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Season 2011-12
The Mail Bag

Enough alehouse football

 13 Comments: First  |  Last

After watching Everton?s performances this year and comparing with what I just watched with supposedly a ?poor? Arsenal team and an attacking orientated Spurs then I have to say Arteta made the right call, totally.

We truthfully are a poor team, capable of improving our performances only by the ?Dogs of War? philosophy ? if you can't match them with football then harry, chase, kick the living daylights out of them and we?ll call it passion for want of a better term.

Just where is our playmaker, our controller, our orchestrater? Well, we haven?t got one; he?s just gone to Arsenal. There is no way either Rodwell, Fellaini, or Osman can control the tempo, and please don?t mention the 17-year-old Barkley can do it. We have no footballers in the team.

I fear the rest of the season will be one of the long ball to Cahill and whoever else plays with him up there; Saha, Vellios, Stracqualursi, or even Anichebe when he?s back, and we pick up the scraps and hope for set plays. It really does beg the question where the hell are we going as a club? ? Financially broken, alehouse-type football. It will lead to a decimation of the squad when the likes of Baines, Fellaini, Rodwell and even Barkley decide enough is enough and move, à la Pienaar & Arteta, to better teams.

Can anyone really see a brighter future!?!

Mike Oates, South Coast     Posted 02/10/2011 at 17:42:41

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Aidy Dews
1   Posted 02/10/2011 at 18:07:50

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For me, Moyes isnt brave enough to throw the likes of Drenthe, Barkley and Gueye into midfield who would had pace, energy and enthusiasm to the midfield, instead he'll stick with his favourites like Cahill, Ossie, Neville and Heitinga.

Out of them there's only Osman who's technically any good but is slow and lightweight. Cahill for me, doesnt play football very well, technically he's not any good and can only play the safe stuff, square, simple 5 yard passes.

Neville isnt a midfielder but can do a good job of spoiling but we want to see ball players with movement in there and he lacks in both. Heitinga is best at CB and is very comfortable at playing out from the back, long and short and for me, sooner rather than later, should be given a chance at the back.

Moyesy weeks ago said he would have to build a new team out of the players and youngsters at his disposal so why doesnt he be bold and brave and start playing a few of em?.

For me, i would start using Coleman at RB and have him and Baines offering an attacking outlet from the FB's positions. Deep in midfield i would have Felli and Rodwell paired up doing the "dirty work" shall we say, and then i'd have the likes of Drenthe wide left, Barkley or Ossie central and Gueye wide right.

With players in like Drenthe, Gueye and Barkley, we'd have movement, pace, energy and a fluency i reckon that would help our passing game, and add to that either Saha, Vellios or Stracqualursi uptop, preferably Vellios for me as im not fussed on Saha no more and i havent seen enough of Stracq, and i think we'd have the makings of a decent team.

But Moyes wont be as brave and will stick it out with the likes of ya Cahill's and Neville's which will see our play suffer and be slow and we'll end up going route one as always as we have no pace or energy, or technically sound footballers in the attacking third of the pitch.
Alan Clarke
2   Posted 02/10/2011 at 18:54:11

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After yesterday and the obviously corrupt ref, I couldn't give a shit about getting relegated. What kind of competition is it if the ref decides games for you? So I'd rather see us attack and try to win games the right way. I'm sick of us scrapping for points and the first aim of every season being to stay up.

We're dining at the top table and the food tastes like shit. Lets just have a go and have some fun. We're not part of the Premier League anyway so what's the worst that can happen?
Ryan Holroyd
3   Posted 02/10/2011 at 19:05:34

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We've sold our best two attacking players from midfield.

It's no wonder we're not looking as 'pretty' as last year.

It's not rocket science.

You sell your best players then you're going to struggle.

Blame Bill Kenwright. Afterall he's the one looking for 'investment'.

What happened to the three buyers interested in EFC before the Villa game?
Gareth Hughes
4   Posted 02/10/2011 at 19:21:08

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I would welcome suggestions as to where we will be after the next few games which involve Fulham away where we have a truly awful record (and they scored 6 today against a team who beat us), Chelsea twice who battered Bolton today, Newcastle away who are top 4 and oh yes, Man Utd, enough said. I think the situation is only going to get worse and the bottom 3 beckons. Anyone thinking otherwise is ignoring the harsh reality. At least it will put the pressure back on Kenwright
Daniel Hutchinson
5   Posted 03/10/2011 at 03:56:22

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Arteta? He has been shit for 2 years, get over it! £10 mil for a player that I would have not picked in my first 11, I am very happy he has gone.
Eugene Ruane
6   Posted 03/10/2011 at 08:17:45

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Mike, I generally agree with your concern re playmaker, but not 100% with you on your comment re Barkley.

