crackerjack

Well-known member
Incidentally, how often did Sven pick a line-up for an important game featuring players from outside of the big four, with Spurs and Newcastle as back up?*

I know many of the changes were forced on McLaren, but these two games featured starting roles for Villa, City & Wigan, plus two Everton subs.

*Not a trick question - I don't know the answer.
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
Man I hate rugby....er, anyway
"I do think McLaren showed some courage to re-engage a national joke because he thought he'd team up well with Owen. The easy (Sven) option would've been Johnson or (god'elp us) Smith."
True. When Heskey was recalled I was certainly one of those who laughed.

"Again, credit McLaren with sporting his resurgence under O'Neill rather than opting for big money Carrick or old warhorse P Neville, as I'm sure Sven would've done."
I agree with you here as well. There has been a common problem of obedience or lack of imagination from the England managers of recent years in that they only seem to look at big money players or those at big clubs. McClaren and Sven have both been guilty of this but maybe this is the begining of a change. I hated it when Crouch suddenly getting called up as soon as he moved to Liverpool, had he magically become a better by moving house? At the same time as he was playing and not scoring Bent was banging in everything and being ignored, presumably because he was at a smaller club. For me, if you're scoring twenty goals for a team that gets relegated that ought to be a plus point. I could probably get a few if I played upfront for United (this hypothesis is admittedly unlikely to be put to the test) but getting loads of goals when the rest of the team is rubbish is a real achievement.
 

redcrescent

Well-known member
I don't think that clubs have done themselves any favours with prices. If they lowered the admission I think that gates might rise again.
I think the German Bundesliga is a great example of how it should be done. Affordable tickets and rising attendance figures pretty much across the board. Man U might have more people at home games than top-ranked Borussia Dortmund, but a modest club like FC Nürnberg has a higher average attendance than Chelsea.

Well, I guess what I'm saying is that he keeps doing the same thing against different teams so one day he is going to play the team who is vulnerable to it. I would see it as genius if he varied his strike force to find the weakness of each team but that's not what he's been doing.
I get you, but it's not like other coaches don't watch England games and have McClaren's tactics booklet all figured out within minutes. If your repertoire is limited to 'long ball to the big man' (which only works if you have someone with Owen's finishing skills to capitalize on a loose ball) and 4-5-1 or 4-4-2, I'm afraid it won't get you very far - a team with a halfway disciplined defense will murder you on the break. I really think the holding midfielder option should be explored in depth because England certainly has the men for it and the shaky defense (though it makes for amusing watching, it must be said) would be strengthened. Players like Hargreaves and (let's wait and see) Barry can be trusted to make a good first pass back down the field.

To be fair to McC, some key men have been out injured at crucial moments, but a great team is characterized by the interchangeabilty of its parts without compromise of its structure.

And when, when I wonder will England find a quality keeper?

(Meanwhile, the England women's team draw world champions Germany 0:0 and are well en route to the World Cup final)

Where are you from as a matter of interest Redcrescent?
My dad is Austrian, my mum is Spanish and I live in football-mad Mexico. You?
 

redcrescent

Well-known member
There has been a common problem of obedience or lack of imagination from the England managers of recent years in that they only seem to look at big money players or those at big clubs. McClaren and Sven have both been guilty of this but maybe this is the begining of a change. I hated it when Crouch suddenly getting called up as soon as he moved to Liverpool, had he magically become a better by moving house? At the same time as he was playing and not scoring Bent was banging in everything and being ignored, presumably because he was at a smaller club. For me, if you're scoring twenty goals for a team that gets relegated that ought to be a plus point. I could probably get a few if I played upfront for United (this hypothesis is admittedly unlikely to be put to the test) but getting loads of goals when the rest of the team is rubbish is a real achievement.
So OTM. Why is this really - coaches caving in to pressure from the tabloids?

For a look at how it could (and should IMHO) be done, check Dunga's selections for the Brazil squad lately, including the one that thrashed a star-studded Argentina side at the Copa America final 3:0.
 

crackerjack

Well-known member
So OTM. Why is this really - coaches caving in to pressure from the tabloids?

For a look at how it could (and should IMHO) be done, check Dunga's selections for the Brazil squad lately, including the one that thrashed a star-studded Argentina side at the Copa America final 3:0.
There are legit concerns that the Champions League is where it's at, and that you need testing against the best at club level and you won't get that playing for Man City (much as I love him, I'd be nervous about an England team feat Micah Richards against the likes of Kaka or Riquelme just now). But it's also partly a product of celeb culture, to some extent, and perhaps managerial cowardice - you don't look so stupid if your flop striker was deemed worthy of £10m by one of the best mangers in the country.

