Ronald Koeman has expressed his satisfaction with the recent performances of Ross Barkley who underscored his improvement with an influential display at Crystal Palace on Saturday.
The 23-year-old's form has been mercurial season so far under Koeman who has not shied away from describing publicly where he needs to improve his game. As Everton's form has picked up noticeably over the past six weeks, however, so has that of Barkley.
After laying on two goals in the 4-0 hammering of Manchester City the Sunday before, he ran the Blues' midfield for much of the game at Selhurst Park and Koeman likes what he is seeing now in terms of Barkley's work in the final third of the field.
“We speak a lot with Ross about what we need in the team from his qualities,” the Dutchman said. “And we know if you are a midfield player you need to run, you need to work, you need to defend.
“Against Crystal Palace he was really that player in the midfield. He was always free, he had good control of the ball, he had a good shot in the first half, a good assist for scoring goals, and that's what we need.
“We need [that from] Romelu as well, from Kevin [Mirallas], from Ross, from Mola when he came in.
“And that's what we need. We don't need Ross to get the ball from a defender, turn, and play a five-yard pass. No, we need him in the final part of attacking and he is changing in that and that's what we like.”
Reader Comments (96)
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1 Posted 23/01/2017 at 23:38:45
2 Posted 23/01/2017 at 00:00:36
Music to my ears.
3 Posted 24/01/2017 at 00:28:54
4 Posted 24/01/2017 at 00:29:17
5 Posted 24/01/2017 at 00:41:57
I wonder was Koeman behind any delay in this over recent months. We haven't heard anything, any news of what might be holding it up. Unusual in this day and age, with the relatively short duration remaining and the quality of player.
All we did hear was the manager calling it "A matter for later" or similar words, some weeks ago.
6 Posted 24/01/2017 at 02:05:41
I've always thought his double leg break as a teenager probably knocked him back at least a year or so mentally as well as physically in the game.
Here's to a future captain!
7 Posted 24/01/2017 at 02:08:36
8 Posted 24/01/2017 at 02:30:14
9 Posted 24/01/2017 at 04:55:38
He is still misplacing the odd pass, but I can accept that when someone is giving 110% effort.
I suspect that Koeman has played a blinder where Barkley is concerned. He appeared to be over indulged by Martinez - I think Martinez said at one point that Barkley could be the best player England has ever produced! Koeman has given him some tough love, and he is currently looking a much better player for it. Having Davies in the team appears to have helped Ross also. Seeing the effort Davies puts in has been contagious.
10 Posted 24/01/2017 at 06:50:03
He could be on his way to being the player we all thought he would be. He's visibly gaining confidence with every match he plays.
Long may it continue... at Everton.
11 Posted 24/01/2017 at 07:24:22
People say he's playing deeper now, he's not it's just that he's closer to teammates due to shift in formation. Koeman has even said it there himself, he's no good to you getting the ball 10 yards off his own 18-yard box.
It's bringing out the best in all our attacking players now. Personally I think it's shame we didn't see Geri given a go in this system too!
12 Posted 24/01/2017 at 08:11:28
We should enjoy this boy's talents whilst we can, as I still believe he's destined for great things.
13 Posted 24/01/2017 at 08:24:17
14 Posted 24/01/2017 at 09:29:24
15 Posted 24/01/2017 at 09:38:13
I'm sure that Ronald will have noticed this and will have a word.
16 Posted 24/01/2017 at 09:45:35
Good teams keep there best players, many top prem sides would give Ross a home, so clearly his contract should be sorted out asap.
Build our future around Ross, tell players to find Ross on the pitch at all cost, make him dictate play, force him to be the player his potential clearly allows him to be.
And another thing, I really hope Southgate doesn't call him up to be on the bench, he's better than that and deserves more.
17 Posted 24/01/2017 at 09:54:44
18 Posted 24/01/2017 at 09:56:51
No coincidence to me since Davies has been given more game time, the team as a whole look better. The boy's energy levels are amazing.
19 Posted 24/01/2017 at 09:57:07
As my Step-Dad said yesterday "We have a blue heart in the middle of the park in Davies and Barkley"
20 Posted 24/01/2017 at 09:59:23
The TV cameras did linger on Lukaku staring absolute daggers at young Davies when he failed to make a simple cross from the edge of the area on one counter attack.
Personally I am pleased to see Barkley learning how to hurt teams rather than start a re-cycling process that leaves the ball back with Jagielka who can only lump it forward.
