Casting my mind back to the FA Cup Final mauling against Arsenal on May 30th and I distinctly remember Sherwood promising to give Villa a different dimension in the future. Tabling an alternate offering in order for the famous claret and blue to be competitive once more.

A refreshing thought, huh’?

Fast forward three months and I’m afraid to say that as far as I can see shape wise that we’re none-the-wiser. Against the Mackens on Saturday we looked like we had progressed in very few departments. The way we set up last season with Benteke as the focal point as a lone forward with three attacking players behind him is no different than the Gestede approach.

It has been far too easy for sides to line-up against the Villa and suss us out in recent times; the counter attacking football of Lambert which became plainly futile and draining on the eye and what with the personnel we’ve brought in over the past few years a 4-2-3-1 variation has been the obvious and most natural formation to play.

Whether we like it or not the sheer height and physique of Rudy Gestede makes him a target man – the most orthodox of its kind. And just in case the opposition defenders hadn’t noticed the French-Benin’s presence the screams of “Ruuudy” from the faithful at every set piece sort of gives it away. It’s then up to the three playing in-and-around to get close to him and make things happen in tangent. Similar to what we did when Benteke plied his trade in B6. It is a bit obvious, don’t you think?

It ought to be noted that we have struggled with injuries somewhat. Sherwood has yet been able to start his first XI together as one. What with Veretout struggling in the early part of his time with us and purchasing the wrong Ayew brother; it’s only now that Carlos Sanchez has had a the kick up the backside that he desperately needed and with Scott Sinclair’s scoring form of late you simply cannot leave him out either.

For as much as I was hugely impressed with the central midfield trio of Sanchez, Westwood and Gueye versus Sunderland. The Colombian holding and spreading it about from the back whilst the other two were given licence to roam. This system only seeks to shoot ourselves in the foot because if the foursome of Grealish, Gil, Traore and Sinclair are readily available and fit to play. I’d want them all in the side. Meaning at least one of the square central midfielders would be forced to make way.

I’d like to see Sherwood be bold for a change. Perhaps at home to one of the bigger sides – in a ‘we’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain’ sort of encounter – be daring and put out a 3-4-3.

I’ve nothing set in stone here and so I’m writing on a whim and with a full compliment to choose from. Richards, Clark and Okore across the back. Amavi on the left side of midfield with Grealish on the right in this instance – both expected to play their part defensively too when out of possession and with the prospective opposition on top. In the middle of the park Gueye ‘The Engine’ and Carles Gil ‘The Creator’ and then a front three of Sinclair, Gestede and Traore in order to not only give us a target man/outlet but with the other two in close attendance with pace to burn it has the potential to cause havoc.

Whether you, the reader, agree with this imaginable selection or not doesn’t bother me too much. My main argument is that should we wish to progress then we really do need to start pushing our boundaries and trying alternate systems and methods by putting it into practice on the training ground and giving it a go one Saturday afternoon rather than playing it safe week-after-week. I mean it’s hardly like we’re taking the league by storm, is it?

Does Sherwood have the bottle?

He who dares, Rodney.

Until my next outing: Up The Villa!

Comments 84

  1. Its interesting Ryan, I think Sherwood has bought in like for like players… Richards and Vlaar are simila, Delph and Gana similar and Gestede and Benteke. At the moment I see only two of these as potential improvements.

    What Sherwood has done in improve the squad options. Which gives him more of a chance to change a game using the bench.

    I too have been thinking that a 3 at the back may suit us, especially now we’re on the verge of signing Lescott. But then again I think Lescott and Richards has the making of a very good paring at the back. Clark has started off slowly this season and feel Lescott will come straight in.

    Richards has looks good in the middle. but feel its only a matter of time before the Bacuna/Hutton experiments at RB are put to bed and Richards is asked to fill at gap. Which would be a shame for the player because he’s got real chance of getting his England place back if he stays at CB for Villa.

