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 A calm head needed
Topic Originator: rossmcno1  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 21:36

***apologies long post!***

Management and leadership do need a strong element of calmness and stock-taking before making a big decision, and from what I've seen in the past of the guys on the board we are lucky - they have that quality in abundance.

They really do have a dilemma now with AJ and the management team, there are a number of key issues that they will now be considering.


- Signings and transfer window performance.

Jackson Longridge - good so far, but otherwise I'm struggling to see what the new players who have come in are bringing to the table to improve the team.

M'voto has gone, and in his place are Durnan (to be fair looked like he was coming onto a game in the 442 before injury but pre that was woeful), Devine - who I await to see the highlights as I think he was in a good position to stop Todd but instead lazily plumped to claim offside, and he's had some stinkers in a Pars top already. We were well warned about both Durnan and Devine, to be fair to Durnan Queens fans spoke highly of him, but as for Devine I don't see it.

Vincent, Thomson, Martin = all a similar ilk in that they are slow and deliberate, how we miss Beadlings energy. but midfield has been a let down every year of AJ's tenure in the Championship. Again today you see Vincent and Martin trying to sideways pass the ball all the time, rarely making the killer pass.

Wide men. Connolly - indifferent start, not as good as Cardle. Hippolyte, signed as a striker maybe but we don't know? Then we come to Louis Longridge, the enigma. The man who loses possession more than he retains, and has a new found habit of always going inside then leaving this massive gap on the right wing which exposes Craigen. These three guys do have one thing in common - (apart from in my opinion not being good enough) they always try and do the fancy thing rather than the direct simple option.

Up front it's take your pick time! Why not try an Andy Ryan who our manager paid for last year but hasn't quite worked out for us. Listening to his interviews Andy talks about how much he's bided his time. Well Andy, how about proving on the park that you're worth that time as frankly we've not seen it from you. Robbie Muirhead - a striker that last year played in League 2 - we've seen maybe twice, can't even get on today (more on this later). Can't rate the new lad Keena effectively enough yet but we shall see. As for Faissal - what's happened to this lad? Is it a case of not getting the right service, or has he genuinely lost it altogether?

- Game management

I've respected AJ's points on this in the past, in one of the supporters forums he was asked why he doesn't make subs often and why he leaves it late, and he gave what I thought was a fairly decent explanation around training and what's been worked on, superior fitness, risk of players getting into a game from the bench, tight games not wanting to upset balance too much. That all said it has been a big debate about his inability to change a game like some other managers in the league (Duffy and Morton last year 2-0 to 2-3 swing comes to mind with Mr Quitongo).

Today I saw madness appear in front of me - utter madness. Firstly as we were starting to make pressure look like it was about to count, he hooks El Bak - fair enough, but brings on Hippo, and swaps the smallest guy on the park up front. WTF?! He then brings on Keena for Andy Ryan - fair enough again, but not with the same winger still playing up front... The final change of Martin off for Thomson after the damage was done said it all. It's not as if he is short of potential options - especially compared to QOS bench. They had a bunch of kids and we had about 400 appearances worth on ours!

There are other examples of AJ's stubborness or inability to change, and when he does roll the dice it's like he's actually lost it. M'Voto up front last year in the playoffs...

- Results

This season have not been at the standard expected - quite simple. Performances have been poor and we just don't look anything like playoff contenders never mind title challengers. We're woeful. Slow. Devoid of ideas. Lacking in directness. Passionless. Apathetic.

This year
1-3
2-1
0-1
1-4
0-3
0-0
0-0
1-1
1-0
2-0
2-2
0-1

10 goals scored, 16 conceded, 3 wins, 4 draws, 5 defeats in the last 12 games.

Same time last year
5-1
2-0
3-1
4-0
3-0
2-3
3-0
3-0
1-3
0-2
0-0
3-1

29 goals scored, 11 conceded, 8 wins, 1 draw, 3 defeats in the corresponding 12 games

We've gone backwards quite a lot not just in results but also in entertainment.

