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The Midfield


Condimentalist
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As we all know, our first team lacks quality all over the park. We're desperate for a new left back and need at least one forward player, be it a striker or a winger, to give us some cutting edge up top.

One area that I had thought we were probably OK in was midfield but having watched the second half of the Forest game I'm a little concerned. We lined up:

KEA - Bannan

Holman - Ireland

N'Zogbia

Despite having some talented players in there, it didn't quite work out. KEA and Bannan both looked good, again, but lacked discipline. The amount of space that Forest had in front of our defence time and again was a real concern and I'd be worried about playing like that in the Premiership. Bannan needs to learn his position (I do think that deep lying playmaker is his position) and, either way, one of them is going to have to sit and hold and resist the urge to get forward.

Going forward we were poor on Saturday but have been better in some of the other games I have seen. N'Zogbia continues to frustrate, Ireland is either a genius or a bystander and Holman has a lot to prove. In his favour, he not only works hard but reads the game quite well I think. Unfortunately his quality on the ball doesn't quite match up. We'll have to see how he turns out. Either way, it's a narrow midfield and the supply to Bent was non-existent for the entire half.

I actually think Lambert wants to play 442 when Gabby is fit, but that provides more questions than answers. El Ahmadi and Bannan could work well but I'm not sure they're quite ready just yet, and I don't know where that leaves Ireland. I'm starting to think we need an enforcer in there. Delph hasn't looked up to it and Herd is a pretty limited player.

In terms of numbers we're well stocked in midfield, but I'm not sure the balance is quite there. Anyone else?

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I think we are a CM and winger short of where we need to be. Happy with KEA, Holman, Ireland and N'Zogbia and Bannan as back up. Apart from that ALbrighton is injured and not in form and the rest are too young and unproven.

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I think for the players we have at our club we need to play a narrow midfield, Literally have no natural wide players apart from Marc, N'Zogbia, seem like too much of a liability in a wide area so i'd start using him as a forward, and Holman seems to like to drift inside anyway so think it'd be best for him to play off Bent also.

If we want to play with any width, we need to sign two wingers, and can't seem Lampart spending that sort of money when a LB is desperately needed.

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I think a top quality winger has to be the priority right now.

I think we will struggle to break teams down with the players we have and I think once again bent will be wasted.

We have one player who can actually run at defenders and that nzogbia and most of the time there is no end product from him.

It's a serious weak point in our team at the moment.

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By the looks of it we're going to be playing narrow and expecting the full backs to provide the width (come back Kyle Walker, please!). I thought Holman was signed as a winger but he was in the middle of the park against Forest.

I'm starting to agree with Big John's view above that Bent is going to be wasted.

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Yeah agree, I still maintain we Need a DM who will just sit infront of the back 4, Play the Makelele type role, and Allow KEA to get Forward.

Why?

That's the role KEA plays, has always played. He's a ball winning central mid, athletic, smart and comfortable. Let him have that role with Herd backing him up and I'm happy.

We have a fantastic attacking mid in Ireland who will once again take a step forward and continue to prove the doubters wrong. Options in Bannan, Zog and Holman plus a sprinkling of highly rated academy players. Seems set to me down the middle.

However yes, were gagging for width. We will need it as the season unfolds and I've faith that were looking.

All of these threads are premature to be fair, but the concerns are justified.

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It's all about the money. We are lacking all over the pitch if we compare ourselves to the top 5 clubs maybe even top 8 but we hold up well against the rest.

To even push for the awful Europa Cup we need (imo) an decent forward, defensive midfielder and a fast quality LB. None of these of the right calibre will be cheap and nothing I have heard or read leads me to believe RL is going to spend big.

The midfield will sort itself out, personally I'm more concerned about a leaky defence and a none scoring forward line. yes I know the midfield has a big say in both but you can't expect to compete with the big guns if you can't spend not matter how good Paul Lambert is.

All that said I don't really care any more, I don't blame RL or anyone at VP. Those in charge of the game have allowed it to become a money game and we haven't faired too badly, better than most but as much as we love Villa we are not a big club compared to the ManU and ManC's etc we don't have either the turnover or owners willing to spend whatever it takes to succeed. I support Villa wherever we finish as long as the team give 100% I can ask no more although Mcshit almost made me question why last season, even with this average squad I'm really looking forward to this season.

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If the choice was an 'enforcer' type player or a winger, which would people choose? I'd be tempted to say a winger, actually, and work with Bannan and El Ahmadi intensively in training. Ultimately it might have to be KEA who sits as I'm not sure Bannan has the presence or tackling ability. This goes against what Lambert was saying recently, though. And in a 442 where does this leave Ireland? Is it credible to play KEA and Ireland as a central pair? I don't think so, personally. If we play 451 it's even more imperative to sign a winger I think.

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By the looks of it we're going to be playing narrow and expecting the full backs to provide the width (come back Kyle Walker, please!). I thought Holman was signed as a winger but he was in the middle of the park against Forest.

I'm starting to agree with Big John's view above that Bent is going to be wasted.

Kyle Walker's bursts forward were usually kamikazi runs across the centre of the pitch from what I can remember. I don't think you're even guaranteed width with him.

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Would you really play Bannan over Herd ? Herdys a class player....Bannan is way too inconsistent.

Aside from the fact they're both footballers in what way are they even remotely comparable?

Am i missing something ? I said which CM footballer would you play...Not how similar type of players they are ? ( Which clearly they're not similar. )

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