    352 I think would be interesting.

    ————– Richards Lescott Clark ————–
    Gil ——– Gana ——— Sanchez ——- Amavi
    ——————– Grealish —————————
    ——– Gestede ————– Sinclair ————-

    Sinclair to me after watching him is a striker… its not just his finishing, its his movement around the box. On the ball he isn’t the greatest, his running off the ball tho is very good, finds space, times his runs well and is always on the turn. I’d play him right up the top.

    Although…

    Richards Okore Lescott Amavi
    ———–Gana Sanchez
    Gil ——- Grealish ——- Sinclair
    ———– Gestede

    Doesn’t look too shoddy…. Certainly some muscle and pace at the back.

    Just hope Grealish can add a few goals to his game soon.

  2. spot on, what we have now is options and when everyone fit strength in depth.

    Lescott for me is a great signing, local lad and villa fan same as richards, and both great friends.

    If we aint signing a rb then i would like richards to play there with okore at cb next to lescott.

    Clarke, like guzan just cant be trusted and come across as loosers mentality to me. Happy to have as a squad player but you dont want to be having him as no 1 cb.

  3. HI Ryan thank you for the post.

    I’m in the give it time camp, Grealish is our talisman this season and for part of last in my opinion. There simply isn’t anyone like him in this league, would be nice if he added goals but if he creates 3-4 good chances every game its not the worst is it. Gil is yet to come alive on the scoring front too and we have the incredible Adama . Those three on the pitch against county plus Sinclair scored 6, yes it was only county but how many times have we fallen to none league opposition with virtually our full side out in past seasons?

    I take your point that things at the moment look similar (with no grealish,gil,adama and now thankfully no Gabby). Lets have a look at that and TS’s like for like policy.

    Richards while lacking vlaars experience at CB is a real leader and is a huge asset. If Lescott joins so much the better.

    Gueye is a better all round midfielder than Delph without the unpredictable runs.

    Gestede is not Benteke but given the service Benteke was given last season he will score, given very little as he has been so far he won’t, he’s not going to create his own chances often as Tekkers did occasionally but hopefully he will put away the majority of headers that quite frankly tekkers never got near for a big fella. Add the terrific trio to the side and things open up because defenders will have much more than Gestede to deal with.

    Now waiting in the background we have Vertoute, I have the feeling this lad could be a real dark horse for us the only problem is who to drop? add Gardner to this category, this lads story hasn’t ended yet.

    Amavi massive upgrade on Luna/richardson/clark/baker/the tea lady etc, we have a left back, yay. Small word on Bennett, he’s grown up.

    Sinclair is fast regaining his form, against county he picked the ball up in our half and dribbled through the midfield quite a few times, add this to the time machine he uses to appear at the right moment to score and we have another upgrade to gabby/weimann. Remember he hardly featured after a slight injury under TS.

    I also think formations have been tailored to the available players fitness, also allowing the team to gel while not taking a hiding. We have presented a conservative approach and while we have conceded a few its been mostly bad luck and the odd c**k up rather than an overall system fail as in recent times. With Grealish and Gil together we have much more ability to keep the ball around the oppositions box and apply pressure without them we struggle to create as much. they will add a much needed change.

    I’m open to 3 at the back because quite frankly I’m struggling to get all the players I like in the team.

  4. I fully believe that when Okore gets completely healthy he’ll replace Clark.

    Graham:
    I like your 3412. I’d have Okore instead of Clark on the left of the back three; Traore as right winger instead of Gil; Berbatov (if we sign him) insead of Gestede.

  5. agree Ryan – especially agree about not playing 3. defensive mids together — would love to see two of the with either gil – sinclar or glealish becoming attacking centre mid – we could then play two wide men and a striker and i am sure we would create a heck of a lot more than we do at the minite.

    deadline day and no frem is a bit wierd
    lescott will do a job for us – berba looks like it may happen even though ade would be better as he is a lot more mobile and scores more goals

    but bringing in some experience is vital at this stage imo

  6. Ryan, you say “I distinctly remember Sherwood promising to give Villa a different dimension in the future. … Fast forward three months and I’m afraid to say that as far as I can see shape wise that we’re none-the-wiser. ”

    The thing is that TS didn’t give any timescale to his plan, so we must assume, I think, that we’re very much going through a W.I.P. situation. And we’re only 4 games into the new era.

