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Championship rivals thread 2017/18

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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Sat Aug 19, 2017 7:51 am

I think where Wolves could struggle is if Neves gets injured, take him away and it's exactly the same central midfield as last year. Also Nuno plays a very high energy, high intensity game, his Valencia team was notorious for conceding late goals because they were so tired towards the end of games, that's something that could eventually happen to Wolves when teams begin to figure them out, they'll probably also tire in general as the season goes on.

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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Sat Aug 19, 2017 8:46 pm

Good to see Middlesbrough and Wolves lost today. I saw quite a few Wolves fans saying things like 'Cardiff have only played rubbish teams so far, they won't know what's hit them when they play us' and similar sentiments suggesting that because Wolves had beaten better teams than Cardiff, then Wolves should beat them, as if football works like that. Even after the game most of them are blamng the referee for offering them no protection, as if they're one of the galactico sides from la liga, to be fair some of them admit that Cardiff were the better side.

I don't actually mind Wolves, but whilst we're playing catch up we really need, teams likely to be challenging at the top of the table to drop points, so all in all today was a good day for us.


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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by AstonThriller on Sun Aug 20, 2017 11:07 am

LOL oh the Wolve's lot are bitter today aren't they? Very Happy Tbh it was a damn good weekend for us overall. Wolves were apparently bullied on their own turf and Cardiff fully deserved the win. This is what I was talking about the other day, until they played all the styles that this championship will throw at them, they should keep their big talk quiet. And tbh the Cardiff blueprint isn't a one off because the same was done to them by Shewsbury in pre-season by all accounts and the same "superstars" just wilted.

Boro imo are a little overhyped. Look very vulnerable at the back and are relying on Bamford to be their "number ten". They'll win a fair few games I'm sure, but I don't see them being as dominant as last years top two tbh.

Then we had Sheff Wed go to Fulham and win which could be sign of things to come. Because Wednesday are one of those teams who are capable of going on a good run of wins and that's what concerns me about them tbh. But anyway it's good to see Fulham haven't won yet so their momentum from last year hasn't got off the ground yet.

Sunderland were all over Leeds at the start of their match but as the game went on you could see Leeds class tell. Out of all of the teams tipped to be up there, Leeds have impressed me the most. That "Saiz" fella looks a damn good player to me. It's gonna be interesting to see how they cope without Wood though because but for him they would have never challenged for a promotion spot last season.

Also had to chuckle at Reading getting beat again. Their fans were giving it the bigun after Tuesday, but they've fallen right back down to earth now. I just don't see them being as consistent as they were last season at all.

So, all in all, it was a decent weekend. I must say though we've got to be wary about Ipswich and Cardiff. We might scoff at the idea of them being up there come may, but last seasons lessons teach us that nothing is impossible in this league. Cardiff seem very well drilled and a powerful side aswell. While Ipswich have a great partnership upfront that is getting them goals. I just hope we can go on a run now and get into the mix sooner rather than later.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Sat Aug 26, 2017 3:24 pm

Norwich losing 2-0 against Milwall, maybe puts our victory against them into a bit of perspective.

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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by AstonThriller on Sat Aug 26, 2017 4:05 pm

@deadbuzzardalive wrote:Norwich losing 2-0 against Milwall, maybe puts our victory against them into a bit of perspective.

Whether Norwich are poor or not, we've been great at home over the last twelve months.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Sat Aug 26, 2017 5:02 pm

After today's games the damage done doesn't look so bad, but even saying that by itself, is reflective of how much of a poor start we've had, shouldn't really be relieved that we're only four points from the play-offs and seven from automatic after five games.


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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by De Kuip on Sat Aug 26, 2017 5:37 pm

18th though. Disgrace.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by AstonThriller on Sun Aug 27, 2017 8:06 am

So it wasn't too bad a weekend, was it? Very Happy

Yes, Cardiff won again but I just can't help but feel this is a "Gregory" type start for them like we used to do many moons ago. With the way they play, I believe teams will soon figure out that they are actually a side that relies mainly on counter attacks and set-pieces. Yesterday QPR had a bunch of chances that they didn't convert so we'll see if Cardiff can keep this up after the break.

