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Dicko & Bodvarsson's Lack of Goals


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Jan 26, 2017
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This one is something of a conundrum for me because both players do bring a lot to the team despite their lack of goals. But I would be interested to know what other fans think.

Currently I think Dicko has played 16 times this season (including subs ?) with no goals and Bodvarsson has played 25 times (including subs ?) with just 2 goals ?

There are many aspects to discuss, but with Dicko, he used to thrive on balls from Kevin MacDonald and two seasons ago his average in this league was a goal every 2/3 games. Did Kenny Jackett's style of play just suit him better ? Is he just taking time to adjust to the way that Paul Lambert wants us, and him, to play ? Or has his long term injury just robbed him of that extra yard of pace ? The fans have been very patient with him, probably because we can see that he works hard on the pitch and we are hoping it's only a matter of time before he starts scoring again. But how long should he get before we say enough is enough ? Is it enough for him to play well, or create chances without scoring, and still keep his place in the side ?

With Bodvarsson, his work rate looks more obvious on the pitch because of his physical stature and his strength ensures that, when he's up for it, he can out-muscle the strongest of defenders and cause havoc, which can inevitably create chances for others. Do we get the best out of him as an impact Sub ?

Either way, if this continues in the long term for both players and they still aren't scoring, and assuming that Lambert signs a Striker or two in the summer, will he persevere with one of them, (or both of them ?) on the basis that as long as the goals are coming and they are contributing towards the chances being created, they are justifying their inclusion in the side ? If Lambert signs an out-and-out Striker with a good goals per game ratio and he starts banging them in, where does that leave Dicko and Bodvarsson then ? Should Lambert then shuffle the formation and tactics to accommodate one of them ?

Is it feasible to keep rotating them both if they are not scoring ? I think it's a tough call for Lambert but I have every confidence in him and his experience to come up with the right solution. I'm interested to know how other fans view this ?
Ultimately it's not sustainable for strikers who play 30+ games a season to be scoring fewer than five goals a year. So it's not a situation that can continue indefinitely, even if they do bring a lot to the team, aren't playing badly at all in general terms and we are getting plenty of goals from elsewhere.

They've both got the next three months to prove that they can play a full part next season. If there isn't a serious upturn in output then they're both going to be extremely vulnerable to being replaced. I expect us to sign at least one striker regardless in the summer.

I would dispute that Dicko has lost pace, don't see that at all.
I would dispute that Dicko has lost pace, don't see that at all.

I'm not sure about this either and this is why I find it hard to explain why he has gone so long without scoring ? Would he be more effective in a different team under a different Manager ? It would crass to just say 'he's not the player he once was' but I think you're right, if things don't change, they might both have to make way for other Strikers that can score goals.
I think we will need to sign a striker that can score goals in this system, Dicko and Bod clearly cant on a regular basis. Someone like Chris Martin would be ideal IMO.
Really interesting post there progwolf. I think that both of our main strikers have a bit of leeway. Saying that, I am pretty confident already that the Weimann loan will be made permanent in the summer if we can so that puts a bit more pressure on.

For Nouha, he just needs one in off his arse and then hopefully we are back up and running. What I did like from coverage of the Liverpool game on MOTD is that they picked up on Nouha's role in the Weimann goal. His run pulled the other centre back away and allowed Helder to make that quality pass for the finish. And then you have the superb Bod effort at the end of the game that really deserved making the scoresheet. They both have loads to bring to the team but some goals would be handy soonest. Lets hope they smack up Burton.
Bod made a lovely run and shot that was eventually put away by Edwards against Barnsley. We've been basically playing catch up again since Wenga left. Confidence, the backline has strengthened up and are playing much better, midfield is battling and playing more football, so now its the turn of the forwards. Like Paddy said, one of the back or the arse for Bod and Dicko could be the perfect start of goals..
Of the 2 Bod's been unlucky not to have scored in each of the last 2 games - good save from the Barnsley keeper which resulted ultimately in the 3rd goal and only the shin of Lucas denying him at Pool with the keeper on his arse. Think it will come for him soon.

Nouha is a different problem - agree don't think he has lost any pace, but has no confidence. Before the injury he scored a number of goals by taking the shot first time before the defense, keeper (& indeed commentators) expected catching them off guard & not ready for it. From the games I have seen him play since he came back he does seem to want an extra touch to make sure, giving the keeper time to get into position & the defense time to close him down.

Hopefully getting one will start to bring back the confidence
Bod should've scored vs Barnsley.

It was a poor finish
Bod's record across his career shows he's never been particularly prolific. Clearly no goals since August isn't sustainable in the long run, but his 2 goals in 3/4 games at the start of the season and the quality of those finishes probably gave the impression he was something he isn't.

