October 22, 2019, 08:02:18 AM

Author Topic: 2013-2014 Season  (Read 137686 times)

Offline Juan

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #210 on: October 09, 2013, 11:47:11 PM »
Sterling may have pace and some level of ability but it won't be fashioned into a useful product until he improves his decision making and becomes much more tactically aware. He looks like a player who needs to go out loan and play regular first team football. At this stage he isn't at the level we need him to be at.

Both Suso and Alberto are far more tactically aware, as a lot of Spanish youngsters tend to be, and if possible, Alberto should be getting pitch time ahead of Sterling at the moment.

Agreed Tes. I think he needs to mature a bit on top of all of that. Trouble has a habit of finding him and I get the impression thats largely his own doing. A club will only take so much crap. The reason Suarez is still here is because his undeniable talent. Sterling is still just potential and until he starts fulfilling that talent his future at the club is never certain. As you say a season on loan could be exactly what he needs.

Offline Juan

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #211 on: October 09, 2013, 11:54:35 PM »
In fact Suso could go from being further down the pecking order than Sterling at the club to jumping ahead of him if this seasons loan at Almera goes okay. I cant see Sterling getting too many minutes so Suso could come back closer to being a first team regular. I dont see it happening because our squad isnt good enough but it may be worth our while getting Sterling out in loan in January.

Offline Martinmarx

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #212 on: October 10, 2013, 11:26:39 AM »
In fact Suso could go from being further down the pecking order than Sterling at the club to jumping ahead of him if this seasons loan at Almera goes okay. I cant see Sterling getting too many minutes so Suso could come back closer to being a first team regular. I dont see it happening because our squad isnt good enough but it may be worth our while getting Sterling out in loan in January.

Juan, I was thinking along those lines as well. I also agree with both of you Sterling may not be the new Barnes after all. Ibe then, he's got it IMHO. Physically he's better equipped and he looks a tad more competent in other aspects of the games than Sterling the little I've seen.

As for Suso, the reports I hear suggests he's something of an impact player for Almera but I might have gotten that wrong. I would say the center of the park is the main problem and, the way I see it, the main reason we perform less well in the 2nd half of games. If I were pick one formation it would look something like this.


----------------------------Mignolet-------------------------------

Johnson---------Toure-----------Sakho/Agger------Enrique

--------------------------Allen/Lucas-----------------------------

------------Henderson--------------Gerrard--------------------

-------------------------Coutinho---------------------------------

------------Sturridge---------------Suarez----------------------

I think this would help us crowd the center of the park and also bring out the best, offensively, of Johnson and Enrique. I think this 3-5-2 formation may be a great short-term solution but few teams in the history of this game have shown able to play it successfully over an extended period of time.

And that's right, I haven't given up on Allen. Lucas on the other hand...
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Offline Juan

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #213 on: October 10, 2013, 03:31:21 PM »
Agreed Martin I havent given up on Allen either. There must be huge question marks though hanging over his future at the club considering hes played so little. He has been a major disappointment to date. The centre of our midfield is easily now the weakest position in the team but Allen doesnt seem to be able to make any kind of  impression. I know hes been out injured but to be honest I wouldnt have even noticed had there not been pre match updates on the web that reminded me.

I havent given up on Lucas either. He hasnt come back the same player since injuring himself in that game at Stamford Bridge but up to that point he had proven the level he could reach and maintain so Ive hope he can get back there.

Its a little hypocritical of me really because I dont necessarily afford Skrtel the same reasoning. If Zenith were to come in with a 16 million bid in January thats being reported I would snap their hands off and take it.

We seem to have been linked with a move for Athleticos young Spanish midfielder Koke. I cant see the player wanting a move with Athletico playing as they are. One thing that is for sure at least Rodgers scouting network must be working because the players we tried to get and missed out on Costa and the Armenian lad seem to be doing well for their respective clubs.   

As for Sterling I still have high hopes for him but I think he has a lot of work to do to fulfill the potential he showed in recent years.

The team you have chosen there is definitely very strong. Im an Agger fan so I would have him automatically starting beside Toure. Sakho still has to earn his start but I would certainly prefer a back 4 that includes only two centre backs.