Fulham went and got their first win at Ipswich. For me, this was always gonna happen. Ipswich have been a little lucky thus far I think and Fulham just ran them ragged by all accounts. Hopefully, it's not the start of great Fulham run though.

Wednesday slipped up at Burton. They haven't quite got going yet have they? And word is the Wednesday fans aren't happy with Carlos. I feared they'd be this season Brighton, i.e an experienced group who knows how to win twenty plus games in this division. Still got time on their hands to do that I guess.

Derby are a little hit and miss right now. Lost heavily away at Sheff Utd but they have two wins under their belts so it's not too bad.

Sunderland got humped at Barnsley 3-0. And though I thought they started the season well, the lack of quality signings this summer looks to be taking it's toll on the side already. They've gotten by thus far on hard work and good organization but they simply lack quality in all areas of the pitch imo and that sort of results doesn't bode well at all.

Wolves got a draw at Brentford. Missed some big chances apparently but so did Brentford too. Brentford away is always gonna be tricky, but that's a loss and draw now in their last two league games so maybe they are just starting to stutter. Gonna be interesting to see if they can get a decent striker before the window shuts.

Leeds went and won at Forest. And that makes it three away wins on the spin now. Their problem though appears to be at home as they haven't won in the two games they've played thus far. The sky comms were licking their lips over them but until they address that home form, and beat some of the top sides, I won't be giving them too much credit although they do look like a decent side tbh.

Boro were second best against Preston according to reports. And they too don't look totally convincing. Granted, they've signed a lot of new players and they can still gel and put a good run together. But I can't help but look at them as the "Villa" of last season...i.e spent a lot of money on individuals rather than building a good team.

Reading went and won at the Sty. I thought they'd struggle this season after a few key departures but tbh, they still have that solid look about them from last season so they may be one to keep an eye on.

Elsewhere Hull gubbed Bolton on Friday which is probably to be expected. Word is they are getting Jackson Ervine which is a damn good signing imo. I still expect them to be hit and miss though but they are certainly in the mix for promotion from what I've seen of them.

In closing Norwich are having an absolute mare right now. Now I understand that implementing new philosophies takes time, but they've been pathetic thus far and are shipping goals for fun. At the end of last season they were battering teams by seven and five goals, but their new sporting directors that they nicked from Huddersfield went for a radical new dawn by trying to replicate the Wagner revolution and it's just looking very bad right now. No doubt, things can change quickly in this game, But Farke is already under pressure and Norwich's promotion hopes have been seriously damaged.

So all in all it was a decent weekend. We've got to start flexing our mucles now though and the next six games are gonna be vital for us.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by achilles on Sun Aug 27, 2017 11:15 am

Still fancy Fulham to be up there, as their team is all about pace and they will crucify us, only their inability to finish is going to bother them but they are going to create so many chances.
Leeds look very solid and appear to have a good chance of the top 6.
Can't see Cardiff keeping this up, will be interesting to see them when they lose a couple of matches.
Wolves will be up and down, play brilliantly and crap the next especially when the winter period hits!
Derby are a strange one as I expected better but Rowett will get them into the top 6.
Wednesday are another who haven't got their act together which is rather surprising as they are an established group, too early to write them off as I expect them to be in the top 6.
Sunderland is a team I can't have as they haven't got the squad for contention.
Boro, I agree with @AstonThriller, they are us last season, expect to walk it and realization kicks in!
Reading are another strange one as they confuse me, as they just seem to plod on getting results without looking anyway special, certainly potential top 6.
Hull are another team that could be anything, certainly hit and miss but not to be written off.
Sheff Utd are a team that could surprise this season, Billy Sharp scores goals for fun and they work extremely hard, at 40/1 currently I think they are worth a shout for a top 6 place.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by DelboyVilla on Sun Aug 27, 2017 12:02 pm

The big question is are there 6 teams that over a season will perform more consistently than us? On the evidence of the first 5 games (and last season as we look to be performing similarly) I would say that there are a lot more than 6 again?

