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Replacing 3 best players = patience required

Discussion in 'General Blades Chat' started by The Bohemian, Aug 11, 2014.



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  1. The Bohemian

    The Bohemian Member

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    Maguire, Brayford and Coady were widely recognised as last season's top Blades performers. Murphy was another name included on some lists. For various reasons, none of my 'top 3' are available this season.


    Blades fans have become accustomed, since at least the 1960s, to seeing the club's best players sold off for short term gain, to the long term detriment of the team. The loss of the three key players in question was only more palatable because two were loanees and the other made it clear he wanted to leave, but this does nothing to alleviate the problem of replacing them.


    Cloughie's transfer market dealings to date provide cause for confidence in his ability to identify players - for example Brayford, Harris and Scougall - who can improve the team. The three named all replaced inconsistent and/or limited performers - Hill, McMahon and McGinn et al. Replacing consistently outstanding performers – for example Maguire, Brayford and Coady - is an altogether more challenging proposition.


    It is too early to confidently assess how effective Cloughie has been in replacing these three key players but a few early observations can be made.


    McGahey certainly looks the part and evidently carries the confidence of the coaching staff given his selection ahead of Butler and Collins. However, he is an 18 year old rookie with very little Football League experience so it would be foolhardy to expect him to perform regularly to the level Maguire was at in the latter part of his Blades career. Butler looks currently as though he has been signed as a cover player. It seems reasonable therefore to assert that the team has been weakened in central defence.


    Cloughie's decision to play Ben Davies at right-back ahead of Brayford's assumed replacement, Alcock, suggests either or both a lack of confidence in Collins and a lack of conviction in Alcock's attacking qualities. Davies is a useful utility player with a talent for delivering dead-balls. He shows very little appetite (probably justified given his {lack of} pace) for running at opponents and his defensive positioning is weak. Consequently the team looks far weaker at right-back and this is a big problem if Cloughie intends to continue with a counter-attacking approach.


    Finally, Liverpool's insistence on a significant fee for Coady was trumped by Wallace's availability on a free from Tranmere. There is no reason, at this point, to believe that Wallace won't prove to be a capable player but there is every reason to be concerned about his recent injury record and ability to withstand the rigour of a 50-60 game season. The emergence of young Louis Reed provides further options in this department and he is clearly a player of great potential. But, as a just-turned seventeen year old boy lacking physical stature, he cannot be expected to play two games per week over an extended period. No such doubts existed concerning young Coady, who proved his resilience and ability over the course of a full and very eventful season. Here was a player at the start of his league career who scored goals, made assists, had a great engine and very rarely wasted possession. If we are to believe the comments attributed to the player it seemed that Coady was keen to return to the Blades and I can't help but see the decision not to re-sign him as a blunder that will return to bite. Until Wallace and/or Reed prove otherwise it seems fair to assume that Coady's loss has weakened the team from an attacking midfield perspective.


    The team is about more than 3 players and it can be confidently argued that Cloughie has improved the team in other areas - Higdon for Porter springs quickly to mind. But, as stated earlier, it is easier to replace under-performers than star-performers and it is star-performers that make the difference between automatic promotion and also-rans. At this point it is unclear whether any of Cloughie's other signings are likely to develop into the 'star-performers' needed to secure a top 2 spot.


    Had the Blades been able to keep Maguire, Brayford and Coady, whilst signing a decent striker and a few cover players, promotion favouritism would have seemed fully justified. Now it seems much less clear.


    Like most Blades supporters, I remain very confident in the manager's ability to build a promotion winning team. It may just require a little more patience.
     
    Sirius, Dkc, groveblade and 10 others like this.

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  2. PeterNdlovu081

    PeterNdlovu081 COCK PISS PARTRIDGE

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    3 best players?

    Haven't you heard? Maguire was wank apparently.
     
    SwissBlade likes this.
  3. Woodwardfan

    Woodwardfan Woodwardfan

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    Clough tried to replace your 3 best players last Saturday. He also tried to replace Collins, Doyle, Baxter as well, by choice. Not only that, he replaced them with a 17 year old, an 18 year old and a defender who fancies playing in midfield, not defensive midfield but attacking midfield.

    Far too much to change at once and disruptive. He must have felt this necessary on pre-season form and attitude and why that should be the case is quite worrying.

    New captain, a centre forward too, while he was at it. Astonishing really.
     
  4. metalblade

    metalblade Something's got to give

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    Patience required .................. fuck me after 90 years of winning nothing (Div 4 apart) only saints (and I don't mean Southampton) have more patience than Blades fans
     
  5. Bladesman

    Bladesman The Great Grumbleduke

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    Agreed he changed far too much.

    We as fans have never had patience but mess with starting 11 like that was always a big gamble.
     
  6. Latters

    Latters Active Member

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    We've been waiting two and a half years for us to replace Ched. It was even longer for Brown and McCall (if you can say we ever really did). With the number of bodies coming in, I'd fancy it being a similar period of time before we replace the three you mentioned. I think Clough has already tried.

    Like you, I'm happy enough with Magahey in place of Maguire. However, we have tried to replace Coady, who managed fifty odd games last season, with Wallace, who has yet to manage 90 minutes for us, to my knowledge (how did he pass a medical?) and Basham, who Blackpool fans describe as a destroyer with poor distribution, and we've replaced Brayford, an attacking full back with excellent stamina, which is pivotal to how we play, with Alcock, who is not renowned by Peterborough fans for his attacking prowess, and Davies, a slow, ageing wide midfielder who delivers the odd good corner or free kick.

    Quality, not quantity was the mantra prior to the signings, but the evidence on display flies in the face of this statement. I would have preferred fewer, better players coming in.