21 Posted 24/01/2017 at 10:14:40
22 Posted 24/01/2017 at 10:24:19
23 Posted 24/01/2017 at 10:26:31
24 Posted 24/01/2017 at 10:26:38
26 Posted 24/01/2017 at 10:28:33
The good news is that it looks like this formation and approach is the one to get the best out of him. He has players behind him doing alot of the defensive work and then players ahead and on the wing. Essentially when he gets the ball he has more attacking options and less defensive responsibility which is what every playmaker requires in an ideal world.
Koeman seems happy for him to go direct and that also suits his game. Lets hope it continues.
27 Posted 24/01/2017 at 10:36:03
28 Posted 24/01/2017 at 10:39:58
He is leaner and fitter than ever before. He looks like a former super middleweight who has shed 8 lbs and become a middleweight. He has clearly put in the work and deserves the plaudits. Long may it continue.
29 Posted 24/01/2017 at 11:34:27
30 Posted 24/01/2017 at 11:57:56
I was one on here that called for Ross to be shown the door, but I will be more than delighted to eat my words and my hat if Ross continues to show us the skill, heart and brilliance that we all know that he has got in abundance.
31 Posted 24/01/2017 at 11:59:12
32 Posted 24/01/2017 at 12:12:39
Anyway, I don't want to moan too much, it's great to see Ross playing in the final third, drifting past opposition players with ease and getting into goal scoring positions.
He looks thinner than he did earlier in the season, and certainly looks to be lasting the games very much better despite making more and better runs with and without the ball.
33 Posted 24/01/2017 at 12:19:26
That said, I'm genuinely pleased that Ross is just now playing better but I admit I've given up on him becoming a legend. It just not between his ears to achieve those heights in my opinion. That doesn't mean he's unworthy, far from it in fact, but as yet he's way below any of the Holy Trinity, any of the mid '80s midfield including Kevin Richardson, and way behind Arteta , Pienaar, Cahill or even Osman. All of the last four scored and delivered more goals than Ross does and all of them were in a different league when it came to playing without the ball.
I hope he proves me wrong but if I was him I'd be looking round Finch Farm at what a proper midfield player should be doing, and by that I don't mean just growing your hair long and playing with your socks rolled down Ross!
34 Posted 24/01/2017 at 12:20:08
I think you can also see the effect that Koeman has had on McCarthy he now seems to have bought into the high pressing tempo that Koeman wants.
35 Posted 24/01/2017 at 12:37:11
It's not all down to him now, the creativity can be shared.
I will gladly eat humble pie if he continues to play like he has of late, as I for one have been less than patient with our Ross.
36 Posted 24/01/2017 at 13:23:23
Let's just hope the lad can remember the advice for more than a week or two this time round!
37 Posted 24/01/2017 at 13:48:47
Barkley has got better since Davies got in the side because he has a midfielder who runs on from him - box to box. He doesn't have 1 or 2 static options to try and free up.
38 Posted 24/01/2017 at 13:59:01
39 Posted 24/01/2017 at 14:02:15
But I don't think we should underestimate that way his confidence really slumped when he was dumped from the England set-up. It wasn't wholly unexpected or undeserved, but he provides something that England lack in midfield and I hope that will be understood.
40 Posted 24/01/2017 at 14:05:15
But Ross isn't Hibbo. He isn't us. I truly believe he gives it his all, but that doesn't mean he has to charge around like a headless chicken á la Gravesen. Tommy came good and got us 4th single-handed when suddenly Moyes put him out of harm's way of the midfield, had Carlsey doing the running for him, and told Tommy to concentrate on the attacks. After 4 years constantly arguing with my mate that Gravesen was a very good player, and better than Scott Gemmil (such was my friend's opinion of him). I was delighted when Gravesen finally showed what he could do, even if it was just for those 6 glorious months.
For me Ross is similar. He's got such technique, vision, passing, shooting, dribbling ... He's got the lot for me. And it is up to the manager to get it out of him. Where a player is struggling because of a lack of confidence, or something else that is in his head, then that is for the manager to solve, that is what he gets paid £6m a year for.
Ross got overlooked by Moyes, and what fleeting glimpses we did see of him, were often as a winger! Martinez had him playing wonderfully well in that first full season when he was at the heart of everything. Then the second season and last season may have been harder for Ross, but the facts do not lie, only Alli has scored more or created more over the last 12 months, as an English midfielder. Our problem as Evertonians, is we expect too much. We expect him to be 100% every game and to be on it.