- conclusion

This is where our board earn their corn for me. They will have had the objective setting, they will have the ear and voice of the players, the support staff and the fans of course. While their support of the manager may well be admirable, they will have to watch that the current apathy and anger of the fans doesn't turn into loss of cash. It's been a while since EEP was as vitriolic against a manager like it was today. St Mirren away last year he managed to turn it around and grind out a few wins and stay on, but this does feel different. If he was to stay and turn it all around with an amazing run of form then great stuff, but is anyone really in the mindset that it can happen? As for replacements we need again to stay calm and recognise who could be out there and look for the right person to take us forward. Goodwin at Alloa looks like a decent fit for me, but there will be others.

Time for the calm heads to analyse the facts and make their decision.



For me, this is probably why I'm a fan and not in the boardroom myself...

Thanks to Allan and Sandy for getting us out of League 1 and for trying to move us onwards in the Championship, but I think it's time for a change before it's too late for someone to come in and do what's needed.



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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: WORST  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 21:38

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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: PARrot  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 21:48

Quote:

WORST, Sat 20 Oct 21:38

I’ll read this tomorrow, I’m too pished to read it tonight.


Make sure you do.
Post of the year.

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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Glenrothes Par  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 21:55

sensible and well thought out
I dont think I've seen a more clueless set of players in Pars jerseys than I saw .
at East End today.
I do think we have some decent players out there, but for whatsoever the reason, they
cant seem to play together as a team. Surely the reponsibility for that lies with
management.
the concern for me is people will start deciding to stay at home.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: eastendalloapar  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 21:56

Excellent well thought out post.

matt forsyth
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: mach1  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 22:24

A good, calm and well considered post.

Have to say, I agree with most of it, including the conclusion.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: KirklistonPar  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 22:27

Great post btw, up until today’s match I’ve been all fir backing AJ but after today’s game I find it impossible to defend the decisions he made when trying to win the match. Too many of the players he has brought in the season have not performed since putting the shirt on. I’m not saying another manager will make them play better but certainly I can’t imagine it getting any worse, should we bring another manager in? Although I get the feeling that if AJ goes we will see Stevie Crawford handed the roll. So he’d be getting thrown in at the deep end. When it’s broken down like it has been in the op it’s time to say goodbye if the club still have sights on a play off position. If the board decides to keep AJ then the goal must be to cut out the dead wood in the next window & avoid relegation & finish mid table.
I now seriously in doubt if AJ has the ability to actually buy the players that can actually do the job on the pitch.
Posting this message makes me sad, but when I’ve witnessed each home game this season it’s hard to feel any other way. Even my six year old son said he wanted to go home today & that we were never going to score.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: parbucks  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 22:29

Sense and sensibility at last. Good post!
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Raymie the Legend  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 22:42

I actually think we have a stronger squad than last year, however, the manager has still to figure out how to make the best use of it.
The defence was a mess at the start of the season and, to his credit, he eventually saw the light and made changes that has saw us leak less goals.

He now needs to get the balance right in midfield and up front. In both areas of the park, he has not found the right blend and he needs to figure it out quickly, otherwise we can forget a top 4 place.

I'd start up front, firstly. The pairing of Ryan and FEB clearly doesn't work. Both lack the physicality needed to hold the ball up and win a fair share of the battles. Play one or the other, but not both.

The clock is ticking...




It's bloody tough being a legend
Ron Atkinson - 1983
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: JTH123  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 22:47

If they do decide to sack him I don't think they'll be so bold as to go for Crawford after the last attempt to promote an inexperienced manager from within went so badly wrong.
Having said that I'm impressed with what Goodwin has done but he hardly yet has what could be described as a track record.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: hudza  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 23:28

Good post
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: renegade master  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 23:42

Great post Ross


Topic Originator: JTH123 like | nolike
Date: Sat 20 Oct 22:47

If they do decide to sack him I don't think they'll be so bold as to go for Crawford after the last attempt to promote an inexperienced manager from within went so badly wrong.
Having said that I'm impressed with what Goodwin has done but he hardly yet has what could be described as a track record.