With Dicko, I believe every other aspect of his game is now at the same level prior to his injury bar the goals. He needs to stop snapping at chances and being too selfish, once he gets one I think he'll be away
I think much depends on the quality of player in midfield especially in the ten position. If you go for a passer of the ball such as Tom Cairney at Fulham your chance creation into the striker increases. Just looking at Cairney passing stats for the game against Burton last night he passed the ball 94 times with 89 accurate. I guess it depends how Paul Lambert wishes to set up his side and what qualities he looks for high in midfield.
On the face of it Bod has been unlucky. But top strikers always seem to find a way to score.
In Bodvarsson's case I think it's just that his finishing is a bit naff, think he's more the type that most would expect for a lone forward role given his stature but he's surprisingly mobile for a guy of his size and carries the ball well too, but we could see before he signed that he'd never scored that many anywhere in his career so can't see that suddenly changing anytime soon despite him generally playing well.

Dicko is a more difficult one to call I think, I didn't manage to catch up on the Liverpool game until Sunday and after seeing quite a bit of praise for him before viewing I have to say I was pretty disappointed, whilst he covered a lot of ground I don't think he really had any great influence on things for the most part. A couple of seasons ago it seemed that anything that thrown forward ended up with Dicko beating a defender to the ball, watching on TV something would look a hopeless punt forward and by the time the camera panned to follow it you'd have Dicko already on his way chasing it down but against Liverpool that sharpness seemed a distant memory. I'm not sure if he's lost a bit of acceleration or whether it's just anticipation but he largely got nowhere near anything of that ilk, he'd still give chase but all he was really doing was speeding up a pass from Klavan or Gomez without really making anything difficult for them, think it got to about half an hour in before he actually contested anything with anyone. He just didn't get into the game from what I saw, seemed like the Liverpool defenders always had a head start on him and rendered his efforts null.
Then you've got the game a few weeks ago, can't remember who against, where he was much more involved and looked a lot more like his old self but repeatedly made horrendous decisions when on the ball and squandered several opportunities as a result. I've never been a massive Dicko fan personally, but he did generally seem to have pretty decent instinct in front of goal before whereas as in that game he didn't look anything like sure of himself, perhaps it's a lack of confidence following the time out that's made him lose conviction in his decisions so that could well return with a few goals to take the pressure off.
I wonder if Lambo will see Zyro as a striker for next season?
I think Bod would be great in a two where A. Nother scores the lion share and he chips in with a few but mostly full of running, pulling defences about and leaving gaps. I'm not advocating changing systems to accommodate a single player but I think his role will eventually become that of Saturday, thrown on to protect a lead because when he's the focal point that pressure is too much.

You could argue Dicko used to do that role for Pre-Afobe. He scored a handful of goals in Aug-Jan 14/15 but that November and our inability to take chances in games such as Rotherham (a) are what ultimately cost us. I think Afobe arriving made him a better player because there wasn't as much pressure on Nouha to score so he was much calmer in finishing positions.
In fairness Dicko didn't play any of the games in November. It was because he wasn't playing that we were absolutely boned, having to use Leon/Sagbo/McAlinden/Danny Graham up there.

Leon trying to play that role was like watching Danny Dyer try to play Hamlet.
Dicko will come good, a player of his ability has to, he just needs a bit of luck and things will turn. He may be having to adapt his play a bit as well. He may get less ball in the channels to run onto from midfield. Whilst Costa is an absolute star, he's the type of player to get the ball down and then beat his man, meaning Dicko will need to get used to this, be patient for ball to arrive and adapt to suit.
Cav. Similarly to Costa, isn't a player to play an early ball into the channels. Not sure about Cav personally from what I've seen.

Bod is never going to be prolific imo, he's a target man, an alternative to Dicko and a handful for defenders though.
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I wonder if Lambo will see Zyro as a striker for next season?

I tried that on FIFA and he's not a natural finisher. Super fast, great ball control but finishing is weak.

Jordan Graham works as a forward though (on FIFA obviously)
Andy Mutch is a bit of a favourite on here (disproportionately so IMO), his record in his final three years here was:

1990/91: 29 apps, 8 goals
1991/92: 37 apps, 10 goals
1992/93: 39 apps, 9 goals

I think Bod could match that output eventually. Miles better player too.

As I said in Saturday's blog it's telling that though neither has scored for ages, no-one is really giving them huge amounts of stick, either at the match or on the forums.
A good question Prog, and one that I constantly ask myself.
If you look at our last 10 games we’ve scored 18 goals and taken 17 points. Project that over a season and you have 82 goals and 78 points. Burnley won the league last year with 72 goals and 78 points will put you comfortably in the play-offs. So on the one hand you could say the system is working and does it really matter who scores the goals for us? [And we’ve stuck two past Liverpool and Stoke as well…]
But then you have to say that 2/25 and 0/16 is simply not good enough. Whatever else they bring to the team a striker’s main job is to score and they’re not doing that. Right now I’d start Bod over Dicko (who to me doesn’t even look like scoring) and if someone offered £4m for ND I’d definitely take it. I’m not sure he’ll ever be the player he was. I don’t subscribe to the “just needs a bit of luck theory” and I’ll still have my doubts if he scores a hat-trick on Saturday…
I do like the 4231 system, and I wouldn’t want to change that. My personal preference is new striker, Bod as back up/impact and sell Dicko