how Alonso, Luiz and Azpili would cope and you would have to say that Alonso and Luiz have adapted well but Azpili really is at sea at the moment. 

Harsh. He has looked below his usual high standards over the last two games. Hopefully just something temporary. 

 

8 hours ago, Martin1905 said:

Let's not make this about you and Droy arguing why Fabregas should be starting. I've said many times how much I rate the guy but today showed exactly why he's not getting in the team. 

How is Fabregas supposed to handle that level of intensity? It was the right move to not start him but surely he'd have been a better option than Barkley?

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3 hours ago, Blue_In_Every_Way said:

Yeah. The stats I saw during the game said the second half they had 65% of possession and had racked up 581 passes compared to our 521 passes during the game.

How many of those 581/521 passes were by midfielders?

I haven't seen any stats, until this, I was there and at no time do I think we were getting outpassed by their midfield,  even if they had more possession, which suprises me as I would have said it was very even overall.

You remember how this conversation started? Me saying our midfield was brilliant, you disagreeing and claiming they outpassed us? I don't think their midfield outpassed our midfield, our passing was on a different level, just look at the goal. 

 

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