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Promotion discussion thread

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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by FoxyAV on Mon Feb 26, 2018 11:34 am

Good to know it's not just me!

I agree there's a chance we could go up but to me it feels all like luck rather than design. We spend a fortune on players who are statistically very good and then either don't succeed in playing them properly (Hogan and Hourihane) or just leave them to rot on the sidelines (Lansbury, McCormack, Whelan, Jedi). It took over half a season for Bruce to notice Hourihane can play and I'm still not convinced he's been properly let off his leash. I don't think Lansbury has ever been allowed to show what he can do. Is it any surprise Hogan started looking good when Grealish was in the team and now he's not has lost all his form?

In defence of Bruce and the club we had to start again and with the money available we bought the best players available. For me it's what I listed before that's holding us back - team selection, tactic (no plural) and substitutions/game management. We have very clearly defined and separate means of scoring but the striker is not part of that. Bearing in mind the striker is the specialist in scoring goals it's a remarkable situation.

Now we have Grabban playing and no obvious or allowable (in the sense that O'Hare must be some kind of albatross) means of supplying Hogan, I can't help think we should go full sledgehammer and use Grabban and Hogan/Davis in a 4-4-2. Onomah doesn't do anything so get rid. I'd honestly rather see Lansbury and Hourihane in the middle too (controversial, I know, but they have the legs Jedi and Whelan don't, can both score goals and were bought at the same time - why, if not to play together?). What I absolutely wouldn't do is mess with the defence and wings. If we have to bring in an U23 winger then do so. But we won't will we, we're now in the serious end of the season and Bruce wants to rely on experience (but then why does he play Tuanzebe and Onomah?).

Does my head in, it really does.

Incidentally I still think Terry is a very big potential liability. He played a handful of games at Chelsea last season and looks tired now. We might actually need Tuanzebe back very quickly because if anything happens to Terry we really can't mess around putting our hopes in Samba or Jedi.
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by achilles on Mon Feb 26, 2018 2:34 pm

A weekly update:

Wolves

QPR at home...............W2 - 1
Preston away...............D1 - 1
Norwich at home..........D2 - 2
Fulham away...............L2 - 0
Reading at home


Derby

Norwich at home........D1 - 1
Wednesday away........L2 - 0
Leeds at home...........D2 - 2
Reading away............D3 - 3
Fulham at home


Villa

Birmingham at home......W2 - 0
Fulham away................ L2 - 0
Preston at home.............D1 - 1
Wednesday away............W2 - 4
QPR at home
Sunderland away


Cardiff

Millwall away...........D1 - 1
Bolton at home........W2 - 0
Boro at home...........W1 - 0
Ipswich away...........W0 - 1
Bristol at home.........W1 - 0
Brentford away
Barnsley home
Slum Dwellers home
Derby away


Fulham

Bolton away.........D1 - 1
Villa at home........W2 - 0
Bristol away..........D1 - 1
Wolves at home.....W2 - 0
Derby away


Bristol City

Sunderland at home.......D3 - 3
Leeds away...................D2- 2
Fulham at home............D1 - 1
Cardiff away..................L1 - 0
Wednesday at home


Preston

Brentford away.......D1 - 1
Wolves at home......D1 - 1
Villa away..............D1 - 1
Ipswich at home.....L0 - 1
Bolton away
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by De Kuip on Mon Feb 26, 2018 4:15 pm

Well form wise Derby, Bristol and Preston are flatlining, us, wolves and Fulham are a sort of mixed bag, and Cardiff are on a run.
Need them fuckers to start dropping points.
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Mon Feb 26, 2018 9:03 pm

Enough's enough, someone needs to beat Fulham and Cardiff.

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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by FoxyAV on Tue Feb 27, 2018 9:47 am

@FoxyAV wrote:I'd honestly rather see Lansbury and Hourihane in the middle too (controversial, I know, but they have the legs Jedi and Whelan don't, can both score goals and were bought at the same time - why, if not to play together?). What I absolutely wouldn't do is mess with the defence and wings. If we have to bring in an U23 winger then do so. But we won't will we, we're now in the serious end of the season and Bruce wants to rely on experience (but then why does he play Tuanzebe and Onomah?)

I was just looking at the highlights of us beating Norwich 4-2 for Green's superb goal and realised both Lansbury and Hourihane were played together. Look how much freedom they give each other, not least Hourihane's hat trick and how the ball gets passed out through the centre of midfield, something we don't seem to see anymore:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbfu-OJ2ifs

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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by De Kuip on Tue Feb 27, 2018 11:24 am

We looked very good that day, that's for sure.

Wasn't much evidence of hoofball - must have been the high quality of the pitch
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Tue Feb 27, 2018 12:03 pm

We were playing some of the best football we've played in a long time before Grealish and Adomah got injured, it might not have happened for us every game, but it doesn't for any team in this division, Wolves for example, don't always play amazing football and often have to dig out wins, just as we have done recently against the two Sheffield clubs.

We've definitely improved, it might be by more accident than design, but I'd say when everyone's fit, we're actually one of the better footballing teams in the championship.

