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Spiritof62

Modern Managers

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Do they try to be too clever and employ over complicated formations and tactics.

For the life of me I can't understand the way Hartley sends his team out to play, of course we all want to see passing football, as long as a good percentage is in the opposition half.

Last night we spent so much time passing the ball around our back 5, by the time we made a forward pass Dunfermline had parked the bus.

By contrast as soon as the Dunfermline guys got possession they were off directly running at our defenders who looked panicky and all over the place.

Our style is so easy to counteract every manager has the measure of us, attack us directly with pace and we are in big trouble.

Something has to change.

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Yes.

When mcpake dragged shot wide after aboot half n hour it was the first time a Dundee player had went past anybody in the middle of the park.

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Dunfermline probably couldn't believe their luck last night. An SPL side that pitches up happy to play the ball about amongst 3 CHs for 90 minutes with no tempo and no width to worry about and with one of the opposition's most creative players 50 yards back from his strikers.

Bet Peterhead didn't do that.

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Yes, they think too much. I'm in favour of the long ball on occasions, might catch opponents out if they're not expecting it for a start

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Ive said for long enough PH is trying to be too clever.

You dont have to be overcomplecated in scotland tactically imo

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At Spurs, Harry Redknapp took the team to their only top four finishes this century and also the quarter-finals of the Champions League. His philosophy was to keep the game as simple as possible. Sign talented players, make them feel good about themselves and ask them to perform. They usually did.

Redknapp was replaced by Andre Villas-Boas, a great student of the game who spent countless hours coming up with a complex strategy to set up his team. The players didn't respond, AVB refused to change and he was sacked after some crushing defeats to teams like Liverpool and Man City who sussed them out.

I think the lesson is that players often like to keep the game simple and over-complicating things can backfire.

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At Spurs, Harry Redknapp took the team to their only top four finishes this century and also the quarter-finals of the Champions League. His philosophy was to keep the game as simple as possible. Sign talented players, make them feel good about themselves and ask them to perform. They usually did.

Redknapp was replaced by Andre Villas-Boas, a great student of the game who spent countless hours coming up with a complex strategy to set up his team. The players didn't respond, AVB refused to change and he was sacked after some crushing defeats to teams like Liverpool and Man City who sussed them out.

I think the lesson is that players often like to keep the game simple and over-complicating things can backfire.

Great example / great post Cobra.

PH is def in the AVB mold

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You know, there's nothing wrong with passing the ball around the back and probing for an openings. The stats last night claim we had 20 chances, so we must have created something through that mantra.

However the classic Italian sides of the past, who would pass with no apparent purpose for hours, still had the ability to suddenly up the pace, create space through great movement and pass the ball at speed into dangerous areas.

Where we seem to find ourselves without Loy, Low and Thomson is we have the passing, but not the movement or ability to create space, or move the ball quickly. 

That's why (going back to the easy to be a critic thread), we find ourselves praising displays like that at Killie, the first half against Hearts and slating last night and the weekend.

The best system is the one which suits the 11 on the park and when Hartley has all his players fit and available, his preferred system and style fits them well. However take a few components out (and in Thomo, Low and Loy, key components at that) and we need to do more in the way of moving the ball front to back more quickly. However with Hemmings and Stewart up front, they will never hold on to the ball, or win much in the air, so we don't that option, which would suggest we should get the ball out wide and whipped into the box. However with Roberts being, in football terms, garbage and a waster and no other wide option, we can't do that either.

Hence, if we can't pass our way through a team, then we have little other option (the two defeats to StJ at the end of last season being prime examples) than to keep doing the same, before chucking the only player with any presence in the whole squad (McPake) up top and hoping for some heroics (the dump for example!  :D not East End Park  :o where we lost the shape of the team completely.).

I know it is the "Scottish way", but if we added a big, mobile lad who could come off the bench, along with a player capable of playing wide, beating a man and (shock horror) crossing it into good areas, then we could lose the likes of Loy, Low and Thomson and not look as lost as we did for much of last night, or the second half against Hearts or StJ.

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We've already found our most effective system IMO..

It ripped Killie, Hearts and United to shreds.

The reason we fell away in the second half against Hearts and United was not solely a failure to change system.

It was in large part due to us not reacting mentally to the inevitable onslaught at the start of the second half in those games and not coping defensively.

At times In those three games (and for the full game at Killie) we played some slick passing football using the full width of the park, created and took chances and looked effective all over the pitch.

Time to stop over complicating it and let the players play where they have the biggest impact.

Stewart playing behind Loy and Hemmings with GGH having the freedom to get forward infront of KT are the key areas that will get us goals IMO.

