EPL 2012-2013

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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Fri Feb 15, 2013 7:04 am
  • What to do about Liverpool.... I have several opinions on this, so bear with me. None of them are "sack the manager, buy Neymar" either.

    First, with Rodgers... He deserves another year, as would any manager thrust into his position. The team he inherited lacked quality in several pieces and are unfit to run the system he prefers. He has been naive in some matches (the first West Brom game, the first game and last 20 of the second with Arsenal) but in many regards his players have let him down.

    As far as quality, the team needs a consistent midfielder (Ericksen?), a consistent winger (I like the idea of Julian Draxler, despite his being young), a new left back, a new centerback and a new keeper. All 5 of these need to be high quality players. And here is where Liverpool is both strong and weak. When we examine the PL, there is really only one "strong" team, and that is United. And why? They are very experienced, everywhere. They have proven, tested goal scorers, a manager willing to play to his teams strengths and players across the board who have already won games. Liverpool is just not that club right now. The average age is 23. Many of the players called on to impact highly competitive games are very young and new to the rigors of the PL. Jordan Henderson and Joe Allen being the main culprits, but it doesnt stop there. Borini, Coutinho, Sterling, Suso, Shelvey, Wisdom may all become very good PL players, but need the time on the field. This time to gain experience has come and will come in big matches. We can assume that their will be negative results. There is no way around that.

    But this needs to be coupled with another, bigger problem that I am beginning to (fretfully) realize. Im not sure the 4-3-3 and its components in the way that Rodgers/Wenger want to run it can be successful in the PL. In nearly every match that Liverpool has been in they have been better for longer stretches of time than their opponent, and yet been undone by the simplest of mistakes. (Wenger's Arsenal teams of the very near past have succumbed to the same issues.... defensive breakdowns have undone title/cup chances)

    The 433 in the way Rodgers plays it asks that its team defends by possessing the ball for long stretches of time. this involved intricate, tight triangles throughout the field, but mostly through the middle third and into the attacking third. And this is where I see our biggest problem... Liverpools players are not geared to do this, neither mentally nor technically. the triangles break down far too quickly, leaving gaping holes in their shape. the triangles are far too big, never truly unbalancing the other team's shape, leaving Liverpool without options after a few passes. In reality, Liverpool become weaker and weaker with each pass they make through the midfield. And often their decision making leaves them more exposed or at the very least shapeless in attack, with some players moving to build around the ball only to see it pinged long in the very English manner. Look at what United do at the moment. Sit, defend in shape, hit on the wings with counters... top of the league. When Liverpool do push the ball, they have been undone by their own lack of quality near goal (as illustrated in the recent stat that indicate them as bottom in the league in shot on target percentage, and more clearly their last 5 matches, all of which should have been Liverpool victories). This combination of poor finishing, naive defending and disorganization (lack of tactical understanding and technical ability) in shape in key moments is the basis of our mediocrity. The issue is less about formation and system and more about philosophy.

    The recent question I have mulled is whether Liverpools current players are the issue, or the players in the system are the issue (meaning would the current squad be more successful in a different system/philosophy). Would Barca succeed in their system in the PL? Hard to say, but it needs to be said that even they have gone "longer" this season. I think a better 433 system to emulate would be Real Madrids. Liverpool's current players would be more suited to a 4231, with deeper lying midfielders and more direct attacking. If Rodgers is insistent on the Barca version, he will need an overhaul at the positions I listed above with true world class quality

    Either way, this is my long answer. Rodgers is the right man (for now). However, he needs to balance his system with the players... or the fans need to be patient while both learn. This is the issue with Liverpool as a brand. Its fans are buried in its past glories. and despite the fact that those glories came with homegrown mostly English Liverpool players, many Reds fans expect the club to purchase the worlds best, regardless of price tag. This is contrary to anything the club has ever done. But many fans scream "But we are Liverpool" without really knowing what that means, or where it comes from.

