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JaneB

Southampton 1 Chelsea 1

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Blue Rod   
8 minutes ago, Droy was my hero said:

Yes - it is easy to get as excited about a short run of games recently as some were in December.

But we are certainly on a firmer footing than before.

Well we really didn't.  We had massive possession, most of our players were deep in their half, but the ball rarely got beyond the h/w line.  It got passed about the back for 90 mins.

Bothimage.thumb.png.84b56f73cf15ba431a9227eccb6c5f28.png teams played most of the match in their own half.

If you give him 2 seconds to look up and play he is a threat.  But so is Kante and Zouma with that amount of time.  And no one will ever get that time unless you first put Silva and Jorginho in the team.

Well, that is an interesting heat map. it is what it is. 

But I really don't think that the Kante, Kova, Jorginho debate applies to this match. There will be matches where our midfield is seriously outplayed no matter which of the three players we field. Today wasn't even one of them. We could have gone a bit more gung-ho, but I thought we generated enough balls for our forward line to do the business.

Our forwards attacking players were completely ineffective - Alonso, James, Werner, CHO, Mount, Abraham - they just didn't function as a unit, from the first blow of the whistle to the end. Even when Ziyech came on, he did nothing. They could not find each other with the right ball. They might as well have been playing for 5 different teams. That is how we drew the match.

People seem to forget that we haven't really created many chances under TT no matter who plays as CM. Maybe my TV has been showing the wrong matches, but I just haven't seen all these chances that were created by Jorginho or Kovacic. But with a half-decent defending, we might have come away with a 1-0 win and a false sense of doing well. Maybe the draw is a wake-up call. 

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GURJ SS   
9 minutes ago, Blue Rod said:

We played with 2 wingbacks who had barely any defending to do until much later in the match. Then we had Werner, Mount, CHO/Abraham. That is 5 players in our attacking line--up. Southampton scored by stringing two passes together. I am not sure that you need 11 attackers to win a match. 

We didn't just stick one player upfront and go behind the ball. We played most of the match in Southampton's half. It's easy to say that  Jorginho would have won us the match. I am not sure on what basis. He has done okay since TT came, but has not really created anything remarkable. 

Our attacking is disorganised. I don't think another attacker in the line-up would have made much difference. CHO is the one player who has been creative since TT came. But even he did not look great today. 

 

But it wasn't 5 attacking players in our attack, it was 3, supported by 1 wingback and 1 defender. The personnel is extremely important and it showed in how Southampton setup, when Southampton scored they had 5 players moving forwards who pose a threat in 1v1 situations - James and Alonso do not do that so Southampton's defence wasn't stretched at all and didn't mind them having the ball.

I didn't mention Jorginho, but as you did. One of the things he does well is move the ball around so the opposition start coming out to meet the midfield which makes room in behind them, today it was great to see Kante not let Southampton come out but that just meant they didn't move out of position. Every action has a reaction, there was so much emphasis put on keeping Southampton back by pressing through the middle that the one time we needed to drop off a few yards we didn't, and they scored from it. Kante took Kova's moving role and wasn't as effective, Kova had to then do Jorginho's static role and wasn't as effective, it's about finding the balance not always about playing the fastest or most energetic of players. It's no coincidence that our tactics were wrong today when Jorginho wasn't playing, we were pressing from positions we haven't pressed from since Tuchel arrived. In past games we've plugged gaps in midfield by dropping off and pressed in wide areas, today we were pressing through the middle and it was only a matter of time before the middle got left open. We failed to drop off because the middle kept wanting to press and the backline had to go with them, that's how the backline also got caught out, because they were too busy trying to stay with the press. Every single defensive move of ours was a press, no variation, the midfield pressed and the back line went with them. That's what you get with Kante, press, press, press but no tactical thinking of what that means for those behind or around him. Then in the second half Minamino found a heap of room behind Kante, because the backline and Kova stopped pressing to give us more room to move the ball in, but Kante just carried on pressing every single time. Kante is an 8, not a 6. We'd have had a better chance of winning today if Jorge and Kova had played the 6 roles, and Kante with Mount had taken up 8 and 10 roles, with CHO out wide. Kante would have been able to press from a position where when he wins the ball there's less than 5 players in front of him, today he was pressing Southampton when they had 9 men behind the ball; to what end exactly? Apart from giving them more reason to just sit back and defend even more. There's more to the 6 role than creating direct goals, it's about knowing when to move the ball and in which direction, and when to stick and when to move, when to press and when to not. Tuchel is making a mistake of bringing players into the fold just to keep them happy, he needs to do what needs to be done to get us in the top 4, which he was until his vast amount of changes today. The key about creating is that the right players have to have the ball, Jorginho tries to find the correct players to be on the ball, Kante prefers to run with the ball, I know which one I prefer; and that's getting the ball to more dangerous players who can actually do something, Kante running 20 yards to give a 5 yard pass looks impressive but waste time and takes away possession from more dangerous players.