It's keeping them out at the other end that I think we need to work on..

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I do agree Boba. However when a side, as Hearts did, up their work rate, get in your face and decide to play rough house, passing through the middle of the park isn't always the best option. Also, we know we are not going to have all our players fit every game, so if there isn't a ready made replacement, a different is approach isn't a nice thing to have, it is a necessity. I don't care about Christmas trees, diamonds, or whatever other shyte they call it now, I do care that we are capable of not just playing the same way week in week out - unless it is ensuring success of course, which it isn't always. 

Having an out ball of a wide man who can stretch a team, or keep their wide midfielders busy at the wrong end of the park. Or/And a target up front which can, even for a short time, while you weather the storm, cut out the middle of the park where you're losing the battle would allow us to regroup without losing the battle for 10 minutes (the dump for example).

It's not a case of over complicating things. Far from it. However good (not great) teams/managers/players can adapt during games to two or three styles which can turn a game. I mean Aberdeen, ICT last season, Hearts are all capable of it.

Hearts did it against us, by changing shape in the midfield and altering their style and it worked. Call it over complicating it if you want, but I'd prefer to call it effective. 

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We've already found our most effective system IMO..

It ripped Killie, Hearts and United to shreds.

The reason we fell away in the second half against Hearts and United was not solely a failure to change system.

It was in large part due to us not reacting mentally to the inevitable onslaught at the start of the second half in those games and not coping defensively.

At times In those three games (and for the full game at Killie) we played some slick passing football using the full width of the park, created and took chances and looked effective all over the pitch.

Time to stop over complicating it and let the players play where they have the biggest impact.

Stewart playing behind Loy and Hemmings with GGH having the freedom to get forward infront of KT are the key areas that will get us goals IMO.

It's keeping them out at the other end that I think we need to work on..

Top post Boba.  A gem in a sea of repetition.

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Top post Boba.  A gem in a sea of repetition.

It is a top post.

Does it deal with what we do when Thomson and Loy aren't playing though?

No really...

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I do agree Boba. However when a side, as Hearts did, up their work rate, get in your face and decide to play rough house, passing through the middle of the park isn't always the best option. Also, we know we are not going to have all our players fit every game, so if there isn't a ready made replacement, a different is approach isn't a nice thing to have, it is a necessity. I don't care about Christmas trees, diamonds, or whatever other S***e they call it now, I do care that we are capable of not just playing the same way week in week out - unless it is ensuring success of course, which it isn't always. 

Having an out ball of a wide man who can stretch a team, or keep their wide midfielders busy at the wrong end of the park. Or/And a target up front which can, even for a short time, while you weather the storm, cut out the middle of the park where you're losing the battle would allow us to regroup without losing the battle for 10 minutes (the dump for example).

It's not a case of over complicating things. Far from it. However good (not great) teams/managers/players can adapt during games to two or three styles which can turn a game. I mean Aberdeen, ICT last season, Hearts are all capable of it.

Hearts did it against us, by changing shape in the midfield and altering their style and it worked. Call it over complicating it if you want, but I'd prefer to call it effective.

Totally accept that we need to be adaptable and have the ability to change systems to see out games or react to situations..

My main point is we should be focusing on what works for us first and foremost. We know what we're good at so let's play to our strengths instead of trying to second guess what the opposition are going to do.

Last night and Saturday are good examples of what happens when it goes wrong (one more so than the other to be fair)

I am as frustrated as the next Dee when we retract into ourselves and start the tippy tappy stuff through the middle of the park with umpteen five yard passes but the truth is we don't always play that way.

In some games this season we've played loads of football out wide and stretched the opposition. In fact, three of our four goals on opening day came from out wide.

I think we're getting blinkered by the ineffective tippy tappy style when we're either low on confidence or asking the players to play in positions they don't fancy in a system they don't particularly understand. It seems that is our default setting when our backs are against the wall and that's what we need to focus on changing IMO.

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It is a top post.

Does it deal with what we do when Thomson and Loy aren't playing though?

No really...

The same could be said about any player mate..

What your describing is an injury crisis that we're currently experiencing and can't really legislate for in all honesty.

There are not many teams who can soak up injuries to half a dozen first team starters without being weakened significantly and we're no different.

KT doesn't play - Low moves into the middle with GGH deeper or Gowser.

Loy doesn't play - at present it would be Stewart up top with Hemmings and Carreiro behind them..

PH has found his best team shape IMO. He's now got the challenge of getting the balance within the squad right with less than a week of the transfer window left.

