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Everything posted by ham_aka_stam

  1. The main thing with him for me is that he never looks like he doesn't know what to do. Always calm and assured on the ball, and every time he lost it I feel it was worth the risk (vibes only here because I don't have any more stats, I'm spent). The number of times he drifted in one direction slightly, drew the oppo MFer and then drove forwards (couldn't find carry stats but I felt like he did a lot of the carrying that Bellhingham did in the first group match). I disagree too that Bellingham's passing was particularly adventurous, in fact I felt he often ran into cul-de-sacs and ended up having to pass backwards. I also don't think he was particularly higher up the pitch than Maino in the main. I think the ball gets played to him more though. This comparison for Mainoo and Rodri isn't meant to show them as equals, and they do different jobs (It's Rice who should be compared with Rodri) but it came up when searching for more stats. His passing percentage against Netherlands was far below his usual for the tournament, and I think that's due to him being more adventurous and making more of those passes in/around the opposition third as the heatmap shows. @themadsheep2001 this is after the Ned game,
  2. He completed 36 of 42 passes (86%). A very similar percentage to Bellingham (89%), and higher Saka (74%), Kane (72%) and Palmer (67%). He and 5 other players all played 1 key pass. He and Palmer were the only two players to attempt through balls (according to WhoScored) with Maino 1/2 and Palmer 1/1. He also completed 2/2 long balls. He completed joint most tackles (2) with Rice and Trippier, and completed more interceptions (2) than anyone else. I don't think he gave it away far too much...
  3. I think starting Kane against Spain makes more sense as we're going to need to keep the ball a bit more, having him doing his deep drop could be beneficial. If there's lots of space in behind I would like to see Watkins on sooner though.
  4. The problem for me was that Rice and Gallagher were hiding behind the two Slovakian CFs when our CBs had the ball. The movement was lethargic, and decisions couldn't be made quickly because players weren't immediately showing for the ball, and when they did, it was too late and the passing lane was blocked.
  5. "Imagine how bad we'd be if he didn't" is the natural counter argument. I'm not saying it's working, but I reckon that's Southgate's logic.
  6. Bit of a hot-take. The game was boring - 100%. But we all know by now, surely, that Southgate plays the group games as low-intensity rehearsals for the knockout games against more expansive teams? That's why he's got them playing with the ball to feet so much, being fairly static with the personnel/tactics and not necessarily making big calls early to go out and attack, because he's practicing for games where for ball retention is key, and trying to get the players playing together well. Viewed from that lens it was OK, certainly a better overall performance than Denmark, and we were more in control than the Serbia game, which admittedly had a better result. The passing improved massively once Mainoo came on (he's not the messiah, he's just a different player to Trent/Gallagher and likes those short quick passes rather than Trent's hollywood balls and Gallagher's suicide ones). The fact it's taken Southgate this long to realise TAA isn't the answer to the second midfield spot is concerning (or maybe it'd work better if he actually had runners to hit...), as is the lethargy, niggly arguments between players, and the individual mistakes being made. My biggest concern though, are the number of players we're asking to do something different to what they do for their clubs. Players (sportspeople in general) play best when playing instinctively. And whilst coaching something counter-instinctive is fine if you have the time to embed it (and a system around that supports it) I don't think that's the case in international management or specifically this England setup. Not giving Kane runners around him means his instinct to drop deep and play passes - a dangerous asset when used properly - is wasted, and it's counter intuitive as there's then no-one in the box Telling Kane to stay up wastes his talents, and potentially leads to him dropping out of frustration anyway, getting in the 10s way. It also makes play predictable. Playing Foden on the left, whilst he can play here, he isn't playing naturally and doesn't have the players (runners) around him to make him shine, and potentially further condenses the 10 space when he naturally drifts in Tripper is possibly the worst type of FB to have behind Foden too, it's working ok defensively, but he's having to play counter-instinctively to offer overlaps, where he then has no natural blueprint for what to do. The answer is to underlap, but that weakens Foden as a "winger", and again, further compresses the centre of the pitch. Bellingham looks so conflicted at 10, and since he was told to stop trying to do it all is playing like someone torn between what he wants to do and what the coach/team want him to do. The experiment with him and Foden switching is nice, but it's not natural, so it's happening in a slow, laboured way. He's used to playing deeper, being involved in everything, and being the guy making plays. With Kane and Foden in the team, he can't be that guy all the time. Playing TAA in CM is an experiment best left to club football / the bin. I would bring Bellingham into CM, pull Foden inside (they both want the ball, get them where they can use it) and play Gordon on the left. That way the only real issue is whether Kane can stay up, if not, sub him for Watkins. The Left Back is then the last issue and I think Trippier coming inside is far from the worst idea. Hopefully Southgate's theory comes good in the next game(s) otherwise it's made me look a twit for writing this mini-defence of him and given the players and the fans a frustrating first three games for nothing. I know we haven't been helped by the teams we've been playing as they aren't expansive, and are sitting deep to limit us.