    Personally I can wait. but next summer I expect atleast three very strong new players in and a renewed philosophy. I expect top 4, I expect Rodgers to have gained a better understanding of life in the Prem and to be willing to adjust and adopt to his players strengths while implementing a system that can be successful.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Feb 16, 2013 10:01 am
  • Image

    Why does God hate Arsenal?
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Feb 16, 2013 10:31 am
  • peachesenregalia wrote:And before you say something about Arsenal being 'the better team', just stop. I'm tired of hearing that excuse, even by Liverpool fans. The better team is the one that wins.

    But but but possession and shots count for goals right?
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Feb 16, 2013 10:49 am
  • You guys are bastards, kicking me while I'm down.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Feb 16, 2013 10:52 am
  • Just for once don't crack on Arsenal, and not turn it on me and make this worse for someone who's already feeling like crap.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Feb 16, 2013 11:08 am
  • Gatehawk wrote:Just for once don't crack on Arsenal, and not turn it on me and make this worse for someone who's already feeling like crap.

    Where's the fun in that?

    And to be honest you had to see this coming right?
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Feb 16, 2013 11:37 am
  • peachesenregalia wrote:Could be worse, Gate. You could support Celtic and condone paedophilia.


    And we're off.... let's see where this one goes ladies and gents
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Feb 16, 2013 1:08 pm
  • Uncle Si wrote:
    Gatehawk wrote:Just for once don't crack on Arsenal, and not turn it on me and make this worse for someone who's already feeling like crap.

    Where's the fun in that?

    And to be honest you had to see this coming right?


    How the f*** could I see this coming, for like 99% of the 1st half the ball was in Blackburn's half of the field. It was like they were playing a 8-1-1 formation, hell I joked at halftime that it was Arsenal vs Blackburn Bus Depot. And then Blackburn get the $h!t of $h!t goals you could have ever imagined them to get. Arsenal should have scored countless times, but were denied by either crap finishing or the god damned crossbar. Everything went against Arsenal despite how one sided the game looked. I'm f***ing pissed and disappointed at everything from Arsenal to the refereeing to Blackburn for essentially doing next to nothing and yet getting the rewards that Arsenal should have gotten. Now unless Arsenal puts forth some magic and slips past Bayern Munich, and I still think they can, me and other Arsenal fans are gonna be forced to listen to the bastards mock Arsenal for not having a trophy for the 8th season, it's actually to the point where it's the mockery is like Arsenal are the only team in existance without a trophy or they have the longest trophy drought in history, and the people who want to do that are pathetic and stupid(and the majority are also refusing to admit their own club's problems). I know nobody wants their team to be in the situation Arsenal are in, and it's annoying to hear the same bullcrap that spews out of everyone's mouths when negative events happen. I'm completely fed up with Arsenal fans that are whining about the same exact $h!t that they did after the Bradford City loss, you know what's similar about it? Both games Arsenal didn't field a weak squad, they fielded the strongest squad available and in the end it just wasn't enough. And yet people feel compelled to b!@ch and moan about the same exact $h!t, and it's not restricted to just cup losses, it's any loss. And then there's the complaints about transfers, people are still questioning why Wenger didn't go and buy a like for like replacement for Van Persie, those same people fail to realize that there really isn't much of a difference. Arsenal may be a spot lower in the standings but there's no goal scoring dip, they've spread out the goal scoring burden. Despite that, would I have liked Arsenal to win a trophy, of course I would've, no sane person wouldn't want a trophy. Do I like the fact that Arsenal might have to settle for Wenger's "trophy" place of Top 4? Not really, I thought Arsenal were good enough for 2nd. Should Wenger leave or be fired? I still doubt that he'll ever be fired, but walking away seems like the only reasonable option for him should Arsenal lose to Bayern. I don't think anyone would want him back for next season if he gets no trophies. I am not going to be happy about what happened today and it'll be a while till I get over it cause I thought the FA Cup and League Cup were gonna be Arsenal's for the taking this year but I was obviously wrong. And I don't need morons like Peach to be a d*ck about it.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Feb 16, 2013 1:55 pm
  • peachesenregalia wrote:Cry me a river, Gate. Then piss off. Just agree that Arsenal are $h!t. I've said many times that Liverpool are $h!t. Nothing wrong with admitting your teams flaws. Doesn't make you any less a supporter.

