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Premier League 2016-17

huskon4ever!

Scout Team
10 Year Member
1. Something bad is happening to the locker room at City. Barring some weird turnaround, Pep is going to have to overhaul that entire roster. The effort is ugly. He's got bad chemistry up there.

2. Is Diego hurt....................or wanting a new contract?

3. Payet is not hurt and wants a new contract. Meanwhile he's simply not going to play?

4. Mkhitaryan is the only player I like watching at ManU. The guy screws up all the time, but he's the only one who regularly can put himself in dangerous advanced positions in order to screw up in the first place. ManU is going to have to look at that roster without bias, because they have a bunch of players who are really average. By the way, that was the best half of football I've seen from Rooney in awhile.

5. Chelsea up 7 on Tottenham and Liverpool; and 8 on Arsenal. Listen, I like how Liverpool plays. But they are winning in spite of their center backs. It's probably going to bite them before too much longer. They are also destined to lose a game due to Mignolet's distribution at some point. Does he purposely put his team in bad positions in order to challenge himself? Lol. Tottenham, Arsenal and Chelsea are your title contenders. I think, if Pep can rid some of the cancer from his roster, City can challenge.
1. That was an ugly loss to Everton. Not feeling bad for City, and can't overreact after one bad loss, but depending on which way this goes, I could see them falling out of the Europa spot. The top 6 have definitely separated themselves and I don't think Everton has enough to make a run, ManU isn't far out.

2. Yes. Some crazy, crazy reports coming out, with many saying even if he gets a new contract, he'll still leave in the summer... over one little dust up? Unless he really is going to get 30M from China, I can't see him leaving.

3. He's a joke.

4. Mou just doesn't seem to know how to use the young pups... last year it looked like Martial and Rashford we're the IT thing, this year its crickets more or less from each. If they're not careful, Rooney is going to catch them in goals...

5. If they don't get the Wenger situation figured out, I'm not sure Arsenal will contend all season. I could see them mailing it in. I think its between Tot and Chelsea honestly and unless Tot reinforces a little here in this transfer window, I think it'll be a similar result to last year.
 

jikastew

All Legend
10 Year Member
Chelsea - Arsenal.

Man, how things have changed since September. THAT was what I think of when I think of Arsenal minus some prettier passing. Chelsea just gave them possession. Conte knows that outside of Alexis, they can't generate goals against a disciplined defense. Same ole, same ole from Arsenal. Chelsea sat deep and countered at every opportunity against some stale Arsenal defending. Could have been worse all around. Both teams squandered some great opportunities, but Chelsea probably should have put 2 more on the board.

As opposed to American football where I generally don't believe change is a good thing................I believe it to be essential in Europe. The difference between winning and losing is so minute in the EPL, you have to constantly create a culture of competition. Most players need to be challenged by roster movement in order to continue the level of play needed. (That's my opinion, of course) So it's a fine line between keeping the core of the team intact while adding fresh blood to push the roster. Arsenal is facing a crossroads. Hell, they were there 2 years ago. They HAVE to do something. First off, they need an aggressive target man. Giroud is a flake. Secondly, they need midfielders/forwards who can make runs. Is it Wenger's philosophy to work so hard 25 yards from goal? They'll string together an ultra-impressive string of passes and it gets them to the 18 with nothing to show for it. A defense needs to keep its shape and usually that's enough to hold them off.....unless Alexis does something Alexis-like (which he didn't do today).
 
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Chi-Town Cube

Riding the pine
5 Year Member
Chelsea - Arsenal.

Man, how things have changed since September. THAT was what I think of when I think of Arsenal minus some prettier passing. Chelsea just gave them possession. Conte knows that outside of Alexis, they can't generate goals against a disciplined defense. Same ole, same ole from Arsenal. Chelsea sat deep and countered at every opportunity against some stale Arsenal defending. Could have been worse all around. Both teams squandered some great opportunities, but Chelsea probably should have put 2 more on the board.

As opposed to American football where I generally don't believe change is a good thing................I believe it to be essential in Europe. The difference between winning and losing is so minute in the EPL, you have to constantly create a culture of competition. Most players need to be challenged by roster movement in order to continue the level of play needed. (That's my opinion, of course) So it's a fine line between keeping the core of the team intact while adding fresh blood to push the roster. Arsenal is facing a crossroads. Hell, they were there 2 years ago. They HAVE to do something. First off, they need an aggressive target man. Giroud is a flake. Secondly, they need midfielders/forwards who can make runs. Is it Wenger's philosophy to work so hard 25 yards from goal? They'll string together an ultra-impressive string of passes and it gets them to the 18 with nothing to show for it. A defense needs to keep its shape and usually that's enough to hold them off.....unless Alexis does something Alexis-like (which he didn't do today).
Preach on. Every match is the same (except against Bayern Munich which was a gangland style beat down). Arsenal commands possession, passes the ball all around the box, generate few quality scoring chances, and then turn the ball over and get countered to death.

It's a broken record.

The only question left this EPL season is does Leicester get relegated. That would be awesome.
 

jikastew

All Legend
10 Year Member
The only question left this EPL season is does Leicester get relegated. That would be awesome.
Part of me wants to think it would serve them right for not trying to upgrade. Hell, maybe not even upgrade. They let Kante go for 29M. Just think about that for a second. They f'in sold Kante for 29M. If I wasn't a Chelsea fan, that would infuriate me to no end and I'm not even a Leicester fan.

