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Leeds 1-1 Wolves: Verdict Thread

prawnking

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To be fair, perhaps I explained it poorly (very likely). The preference would be for us to win every game while playing sexy football. If we had held on for the win v Leeds and in the process moved up to 4th in the table, despite having reservations over the tactics/performance, it would be difficult to argue with that.

If we lost every game playing how we did v Spurs, despite being entertained, we'd have still lost and people would have (rightly) been critical.

There has to be some middle-ground.

My main point here, is that we've literally flipped from creating loads and playing good football, to being a side that doesn't look like it can string three passes together. The results have been alright over the last 4-5 games, so the performances have kind of been swept under the carpet - but when we're defending for 60+ minutes against a side that we're more than capable of beating, it's only fair to question those tactics when we don't hold on for the win.

I agree about middle ground, I don't think some of the reaction from the majority of people to Saturday came from there.

The results haven't been 'alright' over the last five games, we're fifth in the form table for that period!

At no point have I said results are the be all and end all, or that I don't share some concerns about our performances, but I think there's a lot of blase attitudes around.

Every win in the PL is a big deal, a point away at Elland Road is hardly a gimme, and also this Holy Grail of 'playing great and getting points' is incredibly hard and usually requires massive investment to achieve.

I agree we're (very successfully) treading water, I also will be questioning it myself if it's the same in another 9 games, but for now I'm happy with some points on the board
 

prawnking

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Yeah I get that, and I'm exaggerating to make my point I guess, that the massive shift in approach to spawn a few points has just frustrated me a fair bit, and is I think quite short termist, and that if we're gonna be in a meh position, we may as well be entertaining at the same time

Tbf it's not just a few points, it's 13 from the last 18, that's not inconsiderable surely?
 

northfield wolf

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A great points return from the last few games, but we were shit on Saturday and managed a point. if anyone had told me after the Brentford game that we would get 10 points out of the next 12, i probably would have laughed at them.
 

Jinky

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The results haven't been 'alright' over the last five games, we're fifth in the form table for that period!
Tbf it's not just a few points, it's 13 from the last 18, that's not inconsiderable surely?

It's a good points haul. But this *sort* of goes back to my initial point (the one you keep bringing up) about performances/points. When we lost three on the bounce at the start of the season - my eyes told me we were playing good football and that the points would eventually come. So I was ok with this.

Prior to Leeds, we'd won three on the bounce - but my eyes told me we were regressing in style, tactically and in overall performance. We were extremely lucky to get anything from Villa, for example.

Against Leeds, we neither won the game, OR showed any sign of improving any of the elements mentioned above (tactics/style/performance). That's why I'm not specifically looking at the points total column, and that's why I've reacted in the way I have (I can only talk about myself, not others) in relation to this specific performance.

Hopefully that makes more sense, mate.
 

Jasperwolf

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Why did Nuno “leave”?
A standard of football was attritional
B He had been asking for players in January and got Willian Jose
C He was stubborn and stuck to his 15 lieutenants
A combination of all of those is true. Lage got the gig via Mendes. We all know that. The least Shi could have done was spend a bit to back him. He didn’t and still Lage tried to play his more attacking football. We lost all three games. Lage then reverted to a hybrid of what the players knew and what he wanted. He is in my opinion, still working on that hybrid.
We were not a good watch last year and won’t be this without new personnel it’s as simple as that.
 

Deutsch Wolf

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We haven't particularly changed the style, the structure is still exactly as it was at the start of the season. Just we were playing better then (without scoring) than we are now.

He isn't able to play what he wants, which is pretty obviously a back four, as we don't have the players to do so and when he did try it in pre-season we looked like we'd be on course to concede 80+ over a league campaign.
 

Alan

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If you're playing "good football" and losing, is it really still good football?
 

BGreenWolf

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I really don't see how you can look at three games where we had no goals and no points on one hand, six games where we've had nine goals and thirteen points on the other, and not understand why people might prefer the latter.

Preferring how we played at the start of the season, on an aesthetic level, I get. Not understanding why it wasn't sustainable, I don't.
 