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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by achilles on Tue Feb 27, 2018 12:08 pm

It also shows how much Davis has regressed since he made his debut, he has stopped doing the things that made him so unpredictable and good, also his work rate has gone down. Although he is still young and learning so it is all a learning curve. Hourihane was playing much further forward as well which is when he comes into his own and shows his true worth. It shows we can play football and this was before Agnew came as well which probably confuses me more as we seem to lurch from game to game not having a clue how we are going to play.
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by FoxyAV on Tue Feb 27, 2018 1:11 pm

@achilles wrote:It also shows how much Davis has regressed since he made his debut, he has stopped doing the things that made him so unpredictable and good, also his work rate has gone down. Although he is still young and learning so it is all a learning curve. Hourihane was playing much further forward as well which is when he comes into his own and shows his true worth. It shows we can play football and this was before Agnew came as well which probably confuses me more as we seem to lurch from game to game not having a clue how we are going to play.

We have had some random injuries in the last few matches, we did actually look good the few matches Grealish and Adomah were fit and now the team selection seems to be all over the place. Does Bruce say who he wants playing and the coaches go off to train them all up? Or do the coaches have a say in what they think will work?

Good point about Hourihane. I wonder why we haven't seen this line up (as in Lansbury and Whelan/Jedi in midfield and then Hourihane ahead of them and Davis up front) while Grealish has been out. We are starting 4-5-1 every week, what's Lansbury done that means he can't fit in the team?
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by big ming on Tue Feb 27, 2018 8:33 pm

I suppose that, even if we do get promotion but are unable to sustain Premier League status for more than a single season, we would be entitled to a further shed-load of parachute payments? Sometimes I think we are better off as a big fish in the Championship that constantly swirling around the plug-hole at the bottom of the Premier League. I am amazed that ITV/BBC don't bid seriously for live Championship rights. Games are often very watchable with some good skillful football. In some ways it is more competitive than the PL where the same 5/6 money clubs compete for a top six finish against the also-rans, season after season.

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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by achilles on Tue Feb 27, 2018 10:30 pm

@big ming wrote:I suppose that, even if we do get promotion but are unable to sustain Premier League status for more than a single season, we would be entitled to a further shed-load of parachute payments? Sometimes I think we are better off as a big fish in the Championship that constantly swirling around the plug-hole at the bottom of the Premier League. I am amazed that ITV/BBC don't bid seriously for live Championship rights. Games are often very watchable with some good skillful football. In some ways it is more competitive than the PL where the same 5/6 money clubs compete for a top six finish against the also-rans, season after season.

I totally agree the PL stinks and in fact I would rather stay in the Championship but unfortunately we need the money if only to escape the clutches of FFP for at least a season!
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by De Kuip on Tue Feb 27, 2018 10:50 pm

@big ming wrote:I suppose that, even if we do get promotion but are unable to sustain Premier League status for more than a single season, we would be entitled to a further shed-load of parachute payments? Sometimes I think we are better off as a big fish in the Championship that constantly swirling around the plug-hole at the bottom of the Premier League. I am amazed that ITV/BBC don't bid seriously for live Championship rights. Games are often very watchable with some good skillful football. In some ways it is more competitive than the PL where the same 5/6 money clubs compete for a top six finish against the also-rans, season after season.
It always amazes me as well, I bet channel 5 paid 50 bob for the rights. It has to be worth bbc/itv going for it - 4th best attended league in Europe behind the Prem, La Liga, and the Bundesliga.
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:04 pm

Cardiff's game away to Brentford has been called off, of course they will have a game in hand, but it's a good chance for us to close the gap, if our game goes ahead.

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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by achilles on Fri Mar 02, 2018 8:50 pm

Cardiff are in good form at the moment so anything that disrupts their rhythm has to be good.
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Sat Mar 03, 2018 7:43 pm

Seeing a lot of people suggest that there's no way we'd beat Fulham in the play-offs. That's the same Fulham that we're ahead of in the league and have a game in hand over, and the same Fulham that we've already beat this season, and whilst they did beat us, we were missing two of our best attacking players. Yes they're on an amazing run, but so are we when you look at it.

By the time the end of the season comes, it could well be some other team that's going into the play-offs on the back of a good run of form.

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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by achilles on Sun Mar 04, 2018 11:32 am

An update:

Wolves

QPR at home...............W2 - 1
Preston away...............D1 - 1
Norwich at home..........D2 - 2
Fulham away...............L2 - 0
Leeds away.................
Aston Villa away..........

Derby

Norwich at home...........D1 - 1
Wednesday away...........L2 - 0
Leeds at home..............D2 - 2
Reading away...............D3 - 3
Fulham home................L1 - 2
QPR away.....................
Nottingham Forest away..

Villa

Birmingham at home........W2 - 0
Fulham away................. L2 - 0
Preston at home.............D1 - 1
Wednesday away............W2 - 4
Sunderland away............
Wolves at home..............
QPR at home..................