    Wenger's not gonna walk away, and I'm not convinced that he's all that's wrong. They just don't have the players. Same as Liverpool.

    Lastly, Arsenal aren't going to beat Bayern. The sooner you accept that, the better.


    First, I seriously hate to use this as an example, but people did say the same about Chelsea.

    And I'll be the first to admit that Wenger isn't the sole problem. I've hated the board and more importantly Stan Kroenke for a while. So how's about you shut the **** up and piss off yourself!
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Feb 16, 2013 2:01 pm
  • Epic rant there Gate....

    Let me try this another way. How could you not have seen another Arsenal implosion coming given what the team has already succumbed to this year? Why would you have thought that this Arsenal team would be different than the 8 years that preceded it.

    If you flow back a bit to my Liverpool post you'll see the two teams are not dissimilar. They are both tactically naive. And while Arsenal is a bit more gifted overall, if the ball doesnt go in for them early then weaker teams (like Blackburn for you, WBA for us) will wait it out and hit on the counters. This is professional effing footy Gate. You still seem to think that out-possessing and shooting a team are somehow an indication your team is dominating, when in truth the other teams are smart enough to let you come into them, and wait. Could Blackburn play you straight up? no. so they didnt... and won.

    Its $h!t Gate... ive basically resigned myself to watching Liverpool "learn" this season. 85 % of their matchplay this season they have been equal to or better than their opponent.. yet they manage to lose (or lose by draw). why?

    Because free flowing attacking football is not always the way to go. Wenger refuses to be learn that and I fear Rodgers may be too stubborn as well
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Feb 17, 2013 11:42 am
  • 5 Reasons today has started off well. Gerrard, Coutinho, Enrique, Suarez, Sturridge.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Feb 17, 2013 1:02 pm
  • peachesenregalia wrote:
    InSuarezWeTrust wrote:5 Reasons today has started off well. Gerrard, Coutinho, Enrique, Suarez, Sturridge.


    Don't care. It was a very weak Swansea side and I'm not going to let myself get excited. We're looking at a finish in the 6-10 range in the league this year, which was what I predicted at first. I just hope we can keep a hold of the players we need to keep a hold of, ie Suarez, Sturridge, Sterling, Coutinho, Agger and Johnson.


    Don't read too much into it. I don't think this was the launching pad for our champions league campaign or anything, but its just nice to see a 5-0 result when your team has been playing like hot garbage for an extended period of time. 6th place is probably the ceiling for us this year, hopefully we can make some astute signings in the summer and push forward next year.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Feb 17, 2013 3:35 pm
  • Why I love my Liverpool.. yes we won 5-0 and scored one of the more beautiful team goals you'll see (Enriques). At halftime we had reached these infuriating landmarks:

    We were up 1-0 despite taking 23 shots... yep. 23 shots in 45 minutesand one goal... a pen no less. Those 23 shots made us the first team in any of the European top flights to hit 500 at goal

    Still. Fun to watch, eben against the Swans JV team. Points are points. Coutinho looks promising
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Mon Feb 18, 2013 11:12 am
  • We are cursed. That's the only explanation.[/quote]


    We are not cursed.

    While I am a relatively new diehard Liverpool supporter compared to many, we all as hardcore sports fans know that our team can go through multiple decades of mediocrity and general lack of success. We all sign up for it. It's why I choose the celebrate the small victories, as meaningless as they may be, because it could be another month before it happens again.

    Will it ever be like the "Old days" in Liverpool where success was pretty much a guarantee? Who knows, but I choose to believe that it will because it sure beats believing the alternative.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Mon Feb 18, 2013 12:25 pm
  • InSuarezWeTrust wrote:We are cursed. That's the only explanation.



    I'm sure Man Utd fans thought they were cursed in the 70's and 80's, Celtic in the 90's, Arsenal fans probably feel that way just now. That's football for you, it runs in cycles. Sometimes all it takes is a bit of luck such as some great youngsters coming through or giving a manager a bit of time- i.e Ferguson once being a game away from the sack.