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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by The Utterer on Mon Aug 28, 2017 1:09 pm

I think it's all very much an unknown still at the moment personally. The first 6 games in the Championship are in my experience a bit of a lottery and then it starts to settle. I remember when we won promotion in in the 80's after the 1987 relegation we failed to win in the opening 6 games. I think we lost a couple and drew a few but then went on a run. It seems to be a common theme.

Add to that we are still not fielding our best 11 yet with Kodija, Jedinak & Grealish still out. Plus the new signing yet to play of course. A new defence still moulding together and again the Spine has changed.

Terry, Davis are new & Jedinak & Kodija are missing from what is likely our strongest spine. In my experiance that affect results and we will not see the true AVFC until that spine is in place and had a few games. So it's all about trying to keep ourselves in it until that happens so for me another 12 games to try and accumulate around 25 points and we are sitting pretty.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by achilles on Mon Aug 28, 2017 1:41 pm

@The Utterer - Where do you expect Jedinak to play and in place of who?

Grealish won't be back until January, so it will only be the tail end of the season he might have an influence.

Kodjia is obviously a key part of the team and we seem to be putting all our eggs into one basket relying on him hitting the ground running to carry on scoring from last season which is expecting a lot really.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by De Kuip on Mon Aug 28, 2017 3:28 pm

No way on this earth would I class Grealish as one of our best 11. Seems to be a case of the longer he's injured the better he gets, cos I saw nothing from him before he went off that convinced me he was anything other than flattering to deceive .
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by AstonThriller on Mon Aug 28, 2017 5:11 pm

@De Kuip wrote:No way on this earth would I class Grealish as one of our best 11. Seems to be a case of the longer he's injured the better he gets, cos I saw nothing from him before he went off that convinced me he was anything other than flattering to deceive .

Tbf he scored a few goals towards the end of the season and ended up as our second top scorer. I'm sure we were all hoping he would step up this year in that number ten role and I hope that's still possible because there is no doubting his potential imo. Also, people have claimed he will be "back in January" but wasn't the original reports suggesting he was gonna be three months out? That would mean he should be back in November the latest. For him to come back in January would mean he would be out for SIX months. I really cannot see that being the case.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by achilles on Mon Aug 28, 2017 6:40 pm

@AstonThriller wrote:
@De Kuip wrote:No way on this earth would I class Grealish as one of our best 11. Seems to be a case of the longer he's injured the better he gets, cos I saw nothing from him before he went off that convinced me he was anything other than flattering to deceive .

Tbf he scored a few goals towards the end of the season and ended up as our second top scorer. I'm sure we were all hoping he would step up this year in that number ten role and I hope that's still possible because there is no doubting his potential imo. Also, people have claimed he will be "back in January" but wasn't the original reports suggesting he was gonna be three months out? That would mean he should be back in November the latest. For him to come back in January would mean he would be out for SIX months. I really cannot see that being the case.

He was in hospital for a week in the end, much worse than initially thought.

https://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/championship/verletztespieler/wettbewerb/GB2

http://annabet.com/en/soccerstats/serie_2_English_Championship.html

http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/injury-update-bad-news-aston-13417286
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by The Utterer on Mon Aug 28, 2017 10:36 pm

@achilles wrote:@The Utterer - Where do you expect Jedinak to play and in place of who?

Grealish won't be back until January, so it will only be the tail end of the season he might have an influence.

Kodjia is obviously a key part of the team and we seem to be putting all our eggs into one basket relying on him hitting the ground running to carry on scoring from last season which is expecting a lot really.

Just saw this so apologies for delay in responding.

I see our strongest "spine" as this with second strongest/backup (in brackets)

..................GK.. Johnson (Steer)

..............CD..Chester (Samba)... Terry (Elphick?)