Del Woppio

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I really don't see how you can look at three games where we had no goals and no points on one hand, six games where we've had nine goals and thirteen points on the other, and not understand why people might prefer the latter.

Preferring how we played at the start of the season, on an aesthetic level, I get. Not understanding why it wasn't sustainable, I don't.
It's not as if that style was destined to give us a 0-1 every week for the rest of time, though. You don't create that many quality chances and not pick up points over a reasonable period
 

Johnny75

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If you're playing "good football" and losing, is it really still good football?
You can play good football as we did in the first three games but have unforced errors and poor finishing.

Those are individual errors rather than pattern of play. Our pattern of play was very good in those first 3 games and most of the Watford game.

I would say our style was very different to Nuno, concerted press, better movement off the ball and some great angled passing, higher defensive line and more defenders coming forward with the ball.

I thought he had it working but he's decided to revert to something else. I think he'd have got the same points using the same style fwiw
 

Deutsch Wolf

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I don't think he has reverted to anything, the plan is more or less the same. It's still a higher line than under Nuno, it's still the same shape, he's still asking everyone to do broadly speaking the same job. As a team, our passing has dropped right off (to an extent, corresponding with Neves starting to miss out on the starting XI here and there) and Adama has put in a series of largely poor performances after creating a lot and beating his man frequently in the opening games. That's not tactical, that's our players playing like shit.

Ultimately we're never going to score many, our central midfield is basically a goal-free zone from open play, our wingbacks don't chip in, Adama hardly ever scores and nor does Podence (I have limited faith in Trincao scoring 5+ too, good player though he is). Nothing changes until the personnel changes. Neto is injured which is a big loss, we sold Jota well over a year ago and haven't come close to replacing his output (don't anyone dare bring up Matt "4 league goals a season max" Doherty here :D )
 

sycophantia

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I don't think he has reverted to anything, the plan is more or less the same. It's still a higher line than under Nuno, it's still the same shape, he's still asking everyone to do broadly speaking the same job. As a team, our passing has dropped right off (to an extent, corresponding with Neves starting to miss out on the starting XI here and there) and Adama has put in a series of largely poor performances after creating a lot and beating his man frequently in the opening games. That's not tactical, that's our players playing like shit.

Ultimately we're never going to score many, our central midfield is basically a goal-free zone from open play, our wingbacks don't chip in, Adama hardly ever scores and nor does Podence (I have limited faith in Trincao scoring 5+ too, good player though he is). Nothing changes until the personnel changes. Neto is injured which is a big loss, we sold Jota well over a year ago and haven't come close to replacing his output (don't anyone dare bring up Matt "4 league goals a season max" Doherty here :D )
Hopefully Hwang is the 'Jota replacement' but preferably he'll improve his all round game too
 

Deutsch Wolf

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I can see Hwang being a more reliable finisher than Jota who was always ultra-streaky for us in front of goal, but I don't see him ever having the concerted influence on games that Diogo had. That spell from Chelsea at home until the Watford semi-final is as good as I've seen from any Wolves player since Bully in the late 80s. Not just the goals, how much he impacted on everything.

Ah, if Nuno hadn't taken him off at Wembley...


(We'd have got smashed by City and I'd have been a few hundred quid lighter)
 

Alan

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I don't think he has reverted to anything, the plan is more or less the same. It's still a higher line than under Nuno, it's still the same shape, he's still asking everyone to do broadly speaking the same job. As a team, our passing has dropped right off (to an extent, corresponding with Neves starting to miss out on the starting XI here and there) and Adama has put in a series of largely poor performances after creating a lot and beating his man frequently in the opening games. That's not tactical, that's our players playing like shit.

Ultimately we're never going to score many, our central midfield is basically a goal-free zone from open play, our wingbacks don't chip in, Adama hardly ever scores and nor does Podence (I have limited faith in Trincao scoring 5+ too, good player though he is). Nothing changes until the personnel changes. Neto is injured which is a big loss, we sold Jota well over a year ago and haven't come close to replacing his output (don't anyone dare bring up Matt "4 league goals a season max" Doherty here :D )
Bolded the bit about our wingbacks because as, uhm, erratic as their attacking play can be, they've also been key in quite a few of the goals we have scored. Weird circumstance there.

