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Yobo : Jags : Lescott

Comments (42)

Interesting to note that no Mail re the dropping of Jags for the Derby game. It had to come to a head sometime but if I was Jags I'd feel a little aggrieved.

It does beg the question - What is our best centre-half pairing? I think that Baines must be a must for the left-back berth, which means Lescott is back and is a must for the left-central position. The guy hasn't put a foot wrong for 2 years and is quite rightly being acknowledged at international level.

This leaves the right central position between Jags and Yobo. Up to the end of last season I would say Yobo was always a cert for it, he had the pace to counter any fast opposing forward and he didnt really have any competition for the place. We all know he's not the greatest of headers and more than anyone is liable to the odd costly mistake.

This season Jags after a jittery start has become a crowd favourite. Putting him in centre midfield was a bit too quick for my liking and I suspect his. He finally got his chance at centre-back late in 2007 and has probably been our best player over the last 4 months, and during that time has snuffed out some of the Premier League's leading marksman.

Both Yobo and Jags are woeful in the passing department, often reverting to the long inaccurate punt upfield. Though that said I would rather play Jags with Lescott for a number of reasons.

He makes less mistakes than Yobo, probably is as fast as him, a better man-marker and I believe he is a better communicator. Lescott is a quiet lad, as is Yobo and someone in that role needs to dictate/control the back four. One might argue Neville does it at right-back but I think the central role is more suited to the communicator.

Therfore for me Neville, Jags, Lescott, Baines - but its great to have Yobo as back-up.
Mike Oates, South Coast     Posted 08/04/2008 at 10:41:32

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Kevin Fowkes
1   Posted 08/04/2008 at 10:57:53

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Why has Moyes never considered this for a back four?

Jags Yobo Lescott Baines

Tony Hawkins
2   Posted 08/04/2008 at 13:15:12

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Moyes has tried Jags at rightback but Jags didn?t fit the role very well which is why he reverted to Hibbert/Neville.

Definitely agree with Yobo, Lescott and Baines partnership tho.
Stuart Watson
3   Posted 08/04/2008 at 13:19:04

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Or even

Yobo Jags Lescott Baines
Ted Bundy
4   Posted 08/04/2008 at 13:22:21

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Yobo is shit as right back, gets caught out too many times. If Baines is going to a regular then Moyes needs to decide which of Jags, Yobo, Lescott to play in the middle on a consistent basis
Ste Birkett
5   Posted 08/04/2008 at 13:33:31

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I seem to remember Joey playing right back and being a liability there, for some reason. Certainly remember some mails on here not happy with him there. For me he’s more athletic than Jags and a lot of his challenges/covering runs are overlooked.

Can Jags play right back? Doesn’t really matter, as that’s Pip’s first position and no chance of Moyes dropping him......don’t want more chances for him to come into the middle either!
Paul Barrett
6   Posted 08/04/2008 at 13:29:43

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If we put Yobo at right back, then surely we will have the same distribution problems that we’ve got at the moment with Neville and Hibbert there?

Having said that, if Moyes worked with him on his passing I reckon he could fill Carsley’s position - he’s a strong lad, defensively aware, comfortable on the ball, knows the players and if he had Lescott and Jagielka behind him covering any mistakes it may give him a bit more confidence and time to pick a good pass. What does everyone reckon?
Oliver McAdam
7   Posted 08/04/2008 at 13:28:43

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Jags instead of Yobo, are you mad!

Yobo is the best defender at the club, bar non. His pace, positioning is brilliant, he wins almost everything that comes his way in the air and is as strong as an ox, he’s also only going to get better with experience, and for me should be club captain. His long balls are frustrating, yet thats probably the tactics set out, and his ’blips’ are becoming once or twice a season. He could be the best defender in the league.

Lescott is very good, however his goals are why he recieved international recognition. Stupid really considering him being a defender, but not it takes goals for the national press to take notice of a player from ’small clubs’ like everton. He is however an exellent defender, good in air, strong in tackle and appears to be an very intelligent player. He also offers better distribution than both Jags and Yobo, and his goals are invaluable, however his positioning his sometimes off and he loses his man on quite a few occasions.

