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Dean Smith

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As we all know, team confidence is critical and as yet we have definitely not clicked. I have seen enough to believe we have the talent but the poor passing and amount of balls going astray suggests we are almost trying to hard. Many times we were in good positions against Wham only for them to break down due to a poor pass or over-run. Maybe I am overly optimistic but still believe at some point over the next 4/5 games it will start to click. Wham could have gone 3rd if they had beaten us and it was clear from the game, despite being poor overall, that there really wasnt that much between the teams. 

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22 hours ago, JAMAICAN-VILLAN said:

Agreed, I was pretty much forced to watch Liverpool, Man U, and Man City's, Tottenhams, and Arsenals first 3 or 4 games. (Egyptian friends, what to do).

Liverpool stood out to me, because I really thought they were the least cohesive, or impressive, of the Title "Contenders" i had watched.

However, their  attacking/defensive press is always relentless.

They always manage to crack teams, and they can obviously defend!

 

Its what the very best teams do.

I had a concern in the championship with this very subject and I think it has improved marginally, since we have gone up......Nakamba and Luiz do get involved as does John McGinn, Jack at times, but not as often.

We need most of the team doing it.......We are still inclined to give the opposition too much space to play in and only close down on the edge of our own box.....its like giving oxygen to a fire.

I am also frustrated at not seeing a player upfield for corners and free kicks against us......Gabby always stayed up for the outlet ball, because lets face it, in terms of odds there is more chance of us booting it out than the opposition scoring....also it takes men out of their offensive mode and commits them to defend.

I still think a players approach to the game is more significant than the formation we choose.....not dismissing formations in saying that, just think other issues are more significant.

 

Edited by TRO
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13 hours ago, MikeMcKenna said:

As we all know, team confidence is critical and as yet we have definitely not clicked. I have seen enough to believe we have the talent but the poor passing and amount of balls going astray suggests we are almost trying to hard. Many times we were in good positions against Wham only for them to break down due to a poor pass or over-run. Maybe I am overly optimistic but still believe at some point over the next 4/5 games it will start to click. Wham could have gone 3rd if they had beaten us and it was clear from the game, despite being poor overall, that there really wasnt that much between the teams. 

I agree.

We have conceded 6 goals in 5 games, that is up there with the best (outside the 2 who are on another planet)......I still think a decent defence will keep you in this division, but we all know goals are important too.

The main issue for me is the science between the man with the ball and the recipient of it.....I think our positional play decision making OFF the ball is making life difficult for the player passing the ball......We all know, both  bits need to be in sync and timing is key, but the player off the ball,must have the decision making quality to A) make it easy for the player passing the ball and b) be in a position where it hurts the opposition......this requires Nous.

What ever the reasons, we are not in sync sufficiently yet and making hard work for ourselves......The running off the ball is key for me.

Edited by TRO

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38 minutes ago, TRO said:

I agree.

We have conceded 6 goals in 5 games, that is up there with the best (outside the 2 who are on another planet)......I still think a decent defence will keep you in this division, but we all know goals are important to.

The main issue for me is the science between the man with the ball and the recipient of it.....I think our positional play decision making OFF the ball is making life difficult for the player passing the ball......We all know, both  bits need to be in sync and timing is key, but the player off the ball,must have the decision making quality to A) make it easy for the player passing the ball and b) be in a position where it hurts the opposition......this requires Nous.

What ever the reasons, we are not in sync sufficiently yet and making hard work for ourselves......The running off the ball is key for me.

I'd be worried if we weren't making chances. I think Nakamba coming in means we are more solid in midfield and it will allow Grealish and McGinn to continue to get forward. Our big issues is the wings. None of our wingers have had a good 90 minutes. They have been good in spells but not good enough. It means Wesley is isolated and we are also not creating enough opportunities for him. Monday was the first time I think he has missed a big chance. He really hasn't had many chances in the 5 games apart from that. One issue we have is Taylor. He has done really well defensively but he impacts our forward player in such a negative way that anyone who has played left wing has looked poor. The only time any of our wingers have looked good (Trez v Spurs and Jota v Everton) was when they played on the right. I think Targett will have to come in and we may have to sacrifice some of our solidity at the back to provide better balls in the box for Wesley and our midfielders to attack. 

