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opinionsarelike

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  1. This could definitely be argued. However, the intent under Sarri was always to play like a big team, which in my opinion Conte never had. We couldn't do it under Sarri, maybe he tried changing too many things too fast without the correct personnel, but he stuck to his principles no matter the opponent. I believe we are reaping the benefits of having a squad that's used to play possession, play out from the back at all times football right now, not to mention the inclusion of Loftus Cheek and Hudson Odoi, albeit maybe too late, in the squad. We've grown over the years. Mourinho came and and implemented a siege mentality, us against them, backs against the wall and all that, but the modern way of football is to have the dominant teams dominate in a much greater extent than ten years ago. We aren't the underdogs anymore, and it's about time we acted like what we are, one of the premier clubs in Europe. For that, I think Sarri was the right appointment and I also think he did a great job. He kickstarted the project Lampard is now fine tuning. At the end of the day, both Sarri and us made an upgrade. Conte, since we are in his thread, is a terrific coach when things are going his way. He also has one of the most skewed moral compasses in football. Him taking over Inter is like Terry accepting a job at Tottenham. I don't care if it was a good opportunity for him, as I wouldn't if Terry took over Spurs; both would be dead to me.
  2. It was a joke, with the joke being that Sarri was the one at fault. I don’t think Sarri nor Lampard are at fault - the shackles are constructed by Barkley’s limited footballing skills.
  3. Finally free from the shackles that Lampard has put on him.
  4. One of the reasons why we dominated Liverpool to the extent we did late in the game is because of Jorginho. His ability to hit passes early, as well as his range of passing, is what makes Liverpool have to move their entire team from side to side. Fabregas was a much better passer in a vacuum, but he could never control games from the mid circle like Jorginho could. They are two different players, and comparing them directly helps no one.
  5. And one of the least natural footballers. It is probably unfair on my part, but I think that Batshuayi looks to be about as bright as a black hole on the pitch. Wouldn't hesitate for a second to sell if we could somewhat get back what we gave for him.
  6. In the terms of absolute impact on games, week in week out over a period of years, I reckon Kante is the best midfield player we’ve had. Lampard is a greater Chelsea player due to his part in those great teams between 04-12, and was more damaging at his best. Essien also probably had a higher peak level due to his physical prowess. But in terms of dominating 90 minutes, every week, throughout the span of three-four years (counting his Leicester days), you’d be hard pressed to find anyone who’s done it better than Kante. He’s the best runner ever to grace the football pitch, and has very underrated technical skills.
  7. Not getting Paredes, especially at this price, would be completely fine. He’s not particularly good, and was always going to be a back up. I also really like Mount, but the board are living in cuckoo land if they believe he a) can play the Jorginho role, b) that Mount is good enough to start most games for us next year or c) that our midfield options are so good that Mount can be the first backup for that player as our most offensive midfielder. The lack of a functional striker has somewhat hid the fact that we lack a working midfield dynamism. Barkley is not it, he’s at best a back up for a top team due to his lack of spacial awereness. Loftus-Cheek has talent, but can’t go through 90 minutes without placing his hands on his hips at 60 min player (which is critical, given that he’s been living as a professional athlete for 4-5 years already) and looks to be about as robust as Sturridge. Kovacic has buckets of talent, but will never give us what we need in that specialist role Hamsik fulfilled for Sarri at Napoli. I’m all for not blowing massive amounts for backups, which Paredes would have been. But the money then would need to be reinvested into the first XI. And if Higuain performs as we only can wish, finding that offensive midfield player should be very high on the priority list come summer.
  8. It's so frustrating and confusing. Some times, the club makes these purchases which seems in line with what the club tries to do. Pulisic is an example of that; young, pacey and can be formed into a better player. Yes, we did probably overpay, but we overpayed for the correct type of player. The club must've known that our striker situation was uncertain last summer. We gave Morata one more chance, which was probably the correct one given the investment and the toxity Conte brought in his last 3-4 months at the club. I don't really want to talk about Giroud, he's in my opinion awful, and we sacked probably the only coach who will work with that sort of player. Safe to say that our gamble didn't pay off. But that's okay, not every gamble pays off. However, the club should have had every scout on the look out for a new striker since August, week in and week out, so that we could get someone in in January if all things went tits up. So, here we are, in January, and the names we are linked to are seemingly Callum Wilson, Gonzalo Higuain and Jamie Vardy. The former will cost a fortune, barely has any knees left and hasn't played a full season in years. Higuain is declining, and will have to move to a faster league. He's also old and a wage drain. Jamie Vardy is a 31 year old striker who lives on the shoulder and running in behind, however we don't get space in behind. How come these are the alternatives we end up looking at, when the club fully knew that we made a gamble on Morata this season? I just don't understand what the club does at times, it makes no sense to me how we try to hardballl sometimes. You have legends like Lampard and Terry, who only got 1 year deals, but then you run the club into such a state of panic that you give out a 1,5 year contract for Giroud? And we're definitely looking at the same for Higuain, Juventus wants him off their books so we'll have to keep him for at least 1,5 years.
