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Michael Tucker

AFC Bournemouth 2 Chelsea 2

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Holymoly   

All this navel gazing regarding defense is a bit pointless. Lampard is doing the best with what he's got for the rest of the season. The variety of suggestions by posters here would suggest that there is no overwhelming individual so it is a question of finding the best blend for a particular opponent. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn't. I would argue however that the main reason for the disappointing results we've seen is not as a result of the defense but rather that the attack doesn't score enough goals based on the possession/chances we have. When you are (at best) defending a one goal advantage stuff is always eventually going to happen. At the start of the season when we were winning a string of games we were scoring goals and the other team weren't being let off the hook.

We have got a terrific batch of young players and what we need to add to them are players who are big upgrades they can aspire to emulate. What we don't want/need is another group of foreigners that no-one has heard of that are only as good as what we already have.

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43 minutes ago, chelboy said:

Any team that can string 6 wins will get top 4. It’s not impossible for them and they have a quality goal scorer. 

Not when you have Luiz, mustafi and the Greek at CB

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2 hours ago, chelboy said:

Any team that can string 6 wins will get top 4. It’s not impossible for them and they have a quality goal scorer. 

No chance. They went about 2 months without a win, only being saved from a relegation battle thanks to getting away with draws in games they deserved to lose. 

I'm not convinced they have turned a corner at all. Getting dumped out of Europe by a Greek team is their biggest humiliation since they dropped to Europa. In previous seasons it was us and Atletico that knocked them out, so at least they had a valid excuse. 

In reality we should be out of sight in this race, nearer to or even ahead of Leicester. The Xg stat (which has City top and us comfortably 3rd) shows that our lack of clinical goalscorers is our downfall. We are creating way more than those below us and Leicester. We just aren't finishing. 

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Blue Rod   
4 hours ago, Mark Kelly said:

Surely , if we play James and Alonso as wing backs then that's five in defence , we learnt that a couple of years ago when despite actually winning the league and FA Cup it was used as a stick to beat Conte with .

He took half a dozen games before he realised we needed to play 3-4-3 to get the best out of players , it's taken Lamps and Morris two thirds of a season .

Meanwhile , the board still didn't help the manager , sorry coach .

funny old game .

The Conte tweak involved a lot of hard running, which was fine so long as the players were happy to commit. I think far from the system completely breaking down, it was players fatigue or them wishing to go back to their old ways that was the main problem. The other problem was the abrasive nature and Southern Italian temperament of Conte.

Right now we could do with improving the basics, for a start. Lower league teams, PL minnows, PL top teams, German league team - they are have all outran, outlasted us. I dont think there is a formation that doesn't require pace and stamina

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1 hour ago, Blue Rod said:

The Conte tweak involved a lot of hard running, which was fine so long as the players were happy to commit. I think far from the system completely breaking down, it was players fatigue or them wishing to go back to their old ways that was the main problem. The other problem was the abrasive nature and Southern Italian temperament of Conte.

Right now we could do with improving the basics, for a start. Lower league teams, PL minnows, PL top teams, German league team - they are have all outran, outlasted us. I dont think there is a formation that doesn't require pace and stamina

I hear what you are saying and I have been saying for months that we keep getting overrun. Initially I got short sharp shrift for making that observation.

However, the problem is the make up of the squad. How exactly are you going to put a first XI out that is capable of keeping up? Kante and Mount are virtually the only AM/CM that are capable of doing it and Kante has been injured for most of the season. 

Edited by King Kante

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53 minutes ago, King Kante said:

I hear what you are saying and I have been saying for months that we keep getting overrun. Initially I got short sharp shrift for making that observation.

Really?  I thought everyone agreed on that.  Arsenal, famous for not lasting 60 mins,  overran us at the end.  It was clear in the first few weeks of the season.

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Blue Rod   
1 hour ago, King Kante said:

I hear what you are saying and I have been saying for months that we keep getting overrun. Initially I got short sharp shrift for making that observation.

However, the problem is the make up of the squad. How exactly are you going to put a first XI out that is capable of keeping up? Kante and Mount are virtually the only AM/CM that are capable of doing it and Kante has been injured for most of the season. 

The squad make up is an issue. But last year we had an older squad, and Kante quite literally ran himself to the ground and has not fully recovered since. This year we should have more pace and stamina with a much younger squad, but it seems even worse.

It's a classic  chicken and egg; either we are passing sideways and backwards because we can't run, or we can't and don't have to run because we pass backwards and sideways. I seem to think that each time we play more direct football we have looked more threatening. But even then once we"ve scored a goal, normal service seems to resume. 

