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2 minutes ago, Spoony said:

It does seem I’m in the minority here. I found that game incredibly frustrating. A lot of it comes down to Brentford supposedly being this great team managed by this great manager but actually they look pretty dire. We should be tearing them apart at home. A last minute 2-2 is not good enough for promotion. We have somehow managed to make ‘goalkeeper’ one of the weakest positions on the pitch when it’s one of the easiest to fill for a club of our stature (i.e. any decent championship goalkeeper would move to us and would do). We had all that possession and played attacking football - great - but how many clear cut chances did we actually create against a pretty average team???

I’ve not said it before, but we are never going up under this man.

Frustrating we didn't win of course, given our play was so good but we utterly dominated that game for 70 minutes and it's very hard to break down any team that is sat back defending for their lives.

Brentford were parked defensively and were resolute, a moment of magic or a defensive lapse is pretty much all that could have broken them down with how they were playing due to the pressure being put on them. 

If we can continue that level of performance I'd be highly confident we'll go up. 

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4 minutes ago, Dick said:

We see this sort of football maybe 2/3 times a season. It isn't the default. The default is defensive and cautious. 

Fingers crossed this is the new Steve Bruce.

yep, a big part of what makes bruce frustrating is that he is too cautious to let them off the leash on a regular basis, almost surprising that he did it tonight vs a good brentford team (maybe not seeing as he did it vs wolves too) we then have reading away who we should go at hell for leather again and we should beat, then burton in the cup which he'll probably play a reserve team for, then sheffield utd away

you can almost guarantee our approach to the Burton and Sheffield games wont be what we saw tonight

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1 minute ago, LakotaDakota said:

He's playing well that Whelan chap, Cleaning up after everyone so McGinn & Grealish can do whatever they like ?

Whelan was excellent again tonight yeah. 

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13 minutes ago, Folski said:

Ah lads the amount of time a player deep in their own half booted the ball under minimal if any pressure. 

Look at the positions, how many were wrong? If I'm Hourihane, what am I thinking seeing Whelan on the pitch?

 

You’d probably be thinking “there’s no way I’d be playing as well at DM as that guy”

Whelan is a good player. How he’s got this reputation of being crap amongst some of our fans is baffling. 

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1 minute ago, Stevo985 said:

Whelan is a good player. How he’s got this reputation of being crap amongst some of our fans is baffling. 

part of me thinks its because there will be 5/6 games this season where we probably dont need a DMC in there, rotherham at home, last season when thor played there and ran the show vs reading at home and then theres definitely 5/6 games where we dont need whelan and jedinak in there

but tonight vs a good on the ball team he's perfect for it, quietly goes about his business protecting the back 4 breaking stuff up, doesnt have to do anything clever, its perfect for him, vs a long ball team where they put us under the cosh you put jedinak in there

i dont think he's required or suitable for every match we play

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while i remain cautious about the prospect of this form continuing have to give props to Bruce on our forward play and sense of urgency today.

still not convinced by Jed at centre back but Axel did some good things at right back, Whelan did the holding role superbly.

Excited about the new signings, I just fear that we are not linked to any defenders being a sign Bruce is fine with our defence.

But enough moaning, the potato done good.

Edited by VillanousOne
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This is team and formation i would pick for Saturday:

my team.JPG

Edited by Villan4Life
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5 minutes ago, Villan4Life said:

This is team and formation i would pick for Saturday:

my team.JPG

Like i said i dont think you need whelan, they've obviously changed the set up this season but in april we had 78% possession vs them, it was thor in there and he was excellent, had lots of touches, covered a lot of ground, get someone more comfortable on the ball in there and control the game, not sure if hourihane is the answer that might be too much, id put thor in there again, i think if reading sit deep the player in that role will see more of the ball than any other villa player, that's not what whelans good at

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Tonight is now the bench mark for me. I’m one of bruces biggest critics regarding the style but even if we’d have lost I’d have praised him for that performance. If we follow that up on Saturday  we will win easily. 

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Im not a massive fan of Bruce at all but he got most things spot on tonight tactics wise. He loses points for sticking with and not subbing Jedinak who was woeful and for leaving it until the last 8 minutes before bringing on more subs. But overall I’m happy, he was more attacking, subs were attacking, positive play etc... may this continue but we’ll see as it’s Bruce. If it carries on then great.

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13 minutes ago, Farlz said:

I think I get more annoyed when we play like we did tonight because it shows what we can do, high pressing and not letting teams play. Every once in a while we're superb then it disappears again.

Hopefully, just hopefully we have started to see how Bruce wants us to play this season. It was thrilling to watch. If it wasn't for dirty Brentford's cheating and the crooked/awful ref it would have been a well deserved 3 points. 

