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Everything posted by birchfest

  1. birchfest


    Hard to see Nketiah getting much game time if it looks like Drmic is back in training and Pukki should be available to play against Bournemouth. If lack of time was the reason for him coming back, we really aren't the place for him. In truth I'd rather see Idah given a go, as Im interested to see how our own youngsters can develop rather than a bigger club who will just have them back if they show promise.
  2. birchfest

    Match Thread v Brighton

    Stream anyone....
  3. birchfest

    "We were not physical enough" - Farke

    If we have Stieperman in the Number 10, Godfrey and Zimmerman at CB and Amadou in CDM we suddenly look a lot bigger without compromising the style or imagining players that we don't actually own. Injuries are playing a factor as by now, especially at places like Burnley away, Amadou would have been earmarked to start in the centre to act as a physical screen.
  4. birchfest

    Last nights consultation on membership

    Curious that the expansion idea has picked up a little momentum, but now in a very practical sense. I know its been spoken about almost since the day of the completion of the South Stand, but this appears to be the first actual step to get the ball rolling on this even if the next step might be some years down the line. I think perhaps the club have really looked at the success of the bond scheme, the demand for tickets including the up take in membership for this season and the models for self-sustainability and know that, for a club our size, we compete by having a strong academy and maximising our match day revenue.
  5. birchfest

    News from the farmyard

    I was curious to see what would happen when they eventually lost a game, they've had a good run and these sorts of results are inevitable in football, but if they want to get out of the league they need to start putting results together again, its a dog fight in that top 10. Whats likely though is, with similar players and the same manager to last season, that loosing feeling can start to set in and you'll see a slide. Personally I think they will make the play-offs, what they do with that is anyones guess and I couldn't give a monkeys if they go up... provided they don't win the league! That way we can have the bragging rights, they always mocked that achievement but its puts the pressure on that if they don't win the league on the first time of asking then they have once again found themselves second to our achievement. Perfect.
  6. I can't in memory think of a season where we have been this hit by the sheer volume of injuries. We've had key players out in seasons previously but never quite to this extent where 5-6 starters are out for a significant amount of time. However, I'm trying (like most of here) to keep an optimistic outlook and temper the temptation of jumping straight to panic. I really feel, even with our threadbare squad, that we have enough to keep the pace with the teams in and around us. Thats all we have to do right now, we arnt in the final run in where loosing players is truly catastrophic. Time and fixtures are still well on our side, and I think we can all agree that when we have our 'true' starting 11 on the pitch we have enough to push on and finish somewhere between 12th and 16th. The exemplary result against Man City perhaps allowed us to forget how Burnley and Palace are really tough away days, and ill be surprised to see many of the 'bottom 6 sides' go to either of those places and get more than a point. Watford and Newcastle don't have the injuries and look woeful, Southampton and Villa look unconvincing, Brighton could fall foul of the new manger bounce wearing off and Sheffield have a similar squad to ours in the sense a couple of key injuries could really impact their position. If we keep the pace with those lot and then in the next few weeks get Krul, Vrancic and Trybull back, and then see Zimmerman back into the fold in January plus any new additions we've still got a fantastic chance of comfortably staying up. 3 points on Saturday in front of a rocking Carrow Road and it'll be a big step towards that.
  7. birchfest


    Undervalued, especially as his hold up play allows Pukki to move ahead of him like the ball to Pukki that made the second in the Man City game. He's frustrating and wasteful at times though more thank capable of pulling off the assist creating pass, I also think we don't have anyone in the squad who can currently play that role in a more effective way.
  8. Well we just aren't going to get along if i carry on like that haha
  9. Yeah, thats exactly the point; we arnt currently adrift and we just have to make sure that before we get key players back that hasn't happened!
  10. I actually really fancy our chances in the next two; Villa will come to attack us as we will be viewed as a chance to pick up points on the road, the space will be there and we need a big performance we know our front 4 can produce. Man United.. we get at them and its another one where they could have a really uncomfortable afternoon!
  11. birchfest

    £906 million

    Thats on money spent, I have no doubt if they do that on players values we will be much higher with our crop of youngsters.
  12. The plight of RVW's time at Norwich has been fairly well documented, the combination of a injury hit start to the early part of his first season killed off any early momentum after scoring a great goal against Everton. The infamous Snoddy penalty incident also depriving our number 9 a chance to add to the tally. But what I think many can agree on is that our side under Hughton certainly wasn't geared up for the type of play and service that would have brought out the best in him. After last season and the real introduction of 'Farkeball' we now see a very different style and build up in attack. Moving into the top flight some of the chances and the Pukki goal on friday night show we can probably create similar opportunities, even against the big boys. It got me thinking; would he have hit his stride under Farke and become the player his reputation suggested? Or was he overrated and not cut out for the English game as others believe?
  13. Well in truth its half about him, but also half about if our style allows good players to become great players, or even at a stretch average players to become good players. Its also still a relatively recent example of (for the time) spending big in the hope of just buying quality, rather than developing or creating a system to bring out the best in a player. Id agree Pukki is the better player, we have the cold hard evidence, but at the time of his signing I doubt that many would have the opinion he would go on to be top scorer in the league. Just food for thought and perhaps a way of complimenting the current initiative shown by our scouts and coaches.
  14. birchfest

    Are we any stronger?