Cardiff

Millwall away...........D1 - 1
Bolton at home........W2 - 0
Boro at home...........W1 - 0
Ipswich away...........W0 - 1
Bristol at home.........W1 - 0
Barnsley home..........
Slum Dwellers home...
Derby away.............

Fulham

Bolton away...........D1 - 1
Villa at home..........W2 - 0
Bristol away...........D1 - 1
Wolves at home.....W2 - 0
Derby away...........W1- 2
Sheffield Utd home..
Preston away..........

Bristol City

Sunderland at home.........D3 - 3
Leeds away...................D2- 2
Fulham at home..............D1 - 1
Cardiff away..................L1 - 0
Wednesday home............W4 - 0
Preston away.................
Burton away..................

Preston

Brentford away.......D1 - 1
Wolves at home......D1 - 1
Villa away..............D1 - 1
Ipswich at home......L0 - 1
Bolton away...........W1 - 3
Bristol City home....
Fulham home.........

Middlesbrough

Leeds home.............W3 - 0
Slum Dwellers away..
Barnsley home.........
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by De Kuip on Sun Mar 04, 2018 2:43 pm

Boro are looking good atm - Traore is prem class and Bamford has found his scoring boots.
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by achilles on Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:07 pm

@De Kuip wrote:Boro are looking good atm - Traore is prem class and Bamford has found his scoring boots.

They have a couple of 'easy' games coming up as well, could easily make the play offs.
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Sun Mar 04, 2018 10:27 pm

Big period coming up with four games in eleven days, which could make or break our season, if things go well we could even be back in contention for finishing above Wolves. Can't afford many slip ups from herein though.

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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by De Kuip on Mon Mar 05, 2018 8:55 am

I think I was more confident when it was in our hands but currently if wolves and Cardiff and us keep winning (even if they both lost to us) it still isn't enough which is frustrating. We need a win and a draw more than what Cardiff will do plus improve our GD by at least 2 over the Bluebirds.
It's do-able, of course it is, but I really want to see them wobble and soon.
Wolves I think will do enough to stay in either of the 2 auto spots.
Whilst we need to  put everything into overhauling Cardiff, I think it will be just as important to hope we end the normal season with as many players available as possible to give ourselves the very best chance of winning the play offs.
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by The Utterer on Mon Mar 05, 2018 11:07 am

It's gonna be very very tough to get up either way i fear. We have a tough run in ending with a very hard game away at Millwall.

At home we have
Wolves
QPR
Reading
Cardiff
Leeds
Derby


Away
Sunderland
Bolton
Hull
Norwich
Ipswich
Millwall

Although we have none of the top sides away they are pretty much all tough places to win at. Sunderland are fighting relegation, Bolton have improved especially at home etc etc. They are all winnable too however! I expect a mixed bag results from some tight games.

As for the home games they are basically must wins if we want automatic promotion surely?

We have to beat Cardiff for sure although could possibly get away with a draw or two at worst if things go our way by the time we play Derby for example.


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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Mon Mar 05, 2018 11:16 am

I think we just need to win as many games as possible and see what happens, I'm not bothered about winning the Championship per se, second will do, although it would be nice to finish above Wolves the way their fans carry on.

I just mentioned us being back in contention to finish top after the next batch of games to illustrate how many points that there are to play for in such a short period of time, teams' seasons could be made or broke in the next week or so, ourselves for example could technically be top of the league, but by the same token, we could be double figures adrift from second place.

Won't be easy for us, playing Wolves at home, and away to three teams fighting for league survival, but if we have designs on finishing top two, then they're all games we need to be winning.

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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by deadbuzzardalive on Mon Mar 05, 2018 11:56 am

The worrying thing is Cardiff have Barnsley and small heath next, both at home, if they win them both, which is likely, then we'll be at least seven points behind them going into the Wolves match, and that's only if we beat Sunderland, we could actually be ten points behind Cardiff going into the Wolves game.

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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by achilles on Mon Mar 05, 2018 1:26 pm

Too be fair it applies to all the teams near the top.

To my mind it is all about gaining momentum which gives you confidence, that is why tomorrow's game, with the postponement on Saturday, has gained significance and is a game we really must win before we meet Wolves on Saturday. Wolves at the moment have lost their momentum and are struggling, for them, so it is a good time to meet them.

Hopefully we can get one of the automatic places as I am not certain we are equipped for play off games!
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Re: Promotion discussion thread

Post by AstonThriller on Tue Mar 06, 2018 2:11 pm

@deadbuzzardalive wrote:Seeing a lot of people suggest that there's no way we'd beat Fulham in the play-offs. That's the same Fulham that we're ahead of in the league and have a game in hand over, and the same Fulham that we've already beat this season, and whilst they did beat us, we were missing two of our best attacking players. Yes they're on an amazing run, but so are we when you look at it.

By the time the end of the season comes, it could well be some other team that's going into the play-offs on the back of a good run of form.

They were on the same sort of run towards the end of the season last year, then what happened? Came up against Reading and bottled it. I wouldn't be concerned about playing them over two legs at all tbh. Defensively I see weaknesses there and when we have our full team on the park I think we'd exploit that.
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