If we keep doing the things we're doing, I'm excited to see Semedo get in positions like he was for our goal more frequently. Obviously he had a moment of madness (arguably, I still think it was a bit soft but understand why it was given), but his contribution to the goal was sublime. We need that from him more often whilst we're still figuring out how to remedy the LB/LWB position.

Guess it was only a matter of time before the left flank was an issue defensively again! We'd been spoiled by the likes of Golbourne, Douglas, and Jonny (and yes, I'm not mentioning Doc's time at LB because no one should have to think about those days).
 

Johnny75

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I don't think he has reverted to anything, the plan is more or less the same. It's still a higher line than under Nuno, it's still the same shape, he's still asking everyone to do broadly speaking the same job. As a team, our passing has dropped right off (to an extent, corresponding with Neves starting to miss out on the starting XI here and there) and Adama has put in a series of largely poor performances after creating a lot and beating his man frequently in the opening games. That's not tactical, that's our players playing like shit.

Ultimately we're never going to score many, our central midfield is basically a goal-free zone from open play, our wingbacks don't chip in, Adama hardly ever scores and nor does Podence (I have limited faith in Trincao scoring 5+ too, good player though he is). Nothing changes until the personnel changes. Neto is injured which is a big loss, we sold Jota well over a year ago and haven't come close to replacing his output (don't anyone dare bring up Matt "4 league goals a season max" Doherty here :D )
Can't agree with much here. There was a clear difference in the way we played the first 4 games and the last 5.

Much more movement off the ball which makes passing easier for those players pressed. Moutinho spent an awful lot of time on the edge of the opposition back line. At the moment we're so deep he's stood on Saiss's toes.

Adama was making some great runs, he just can't finish, that is the manager asking him to do things he can't. I thought Hwang would be the Adama replacement and we carry on doing what we did, but it's really regressed to static players hammering the balls into the channels.
 

Deutsch Wolf

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I don't think there is :D

I'm not seeing your free flowing football vs Watford, for instance. How many saves did Lloris actually make against us?

It's a squad that's grown a little stale (and some of the longer serving players are starting to fade a touch, as much as it pains me to say), sometimes we'll look alright, sometimes we won't. I don't think it's Doctor Bruno and Mr Lage, put it that way. Tactically I'd be very hard pushed to say anything has changed. I suppose ultimately we didn't see us lead in any of the first three games, so who knows how we'd have set up if say, Trincao had scored after 5 minutes vs Man Utd. Maybe we'd have "tried to defend"* for 85 minutes on that day as well.




*I disagree that this is what we tried to do on Saturday, it's a narrative that I don't think stands up to much
 

Del Woppio

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Dan, forgive me if I'm misreading*, but surely you aren't saying that there's not been a massive shift in approach after the first three games? Like I haven't watched the games back recently, but in my head the change is like comparing buffet world with beans on toast.

*I'm neither proud nor ashamed to say that I'm quite pissed whilst playing musical bingo in a holiday park
 

Deutsch Wolf

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I don't think it's a question of approach, it's just the good performances earned nothing and the average/crap performances somehow got reward.

The tactics honestly aren't markedly different and as I say, we don't know what we'd have done if we'd taken the lead vs Leicester/Spurs/Yernited because it never happened.

He hasn't parked the midfield two in front of the back three or stopped the wingbacks going forward, for instance. We're just not playing as well. But we're doing better. Go figure.
 

PuntsWolf

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Yes but at the same time we didn’t take the lead against Saints and made no real effort to score, were actually behind against Villa (then further behind) and made no effort to score until the end.

Admittedly against Saints Marcal and Podence were garbage, Hwang ran around a bit and Donck was in midfield, and Semedo offers nothing in an attacking sense. And then against Villa Hwang, Traore and Marcal were garbage, Donck was in midfield and Semedo offered nothing in an attacking sense.

I guess if in every game, half your team and the majority/all your attackers are playing badly/not fit for purpose then it might end up being dull, attritional football because they keep giving the ball away or do little with it when they have it.
 
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