We need to let him make mistakes. Let's not get on his back the next time his form goes. If he makes a bad pass then let's accept that at least he is trying to make things happen.
I remember being annoyed with an aging Sheedy one match, hitting these long passes to no one in particular. People were getting on his back, only for my dad to say to me, if Sheedy had hit the same ball 5 years ago, it would have been a goal, it's not his fault the rest of the team are not good enough to see it.
41 Posted 24/01/2017 at 14:49:28
The concern was his consistency and closing down when not in possession.
I still think he has some way to go before realising his potential but happy to see a huge improvement the last couple of games.
42 Posted 24/01/2017 at 15:09:27
43 Posted 24/01/2017 at 15:31:16
44 Posted 24/01/2017 at 15:33:51
45 Posted 24/01/2017 at 15:38:38
Don't know about that.
Pienaar scored 24 in his entire Everton career and Ross is already on 25.
Osman got 57 but it took him well over 400 games to do so. Arteta totalled 34 and a fair few of those were penalties.
The only one of the four to ever equal Barkley's total of 12 last season was Cahill in his first season.
46 Posted 24/01/2017 at 15:47:18
It's going to be tight in midfield with Gueye, Schneiderlin, Davies, Barry, Barkley all demanding a first team place! Not too long before he ends up on the bench I feel!
47 Posted 24/01/2017 at 15:50:14
48 Posted 24/01/2017 at 15:55:12
49 Posted 24/01/2017 at 15:56:59
Why else would a midfielder get slated for making James McCarthy passes when James McCarthy doesn't get slated for them? Its because they think he can make a 40-yard ping or a 5-man dribble.
Fans sense a player to pick on – the way the school bully knows who to approach for their dinner money. For some reason Ross is that lad... "We've got a diamond called Ross Barkley" to "I'd sell him for £15m if anyone was daft enough to pay it".
IMO the most lavishly talented "footballer" we have got. How many players in the league are genuinely two footed? Not only that how many can strike a ball as good as him or run at pace with balance and power like him.
I expect the lad to break out properly – keep him away from that England circus. He needs our media on his back as much as he needed that dinosaur Hodgson trying to vent all his jealousy on him.
I've always said it – Ross makes some of his managers jealous of him you can bet half the premier league are jealous of his talents. He's got the lot – what he hasn't got in terms of confidence is used as a means of trying to destroy him.
It reminds me of when that young model was in the jungle with a load of old has-been jealous hags. They couldn't compete with her beauty so they tried to exploit her for lack of intelligence.
50 Posted 24/01/2017 at 15:57:53
Hopefully Walsh and Koeman are bringing in players who have value in terms of bargain price, youth and the right mental strength to be winners.
51 Posted 24/01/2017 at 16:06:07
I'm not suggesting that Ross couldn't hold his place in the team, but would he benefit being further forward and more importantly would the team.
52 Posted 24/01/2017 at 16:28:50
54 Posted 24/01/2017 at 16:33:29
In this new style of play Barkley has had to adapt, it has taken longer than Koeman wanted, but he is getting there. Barkley has been helped enormously by Davies, who is on the same football wave length as Koeman. So instead of Barkley being made responsible for moving the ball foreward, he has Davies along side of him, taking the weight off his shoulders.
55 Posted 24/01/2017 at 16:46:47
I also do not think he see's enough in a game to be a play maker.IMO he is a mercurial player who tends to flatter to deceive.He has played well in three of the last four games but before that he was having a poor season.Until he has a long run of decent games I remain unconvinced.Without Lukaku and to a lesser extent Mirallas we would get few goals from our front men.Coleman and Baines have scored seven of our league goals so far this season.
56 Posted 24/01/2017 at 16:55:37
The combination of experience and youth is beginning to produce dividends and probably at the right time for Koeman who looked like he didn't know what he was doing for a while.
Every game is a tough game and even teams at the bottom can shock you such as the Swans at Anfield so Everton's win at struggling Palace was all the more deserving of credit.
Ross looked like a shadow of the player he was but Koeman's shot up the backside seems to have done the trick and with the mouth watering association alongside the likes of Gana, Lookman and Schneiderlin to come we can only hope the Blues rise to the top of the heap in the not too distant future.
57 Posted 24/01/2017 at 16:57:04
I honestly despair.
Try this simple exercise look at the number of goals and assists he has for Everton then revisit your comparison.
58 Posted 24/01/2017 at 17:03:05
60 Posted 24/01/2017 at 17:28:01
61 Posted 24/01/2017 at 18:23:13
Martinez is getting slagged on here but he gave Ross his chance in the first place, had faith in him publicly and stuck with him through the low patches. He may not have done much else right but he did give him more of a run than Moyes did, or would have in my opinion, had the latter continued in charge.