    It will be interesting to see what happens when Ferguson retires, I don't think any other manager can build so many successful teams and maintain that success. I therefore think Man Utd will still be good but not as often. If the Premier League or UEFA have the balls to put a salary cap or debt to earnings ratio it will be interesting to see what happens to Chelsea and City as well.

    Liverpool have the support and with it the money. I think they are handicapped by Anfield though due to it's size and should have at least a 60,000 stadium to maximise that revenue. That is a matter that should have been addressed years ago. The mediocrity won't last forever though.

    Arsenal have the makings of a good side but i'm not convinced by the spine of the team. Campbell, Viera and Henry have never been effectively replaced. For all Wenger has done for the club, it might be time for him to step aside and bring in a new coach with fresh ideas and inspiration.

    That's my opinion though.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Tue Feb 26, 2013 3:08 pm
  • Gatehawk wrote:Who else thinks Spurs this season rely as much on Bale as Arsenal did last year with RvP? Because to me, it seems like Spurs would be in a cluster**** of trouble without him.


    Bale has been freakin' awesome of late. Certainly a van Persie-like impact. The whole team's been playing well though, for the most part. Spurs are allowing the fewest shots on goal of any team in the league, which obviously helps too. But yeah, Bale's certainly earned us some points recently that we wouldn't have got without him.

    Here's a good article about Bale and Spurs which does something almost unheard of in the British media: give AVB some credit.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/blog ... CMP=twt_gu
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Mar 02, 2013 4:25 pm
  • Thrilled by today. Brilliant from Suarez and Coutinho. Outstanding by Pepe. Like when this team shows its class. Come on Spurs, set up next weekend with a stomp tomorrow...
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Mar 02, 2013 5:05 pm
  • Uncle Si wrote:Thrilled by today. Brilliant from Suarez and Coutinho. Outstanding by Pepe. Like when this team shows its class. Come on Spurs, set up next weekend with a stomp tomorrow...


    Awesome showing by the Reds today, pretty boring second half actually as the game had already been put to bed.

    Can someone explain the "fair play" rule to me? I heard Chelsea currently lead, but won't likely need it and Liverpool are second, and can get into the Europa league through this?

    Thanks in advance.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sat Mar 02, 2013 8:05 pm
  • The Fair Play rule is a mixture of player discipline, FA fines and such as well as fan and stadium behavior (i think) Arsenal (Not Chelsea) are first I believe. We are second. More than likely 6th in the table will result in Europa. We are close. Need to be consistent. But with only Chelsea and Spurs (both at home) in the top 10 left on our schedule we have a favorable run in
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 03, 2013 12:43 am
  • Uncle Si wrote:Thrilled by today. Brilliant from Suarez and Coutinho. Outstanding by Pepe. Like when this team shows its class. Come on Spurs, set up next weekend with a stomp tomorrow...


    I like the way that Rodgers is doing things at Anfield. I think you'll be back up near the top very soon.

    And come on you Spurs! Before we worry about next week, let's knock Woolwich out of this season's race.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 03, 2013 2:43 am
  • Rumors are coming out that a Middle Eastern group are looking into the possibility of offering a 1.5 billion pound bid for Arsenal. Moreso this apparently has been going on for the last 4 months.

    Now if this is true, and I seriously don't know whether or not there's any weight whatsoever, I'm a bit split on what to think. I'm not someone who likes teams "buying" trophies, but I despise Kroenke's running of the club that he's the majority owner of and want him gone no matter how it happens.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/footba ... weeks.html
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 03, 2013 3:01 am
  • Gatehawk wrote:Rumors are coming out that a Middle Eastern group are looking into the possibility of offering a 1.5 billion pound bid for Arsenal. Moreso this apparently has been going on for the last 4 months.

    Now if this is true, and I seriously don't know whether or not there's any weight whatsoever, I'm a bit split on what to think. I'm not someone who likes teams "buying" trophies, but I despise Kroenke's running of the club that he's the majority owner of and want him gone no matter how it happens.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/footba ... weeks.html


    It's all getting a bit boring, isn't it. The premier league is in desperate need of a salary cap.

