Also, why Manchester United must move for John Stones, why Chelsea should recall Patrick Bamford and why Francis Coquelin’s absence will hit Arsenal hard.
If you have anything to add on any subject, you know what to do – post on the Your Say forum now.
Praise aplenty for improving Firmino
Roberto Firmino has made unbelievable improvement under Jurgen Klopp.
He has excellent game intelligence and he is showing signs of linking with Coutinho & others.
I’ve absolutely no doubts that he’ll be a very valuable player for us in the next few seasons.
Jurgen Klopp is all about getting the ball into the space at the right time so that no defender is there.
Roberto Firmino has the intelligence, the movement and the timing to get there at the right time and then when he gets there he knows exactly what to do with it in relation to everyone else. I doubt Benteke has this ability at present. Studge probably has too – and even Ings.
The potential combo of Firmino, Sturridge, Benteke (and Ings when he’s fit next year) is starting to excite. That’s without mentioning Lallana and Coutinho – and then the potential of Origi too when Klopp starts to mould him.
Coquelin absence huge for Arsenal
What Arsene Wenger doesn’t understand, is that the holding role is a specialist position. Its like a goalkeeper, so your either a holding player, or your not.
It’s not like Ozil being a capable player on the left hand side, despite his natural position being in the hole, or Sanchez being able to play upfront despite being more comfortable on the flank. The holding role cannot be done by Ramsey, Arteta, or Chambers. The only defensive midfielders at the club other than Coquelin are Flamini and Beilik.
Basic requirements are, you need to tackle, intercept, be mobile. Furthermore, you need understand when to commit to a tackle, or when to hold back. You need to strike the balance between marking a player, or filling space. Arteta doesnt have the basic skill set to play the role, or the understanding of the role (useless player). I feel Chambers and Ramsey just wouldnt understand the position if they were asked to anchor the midfield.
So basically the choice is a veteran player who is past it, or Beilik, who has never played first team football. However, Flamini is only 31 and brings with him an understanding of the role, and the drive and commitment needed. He isnt very quick, but he somewhat mobile and runs.
However, I dont trust Wenger to get it right, as when Coquelin signaled to come off, my jaw dropped when I saw Arteta went on instead of Flamini.
Its not bad enough Wenger neglects the position in the first place, but he even manages to mess up the response to the crisis of Coquelin being injured.
Is what world isnt Flamini the obvious choice to play in Coquelins absence? Well Wenger’s apparently!
Chelsea should turn to Bamford
I think Chelsea should look to a few strikers who’ve broken into teams at a tender young age.
I can think of many from recent and yesteryear. We could look at the likes of Fowler, Shearer, Owen, Kane, Walcott, Rooney these are all strikers who broke into the top flight and have continued to score from a very young age
I would point to a certain Mr Bamford who has, like these more luminary names, scored at every level he’s played in.
What he is missing is a run of games in a blue shirt, an opportunity offered to the names listed above. Unlucky with injury this season, but he’s also netted agains the big boys in the cups.
Between Falcao and Bamford, who would we have rather seen in the blue shirt this season? This is where the CFC youth policy fails utterly and miserably.
Impressive Everton can finish fourth
Saw Jamie Carragher’s comments about Everton last night on MNF and I largely agree with him.
I think Roberto Martinez is doing a pretty good job, and has a good balance to his side. Lukaku is also starting to score pretty regularly as well.
Whether their current form will last, or whether it will peter out will be interesting to see, but, if people are considering the likes of Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham as potential CL qualifiers, then I certainly wouldn’t discount our Blue mates from pushing for the 4th spot with the teams I’ve just mentioned.
The league is really interesting this year, and is very unpredictable. Good to see for a change.
United MUST make Stones approach
When John Stones decides to leave Everton we have to make an offer. His talent for his age is immense and we can’t let him go on and form the foundation for one of our rivals’ defences for the next decade or so without a fight.
I had my doubts about him, I thought he was overrated at the season’s opening but I have watched him properly and this fella is the real deal.
We must at least attempt to buy him.
UEFA’s greatest-ever Champions League team
UEFA have compiled their greatest ever Champion League team: 4-3-3
Casillas, Lahm, Nesta, Puyol, Ramos, Iniesta, Xavi, Gerrard, Ronaldo, Messi, Henry
Subs: Buffon, Terry, Nedved, Ronaldinho, Kaka, Zidane, Ibrahimovic.
No Scholes or Lampard? Thats one argument settled at least….
What would your team be?
Leicester and their tricky run of games….
I think I read somewhere that in 2015 Leicester, although being up there points wise, have only played 2 or 3 of the big boys and when they did come up against them they lost a la Arsenal. I haven’t checked this so don’t quote me on it.
In their next 6 games or so they face Utd, Spurs, Chelsea, City and Liverpool I think so I’d be surprised if they’re top 4 at the start of 2016. You never know though and momentum is a powerful attribute.
Spurs could easily win the league. Their youngsters are playing without fear which you can’t replicate in older squads. I’m just hoping its not the same as every season when we think we’re in for a blockbuster but by March all the positions are pretty much sorted…
…..Leicester being top is absolutely no fluke
Leicester? Seen some of their goals and play and with the squad they have? They play well and technical, its not luck, running and bullying, its not route one, long ball, not boring, its end to end exciting stuff
think a loot is made of “technical” ability other than the top top players and teams MOST teams in the world in ANY league are not all that technical or technical in a different way due to the requirements of that league
when we lose internationally its seldom men against boys with the other teams “technical” ability running rings round us and making us look ordinary, if anything they just do the BASICS better and more consistently than English players.
Palace undone by excellent Sunderland
Palace played absolutely awfully and displayed problems that we all knew about.
We can’t play that badly twice and should do Newcastle in the next match.
That said, WELL DONE SUNDERLAND you deserved the 3 points and surprisingly your defence was brill.
Keep it going and I’ve no doubt you’ll stay in the Premier League.