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Messages - baggiebof

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26
West Bromwich Albion FC / Re: Rayhaan Tulloch
« on: January 24, 2020, 04:42:42 PM »
It's all about the pathway. If we aren't creating a pathway for the players to play in our first team then we need to give them a pathway to play via loans. If they succeed on loan but don't quite make our team then we will be able to get a decent fee with a sell on fee which in itself makes the academy valuable.

We don't seem to do either particularly well but we are getting the hardest bit right, developing great talent. Let's hope we can get the next bit sorted also.

27
West Bromwich Albion FC / Re: System tactics personnel
« on: January 23, 2020, 03:05:39 PM »
if Bilic wants to pursue a 4-2-3-1 then the two options for the wide left position is either HRK or Chris Brunt.

Agree about finding width in advanced areas as teams are playing quite narrow in order to stifle Pereira and Sawyers - although Pereira being suspended changes things again.

Everybody is saying buy a striker but I think our problem is in midfield.


I agree that the midfield isn't functioning that well and in light of Pereira being out suspended, I'd like to see this change:

Johnstone

Furlong
Hegazi
Ajayi
Ferguson

Harper
Sawyers
Krovinovic

Phillips
Robson-Kanu
Edwards

This hopefully will give Sawyers some more space as both Krovinovic and arguably Harper are better at receiving the ball on the half turn than Livermore so should give the opposition more to think about. I think if we go for a three we do need players who can break the lines and Harper can certainly do that as can Krovinovic.

28
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: After Match Debate
« on: January 21, 2020, 10:02:49 PM »
I was surprised that Ajayi was dropped for a home game where we would be kn the front foot and playing higher up, I thiugh he might give him a breather in an away tie if at all.

I though Zohore was a mistake but I think Bilic was caught out by Stoke's initial high press, it didnt last all game but they were aggressive at the start and maybe that is why we saw Zohore as his game is about running in behind and running the channels, of course when they sat deep it didn't really help.

We shunted Pereira out wide on too many occasions for me.

When chasing second half, Livermore began playing quite advanced, I thought we should have seen Krovinovic on for him at that point.

All is not lost though, I thought we were better second half and a good Stoke defensive performance saw them through, we didn't derseve to lose.

29
West Bromwich Albion FC / Re: Slaven Bilic
« on: January 21, 2020, 09:57:37 PM »
We haven't had a season where we've blown teams away regularly, how many times this year did we come away saying, "we didnt play well but got the result?" Over time, results generally catch up.with performances and we probably didnt deserve to be as far out in the lead as we were, something the xG table backed up.

Football is a low scoring game so little decisions can make a big difference and with confidence and some brilliant in game management from Bilic, we found ourselves clear. We have had a bad run and missing Diangana hasnt helped but we were probably also due being on the wrong side of tight results. It can turn around and all is not lost, I actually think we have been a bit better the last few games but confidence is lacking.

For me a few things would certainly help, Pereira staying as the 10 and not being shunted wide. We need to find a way to free up Sawyers, people keep boxing him and Pereira in. I'm not convinced that he is brilliant but Edwards needs to play in the absence of Diangana as we can be one placed without that direct player.

30
West Bromwich Albion FC / Re: Injuries / medical department
« on: January 21, 2020, 09:51:45 PM »
I've been disappointed with the handling of Gibbs but Dianagana had a whole week of training before a 30 minute cameo vs Charlton and then another full week of training, harsh to blame them for that instance.

31
West Bromwich Albion FC / Re: Grady Diangana (on loan from West Ham)
« on: January 15, 2020, 04:01:53 PM »
That was the information initially but it has since been confirmed that West Ham have until 27th January.

https://www.expressandstar.com/sport/football/west-bromwich-albion/2020/01/11/comment-slaven-bilic-calm-in-transfer-window/


32
West Bromwich Albion FC / Re: Promotion to the Premier League
« on: January 14, 2020, 07:03:33 PM »


For example Sawyers will easily be good enough for the PL provided we get a decent defensive centre midfielder in the Mulumbu mould.