    And the sooner someone invents a viable alternative energy source the better. Hopefully a few weeks after Arsenal get sold.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 03, 2013 8:26 am
  • Two things Gate... Arsenal has money now. They just don't spend it like Chelsea and City. FFP will limit the spending of clubs in the near future


    Your team is five. Built much like Spurs. Id be inclined to want to keep it that way
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 03, 2013 8:32 am
  • Uncle Si wrote:Two things Gate... Arsenal has money now. They just don't spend it like Chelsea and City. FFP will limit the spending of clubs in the near future


    Your team is five. Built much like Spurs. Id be inclined to want to keep it that way


    Really the only good thing I can definitely see coming from this, is that lazy bastard Stan Kroenke not owning any part of Arsenal anymore if it does happen.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 03, 2013 9:01 am
  • peachesenregalia wrote:I just don't see it happening, Gate. Arsenal aren't in desperate need of cash. They have a new stadium, and aren't in debt. They're probably one of the best run teams from a financial perpective in the whole FA.


    But if Kroenke truely is only in this for the money, then it could definitely happen. Like I said before, I'm in the middle. I doubt Usmanov would sell his stake in the club, but Kroenke is a whole other matter.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 03, 2013 11:00 am
  • Great match. Great result for Spurs. Poor defending by Arsenal in that 5 minute spurt. Only themselves to blame there. And now Liverpool, Chelsea, Everton and Arsenal to battle it out for 4 through 7 with the 11 to go. Liverpool have the easiest run in, with Spurs and Chelsea at home as the only fixtures left in the top 10. Spurs actually have actually one of the tougher run ins, but its hard to argue with how they are playing right now.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 03, 2013 12:59 pm
  • I sadly missed the game today and had to settle for listening to it on the radio. It sounded like a good game with both sides blowing good chances. I wish we'd stop letting Mertesacker score!

    Obviously I'm delighted with the result and even more delighted with the 7 point lead over 5th place At the same time last year we were just 1 point above Arsenal and still almost held on. While 5th place is still distinctly possible it would now need us to lose a few games and both Arsenal and Chelsea to up their performance over the final 10 weeks.

    And unlike last year our manager isn't pimping himself out for the England and Chelsea jobs while the team looks exhausted, disinterested and devoid of ideas.

    I'm nervously optimistic.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 03, 2013 1:33 pm
  • peachesenregalia wrote:I suppose Liverpool have a puncher's chance at 4th, but I highly doubt it'll happen. Still, stranger things, I suppose. We're scoring goals now, and if the defense can be shored up for the run in, you never know what could happen. Look at how improbably Arsenal's chances were last season.


    I think 5th place is a fairly realistic season ending result. Europa here we come! :/
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 03, 2013 3:24 pm
  • peachesenregalia wrote:
    InSuarezWeTrust wrote:
    peachesenregalia wrote:I suppose Liverpool have a puncher's chance at 4th, but I highly doubt it'll happen. Still, stranger things, I suppose. We're scoring goals now, and if the defense can be shored up for the run in, you never know what could happen. Look at how improbably Arsenal's chances were last season.


    I think 5th place is a fairly realistic season ending result. Europa here we come! :/


    I honestly hate the Europa league. I mean, it's money and it's a chance to compete in Europe and scout some guys, but I still hate it.


    I REALLY like Coutinho. I like him on the wing in a 4-4-2 or 4-2-3-1, and I like him up front with Suarez and Sturridge in a 4-3-3. Sturridge was another good buy, I reckon. Allen seems to be finding his way a bit more, which is good. I think Shelvey and probably Henderson are gone in the summer. Probably Downing, too. Time to sut our losses and let Rodgers bring in guys that will fit what he wants to do. I've liked the Sturridge and Coutinho buys, and I think guys like Assaidi and Borini will provide good cover in the long run.



    I see Henderson staying, and Shelvey may get a loan deal. I dont see them selling him. Hes very useful and still young (same as Henderson). I do see Downing being sold, although its great to see him adding an impact to wins.