Jags has been a revelation, however has less potential than the other two. What you see is what you get, workhorse, good tackler, strong, and a great blocker. However his distribution is worse than both yobo and lescott, his positioning at times has seen him caught out, especially against the better quality forwards.

As a partnership it must be Yobo and Lescott, their styles compliment eachother. Also, if one of them is left on the bench then many clubs would be alerted and I doubt they would stay. Jags their is less chance of that, and besides the season is 50+ games long so having 3 exellent defenders is essentail.
Danny Fleming
8   Posted 08/04/2008 at 13:41:46

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I have to agree with you paul that we would have the same problem as we have now if we put Yobo right back, but I still think that Jags isnt as defensively sound as Yobo, but I don think that he would fit in perfectly in the Carsley role as he is one of or not the best (bar Carsley) tackler in the team I still feel the right back position would still be ideal for Ryan Taylor of Wigan.

He is a good defender but he would is excellent going forward, gets goals and he could also take a bit of the weight off Mikel Arteta's, shoulders as he is a great crosser of the ball and a dead-ball specialist.

I think though Neville has to go, possibly Tony Hibbert, and I would give the left back position to Baines and give Paddy Boyle a chance ? everytime I hear the lad mentioned it's always about how well he has played so I think Moyes should push him to challenge Baines for a first team place.

I would also like to see young John Irving come forward as well ? he is another who is earning rave reviews for the reserves and has obviously shown a great deal of maturity as he's been then ressies captin for the past two years.

Paul O'Hanlon
9   Posted 08/04/2008 at 13:51:58

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I agree with you about Jags being one of our best players over the past few months, I also agree that Lescott is our best and more importantly, most consistent defender over the past two seasons. But Moyes had a choice to make in order to bring Baines in and I think he?s made the right one.

Yobo?s got all the attributes to be our best defender, his problems alway?s been making careless mistakes which have cost us. The more seasons that go by I think he?s making less and less of these and playing alongside Jags and Lescott have certainly helped.

Would like to see Jags tried at RB again, but it?ll never happen unless Neville?s moved into midfield (NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!).
Connor Rohrer
10   Posted 08/04/2008 at 13:56:25

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I like all of them but I feel the Yobo-Lescott partnership is the best way to go with Jagielka as back up.

I think you need a dominant centre half and Yobo is currently the only dominant centre half at the club. Jagielka is decent in the air but his height always gives him a disadvantage whereas Lescott despite his size doesn’t have a great leap and he doesn’t get alot of distance on his defensive headers. Yobo on the other hand has a super man leap and more likely than not gets alot of distance on his headers. He gets up well and his timing is brilliant.

I think aerial presence is needed at the back and Yobo brings that in abundance. If where going to accomadate Baines who is small then we need Yobo in there.

Jagielka is more of a no nonsense defender and its always good to have one. He wins the last ditch tackles and makes the blocks. I think Yobo just edges it for me.

Lescott is the best all rounder so he deserves to be in there. Only thing I personally think he has to improve is his timing and leap. Other than that he’s got it all.

right back’s the spot that needs changing though. Where solid at centre half and at left back. Neville is the weak link.
Joe Rourke
11   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:00:20

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People! the days of the arguement about who the 11 best players are long over...its SQUAD, SQUAD SQUAD...whats wrong with having three good inter-changeable players for the postion?...For me Lescott is the future and looks a bit fruastrated and under used at left back. I say make him captain and pick hiom at centre half every week. We need a leader we can look up to and with taste in interior decor!
Danny Fleming
12   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:09:12

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It says on that we are going for Cosmin Contra from Getafe. He would be a shit buy in my eyes ? he's about 33.
John Lloyd
13   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:21:08

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Yobo & Lescott are the top two centre halves at the club. Jags is great as a squad player to cover but no more.
Stephen Davies
14   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:24:32

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Sorry John, I can see that Jags in the England squad given the way he has progressed this season
Alex Storm
15   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:11:17

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As Connor mentioned the weak link amongst our backline is Neville. Howard is among the best goal keepers in the Prem. Yobo and Lescott have just about every attrbute you could want in a centre back i.e. pace, strength, heading, tackling and positional sense.