Problem with all these 'top' Champions League players is they bring that cautious culture with them. England played these games with a fair measure of freedom. On top of that, when you have to be a Top Four player to be in the England team, it breeds the complacent comfort zone attitude that has been so endemic, esp under Sven.
 

redcrescent

Well-known member
There are legit concerns that the Champions League is where it's at, and that you need testing against the best at club level and you won't get that playing for Man City (much as I love him, I'd be nervous about an England team feat Micah Richards against the likes of Kaka or Riquelme just now). But it's also partly a product of celeb culture, to some extent, and perhaps managerial cowardice - you don't look so stupid if your flop striker was deemed worthy of £10m by one of the best mangers in the country.

Problem with all these 'top' Champions League players is they bring that cautious culture with them. England played these games with a fair measure of freedom. On top of that, when you have to be a Top Four player to be in the England team, it breeds the complacent comfort zone attitude that has been so endemic, esp under Sven.
Some good points here. I realize that the Champions League is tremendously lucrative, a great stage and certainly a priority for many (Rafa Benítez, step forward) but are there enough English players getting regular Champions League action to make up a national squad? Somewhere along the line you must be reasonable and choose players on form, and, as IdleRich says, leaving out someone like Darren Bent who does not have the quality of service other strikers have and still performs is criminal negligence.

I mean, if your job is to nominate an England squad on the basis of names only, any 8 year old can do that in a flash. And if the pressure on an England coach to get things right is strong, imagine what the Brazil coach must feel each time he announces the team sheet. And here's Dunga picking young players that ply their trade in the Russian and Ukranian leagues, simply because he feels thay are going to do the best job. Sure, CSKA Moscow and Shakhtar Donetsk might play in the Champions League qualifying stages some years, but most of their league matches are not even Championship level.
I think that if a coach has a consistent policy of naming only the hungriest and most in-form players, regardless of names, hierarchy, history and the media, his success will speak for itself and he will be vindicated.
 

jenks

thread death
I'm surprised that my club, Spurs, haven't been mentioned in all of this. It seems to me that the main motivation for the board to behave as shabbily as they have to Jol is that they want the club to be top 4 and thus make them much more attractive in the market come the summer, by that time they will ahve secured planning permission to turn the ground by 90 degrees and expand.

Quite why they then let Jol spend £40+million and then not give him a chance to perform, i dunno.

As to England - both opponents were a bit poor but plastic pitch and all that may well make a difference in Russia. I think Barry was the real pick over the two games - the crowd in the pub shouted 'You're so shit, we can bring Neville on'. Still cannot see what Joe Cole really brings to the mix - step overs that never actually convince, profligate in the pass and only redeemed by a flash goal every now and then. Owen looks good but was unmarked for both goals on Wednesday.

The thing is though is that in the past we would ahve choked but at least we held it together and got the results - McLaren still looks like the coach driver rather than the coach and i ahve no faith in him bringing the best out of players like Rooney, Gerrard and Lampard. SWP needs to go away and remember how to cross the ball and we need to hope Lennon comes back fit and fast to give us genuine width.

BTW - shouldn't this be two different threads?
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
"I get you, but it's not like other coaches don't watch England games and have McClaren's tactics booklet all figured out within minutes. If your repertoire is limited to 'long ball to the big man' (which only works if you have someone with Owen's finishing skills to capitalize on a loose ball) and 4-5-1 or 4-4-2, I'm afraid it won't get you very far - a team with a halfway disciplined defense will murder you on the break."
Yeah agreed, the long ball to the big man is ok as a plan b or preferably even plan c but it shouldn't be the tactic that a team with England's players defaults to.

"My dad is Austrian, my mum is Spanish and I live in football-mad Mexico. You?"
Well, I'm English obviously. I'm not a big supporter of clubs as such but as far as it goes my allegiance is to Manchester United. To be honest I prefer playing to watching.

"So OTM. Why is this really - coaches caving in to pressure from the tabloids?"
Not sure it's that, I think it's just a complete lack of imagination.

"There are legit concerns that the Champions League is where it's at, and that you need testing against the best at club level and you won't get that playing for Man City (much as I love him, I'd be nervous about an England team feat Micah Richards against the likes of Kaka or Riquelme just now). But it's also partly a product of celeb culture, to some extent, and perhaps managerial cowardice - you don't look so stupid if your flop striker was deemed worthy of £10m by one of the best mangers in the country."
I think you have to take everything in to consideration including the quality of the opposition but I think it goes way too far to say that you can't play for England if you're not in the Champions' League. You can't be so inflexible. When Greece won the European Cup they had less players in the champions' league than any of the other sides and you might argue that they were the freshest side in the tournament. Another non-champions' league player who did well was Rooney who was with Everton at that point.