Furlong will be fine in the top division. We know Hegazi, Austin, Gibbs and Phillips can play there. Pereira obviously good enough while due to his pace Ajayi should be able to make a fist of it.


We will need a first choice Goalkeeper, a first choice striker and a left side midfielder. Along with the aforementioned engine room midfielder. The rest are easily good enough to stay up. That's all that matters first season back, another thing Villa and their "top 6" fans failed to understand.

I agree with this. The ball winning midfielder needs to be top drawer.

33
West Bromwich Albion FC / Re: Slaven Bilic
« on: January 13, 2020, 03:24:54 PM »
Bilic has been a breath of fresh air. However the points raised by Zippy and others are well founded.

For me the things we need to change are (1) zonal marking (it's just not working; we concede far too many goals from set pieces. One of the biggest criticisms of Moore was that we didn't learn from our mistakes but the same could be levelled at Bilic) (2) Not leaving anyone up the field when we defend a corner (3) having both Phillips and Periera standing together when we have a corner (sometimes it will be a good ploy but not all the time) (4) Trying to score the perfect goal by walking it in, have a shot for god's sake!

1 - I have seen a lot of bashing of 'zonal' marking on here over the last few days, some of which has been unfair (not from you Hull I must add). I saw one comment along the lines of "you always see goals let in as a result of zonal marking" well yeah, that's because it is always highlighted as being a fault of zonal marking. You never hear someone say, that's the problem with the man marking system. I haven't got the time or the will power to start recording goals conceded from corners but would hazard a guess that zonal marking isn't the problem. We conceded shed loads under Mowbray, we marked man for man. I also saw someone say that zonal marking was ok at elite level because the players are better; zonal marking actually benefits smaller teams as it means you can focus your best few defenders of the ball in the most important areas, like Guardiola's Barcelona teams for example. I guess this is just a defence of unfair zonal marking criticism. Regards whether we should change from zonal marking, everyone is right, something must change but for me it is probably a mentality/personnel thing more than a system thing.

2 - I think it is actually a better attacking ploy to have people back behind the ball because when the ball gets cleared, you can press in whatever direction the ball is cleared in, if it goes nowhere near the player up the field then they are just out of the game. You also have forward momentum when attacking the ball when it is cleared. It is very common place for teams to not leave someone up so no problem with this from me. I'll add this in here too as I have seen it elsewhere but I wonder how many times in a season a side that covers both posts have someone on the post saving a goal, not many I'd suggest whereas the additional men can help stop a short corner, cover the edge of the box or help mark but you wouldn't necessarily point out the positive impact of this. Not having men on the post also helps you to attack a ball quicker when cleared and also clear out of the box to squeeze the space for the second phase and the ball back in, it certainly has its plus points.

3 - I agree on this on, not a fan. I understand the logic for free kicks in and around the box as it will influence a defence dropping deep or pushing up depending on whether it is an in or out-swinger but corners isn't the same, only really matters to the keeper.

4 -  Amen.

34
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: Pre Match Chat
« on: January 09, 2020, 10:13:17 AM »
I'd go for this (which is what I suspect that we will see):

Johnstone

Furlong
Ajayi
Bartley
Townsend

Livermore
Sawyers

Phillips
Pereira
Diangana

Robson-Kanu

Bond, Hegazi, Brunt, Krovinovic, Edwards, Zohore, Austin

Regards Bilic having the preference for a lopsided back 4 with one of the full backs being allowed to bomb on more than the other, whilst Furlong has done well attacking this season, he is quite good in the air and is a solid defensive option at the back post. He began his career as a centre back so although he might be good going forward, he can do a job tucking in better than Townsend could in my opinion.