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2 hours ago, Blue Rod said:

The squad make up is an issue. But last year we had an older squad, and Kante quite literally ran himself to the ground and has not fully recovered since. This year we should have more pace and stamina with a much younger squad, but it seems even worse.

It's a classic  chicken and egg; either we are passing sideways and backwards because we can't run, or we can't and don't have to run because we pass backwards and sideways. I seem to think that each time we play more direct football we have looked more threatening. But even then once we"ve scored a goal, normal service seems to resume. 

The squad was older but it had both Hazard and Luiz in it who are being missed. Hazard importance doesn't need to be stated but Luiz's importance when playing a 3atb is a big loss as he would demand the ball and get us playing. Further, with the way the CB's are playing I am also pretty sure Luiz would have played ahead of pretty much all of them in a four, even with his faults. 

As for our lack of keeping things up once we have scored (or to continue if we haven't scored after 60 mins) that for me is just a mixture of naivety and the lack of athleticism in the squad. 

Edited by King Kante

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Jasonb   
11 hours ago, Blue Rod said:

The squad make up is an issue. But last year we had an older squad, and Kante quite literally ran himself to the ground and has not fully recovered since. This year we should have more pace and stamina with a much younger squad, but it seems even worse.

It's a classic  chicken and egg; either we are passing sideways and backwards because we can't run, or we can't and don't have to run because we pass backwards and sideways. I seem to think that each time we play more direct football we have looked more threatening. But even then once we"ve scored a goal, normal service seems to resume. 

I think we are trying to break teams down systematically and failing and it is then we go direct which is risky as given our defensive situation we are just as likely to concede as score ourselves.

I've noticed some specific attacking plays over the last 3 managers, with Conte, Azpi's deep cross would find Morata for a goal and with Sarri, Luiz's long ball would find Pedro who would score.

Early in this season we were playing through the middle with Tammy holding the ball and offloading to get us into attacking positions, that like the previous moves under Conte and Sarri has been identified by the opposition. So we worked on our offensive corners and more recently a couple of James's crosses  reach Giroud and his aerial strength creates knocks downs for our attackers or LWB to score.

9 hours ago, King Kante said:

As for our lack of keeping things up once we have scored (or to continue if we haven't scored after 60 mins) that for me is just a mixture of naivety and the lack of athleticism in the squad. 

I don't think the 60 minute without goals is a lack of athleticism rather that some teams come just to sit deep with numbers and counter attack. 

Previously we were using CHO and Willian to cross and Tammy's aerial ability was poor. Our interplay around the edge of the box was too slow and without the necessary movement of other players to create openings we were effectively stifled.

With Giroud with his aerial prowess we will have a better chance offensively as he wins a fair amount of balls in the air and this will likely work even against packed defences.

Had Pulisic remained fit our interplay around the edges of the penalty area might have improved, another factor is if RLC ever recovers he give us a different threat running through the middle and drawing freekicks in dangerous areas.

 

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Blue Rod   
4 hours ago, Jasonb said:

I think we are trying to break teams down systematically and failing and it is then we go direct which is risky as given our defensive situation we are just as likely to concede as score ourselves.

I've noticed some specific attacking plays over the last 3 managers, with Conte, Azpi's deep cross would find Morata for a goal and with Sarri, Luiz's long ball would find Pedro who would score.

Early in this season we were playing through the middle with Tammy holding the ball and offloading to get us into attacking positions, that like the previous moves under Conte and Sarri has been identified by the opposition. So we worked on our offensive corners and more recently a couple of James's crosses  reach Giroud and his aerial strength creates knocks downs for our attackers or LWB to score.

I don't think the 60 minute without goals is a lack of athleticism rather that some teams come just to sit deep with numbers and counter attack. 

Previously we were using CHO and Willian to cross and Tammy's aerial ability was poor. Our interplay around the edge of the box was too slow and without the necessary movement of other players to create openings we were effectively stifled.

With Giroud with his aerial prowess we will have a better chance offensively as he wins a fair amount of balls in the air and this will likely work even against packed defences.

Had Pulisic remained fit our interplay around the edges of the penalty area might have improved, another factor is if RLC ever recovers he give us a different threat running through the middle and drawing freekicks in dangerous areas.

 

Well, if you dont have the confidence to go on a full offensive, then your counterattack must have a bite. If it's neither of the above, what really are you playing at? Conte was not ashamed to use counterattacks in his first season. And when we did counter, it was fast and furious. 

You can be direct without going long, though. You just make sure your first, second, and third passes after you've won the ball ( that we talked about) are offensive. If the ball comes back, you go on the offensive again. The team has to make that switch, mentally and physically. Instead we are taking a deep breath after we've won the ball, pinging it back and forth and watching the opponents regroup. 

 

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