Barkley is benefiting from players coming in and running their hearts out both in terms of being influenced, as some have surmised, to do the same but also in terms of the space that has been filled behind him and created in front of him playmakers need willing runners and we have those now.
I think the other positive for Barkley from the inclusion of the new younger players is his relative seniority on the park. I see him get derided sometimes by (in particular) Lukaku and other strong characters when he makes mistakes. As the most junior member of the team (or certainly the midfield/attack), with his personality type, this could knock him in to his shell. When he looks around and sees players who are his junior I think he naturally grows in self-confidence and stature in his own eyes and he seems to be taking the responsibility as a result.
Whatever is happening in Barkley's mind and legs, I am delighted with it. He looked every bit capable of fulfilling Martinez's prophecy on the weekend.
62 Posted 24/01/2017 at 18:30:26
Quick feet for a big lad and the best two footer I can recall since R Charlton.
63 Posted 24/01/2017 at 18:35:19
Both of these opinions are indeed opinions. There is no evidence to support either of them. Under Martinez, Ross's form suffered amidst the team overall playing badly (an effect of Martinez, but not of the 'smoke up the arse' kind). Under Koeman, Ross's form has recovered, and very rapidly recently. It's plausible, and seemingly apparent from looking at the last few games, that this recovery in form could result directly from changes in the team, particularly the role of Davies.
Also, it is often the case that the form of players fluctuates apparently randomly, in that there is no discernible reason beyond what might be assumed.
The two assumptions referred to above seem good candidates for the classic mistake of taking an association, and assuming that that association is a cause of the effect being considered, in this case Ross's form.
64 Posted 24/01/2017 at 18:46:33
In the words of the immortal Oliver Norvell Hardy...
"Tell me that again?"
65 Posted 24/01/2017 at 18:50:42
66 Posted 24/01/2017 at 18:56:29
67 Posted 24/01/2017 at 18:56:53
If Barkley wants to stay in, this manager plans he will have to keep up and even better his current work rate. Barkley got away with murder with Martinez , it is not going to happen with Koeman. I would say that is fact and not an opinion.
Surely you can see that Barkley is working harder on the pitch? I would see that as clear evidence that Koeman's "tough love" approach, as you put it, is indeed bearing fruit.
68 Posted 24/01/2017 at 19:02:21
The first incarnation of the properly emerging Barkley was as a direct player who would get his head down and run. He was very direct his runs, with his movement, and with his passing. This Barkley would have fit in with what Koeman wanted. Especially with the enthusiasm of youth, he was chasing everything, which has been a criticism of him over the last 12 months or so. Perhaps Koeman wouldn't have liked the amount he looked to shoot, or perhaps he would.
Martinez sought to change Barkley, of that there is no doubt. Barkley changed a lot in that first 12 months. Martinez slowed him down, he made him look for a pass. He started taking a few touches, or he'd spin and turn and pass rather than spin, turn and run. He stopped shooting so often, usually mainly late in games when he was desperate.
No offence to Ross, but he doesn't strike me as the sharpest tool in the box, and perhaps it took a while for him to change into what Martinez wanted, perhaps Martinez got a hold of him at an age where it was possible to change drastically, perhaps Ross is now of an age where it is difficult to unlearn all of this?
Yes a lot of perhaps, but just some thoughts.
69 Posted 24/01/2017 at 19:06:06
I'd definitely agree that he seems fitter, leaner and sharper under Koeman's training regime, and as you say working harder. And he's more effective, no doubt because of the improved fitness (needed for the 'pressing game'), plus (which seems very likely) the team changes recently brought about, especially the presence of Davies.
But all this is just old-fashioned hard work and the team gelling better (influenced by the changes in tactics and personnel). I can't see any evidence of 'tough love' from Koeman having any effect, whatever 'tough love' is when you're talking about fully grown-up professionals. Terms like 'tough love' seem better in the realm of drama queens than professional football.
70 Posted 24/01/2017 at 19:12:12
Barkley will sign a new contract in February I think cos Koeman really likes him, and is going to make him fulfill his vast potential. Koeman doesn't waste time on players who won't be successful at the top level. COYBs
71 Posted 24/01/2017 at 19:28:08
I have no doubt that Koeman has praised Ross privately also , and giving him the confidence he needs to play well do what he does. Yes, Barkley will and should improve even more under Koeman because the manager will demand it.
