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The Swagger


blue monty

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I must admit, we looked pretty confident, but then again we didn't against Wigan or Spuds. In some ways that was a huge game for us - away from home, the new money, the hype, the euphoria of their fans... could have all gone against us. However, we did show a calmness and yes, swagger, to totally over-power them.

Was a good performance to watch, lets hope we carry that over to the Mancs on Sunday.

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We had the swagger because Citeh gave our players way too much time.

as did portsmouth, yet we struggled against wigan who fought for everything and never gave a yard. im 50/50 with the spuds game as we created enough to have comfortably won that game and limited them to one decent chance which was our mistake.

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I certainly think with Deco in there we there is so much more confidence in our passing. But as coco said, that has only come out when we have plenty of space. I think our opponents will learn quickly that shutting Deco down will seriously restrict our capacity for open play. This is where Joe, Malouda, Kalou and our other forward players need to step up a gear. We all know Joe can turn it on, but he needs to show us more consistency this year, and to be more decisive with his passing in the final third of the pitch. As for Kalou and Malouda - the both of them need to find some form - if they don't hopefully di santo and sinclair will be given a chance.

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I hope the former gets a go tonight, as IMO he was on great form pre-season, but post-Olympics hasn't had a look in. Florent has had his chances and not taken them, so why not give Kalou a go tonight to give him a chance to state his claim ahead of the Manure game?

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I certainly think with Deco in there we there is so much more confidence in our passing. But as coco said, that has only come out when we have plenty of space. I think our opponents will learn quickly that shutting Deco down will seriously restrict our capacity for open play. This is where Joe, Malouda, Kalou and our other forward players need to step up a gear. We all know Joe can turn it on, but he needs to show us more consistency this year, and to be more decisive with his passing in the final third of the pitch. As for Kalou and Malouda - the both of them need to find some form - if they don't hopefully di santo and sinclair will be given a chance.

I thnk Deco and Joe between them can tear sides apart with little one / twos - give and go's. Joe has looked a bit subdued lately - prefering simple little passes - often backwards - rather than running at a defender with the ball. Not sure if he is under instructions or just playing his way into the season? But it would be nice to see him going at defenders again a bit more.

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Im watching the replay now, and I think its a combination of things: we were careful with the ball, not wasteful, and direct with our passing. Looking at it now, those little sombreros by Deco or little diagonal one-two-three passes really caused city to back off because when they surrendered possession, they were wasting their time chasing the ball around.

I think the end result was that we played the game at our pace, moved it up slowly when we wanted, directly at other times, and City were reduced to pedestrians. I would definitely say that confidence was all over our games, and I would think thats down to Felipao and the reassurances he gives the players out there.

Better yet, we were no longer out there playing the bullies to city. It wasnt about the old direct, strength-on-strength style of play where we intimidate the opposition and beat them down. We outfoxed City and played the savvier game. I noticed too that when Anelka got knocked down, or when we missed chances there was far less animation over missed calls or chances. The players got themselves up, dusted themselves off and went back at it. That to me says they knew another chance was going to come soon enough. That, as much as anything else will improve our game if we dont get down on ourselves.

It wont be that easy everytime, but City are a good side and we made it look like a training session.

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We had the swagger because Citeh gave our players way too much time.

I think you are quite right, coco.

I think that teams that try and play football against us (Portsmouth, Man City, Bordeaux) are naturally going to give us more space and we can outplay them, and outscore them.

The trouble has come against teams who are happy to "park the bus" and settle for a draw (Wigan, Spurs).

Against those types of teams we need to grind out results - and early goals help, as it forces the opposition to change the way they play.

I guess the difference between Scolari's Chelsea and Mourinho's Chelsea is under Mourinho, we always seemed to be in the "grinding out result" mentality - only occaisionally slipping into attractive flowing football. Seems like it might be other way round now.

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Deco definitely speeds up the linkup play and adds a different variety of passing - however, he is going to have to learn to deal with intense pressure in the prem (the likes of which he never faced in La Liga or Portugal).

Anyone know how he got injured? Pulled something in the warmup?

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  • 4 weeks later...

The proof of whether it was us or boro will be clear after the Lpuddle game. We are playing well but boro were unbelievably poor in defence. Lpuddle will work twice as hard and every midfield pass will have to be earned. Then we will see whether malouda, kalou and anelka are tough enough, I have no doubts about Mikel, Frankie and Deco.

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The proof of whether it was us or boro will be clear after the Lpuddle game. We are playing well but boro were unbelievably poor in defence. Lpuddle will work twice as hard and every midfield pass will have to be earned. Then we will see whether malouda, kalou and anelka are tough enough, I have no doubts about Mikel, Frankie and Deco.

I think your doubt's were warrented Ozboy!

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