Looking forward to the positions that hypothetically need to be filled in the next few transfer windows. Central midfield is priority. I still think Suarez will go regardless of Champions league. It might be Bayern, Barca or Real Madrid but once one of the super clubs come in for him again I think he could be off. So hes someone we will have to replace. Costas price will have sky rocketed considering hes already got 10 league goals so we will probably have to look elsewhere. Im not sure whether we have adequate cover at left and right back yet. Time will tell. And whether we need to strengthen out wide or behind the forwards may depend on how Suso Ibe and Sterling develop in the next couple of seasons.

Offline Ed

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #214 on: October 10, 2013, 07:07:54 PM »
Agreed Martin I havent given up on Allen either. There must be huge question marks though hanging over his future at the club considering hes played so little. He has been a major disappointment to date. The centre of our midfield is easily now the weakest position in the team but Allen doesnt seem to be able to make any kind of  impression. I know hes been out injured but to be honest I wouldnt have even noticed had there not been pre match updates on the web that reminded me.
Joe Allen. It seemed to go wrong for him last season when
given deep defensive midfield duties. Lad became a single
point of failure, easily targetted by the opposition & overrun.

Not sure whether he had the shoulder injury at that time and
also the Rodgers system was in it's infancy, with the passing
concentrated deep in our own half - no team in their right mind
wants to pass the ball around in their own half!

Anyway it became obvious to some of us on here that Henderson was
the better option and somewhat belatedly the manager made the
switch, though my recollection is that the shoulder injury was cited as
the reason he lost his place.

Matters not, whilst Allen has been out Henderson has cemented his place
in the first 11 - amongst other things demonstrating flexibility to the point
where he was able to assume large parts of the Lucas role the other day -
albeit with a back 3 and at home to Palace.

As things stand Henderson is virtually undroppable in a midfield comprising
Lucas and Gerrard - both lacking natural athleticism (not saying Stevie doesn't
run around, just his contribution in that area is not sustained or effective enough
to be missed if he was out) . I see an opening for Allen as a replacement for
Gerrard around the 70 minute mark, in games where retention of possession
becomes key and breakneck 70 yard passes are less the order of the day.

It is somewhat unfortunate for him the way things have worked out, wouldn't
be surprised if his confidence has taken a bit of a knock. I don't see an automatic
starting role for him at the moment (I never did), he'll need to make the most of what
opportunities come his way now (work on his goal-scoring, in particular - not his strongest
suit) and show a lot of character.  Seems a decent guy, who's been a bit unlucky, so
I hope he at least gets the opportunity to show us what he can do.

Offline Tes

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #215 on: October 10, 2013, 09:30:49 PM »
Allen's out with hamstring problems, partly I suspect as a result of being out for a period with that shoulder injury, having played on too long with it.

Lucas' problem is two severe injuries, the second coming far too soon after returning from the first, having not reached anywhere near the allround fitness and conditioning required. That has meant his body has not be able to deal with the second injury, which in turn means it took even more from him than it ordinarily would.
I can actually see him having a so-so season whilst all the underlying indicators gradually get back to the levels required, so we could easily be looking to next season before he stands a chance of getting back to pre-injury form.

The midfield really is the outstanding weakness in the team. The manager has to decide what formation(s) he wishes to use so he knows how each part of the team needs to function within any given formation and adopted style. Then he needs to figure out how the midfield fits in, what is therefore required from the midfield, what is required from each individual midfielder and do we even have the required midfield components at the club.
Pace is the obvious characteristic missing from the midfield, but then goals and physical presence are also in low supply. Creativity could be better and we have to find a way of better blending defence into midfield, and midfield into the forward line than we do at the moment.

The next two midfield signings are going to be the most crucial in the manager's career thus far. 
Don't make the same mistake twice, there's plenty of new ones to choose from.

Those who choose to preach would do well to take note of their own sermons.

Offline Martinmarx

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #216 on: October 11, 2013, 11:29:03 AM »
All great posts. I even agree wholeheartedly with Ed for a change! ;D

I would agree Tes that the next two midfield signings are the most important in that if he gets them wrong it may undo all the good work and progress made thus far.

As I said I agree Ed with your sentiments, still the questin in the back of my head repeat itself: "He was one of the better CM's for Swansea, did he lose all that when signing for us? Why?".

