Noted - cheers, too. Things will change soon as I''m working on a new website with a couple of others, which will incorporate the blog and expand on other things. Should be fun. Will look better, too.
I''m not your monkey. If you think I''m going to go through the Hull game and say ''well in the 54th minute he did this'', you''ll be waiting a while. I''ve stated, in numerous posts, that Howson''s contribution in the Hull game was a strong one and I''m hardly the only one with that opinion. I reject the assertion he was crap against Everton, and in the final months of last season he was putting in good performances for the final three months of the campaign. Some only recall the WBA and Man City games because of the goals, but he didn''t just suddenly spring onto the scene then. He was excellent for weeks. So my view of things is he should play, behind the striker. Fer is best as a deeper midfielder, box to box and able to use his strength to get amongst players, win the ball and drive forward. Hoolahan I would have on the bench as he''s struggled to impress against either Everton or Hull. Try not to take that personally; I''ve not insulted you all afternoon. You''re the one who called me a c*nt.
[quote user="Jimmy Smith"]If you had to then Holtamania, who is responsible for us losing at Hull?[/quote]
For me, it was a collective team failure. It wasn''t helped by selecting a couple of players out of position, but the team didn''t perform well enough, especially in the final third. No one individual or performance is to blame - the game isn''t played in isolation. They were repeatedly incapable of stringing together passes when and where it mattered, repeatedly gave away stupid freekicks and displayed some pretty crap decision making. It was a bad day at the office. I go into more detail on the blog if you fancy giving it a read.
What I (and others) have tried to say is that Howson, not only in the opening games of this season but the final 2 or 3 months of last, has put in a number of very good performances in the centre of the pitch, especially when he isn''t burdened with a defensive responsibility. He gets better when he''s able to influence the game in the final third, has a good range of passing, covers a lot of ground and, when allowed to get forward properly, can score goals.
Whether that means the creative, playmaking role that Wes has or a more box to box role, who knows. I know I certainly haven''t called him a playmaker in this thread, nor have I called him superb against Hull - just the best we had, on a day with little competition.
Incidentally, Lavanche, keep calling me a c**t because I don''t have the inclination to support claims that I haven''t made (and even if I had, I''m at work) - it makes you seem rational and balanced.
You can be as facetious as you like but you know full well it isn''t that simple. How about you go and watch the game and come back to me, without setting up a straw man and pretending that the onus is on one player to be the creative lynchpin that the forwards all rely on. Stats are great, I use them all the time, but they''re as useful as a chocolate teapot without context which, without watching, you demonstrably do not have. Then come back to me and tell me Howson wasn''t getting the ball into the final third, tell me that Hull weren''t defending with 2 deep banks and crowding out players in the final third, tell me that collective decision making in the final third of the pitch wasn''t terrible, tell me that he wasn''t a player to actually fire shots towards goal. Please. But to not watch the game but make the decision in your mind, based on match stats, of who played well, or who didn''t do their job, or who does or doesn''t deserve praise? Astonishing.
Right. Chances created - and by this I mean a pass that directly leads to a shot on goal - :
Howson - 4
The next highest, on both sides:
Garrido - 2
Huddlestone - 2
Whittaker - 1
Turner - 1
Snodgrass - 1
RVW - 1
Fer? Tettey? Johnson? Redmond? 0. Each.
[quote user="Lavanche"]I''m a person who knows that every coin has a two sides and I have no reason to not accept other people''s opinion and discuss about them.[/quote]
[quote user="Lavanche"]Take the Howson classes of already ^^ He was very poor in Everton game. He looked bad and stats show he was bad. End of discussion. [/quote]
In the Fer thread last week you stated that Howson was the worst midfielder, and said the stats backed you up. When I tried to show the stats demonstrated him as better than Johnson at the very least (as he was the most equivalent midfielder, with them both being given the deeper position), you just ignored it and reiterated the stats back you up. I''ve got little interest in banging my head against a brick wall and trying to reiterate the point.
[quote user="Lavanche"][quote user="holtamania"]
"I didn''t see the game but his heatmap tells me...." is up there with the best/worst things I''ve ever read.
[/quote] Well if you dont catch the point I cant help you. I dont know if Howson played well or not, but people tell me he did, but his heat map says quite much he played most part of the game in our righ flank and not behind the striker. Got it?[/quote]
For the first 45 minutes he played on the right wing. Despite seeing little of the ball, he worked hard and created 3 chances on goal, more than any other player on the pitch. Yet it''s fair to say he was marginalised and out of play most of the half.
At half time he was switched into a central position and Snodgrass was put on the right. From here he was our best player on the pitch, tidy and accurate on the ball and incisive going forward, continued to look to create chances and tested the keeper with some stinging shots from range, as well as a couple of others that went over. He was, without much competiton, our best player - in a central position, attacking the final third.
You don''t get that from a heatmap.
The only way you''d have Howson in the "bottom half of our players in Everton game" is if you were talking utter rubbish.
The only player better than him against Everton was Whittaker.
And nobody was better than him against Hull.
[quote user="Lavanche"]Stats are not everything, but for me those stats just proves what I saw saturday and which was that our holding players had a bad day and Hoolahan had to play too much out of real position to be effective as he can be and we lost the battle in middlefield and you really cant prove anything else as stats almost every area show that Howson was very poor and other two were average. I would say that Johnson was poor too, but if you take count of his role and his passing ratings before Everton match, he had average day in his standards. God damn if he could pass the ball like Fox...[/quote]
An old quote about statstics and lamp-posts comes to mind. And I like stats, I use them all the time on the blog - with some context. But seeing as you like stats so much, lets look at the midfielders yesterday. Howson and Johnson: same number of interceptions and tackles. Howson: more clearances, all of which found teammates. Howson: less fouls.
This is the player, remember, who isn''t the more specialist defensive midfielder of the two. And the player who spent the last 20 minutes playing in an advanced role. So I''m a touch confused as how Howson, with better stats than Johnson, is considered the ''very poor'' one in midfield, so it got me thinking: maybe he''s talking about pass completion.
So I had a look at that, and you can get the chalkboards from Statszone. And here''s the thing: with the exception of one pass, every incomplete pass from Howson was into the final third of the pitch. They were passes from trying to create chances, trying to play in Bennett down the right or RVW off the last defender. Otherwise, all of his passes were safe and completed. As for Bradley, he did indeed complete more, but in the first two thirds of the pitch. He played 9 and 18 passes into the defensive and middle thirds of the pitch, compared to 2 and 9 for Howson. I would expect him to complete these, because they''re the safe option. He was looking to find a yellow shirt and take the safe pass, often to a fullback. Howson also completed these - he just did less of them, because he was looking for attacking options. I''m not going to criticise a midfielder for looking to build attacks, and if he was losing the ball, he wasn''t doing it in a threatening area.
This is aside from the fact that, within minutes of Howson moving to an attacking midfield position, we created 3 chances, 2 of which he was central to, as I went into detail in on the blog.