View Poll Results: Who will win the Premier League this season?

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  • Chelsea

    2 20.00%
  • Tottenham

    0 0%
  • Man City

    2 20.00%
  • Liverpool

    2 20.00%
  • Arsenal

    0 0%
  • Man Utd

    2 20.00%
  • Brighton

    2 20.00%
  • Someone else

    0 0%
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Thread: 2017-18 English Football Season Thread

  1. #226

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    Though I am getting way ahead of myself, I relish the thought of possibly playing Barcelona later on in this tournament and having Coutinho see what he left behind. Even better, he'd have to watch from the bench since he's cup-tied (I'm still so confused about why he forced the move when he did).

    Robertson especially has been such a great addition. He gets forward as much as Moreno did but can actually put in a real good cross and tracks back to defend without lunging in all the time. If the defense especially can play this solid, the club's future is extremely bright.

    Where will Naby Keita fit into all of this, I wonder? In my dreams, Can re-signs and then we play a midfield three of Can, Keita and a rotation of Gigi/Lallana/Hendo/Milner with the Ox spelling the big boys upfront.

    Take care all.

  2. #227
    Newbie Administrator Loony BoB's Avatar
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    Loony Bob (Sargatanas)

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Captain View Post
    Though I am getting way ahead of myself, I relish the thought of possibly playing Barcelona later on in this tournament and having Coutinho see what he left behind.
    That's like saying Sergio Aguero would be looking back at Athletico Madrid and seeing what he left behind. With all due respect to Liverpool, Barcelona are flying as high in their league as Manchester City are in ours. I'm sure Suarez isn't exactly missing his Liverpool life either. xD Hell, as much as it pains me, I doubt Ronaldo misses Manchester United to the point that he has any regrets about leaving us.

    Even better, he'd have to watch from the bench since he's cup-tied (I'm still so confused about why he forced the move when he did).
    From the stands, if he's cup tied.

    I'm really not sure why some people are so caught up with the cup tied thing, these players are moving for more than half a season. Players move when cup tied all the time, it's really nothing new. We got Vidic and Evra mid-season. I can't remember if they were cup tied but it wouldn't have mattered - they were both rubbish their first half season. After that? Legends. You pick the club for the future season, not the first one, unless you're 33 or something.

    Liverpool are doing excellent things right now and I'm envious of their attacking nature, but Liverpool aren't on Barcelona's level right now.
    Bow before the mighty Javoo!

  3. #228
    Yossarian Lives Administrator Psychotic's Avatar
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    It made sense for all parties. Liverpool wanted Coutinho to stay 'til the end of the season and apparently played the cup-tied card with him, but Barca basically said it was now or never and so put pressure on him to agitate for a move then. I guess from Coutinho's point of view you have the World Cup coming up this summer and you have no idea who the next shiny thing (in other words the next James and Kroos!) that the big Spanish clubs will want to sign up will be.

    From Barca's point of view they lost a hell of a lot of face with the Neymar debacle and so Dembele and Coutinho are statement signings to prove they still have it.

    And for LFC, the choice to keep or sell was apparently given to Klopp and as you saw with him at Dortmund, he'd rather have committed players. Coutinho never really fitted into Klopp's preferred system from a positional sense, but he was such a world class game changer that the square peg had to be crammed in there somehow. Without him you see games like Man City and Porto where Liverpool are playing more efficiently with more hard workers in midfield. Klopp has also been experimenting with new formations with Coutinho gone too, we'll now regularly switch to three at the back if we're holding onto a lead. That's not to say he's not a loss - after all, he was worth disrupting the system for - but losing Firmino would be twice as bad as losing Coutinho.

  4. #229

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    I would agree Bobby Firmino is much more vital to what we're doing in attack. Coutinho was the wild card that could be used to unlock teams that parked the bus against us when our speed was somewhat neutralized.