We start with a true winger outside and it would have made a huge difference, Tuchel moving CHO off the wing is killing our attack, James is a good player but nowhere near CHO in wide areas, and with Dave covering there's no need for James to play instead of CHO. If anything CHO hasn't looked great ever since he has been moved off the wide role, because every natural wide player relies on the ball coming to them early and on the inside it just doesn't happen. In past game when the ball fell to CHO outwide Alonso would double up in the box, now he can't move because James goes backwards or sideways. All about that balance tactically, and Tuchel maybe by mistake had found it early on, much like Lamps did when players were injured and he was forced to play a certain lineup; when players came back into the fold things started falling apart because the balance was no longer there. Let's hope Tuchel sees it.

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chara   

OK...not seen the game...far too early a start here...not the getting up but stuff that has to be done first thing!

Seeing the result I knew more or less what would be posted here..not a "go' at anyone...but as pointed out by a few the rest of the season isn't about top four etc etc but about a sorting out of what TT has to work with...forget the boring comments...boring and points at this stage is better than wonderful and no points!!!

If the same sort of offerings are apparent next ..say...early October then time to get on TT's case....be interesting to see what the Chelsea lineup will be for that mythical early October game I mentioned?....or rather who isn't in the line up and long gone from SB....

Will catch the game later and comment if warrented....

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Faramir   
Just now, thevelourfog said:

You're the one attaching pessimism to my words, not me. I just don't expect a drastic change in our form.

Again, if you think we are going to get drastically different results against better sides in upcoming games than we have so far this season, please say so.

Do you expect a drastic change in those other four teams (Leeds, Everton, Liverpool, United) form?

If not pessimism, then you have set a low bar for our potential to improve this season.

Again, I say to you, those four teams, and all the teams around us, are struggling just like us to get the needed results to claim a top 4 place.

I don't think we have to make "drastic" adjustments to compete with those "better sides".

If we have 'improved' performances when we play Everton and Leeds I expect us to win.

With Liverpool who knows? Which Liverpool will turn up on the day? Which Chelsea? There is a big argument to be made that they are worse off than us based on the last 4 weeks.

And United? They have lost a few point to us over the last five games going into this Weekend of fixtures. So we wont have to do anything "drastic" to compete with them. 

We just need to gradually make improvements this season, not hold back until next season.

There are many 'stories' of how a change of manager rescues a team from 'certain relegation' over the years in the Premier league. Why can't we, this season, make a few positive changes to improve our standing in the table and make top 4?

The reason I'm optimistic is because in this crazy season we are not the only ones having "issues". Out of the "top six" only City can be happy with their season so far.

All credit to the likes of Aston Villa, Everton and West Ham, they can be very happy with their successes so far this season, but I would call it pessimistic to think we can't get three points from them if we 'turn up' on the day.

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3 minutes ago, Blue Rod said:

But I really don't think that the Kante, Kova, Jorginho debate applies to this match. There will be matches where our midfield is seriously outplayed no matter which of the three players we field. Today wasn't even one of them. We could have gone a bit more gung-ho, but I thought we generated enough balls for our forward line to do the business.

 

What we have now is a much clearer style.  The preferred way to attack is through medium length balls from deep CMs or CBs to the No 10s.  With the alternative choice (where defences narrow to crowd our No 10s) being long wide balls to the WBs.  

But that requires quality passing to Mount, Werner (or whoever).  The only player we have in back 3 or CM who can do that quickly is Jorginho.  Others can do it if given 2 seconds but it is pretty easy to neutralise that with a medium press (like today).
And if the medium (I guess it is called vertical by some) passing is not working then opponents have scope to mark the WBs too.

Jorginho provides the right quality passing, and if a medium press concentrates on him then there is plenty of time and opportunity for his colleagues.  

 

9 minutes ago, Blue Rod said:

People seem to forget that we haven't really created many chances under TT no matter who plays as CM.

Very true - not many chances, and the real improvement has come from conceding just 2 goals.  

 

10 minutes ago, Blue Rod said:

Maybe my TV has been showing the wrong matches, but I just haven't seen all these chances that were created by Jorginho or Kovacic.

No of course not.  Because the chances we have created have come from balls that went to the No 10s and then went several passes further before the goal.  We have seen some games where Mount has received and turned on the oppo in their half a dozen times.  I don't recall him doing it once today.  And we have seen the vertical ball become such a threat that CHO and Alonso became free men.

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Blue Rod   
3 minutes ago, GURJ SS said:

But it wasn't 5 attacking players in our attack, it was 3, supported by 1 wingback and 1 defender. The personnel is extremely important and it showed in how Southampton setup, when Southampton scored they had 5 players moving forwards who pose a threat in 1v1 situations - James and Alonso do not do that so Southampton's defence wasn't stretched at all and didn't mind them having the ball.