35
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: Pre Match Chat
« on: January 03, 2020, 01:51:15 PM »
The team I would pick has zero chance of being selected but I would quite like to see a strong team put out, with one or two regulars having a rest:

Johnstone

Furlong
Bartley
Hegazi
Townsend

Harper
Sawyers

Robson-Kanu
Pereira
Edwards

Zohore

Bond, O'Shea, Brunt, Barry, Krovinovic, Phillips, Austin


36
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: Pre Match Chat
« on: December 31, 2019, 09:16:04 AM »
Without having the sports science data available, it is hard to pick a team as we just dont know how fatigued the players are. I'd be looking at, if possible, replicating our strongest XI so far this season:

Johnstone

Ferguson
Ajayi
Hegazi
Gibbs

Livermore
Sayers

Phillips
Pereira
Diangana

Robson-Kanu

Livermore has played a lot of football recently and his energy levels in there would concern me against a team that moves the ball as well as Leeds. I do just wonder if we might see Ajayi in midfield with Hegazi and Bartley as centre backs.

37
XG (expected goals) and XP (expected points) don't tell the full story and stats can't show the full picture alone, but it is worth noting that when Man Utd had their great run that got Solskjaer the job full time, maybe statto's pointed out that they were way over performing their XG and XP expectations and that it couldn't last forever. They have of course been proven right with United currently competing with Wolves and Sheff Utd rather than with the top sides.

Also worth noting that after the first 10 or so games of the season, the XG and XP table also had Brentford and Sheff Wed in positions challenging the top 2, despite them both lagging behind. As the season is going on however, we are seeing the XG and XP stats start to get it right, especially in the case of Brentford which suggests they do have some merit in predicting a longer term trend.

We won't like it too much as it suggests we are maybe on a good run rather than just being the best side in the division, but we shouldn't just dismiss it. Keeps us grounded to know there is still a lot of work to do and that improvements can be made.

Our league position has as much to do with moments of quality and a never say die team spirit as it does with us being one of the better sides in the division. There are however still tweaks to be made to make us the complete side.

This is pretty much spot on. xG is a good indicator of performance which generally equals results over a long period of time. Worth noting that are a couple of different xG models that alter slightly that have us better off than the one posted in this thread.

For us, it signifies that there is work to do and potentially highlights how big of a loss Diangana would be or if we suffered injuries to an outstanding talent like Pereira.

38
West Bromwich Albion FC / Re: Charlie Austin
« on: December 16, 2019, 11:45:53 AM »
I have been saying since we signed him that he is finished and that has proven to be incorrect in recent weeks. What is true is that physically he is not the player he was and that he doesn't bring a great amount to the team in the system we play. He is however still a very good finisher, I think this from steefeet describes the situation perfectly:

Unfortunately, for him, he is the perfect sub. If a striker comes on with 20 mins left, it's usually because we are either chasing the game or out of sight so the team will be set up to attack, which is perfect for old Charlie as he is pretty much guaranteed chances.


39
West Bromwich Albion FC / Re: System tactics personnel
« on: December 15, 2019, 02:26:49 PM »
Interestingly according to Danilo Butorovic and Slaven alluded to it as well, though it didn't seem obvious to me at the time, we switched to 3-5-2 late on yesterday. With Diangana possibly going back to West Ham (and of course he is now injured) there have been rumblings of a possible tinkering of the way we set up. Is 3-5-2 going to be another option for us moving forward?

Formations are how you start out but what actually happens in the game on and off the ball are the actual systems you play. You could argue in recent weeks we have been 352, certainly on the ball, think back to Brostol City at home. Ferguson tucked in to make a three at times, Gibbs played like a left midfielder and Diangana played very high, almost like another forward (I guess it would be a 3412 as Pereira stayed in the 10 position but you can see my point).

