Bigfooty Yid Army Thread

Yoda_

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First half: Garbage
Second half: Much better

Son - Garbage
Kane - Scored, but not involved enough
Hojbjerg - Too slow and gives the ball away too much
Defence - Very good
Perisic - Great signing
Bissouma - Play him already
Creative midfielder - Need one
Kulusevski - Very good. Should cut in and cross more often because he's very good at it.
have wanted this for 18 months but apparently Conte doesn't play with one
 

jd2010

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I don't even mind if they're not an out and out creative AM type. Just someone with a fail safe first touch (Bentancur and Bissouma) and can play great forward attacking passes (Skipp may get there)
 

jd2010

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The wolves CM trio played 8 key passes to our duos 0. Nearly all in the first half. They've got no fit striker which is why we weren't behind at HT. We got a rocket at HT and pressed them back and won the territory battle and with sustained pressure and our set piece wizard we stole that. It's not a complaint just an obersavation and actually a good thing, we've stolen 3 points from our last 2 games.

Way too early to say this is exactly like it. But remember that Poch season when we kept stealing points and were in the title challenge pack playing poorly and it all crumbled away at Burnley. Eventually you can't keep stealing points. Great treat to have that we can. But we've got a few games coming up where we need to batter sides
 

hawkman

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Hojbjerg and Bentancur do their job.. AGAIN.
1 shot to 12 at HT. Both getting scorn. But Wolves only had 2 of them on target for 0.40 xG from 12 shots.

Showing again that they did their job screening the back 3 in Conte's system. Conte teams only have the DLP when playing 3-5-2. Fabregas etc.
We don't have that type of player, and won't this window. So creativity will continue to come from wingbacks and the front 3. As well as attacking subs with Moura, Richarlison etc. As highlighted by Perisic getting forward and getting the corner that led to the goal.

Meanwhile our two holding mids and 3 centrebacks kept a cleansheet.
They were awful in the 1st half. The fact that it was 12-1 shots shows that. They weren't stopping anything and we had no way of getting out. They were better in the 2nd half
 

Art Vandelay_

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They were awful in the 1st half. The fact that it was 12-1 shots shows that. They weren't stopping anything and we had no way of getting out. They were better in the 2nd half
12-1 is a lack of creativity on our part, we were too safe in possession. Which improved after HT.

My feeling is our CM group is unfairly maligned on here by people incorrectly attributing their role.
 

Art Vandelay_

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Good editorial from Charlie.

The first half of Tottenham Hotspuragainst Wolverhampton Wandererswas a reminder of one of the biggest issues still facing Antonio Conte and his team:

What to do against a midfield that not only outnumbers their own but also has the quality to make it look second best?

This was the challenge facing Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Rodrigo Bentancuron Saturday lunchtime against the seemingly eternally effective duo of Joao Moutinho and Ruben Neves, supplemented by impressive £42million ($49.7m) new signing Matheus Nunes.

And it was one they struggled with, as they did against Chelsea last Sunday, when Mason Mount frequently dropped in to support Jorginho and N’Golo Kante and leave Hojbjerg and Bentancur overwhelmed.

In a first half where Wolves were the better side, the challenge was made more difficult by Daniel Podencedropping into midfield pockets, and at the other end Harry Kane not being able to get close enough to Neves. The visitors also effectively blocked the passing lanes to Dejan Kulusevski, forcing Spurs to go long through Eric Dier.

Conte then asked his wing-backs to tuck in a little bit, and this — coupled with the chance to get into his players at half-time — helped change the momentum of the match, which Tottenham ultimately won 1-0 to continue their positive start to the season.

How much, then, does ceding control of the midfield matter? Is it something Spurs should fundamentally be worried about? Or is it simply a consequence of a 3-4-3 system designed to create overloads on the flanks and relying, as Wolves head coach Bruno Lage said afterwards, on “leaving the three guys — the two runners and Kane — so if they recover the ball in three or four seconds they can be near the ball to create chances”?

The first thing to say, as tends to be the case, when questions are asked of Conte’s system is that it has worked exceptionally well so far for Tottenham.

Results have been very good on the whole, and especially since the back end of last season. In their last 14 matches, Spurs have picked up 33 points, scoring 34 goals and conceding eight. So the numbers suggest the system is working well.

The system is not infallible, of course, but with the formation being an exception rather than the rule, it invites greater scrutiny whenever it shows a weakness.




But perhaps that and other orthodoxies need to be challenged.

