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About DaRick

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    First Team Regular
  • Birthday 20/08/1989

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    Brisbane, QLD, Australia

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  1. Real case to be made for strengthening squad depth in January, for a good chunk of ours just doesn't cut it (ST in particular). LB is different in that there are two squad options where there should be a bonafide starter. If Azpi wants to play LB (which will harm us offensively), then we'll more cover on RB too. Seems like a very flat, lifeless performance. New manager bounce + fatigued side never bode well.
  2. Nice little cameo. He is a useful option to bring off the bench because he accelerates quickly, especially when the ball is at his feet. Someone like that is always going to be handy against tired defences, especially since he acts as a 'dummy runner' - basically somebody who has the knack of drawing defenders onto him and leaving other attackers free. Better yet, he has the vision to pick out unmarked attackers and pass the ball to them. On three occasions so far that has led to goals - against Liverpool, Southampton and now Newcastle.
  3. A real slog of a game against a side that was very committed in defence and stifled our ability to create chances for much of the game, but good sides come out on top in these encounters and that's exactly what we did. RE the goal, Pulisic acts as a 'dummy runner', just like he did against Southampton - he draws several opposition defenders onto him, which allows him to use his vision to release the ball to another unmarked player. Not only that, but yet again Alonso was free in the box. The goal he scored had a distinct similarity to the 'own goal' he drew from Newcastle at their place last season - not only was it struck from a similar angle, but he also acted as a spare attacker in the box. That made him very dangerous early on in 2018-19, because opposition defences were so fixated on marking our attackers that they left him free to slip in and potentially score (he did the same thing against Arsenal). The same thing happened here today.
  4. Very lifeless first half. Newcastle are clearly parking the bus, but so far it's working for them - we haven't created as many chances as we normally do. Must step things up in the 2nd half.
  5. Four of those five are wing-forwards. I think @Argo was referring more to CF's.
  6. Mount/RLC remind me of Gerrard/Lampard - not identical players, but their strengths (one-touch passing, forward runs, goal threat) and weaknesses (defensive positioning) nonetheless overlap enough that it is difficult to get the best out of them when they're both on the pitch simultaneously. Play them both in a 3-man midfield and you don't receive enough defensive cover, while if you try them both in a 2-man midfield you'll find that neither is good enough in terms of defensive positioning to sit back and cover the other while they go on a forward run. Plus, while Ruben works harder than he used to, he still isn't exactly the most energetic player going around, nor does he have the most stamina. In a 2-man midfield you want energetic players with excellent stamina, because they will have to cover quite a lot of ground. Drinkwater/Kante worked so well together at Leicester because both had those qualities.
  7. Maybe only librarians could get attached to Arsenal - after all, their stadium is essentially one massive library.
  8. I know a lot of posters here don't follow cricket, but Man U post-SAF remind me awfully of the Australian Cricket Team post-Warne/McGrath. Both were consistently very good-to-excellent sides for a very long time - over 20 years in Man U's case and almost that long in the case of my country's cricket team. Both won series/championships/titles so often for so long that you kind of assumed that they would do it forever after a while. Unfortunately, Cricket Australia did as well, and from the early 2000's (when the AUS side were usually demolishing opposition sides) they moved away from nurturing elite talent into growing their 'brand' (by increasing participation) while cutting costs. Similarly, Man U used to be excellent at nurturing talent (Class of '92, Ronaldo/Rooney/Fletcher), but towards the end of SAF's reign they moved away from nurturing talent into growing their 'brand' (by securing lucrative marketing deals) while minimising costs as much as possible (hence SAF going for relatively cheap wildcard signings like Bebe/Hernandez). They obviously assumed that SAF's mastery of the league (and its refs LOL) and managerial acumen would fill in the gaps caused by their under-investment and thus secure them championships/Top 4 spots forever more. However, that was obviously not to be, and like the Australian Cricket Team, Man U has endured inconsistent results since SAF's departure. Like the Australian Cricket Team, they've had their days, but they've never conclusively shown themselves to be the best side in ENG for any lengthy period of time. Both also have endured humiliating lows (2010/11 Ashes, OGS full-time tenure, 5-3 loss vs Leicester City). It also doesn't look like that will end anytime soon for either, because the management cares more about maximising profits and marketing than actual performance.
  9. My understanding was that LVG and Di Maria didn't really click, plus Di Maria never really settled in Manchester - partially due to an attempted burglary. James and Greenwood are pretty talented, but I feel that both have been given too much responsibility. Rather than learning the ropes and being eased in, they're being thrust into a failing side, which can't be great for their self-confidence or development. Agree with the rest of the post in its totality.
  10. DaRick


    Today we saw a side of Willian that we rarely see. When we think of Willian over the totality of his time at Chelsea, we think of rapidity, agility, work ethic, mazy runs and 'hero goals' (spectacular long range strikes). We certainly don't think of through balls to set goals up on a platter for teammates - but that's what we saw today. Another superb game.
  11. Again, he demonstrates the predatory instincts and improvisational skill that you see in every good striker. Not only does he latch on to the weighted pass from CHO, but just as the ball looked like it was getting away from him, he stuck his boot out and lobbed the keeper! I'd be surprised if he doesn't make hay against most sides this season.
  12. It's not that big of a surprise to see Michy come on, get on the end of a ball, and score. What was a surprise, on the other hand, was that he did it after tracking back, playing a really impressive one-two with Pulisic and moving into the left channel before slotting the ball home. In the past, Michy was content to simply sit in the box and wait for chances to come his way. He was pretty selfish and didn't really work with the rest of the team to help create goals. Hopefully he's becoming a more all-round striker. If so, he'll be pretty decent cover should Tammy be indisposed.
  13. No - at the start of the New Year maybe, but even then I think Man City had a game in hand. Losing from here will be even more of a choke than that was. As for Chelsea, a big win. Maybe we didn't perform quite as well as the scorecard indicated, but who cares? It's better than the alternative. Pleased that our academy products played such a big part in this one.
  14. Speaking of finds, Mason's right up there too.

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