One things for sure - we can't afford any passengers (we currently have at least three)

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Totally accept that we need to be adaptable and have the ability to change systems to see out games or react to situations..

My main point is we should be focusing on what works for us first and foremost. We know what we're good at so let's play to our strengths instead of trying to second guess what the opposition are going to do.

Last night and Saturday are good examples of what happens when it goes wrong (one more so than the other to be fair)

I am as frustrated as the next Dee when we retract into ourselves and start the tippy tappy stuff through the middle of the park with umpteen five yard passes but the truth is we don't always play that way.

In some games this season we've played loads of football out wide and stretched the opposition. In fact, three of our four goals on opening day came from out wide.

I think we're getting blinkered by the ineffective tippy tappy style when we're either low on confidence or asking the players to play in positions they don't fancy in a system they don't particularly understand. It seems that is our default setting when our backs are against the wall and that's what we need to focus on changing IMO.

I think we're basically saying the same things Boba.

My point has been, that we all know (and I'm not moaning, just saying) that certain players are going to be missing for some games (or more than some) and expecting guys who aren't as good to step in and play the same way hasn't and won't work against good teams (and last night, not so good) who can counter the style we play.

Against Killie and Utd first half, Thomson ran the show and made others play well. He spread the ball and allowed Harkins time and room to move the ball about and create width. Low may also be able to do similar if needed (he looked great against StJ). However with neither available, McGown looks uncomfortable in that role and Harkins looks shackled by it.

Therefore having the personal to adapt the system surely has to be advisable?

Add to that, that Loy playing alongside Hemmings allows Stewart room to be free to drop deep, play wide, or through the middle and again, his absence has blunted what we are looking to achieve.

I'm not advocating we move away from a passing game, or change to five across the middle, or whatever. - with everyone available we fit PH's preferred system like a glove. However having so few options that we lump McPake into attack because we lack that sort of presence in the squad, shows that PH does want to have that type of flexibility, we just don't right now. 

Edited by barkblue

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We really need around 18 guys for different positions and skills that can step into the first 11.

At the moment 3 or 4 injuries leave us stretched to breaking point with an unbalanced mix.

Edited by Spiritof62

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The same could be said about any player mate..

What your describing is an injury crisis that we're currently experiencing and can't really legislate for in all honesty.

There are not many teams who can soak up injuries to half a dozen first team starters without being weakened significantly and we're no different.

KT doesn't play - Low moves into the middle with GGH deeper or Gowser.

Loy doesn't play - at present it would be Stewart up top with Hemmings and Carreiro behind them..

PH has found his best team shape IMO. He's now got the challenge of getting the balance within the squad right with less than a week of the transfer window left.

One things for sure - we can't afford any passengers (we currently have at least three)

I don't think it can. If McGinn or Holt go out injured, we bring in Irvine and play the same way. We have 3 CBs that allow us not to have to alter the system. 

However in front of that, we have a ton of options, but when Thomson is out we lack. Low looks to be the answer, but he's out too. Loy is key for me too. I don't think we are talking about half a dozen injured here, but take three out (they are also the three you've named) and we look a bit lost. Then and only then, should we feel the need to adapt our style. The sad thing is, that it seems without Thomson or Low we were left going five across the back.

None of Roberts, Tank or Ferry would be the answer anyway, so I'm simply not counting any of these "unavailable" players (none of these guys are injured, are they? They've all been on the bench in recent weeks and simply not got on unless they had to (Tank Vs StJ).

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I'm still hopeful that Low will come good and get a good run of games.

Way to early to be resigned to losing him as frequently as say KT..

Loy I'm not so sure about.. He has only just come back from a serious long term injury this pre season and as so often happens, he's picked another one up. Not sure if there are long term underlying issues with him or not (obviously crossing my fingers that there are none)

What I am certain of is that Hartley, McCabe, Ritchie and the medical staff need to be sitting down and carrying out a review of our training methods.

A full analysis of all regular exercises and training methods needs to take place.

Something that we're doing is exacerbating these fatigue type injuries. I'm convinced of it.

Edited by Boba Fett

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I do tend to agree regarding Low. He hasn't played that many games in recent seasons, so maybe once he gets a few under his belt he'll be able to put the injuries behind him.

Thomson on the other hand we are under no illusions about.

Totally agree with your assessment on Loy. However I don't think allowing him to play at the dump when he clearly wasn't fit has helped in the long run, hopefully it doesn't prove an ongoing issue because of it now. I think the boy could have a great season if he can get fit.

Fitness and training were meant to be among Hartley's strong points. He's maybe been incredibly unlucky, but with us now into our second season of this type of thing, it feels like a deeper issue.

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