    I read a very interesting theory about why Champions League is better suited for our game than even the EPL: Essentially it boils down to the mindset of teams. In the CL, you have mostly top tier and league winners involved, teams that play their own attacking style and aren't used to grinding out draws to avoid being relegated. They are used to scoring goals and thus, play wide open and attacking at us, which as everyone knows, is exactly what Liverpool want. In the EPL though, you have teams that are happy to scrap for draws and play 10 men behind the ball if it means getting that vital point to stay in the league. Just food for thought.

    As to the cup-tied aspect, I take this view on things: nothing in life is guaranteed. Yes of course Barcelona is the bigger club but really, that can all change if there are long term injuries or contract/personality disputes that crop up. Really the team is built around Messi. If he were to ever leave, I would be curious if Coutinho really wanted to stay there. Thus, let's say Coutinho gets a long term injury, what if he doesn't get to play in Champions League for YEARS now or even the World Cup? I think you need to grab every chance to play NOW, not think about next year.

    Sure, teams can bluster about "moving on" but Barcelona have the same ego every other team has and they'd come back again and again simply because a team or player dared to stare them down. They wouldn't want to lose their status as the team players ALWAYS go to.

    The James Rodriguez misfire at Real is a sign that not all good things happen just because you go to the biggest club. He could never break into the team and eventually had to leave, granted to another giant, to really make his mark. Pogba right now looks miserable playing at Man United too, though that can come a lot down to the system Jose plays as well.

    What has always rubbed me the wrong way with soccer is that the contracts are essentially dust. Players sign 5 year deals and are itching for a move away 6 months later. It happens all the time but is a very unique thing to this sport. In most other sports, it's only when a player is at approaching the end of their deal do they really become a big trade piece. Otherwise, they are seen as a building block for the team, not as the next potential big sale.

    Take care all.

  5. #230
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Captain View Post
    As to the cup-tied aspect, I take this view on things: nothing in life is guaranteed. Yes of course Barcelona is the bigger club but really, that can all change if there are long term injuries or contract/personality disputes that crop up. Really the team is built around Messi. If he were to ever leave, I would be curious if Coutinho really wanted to stay there. Thus, let's say Coutinho gets a long term injury, what if he doesn't get to play in Champions League for YEARS now or even the World Cup? I think you need to grab every chance to play NOW, not think about next year.
    By that argument, surely nobody should ever attempt to join a better team, ever? You can live your life thinking "oh but it might go wrong" and become one of history's what-ifs, or you can take the leap. Sorry Cap, I usually really like your viewpoints and thoughts on these things but on this one I just can't get my head around your way of thinking. xD If a footballer would prefer to play elsewhere, it's completely right for him to chase that dream. Football is their business, not their hobby. The odds of a footballer suffering some kind of career ending injury are massively slim.

    Like it or not, Barcelona is a natural step up for Coutinho's career. Now he's probably earning more, playing with better players and has a massively increased chance of actually winning things. There is no downside I can think of for him. I dare say career ending injuries are more likely to occur in the PL than La Liga, anyway!
    Bow before the mighty Javoo!

  6. #231

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    I'm all for players being able to move, but I am also for them honoring their contracts. Otherwise, what's the point of having them at all?

    We already are on the hairy edge of having literally 5 or 6 teams just buy up all the talent in the world, which as anyone that's an NBA fan can tell you, makes for a very dull championship.

    Either just have every player be a free agent after every season and negotiate one year deals or at the very least, make it against the rules for a player who just signed a new contract to leave in the winter window.

    Take care all.

  7. #232
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Captain View Post
    I'm all for players being able to move, but I am also for them honoring their contracts. Otherwise, what's the point of having them at all?
    It's the system we have at present - and the selling clubs have every right to say "no, we won't sell you" like Leicester did. It's just a case of having a player who doesn't want to be there vs. having a crapload of money. No club wants to release a player on a free - the assumption is always that they'll either extend the contract or they'll sell them with 1-2 years left on the contract. This is just the way of things right now, whether we like it or not. But yeah, if a club wants to force a player to stay they have that right. Few exercise that right though.