Baines is one of the most exciting young left backs in the country alongside Bale at Spurs. We just need a quality right back to complete our defensive set-up.

Our best defenders are Jagielka, Yobo, Lescott and Baines. Therefore, in my view that should be the line-up for the forseeable future. All four of them are young, pacy, talented and energetic and in Lescott and Jagielka are accomplished in two defensive roles.

Jagielka’s probably better as a central defender but is experienced enough at right back from his days at Sheffield Utd to do at good job in that position I feel. I’d just like to see that foursome start a few games together to see how it works.

The trouble is that if Jagielka turns out to be better in the right full-back position than Neville then Neville will probably be pushed into a midfield position.......a scenario which most would find most unpalatable.
David Edwards
16   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:16:49

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Interesting post - I think choosing between Jags and Yobo is one of the few headache decisions Davey has to make these days - as I can see the pros and cons of both players at times. Squad rotation is an obvious solution, but it doesn’t lead to building up that all important understanding that is needed for a great central defence partnership. Also, both players are at their best with games under their belts and resting them doesn’t prepare them well when the inevitable injuries or suspensions call them into action. When Jags sits out he loses confidence and sharpness. When Yobo sits out I think he feels more ’hard done by’ and has been prone to a little sulk in the past.

As I also agree that we must persist with Baines and Lescott as our left-side defensive future, then the only option is one of them having a run out at Right Back - and I would probably favour Jags and give him some time there now his confidence and form have returned. I honesty can’t envisage his defensive skills, forward forages and ball distribution being any worse than Hibbo or Pip, and with more experience he could grow into the role better than when he’s put into the midfield.

I have no issues with Tony and Phil being squad players on the bench or filling in for injuries etc. They have a part to play. However, whereas I think Davey has possibly realised Hibbo’s limitations at last, I still think he has a blind spot with his Captain. Play him in midfield and you are throwing in the towel with respect to attacking option. Better at Right Back? Yes. But does he honestly offer more than Jags might do? Probably not.

There are many questions Davey needs to answer correctly this Summer, and most concern Central Midfield and Right Back. Perhaps the one he needs to contemplate the longest is how he lets Pip know that his time as a regular is now over.
Jim Porritt
17   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:41:34

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I am writing this expecting a fair amount of backlash however what about playing 5-3-2 with wing backs?
Centre back is one of our strongest positions so why not play to that. We could play Yobo, Jags and Lescott in the middle. Baines has more than enough speed and crossing ability to play left wing back. Neville can play right wing back for the time being (we need a new right back in my opinion anyway - so why not buy someone adapt at playing right wing back).
Then of the three central midfielders Carsley or equivalent can sit in and let Cahill and Arteta roam forward to create and score. Then Johsnon running upfront with the Yak and that is a solid team.
David Edwards
18   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:45:05

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Jim - fair’s fair for thinking up another option. With the right players (and against the right opponents) I think wing-backs can be effective. However, pace is the key and while I have hopes for Baines, Neville will never have the pace needed on the right. Sure, someone new brought in during the summer might take his place (if Davey dares to think the unthinkable and drop Pip), but I can’t help but think that trying 5-3-2 to accommodate Jags and Yobo, at the expense of not having Peanuts, Ossie, Manny etc. is potentially flawed. I think I’d rather have Jags sit out than have those midfielders on the bench. Still, good on you for posting something radical, at least.
Michael Kenrick
19   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:49:11

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At least that?s something different, Jim, but it would be at the expense of what little creativity we have in the form of Osman, Pienaar and Fernandes, who would all have to be on the bench. And would we not then be hopelessly outnumbered in midfield, leading to more not less of the dreaded hoofball?

As Sunday demonstrated, the problem we seem to have is one of getting good enough balls in to the front pair, which according to convention requires numbers and creativity in midfield.
John Lloyd
20   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:59:04

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Jagielka had a fantastic run when he cam into our side but he is still 3rd choice for me. Although Yobo is prone to the odd mistake Jag is prone to more (arsenal, W.Ham) and in my opinion Lescott and Yobo are a better partnership so therefore one has to miss out and its unluckily Jags.
Seamus Murphy
21   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:59:35

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I dont think Jags was "dropped" but rotated. He has played in practically every game since Xmas. Good problem to have though.
Pity we hadnt the same worries in midfield!
Jay Harris
22   Posted 08/04/2008 at 14:44:43

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Jags has only played well at centre-back for about 5 out of 6 or 7 games and was absolute garbage in MF and RB. He is a good man-marker with determination and the ability to punt it upfield. That to me puts him at a squad player who can come in when we need that sort of player.