As I have said before Koeman doesn't care about the name on the back of the shirt; if you are not doing the business, you will be out of favour fairly quickly.
72 Posted 24/01/2017 at 19:41:10
73 Posted 24/01/2017 at 20:18:55
The first is the change in formation which overall suits the players we have.
The second is playing youth. Footballers today are multimillionaires by 23 at 18 they are so hungry and fresh and full of energy. In Davies and Holgate we have two gems that are playing with such passion they are embarrassing more senior players into lifting their level.
The third shift has been the ability to spend decent money. To bring in two players one a kid with massive potential and the other an established Premier League performer of known quality for over £30 million is a huge shift. These players freshen up the squad and most importantly increase competition for a shirt.
I was highly critical of Koeman before the Arsenal game but credit where credit is due he has changed things around and the results are speaking for themselves and team actually looks like it is starting to gel. Let's quietly go about maintaining this progress while the pressure is off and build towards next season.
74 Posted 24/01/2017 at 20:19:23
It's up to Ross really, I've been critical of him but nothing would please me more to see this young fella become the player we all have been waiting for... time will tell.
75 Posted 24/01/2017 at 20:19:38
76 Posted 24/01/2017 at 20:27:49
If the team are going to improve Jags is the one player I'd ship out. He's been a good servant for a team languishing in mid table, but to move up he needs to move on.
I think the reason that Barkley has gotten so much stick is because everyone knows he is capable of so much more on so many levels. In the last derby he was utterly lost and I want to see him tear the Red Shite a new arsehole in the way Gerrard did to us. I really hope he keeps on improving in the way that he has, he's got a long way to go but at least it looks like the penny has dropped and he's finally moving in the right direction.
77 Posted 24/01/2017 at 20:40:35
More youth alongside him will also help him settle rather than feel the promising youngster tag amongst older colleagues.
78 Posted 24/01/2017 at 21:06:40
He seems fitter and more mobile, which may be the effect of half a season of Koeman training. He had more touches than any other Everton player against Palace. Whatever the reasons, let's hope his good form continues, and let's also hope he signs a good long contract soon.
79 Posted 24/01/2017 at 21:24:31
80 Posted 25/01/2017 at 08:35:18
81 Posted 25/01/2017 at 09:47:25
82 Posted 25/01/2017 at 12:46:24
He has ridden the storm of expectation pretty well, I think. He had a break-through season, suffered a dip in form and now appears to be answering his critics.
Long may it continue!
83 Posted 25/01/2017 at 13:13:50
We also need intelligent players who can read the game, ie, if I were to strike this ball; have I given the player at whom it's directed time to get in to the required position; can said player anticipate my intention. I think this is really lacking from Everton.
Everton in any event desperately need a striker in this transfer window, even better if they possess excellent timing and can read the game. Besides Lukaku, we do not have a striker per se (look in the dictionary!).
84 Posted 25/01/2017 at 15:25:40
Ross did pass the ball... Lukaku was just too bloody slow in getting ito the box to score!
Watch it again!!!
85 Posted 25/01/2017 at 15:42:40
Stan: "Well..I was just saying if Barkley was..a smoker and blew smoke at Martinez who then..fluctuated, then it might be plausible to have..a smoke and.."
Oliver: "You know something, that's a great idea!"
(blows horn, sings 'Fresh fiiiiish!')
86 Posted 25/01/2017 at 15:46:38
Let's agree that Ross is playing a lot better than he was a few weeks ago, getting into good positions, beating men with apparent ease. I just wish that his decision making was better sometimes.
87 Posted 25/01/2017 at 22:37:59
So many posts over the season have questioned why we need 2 defensive midfield players and I think the new formation also helps in this respect. With 2 defensive midfield players in the team Ross was isolated between Rom and Gana and Barry and therefore easy to mark and pick up. Now they have to watch for Davies making surging runs from the back as well.
My fear is as soon as Gana is back we will revert to the double defensive midfield duo and with Schneiderlin offering the same role this heaps pressure on Koeman to drop Davies. I just hope he resists this temptation because the team has offered up so much more in the last 2 games than we have done all season.
Unlike most I am not sure we will get value for money at £24M for Schneiderlin. We have witnessed how good Davies is and can become and we also have Walsh who seems to be a good prospect. With the Ross and Davies partnership and Holgate and Lookman coming through as well, things are looking up.
88 Posted 26/01/2017 at 11:19:24
89 Posted 26/01/2017 at 11:22:45
Koeman will develop Barkley into a better player without a doubt.