Jim McIntyre?
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Sierra Nevada  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 23:43

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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Paralex  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 23:55

The main problem is lack of a cutting edge. We do well up to the edge of their penalty are and run out of ideas to penetrate the opposition defense. We didn't look like scoring today. Last season we had a goal threat because we had three players who could penetrate on the flanks, mainly Cardle, Higginbotham and Williamson. We have no goal threat from midfield. Do today's players lack power in shooting. Fais has little power and most of his attempts are no more than a pass back. To be fair, the players we have brought in are of the bargain basement variety and they have to prove themselves at this level. So far they have been found wanting. Will a different manager make any difference? If we went down that road it will take time to see any improvement or worse it will take time and we may see no improvement.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Sierra Nevada  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 23:57

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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: vasco  
Date:   Sat 20 Oct 23:57

Jock Stein didn't have what could be described as a track record. Not saying Goodwin is the answer tho.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Berkey  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 00:41

Cant argue on your analysis of the signings, I’m finding L Longridge has killed our right hand side and is worse at keeping the ball than higgy.

J longridge looked great in the first few games but is now resorting to take s touch and punt up the park.

Faz and Andy and ball greedy strikers who need to feed of a mogg or Brewster type target man, totally incompatible with each other’s game.

Vincent is slow deliberate and can only pass sideways or back. He sits deep which doesn’t work as that’s where Martin wants to plays. Mean no support for strikers in the middle and no one there to pick up the second ball after our punts.

Just sitting here drenched in my own negativity!
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Sierra Nevada  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 00:44

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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: da_no_1  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 01:26

Quote:

Sierra Nevada, Sat 20 Oct 23:57

I think Aird is a big miss this season.


Aird was rotten for most of the season. He came alive when it was new contract time.

"Some days will stay a 1000 years, some pass like the flash of a spark"
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Paradox  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 07:07

Quote:

da_no_1, Sun 21 Oct 01:26

Quote:

Sierra Nevada, Sat 20 Oct 23:57

I think Aird is a big miss this season.


Aird was rotten for most of the season. He came alive when it was new contract time.


I'm sure I read a stat recently where Aird was top of the pile for assists in the Championship this season?
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: GG Riva  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 07:21

Very good OP and a good response from Raymie. There's little doubt we have a decent squad of players and with the exception of the LC game v Hearts and the 2nd half at Tannadice, we haven't seen the best of them.

That's something the manager needs to turn around and fairly soon. I'm sure he's well aware of that. A scrappy, ugly win v Dundee United next week would be a good start.



Not your average Sunday League player.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Sliema Par  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 07:27

This is a horrible situation but there is little to argue with that well constructed OP which was probably weeks in the making.

Many fans are saying nothing will change.I do not agree.

Gates are down 17% and some say they will suspend payments to the Centenary Club.

Those are the Club's life support system.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Mario  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 07:45

Thought some of the possession was most impressive, only problem being half a dozen or more passes resulted in zilch progress
Martin can certainly pass accurately but doesnt so much telegraph it as send a text.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Tenruh  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 08:07

Quote:

da_no_1, Sun 21 Oct 01:26

Quote:

Sierra Nevada, Sat 20 Oct 23:57

I think Aird is a big miss this season.


Aird was rotten for most of the season. He came alive when it was new contract time.


Got to agree there, don't think AJ had a magic wand in the last quarter of last season, but the players started playing for their livelihoods and as proved not necessarily at eep.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: DA_NO1  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 09:02

We are still in a position that a win over Dundee utd next week will see us a point behind with a game in hand.

This league is ridiculously tight this season probably more so than any other.

Yesterday we lacked the final product, didn't play to badly tbh, restricted them to very little but once again undone by the sucker punch.

Subs yesterday were a bit strange as already stated, can see we are missing Williamson on the right and I would have liked to have seen him brought on
as the amount of space on the side during the second have needed exploited. The 3 player that didn't come on would have been the players I would have brought on, Vincent and Martin off with Craigen and Beadling in the middle and Williamson over at the right and Conolly off for Muirhead

Midfield is where its lacking at the moment, so many side way passes it was like watching tennis, Martin can pick a pass if he has the 10 seconds he want but close him down and he is like a man down.



"a picture paints a thousand words"
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: mach1  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 09:10

We did play badly tbh, only for AJ, with his tactical awareness, making us even worse.

The first half was a borefest of the highest order, and we got maybe ten minutes of exciting football midway through the second half, until the manager's master strokes turned the game in QOS favour.

I must say I agree about Martin, he might be quite composed, but that's it. He doesn't look like a match winner to me, but sadly he is one of our better players.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: StevenPar77  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 09:39

Is Dobbie the top goalscorer in Britain? So frustrating as he was more or less anonymous for the majority of the 90 minutes. I really thought after he slipped when in on goal that that was their chance as they had done very little up until that point that they did actually score.