But, I'd like to wish them good-will because, well, I am a Chelsea fan. And that transfer fee will go down as one of the greatest bargains of the last decade. Here's hoping we can fleece them in the future as well.
 

jikastew

All Legend
10 Year Member
Fabregas.

Way to reinvent, rededicate yourself, my friend. I don't recognize the player we saw last year. Back to bossing midfield and controlling the attack. Chelsea is scary when he is on top his game. Here's hoping he can keep this up for another year. Damn, he's fun to watch when he's playing like this.

Here's the comparison I like to make when comparing this year to last. Willian, clearly our best player from one year ago, currently, cannot get on the field with regularity. That's how much everyone else has progressed/improved/rededicated.
 

Red Reign

Husker Immortal
10 Year Member
United 22 straight games without a loss...12 wins and 10 ties making a push for a Champions League spot....Chelsea have lost two of the last four

United 2 Chelsea 0 today. :)

United with seven games left have a real shot at it.

Spurs now just four points shy of Chelsea at the top....
 

jikastew

All Legend
10 Year Member
Mou starts in on blaming fans for a poor environment today. It's all starting again for this guy. We've seen this all before. We all know how this plays out.

ManU hasn't scored more than 2 goals in a game since February. His teams, in the second halves of seasons, have a history of being incredibly boring to watch. When he wins, it's tolerable. When it starts going downhill, the natives make excuses for him. After awhile of it, they turn. And they turn fast. Dude starts blaming everyone but himself. Starts throwing players under the bus. Blames the crowd for his players' energy level. Refuses to play subs and burns out his regulars even more. Then the regulars won't play hard for him. Once everyone, including management, becomes embarrassed by his antics, he's gone. ManU can hope he either has an epiphany regarding his coaching (with his ego, zero chance) or replaces a good amount of the roster yearly to reset his players' resentment toward him.

With that said, let's get to some important stuff.

Chelsea played an entire half today in zombie mode. In my earlier life, I would have questioned how that is possible with the league on the line. But, it's amazing how these things just happen. Take Barca, for example. Same thing from them this weekend. They are down only a tie-breaker with Real, wins are mandatory, and they zombied it for a half as well. Anymore, I can see it from the opening whistle. With Barca, if they are struggling to get the ball out of their half, they will need to weather a storm until the 2nd half rolls around, or the other team does something stupid and gifts them a goal. Once that happens, the opponent needs to push for an equalizer, and it wakes up Barca's offensive instincts and they snap out of it. With Chelsea, one only needs to watch how they attack 50/50 balls. You can tell within 5 minutes how that first half is going to go. Today was no different. They slept through the first half. By all indications, both teams were ready to ball and came out flat. It happens. Even at this level.
 

jikastew

All Legend
10 Year Member
By the way, Mou showed the league how you play Chelsea. Man up Hazard and hope you have the midfield horses to generate an attack without that player. Everton didn't have the horses. ManU did. Tot played them straight up and got beat down in the FA. I think lesser teams can do it successfully if their manager has the nuts to substitute early in order to control midfield. And then hope Fabregas isn't in the game to negate it.

I'll be honest, I think Fabs was the key to Chelsea's second half. How many games did he revive a sterile Chelsea attack, and how many times did he come in to finish off the game playing keep away in midfield? He officially hit old-Pirlo status this year where his team realized the effort to cover for him is well spent. And they play better for it. He reinvented himself this year. And Conte allowed him to do it, essentially playing a 3-4-1-2 when he's in, giving him and Hazard both something similar to the #10 role. Somehow it works. They play off it very well and rarely both get caught out of position. That's coaching.
 

jikastew

All Legend
10 Year Member
Jose getting throttled for saying M. Oliver saved his team by having to play a man down in the FA quarters and causing the loss.

Problem is, I agree with Jose.

I feel dirty.

The man really doesn't have a filter. But it doesn't mean he's wrong. Of course, if he would have bought Kante for 29M and added another 70M worth of players rather than Pogba, his depth issues wouldn't be as big of deal. ManU has an Arsenal problem. They have a bunch of darn good players but few world-class players. It's tough to justify letting a dude like Ander-Herrera go because he's actually pretty good. But he's not propelling ManU further in the league or Europe. If your going to keep quality rather than go for world-class, then I'd favor guys like Fellaini who has a definite carved-out role and excels in what he does, though limited. Same with Blind. Of course, they'd have more financial freedom to lure Griez if they off-loaded 250000/week from their Rooney contract.

By the way, if ManU wants to send Blind-a-packing, that's one guy I'd love to see in Blue. Really like his game. He'd excel in London.
 
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jikastew

All Legend
10 Year Member
Hey RR, is ManU going to play Gomes this weekend? I'm excited to see him in action. If they wanted some end-of-the-year excitement......this is a good way to do it. Playing CP; nothing on the line. Seems like fun for everyone.
 

Red Reign

Husker Immortal
10 Year Member
Hey RR, is ManU going to play Gomes this weekend? I'm excited to see him in action. If they wanted some end-of-the-year excitement......this is a good way to do it. Playing CP; nothing on the line. Seems like fun for everyone.
Europa League Final is Wedensday (United vs Ajax) so they still have a lot to play for as a win will put them in the Champions League. So as to who they play or do not play today remains to be seen as the EL Final will play into that determination.
 

Red Reign

Husker Immortal
10 Year Member
Looks like United is youth heavy today and leads 2-0 early against Palace. Makes sense with the EU Final on Wednesday and nothing on the line in the EPL.
 
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