90 Posted 26/01/2017 at 23:03:25
Summary, assisted a near goal first game, where he came on in the last 6 minutes or so. Second game, he nearly scored a goal from behind on the volley. Third game (tonight), good strike with a header although it missed (rattled the bar), he made up for it.
Disaster (so-called anyway), 1, first goal in Premier League. Is Niasse quality, no is likely the answer at this point anyway. However, he can score, ie, finish.
91 Posted 27/01/2017 at 00:12:35
There's no doubt in my mind that he had a slump in form and confidence, combined with playing in a side which just didn't give him a platform to perform.
For me, that's where his lack of consistency comes from. He hasn't found a way to influence games when the team isn't performing so when we're poor, he'll be anonymous. That's his next step be the one who lifts the team, rather than waiting for someone else to take the lead.
92 Posted 27/01/2017 at 00:25:07
Hopefully we'll be signing one or more better players and, if so, everyone wins, but spare me the Ross-is-Magic bollocks. He isn't, but good is good enough for a place in the current squad.
93 Posted 27/01/2017 at 10:27:32
I believe there is a lot of bullshit in the football world at the moment, about this business of 'pressing'. Stemming from gegenpressing, the supposed 'philosophy' of the likes of Klopp and Pepsi Cola. What looks like fashionable packaging for what has always been done by good teams, harassing the opposition when they have the ball. It strikes me that the biggest influences are players being played to their strengths, gelling alongside other players, and football brains rather than cross country running. In this sense, there has been too much public scrutiny of Ross, about his absence of tackling, and supposed lack of thinking, about not conforming to the needs of 'pressing'.
It's quite likely that his return to form is influenced more by how the team has been organised recently, the selections (like Davies), and being fitter, than any master plan associated with a 'pressing game' beyond the increased fitness achieved so far under Koeman.
94 Posted 27/01/2017 at 10:48:31
As philosophy (!) it is meant to be the antidote to the possession philosophy of OFM and others like it would seem Guardiola, and demands high level of fitness.
I prefer the way we are currently playing and the set up, but it isn't new, just different to the last few seasons.
95 Posted 27/01/2017 at 11:04:03
I've been looking at video clips of the late 60s Everton team, particularly the 69-70 side, perhaps the best Everton team of all time. And I remember the games. There was a lot of pressing, very rapid changes of play, and the speed of the game doesn't seem much different from nowadays, for that great team. In my opinion, what made that team great was firstly, we had great players, secondly, they were played to their strengths, and thirdly, they gelled brilliantly together.
For example, if you take the midfield of Ball, Harvey and Kendall, each player on their own could dictate a game in most teams. Each could instantly pick a pass, very accurately, and they were incredibly well organised. They gelled as a trio. And the team gelled. They pressed, they were fit, but so did other teams. What set us apart was the sheer quality and gelling of those players.
I don't think anything has changed. At the moment, a midfield from Barry, Schneiderlin, Gana, Davies and Barkley could be a thing to savour (signs of that already). Not the Holy Trinity, but nevertheless based on quality of player and gelling together. The 'pressing' is on the back of those attributes, being just one component.
96 Posted 27/01/2017 at 11:19:12
So no, there was no pressing game back then, nothing comparable to now anyway.
97 Posted 27/01/2017 at 12:28:11
We see it regularly. That's been a blindingly obvious feature of football since it was invented and it is why the workshy few at the top end of our team need to pull their fingers out. They don't have to win the ball per se, but their efforts could make it more recoverable more easily and also limit the chances of conceding goals.
It's what every successful team has always done. Christ, even the laziest forward I ever saw, Allan "Sniffer" Clarke, transformed himself into a grafter who still scored prolifically so why can't our few even attempt to get in their opponents faces?
98 Posted 27/01/2017 at 12:50:25
99 Posted 27/01/2017 at 17:57:59
Maybe he needs to be more vocal and demand the ball... then he can really start to dominate games.
Should he have passed to Rom? I think a lot of attacking midfielders take those shots... Coutinho would have, a wide playing Ronaldo would have and so would have our fav winger Kanchelskis would have too! Probably Ozil would have passed the ball.
Anyway, Ross has had some magnificent moments for us and I'm sure will be back in the goals as his confidence increases.
It's no coincidence his form has gotten better now the players around him are putting a shift in and there is far better movement around him.
Here is hoping he gets right back to that direct attacking great goal scoring midfielder who teams would love to have roaming behind their strikers!