Senior midfield problems that won’t go away:
Sigurdsson – Not a midfielder
Iwobi – Not a midfielder
Bernard – Not influential
Gomes – Slow, no forward drive or dynamism
Walcott – Peripheral
All these players are nice boys; I wouldn’t mind playing against them at all. I’d know no-one was going to tackle me very often and I’d have a safe, nice, friendly game. I would be happy and confident before the game started.
With our senior midfield, there is no fear factor, no aggression, no trepidation from any opposition. They can be dominated, out-tackled and out-fought.
Where is the feistiness, the energy, the dynamism and drive to commit the opposition?
I am deliberately leaving Tom Davies and Anthony Gordon out of this because, with those two, who cost nothing, I can see a desire and they're often forward-thinking. These boys are junior members and deserve better support from their supposed peers. It’s time to blood the very promising Gordon more from now until the season’s end; he should have started against Tottenham.
Carlo already knows, and we already know, we are going nowhere fast until two quality midfielders come in. Last night's match shone a 500-megawatt spotlight on that fact. Other current players can respond very positively to the right quality additions (eg, Bruno Fernandes).
Keep an eye on our midfield transfer dealings... the success or failure of Carlo and the club over the next few seasons depends on them above all else.
The next 6 weeks is do or die time for Marcel Brands.
Reader Comments (7)
Note: the following content is not moderated or vetted by the site owners at the time of submission. Comments are the responsibility of the poster. Disclaimer
1 Posted 09/07/2020 at 09:06:26
2 Posted 09/07/2020 at 09:18:14
For the rest of this season the options are slim. I hope Delph comes back. I actually think he is our best CM (when fit) in a 442 and one of the only ones with a decent blend of energy, defensive ability and sensible use of the ball. There's a few players who have not benefitted from the move to 442 and I think Gomes, Sigurdsson and Iwobi are probably top of that list. They need to adjust or else they must be replaced.
3 Posted 09/07/2020 at 09:45:49
The more encouraging signs from Carlo are that there is still a willingness to spend money, perhaps more than the circa £60m net I guesstimated we might spend.
Based on rumours and the genersl consensus of need - seems likely to be:
1. CB: one of Gabriel, Salisu or Todibo
2. CM: probably not Rabiot now that he's cemented a place at Juve. But someone with pace, energy and aggression (Mckennie being the current subject of all the paper talk)
3: RM: probably (hopefully) a left footer for balance, maybe Bailey or Under although they'd both need to play with more discipline in a 442
Such recruitment will undoubtedly strengthen a side which (boring performances and disappointment at Spurs aside) is on a really good run, despite glaring deficiencies in the first 11 and squad depth.
Carlo clearly believes his tactical nous + limited but strategic recruitment can challenge the top 4.
It's going to be a tall order, but much better plan than bringing in loads of new players to a squad where few have been here longer than 2 or 3 years.
4 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:08:04
As a club though, in the critical positions like central midfield we need reliability. Delph will, on evidence, as he ages [ 31 soon ] will become even more injury prone with the intensity of PL football. If we could offload him I wouldn't hesitate, but I think he is yet another we have no choice but to make the best of whilst he is here until June 2022.
Also, I don't see how Sigurdsson fits into the team now, never mind next season. When Carlo's new midfielder[s] come in there is no place for Sigurdsson at all in Carlo's preferred set up. If he wants to play football he will have no alternative but to move on.
We will be coy but entertain offers for him I think. He could do a decent job in a different system with one of the other mid table PL clubs. If he is not at no.10 he is a lost soul.
Someone will take a gamble at the right price.
5 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:13:46
6 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:19:32
7 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:06:40
If we sell him, then we may not get much of a fee. Maybe £10 to £15m, maybe a loan.
If we keep him, his role must be limited to playing behind the forward in a 4231 formation. He is very productive here, scoring and assisting on a regular basis. This means he is a substitute - who will come on to allow tactical switches in games.
Such an option could bring us circa 5 odd goals. That sounds measly but it can make a difference. We are chronically short of goals after all.
If there is no intention of ever playing him in the correct position then sell.
Add Your Comments
In order to post a comment, you need to be logged in as a registered user of the site.
Or Sign up as a ToffeeWeb Member — it's free, takes just a few minutes and will allow you to post your comments on articles and Talking Points submissions across the site.