We need players in their natural positions and I believe Moyes is grooming Gosling for RB when he decides to retire Neville. If we had a mobile right MF player there would not be as much exposure of whoever plays at RB.

Yobo and Lescott are both class players and need to be our regular central pairing.

Chris Brown
23   Posted 08/04/2008 at 15:00:50

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I love the fact that we have a strong SQUAD at the back, and can cover any injury right now. This is a great problem to have. I wonder if Jags could be groomed to be a defensive midfielder? Could he be a replacement for Cars in a year or so?
J Parker
24   Posted 08/04/2008 at 15:10:04

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I think Neville, Jags, Lescott, Baine combo works the best for us. Jag and Yobo are just not forward thinking enough to play at right back. The problem with Yobo and Lescott in the centre is the lack of a leader at the back as neither is very vocal. Jags and Lescott have been brilliant this season and although Yobo hasn’t done much wrong, I think the those two work better together. Having said that Yobo is the most composed out of the three on the ball.

Jim Porritt
25   Posted 08/04/2008 at 15:36:10

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Sometimes giving someone who is not the most vocal the captaincy can bring out the best in them. So if Moyes does start playing Neville less next season and the captaincy is changed we have all said that none of our 3 centre backs are particulalry vocal so how about give it to Lescott anyway and see if he grows into it.
I know mant dont like them but it worked well for Rio at United and Beckham for England
Michael Hunt
26   Posted 08/04/2008 at 16:14:23

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I can be over-optimistic at times but I think Danny Gosling can be a valuable squad member next year, possibly breaking into the first team and staking a valid claim. I understand he has pace, stamina, great tackling ability, genuinely class and composure on the ball etc and can play rightback, wingback and right or centre midfield with aplomb.
I think Moyes should given him a go before the season is out but suspect it will next season. If they are good enough they are old enough and given the competition he deserves a chance. If he is up to it, it would give us much more viable options.
Danny Roberts
27   Posted 08/04/2008 at 16:40:51

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Depends on the opposition and the game itself.
Dominic Duerden
28   Posted 08/04/2008 at 16:48:59

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Neville Yobo Jagielka Lescott

Baines and Valente are able subs.

Hibbert is crap , need cover at right back.
Stuart Watson
29   Posted 08/04/2008 at 17:04:18

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Can Baines play right back?
Jay Harris
30   Posted 08/04/2008 at 17:24:12

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Just an interesting statistic.

Actim has Joleon Lescott down as the Number 1 defender in their statistics rating for the season with Tim Howard as the Number 2 GK behind David James.
David Bentley is number 4th best MF after the usual candidates(Sky4).
Worth a punt in the summer?
Mike Allison
31   Posted 08/04/2008 at 19:33:25

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"Can Baines play right back?"

No. He’s good, but he’s also outrageously one-footed. I’ve always thought Neville - Yobo - Lescott - Baines was the ’first-choice’ back four. Jagielka stays fit and played well at centre back when he got the chance. I do see him as a back up player though.

That back four, obviously Howard in goal, and Manny as the defensive midfielder, is a pretty class unit. I think Neville will get better if he stays at right back and never moves from there. The problem is that he plays in midfield quite often as we don’t have any cover there, and he’s not very good at it so he loses confidence and starts to look terrible. I genuinely believe if he was confined only to right back he would get his confidence back and look a much better player.
Steve Jones
32   Posted 08/04/2008 at 20:49:54

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Jags has developed well and is decent against most Premier League strikers, but his positioning isn't great as he gets under the long ball. The big problem is he gets out thought by the best strikers and is too slow in the tackle against them ie


All scored up agaisnt him - not quite good enough.
Adam Bennett
33   Posted 08/04/2008 at 23:20:07

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Well the best partnership in the middle has to be Yobo and Lescott but for right back... we dont have one. Hibbert don't know how he became a footballer and Nev is miles past whatever he had, if he ever had something
Derek Thomas
34   Posted 09/04/2008 at 06:53:07

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Wanted... one right sided wingback ( NOT pip or hib ) to go with Baines.