  9. No, Sarri was already the coach of Napoli when Paredes was in Empoli. Here’s how I look at the situation. Paredes comes in, and starts a maximum of 15 games a season, because a) whether you like it or not, Jorginho is Sarri’s guy and b) Sarri doesn’t rotate much. So, you’ll spend 30 million on a back up with little room to grow, and I am really against that logic. Secondly, Paredes would play the same specialist role as Jorginho plays now. This role is most likely gone when Sarri leaves, which wouldn’t be the most unnatural thing for Chelsea to do. Barella in the other hand can already do a very good job in all three midfield roles, with the extra bonus being that he can be further specialized in one role later down the road, if the club sees the need for that. This flexibility will be worth its weight in gold when we’re changing our manager and most likely our style once again. When I look at Paredes, all I can think about is Xhaka. Both are world class at spraying the Hollywood ball, however Sarri does not want the Hollywood ball. Both are tough in the tackle, but also indisciplined and slow legged. Both have a mean shot, except when it hits Row Z, which is much more often than not. I think Barella is the better player now, and no doubt will be the better player in the future. In my opinion, Jorginho’s backup can be found within our ranks, seeing as he won’t play many meaningful games at all. Barella has a great relation to Zola, seemingly has an admirerer in Sarri and plays alongside Jorginho in the national team. I believe this little guy will be the future to the next midfield he’ll join. That being said, I fully expect the board to choose the cheaper, easier solution. Signing Barella seems too logical from various aspects that I’m certain they’ll pick the wrong option.
  10. Yes! Spuds let us have the ball so much that Harry Kane felt the need to take two minutes on the ground, despite never being injured, just to try and stop our momentum.
  11. When Mourinho shut down his opponents in the first leg of a cup tie, he was praised with terms such as “masterclass”. Well, if not for a wrongly given goal, I’ve rarely seen us shut down such a good team away from home, and this dates all the way back to Mourinho’s first stint here. Still don’t agree with the criticism of Jorginho either. Referring back to the starter of the thread; remember last year, when we couldn’t play out from the back for toffee? That has changed, and the main factor is Jorginho’s ability under pressure and willingness to get the ball. People expected the reincarnation of Pirlo, but Jorginho’s role is much more akin to Busquets’ role in Barcelona. Jorginho also plays as our third deepest player when in possession. If you’re measuring him on goals and assists, you might as well start measuring centre backs on the same basis. I think this team would be so so so much better with a proper striker up front. It relieves so much pressure having a threat in the middle. Giroud could try until tomorrow and still not get to the first post in time, he’s done and dusted for a top team. Morata is done at the club, and that’s a correct decision, but against Forest he gave us what we needed yesterday. Sarri has solved 50% of the equation, because we are now good in defense. The offensive play will need training ground time, and some new players.
  12. Man City's style is to pass until you find openings. Luckily for them, they are very well drilled (took a year, watch Guardiola's first year for measure - they had plenty of Southampton-games ...), which makes it so that they always have moving targets to hit passes to. The system is the same as all of Guardiola's teams; it is to take control of the ball, never let the opponent get it, and if you lose it you're chasing the ball as hard as you can. That is Sarri's vision of football as well, as a matter of fact he's looked at as a more direct version of Guardiola with his buzzword-esque term "vertical tiki-taka". But it will take time, and there will be games where it will look stale. I'll give you one thing, though, and that is that Guardiola truly understands the value of pace and width. Their two wingers are electric, and hugs the touchline when they don't have the ball. Once they get the ball, they seek to the middle, only to be overlapped by two electric full backs. We have Hazard and Willian on the flanks, or "flanks", because they don't stay wide. Hazard can be excused, he's good enough for it to work most of the time, but Willian serves very little purpose offensively in our team. As far as our full backs go, we have Alonso who I reckon is slower than dirt, and always looks to underlap, whilst Azpilicueta isn't much of a threat going forward. This is my major gripe with Sarri; he sticks with players who I, at least, think as so far off of his vision of high octane football. It's the same mistake Conte and Mourinho made, trusting players who does not perform and/or doesn't fit the system. If anything, that will be his downfall, not his system or style, because that has already proven itself in the Premiership.
  13. Is that why Guardiola beat the points record by some distance playing a style many deem as indirect, with many small and physically not-so-big players?
  14. Fair enough, but why not focus on what Hudson-Odoi actually possesses; great attacking ability and an actual goal threat. Or, look at it like this. Hudson-Odoi must improve in the defensive aspect of the game, but has (potentially) exceptional qualities in the offensive phase. Willian has exceptional defensive skills as a winger, but has produced numbers offensively more akin to a defender his whole career. Both are attacking players, and my understanding of attacking players is that they should contribute more in attack than defense. We need a striker, that's obvious to anyone with eyesight, but when the optimal striker solution seems elusive, the offensive production needs to come from other areas of the pitch. Willian and Pedro have both tried, but can't string 90 good minutes, let alone 3-4 matches, together. Can Hudson Odoi really do worse than two goals and three assists in 20 appearances (most of them starting with the best players available)? I think he would produce more. Would we become weaker defensively? Probably, but that's not where the shoe pinches in this side, we are actually a pretty decent defensive team (which of course is partly due to Willian and Pedro's defensive qualities). And if we really are going to keep banging on about the defensive phase, which arguably is easier to teach than the offensive phase, how is Hudson-Odoi supposed to learn this at the training ground? You need match intensity, repeatedly, in order to improve your actual form in matches - that's the specificity principle in both theory and praxis. I really support Sarri's vision for our team. I like the football, and think it's the way forward in the modern game, but old dogs can't be taught new tricks. I completely understand the pressure of getting results, but when the old dogs don't give you results, the defense of Sarri's selections become, at best, weak.
  15. Barella has cult hero written all over him. I have watched him the last year, and he has all the hallmarks of a great, great modern day midfield player. I think he would be absolutely incredible in Sarri's high octane vision of how football should be played. Not to mention that Zola was assistent coach in Cagliari when Barella got his debut. It almost makes too much sense; getting in a young, two-way midfield player who tackles, runs, shoots and passes well.

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