    Coutinho's two assists indicate his class, and how he fits in with Suarez. I find that duo, with Sturridge, exciting enough that coupled with a Europa league stint may bring in another two dynamic, impactful players. I know you dont like Europa, peaches, but it serves a very useful purpose for the club in developing players as well as showing progress. I think many young players enamored with Liverpool can see 5th place and Europa as just one step away from being back to its former dominance... and for that I am excited.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Tue Mar 05, 2013 10:42 am
  • peachesenregalia wrote:
    InSuarezWeTrust wrote:
    peachesenregalia wrote:I suppose Liverpool have a puncher's chance at 4th, but I highly doubt it'll happen. Still, stranger things, I suppose. We're scoring goals now, and if the defense can be shored up for the run in, you never know what could happen. Look at how improbably Arsenal's chances were last season.


    I think 5th place is a fairly realistic season ending result. Europa here we come! :/


    I honestly hate the Europa league. I mean, it's money and it's a chance to compete in Europe and scout some guys, but I still hate it.

    I REALLY like Coutinho. I like him on the wing in a 4-4-2 or 4-2-3-1, and I like him up front with Suarez and Sturridge in a 4-3-3. Sturridge was another good buy, I reckon. Allen seems to be finding his way a bit more, which is good. I think Shelvey and probably Henderson are gone in the summer. Probably Downing, too. Time to sut our losses and let Rodgers bring in guys that will fit what he wants to do. I've liked the Sturridge and Coutinho buys, and I think guys like Assaidi and Borini will provide good cover in the long run.


    It was better as the UEFA cup when it was a straight knockout competition. The Europa League structure doesn't work, too many meaningless games and the money is pennies compared to the ECL. It's not like there are bad teams in it, a lot of good Spanish and Italian teams but it is marketed so crap and no English team really gives a crap about it.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Wed Mar 06, 2013 6:56 am
  • Spurs will test "no English team gives a crap about it" this week. They are in an interesting dilemma with the first leg against Inter on Thursday, then a crucial away league tie at Liverpool on Sunday. They are in 3rd, need to get points to keep their Champs league position. But also are now deep in the Euro League tourney and play a very strong Inter squad.

    What Spurs do with their Thursday lineup will speak volumes to how they perceive the Euro tournament (Im not disagreeing with Glasgow either). Will they rest important players to be better prepared for the Liverpool game and trying to secure that crucial top 4 spot? Or will they put a strong squad out and try and grab a home lead in the first leg? or risk both....

    anyways, I see their particular position rather daunting, considering, and will be interested to see what choices AVB makes.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Wed Mar 06, 2013 12:46 pm
  • peachesenregalia wrote:
    Uncle Si wrote:Spurs will test "no English team gives a crap about it" this week. They are in an interesting dilemma with the first leg against Inter on Thursday, then a crucial away league tie at Liverpool on Sunday. They are in 3rd, need to get points to keep their Champs league position. But also are now deep in the Euro League tourney and play a very strong Inter squad.

    What Spurs do with their Thursday lineup will speak volumes to how they perceive the Euro tournament (Im not disagreeing with Glasgow either). Will they rest important players to be better prepared for the Liverpool game and trying to secure that crucial top 4 spot? Or will they put a strong squad out and try and grab a home lead in the first leg? or risk both....

    anyways, I see their particular position rather daunting, considering, and will be interested to see what choices AVB makes.


    Yeah, it's a really perplexing situation, but I think ultimately, you have to rest players against inter. the money they'll get from a CL spot next year would far outweigh the money they might get for progressing to the next round of the Europa league. they'll be looking to solidify their position in 3rd more than anything. i think they'll field a weakened side against Inter, defend and hope to nick a cheeky goal on the break. Maybe hope for a 0-0 or a 1-1 draw, something like that, maybe even a 1-0 win. then they'll field their best XI against Liverpool on Sunday, and depending on their next league opponent, field a strong side in Inter in the return leg.

    That's what I'd do, anyway


    I agree, Peaches.