I didn't mention Jorginho, but as you did. One of the things he does well is move the ball around so the opposition start coming out to meet the midfield which makes room in behind them, today it was great to see Kante not let Southampton come out but that just meant they didn't move out of position. Every action has a reaction, there was so much emphasis put on keeping Southampton back by pressing through the middle that the one time we needed to drop off a few yards we didn't, and they scored from it. Kante took Kova's moving role and wasn't as effective, Kova had to then do Jorginho's static role and wasn't as effective, it's about finding the balance not always about playing the fastest or most energetic of players. It's no coincidence that our tactics were wrong today when Jorginho wasn't playing, we were pressing from positions we haven't pressed from since Tuchel arrived. In past games we've plugged gaps in midfield by dropping off and pressed in wide areas, today we were pressing through the middle and it was only a matter of time before the middle got left open. We failed to drop off because the middle kept wanting to press and the backline had to go with them, that's how the backline also got caught out, because they were too busy trying to stay with the press. Every single defensive move of ours was a press, no variation, the midfield pressed and the back line went with them. That's what you get with Kante, press, press, press but no tactical thinking of what that means for those behind or around him. Then in the second half Minamino found a heap of room behind Kante, because the backline and Kova stopped pressing to give us more room to move the ball in, but Kante just carried on pressing every single time. Kante is an 8, not a 6. We'd have had a better chance of winning today if Jorge and Kova had played the 6 roles, and Kante with Mount had taken up 8 and 10 roles, with CHO out wide. Kante would have been able to press from a position where when he wins the ball there's less than 5 players in front of him, today he was pressing Southampton when they had 9 men behind the ball; to what end exactly? Apart from giving them more reason to just sit back and defend even more. There's more to the 6 role than creating direct goals, it's about knowing when to move the ball and in which direction, and when to stick and when to move, when to press and when to not. Tuchel is making a mistake of bringing players into the fold just to keep them happy, he needs to do what needs to be done to get us in the top 4, which he was until his vast amount of changes today. The key about creating is that the right players have to have the ball, Jorginho tries to find the correct players to be on the ball, Kante prefers to run with the ball, I know which one I prefer; and that's getting the ball to more dangerous players who can actually do something, Kante running 20 yards to give a 5 yard pass looks impressive but waste time and takes away possession from more dangerous players.

We start with a true winger outside and it would have made a huge difference, Tuchel moving CHO off the wing is killing our attack, James is a good player but nowhere near CHO in wide areas, and with Dave covering there's no need for James to play instead of CHO. If anything CHO hasn't looked great ever since he has been moved off the wide role, because every natural wide player relies on the ball coming to them early and on the inside it just doesn't happen. In past game when the ball fell to CHO outwide Alonso would double up in the box, now he can't move because James goes backwards or sideways. All about that balance tactically, and Tuchel maybe by mistake had found it early on, much like Lamps did when players were injured and he was forced to play a certain lineup; when players came back into the fold things started falling apart because the balance was no longer there. Let's hope Tuchel sees it.

I concede that Kante is not a good passer of the ball, and Kovacic may also lack some of the passing ability of Jorginho. But I must also say that I must be missing a lot of things about Jorginho. He must have had a role in one goal since TT came, maybe two, but I can't think of more.  He hit a lot of passes in the season under Sarri. But these were recycling passes. Because despite his high passing stats under Sarri, his goal assists stats were pretty low. This season his offensive passing is not that brilliant. In fact, he is as likely to pass it sideways and backwards as Kante and Kovacic. Don't get me wrong; Jorginho is a capable midfielder. But I think we may just be creating a myth here that we can roll out each time we play poorly without him. 

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14 minutes ago, Faramir said:

Do you expect a drastic change in those other four teams (Leeds, Everton, Liverpool, United) form?

No. That is my exact point. I expect them* to be up and down. I expect them to be poor one week and great the next, irrespective of who they play. I think they will continue being that way until game 38.

I think we tend to beat, or at least not lose to, the lesser sides and get nothing out of anyone decent. I think it's going to take much more work than can be realistically done in this season to change that.

I expect both sets of form, Everton's/United's/Liverpool's and ours, to be more or less the same up until the final day of the season. 

My reading of comments here, yours included, is that some other people expect both sets to change; ours to be better and our competitors to go from "erratic" to consistently losing. That seems very unlikely to me. How often do sets of form entrenched for 25ish games suddenly change?

I don't look at us and see a side playing as if they think taking risks to win is necessary. Again, if you see differently, that's fine. But say so.

 

*Not Leeds, who I just included because I think Elland Road will be a hard place to go after those games and before the 2nd Atletico tie. They are obviously a different beast to Liverpool, United and Everton.

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DannyLB   
50 minutes ago, Faramir said:

Maybe he wants to send a message tailored specifically to CHO.

The key for it to pay-off is if he speaks to him 'one-on-one' and tells him that he has the potential to be a top player and he needs to hit a high standard consistently. He also has to have that conversation now.

I hope the two of them already have a positive relationship otherwise this approach can 'back fire'.

Just a hunch but I believe he has already had this conversation with him. 

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Faramir   
15 minutes ago, DannyLB said:

Just a hunch but I believe he has already had this conversation with him. 

I sincerely hope so.

Also, he needs to start CHO as right wing-back against Atletico.

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50 minutes ago, Droy was my hero said:

Very true - not many chances, and the real improvement has come from conceding just 2 goals.  

Oh well, that TT gone in the summer. NEXT

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