The subs were bizarre though. Especially after going a goal down.

http://www.agiftfor.net
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: GG Riva  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 10:49

Quote:

DA_NO1, Sun 21 Oct 09:02

We are still in a position that a win over Dundee utd next week will see us a point behind with a game in hand.

This league is ridiculously tight this season probably more so than any other.

Yesterday we lacked the final product, didn't play to badly tbh, restricted them to very little but once again undone by the sucker punch.

Subs yesterday were a bit strange as already stated, can see we are missing Williamson on the right and I would have liked to have seen him brought on
as the amount of space on the side during the second have needed exploited. The 3 player that didn't come on would have been the players I would have brought on, Vincent and Martin off with Craigen and Beadling in the middle and Williamson over at the right and Conolly off for Muirhead

Midfield is where its lacking at the moment, so many side way passes it was like watching tennis, Martin can pick a pass if he has the 10 seconds he want but close him down and he is like a man down.


Good, calm, rational post, DA, although I thought we were poor first half. Agree about the subs, too.



Not your average Sunday League player.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Buspasspar  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 18:25

rossmcno1 that has to be one of the best posts I have read on here and because of its calm sensible and analytical nature there is not the usual bickering and arguing amongst our selves
I rarely post or criticise but on Saturday I saw too many individuals and no team ethos The midfield too ponderous, lacking in ideas and needing too many touches before the pass to the forwards which by then the space they had run into had been closed down
I was impressed by the big blond laddie for Queens he put himself about won every 50/50 ball and some 40/60 as well, a nasty wee stamp in the second half that the officials missed
Also like many have said I found the substitutions strange as well

Its a funny old game



Post Edited (Sun 21 Oct 19:09)
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: WheelKing99  
Date:   Sun 21 Oct 23:31

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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Grant  
Date:   Mon 22 Oct 00:05

think people were missing the point with what AJ was trying to achieve with the Faissal sub, it was very, very evident that we were not linking anything between the midfield and the attack, as everyone I'm sure agrees on Faiss and Ryan don't work, neither of them are traditionally strikers who you'd expect to link the play.

Connolly wasn't put on upfront, he was to play behind Ryan, drop off him try and link the attack, it's where he played for York allot. The drama is that as a whole Connolly, and especially Longridge were having bad games, they were taking to long on the ball, they weren't really playing many dangerous crosses, they were playing a bit *****. Longridge doesn't play well as a winger for me, I don't know whether it's an instruction but he wonders all over the place, this might work if Craigan overlapped more but we often found ourselves coming into congested areas.

IMO the best sub to make would've been one that brought Williamson on, there's multudes of different ways you could've went about it, a straight swap, you could've taken of our midfielders off and pushed Craigan into that role. I think people are overreacting as a whole to the subs, I personally would've brought on Williamson, I would've preferred to have seen Muirhead on than Keena, and I'm not sure what the last sub was trying to achieve but they're not as bad as people are making out. Putting Connolly behind the striker was a brave move and one I quite liked, you can't just expect to bang two strikers together and expect them to work, you need to find partnerships. The bigger drama with the sun was Hippo coming on and contributing SFA.



Post Edited (Mon 22 Oct 00:05)
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: rossmcno1  
Date:   Mon 22 Oct 01:41

Thanks all for the feedback. It was a theruptic typing exercise! I have enjoyed AJ’s time at the club as a whole but realistically it’s now at a point where I’m not enjoying watching the Pars underperform so dramatically this season - and sounds like I’m not alone.

Grant thanks for your points. With the Connolly move, surely the same point would apply about partnerships here as it would do with Ryan/Fais. The linkage of the play only really works when it’s been worked on in training and previously. I saw little evidence of that yesterday. The timing of the sub confused me as it was as we were starting to get closer to scoring, it seemed to just halt our momentum. We seem to agree that he got the other two subs wrong as well by reading your post. My overall opinion on AJ is that he has not demonstrated the best use of subs for tactical gain throughout a lot of his time with us, and this is frustrating.