    He could only sign according to the money available and went for value-for-money. I believe he was not at all satisfied to the overall balance of the squad and had to go for several players. In this acquisition round I’d suggest that although Lambert struck lucky with Benteke, TS has done rather better so far … Richards, Gana, Traore and even Amavi (despite his give aways πŸ˜‰ look really solid acquisitions. And it’s TS, of course, who has pushed Grealish forward.

    Let’s sit back and watch it all unfold! πŸ™‚

  7. As mentioned above and similar to my response on the previous thread, while it may be a case of similar formations, it’s the sum of its components that make use stronger than previous seasons.

    Keeper
    Guzan, Bunn – key position and a crying shame Begovic looked for pounds instead of playing, he would have solidified us with Guzan as back up.
    RB
    We know Huttons limitations, Hutton knows his limitations but as a defender he’s fairly solid, there has been no change to this position so we have the same problems as previous seasons, support from Bacuna but clearly not an RB but maybe the system doesn’t suit him further forward either
    LB
    Amavi as stated above, massive improvement on every previous option, we do need cover, could it be Clark?
    CB
    How many times did we see Vlaar be the crucial person to make a mistake at the wrong time and cost us points, he’s also crocked, we’ve a younger/fitter replacement in Richards, already captain and leading the defensive line. We (I) cringed at Baker/Clarke partnerships now we’ll have Richards/Lescott and support in Okore/Clarke
    DM
    No change Sanchez or Westwood but who’s available that would improve us, not high on list of priority positions
    AM
    Too many to list in terms of arrivals but we had two headless chickens in Cleverly and Delph in there last season who got just a handful of goals. We’ve so many new players it’s taking time to gel this part of the field as it links to the strikers, hence the frustration amongst some of us.
    Wingers
    Gil, Grealish (more a number 10) Adama replacing the ineffectual Zog, big improvement as Gil and Grealish will get more game time and Adama is our new beast.
    Strikers
    Gestede, Sinclair, Ayew, Gabby – Sinclair’s movement upfront has given him a new lease of life and now places him in a support role for the winger. Gestede is the focal point and probably can’t handle 2/3 prem class defenders around him but with a bit more calmness could release some of the balls up to him to put others through. Ayew it would be a shame if he didn’t make it but nothing is falling for him, needs a goal off his arse to get going.

    I’ve not called out every player but look at the strength in depth, the competition for places and the improved technical proficiency of the players we now have, how this will help the academy players and them coming through will be benefitting us for years nevermind the 2015/16 season.

    Villa’s two key words for the next few months patience and gel, learn to repeat these after every draw/defeat and when dealing with the rest of the sheep that support other teams. We’ll come good.

    UTV

  8. I am calming down on the results now. It’s early days and as long as we are out of the bottom 6 im goig to relax and watch and see where the chips fall.

    You have to remeber the absoloute dire negative footy no goals etc under lambert.

    Linked to Iblori….pool defender. Cb i think ?! Weird one

  9. Well said DOR except we have 5 players who have played DM
    Vertoute gueye westwood gardner sanchez some more flexible in position they can play than others another bonus πŸ™‚

  10. Interesting thoughts, Ryan.

    I have to agree with those counseling patience…Job One is being difficult to beat, and part of that is getting a fundamental system/awareness in place. The balance has to be struck where Sherwood can say, “Right, here’s the side toughest to break down and play most like Chelsea, get the 1-0 wins or 0-0, 1-1 draws if a win isn’t on the cards.” Then there are the variations when looking for goals and a more expansive style of play.