.....................DM Jedinak / Whelan

................... CM..Hourihane (Lansbury)

....................NO.10 Snodgrass (Grealish)

...................ST.. Kodija(Gabby)  Davis (Hogan)

Due to age & legs going etc I think we'll see Jedinak & Whelan kind of rotated. Jedinak is more secure defensively in my opinion and we have been conceding far too many goals hence why i think we are missing him. Whelan appears to have more of an eye for a pass however so i think they will be used for different reasons ffor home & away matches or as required in a game. More Whelan at home, more Jedinak away for example. But if it's a tight game and we're 1-0 or 2-1 up i could see Jedinak coming on for a tiring Whelan for example.

If you look at that spine though it's clear it's badly disrupted currently. The bits in Bold are either out injured or is a new player / partnership so not 100% fluent just yet.

So out of the players who could be considered part of the spine (Not all at once obviously) i think it's 6 who are either settling in, new and not even played yet or injured. Add to that the defence has not developed a fully fluent understanding yet (Which is known to result in goals against) and in my mind it helps me to understand the poor start.

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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by DelboyVilla on Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:41 am

Utterer I think you are being very kind to the current coaching regime?

It is the start of a new season and most sides have changes to their 'spine', this is very usual after a summer break? With the quality we have we should cope better than most not worse as the case seems to be!

We have the squad available to be able to play a consistent formation and style week in week out even taking into acccount injuries which will inevitably occur. We however have a manager who thinks it is a good idea to change round the system constantly which in my mind confuses players and creates a nervousness in the side.

I will not class Grealish as an important player yet as he was not a consistent enough player last season (or the season before that so on and so forth). OK Kodjia and Jedinak were important last year but with the replacements we have we should cope easily. Please remember that Kodjia was in most peoples eyes a success last year in spite of the tactics employed not because of?

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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by Gordonsleftboot on Tue Aug 29, 2017 8:06 am

@DelboyVilla wrote:The big question is are there 6 teams that over a season will perform more consistently than us? On the evidence of the first 5 games (and last season as we look to be performing similarly) I would say that there are a lot more than 6 again?

Why six? TBH I don't want to see us qualify for the play offs and have a 25% chance of promotion. Top 2 and automatic please! We have the squad.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by DelboyVilla on Tue Aug 29, 2017 11:23 am

@Gordonsleftboot wrote:
@DelboyVilla wrote:The big question is are there 6 teams that over a season will perform more consistently than us? On the evidence of the first 5 games (and last season as we look to be performing similarly) I would say that there are a lot more than 6 again?

Why six? TBH I don't want to see us qualify for the play offs and have a 25% chance of promotion. Top 2 and automatic please! We have the squad.

I totally agree but do you see Bruce getting this side to amass 90 plus points in the next 40 games? Based on the last 10 months not a chance! My expectations should be top 2 easily, the very minimum should be play offs and the reality is unfortunately mid table again!

With Bruce = No Chance of Promotion

Without Bruce = Chance of promotion

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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by The Utterer on Tue Aug 29, 2017 1:52 pm

@DelboyVilla wrote:Utterer I think you are being very kind to the current coaching regime?

It is the start of a new season and most sides have changes to their 'spine', this is very usual after a summer break? With the quality we have we should cope better than most not worse as the case seems to be!

We have the squad available to be able to play a consistent formation and style week in week out even taking into acccount injuries which will inevitably occur. We  however have a manager who thinks it is a good idea to change round the system constantly which in my mind confuses players and creates a nervousness in the side.

I will not class Grealish as an important player yet as he was not a consistent enough player last season (or the season before that so on and so forth). OK Kodjia and Jedinak were important last year but with the replacements we have we should cope easily. Please remember that Kodjia was in most peoples eyes a success last year in spite of the tactics employed not because of?