  7. It's not handling the interview in isolation is it? It's being misquoted and dragged through the press afterwards. - "Mainoo considered playing for Ghana" - *England lose/get knocked out* - "Would this have happened if Mainoo had been more committed to the cause?" Don't get me wrong, I expect this was all discussed, and planned for, but it doesn't look great when some media twit tried to corner him.
  8. Why on earth is Zinchenko trying to muscle people about on set pieces
  9. Romania have won me over here with the support, however my brain is slightly baffled that Ukraine AREN'T the ones in yellow.
  10. Romania to try and stack their right side to defend against Mudryk, Stepananko and Zinchenko, only for a goal to come from the other side. I reckon 1-0 Ukraine.
  11. I agree, I think those moments when we need a counter threat it used to be that Rashford would push on and move more centrally whilst Kane dropped deep. The thinking was either to allow Foden to play himself into confidence/form, or to increase ball retention rather than encourage route-one balls (which Foden was helping to reduce by providing an additional midfield outlet when the ball was deep).
  12. Southgate's legacy, if nothing else, will be reducing that awful fear and pressure you could feel on the players.
  13. Good news though: I was massively concerned about defence before the tournament, and whilst our left side still looks weak in attack, Trippier was solid at the back, and I was massively impressed by Guéhi too. Complaining about the patterns of play in midfield being dominated by the best midfielder in the world is better than what I expected us to be moaning about.
  14. Don't be daft, all good. Looking out for each other online is lovely to see tbh.
  15. Head to Head, goal difference decides any ties in the third place lottery.
  16. I get it from the sense of showing them / future opponents that he's not going to be a pushover. And it can be effective. But repeating it is less effective than mixing it up. If they expect you to go on a solo run and you play a simple 1-2, you'll tear them open. Got four really clever technical players in the attacking third, needs to use them.
  17. Nothing like this happens from an individual mod btw, it's discussed, and if anyone asked genuinely for something to be changed back it would be. Aim is banter, not bullying, but happy to hear if we ever miss the mark. Not followed the thread but agree with a lot that's been said here. However, I think Kane being "anonymous" was a tactical decision as he said in his interview, he was told to occupy the defence and try to ignore his instincts to drop. However I think second half when they went to man marking he should have started dropping more. I also think Bellingham is taking things on a bit too much on his own, Foden is less physical, but just as capable on the ball and when there's three players on Jude I'd like to see him offload to Foden. Trent makes more sense if we're playing more runs in behind, but other than the three or four times we freed Saka down the right, I don't think he was worth the sacrifices in his game, and one of the two younger lads would have been better, but I can also appreciate easing them into their first tournaments. Biggest balance issue is Trippier I think, and it's less his fault than the lack of availability of Shaw really, a proper left sided full back would have made Foden's job a lot easier. Also think the referee let them get away with far too much, Bellingham was being targetted early on and the cards didn't come early enough (or enough of them) to deter them from carrying on. Professional performance I think, just needed a bit more of the good stuff and a bit more balance down the left. Pleased it didn't seem to take too much out of anyone's tank, we weren't fighting for the win, fatigue will be really important this tournament.
  18. I'm too late for a team but count me in on surprising some poor local charity with a load of random donations and vague messages of support for someone with unnecessary punctuation in their name. Consider me a balancer if anyone feels they need to stick to the minimum donation 👍
  19. I only want to see the camera on Ronaldo if he's having a strop and when Portugal lose.
  20. It's not racist, but when it comes to choosing a word for the opposite of progressive politics (i.e. moving forwards) it's not unfair to say some of the middle eastern cultures are more "retrospective". Whilst it's not exactly culturally sensitive, I don't think it's "racist" in any real sense. But... You're the one who said it yourself, so I'm not sure what point you're trying to make here.
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