Jagielka, (as we were told from Sheff U) is a right sided CH. Yobo in the middle, leaving Lescott, who is obviously a leftsided CH

Which will, depending on if you are attacking or defending 3 or 5 at the back with a ’ holder’ manny-lelke ?? to sweep and distribute infront of them.

Simple this management lark!
Mike Williams
35   Posted 09/04/2008 at 08:57:59

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A nice problem for us to have but Moyes has absolutely got knock on the head Jags and Yobo’s hoofball play. They’re both from the David Weir school of defence: get the ball away from our goal and launch it down the pitch. I accept that in some situations that is the only option but not in all. We’ve got to start retaining possession once our capable defenders have won the ball.
Darren Manning
36   Posted 09/04/2008 at 09:44:49

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Re. Derek Thomas and Co. on the search for a right back, anyone remember Matteo Ferrari? or better still know how his career went since leaving us? I remember reading that his loan wasn’t made permanent as he ’’Couldn’t settle’’ which translates as he thought we were shit. Now we’re an established top 6 prem side, I’m sure he’d have no problem in settling in. Just an idea.
Darren Manning
37   Posted 09/04/2008 at 09:44:49

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Re. Derek Thomas and Co. on the search for a right back, anyone remember Matteo Ferrari? or better still know how his career went since leaving us? I remember reading that his loan wasn’t made permanent as he ’’Couldn’t settle’’ which translates as he thought we were shit. Now we’re an established top 6 prem side, I’m sure he’d have no problem in settling in. Just an idea.
Kevin Bennett
38   Posted 09/04/2008 at 10:19:44

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I think that Jags is the closest thing to Ratcliffe in his time at Goodison and is a must alongside Yobo who has been Mr Consistency all season.

I think Baines is lightweight and doesn’t offer anywhere near the threat of Lescott going forward.

The only problem we have is convincing Lescott that his long term position is full back, as I,m sure he would prefer to be in the middle.

I also think Valente is a very capable full back.

There are not too many teams like us with so many left sided defensive options.

We now badly need the same competition on the right, sadly I don,t think the solution lies within our current squad.
James Byrne
39   Posted 09/04/2008 at 09:30:57

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I agree with most of the input on this topic and share most of the views here; I think Jags has had a good season and although he has been exposed on a couple of occasions he has fantastic potential.

Lescott for me just oozes class, enough said.

Neville / Hibbert on the right; this is by far our worst area of our squad and puts so much pressure on the midfield due to the poor distribution when either one plays; both very committed but equally crap! We need a quality right back in the summer.

Yobo; I have never quite taken to Yobo and although he produces some solid performances and is great in the air he only has 70 to 80 minutes concentration and can become a real liability for me!

ray nickson
40   Posted 09/04/2008 at 12:15:54

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I actually dont think that Jagielka is premier league standard. EVERY game he balloons the ball at the corner flags, gets caught out ’under’ headers, and last ditch tackles / blocks mean probably out of position in the first place. Just not good enough in my view
Dave Keg
41   Posted 09/04/2008 at 13:04:24

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Good to read a constructive thread rather than the too common slag someone off comments.
Baines, like Valente, is good going forward (in a wing-back role), but is very poor at keeping tight to his man on a breakaway - particularly crosses coming in from Neville/Hibbert’s side.
Baines and Jags have looked every bit what we paid for them. 4 million quids worth of fairly competent Prem defenders - good enough against the majority of the dross but troubled against other "big 6" clubs.
Matthew Tyrrell
42   Posted 09/04/2008 at 13:41:55

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Steve Jones, I totally agree mate. I can?t remember seeing a centre half who lets the ball bounce as much as Jags. He panics with the long straight ball and does not position himself early enough, and his distribution is poor. He has recieved plaudits for his last ditch tackles which time and again are retrieving an earlier mistake. I just have not seen anything in his game to like unlike many of my fellow blues.

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