    I think the side can be dynamic as it is set up. As you say, if Westwood makes way for a more attacking player, things can change quite a bit.

    What’s refreshing is knowing that there are options and that a “best” side might be situational as opposed to having no other resort.

  11. I thought sendeross organising the defence last season got the best out of Guzan? Maybe lescott can do the same he is vastly experianced and not aa decreped

  12. We need to stop giving away silly goals, and shore up the back line.

    I see plenty of options and much more creativity going forwards (though we are obviously far from the finished article here) but we are giving away goals.

    We need organisation and calm heads. A captain who barks out the orders and gets the team to retain possession. Not sure we have one do we?

  13. Apperently we have signed an 18yr old keeper from the dutch lge

    I have to say well done to TS who for me is showing how you juggle and build the best side you can while working for an owner who doesnt really support the managers – i think he has done brilliant under the curcumstances

    possibly townsend on loan too – hopefully with a view to buy

  14. Darren:
    “Villa’s two key words for the next few months patience and gel, learn to repeat these after every draw/defeat and when dealing with the rest of the sheep that support other teams. We’ll come good.”

    ABSOLUTELY, my friend, absolutely!!

  15. Andrew:
    “Must be something majorly wrong with austin to not be moving.”

    I’ve been thinking the same thing! I mean, no one has really made a strong play for him … very puzzling, indeed.

  16. I wouldnt go 3 at the back. Not a fan at all.

    4231 all day for me.

    Guzan
    Richards Okore Lescott Amavi
    Sanchez Gana
    Adama Grealish Sinclair
    Adebuyor
    How strong would the bench be! Clarke, bacuna, westy, vertout gestede, ayew Gill!!!

    Its a very quick, mobile strong team too.

  17. If the loanee from ‘Poo does come in we’ll have signed two CB’s at the window’s end. Even with the loaning out of Baker we will still have a plethora of CB’s from which to choose.

    The signing of these two new CB’s makes me wonder if this is a signal that Micah Richard has quietly agreed to start spending significant time at right back. If so, this would solve another mystery from our summer window: why, to the best of my knowledge, we were never linked with — or even rumored to be linked with — a legitimate right back import.

  18. Strange one bringing in another CB, there seems a lack of balance in the squad, we are overloaded in some positions and lacking in others.
    It’s great we have an eye on the future bringing in young players, however it’s the hear and now, as going forwards we need to see real progression to attract bigger sponsors, better players etc and simply have to avoid relegation. I’m not as impressed with the business we have done as some, too many gambles, we lack a real goalscorer and a goalkeeper that spreads confidence rather than panic across the back 4.
    But this is what we have going forwards, I just hope it’s enough and there are 3 worse teams again this year, I’m not sure how many games we will win without a real goalscorer.

  19. Interesting article Ryan. I was thinking about 3 at the back just before we played Utd, found a video of the game where we last beat them at home 3-1 in 95. 3 at the back was Littles preferred formation with Ehiogu – McGrath – Southgate and Wright – Charles as wingbacks. It was more like a 3511 with Draper – Townsend – Tayls all sitting bug with license to break and Yorke free roaming behind Savo. It worked so well for us that year, a lot of the teams were surprised as everyond pretty much played a 442. It could work for us this year, but I see it more of a 3412.

    We have 3 good senior CB’s with a youngster with huge potential in reserve. Two great wingbacks Amavi and Bacuna (still rate him), a variety of combinations for the 2 in midfield Gana/Westwood/Sanchez/Veretout/Gardner, a couple great 10’s in Grealish and Gil and good potential striker combinations. It could work, the only thing is finding a way to get Traore in there so you could revert to a 343 but then you lose the 10. It is an interesting concept.