    We already are on the hairy edge of having literally 5 or 6 teams just buy up all the talent in the world, which as anyone that's an NBA fan can tell you, makes for a very dull championship.

    Either just have every player be a free agent after every season and negotiate one year deals or at the very least, make it against the rules for a player who just signed a new contract to leave in the winter window.

    Take care all.
    I agree that having 5-6 clubs buy the lot isn't great. Not sure if that suggested system is any better. Tough to say.

    I think I'd be pretty happy with a system where you are only allowed to move in the mid-season windows if it's to a club that has the opposite season schedule (ie, break in mid-year vs. break in end/start of year). But then again, I think it helps keep the league competitive as if a club is way ahead, the other teams can strengthen. Hard to really say what's the best way. I guess no matter what we go for, there's always gonna be something screwy.
    Bow before the mighty Javoo!

  8. #233
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    Sevilla tactics seem to be to tun into our players shoulder first and jam their legs into the backs of our player's legs. No yellows yet though - I thought the PL was supposed to be the dirty hard tackling league!?

    Still got their comical drops to the ground when the likes of Mata of all people touch them
    Bow before the mighty Javoo!

  9. #234
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psychotic View Post
    3 games against these arseholes and it goes exactly the same way. Learn your smurfing lesson and go full Mourinho or Allardyce in the second half. And look, you know they're going to start flopping over if someone so much as sneezes in their general direction. So why the smurf are you still leaving your foot in and why the smurf are you doing it in the box? Infuriating!
    Well, you can't say I didn't warn you they'd do this. smurf Sevilla.

  10. #235
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    I still really dislike Sevilla but I can't really sympathise with United given that's the exact same thing they just did to us. I wish we'd be more streetwise and play like Sevilla and Saturday's United sometimes though. Early prediction: We get Sevilla in the next round, don't learn from our mistakes and lose.

    I still don't understand why they signed Sanchez other than to say a massive smurf you to City - and I don't know why City wanted him either for that matter - but, uh, Torres 2.0 anyone? Does he even deserve to be in the team ahead of one of Lingard, Rashford and Martial?

  11. #236
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    Well well remember this time last week when everyone was talking about 5 English teams in the last 8 and a return to PL domination?

  12. #237
    Yossarian Lives Administrator Psychotic's Avatar
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    I'm feeling pretty smug at work because I said only Liverpool and City would qualify despite other football liking colleagues saying all 5 would make it. Yes, I am that one annoying bloke. ...as if you all didn't already know that.

  13. #238
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    Loony Bob (Sargatanas)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Psychotic View Post
    I still don't understand why they signed Sanchez other than to say a massive smurf you to City - and I don't know why City wanted him either for that matter - but, uh, Torres 2.0 anyone? Does he even deserve to be in the team ahead of one of Lingard, Rashford and Martial?
    Personal opinion: We shouldn't have signed him, he unbalanced the team. Yes, he is probably better than perhaps all three of the other mentioned players on his day, but he hasn't had his day once since we signed him. I'm honestly at the point that I just wouldn't mourn Mourinho going at this stage, not because of the signings but because he can't get our team to attack in any effective way. The players don't look like they care. You could say that's on them, and it is to some extent, but honestly the players we have... they have all proven themselves capable and highly effective. It seems the manager simply doesn't know how to piece them together.

    Why don't United ever press anymore? Why no one-two passes?
    Bow before the mighty Javoo!

  14. #239
    Yossarian Lives Administrator Psychotic's Avatar
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    Okay so on the one hand I'd have preferred to play an actual foreign team but on the other, Liverpool v City is the best fixture in the Premier League and has been for the past five years. Champions League tie under the floodlights, away goals and everything to play for? Strap yourselves in, you're going to see something insane. Either 6-0 to City on aggregate or 6-5 on aggregate to Liverpool.

  15. #240
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    Bloody hell Mo Salah is broken. It's honestly like watching Messi (watch his first or third goals) as he tricks and hoodwinks defenders. It's insane.

    ...and he's going to be playing in Spain next year isn't he

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