Juan, I used to be very pro-Agger. IMHO, he's struggled a lot over the last 12 months often costing us points or nearly so. Even this season he's very errorprone. Sakho too has made a few mistakes but I would say they originate from the early-days syndrome rather than lack of quality. I really think this team is so centered around Agger and Gerrard (Suarez of course) but I do question whether they're helping us move forward or stand in the way of progress. Gerrard of late deffo looks the latter option.
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Offline barticus

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #217 on: October 11, 2013, 06:25:34 PM »
Whether the hierarchy is reading our posts...but the placement of kenny, robbie, stevie mac and rob jones around the place is a good thing...

Offline Tes

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #218 on: October 11, 2013, 10:02:15 PM »
I really think this team is so centered around Agger and Gerrard (Suarez of course) but I do question whether they're helping us move forward or stand in the way of progress. Gerrard of late deffo looks the latter option.

Therein lies the secret, and it must be a secret  ;D as very few managers truly pull it off, of true man management. 

Taggart understood that nobody could be bigger than him. Look at the way Sir Bob dispatch Emlyn Hughes and and Tommy Smith to Wolves ans Swansea respectively. Would Carra and Gerrard last as long under Taggart or Paisley?

I think Agger's become complacent. Not deliberately, but comfortable all the same having no competition for too long. Whether he can raise his game again, I guess we'll find out over the season.
Don't make the same mistake twice, there's plenty of new ones to choose from.

Those who choose to preach would do well to take note of their own sermons.

Offline Juan

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #219 on: October 13, 2013, 05:23:18 PM »
As things stand Henderson is virtually undroppable in a midfield comprising
Lucas and Gerrard - both lacking natural athleticism (not saying Stevie doesn't
run around, just his contribution in that area is not sustained or effective enough
to be missed if he was out) . I see an opening for Allen as a replacement for
Gerrard around the 70 minute mark, in games where retention of possession
becomes key and breakneck 70 yard passes are less the order of the day.

It is somewhat unfortunate for him the way things have worked out, wouldn't
be surprised if his confidence has taken a bit of a knock. I don't see an automatic
starting role for him at the moment (I never did), he'll need to make the most of what
opportunities come his way now (work on his goal-scoring, in particular - not his strongest
suit) and show a lot of character.  Seems a decent guy, who's been a bit unlucky, so
I hope he at least gets the opportunity to show us what he can do.

Henderson is as you say undropable at the moment but Id still be wary of how consistent he can be. I dont doubt his engine but I do question his mentality and technical ability. Like you though I believe he warrants a place in the centre of our midfield. At the moment he would be the first name down on the teamsheet for that position.

Like you I also would like to see Allen get a chance to prove himself before hes considered surplus to requirements. Not many players have starts like hes had and survive at a club like this but I do hope he can buck the trend and prove he was worth the 15 million.

Offline Juan

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #220 on: October 13, 2013, 05:25:42 PM »
Whether the hierarchy is reading our posts...but the placement of kenny, robbie, stevie mac and rob jones around the place is a good thing...

Agreed Bart. I often wonder why very few players from era's gone by get brought in to the club in certain capacities. Good to see the names you mentioned back.

Offline Tes

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #221 on: October 17, 2013, 12:58:14 AM »
Both McManaman and Fowler have 'settled down' from the laddish characters they were as players. Rob Jones is an interesting one. He and his wife were running a daycare nursery at one time. It's to be hoped he can pass on some of the undoubted defensive qualities that he had.
It was such a shame his career was blighted so heavily and then cut short by injury, as he would have been a terrific full back. As strong defensively as going forward and vice versa. Gary Neville wouldn't have had as many England caps early on as he did either.
Don't make the same mistake twice, there's plenty of new ones to choose from.

Those who choose to preach would do well to take note of their own sermons.

Offline Ed

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #222 on: October 17, 2013, 10:42:39 PM »
All great posts. I even agree wholeheartedly with Ed for a change! ;D
Jesus wept! Blue Moon ;D

As I said I agree Ed with your sentiments, still the questin in the back of my head repeat itself: "He was one of the better CM's for Swansea, did he lose all that when signing for us? Why?".
I'm not overly fussed about it, it's a question of whether he can make it
as first 11, becomes a quality, reliable squad player (somewhat expensive
for 15 million quid) or moves on. Wenger showed patience with Ramsay and
seems to be getting some reward for it. Given the start he's had with us it's
probably best to keep the pressure off him and give him some space to get
back on track. I think it's important that he gets the opportunity (on merit) to
show us what he can do, that we're a bit patient there.