    Personally, Im more inclined to the 4231 as I feel its the best way to get most of our better players on the pitch. I love the versatility in the squad to play a variety of formations, I dont think we are good enough to say this is how we line up, can you beat us? We need to be more clever tactically. We can line up to play a 4312 diamond, a 4321 two 10’s, a standard 433 or even a bog standard 442 pretty well. At the end of the day its more about being better than your opponents than formations, finding the right combinations and gelling, but formations do help esp when you’re outnumbered in certain areas.

  20. Interesting to see how Bennett fairs at Bournemouth, good footballing side
    in the prem, lets hope he’s up to it and he come’s back a ready made replacement for Amavi when we sell him for Β£35mil next summer πŸ˜‰

  21. On Lescott, I reckon we made the signing 1 yr too late. I rate Lescott, just a bit concerned it might make our defense weaker overall as he would replace our best CB last year, given the fact Richards was made captain. Still unsure of Richards defensive intelligence. On the other hand competition for places can only be good and will keep people on their toes.

    At least we know we wont be short of CB’s this year… We’ve bought in the kid from Liverpool who I havent heard a thing about. Watched a couple vids, seems composed and a decent ball player. But you wonder why he aint anywhere near Liverpool’s first team when Lovren is making mistake after mistake. Will he get playing time? Surely he is 5th choice when Okore comes back? Seems a bit strange that one.

  22. Ree:
    I really enjoyed your tactical squad lineup summary!

    “the only thing is finding a way to get Traore in there so you could revert to a 343 but then you lose the 10.”

    See, if you upgrade the right wingback position from Bacuna to Adama, problem solved! πŸ˜‰

  23. This lloris lad seems very good. Is lighting quick…..beat ronaldo over 60m when together at sporting.

    I think he will be rb. Richards wont go rb now lescott is next to him at cb.

    Massive worry over goals. Gestede, ayew, kozac and sinclar now must get goals.

  24. I think Lescott will play or he wouldn’t of come and anyhow by the end of 3 local derbies Clark will be banned. don’t know a thing about the other lad but I reckon we will still get another loan player in. The other alternative is promote a young lad like sellars. With all these big contracts I think we will see some sold next summer.

  25. Thought we would see more outs. Cole, nzog, richardson, senderous have no future here. Hard to shift.

    New lad is rapid, maybe a foil next to lescott who is slower with micah rb?

    Still could get berba!

  26. Good work Texas, ill promote you to tactical coach #2 πŸ™‚

    Traore is decent defensively, he has the the build and is strong enough to shoulder barge people out the way! But i prefer him concentrating on attacking rather than worrying aboyt defending.

    Andrew – really interesting about Llori being faster than Ronaldo, but were they there the same time? Ronaldo left when he was 18, he’s 30 now so thats 12 yrs ago. Llori is 22 so that would make him 10 at the time?!?!

    From the vids he seems like a ball playing CB which is a niche we dont have. Sherwood saying that hes known about him a long time and tracked his career so thats a good thing. Just strange to me he didnt get a chance at Liverpool when they have obvious deficiencies in defense. And Rodgers aint afraid of playing youth as playing Gomez shows (albeit outta position).

  27. Pleased with Lescott. Good all round Defender, better than Clark and Baker anyway. Can score a few goals and I think him and Richards are really good mates.

    The guy from liverpool, no idea about him. Not sure why we signed another centre back with Okore, Richards, Clark and now Lescott. He won’t get much playing time but Pool fans aren’t to happy that he’s gone

    Why we didn’t we sign a striker though? We all know Gabby is a shambles. Ayew has looked lost, didn’t even get of the bench in our last two prem games. Kosak is very limited player and Rudy hasn’t had good reviews so far.

    Berba and Ady want money but they are so much better than anything we have

    We won’t score many goals and we can’t defend so it’s worrying

  28. Oh and we better not see 5 at the back when we have players like Gil Grealish and Adama

    Horrible formation. Sherwood needs to be more expressive like we were last season

  29. I say the cb situe is down to poor injury records. Think about it clarke baker and okore have had time out injured. Baker has been sent to bristol to prove himself and his fitness. We have to stop thinking of players as permanent fixtures especially if they are injury prone

  30. Wonder if TS is going to experiment with lloris at RB even though he seems to have mostly played at CB. With his pace and Amavi on the left, we could really move the ball quickly down the wings.