    I still think we might see another CB in, but perhaps not till January. In terms of strength, we've added serious competition to the Goal keeping position, whilst adding options up front as well as Roberts adding a rival to Hernandez. For me its competition for that DCM role, we have Tetty only on a year left and not likely to feature much as back up, there surely is a plan for someone to come in to push Trybull to start and be a back up.
  15. birchfest

    A couple of transfer rumours...

    I half wonder if the Club are held waiting to confirm Oliveira is off before they make concrete move for our version of a marque signing, no doubt if we get Bowen the money would be up there for our summer buys. Perhaps they need to get possibly one of our highest earners off the wage bill first? This is pure speculation motivated more by boredom than anything I know!
  16. birchfest

    Non-Football threads

    Id agree mid season, just when you stop an think about it, unless we have a transfer Saga playing out or we have actually started pre-season matched, there isn't really a whole lot to talk about that hasn't been gone over in the last month.
  17. So who do we think? As a rule of thumb its normally 1-2 of the teams that come up, with 1-2 struggling sides from the previous season taking up the 3 spots, but every few seasons or so you get the 'surprise' blow up of a slightly more established side. Could it happen this year? Just looking at some of the bigger clubs and various news articles about various issues got me thinking: Newcastle: The Benitez issue appears to have completely imploded their pre-season and fan base, doesn't seem to be much money being unlocked whilst they look to sell the club. West Ham: About to lose Arnautovic to China, they had that really poisonous season with the fans turning on the board, probably one of the most inconsistent sides in the sense they win games you expect them lose and have a nack to stay just ahead of the proper pressure cooker of the bottom 4 spots for most of the season. Palace: Could lose Zaha, already lost a good right back (won't be getting ours!), wasn't that long ago they were in a spot of bother and Roy managed to turn it around, just a feeling they could get off to a rocky start if the Zaha move does come to be. Everton: Always look just that little too good to do an 'Aston Villa' but last season seemed such a mixed bag of results, went on a horrible losing run last season. Bournemouth: Id sit them in a similar bracket to Everton and West ham where they seem to always be able to get the results they need but you just feel if they went on a sustained losing spell, could they handle the pressure? Id be tempted to put Leicester, Wolves and Villa into this bracket but they seem to have the resources to get to mid table and then id say there is a shoot out between ourselves, Sheffield, Brighton and Burnley. Anyway, more a list of ramblings and whims, but you guys know what i mean? You think it could be a surprise team making up one of the 3 or is it 2 of the promoted sides and Brighton as most pundits seem to believe!
  18. birchfest

    Mario's contract?

    Crossing the 'T's and dotting the 'i's hopefully. I can't think why he would want to move away, barring offers from a bundesliga or top 10 premier league side I can't see why he would want to move away from a club thats heading in the right places.
  19. birchfest

    The Surprise Relegation Team

    I think they will do the Man Utd and drop out of the top 6!
  20. birchfest

    The Surprise Relegation Team

    Ah yes completely forgot Southampton and Watford. Id put Watford into a similar grouping as Wolves and Leicester. Southampton would also be in the less of a surprise category, but i think they just had a stinker of a season with a terrible manager kicking it off. I can't see them repeating it. To answer one of the posts above, I'm optimistic we won't, I think we will have a better crack at it than the Alex Neil season but it is looking a tougher league this season and could see us just being pipped to the post if any of the above just never blow up and we don't beat the rivals around us. Personally if i was a betting man and wanted to make some money with ok but not great odds id go for Brighton, Newcastle and Sheffield... though its not out of my thoughts we could replace any one of those 3.
  21. birchfest


    I think it was the biggest mistake to move him on, he was a key player that season and we ended up with nowhere near as an effective midfield the following season. This might sound harsh, but if that rumour is true (and with the hindsight of Grabban went on to do by way of disruption) we picked the wrong person to send away. I think Blackburn could be playoff challengers for next year!
  22. birchfest


    That would be how you'd kill all momentum. He seems a smart guy, unless it was retire after 1 season crazy money, the exposure and the chance to write yourself into football history for both himself and finland is here in the biggest league in the world.
  23. birchfest

    New Academy and Gym

    Very impressive, it also likely frees up space in the older buildings and allows those to be reshaped and used better. It sticks with me, and this might seem obvious, the comment from a few seasons or so ago that when players come to look around and sign, the training ground is one of the most important factors; More so than Carrow road, 3 hours a week as opposed to 5 days a week, the facilities need to scream high level and an opportunity to develop. If we are especially looking to start attracting the brightest and best prospects, this is a huge factor, along side being a club to actually give contracts and opportunities to academy players.
  24. birchfest

    Ralf Fahrmann Medical

    Hmmm for that price in wages they won't be just getting him in to warm the bench, they obviously want serious competition for the number 1 spot, perhaps that will bring the best out of Krul. Personally Freeing up Oxbrough to be able to go out on loan is a master stroke, say Krul gets a Red at Anfield we have Fahrmann to come in and Mcgovern on the bench. Thats a logical set up, whilst someone as young as the Ox needs to be getting games and experience, perhaps ready to become next seasons number 2 or competition for 1. He will progress more playing and making mistake and learning in league 1 or 2 than sat on the bench.
  25. birchfest

    Mario's contract?

    I have no doubt the club view this as a priority, especially now Ben has signed a new contract that means our 3 'wonder kids' as tied to new deals. Vrancic is a classy operator and largely got unlucky with injuries and then the good form of others to keep him out of the side. That spell when he came in for Lietner was probably the best football he played for us, no doubt he would have kept his place for the rest of the season but for injury!