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I'm good at getting my account suspended :)
Hey, my bad for taking so long to get back to you lol. I've been lazy and my account got suspended for something I didn't want to "apologize" to B/R for, so I had to make a new one. You can just keep posting on the page you've been using though.
I'll reply to the older comment first.
Couldn't believe that LvG singled Young out like that. What purpose does it serve to say that about a player who's been working hard to improve? He's been a pretty good manager for us, but he's often had some problems with what he says. It's like what he said about not having a 20 goal a season striker. It's true, but you don't need to say it quite like that.
I'm pretty pissed about ADM and the way he's handling this transfer. We don't need snakes like that at OT. How can a professional player under contract just not show up like that? Good riddance that he's going. Let's hope the next player we get wants to play for the badge.
Mmm ya Pedro does seem like a good player for us theoretically, I'm only worried about how to balance all the minutes these players need. Actually, thinking about it now with Herrera playing in a deeper role we really only have Young, Mata, Memphis and Fellaini for those attacking midfield positions, with the youngsters behind. Considering how many games we'll play this season we could actually use another 1st team player. Lingard, Pereira and Januzaj should get plenty of chances in the Capital 1 and FA cups.
Following the PSG match it does seem like the 4-2-3-1 is here to stay. How do you feel about that? I think I might prefer the 4-3-3 for us because our players are more suited to it.
I do think we'll replace ADM with a star signing. It seems like someone at some level of management is keen on getting big names in, though I'm not sure whether that's Woodward, LvG or someone else. Anyway, who that player will be I think will be a bit of a surprise until it happens, much like ADM was himself. The reason I think that is that there really isn't anyone readily available right now. Whoever that player ends up being they'll have to push for the move.
Okay, the newer comment now.
1. I agree and disagree. I think with Smalling leading the back line (assuming he can continue his form from last season) I think we'll be good enough for a push for the PL title, but it won't be enough for the CL. Smalling was playing at an "international" level towards the end of the season, and if he can keep improving he should reach a world class level IMO. Evans had a horror-show of a season, and I get the feeling you don't like him all that much, but he's definitely better than that. We can't forget, in our last title winning season he was our best defender. If he can regain that form and Smalling keeps his up then we have a really good PL caliber CB pairing in them.
2. Definitely agree, though it's pointless while Rooney is guaranteed to start. All we'll do is play Rooney in midfield, and that will upset the balance of the whole team. Or the new striker will be played out of position or he'll rot on the bench. Regardless, we really need a world class goal scorer because like you said, we can't bank on Rooney scoring enough goals if we want to win the title. His first touch has been even poorer in preseason than I've ever seen it. Usually his first touch was insanely inconsistent, now it's flat-out poor. I think the best way to go about this situation is to sign a world class goal scorer who plays on the right wing. Bring Mata into the CAM position, rotate Young and Memphis on the left, and have the RW be one of our main goal scoring weapons. It would be especially good if that player could also play as a CF and take over Rooney's position in the team when LvG wakes up and realizes he isn't good enough.
3. DDG pissed me off more than ADM. At least with ADM we know PSG was always his first choice. DDG though. SMFH. The fans and club stood by him when he was garbage and supported him through his development, and that performance against PSG is how he repays us? Fuck him. If it were up to me I would keep him for the final year of his contract and just send him away on extended vacation (a la City with Tevez) so he can't even train with the team. More likely than not though he'll just be sold this season. You can't rely on a player who doesn't want to be there. Out of those 3 keepers I would go for Oblak probably. Levy is a royal pain in the ass to deal with, plus Lloris might one day want to play for PSG (though it doesn't seem so). Still, Levy is a pain in the ass. Leno has the look of a future Bayern keeper (in about 4-5 years, so a repeat of the DDG saga). Oblak doesn't have a home club to go to (a big one at least) so he wins by default for me lol.
5. Realizing now that his makes my question before redundant lol. 4-3-3 with that midfield would be amazing. Carrick, Fellaini and Mata would make a very strong backup midfield, though to be honest I'm not sure how I feel about Mata being "B" team. I really want to see him starting together with Herrera, but that's only feasible if we don't sign a RW goal machine, which will only be okay if we have a WC striker who can net us 25 goals a season. And that isn't possible as long as Rooney is guaranteed to start. We should have sold his ass so long ago....
Yeah I'm not sure what LvG is thinking with Blind starting at CB either. He's been a good player for us, and I really like him at LB (more than Shaw even because of the way he supports the LW instead of trying to be the LW), but he's not good enough a CB to be starting for us, especially in a back 4. If we were playing a back 3 (let's hope we aren't) he'd be a good choice, but not like this. I wouldn't be on board with signing 2 CBs though. I think there is enough promise in Smalling for us to give him another season. He was really good last season, and as a player who has been with us for a long time it'd be good to see him succeed. McNair also looks extremely promising, while Rojo, Jones and Evans (if he improves from last season) are all serviceable. Laporte coming in would hinder McNair's development too much I think. I just don't want this team to be unrecognizable from what it was, and there are very few players still around who came from the SAF era. From those Carrick is old, Rooney is past it, Young is 30 and not exactly world class, Valencia is average at best, DDG is a piece of shit, Jones won't be world class and Evans isn't, and that really only leaves Smalling who still could be if he builds on next season. That's why I'm so desperate to see him succeed.
I also want to see some of our youngsters well and truly break into the first team. Johnstone has me excited (it's too bad we don't have an old, reliable GK to hold the fort for a season or two while he develops) as well as Lingard. Pereira I'm not sold on. He seems like one of those immensely talented players with decision making problems. Hopefully it's just youth and he grows out of it. Januzaj finally has me thinking he's made it past last season and is ready to be a productive member of the fist team again. McNair is probably the most exciting of the bunch though.
