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Petriix last won the day on January 13

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  1. If that's still the case at the end of the season then I'll create a thread called 'Smithball: the impossible dream made real' and don a Dean Smith mask for our first home game in the Premier League next season.
  2. Or, more short term, recognising that we don't have a fit DM and therefore stop trying to play a single pivot; which is beyond the skill set of any of our currently available midfielders. Sharing the job between two of them would cover a multitude of sins and completely unleash the third midfielder to attack. I vaguely remember the previous manager going through a long process of trying different midfield options before arriving at a double pivot. This seemed to coincide with significant success on the pitch, at least at Championship level. It's a shame we have to go through the same mistakes all over again...
  3. It really depends on how serious the crime. Setting up a cannabis farm in the City stand under the new floodlights should just be a slap on the wrist; but holding up a blank piece of paper or getting the words to the national anthem wrong should be a lifetime ban.
  4. Let's be honest. West Brom were athletic and organised - as you would expect - without any real weapons. They had a very limited game plan which they executed well, but you can see exactly why they haven't been winning. You can argue that they contained us (and particularly Pukki) well. But I'd counter that we nullified ourselves by dropping Cantwell and reverting to the 4-3-3. It's very hard to break down teams who are happy to stick everyone behind the ball. That's why you need creativity and movement. The most significant factor (which people are ignoring) is that this kind of fixture represents just about the easiest games in the Premier League. If we go up then West Brom at home would be one of the 'must wins' required for survival. As a measure of progress it shows that we aren't close to closing that gap. Yes, it's still (relatively) early in the season. We've got injuries and players just getting up to speed. But other teams aren't going to stand still while we get better. West Brom are hardly firing on all cylinders. I'm OK with a draw, but I want to see a semblance of a game plan for how we intend to win this kind of match.
  5. Offside could easily be measured in real-time by a computer tracking all the players. Introducing low resolution visual cameras into the equation only muddies the outcome. There should still be a tolerance of at least 10cm in favour of the attacker to avoid those millimetre decisions, but it shouldn't be someone drawing lines on the screen.
  6. Exactly this. People should talk about whatever they want to. If you disagree then share your reasoning. If you're not interested then scroll on past. I don't personally think Dean Smith is doing a terrible job. He's done just about as well as possible after those first three games, in terms of points at least. If he keeps up this points ratio against the better teams in the Championship then it will be a very good job indeed. I will always consider it a mistake sacking Farke. Until, at least, Dean Smith surpasses Farke's success. But it's more about the overall change for me. As far as I'm concerned, the issues with Farkeball had been resolved by the time of our promotion. Selling Buendia, not replacing Skipp and switching to the 4-3-3 were the biggest mistakes. Maybe I'm in denial for blaming these things on Webber. While Farke was still here, at least there was the possibility of undoing the damage; albeit too late to survive last season but ready to go again this year. By sacking Farke, the changes were cemented. Dean Smith briefly got my hopes up by bringing Cantwell back in and switching back to the 4-2-3-1. My consternation with the West Brom game was far more about the team selection and the awful 4-3-3 than the unsurprisingly bad performance which resulted. Ultimately some of us need a bit more time to move on from Farke. Lambert helped us to move on quickly by being such a classless reprobate. But Farke won't make it so easy. It's a two way thing. Farke clearly cared about the club and the fans. Dean Smith looks like a bloke doing a job. Farke had a vision which he used to get the best out of the players we had. Dean Smith seems intent on shoehorning our players into a flawed system that negates their strengths. I gave it 10 games and arrived at 'meh'. Who knows. If we're top 2 still at Christmas then maybe that will improve to something a bit more positive.
  7. I'm not 100% sure of the accuracy, but this has us top of the xg table (select 20/21).
  8. Things like pass accuracy, shots per game. You name it...
  9. Look @chicken there's nothing 'entitled' about my views. I don't subscribe to the idea that we're automatically supposed to be able to compete in the Premier League. I don't expect us to walk the Championship either. I'm well aware of the current state of transition and, even though I can't quite see what the plan is, I know that players need time to gel. But my overriding point is that all the changes have done is take us backwards. Ever since promotion was secured, all we've done is regress. We have different views about who instigated that change but I think we'd both have preferred us to continue the same system on promotion rather than changing the system and signing the players we did last summer. In a parallel universe where we got the recruitment right, I'm convinced that Farke could have been more competitive. That might not have meant survival, but only the 'entitled' would expect that. I just think it was madness to rip it all up. And sacking Farke was the act that cemented the madness. So, while it's totally fair to point out that Smith is doing OK and needs a bit of patience while it comes together, I'm always going to be left thinking 'why?'. Why should we have to watch the team reinvent itself when we already had a decent system? And any reinvention is always going to be compared to the previous success. What we needed was incremental improvement. We don't have the money to replace or upgrade players like Pukki and Cantwell so we have to build around them. Playing a 4-3-3 negates both. Pukki has only ever been successful playing with another striker or a number 10. Cantwell has never fitted into this new system. There's a real danger that we'll lose both on free transfers at the end of the season. And then what? Do we copy Forest and sign a whole new squad? So you'll have to forgive me for struggling to warm to Dean Smith. Unless (and until) he gives us something to get behind, he's always going to be met with apathy. As long as he persists with a single pivot I'm always going to be anxious about the massive hole in the midfield; especially as it took Farke so long to fix that particular issue.
  10. There is so much drivel in this it's hard to know where to start. I've provided some reasonable analysis which you've ignored. Instead you deliberately misrepresent my views to make them look ridiculous so that you can dismiss what I say. There is a very real apathy and disconnection between the team, the management and the fans. Some of us are interested in having a grown-up conversation about it. I was always holding fire until 10 games into the season before posting that thread. I also started a thread when we played well and beat Coventry. I'd say I was generally more positive than most about the Bristol City game. But I struggle with the repeated attempts to play 4-3-3. I can't fathom why Cantwell was dropped. I despair every time I see McLean as our single DM. But, whatever. My opinion doesn't fit your narrative so there's little point in trying to engage in a debate. So maybe you should just ignore my posts rather than being antagonistic.
  11. That's a fantastic and intelligent counter-argument you've put forward there.
  12. I'm pretty certain that the change in system as well as the accompanying recruitment were driven by the director of football.
  13. I don't buy this 'Farke didn't adapt' narrative. Farke did adapt, and it all fell apart. I will always maintain that we were far better equipped to stay up (before the awful transfer window) on the second attempt; if only Farke had stuck to his successful formula. We were better than Brentford by every metric. They are now reasonably competitive in the Premier League. Changing the system was madness, so was sacking Farke.
  14. People seem to be under the misguided notion that the ref stops his watch when there is time wasting. That's only true if a player is actually booked.
  15. I never said we should sack him. That would be bonkers at this point. I just don't think we've gained anything by sacking Farke and appointing him.
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