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That first half performance would have me buying a season ticket ... sadly that second half performance would have me ripping it up. 

And therein is Bruce’s reign in a nutshell

 

once he stops with the square pegs in round holes we might crack this division 

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4 hours ago, Spoony said:

It’s funny but for me, after that game, I’m done. How can you have that much possession and have barely any shots on goal??? Brentford are clearly not that good at all, despite all their hype. Frankly, they actually look pretty crap. All of our players are better than theirs position for position and yet they came so so close to beating us? We have a class team of players well above this division. Week in, week out we play against players so below our standard. We should be absolutely storming this league.

I was supporting Bruce until today but I’m over it now. This is NOT a good league. The standard is NOT good. In fact, it’s pretty terrible and 20 of these teams should be nowhere near the premier league and if they do go up they’d immediately go back down. We have spent a fortune building this squad and it is actually a great squad with a lot of premier league experience. I mean even the likes of Hutton, Elmo and Whelan have PL experience that other Championship teams can only dream of. And yet we scrap by. It’s not enough. The right man (whoever that might be) would make this team walk this league.

At least someone is happy.

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5 hours ago, Ingram85 said:

Im not a massive fan of Bruce at all but he got most things spot on tonight tactics wise. He loses points for sticking with and not subbing Jedinak who was woeful and for leaving it until the last 8 minutes before bringing on more subs. But overall I’m happy, he was more attacking, subs were attacking, positive play etc... may this continue but we’ll see as it’s Bruce. If it carries on then great.

I dont think Mile was that bad.. one bad header that led to a chance but other than that i thought he did ok....... Chester looked shaky imo. I dont mind Mile as an emergency fill in.. but we cant possibly be planning on using him there all season. I am guessing Bruce sees him as one of the few in the squad that can dominate in the air (which he does).. just needs to tidy his game... may need time to adjust to the new position so he may still with him. 

My bigger concern is the fullback situation. I would like a proper left back and right back for once. Targett on loan and De Laet (why is he being snubbed after being one of the most impressive in pre season). 

Credit where credit is due though and i thought we out passed and outplayed Brentford. Better passing %..more shots on goal.. more possession.. better chances etc. 

Our main issue is.. we always cross.. ( 46 v 16 granted we had more possession but only 10 more long balls than them) we need to play through the middle more.. when we did that and found Kodjia/Grealish/McGinn combined.. we looked dangerous. 

Edited by KSV
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7 hours ago, Dick said:

We see this sort of football maybe 2/3 times a season. It isn't the default. The default is defensive and cautious. 

Fingers crossed this is the new Steve Bruce.

Totally agree that we haven't seen it enough and yes, fingers crossed it continues. Plenty of positives from last night.

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26 minutes ago, KSV said:

I dont think Mile was that bad.. one bad header that led to a chance but other than that i thought he did ok....... Chester looked shaky imo. I dont mind Mile as an emergency fill in.. but we cant possibly be planning on using him there all season. I am guessing Bruce sees him as one of the few in the squad that can dominate in the air (which he does).. just needs to tidy his game... may need time to adjust to the new position so he may still with him. 

My bigger concern is the fullback situation. I would like a proper left back and right back for once. Targett on loan and De Laet (why is he being snubbed after being one of the most impressive in pre season). 

Credit where credit is due though and i thought we out passed and outplayed Brentford. Better passing %..more shots on goal.. more possession.. better chances etc. 

Our main issue is.. we always cross.. ( 46 v 16 granted we had more possession but only 10 more long balls than them) we need to play through the middle more.. when we did that and found Kodjia/Grealish/McGinn combined.. we looked dangerous. 

You’re right about the crosses. They sussed us out and cut off the supply line, which should have left more room down the middle for Jack and John. But we didn’t exploit that. 

Very good for an hour or so, but then we tired and ran out of ideas going forward. I’m slightly concerned that despite our dominance we didn’t work their goal keeper enough. Someone who could make the most of all those crosses would be good, especially as we have more wingers on the way. Also CB and a left back essential additions in my opinion. 

Edited by DaveAV1

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7 hours ago, Stevo985 said:

You’d probably be thinking “there’s no way I’d be playing as well at DM as that guy”

Whelan is a good player. How he’s got this reputation of being crap amongst some of our fans is baffling. 

Last 9 league games Whelan has started 9 undefeated. 7 wins 2 draws 20 goals for 6 against 5 clean sheets. 1 game was 45 mins 1 x 60 the rest 80-90. Can we put to bed the idea Thor is a better holding mid. Whelan is the best we have

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