    I'm going to assume that they have Champions League qualification as the primary goal for the season and at this stage they are well placed but still far from assured of achieving that objective. Therefore, I really hope that Bale, Vertonghen, Walker and Dembele are rested, lennon will probably need to start if Bale's out, and Loris will no doubt sit in favour of Friedel.

    The objective on Thursday will surely be to keep Inter goalless, or to concede one tops.

    While I find the group stages of the Europa League pretty dull, I like the final 32 onwards. I really hope we can beat Inter, even if it makes our run in more difficult. But, the league has to come first.

    It's also worth bearing in mind that Inter are tied for 4th at the moment (with a pretty good Lazio, and with Fiorentina and Roma close behind) and may well rest players this Thursday too.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Wed Mar 06, 2013 1:30 pm
  • I suggest all in for Spurs on Thursday. Put the top lads in and let them rip. You must defend the Lane from those nasty Italians! They helped start the Big One for godsakes! They insulted the Queen! They insulted Kate! you must grit the bit and play it out.... maybe play a double header with Inter and Stoke.

    We will see you Sunday!
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Wed Mar 06, 2013 1:53 pm
  • Uncle Si wrote:I suggest all in for Spurs on Thursday. Put the top lads in and let them rip. You must defend the Lane from those nasty Italians! They helped start the Big One for godsakes! They insulted the Queen! They insulted Kate! you must grit the bit and play it out.... maybe play a double header with Inter and Stoke.

    We will see you Sunday!


    Ha ha! Although I'm pretty sure that last time we played Inter they only actually had one actual, real, live Italian in their squad!

    And yeah, I'd definitely rather have our players take their chances against Inter than our mates Shawcross, Palacios and Adam at Stoke. That also has the added attraction of not having to listen to Tony Pulis doing his best 'Steve Bruce whinge mixed with Alex Ferguson hypocrisy' impression in the post match interview.

    I can't wait for Sunday. I'll be watching with mates in London, including the guy I go to Spurs matches with (City and Southampton coming up on our itinerary) in the aftermath of another mate's stag party before crawling back catch a coach back to dirty old Bristol. There will be couple of United fans there as well to boo Liverpool (yes they are British, no they are not from Manchester, of course). Should be a good 'un!
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Wed Mar 06, 2013 3:12 pm
  • Apparently Inter have several of their first team defenders out injured. Maybe Spurs should play Bale...
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Wed Mar 06, 2013 4:20 pm
  • On the case...
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Thu Mar 07, 2013 9:29 am
  • Hawkspur wrote:On the case...



    well done sir

    ``There is a lot of rest time between a Thursday and a Sunday (when Spurs play Liverpool.''- AVB pre-match interview
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Thu Mar 07, 2013 11:55 am
  • Uncle Si wrote:
    Hawkspur wrote:On the case...



    ``There is a lot of rest time between a Thursday and a Sunday (when Spurs play Liverpool.''- AVB pre-match interview


    I like this quote. I see it as being both a refreshing change from the whingeing of Wenger et al about their players being tired and a soundbite to let the team know that they are expected to show up with some effort and energy for both games.

    I'm pretty sure that he'll be resting players tonight when all is said and done, though.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Thu Mar 07, 2013 12:42 pm
  • Or maybe he really meant it. It's a full strength side minus Lloris tonight.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:27 pm
  • Hawkspur wrote:Or maybe he really meant it. It's a full strength side minus Lloris tonight.


    Seems to be working.... AVB will be able to rest 2 by halftime, maybe all three by 60 at this rate.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Thu Mar 07, 2013 3:40 pm
  • I'll revisit the discussion from a couple of weeks ago about the decline of the premier league to add that, based on tonight's match, the English league may well worry have reason to about being eclipsed by Spain or even Germany eventually, but they have very little to be concerned about Serie A. That Inter display tonight was as bad as any I've seen this season. Spurs could easily have scored at least a couple more. Inter had one good chance and that was it.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Thu Mar 07, 2013 5:06 pm
  • Good to see AVB take this tournament seriously. It has been a poor year for English teams with a lack of quality. However, next year the new Sky/BT deal kicks in and I expect most EPL teams to spend a small/big fortune. This might improve English teams performance in Europe. I expect Man City to do better in Europe next year once Mancini, who I do not rate gets sacked.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Thu Mar 07, 2013 5:15 pm
  • Glasgow Seahawk wrote:Good to see AVB take this tournament seriously. It has been a poor year for English teams with a lack of quality. However, next year the new Sky/BT deal kicks in and I expect most EPL teams to spend a small/big fortune. This might improve English teams performance in Europe. I expect Man City to do better in Europe next year once Mancini, who I do not rate gets sacked.