"I'm surprised that my club, Spurs, haven't been mentioned in all of this. It seems to me that the main motivation for the board to behave as shabbily as they have to Jol is that they want the club to be top 4 and thus make them much more attractive in the market come the summer, by that time they will ahve secured planning permission to turn the ground by 90 degrees and expand.
Quite why they then let Jol spend £40+million and then not give him a chance to perform, i dunno"
It's blown up right in their faces really. They've been completely exposed and left him as a dead man walking. I always think it's ridiculous to fire someone that early in the season anyway but the way they tried to go about it was particularly stupid.

"BTW - shouldn't this be two different threads?"
Yeah, sorry about that.
 

redcrescent

Well-known member
Any new nuggets of wisdom after the weekend games?

New speculation on the possible replacement of Martin Jol by Juande Ramos in the Guardian today, I just cannot see this happening to be honest. Can the Spurs board really be so dumb, and would Ramos leave a Sevilla side equipped to challenge for (and win) serious silverware again this year?

Re. different threads - "the best bits on Dissensus are derailed threads" and all that, but it'd be helpful. Anyone up for making an EPL thread and a separate one on football politics etc.?
 

crackerjack

Well-known member
Well I didn't see that coming.
Weird innit - now that it's happened, you think well of course, it was bound to, the signs were there (bit like Morrissey coming out). But I thought Jose and Roman would be the Blair and Brown of football for ages to come, locked in a relationship of mutual loathing and interdependence.

Talking of combustible relationships, you read Damned United? Now there's one for the DBC.
 

crackerjack

Well-known member
Any new nuggets of wisdom after the weekend games?

New speculation on the possible replacement of Martin Jol by Juande Ramos in the Guardian today, I just cannot see this happening to be honest. Can the Spurs board really be so dumb, and would Ramos leave a Sevilla side equipped to challenge for (and win) serious silverware again this year?

Re. different threads - "the best bits on Dissensus are derailed threads" and all that, but it'd be helpful. Anyone up for making an EPL thread and a separate one on football politics etc.?
If there's any comfort for Jol at the mo, it'll be seeing his prosepctive replacement getting stuffed 3-0 by...Arsenal.

What's EPL?
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
"Talking of combustible relationships, you read Damned United? Now there's one for the DBC."
Funny, I was looking at that in a shop just yesterday. Often fancied it but I just don't know when I will find time to read it.

"If there's any comfort for Jol at the mo, it'll be seeing his prosepctive replacement getting stuffed 3-0 by...Arsenal."
Don't think that will comfort Jol, it should be good practice for managing Spurs.
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
"If there's any comfort for Jol at the mo, it'll be seeing his prosepctive replacement getting stuffed 3-0 by...Arsenal."
How about Mourinho for Spurs? That would be a coup if they could pull it off, might win over fans who don't like the way Jol has been treated and if they are really offering "head-spinning money" it could be attractive to the Special One.

"Austerlitz it ain't. One long evening should be enough."
OK, I'll give it a go.
 

redcrescent

Well-known member
If there's any comfort for Jol at the mo, it'll be seeing his prosepctive replacement getting stuffed 3-0 by...Arsenal.
No shame in that, I think, it was bad luck for Sevilla to have had their Champions League opener away to Arsenal. I think they'll catch on quickly and should make it through the group phase.

What's EPL?
English Premier League.

Chelsea management outdo the Spurs board in stupidity.
If Jol must go, how about Luis Felipe Scolari for Spurs, seeing as Mourinho will probably take over Portugal?
 

redcrescent

Well-known member
Actually now gutted England beat Russia last week. There's two decent managers we could go for....
Three, actually. If England's victory keeps Russia from qualifying for Euro 2008, Guus Hiddink should also be looking for a new job in a few months' time. But then it might be too late to replace McClaren, and I'm sure Abramovich is already pulling strings to get Hiddink.

Silly but fun to speculate who's going to end up sitting where in this endless game of musical chairs!
 

vimothy

yurp
Wenger for the England job - I reckon he'll be leaving Arsenal in the next couple of years...

Bad luck Chelsea, though - probably the most stupid, if predictable, sacking we'll see this season.

Wonder what odds you'd have got for Jose being the first manager to go. Damn.
 

crackerjack

Well-known member
Top