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I honestly didn’t feel at any point (other than one time where the ball floated down to Taylor to clear) that we were likely to concede a goal during that game. Marvelous really added to the solidity, and he seems like a real ball winner, midfield boss.

The other end of the pitch, 2 could’ve/ should’ve gone in the goal. I perhaps feel like we are having a bit of bad luck at late with decisions going against us, or the ball just not falling right.

Still nothing to be concerned about for me yet.

Edited by ChicagoVillan1983

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40 minutes ago, ChicagoVillan1983 said:

he seems like a real ball winner

Deffo, once he's up to speed and got a bit more confidence I think his passing will improve too. Liked him a lot, I think Luiz will benefit from the competition for his place too. 

If we were playing Bruceball and getting the same results I'd be worried, thing is though at times we play some very nice football that will eventually bear fruit if we believe in ourselves and cut out some of the unforced errors. I think there is potential to improve a lot, so I think we'll be ok.

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Really needs to push Jack as a lwf and give space to Conor in the midfield.

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11 hours ago, KentVillan said:

Agree with not sacking Smith, and that we would tear up the Championship... but relegation means losing Grealish and Mings, and probably Engels and McGinn (for tidy profits of course, but still). It would set our progress back two years. Avoiding relegation this season would be far better for these lads.

Don't know, Owners don't need the cash, FFP wouldn't be a thing straight away and I think they would give it one season again to try take us back.

Who knows unless it comes to that, hope it doesn't though.

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3 hours ago, MikeMcKenna said:

As we all know, team confidence is critical and as yet we have definitely not clicked. I have seen enough to believe we have the talent but the poor passing and amount of balls going astray suggests we are almost trying to hard. Many times we were in good positions against Wham only for them to break down due to a poor pass or over-run. Maybe I am overly optimistic but still believe at some point over the next 4/5 games it will start to click. Wham could have gone 3rd if they had beaten us and it was clear from the game, despite being poor overall, that there really wasnt that much between the teams. 

 

WHAM to that

 

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Also, if you take out the dumb errors against Bournemouth and give us the point agasint Palace we’d be up the table! 

 

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1 hour ago, lapal_fan said:

We're an improving team, in a very unforgiving league.  Look at Bournemouth's two goals - both came from silly, individual errors and the second goal was inch perfect, going in off the post.  That's cruel, much like Harry Kane's goal where the ball ping-ponged off our CB's and landed at his feet 10 yards out.  

In the last couple of games, we haven't made any of those silly individual errors, that's an improvement. 

We haven't been badly beaten (yet) and I think almost everyone is happy with Mings & Engles.  Some may disagree with our wing backs however, but at least defensively, they are sound (Freddy can take a risk though).

I think our main problem is the discipline in midfield.  Grealish should be able to receive the ball on the half-turn and run at defenders.  I don't see him doing that much because he's too deep.  Why is he too deep?  I think it's McGinn fault personally, he's too far up the pitch, and always wants to go past the striker (hence his Spurs goal!).  

Now let me say, I love McGinn, he's brilliant.  That said, if he focused more on winning the ball (which he's very good at), and either driving forward as we know he can, or passing to Grealish and advancing, I think we'd see much more attacking threat.  I noticed on Monday night (and the game against Everton), he does so much running, but in little bursts.  He's truly a highlights player, he's exciting when he gets the ball, rolling past defenders, but often he does far too much himself, which leaves him short to help out defensively.  I actually think he'd get more goals and assists playing behind Grealish, because he can hit a ball very sweetly, I'd like to see him getting lay-offs, much like the Hourihane goal vs West Brom late last year.  His goal against Forest last season, was a great strike.  We'd be a more dangerous team if we had McGinn winding up a shot from over 18 yards.  Likewise, I think having Jack closer to their box would help us get more penalties, more chances created and Jack can also chip in with a few goals in their box.  

We've got the DM, I think we just need a little more discipline from McGinn and Grealish in that midfield.  If we can get Jack closer to Wesley and the wingers, I think we'd be much more effective at hurting teams too. 

It's the great balancing act of football, the more we hurt teams, the more onus they'll place on defence, thus us getting less pressure and playing higher up the pitch, which is when we see Villa at our best. 