  31. Ree thats true about the ronaldo age gap! Ill investigate the story. Maybe it was when with the Portugesse set up?! Anyways meant to be quick!

    His signing will mean richards or him to play rb….Ilori meant to be versatile and has played rb before.

  32. If Ilori becomes the Amavi-class RB we supporters have been asking for, or if the signing of him and Lescott allows Richards to become the new RB, then the only major hole we missed out in filling is at striker.

    There was never going to be a major new “immediate replacement” goalkeeper signing, as Tim had clearly stated at the beginning of transfer season (although they did sign a very promising one for the future). The coaching staff’s job is to get Guzan back to playing at the level he did two years ago, when he was a top-5 keeper in the Premier League. If he was at that level once, he can get there again.

  33. Id stake money on richards staying at CB unless all the other options are dead. Its a promise ts made as he did with gueye in allowing him to attack when hes clearly a very good DM. Otherwise i dont think theyd be here

  34. I do think Richards stays at CB as well. Clearly, with Lescott, Crespo, Richards, Amavi, Ilori…TS felt we could be a lot better and deeper at the back.

    And who could really argue? Baker and Okore have spent huge chunks of time injured, Sendeross too (and he’s not the future of anything). If we can stop giving away all the stupid goals we concede, we ought to pick up a few more points and make teams beat us instead of gifting them wins and draws.

  35. Andrew – that sounds more like it, dunno what 10 yr old would best Ronaldo in a foot race! Sounds like a pace demon and I also agree that RB is his most likely position right now.

    Heres a lineup:

    Bunn
    Llori – Richards – Lescott – Amavi
    Gana – Veretout
    Traore – Ayew – Sinclair
    Gestede

    All signed this summer! Not even mentioning Crespo or Sarkic

    Not saying this is how we’ll lineup, just crazy how a whole new team has come in.

  36. Ree

    something had to change as our squad has been nothing short of a joke in the house that lambert built

    again i think tim has worked wonders considering he has had to sell to buy barring about 6mil

    i saw Ayew’s goal – great strike – hope he along with the others find there feet quickly and show there talent in the prem over the coming weeks

    vitd

  37. Thats just a summer signings lineup Andrew, not suggesting we should lineup like that.

    Although it doesnt look half bad by itself. Def scope for Grealish, Gil, Clark, Sanchez, Westwood, Bacuna and Guzan to play.

  38. Runtings I want Ayew to play more. Not sure if he can be a good main 9 in the PL as opposed to a second striker. But onky one way to find out. For me he has much more potential than Gestede.

  39. Say what we will about lamberts time but all joking aside one of his signings has paid for this rebuild.
    Bakuna, westwood, Kosak, Okore, Guzan, Bennett, Gil, Sinclair, richardson, cole, all still part of the squad, six of them first team regulars one our top scorer πŸ™‚ . 23 players for about the same money Tim bought 9.

  40. Mark,

    Talking again about Lambert, we’re still in the situation of having – effectively – a “bomb squad”. Players like Tonev, Zoggy, Richardson and even Kozak may not get back into the Prem side.

    What the heck do players like that do with themselves … they can’t be lying in bed all day!

  41. I don’t know John, I believe they are training with the squad, Apparently Kosak is trying to build confidence according to TS, god knows what the the celtic thing was? obviously he thinks he’ll get a chance but Remember his reaction to a bad challenge pre-season? he lost it big time.

    Tonev has been released and Richardson appears to be Amavi’s back up as Bennett is with Bournemouth on loan, Zoggy has been told his chances will be few and to find a club if he can but is still training, he only has 1 year left.
    when all said and done I don’t think its as bad as Lamberts approach but It must be hard training with no purpose but I’m sure their huge wages will comfort them.

    when is the final squad announced ? we have 33 first teamers!!!?