BTW, what do you think of Januzaj? Winger, CAM or CF? I've thought since Moyes was around that he'd be ideal as a false-9 type forward. The match vs Barca was a good indication that I may have been right.
Also, can you recap the second half of the PSG match for me? I'm just remembering now I never actually got to watch it because I had to go pick someone up.
Haven't seen anything of Memphis really, but I think LW would probably be better for him. At CAM we just have too many players to squeeze in. Herrera for example, or Di Maria, would do much better there (though he did look good in that first preseason match). His vision was really good though in that #10 role. Hard to say off of one match where he'd be best, but in terms of the squad I think LW makes more sense so that ADM can play centrally (if he stays).
Guardian is reporting now that we're activating Pedro's release clause. What do you think? Credible? Good signing if true? TBH I think our attacking positions are good in terms of depth, and I'm not sure if adding him would really improve us too much. Not to mention it would create more of a selection headache.
The big issue I have with signing a ST is that it will upset the squad balance. The only kind of ST we need is one that's an improvement on Rooney (so a borderline world class player minimum), but Rooney is the captain and so is guaranteed to play. If he isn't starting as a forward (his only position where he can still make a positive impact at this level) then he'll be starting deeper, and that's suicide. Otherwise we'll play a 2 forward system and I really don't like any of those. Lone striker is the way to go for me.
Haven't seen Otamendi outside of a couple youtube clips. Looks solid, but I don't know enough about him. If the deal falls through (as you said, he looks like the leading candidate at the moment) I'm hoping we target Hoewedes since Ramos doesn't look attainable. As long as we get a real leader at the back I'll be happy.
What'd you think of our new signings in that first match?
And boom, BBC. Done deal.
Holy fkn Christ it seems we got Schneiderlin now too. Ed Woodward don't play around...
In footballing terms I'm excited about Schweinsteiger joining the club, but on a personal level I'm pretty devastated about it. Club legends shouldn't leave their clubs, and I have to think that he was somehow influenced to leave by the board, either because they weren't going to offer him a new contract or perhaps he was assured that he wouldn't be in the first team picture by Pep. I dunno, either way though he was saying just last week that he wants to win a record 4th consecutive league title with Bayern. Something must have changed.
I agree that Schneiderlin should be targeted as well, although it's a bit less desperate now. With Bastian here now we have a solid midfield core and should be good for next season as is. If LvG decides Schneiderlin isn't his kind of player then it won't be too big an issue to wait another season to see who becomes available.
Commentators trying to juggle the names would be hysterical though lol.
Apparently Memphis will play as a CF, so between him, Rooney, Wilson and potentially Chicharito if he isn't gone we should have a decent rotation of players for up top. I think whether we need someone else will depend on whether Memphis is being eyed primarily as a CF or as a winger who can fill in at CF. With Memphis calling himself a ST and LvG saying he wants to play him up front I think he may just be a full time ST for us, so in that scenario we wouldn't really need anyone else IMO.
Otherwise Lacazette would be an ideal fit, I agree.
And yeah, I've been mostly just opening transfer rumours to see the source, and as soon as I see something that isn't BBC, Sky or Bild (only if it concerns Bayern, because that's the only club they have a really good track record with as far as I know) I just close the article and don't bother lol. That's why I haven't been mentioning anything unless it's official. Same for you?
At least we got a RB though. Never seen Darmian play, but people say he's quite good. There's no way he isn't an upgrade on Valencia. I'm a bit disappointed though because I still feel Rafael could have reclaimed that spot, yet it looks like he doesn't have LvG's trust at all. He'll probably get shipped out this summer or the next.
Hopefully Schneiderlin is up next, and a CB to partner Smalling. With the way he played towards the end of last season I think it'd be disrespectful to sign 2 starting caliber CBs, and with Rojo, Jones, Evans maybe, and the youngsters we have a lot of decent quality players in the position to play cover, not to mention that Blind and Carrick can both fill in too.
No I haven't been watching the Copa America. South American teams just don't really appeal to me. They often have a tendency to play with a more flair-y individualistic style, whereas I enjoy the more systematic, team-oriented European game. I've been watching quite a bit of the WWC instead, though my work hours overlap with the midweek matches.
I'm just not sure how LvG would keep everyone satisfied with minutes if he has 2 great players for every position, since great players generally want to be the ones playing.
If we assume Rooney is a lock for the ST position, seeing as how he's the captain, and that we'll be playing with 5 midfielders, I think we're too stacked on attack-minded midfielders. One position will go to a defensive type midfielders, like Carrick or Schneiderlin, and the other 4 will be attack minded. Mata, Young, Herrera and Fellaini have all done well this past season, especially Herrera who should be a starter no matter how we line up. Di Maria is insanely talented but hasn't hit his stride yet. If he does, he would push anyone out of the starting 11, including Memphis and Firmino (if we really are getting him).
That's already 5 players for 4 positions. Add in 2 more and it's a clusterf*ck of players who's talent merits minutes (Mata, Di Maria), a player who needs the minutes to continue developing (Memphis), players at an age where game time will fine tune their game and take them to the next level (Herrera, 25, and Firmino, 23), and players in their prime who will want to be playing regularly during their peak years (Fellaini and Young). And that's all assuming that Januzaj goes out on loan.
I don't think it's possible to juggle so many players and give them all the minutes they deserve. IMO something has to give. Either Firmino isn't actually being signed, or someone is being sold (possibly Di Maria because even if he wants to stay, LvG might not want him anymore).
The only other scenario that makes sense to me is if either Memphis or Firmino is signed with the intention of converting them into a CF.
Errr forgot to mention that he's also a pretty accomplished goalscorer.