I understand there will be times and games where we do lack quality against opponents, but against West Ham on Monday, with a man advantage, our decision making was poor.  Much of that was down to tired legs I guess, but if we managed the games better and calmed down and became more disciplined, I think we'd better, without having to make too many changes.

Just my 2 pence :)   

So essentially, in attack, McGinn is Hourihane with athleticism and dynamism.

I have noticed his goal threat has increased though.

What we need is the people we have signed to do the defensive)box to box work, to do so, effectively.

Then he might feel the right to be alot more forward.

Also why, for all of Hourihanes goalthreat etc, he will eventually be phased out if he doesn't step it up.

Edited by JAMAICAN-VILLAN

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1 hour ago, villalad21 said:

Really needs to push Jack as a lwf and give space to Conor in the midfield.

So you’ve said about a thousand times in every thread

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11 minutes ago, mikeyp102 said:

So you’ve said about a thousand times in every thread

I dont think it's a bad shout though.  I would put Luiz in midfield with Nakamba and McGinn though.  Trez and McGinn floating/wing behind Wes.  We just have to make sure we dont go too narrow when we play.

Still concerned about goals, watching highlights I dont know if I am seeing things but feels like even when we shoot we arent good shooters.  By that I mean, even though we do have shots on target they are all straight at the keeper.  Keepers dont have to make great saves or even good saves, so while we may some decent stats on chances in some games they arent bottom or top corner shots.  Again I may just be seeing things and I have looked to see if there is any shot maps on the internet but havent found anything, it's just something I noticed.

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I'm just going to chuck this quote from Grealish in again in case people haven't seen it.

Quote

“Some people say I should be a left winger. No thanks. I hate that position! I’m a No 8. I’ll play No 10 if asked, but I haven’t played there for three years,” he says. “I like my current position and I’m excited for the rest of the season. I speak to the manager every day about football and we want to make Villa an exciting team playing on the front foot. I’m confident we will get there.”

 

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20 minutes ago, Sam-AVFC said:

I'm just going to chuck this quote from Grealish in again in case people haven't seen it.

 

As I saw one fan say "Better players than Jack have switched positions for the benefit of the team, it's about the team, not JACK"

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53 minutes ago, JAMAICAN-VILLAN said:

As I saw one fan say "Better players than Jack have switched positions for the benefit of the team, it's about the team, not JACK"

I completely get that, but Jack has been made captain to improve his game (as he clearly isn't the biggest leader in our squad). Is it so outrageous to think we'd take his wishes into account when we decide where he plays? I'm just not sure the improvement we might see from him playing out wide would be enough to counteract any potential negative impact.

I'm pretty sure DS also hasn't played a single player out of position apart from when injuries have forced him to?

I also think you have to consider the fact Bruce had been playing him out on the left and he hadn't been doing that well so DS may undermine some of his past work from when he came in if he shovels him out there again.

I completely understand people making differentiations between a left winger, inside forward, left forward etc. That said, I don't think your average player would consider 'roles' when interviewing so I do believe he means he doesn't want to play on the left fullstop.

Edited by Sam-AVFC

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Our owners won't be thinking about whether he can bring us straight back up, they'll want someone who can keep us up this season, if they have to be they'll be ruthless. Relievingly I don't think it will come to that.

Edited by useless

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Grealish needs to be further up the pitch, playing far too deep, yeah he's still dictating but we need him starting it a bit further forward. Hourihane has the vision for a pass and can strike from distance, think he deserves a chance, he should have came on when West Ham went down to 10 men imo.

Jota is skilful but doesn't have the pace to play out wide in this league, he either has to be central or introduced as a sub. Trezeguet is the better option due to his pace. I would even give Kodjia a run there and maybe drop El Ghazi to the bench.

Wesley needs more players around him, far too isolated.

Defensively we look solid, that's the major plus point. Just need to tweak it going forward and hopefully it clicks sooner rather than later.

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1 hour ago, Sam-AVFC said:

I'm just going to chuck this quote from Grealish in again in case people haven't seen it.

 

Jack is not a not a number 8

The fact that he thinks he is a number 8 is fairly alarming. He doesn't posses all of the tools to be a number 8

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