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12 Jan 2020 22:56:20
Berm, if you're around, I can't accept your earlier contention that Pep's record shows that Bielsa's system doesn't work - and that part of the problem is that they do not bother about defence. Pep's record of league wins shows that the system can be very successful with the right players.

As for not bothering with defence, half off his ten most expensive signings at City have been defenders and another is his current first choice goalie. His two league titles there have been based on the second highest number of clean sheets for the respective seasons - 18 cleanies in 2017-18 and 20 the following year. Two of his key defensive assets were at the club when he arrived. Kompany and Fernandinho.

The departure of the former last summer and Pep's uncharacteristically Bielsa-like belief that the latter player can cover for that loss by being moved from DM, combined with Otamendi's dramatic loss of form have undermined the previously sound defence.
Going back to his first managerial role, at Barça, two of his first four signings were CB's -Martin Caceres and Gerard Pique, and another was Dani Alves at RB.

Agree2 Disagree0

13 Jan 2020 08:14:23
Forgot to include that injury to Aymeric Laporte further undermines both City's defensive solidity this season and your argument.

13 Jan 2020 08:45:08
Very good detail Clueless . BW will no doubt continue to bluster on this as usual but he just doesn't get it.

13 Jan 2020 09:08:03
I am not disagreeing with you 100%

a lot of what you say I agree with however it is not a black and white matter but with many grey areas

of course pep's/ belisa style can work and when it works it's great. But when it falls apart there is no plan B.

they defend on a bases of keep the ball and play well. which is great when it works. hence the league wins and our run of clean sheets this season. but when it ain't working there is no ability to defend or grit to grind out results. hence us under belisa when we fall apart and city fall apart a similar way

my point is man utd under fergouson could go through a bad spell of 15 games and still win most of them and keep clean sheets. The current liverpool team the same, same could be said of us under wilko and george grahams arsenal. when playing bad they can still grind out a clean sheet and win. because it is built from the back. agreed?

now with Belisa and pep's teams play bad, they don't keep the ball as well and team shape falls apart. now as they are not defensive coaches they conceed goals eaisly which costs them points

both leeds and city this season have dropped points due to weakness at corners (city near post on corners is a joke for a top team and they have dropped points over it)

you could argue pep should of done better in champs league considering how many times he has entered and the quality of his teams

you can certainly argue city should not be 175 points behind liverpool this year. liverpool have been amazing but city have dissapointed over all.

for pep spending on defender. yes but what type of defenders? ball playing pretty ones. the fact he has spent so much on defenders yet kompany was the best one (there when pep arrived) proves my point. pep can't pick out a defender, the fact they have failed to replace kompany speaks voloums and is why they are so far behind this year. same with the keepers edision is quality but he spent million on bravo who he worked with. what was that about?

so yes when good belisa and pep's style is great. but when things ain't going well cracks apear and it costs them and they can't fix things and find another way can they

imagine fergouson, shankly, graham or one of the greats with this city team. i could not imagine them falling apart in the same way

finally it was mention in fa cup game. belisa said 11 ways to cross a ball, 14 ways to shoot, 22 ways to pass and 12 ways to defend. says it all. masters in going forward but defence plays second fiddle. which ain't great when the going gets tough. best managers for me build from the back.

13 Jan 2020 09:42:15
This is the most interesting post in ages
No one is slagging anyone off and both sides have amazing good points of view

Thank you for allowing me, and others, to read it. It's been fascinating and I think both of you are offering your views very well.

13 Jan 2020 09:52:03
Any manager needs the right players for their system to work. Pep would struggle with our squad, as would Klopp. I still maintain what Bielsa has done with the tools at his disposal is nothing short of miraculous. If we want to do better we need stronger players. period.

13 Jan 2020 10:03:23
Spot on Alf.

13 Jan 2020 10:16:54
i agree alf that we need stronger players for belisa but i do think other managers would of got this team up. i have always said Wilde, Warnock, pearson, wagner etc. have got weaker squads promoted.

I think we are at a point now where it is twist or stick. do we stick with belisa and pray it works and we get over the line or do we twist and get in a manager who might give a new manager bounce and get us over the line. I think it is a tough call

was interesting watching the payers speak about belisa. bamford said he is distant and awkward, another player (cant remember who) said he is not one to put an arm around you. is it man management as much as tatics at this point?

personally of course I'm for twist if belisa throws it away again i think he will have to be put in stocks until we get promoted. with leeds falling apart again being played on repeate and in spanish with fans allowed to ro-sham-bo him with me first in line.