Not long after Rooney, got into the side (er... ours), I remember him cutting in from the wing, into a central position. As opposition players tried to get the ball off him, he managed to keep hold of it while waiting for runs to be made, allowing him to play the ball through. From our (elevated) position, we could see where a couple of runs should have been made (coz it's a little easier from up high) and Rooney certainly could. However, those around him couldn't and Rooney stood there fuming and pointing at where the runs could have and should have been made.

I remember later thinking Rooney knows more at 16 than Unsworth at 34 (or whatever 'Rhino' was by then). It wasn't JUST 'ability on the ball', he read the game better.

My point? I would like to see Barkley given more 'responsibility'. No I DON'T think he's another Rooney, but I think he IS 'a footballer'. I think he has a better football brain NOW than Neville. I think his shooting, passing, strength and speed are better too.

Of COURSE there are a million reasons why this is a bad idea and yes it IS born out of desperation, but I'm now beyond giving a fuck. Without SOMEONE in the middle who can actually pick a pass, we are, in the words of Private Frazer...
Andrew Laird
7   Posted 03/10/2011 at 08:54:47

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Barkley made 1 mistake for a penalty at Blackburn = not been seen since.

Jagielka has made at least 1 mistake in EVERY game this season leading directly to opposition goals/ chances = captain.

John Ford
8   Posted 03/10/2011 at 08:52:50

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Ryan is correct. You keep selling your best players so what do you expect.

Our chickens are coming home to roost. In a way im glad. We can talk all we like about tactics and use of players but I don't believe any manager can operate season after season like this. We just don't have sufficient quality on the team. Mid-table mediocrity beckons. I've completely written this season off other than to hope Kenwright gets a clear message.

If Moyes does his stuff again and we end up between sixth and eighth, it may actually now be counter productive. It allows Kenwright to continue to paddle water. He can then just retain the status quo under the illusion that all is well.

Much as I want us to finish as high as possible, Moyes can't carry on papering over the cracks. His style may be cautious but he gets results. This season the priority is to send a message to Kenwright.

Moyes's success has in part been covering up our deficiencies. They are greater than ever now. Time for a bit of reality.
Jimmi James
9   Posted 03/10/2011 at 10:36:17

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We have to sell our best players to survive as a business so until money comes to the club that will always be the case, we have to admit like someone else said we are not a prem club at the moment.
its not football we are playing its just damage limitation, yes the sending off wrecked the game and we were doing well at the time but who knows what would have happened?.
John Ford asks for reality, I agree but the reality just could be relegation, god how this hurts, does anyone realise there were tickets still available just before kick off on sat, thats a bad situation
Danny Biddle
10   Posted 03/10/2011 at 10:43:35

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Just where is our playmaker, our controller, our orchestrater?

Where is the money to buy one?
Damien McKay
11   Posted 03/10/2011 at 12:45:56

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Andrew Laird #7 i thought I was the only one who thought Jags was utter shite and has been for some time now. Made two big mistakes in the derby. I think he should be dropped and he's deffo not a captain.

Give Cahill the armband and give Heitinga a go with distin. Would like to see us start having a go and attack but that wont happen under steady eddie.
John Barnes
12   Posted 03/10/2011 at 15:34:40

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Moyes lack of imagination in team selection is going to drive us down and him out of a job. It's all well and good playing the percentages, and it has served him well, in the past, but surely he has to see that it isnt working for him now. Surely, surely he can see the need for fresh faces, a different approach.

How many of you think, even with such a small squad that Moyes picks the best players, either on form or ability? Or do you think that the way he sets up; 4-5-1 or 4-6-0 is the best percentage over the course of THIS season?

Laurie Hartley
13   Posted 03/10/2011 at 15:46:09

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I think David Moyes is going to have to take a chance on the younger players at some point this season. I would give Fellaini the armband and this would be the team I'd have him captain of:

Coleman, Heitinga, Distin, Baines
Barkley, Fellaini, Rodwell, Drenthe
Vellios, Saha.

Saha playing behind Vellios.

It's got to happen sooner or later. I'd do it against United. They are dodgy at the back.

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