40
West Bromwich Albion FC / Re: System tactics personnel
« on: December 15, 2019, 10:54:52 AM »
play the right footed Edwards

This would be my solution. Although right footed, Edwards is similar in terms of hugging the flank and primarily being a dribbler. I'm all for us providing academy products minutes so I may be biased. I think Bilic will do this or put Pereira wide left, Robson-Kanu as the 10 (he referred to him as a 10 earlier in the season) and bring in Austin,  with Zohore reappearing on the bench.

In terms of longer term, I'd be looking to bring in reinforcements for the three behind the striker. Obviously in case Diangana goes but even if he stays. There are players there that can play both sides, like Phillips, so there are options. Bowen for example could come in on the right and Phillips switch across. I think Krovinovic has shown he is certainly more of an 8 than a 10, sure he can play there when we need better possession but in terms of how we play, I now see him as the like for like replacement for Sawyers.

41
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: Pre Match Chat
« on: December 11, 2019, 10:02:52 AM »
As others have said, full strength side with Furlong in for Gibbs and Ferguson moving left. I'd be tempted to bring in Edwards for Phillips with Diangana going left but that would be it in terms of rotation. I can see Bilic bringing in Austin for Robson-Kanu tonight.

42
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: After Match Debate
« on: December 09, 2019, 03:32:44 PM »
We were brilliant yesterday, especially on the ball but were decent off it as well. We have been good all season but the last three games have really stepped it up and are absolutely dominating games. I have said all season that Leeds are the best in the division but I think it is neck and neck now and as pointed out, it feels like we haven't quite peaked yet.

Ajayi, Sawyers, Pereira and Diangana have totally transformed us into a side that plays good football with pace and guile and one that is also able to press the opposition higher up the field. I feel it is also no accident that are game has seemingly been elevated since Ferguson has returned from suspension, as a defensive full back (he isn't bad on the ball by any stretch) he allows us to have the other full back very high which helps to stretch the opposition whilst he stays back.

Negatives from yesterday for me:

Johnstone is rooted to his line from corners too often, he really needs to try and eradicate this from his game . If promoted, we will be giving away more corners and free kicks as well as being less likely to outscore the opposition, this weakness will be massively exploited. Unlike others, I like Johnstone but this is a weak area that he needs to improve.

Was Gibbs getting injury avoidable? Did he need to play the third game in 12 days when we have Furlong, a good attacking full back, ready and raring to go coming off of the back of his couple of months out? Might be harsh but worth mentioning.

The above is just looking at areas we can maybe improve but we were absolutely fantastic yesterday and long may it continue. Congrats to Bilic and his coaching team.

43
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: In Game Chat
« on: December 08, 2019, 12:57:04 PM »
Really pleased, we are a good side. Losds of positives however Johnstone at corners is a major weakness and Swansea know this, pack the box and put an in-swinger on him. Unlike others, I quite rate Johnstone but this is a serious flaw.

44
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: Bristol City - A quick look at the opponents
« on: November 27, 2019, 04:28:01 PM »
Enjoyed this, thanks TheBrom

45
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: Team
« on: November 27, 2019, 04:26:43 PM »
Johnstone

Ferguson
Ajayi
Bartley
Gibbs

Livermore
Sawyers

Phillips
Pereira
Diangana

Robson-Kanu

46
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: Team
« on: November 11, 2019, 10:30:58 AM »
This is a tough one, without having seen Ajayi in the middle of the park, he may well be the answer especially with Hegazi ready to come in. However I am not sure that Bilic sees that as an option, I think he sees him solely as a centre back although I could be wrong. presuming that Ajayi isn't an option, I think I would go with this:

Johnstone

Furlong
Ajayi
Bartley
Gibbs

Harper
Brunt

Pereira
Krovinovic
Diangana

Robson-Kanu

Bond, Hegazi, Townsend, Barry, Phillips, Edwards, Zohore,

It doesn't feel right as I am shifting Pereira wide but I think Krovinovic as the 10 would help the midfield pivot. Harper needs minutes, whether for us or elsewhere and I think he should be given the chance.