    Unfortunately, "steady" is a word that has been used too often to describe the players we've signed. We don't want or need steady, we want above average at this level.
     
  7. WhiteHawk

    WhiteHawk New Member Since August 2009

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    Basically, we've lost 3 quality players and replaced them with about 8 mediocre players. I'm not sure this seasons squad is as good as the one that took us to 7th, and Wembley, last season.
     
  8. JJBlade

    JJBlade Active Member

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    Season after season after season after season after season after season after season the same things get said. The fans are amazing considering the rough end of the stick we get.
    We have to sit around for nine decades watching whilst every other mid/largish football club has their day to win something or achieve something, we have to sit around whilst other club thrills it's fans every so often with excellent players turning up even if only occasionally, and whilst every other club just gets on with it our club moans and whines about agents, signing on fees, wages, transfer fees, relaying the pitch, ground safety costs, broken faxes and pretty much anything else that costs money. As if other clubs don't have the same problems.

    It's no secret that the two areas of the football pitch that cost the most money are those that can put the ball in the net and those that create the chances to put the ball in the net, we have constantly had to make do without either.

    this means only one type of football can be successful at Bramall Lane and that's hoof ball. This might get very limited success but will never be fervently supported or enjoyed.
     
  9. judge

    judge Well-Known Member

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    Its not patience thats required its money unfottunately that only moves one way at brammal lane
     
  10. The Bohemian

    The Bohemian Member

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    Agree that "patience" is understandably in short supply but what really is the alternative?

    Cloughie can't be blamed for losing Maguire and Brayford. He presumably took a view that Wallace is a more than capable replacement for Coady: time will tell on this one.
     
  11. Worksop_Blade

    Worksop_Blade Member

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    It would be less frustrating if NC Hadn't decided to ditch the remaining players from last season in favour of questionable replacements.
    Howard
    Brayford
    Collins
    Maguire
    Freeman
    Flynn
    Doyle
    Scougall
    Coady
    Murphy
    Baxter


    The team that beat Coventry 2-1 on the last day turned into:

    Howard
    Davies
    Alcock
    McGahey
    Harris
    Flynn
    Basham
    Reed
    Murphy
    Scougall

    Higdon

    That team lost 1-0 to Coventry without even a fart of an effort.

    Rotherham United on Saturday started with 5 players that had got promoted from League Two, proof that settled sides win things.
     
  12. sitwell

    sitwell Well-Known Member

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    Got Ronnie Moore working for us at the moment ,he says Wallace is a great player and will be a star when he gets fit.
     
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  13. Oreyt

    Oreyt A Right Member

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    I'm pretty fucking certain it isn't.

    We had three important players who were capable of playing at a higher level.

    I suppose it's wait and see if he pulls off any other impressive loans.
     
  14. cooperblade

    cooperblade Active Member

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    We didn't though - we had one player capable of playing at a higher level. Cardiff and Liverpool had the other two.

    I've had a good chuckle in recent seasons at how weds have had teams built on sand that were only a recall away from falling apart. Unfortunately, we left ourselves in the same position. Great loans in the short-term but maybe damaging in the medium/long-term in that they've now left us struggling to match expectations and to hit the heights of the latter part of last term.
     
  15. Bergen Blade

    Bergen Blade Well-Known Member

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    I saw one of Cardiff's right backs, Kévin Théophile-Catherine, has been sent on loan to St Etienne with a view to buy. I think Clough was hoping that he would become Solskjær's first choice right back when he returned from injury, making Brayford available.
     
  16. bartman

    bartman Well-Known Member

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    Whilst your comments about Brayford and HM1 I agree with,I am amazed that some fans are continuing this myth about Coady.

    He wasn't one of our top 3 players last season,(check the ratings on this site for a starting point),this physical stature he supposedly used in games rarely materialised and yes ,he did have energy but how much was productive ? How many games was he dominant in and drove or even influenced us to take control of a game ? He was not this wonderful player that he is being made out to be

    For me he was a reasonable L1 player and that was all.
     
  17. grafikhaus

    grafikhaus Kraft durch Freude

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    As for 'replacing three best players', Maguire wanted out and there's nothing you can do when things deteriorate as far as that. (See Agard at Toytown.) Brayford was just a happy coincidence - a player who was playing way below his capabilities in the Third. He's now rediscovered his mojo and playing at the level he deserves to be at. Happy memories but time to move on.

    However, the one that's really pissing me off is Coady. £400k? And we couldn't match/beat it?

    But this brings me to (possibly) a deeper malaise. Apparently Liverpool 'wanted' around a £million (and per-leese don't quote the old 'They knew we had the Maguire money' - Liverpool lose more than that down the back of the sofa.) So did NC do something to piss Liverpool off? And Bruce at Hull? And McLaren at Derby?

    Listening to NC on FH last night, it's becoming plainer by the day that his style is 'My way or highway.' See Butler, Brandy. Well that's fine if you're Mourinho. Don't get me wrong - this is a massive season for us and the last thing we need is the lottery of the managerial merry-go-round. Again. But team selections, purchases, the failure to address our attacking weakness (after 2 seasons) just don't add up.

    Something is deeply wrong down at BDTBL.
     
  18. Rodley

    Rodley Well-Known Member

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    Balanced assessment there, but surely you could shoehorned in an amusing quip re: "game changing investment"? Or a lengthy conspiracy theory about Butler? ;)
     
  19. Jim Chimmerney

    Jim Chimmerney Can hear the 'Cod Army' roar from his back garden

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    Big 'if' though sitters as he seems to have the same problem that limited him to around 16 games last season.
     
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  20. OllyBlade

    OllyBlade Member

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    Too exhausted from already chucking my toys out of the pram to be patient :) Think I'll just slip into a coma until we're out of League One. 5-6 years should maybe just about do it.
     

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