I hear what you're saying i really do although it's debatable whether i'm being Kind or realistic maybe? I'm not defending anyone and agree that the rate the line-up changes is crackers and will inevitably result in an unsettled & uncohesive team. In fact i'd go so far as to say it's only because we have such a strong squad for this division that we are still able to pick up a few results amidst the chaos. But i can't personally decide how good this team can be until we see Kodija & Jedinak back in the fold (Although i did use Grealish very loosely Rolling Eyes ) and for us to play a with a settled Spine at least although preferable a settled team generally.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by FoxyAV on Tue Aug 29, 2017 2:04 pm

I like Grealish and it's a nightmare there's finally a starting place in exactly the correct position for him in the squad and he's out for months. Whether you like (?!) Bruce or not, his two key attacking players are out and his backup lone striker of Hogan isn't cutting the mustard. To a certain extent the manager deserves a little bit of slack for that, although that's all used up with interest based on the rubbish team selections, tactics, defensive hoofball and general crap he's served up for us to pay money to watch. I don't, however, see Grealish in our spine yet. I like both our keepers but from there on it's:

Chester
Hourihane
Kodjia

That's it. It pisses me off that we waved goodbye to Baker like we did Okore and Clark (yes, Okore. Injury problems and then like Clark, benched in favour of the utter shitstorm of Richards and Lescott). I actually had Okore and Clark as part of our spine the season before last, along with Gueye and Veretout but look how well that turned out. Like Hourihane, Veretout wasn't given a chance but I'm sure they're both really good players. Whatever is going on with the defence, I don't like Terry there, he's only being acceptable so far. Whelan might be great at passing but so was Westwood, but I'd put them at the same level for tackling, and Whelen bottom of class for speed, energy and fitness (albeit only just behind Elmo).

I really don't think we need Whelan or Jedi in the squad, just on the bench to secure points if we take the lead.

I agree with Delboy, it comes down to how we want to proceed and with Bruce we're only going to succeed in spite of him. I watched Reading pick us apart with a proper game plan, accurate passing, ball retention, really quick closing down, excellent movement and ultimately a lack of really top players stopping them from absolutely murdering us. How much was their starting 11 worth? probably not much more than we spent on Hogan and McCormack. And yet we all see game plan, closing down, passing, possession and movement as the absolute basics, something Bruce doesn't appear capable of mastering. We can (and probably have) buy the best players in the league but with that dinosaur in charge we're going nowhere.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Tue Aug 29, 2017 5:47 pm

Apparently Newcastle are selling Gayle to raise funds, it will be interesting to see if he ends up at another Championship club, can't be many who'd have the money to buy him though.

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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by FoxyAV on Tue Aug 29, 2017 5:58 pm

@deadbuzzardalive wrote:Apparently Newcastle are selling Gayle to raise funds, it will be interesting to see if he ends up at another Championship club, can't be many who'd have the money to buy him though.

It's not going to be us buying him: he's 26, far too young for Bruce.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by achilles on Tue Aug 29, 2017 11:00 pm

@FoxyAV wrote:
@deadbuzzardalive wrote:Apparently Newcastle are selling Gayle to raise funds, it will be interesting to see if he ends up at another Championship club, can't be many who'd have the money to buy him though.

It's not going to be us buying him: he's 26, far too young for Bruce.

Interesting to know how much Newcastle want for him, especially as McCormack cost us £12 million and Hogan potentially £15 million?
Probably far too expensive for most of the Championship clubs especially when wages are taken into account.
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Re: Championship rivals thread 2017/18

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Fri Sep 01, 2017 6:36 am

After all has been said and done with the transfer window, I really do think we have the best squad.

Strange what's going on at Wolves they sign some very good players, but then towards the end of the window sell two of their strikers in Dicko and Mason, having already sold Bodvarsson, leaving with them with only one striker recognized striker in Bonatini, and he's only there on loan. Not only that but they also got rid of Edwards who got ten goals for them last season and Jordan Graham; it gets even stranger when you think that Dicko, Graham and Edwards have all been sold to 'rivals' in the league.

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