47

I'd want to see Bartley and Hegazi paired at centre-back, with Romaine and Ajayi in front of them.


Whilst I have called for a ball winning upgrade on Livermore at some stage, I wouldn't be moving Ajayi into midfield. His pace allows us to play high up the field and with his ability on the ball and how adept he is at carrying the ball, he is every inch the modern day centre back with huge upside back there. Although in his mid-twenties, he hasn't played many full seasons, if any, solely as a centre back and I think he will get better and better.

48
I've really enjoyed the analysis and debate on this thread - the forum at its best.

As others have mentioned, we play quite an attacking style that leaves the defensive unit exposed: full backs get forward, wide players stay quite high and press high and our number 10 also stays and presses high. At times our defensive unit numerically is a 5. We still however can and should be conceding less goals, especially the way in which control most games.

A weakness defensively is Sawyers. I think (without going back over the goals conceded to analyse) that runners run off the back of him too easily and also that he is often dragged wide (as our wide players play high) when he would be better served protecting the centre of the pitch. Sawyers is however the heartbeat of this side and the key cog and what he brings to is in terms of passing ability, dictating the tempo and playmaking is worth his defensive deficiencies in my view, which of course can be worked on. A good way to counter this would be to field an outstanding ball winning midfielder alongside him. Livermore is having a good season but is not an outstanding ball winner. If we compare him to other midfielders in other possession based teams, you can see from the tackles per game (source: whoscored.com) where he lies:

WBA = Livermore 2.1
Fulham = Arter 2.6/ Reed 1.4
Leeds = Phillips 4.1 
QPR = Cameron 1.3/Scowen 2.4

Livermore makes a good amount of tackles per game but like I said, is not outstanding like say a Kalvin Phillips and getting an outstanding ball winner would help us for sure. I think Livermore is good at our level but should we go up, we would need upgrading.

As others have mentioned, whilst Bartley is having a good season, I think replacing him with a better ball playing centre back, which Hegazi is, could also help cut out a couple of goals against but that is without any science. Bartley has better passing stats than Ajayi this year in terms of pass completion and being dispossessed but as we all know, Ajayi strides forward and also looks to play more progressive balls forward than Bartley, again no statistical evidence to back this up though.

I also agree with the points that it could also be a mentality thing and also the way in which the opposition approach us. Whilst we are conceding too many goals, I don't feel overly concerned, especially as we are scoring them too.

49
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: Team
« on: October 23, 2019, 04:14:54 PM »
I disagree about sitting Krovinovic alongside Sawyers though. We are already lacking physicality from midfield

It wouldn't want it to be a go-to strategy but for teams that we know are going to sit deep, I think it is a viable option. Perhaps it is too risky from the start - it would also lose us something defending set-pieces also.

50
Albion Matchday Forum / Re: Team
« on: October 23, 2019, 11:50:16 AM »

Now is the time to bring Hegazi back in. Bartley hasn't particularly had any major ricks in the past few games, but I believe we will look a lot more assured as a defensive unit with Hegazi, a true leader and beast of a man, in there. We are shipping goals for fun at home, something has to change.


I also think Hegazi makes us harder to play against because he is better on the ball than Bartley. You can't wait for Bartley to have it and stand off closing off the passing lanes with Hegazi as he is more likely to find the pass. This in turn will hopefully help us concede less.

In terms of team selection, it depends what Charlton are likely to do. Will they press up against us and squeeze the space in midfield initially how Barnsley started or will they sit in deep from the off. If they sit deep, we will probably want a left footer at left back to provide natural width and may want Krovinovic in alongside Sawyers. If they try to squeeze the space in midfield then I think Phillips or an option to run in behind is a must so that we can stretch them and force them deeper, giving us more room to play. If Phillips is unavailable to provide this option, starting Robson-Kanu on the right is probably the closest thing in terms of the profile of player and ability to run in behind and come central.


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