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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: wee eck  
Date:   Mon 22 Oct 09:53

I couldn't understand Connolly's role after Faiss went off either but maybe Grant has something with his explanation. AJ is usually criticised for making 'like for like' subs and now he's criticised for trying something different. Yesterday the Everton manager made three subs. Two scored and the other had an assist but he had the good grace to admit that sometimes subs work out and sometimes they don't. I didn't think the subs AJ made turned the game in QOS's favour.

The Ryan/Faiss partnership obviously isn't working. Ryan is pretty limited outside the penalty box and a lot of moves break down when he gets the ball. We had the same problem with McManus last season but he compensated with a bit of physicality. I'd like Muirhead and Keena to be given a chance together.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Stevopars1984  
Date:   Mon 22 Oct 10:07

Some of the players Aj has let go is baffling aswell. Needs to be a big improvement and quickly.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: GG Riva  
Date:   Mon 22 Oct 12:02

''Some of the players Aj has let go is baffling as well.''

Who's that then? Don't be coy. Name some names......



Not your average Sunday League player.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Raymie the Legend  
Date:   Mon 22 Oct 12:07

I did notice Connolly motioning about where we was meant to be playing, when the sub was made.
My feeling was that he was unsure what was expected of him and consequently, he seemed to get drawn into playing further up the park than perhaps intended?

I would have thought that these types of formation changes would have been worked on in training to avoid any possible confusion?

Like I say, I'm only assuming that Connolly wasn't sure where he was to play. I don't know that for certain




It's bloody tough being a legend
Ron Atkinson - 1983
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: preston par  
Date:   Mon 22 Oct 13:16

Robbo

Williamson
Beadling
Ashcroft
Longridge

Higgy
Martin
Vincent
Connolly

Muirhead
Kenna

Devine has been brutal in nearly every game he's played in. Craigen isn't a right back and it shows. Think Connolly deserves another start. Fais and Ryan need dropped (Fais more than Ryan IMO). Could be here all day writing reasons but basic facts are some players are too complacent right now. Stick Crawford up top and he'd have more of an impact than Fais since he came back.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: wee eck  
Date:   Mon 22 Oct 13:27

I quite like the look of that team but I'd stick with Durnan or Devine at centre back instead of Beadling who I'd play in midfield instead of Vincent. Craigen might do a job at left midfield linking up with Jackson Longridge the way Higgy does with Williamson.

The reserves play Falkirk at Grangemouth tomorrow which will give a few contenders a chance of some game time before Saturday.
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: preston par  
Date:   Mon 22 Oct 13:31

Just think we need to freshen things up. I think Beadling could easily slot in at CB if Durnan isn't fit for our next game. Ashcroft seems to have picked up the bad habit Morris made of making one absolutely glaring mistake per game!

Also, does anyone know the exact wording that is in the loan agreement that prohibits Vincent from shooting?
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Berkey  
Date:   Mon 22 Oct 14:17

like that team preston but with beadling in the middle for Vincent.

craigen is better defensively that Williamson but you get more going forward with williamson. guess we're at that point where so we play to win and maybe get beat or play not to loose and maybe sneak a win?

Just sitting here drenched in my own negativity!
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Sliema Par  
Date:   Tue 23 Oct 08:23

Robbo

Williamson
Ashcroft
Durnan
Longridge

Craigen
Beadling or Vincent
Martin
Longridge L

Ryan
Muirhead or Higgy

However this would depend on whether they are fit.The defeat of a highly experienced second team last week set alarm bells ringing.I too was incredulous Tom and Robbie did not come on on Saturday.We are into late October.Surely they are ready now?
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 Re: A calm head needed
Topic Originator: Bucuresti Par  
Date:   Tue 23 Oct 09:05

The squad is large, we have plenty of options but quite what the best 11 is I am not sure. Personally I would try 4-2-3-1, which might seem strange given we now have 4 out and out forwards. Anyway.

Robinson

Williamson
Ashcroft
Durnan (if fit)
J Longridge

Beadling
Martin (Malaury not Lewis!)

Higgy (if fit, if not Hippo but swapping wings with Connolly)
L Longridge
Connolly

Faissal

Both fullbacks overlapping, Beadling to add some aggression and energy in the middle. L Longridge (as frustrating as he is) I think would be best behind a striker and would (again hopefully!) link the play. Higgy and Williamson combine well and I think Connolly could build up more understanding with Jackson. Hard to choose a striker, Faissal for me is the more talented so I would probably persist with him.
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