To answer your question, I think what we saw at Swansea was a player
who'd quietly, under the radar, been allowed to develop (grow up with) an
evolving system which had reached a certain point of maturity - his comfort
zone. The switch to the big time (pressure/expectation) and the fact that he
was now playing with a group of players learning the system probably threw
him a bit and the injury to his shoulder hardly helped. It may be the case that
further down the line when more of the pieces are in place that there is a more
natural role for him in the team. I'd be waiting for him to be consistently coming
off the bench & making a difference to games (as opposed to making up the
numbers) before thinking of him in terms of first 11 though.

Anyway, I was delighted to see Lucas Leiva donning the yellow shirt of Brazil again
(really need him involved at international level):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjFxO0FqcHo&feature=player_embedded
« Last Edit: October 17, 2013, 10:46:08 PM by Ed »

Offline Tes

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #223 on: October 18, 2013, 01:53:04 PM »
Jesus wept! Blue Moon ;D
I'm not overly fussed about it, it's a question of whether he can make it
as first 11, becomes a quality, reliable squad player (somewhat expensive
for 15 million quid) or moves on. Wenger showed patience with Ramsay and
seems to be getting some reward for it. Given the start he's had with us it's
probably best to keep the pressure off him and give him some space to get
back on track. I think it's important that he gets the opportunity (on merit) to
show us what he can do, that we're a bit patient there.

To answer your question, I think what we saw at Swansea was a player
who'd quietly, under the radar, been allowed to develop (grow up with) an
evolving system which had reached a certain point of maturity - his comfort
zone. The switch to the big time (pressure/expectation) and the fact that he
was now playing with a group of players learning the system probably threw
him a bit and the injury to his shoulder hardly helped. It may be the case that
further down the line when more of the pieces are in place that there is a more
natural role for him in the team. I'd be waiting for him to be consistently coming
off the bench & making a difference to games (as opposed to making up the
numbers) before thinking of him in terms of first 11 though.

Anyway, I was delighted to see Lucas Leiva donning the yellow shirt of Brazil again
(really need him involved at international level):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjFxO0FqcHo&feature=player_embedded

Ramsey suffered big time with injuries which kept him of the reckoning, though in the long term I think it's done him a favour as he's now older and more mature, more able to cope with the pressures of being at a big club, and he's probably been forgotten about or written off by half the fanbase, so anything he produces is a bonus.

Excellent points about Allen's Swansea career. Some players are just a good fit for certain clubs. I hope he doesn't prove to be one of them.
It's hard to know exactly what sort of player he is and whether or how he would fit in to the midfield that Rodgers surely has plans for. I can't see that the way the midfield is at the moment is how Rogers wants it be. At least I'd hope not.
Don't make the same mistake twice, there's plenty of new ones to choose from.

Those who choose to preach would do well to take note of their own sermons.

Offline Ed

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Re: 2013-2014 Season
« Reply #224 on: October 18, 2013, 03:51:22 PM »
It's hard to know exactly what sort of player he is and whether or how he would fit in to the midfield that Rodgers surely has plans for. I can't see that the way the midfield is at the moment is how Rogers wants it be. At least I'd hope not.
My presumption is that a young, technical, physical, possession oriented midfield is
the aim.

                Lucas

Henderson          Allen

But then where does Coutinho fit in, I mean I could switch
that round to

Henderson       Lucas

             Coutinho

Obviously I've left Gerrard out to have a look. I agree totally with you
Tes on the difficulty of nailing down the single attribute which justifies
Allen's claim on a first 11 spot. It's easy with Lucas, he destroys the play
or Henderson, he has the energy. It seems and I don't mean to do him
down that Allen can pick a pass and retain possession. Thing is both
Lucas & Henderson can also do that and they are both more physical
than Allen.

Hence I don't see him as starting 11 in the short term and would think that he'd
have to develop something extra e.g. neither Henderson or Lucas are great at
scoring goals, but neither is Allen. I expect Henderson to be working on that side of
his game this season, so I think Allen is up against it but competition is healthy.