13 Jan 2020 10:18:57
cheers axe aprreaitce that mate.

13 Jan 2020 11:22:04
Berm - I'm sorry, but for all the words above, your still not right. Otamendi at City was very much the gritty, defence first sort of character you claim Pep doesn't go for. He was identified as the player to fill in for Kompany when injured and replace him when he retired. Unfortunately his form has fallen off a cliff this year, to the extent that apparently a poll of City fans in the local paper showed a majority wanted Fernandinho to partner Laporte when he returns from injury. This shows that Pep may have have been correct in his judgement that Fernandinho could play CB, but it is clear Citydo not have adequate cover at DM. Also, contrary to your evident belief, Laporte may be a ball playing CB, but he can also defend.
Going back to Barça, Pique could also step forward with the ball, but was a very able defender. And Caceres, being a Uruayan CB could certainly stick his foot in - later becoming a fan favorite at Juvenile for his gritty and aggressive style - and incidentally has shown over the years that he can be huge threat in the opposition box. If we had a player as good as him I'd be over the moon.
At Bayern, Benatia was Pep's only permanent CB signing, and while he was certainly a ball-player he could also do the gritty defensive work - and if Coops and White provided even half the threat (between them) he did in the opposition box, we'd be quite happy.
Oh and while I'm at it, you say that for all the times his teams have been in the Champions League he should have a better record. By my reckoning, this is his eleventh Champions League campaign - and he has won the title twice so far. Your great managerial hero Fergie had 23 campaigns and he won it how many times? - yes twice.

13 Jan 2020 11:56:13
Pep's success is one of the reasons I'm becoming infuriated with Bielsa and Radz. It is clear that with the right types of players - and crucially a deeper squad that can be rotated with little if any fall-off in results - Bielsaball can be very successful. It's Bielsa's apparent stubbornness - reinforced by Radz failure to invest sufficiently - that led them to fail at Leeds last year and are currently in very real danger of doing so again this time around.

13 Jan 2020 12:05:00
So whilst I disagree with you on your overall analysis re Bielsaball, I find myself increasingly agreeing with your thoughts on the situation at Leeds, though perhaps not those specifically on KP. I'm hoping that a reasonable January window may entice me to dip a toe in the hottub of hope, but if I thought there was any chance of Bielsa seeing that we do need reinforcements at CB (fat chance) , i'd be rather more hopeful.

13 Jan 2020 12:27:20
I'm sure Bielsa does see that we could use reinforcements at CB but at the price we are willing to pay wold probably prefer to stick with what we have, knowing anyone that is brought in for that kind of money will not be good enough anyway. We would need players of quality and they cost money that we are not willing to spend.

13 Jan 2020 12:30:09
Bermo, you say 'Wilde, Warnock, pearson, wagner etc. have got weaker squads promoted' but they were all squads that were created around the manager's preferred style of play. I doubt any of those would get a tune out of the current Leeds squad. And 'weaker' based on what? Sheff Utd are doing well in the Prem so their squad can't be that weak.

13 Jan 2020 12:36:25
cluess if you read all my statement and still insist i'm still not right in any way then that's your opinion.

my comments are not only on the type of defenders but how he sets them up to play and how he neglects the defensive side of the game (weakness on near corners and how easy it is to score past city when they ain't at it) is my point.

you mention these players saying youd love them at leeds of course they are multi million pounds worth of players they should be best in the world

as for fegouson argument. he managed an average team that he made great, yes in the end they had money and was successful but don't think you can compare them with Barcelona and byern and current city. Fergous won 2 in many years but with (in some ways) a lesser team with less money (at points) i think fergie did well at utd and did a job that only fergie could do

i don't think pep has done well at city and i don't think pep for all of his qualities has done a job only he could do. again with barca, byern and city maybe he should of done better in champs league

certainly with all the talent and money spent city should be 203947 points behind liverpool. everyone can see city have massive problems in defnece this year. due to pep and only pep. it is a problem with pep and belisa they love the beautiful game and ignore all ugly parts of it. great managers love the beuatiful game but can play ugly as well. that's my point

thats why i would have fergie over pep and warnock over belisa. when all else fails. win ugly.

13 Jan 2020 12:47:53
Alf, I wish I had your confidence that Bielsa can see the need for C B reinforcement - but he ran with just 2 senior CBs last year, and apparently only wanted to replace Pontus for this season. Last summer was the perfect opportunity for him to get in the numbers he actually wanted, he held the whip-hand in his contract negotiations, including his requirements for this season's squad.

13 Jan 2020 14:10:16
Berm - certainly not everything you wrote in those comments was wrong, but your basic contentions re Pep showing Bielsaball doesn't work and that he ignores the defensive side seem to be based almost entirely on this year at City - a season where a key defender has been absent due to injury and his hitherto grittiest defender- Otamendi has completely lost form - as has Ederson. You credited him for buying Ederson, but slagged him off for previously having brought in Bravo.
Your other hero Klopp - who in an ideal world would have been my first choice for Leeds long before he came to Liverpool - also didn't have a decent goalie until he got Alisson - or indeed any strong CB until he brought in VVD.
I never even suggested that only Pep could have achieved what he has with the players at his disposal - only that his success showed Bielsaball could work well. Yes of course some of the players he bought cost millions but so did other players, and those he chose in defence at Barça and Bayern were defensively strong, as well as being able to play out from the back.

13 Jan 2020 14:23:56
Do you lot not have jobs? 😂😂.



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