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17 Sep 2020 06:22:14
Wow Guys, come on!

Lots of interesting reaction to last night!

For me, at the moment everything is being done for a reason, survival in the premiership and the selection of the very best players we can muster from within and without to do that.

If you make 11 changes and play new and strange defensive combinations to test players, you aren't going to get the most smooth performance and we didn't.

Poveda, seems to have helped himself . Bogusz has definitely come back into reckoning. Other than that Alioski was Alioski and never gave up, not a bad quality! The rest will have helped Bielsa and Orta decide, what more we need, who stays with the first team squad and who we could sell or loan out.

Bielsa doesn't need cup competitions and he still has the under 23 and under 21 cup to use. He wants a settled squad, identified under 23 players and plenty of time with those players. If you want a manager who likes a massive squad, don't have Bielsa, he ain't going to change.

Agree3 Disagree0

17 Sep 2020 07:19:39
Spanish I always admire your calmness but that was a reality check about our strength in depth surely . I appreciate that was a scratch team but really no one looked ready for the first team . I disagree about Poveda . First half he was awful . Second half probably our best player but that’s not saying much and he was far too easily brushed off the ball . In the prem that would lead to quick transition and goals against us . I’ve already commented about TR and KC, but what about Shack? He couldn’t defend to save his life . A far cry from his performance at full back two seasons ago against Swansea . What happens if Ayling gets injured? Looks like he’s gone backwards to me . Bogusz also not ready to fill Klichy’s boots, trying to do too much and rarely coming off . Bottom line what happens if we lose three key long term injuries . We are sunk!

17 Sep 2020 08:20:37
For me I was looking for some of our fringe players to step up and show everyone they are pushing hard for a place in the first team reckoning, was quite shocking and maybe a reality check on how packing in depth our squad truly is.
Like I said God help us if we have to rely on the majority of these players in a crisis, disappointed with the likes of Roberts who I still believe isn't as good as he thinks he is, Douglas and kiko both need to leave for both their own sakes and the teams. Alioski gives his all when he is interested but unlikely to be a regular starter in the premiership. Rodrigo will take time to bed in but should be ok, the rest probably lower league standard at best.

17 Sep 2020 08:23:33
Red Hot, understand the frustration but I think these kind of cup performances are a by product of Bielsas style which pays dividends in other ways. Bielsa improves players by intensive training, drilling and working together in small squads. Last nights team will not have had that emphasis as a group, thrown together with a young Cresswell in CB and Davis played out of position.

Bielsa is not going to change the way he does things, if you don’t think that approach is right for the premiership don’t employ him. For him the answer to injuries is not having a bigger squad but a more flexible squad with players who can cover at least two positions and identified under 23s for a short term cover.

If you bring in more players that Bielsa doesn’t want, he just won’t play them, like Augustin!

17 Sep 2020 08:49:41
Then bring in players he identifies and wants, does not make sense to employ a highly paid manager if he isn't getting a say in recruitment. I personally don't believe Bielsa would have signed again if he wasnt having a say in the players coming in.

17 Sep 2020 09:59:37
Apart from Struik and possibly Davis and Shackleton (as a midfielder not defender) not one of the U23s is anywhere near EPL level.

Radz, Orta and I assume Bielsa are playing Russian Roulette with our premiership survival without signing a quality goalie, CD, cdm, cam and a proven. goalscorer.

17 Sep 2020 11:03:36
Phil Hay is on record that Bielsa has the final say on all recruitment . But he doesn’t negotiate the deals . He’s clearly approved De Paul for example who would make a massive difference at both ends of the pitch and I just think we are trying to be too clever in trying to save a few million quid when we need him badly as TR ain’t up to it and Pablo can’t be relied on for every game .

17 Sep 2020 11:52:00
Bazooka, I think you might get 2 of your 5 with one more, possibly GK coming in on loan, Kiko needs to go but whose going to pay those wages.

17 Sep 2020 12:57:36
Spanish hope so
As three further quality additions would be most welcome and needed.

{Ed0666's Note - I’m under the impression you need at least that many. Eds 001 thinks it will only be one more. Let’s wait and see.

17 Sep 2020 14:04:01
Spanish, even though you always articulate well and are always logical in your posts,

There comes a time when the right words are ultimately just that WORDS, you say players need to be more flexible, but flexibility is 1 attribute they MAY HAVE, but ability is 1 that a whole host of our back up squad are really really lacking .

We are seriously lightweight in depth and hoping for flexibility is useless, because we will get pasted once the toll of the season +injuries inevitably takes its toll, years of poor purchases and underinvestment are right in front centre view now, because shacks, , ali, roberts etc are not good enough in the big stage.

17 Sep 2020 20:19:45

Our backup up squad is full of talent. They just didn't gel yesterday.

We are a first year PL side. We won't have the strength in depth of most of the sides that have been in this league for a few years. That is something all promoted Championship side gain over time (Watford, Newcastle, Bournemouth and recently Sheffield United) . Those backup players will possibly be first team regulars in a few years, but they need time to reach those standards.

Luckily the Bielsa model doesn't require 2 players for every position. He improves each player in a number of positions such that at any time of injury there are options for him to move in to that position without affect the overall play.



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