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Err, what's Manny's position?

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The games I've seen Manny Fernandes play thus far, he seems to be playing in a more defensive role like Carsley rather than attacking. I thought we got him back to support Arteta in attack while Carsley hangs back but there are times when we push forward, he seems to be playing a bit too deep for my liking. Is this part of DM's instructions? Is it because DM is working him back in the game or just being cautious? Great talent/potential though!
Anj Stamos, Melbourne, Australia     Posted 04/02/2008 at 23:48:39

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Peter Pridgeon
1   Posted 05/02/2008 at 02:33:27

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Anj
In my opinion Fernandes has always been a defensive central midfielder, not quite in the sweeper style of Carsley but more of a distributor and ball winner in the mode of Roy Keane or the position that Paul Scoles has taken up at Man United now he is fit.
He played deep last season for Everton but this position allows the player to come forward with the sweeper (Carsley) as back up.
Incidentally Osman in my opinion has played his best football from this position prior to his injury.
Mick Simo
2   Posted 05/02/2008 at 08:06:32

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I think people are getting a bit confused with Fernandes and where he plays, in a traditionly 4-4-2 he would play the holding midfield player in a 4 man midfield, but people are getting confused in this 5 man midfield, no he is’nt a Carsley more of Gilberto at Arsenal, more creative and can switch to the role of attacking midfielder when needed, this 5 in the middle is relativly new to the English game, we always played 4 in the middle, one attacking and on to hold, now we have diamond, christmas trees and hole players I prefer the 4-4-2, more attacking set up
David Flanagan
3   Posted 05/02/2008 at 09:52:12

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Fernandes is a typical european midfielder.He sits deep but rarely tackles but likes to accept the ball and dictate play from the back.He does get forward and will do so even more when his fitness allows it.Against Blackburn on sat it was noticeable how many times he got into their box compared to the previous 2 games..
Allan Hobbs
4   Posted 05/02/2008 at 10:03:56

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Manny is a defensive midfielder who can break forward and make defence splitting passes as well. His job is primarily to break up play; he’s alot like Makalele and has been described as such in many quarters in recent years - high praise in my opinion.

The guys class and players like him are few & far between; we should all feel extremely pleased he’s back at Everton.
Paul OHanlon
5   Posted 05/02/2008 at 11:19:10

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’The Special One’ once described a young Manny as similar to Claude Makele...but more talented at his age!

I think, given time and fitness, he’ll be the box to box midfielder we’ve been looking for.
Connor Rohrer
6   Posted 05/02/2008 at 11:46:30

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Its hard to say. In his first spell last season he played more attacking. Not very attacking but alot further up than he is playing now. Now he seems to be sitting deep and starting our attacking moves.

I dont actually mind this personally. Carsley never looks for the ball off the back four therefore we do tend to go long. With Manny there atleast we have someone who can take it off them and dictate or get the likes of Arteta and Pienaar into more dangerous areas.

It could be down to fitness. If you’re not fit which he isn’t your not really going to bomb up and down the pitch time and time again. I dont think he’s box to box personally or a defensive midfielder. He could be a deep lying play maker or even just a central midfielder.
Joe Rourke
7   Posted 05/02/2008 at 12:10:10

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Lads yer all wrong!!! and I can quote the man himself from his presentation and interview of Manuel Fernandes - 27/08/2007, CF Valencia offical website;

¿A quién te pareces?

?A Baraja, soy un futbolista de contención que le gusta atacar?.

Translated he views himself as similar to Ruben Baraja the old Valencia playmaker, an attacker...he didn’t equate himself to Abelda the defensive midfielder...

Look he’s a talented guy, and he knows it, who needs a good guiding figure to tell him what to do to really make his talent impact...aka Ferguson with Roy Keane...unfortunately he has his Mr. 15 % in his ear instead...I think this is a very big problem...
Clive Thomas
8   Posted 05/02/2008 at 12:22:26

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He plays offside or plays the thief inside left of the wrist watch, I am watching you son
Dave Hersham
9   Posted 05/02/2008 at 12:26:28

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He is a central midfielder who can play pass, score and even takes a mean free kick end of story, what was peter reid and Bracwell, a midfield paring, donr remember them being described as holding/defensive, just excellent ball winners and leaders who could win a ball, break from the middle and pick a great pass out.
phil martin
10   Posted 05/02/2008 at 14:41:58

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I think he plays quite similar to how Xabi Alonso plays (when he gets a game) for the RS. Not a defensive midfielder nor someone who plays off the front two. He gets the ball and passes. With a real box to box player like Appiah alongside -someone who can drive play forward. I think we could have one of the best centre midfield pairings in the premiership.
Because he isnt a Scholes type player it means we can have two wide attacking players without losing thet balance in midfield,
Morris Ronson
11   Posted 05/02/2008 at 15:47:22

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Connor you might be on to something when you said ’Carsley never looks for the ball off the back four therefore we do tend to go long’. I don’t think the defence are confident enough in Cars ability to either run with the ball under control or pass it to anyone that is more than 15 feet away(without hoofing it). Therefore I think that makes Carsley a true defensive midfielder and not a affective central midfielderwhich I believe fernandes to be.
Joel G
12   Posted 05/02/2008 at 16:31:18

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stevie g is a poor man’s manny
Steve Roberts
13   Posted 05/02/2008 at 16:41:26

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Is anyone else wondering what the fuck Clive Thomas is on about?
Jay Campbell
14   Posted 05/02/2008 at 16:50:04

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His place is in the starting XI end ov.
Connor Rohrer
15   Posted 05/02/2008 at 16:51:46

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Morris, Carsley has never looked for the ball and never will do. If the centre half passes to him to take the pressure of them he passes it straight back. His passing really just consists of sideways and backwards. He does a job in a 5 man midfield because others can do his ball work for him and he can concentrate on the defensive side of the game.