Another key one is the idea that controlling the ball and the midfield are prerequisites to being an effective Premier League team. Let’s call this the Pepification of modern football.

Spurs are not a team who hoover up possession — having 50 per cent of the ball yesterday, and just under 40 per cent against Chelsea — nor do they dominate the midfield very often. It’s hard to do that when you’re outnumbered most weeks.

But as the numbers from these last 14 matches show, they are still finding ways to be very effective.

“For sure we are trying to do different situations, and also during the game we did this,” Conte said after the Wolves match when asked if the lack of midfield control was a concern. “Maybe for someone it was difficult to understand this because we are talking about tactical situations, but we did; and also in the second half it was really difficult for Wolverhampton to find the right solution to avoid and score and create chances.”

The final claim is certainly valid, with Wolves offering very little threat in the second period. They also struggled to test goalkeeper Hugo Lloris in the first, though that was more down to their lack of cutting edge than effective Spurs defending.

Conte went on to insist he and the team are working to make life more difficult for opposition midfields, and it will be interesting to see if the situation changes as and when summer signing Yves Bissouma is deemed ready to start matches. He has experience of playing in a midfield two for previous club Brighton and can be more disruptive than either of Hojbjerg and Bentancur.

The counter-argument is that Spurs have been second best in the first half of back-to-back matches and the result of both could easily have gone in a different direction.

Returning to those earlier questions of whether this is a fundamental issue Spurs need to worry about, perhaps the answer is that it’s only fundamental if they have designs on really competing with Liverpool and Manchester City for the title. The evidence suggests their current way of playing is enough to make them the third or fourth best team in the Premier League.

Over the course of this season, they may need to find other ways of structuring their midfield if they want to take that next step, and it’ll be interesting to see if they stiffen it up in games against sides such as Liverpool and City (not that they did badly at the Etihad or Anfield last season with a midfield two).

But for the moment, even if it can feel alarming to see opponents dominating that area, Tottenham are progressing nicely. They’ve won seven points from games they picked up zero from in last season’s equivalent fixtures and are expected to bring in another attacker now that Bryan Gil is close to joining Valencia.

Spurs' results this season vs 2021-22
TEAM2021-22 RESULT2022-23 RESULT
SouthamptonL 3-2W 4-1
ChelseaL 3-0D 2-2
WolvesL 2-0W 1-0
Whether that will be someone who can also play as a No 10 as well as wide will be interesting, as the lack of creativity from midfield has been an issue for them under Conte at times.

Thankfully, like their other areas for improvement, it’s not yet one that’s affecting their results this season.

(Top photo: Tottenham Hotspur FC/Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)
 

jd2010

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12-1 is a lack of creativity on our part, we were too safe in possession. Which improved after HT.

My feeling is our CM group is unfairly maligned on here by people incorrectly attributing their role.
They have a role to do and that is control the game. The creativity comes from that. They did that in the second half.

Having Sanchez in the Romero role also hurts our build up massively. Not a slight on a Sanchez defending at all. But more the fact that Romero is class on the ball and with our CMs lacking that quality. Bentancur has quality but we lacked control of the game for him to show it.
 

Art Vandelay_

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jd2010

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No doubt got the best draw from pot 1. Got a pretty good pot 3 draw. But possibly the hardest from pot 4. Good even group that we should go through. But 3 very tricky away ties. Won't be easy
 

Art Vandelay_

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Feels less like Conte and more the bad Jose games. Just sitting deep and giving them plenty of ball.
 

omgfridge

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Feels less like Conte and more the bad Jose games. Just sitting deep and giving them plenty of ball.

Yep, giving them a s**t load of chances. Lucky we've defended well. I'm glad Sanchez isn't taking any risks, just hoofing it away instead of making a dumb mistake.

Kulu's assist was class.
 

jd2010

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Job done again. They didn't have the quality to truly threaten. Kulu the clear man of the match followed by possibly Perisic or Kane. Expecting a few changes midweek
 

sabre_ac

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Barkley was just released by Chelsea as a free agent, from memory Spurs were on for his signature until Chelsea flew in and grabbed him, the childish side of my nature immediately thought "that's what you get, bucket loads of cash, no career".
 

jd2010

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Lloris
Sanchez Dier Lenglet
Doherty Bissouma PEH Sessengon
Kulusevski Kane Richarlison
 

Art Vandelay_

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Yes please. Much better than Adama or James.

Gives us plenty of wide options at RW/LW and RWB/LWB