  42. wonder what our squad will be who going to be left out
    keepers
    guzan bunn steer

    defenders
    bacuna hutton crespo richardson
    clark richards lescott okore iilors

    midfielders
    sanchez westwood gana vertout gil sinclair cole

    strikers
    gabby kozac gestede ayew

    i have 2 spare places
    grealish traore amavi are under 21 don t have to be named

  43. james- I think Gardner will get a spot and I can’t see TS leaving zoggy out no matter if he’s surplus or not. Granted Gardner might get loaned out but that’s my first thoughts

  44. Yeh I agree with Mark, Gards and Nzog. Nzogbia played a big role in our form towqrds the end of last season, though not as big as I hoped/hes capable of. This season Gil and Traore well ahead of him but he can still play a role. Tim hasnt alienated him and he can talk the new french guys through the season.

    Senderos to sit out, is there anyone else?

    Mark – on the Lambert comment, wasnt it our now chief scout (name escapes me) who pushed for the Benteke deal? Snake was already with us

  45. Something the TS needs to be praised for is adding viable options to the first team, he’s not just made up the numbers but added proper competition for all places.

    Its shown by the way everyone’s team is different… last season it was just the odd player that would be different… this season teams are varying by 3 or 4 players.

    Now the window is shut I think this is the team I’d like to see…

    ————- Guzan
    Llori Richards Lescott Amavi
    —— Sanchez Gana
    Traore —- Grealish —- Gil
    ——— Sinclair/Gestede

  46. JL- The old saying/curse “may you live in interesting times” comes to mind, this flood of immigration is bound to end in military action at some point sadly.

    Andrew I wonder how we will use Adama? he’s quick in normal circumstances but used against a tiring defence he would be deadly. That’s the great thing as GOG said we have options to keep things fresh.

  47. The question has to be asked why didn’t Liverpoo use Llori? I have not seen him play yet and can’t remember him in the poo side ever. Ol’ Arry has given Liverpoo a right kickin’ in the press says its the worst transfer window he seen them have ever!!!! Brendans going to love that πŸ™‚

  48. Looks like Senderos out it is then.

    Im a fan of footballing CB’s so I like the look of Ilori already. But from the vid Mark posted, it does look like he has some glaring weaknesses too.

    His strengths look to be his composure, technical ability, passing and interceptions. His weakness may be his awareness of the attacker/danger. In that first goal in the vid 2 attackers got across him for the cross. The second he didnt sense the danger of the striker in behind. Guilty of ball watching a bit.

    Though I do love how comfortable and composed he is on the ball. He’d take an extra touch and take care with his pass rather than hoofing it when any sense of danger appears. His range and accuracy of passing is outstanding for a CB. Could be our Stones. But he needs to work on his weaknesses. He would massively benefit from a very experienced CB playing alongside him and we have a couple of those.

  49. Mark,

    Wot about 3 and 14 and some numbers after 25?

    Anyway, I suspect he’s not going to be a c-b … how’s he going to get any games when the object of getting games appears to be the reason why he came to VP?

    So I reckon r-b it is … or perhaps another defensive-midfielder.

  50. You could be right JL except his report said he can play left back or CB. Although I have also seen across the back from other sources.
    RB would make sense considering TS played crespo there. That said if you want a full-back get one not a CB!!!? We have 2 players that can’t play RB as it is and now We have 2 CB that we will play FB!!!? Ok safety in numbers but we don’t have a real first choice RB, almost as bad as our recent LB situation. As you say why would he come? but I think he’s been pushed, 2 other clubs wanted him and he wouldn’t go, why us at the death? was he told he’ll get no 1st team again?

    as always time will tell mate πŸ™‚

  51. Jl had re-think, Baker was 2 until he asked to get loaned out, Lescott is 16? but you would expect him to play when fit. not sure we can read much into the numbers bar 1 πŸ˜‰

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