This is why we need a new defensive midfielder. Carsley is a useful player to have but he’s one dimensional. A modern day defensive midfielder needs to be able to take the ball of the back four and start attacks. This is probably the reason why Fernandes is playing deeper so that he can do this.
Kenny Jones
16   Posted 05/02/2008 at 17:41:42

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Steve its a piss take, Fernandes nicked for having a watch off and Clive Thomas well if you dont know him your not an Evertonian mate, disallowed goal 1977, Bryarn Hamilton, shite, semi final, maine Road
Mike Allison
17   Posted 05/02/2008 at 20:56:19

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Manuel Fernandes is a defensive midfielder in the style of Claude Makalele. Our problem in this country is that we equate that position with being purely negative and expect players of limited talent to play it. However, when the player has the talent he is not only the shield for the back four, but also the ’quarterback’, collecting the ball from the back four and starting off attacking moves. This is what Fernandes can do. These two positions (shield/quarterback) are generally considered so important in continental football that most teams have one of each and sacrifice the idea of a box to box player, which really is an English/British thing. fernandes plays both these roles at once, totally negating the need for Carsley in the side at all, and taking our first XI to, if not THE next level, certainly A next level.
Colin Malone
18   Posted 06/02/2008 at 01:44:07

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Manny is like Paul Scholes? Claud Makele?Roy Keane? Gilberto? WOW, Wonder why Benfica or Ronald Koeman got rid. Sorry folks but he,s got a long way to go to be as good as them players, I,drather have Mr reliable Carsley as our holding player than manny. I wish and hope he proves me wrong.
Alex Parr
19   Posted 06/02/2008 at 03:16:44

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I would say he is most like Pirlo the way he is playing recently, sitting at the back and hoping to get involved and dictate play from there. Pirlo has done this for Milan for a few years now. Surprised noone has mentioned him before really.
matt bone
20   Posted 06/02/2008 at 08:14:11

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Manny is not the defensive/ holding midfielder (like carsley) nor is he the attacking midfielder (like Cahill).
Why do we need to pigeon-hole players in such a way?
Manny is the continental style midfielder not so often used in the premiership who comes deep looking to take the ball from the defence and passing it on to the strikers, oftne playing slide-rule passes giving strikers a chance at goal or space to put in a cross. If we need to give him a label I guess he is a link man - ie linking defence with attack.
Ben Howard
21   Posted 06/02/2008 at 10:37:35

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Spot on Mike Allison! That’s exactly how I see his position too! In fairness he gives us so many options as he is a versatile player - which surely makes him very popular with our manager!

Also, Colin. I hear what you’re saying, and it’s a fair shout, but I truly believe that it was less to do with Manny why he failed at Benfica and Valencia and a lot more to do with Koeman. The guy had a serious problem with him and appears to have a stubborn personality that make Moyes look like Keegan!
Ian Ankers
22   Posted 06/02/2008 at 14:37:34

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Manny himself stated in an interview shortly after his arrival at Everton in January 2007 that he is first and foremost a defensive midfielder and likes to mold his game on that of Claude Makalele. However, he did also state that where possible he does also like to get forward and attack should the opportunity arise. Based on that I would say he neither a defensive or attacking midfielder...he’s a bit of both. Claude Makalele though???Or did he mean Gareth Farrelly? time will tell I suppose!
colin malone
23   Posted 06/02/2008 at 14:21:34

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All the fan mail i,ve read is the need for a box to box center mid player and we may have him at the club ie Arteta, Piennar, Osman, Kissock. I,d give Arteta a run there, more so in a five man midfield. i,ve watched Manny last time he was here and now and what i see is a ferrari with a 1100 engine.
Joe Rourke
24   Posted 06/02/2008 at 15:23:16

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Colin

re; ’ the Ferrari with the 1100 engine’ and ’Roy Keane’.

I mentioned Roy Keane and Alex Ferguson earlier... I didn’t mean that Manny is like Roy Keane exactly as a player - just that Keane was a goal-scoring box to box midfielder at forest and Ferguson molded him into game controlling midfield general that he became...Ferguson focused his talents to where they could be used best - he knew he could find other players to score the goals and create openings so he kept Keane playing where he was most potent...I do see your analogy about the ferrari and it’s inadequte engine but maybe this is because Manny is trying to do everything in midfield - shooting, tackling, ball holding, creating - and he is getting tired and frustrated. Maybe a more focused role would be appropriate?

Manny is no defensive midfielder...he’s not much more defensive than Gravesen was...Real Madrid bought Gravesen on the basis that he played in midfield and had the image of a tough tackler - but he was closer to Zidane than Makele in his role...
colin malone
25   Posted 06/02/2008 at 16:21:26

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Joe, if he,s a defensive midfielder then moyes has got to make a choice, Manny or Carsley. Sorry but theirs no room for the two. No wonder Cahill is going through a baron spell, we need support when going forward, Osman was doing it when he played in the center mid position but now theirs a big gap.
Mike Allison
26   Posted 06/02/2008 at 19:50:51

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Joe, you can’t seriously be comparing Manny’s defensive capabilities to Gravesen’s?

Fernandes has the ability to read where the ball is going to come loose, he knows how to get his body in between the player in possession and the ball. He’s got all the attributes of a defensive midfielder. Gravesen never had a clue, and preferred chasing, harrying and tackling (ie looking busy). A good defender never looks busy because he doesn’t need to, he’s already there and he’s already read the play. A good defender rarely tackles because to need to tackle is to have done something wrong in the first place. This is what Fernandes (similar to Makalele) is good at when the opposition have the ball.

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