    Inter certainly didn't appear to be taking the tournament seriously. They did, however, double the number of Italians in the team from last time we played them, to a grand total of 2.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Fri Mar 08, 2013 8:46 am
  • Had this conversation with some friends yesterday while watching the Chelsea match. Hawkspurs new reflection on the strength of the PL over other leagues mad me think of it again.

    Who is the most disappointing newcomer to the PL this season? (Player who was not in the PL last year)

    I said Eden Hazard.... there was alot of consternation and indignation... then realization that he really hadnt contributed much since earning some pens early in the season.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Fri Mar 08, 2013 9:28 am
  • peachesenregalia wrote:I agree about Hazard, Simon. Big disappointment for me. I'm gonna throw Giroud out there also. Lots of hype for him but he hasn't really produced for me.



    (that ought to awaken the beast)

    Agreed about Giroud, and one of my Arsenal friends said him initially. He has the most potential of the Arsenal transfers from the summer and has really brought the least, despite seemingly being involved far more than Carzola and Podolski....

    Podolski seems to be tapering off as well, as I had predicted. Hes become very inconsistent again. Almost Steward Downing but with goals.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Fri Mar 08, 2013 12:12 pm
  • peachesenregalia wrote:I'm really not trying to wind Gate up, but I recall all the fervor about Arsenal's signings last summer, and I said at the time they were gonna be much much worse without RVP carrying the load. Now, obviously losing a player of RVP's caliber will weaken any side, but the signings haven't produced nearly what they needed to.


    Im not disagreeing... but we now sensy Gate can be.

    Does Gylfi Siggurdson fall into this list?
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Fri Mar 08, 2013 12:52 pm
  • I'm sure they expected much more out of Sigurddson, but he's been looking quite a bit better over the last few games. With him and Holtby, I think Dempsey is likely to play a reduced role next year if he's still around, which I doubt. Most disappointing has to be Giroud or Podolski. Between them they probably cost the club about as much as it would have cost to keep van Persie.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 10, 2013 9:54 am
  • Good first half... Spurs outplaying Liverpool right now tbf. Doesnt appear we have a central midfield at times. Both teams doing very well with possession.

    Great team goal by Liverpool. love it when Coutinho is on the ball.
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 10, 2013 12:21 pm
  • Taking back the fortress. Screamed so hard at the Stevie penalty I saw stars. All in all a god day :)
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Re: EPL 2012-2013
Sun Mar 10, 2013 2:20 pm
  • peachesenregalia wrote:Hard lines, Hawkspur. Great match overall, SPurs definitely looked like they were going to run away with it after the interval, then the defensive error let Downing in and the match came alive again. Penalty was fair, I thought, and well-taken by Stevie. Yet again, defending on crosses and set pieces let us down at crucial times, but we scraped out a win. Things are going to get very interesting, Liverpool have a great wee run-in, with a home match against Chelsea in there. Could prove crucial.



    penalty was fair... probably earned two others with the Coutinho foul and the clip on Sturridge (although he sold it rather theatrically).

    the 4-4-2 let us down in the first half. Spurs better in possession and found gaps in the middle with ease. Second half was better defensively, but as peaches said, we were let down by defensive mishaps on set pieces. The pass back was interesting, at it wasnt the first time it happened. Spurs tried (and barely succeeded) with the same pass in the first half, from nearly the same spot.

    Either way, well played and frenetic pace and energy from both teams. great match. Spurs will be fine in securing CL I think.
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