Jump to content
Note to existing users - password reset is required Read more... ×
Sign in to follow this  
Parma Ham's gone mouldy

Parma’s Tactics Masterclass 17

Recommended Posts

Coaches pay close attention to responses and repeating errors when under presssure.

We have seen enough of Farke’s (and Webber’s) Norwich to start making some clear assertions about the tactical intentions, the benefits and negatives of the approach, its current success or otherwise, the personnel available and their suitability and adaptation to the system.

Make no mistake there was pressure today. Sadly it revealed a little more than the coach would have liked.

We can of course always ‘go again’, be ‘disappointed but we move on’, though - contrary to popular idiom - not all games are created equal.

After a good period of preparation and coaching work, Norwich were slow out of the blocks today and lethargic, bereft of energy thereafter. Why? What has happened to the clarity of purpose, the player buy in, the philosophy, the over-arching playing methodology?

Sadly the reality is that a finely balanced defend-and-attack is an internet message board mirage and a string of compromises designed to increase offensive penetration is floundering on a patchwork of flawed playing resources, lack of confidence and a paucity of weapons with which to tactically hurt the opposition.

It is accepted that to increase attacking potency, some defensive compromises must be made - and naturally vice versa. Sadly for Farke he is reliant on a few key players and they are not having a regular or potent enough impact to allow for the squad-wide implementation of paper tactical plans.

The scrabbling, passive Trybull of today is a shadow of the confident terrier of a month or so back. He looks mentally and physically tired. It is such a key position and a fundamentals structural role that glues and facilitates several others. Today’s idea of the inverted triangle with Vrancic and Maddison playing in more advanced positions to support Nelson and Murphy didn’t function. Vrancic was not so much anonymous as technically poor today, with some surprisingly poor touches, poor options and a sense of palpably frustration at his own poor performance. Reversing him to the base of this diamond was a risky option as Trybull exited and his first movement was flawed, drifting towards the ball and losing spatial awareness. Not an experiment to be repeated.

Maddison was the best player on the pitch, though truthfully neither side had a great deal of quality. Cover your eyes, but if I was writing one of the Scouting reports of yesteryear I would certainly note that he looked like a player desperately looking for - and needing - a higher level of player around him. He spun out, shielded, changed pace and direction endlessly searching for options. They will come to him, but they won’t be wearing yellow shirts.

A Norwich side that balances the books at the end of the season (or before) and is short of Maddison, Nelson, Klose will struggle to stay in this league. Masterclass 16 asked if we could do better with less. Today would say that we can’t. We desperately need Nelson at 9, though his frustration shows as he shoots from impossible angles and situations. I don’t blame him. He is playing somewhat for himself and every one that he nails will be an ever-louder come-and-get-me siren call. We might keep Murphy, as he looks increasing forlorn and makes some poor on-field decisions. He is a rare weapon though and can make things happen, even when off form. His goal today a case in point. A first time strike from nowhere, instinctive, running into the ball and striking across his body. A deflection yes, lucky no. A weapon.

His running and engagement thereafter was pretty poor however, his habit of waiting for the ball to come to him, waiting for a better ball than he is going to get, plus very half-hearted tactical closing and positioning (everything that Jerome does well to be fair, showing we just don’t get it all at our level) makes him look a little like his heart is elsewhere. Playing him higher was interesting, though he didn’t show enough strength and the timing of of his forward runs was not great. He looked not to have a great deal of confidence in most of his teammates to find him though.

Klose is key to our play, showing nicely with an open body to receive from Gunn, faking (as Gunn does well too) to dart into one space, then spinning brightly out to another to receive and start the play. Not something that Hanley was too keen to do I noted and something that Zimmerman gamely works at, but which doesn’t come entirely naturally to him.

Which brings us to the tactical contention of several ex-players, namely that Farke is trying to implement a methodology and style with playing resources that are not good enough to do it. There is truth and falsehood in the contention.

Some of the playing resources are limited - Hanley, Husband, Stiepermann, Vrancic, Franke, Jerome would not likely walk into lots of top half sides - though it is the mental side of the game that is required for the methodology. I was hugely concerned by the lack of off-the-ball thought today, the poverty of options for the man in possession was striking and worrying. This is not what the coach wants, not what he is telling them and not what they should be doing.

The reversion to a non-inverted central midfield triangle second half and a back three was perfectly reasonable - it should suit the wide wing back players and three-quarter runners like Murphy - it should provide many more natural passing angle options and natural on-pitch shapes, but it clearly only served to confuse the players, who looked immediately lost, disjointed and unclear.

Klose moves out of Station to track an attacking breaker into to the left wing back area for the goal, though nobody dropped into his space, the remaining back-tracking defenders just shuffled mindlessly over and exposed a third of the pitch down the opposition’s left side. It did not require a clever, crossfield switch of play, it was just rank bad coordination and lack of shape. A coaching manual horror-show, exposing a lack of comfort and understanding of the roles necessary with the new shape. Clearly the understanding is not drilled into them after all, the tactical flexibility is not entrenched, the lack of confidence is rendering the players passive and uncomfortable tactically and technically.

The best, typically expensive, players are not necessarily better than a Championship equivalent on their day, they can however perform to such a level nearly every week, under pressure and can be relied upon to perform their duties with a high degree of repetition. We don’t have that, we haven’t got the money to buy it and it will take a long time to train it. Particularly as those who have hitherto been training the Future are not believed to have been doing a good enough job.

Thus we revert back to the original, painful question for the future model: Can we do better with (much) less?

Less money, less players, less experience, less weapons? Even Oliveira (£5m), Wildschut (£3.5m) and our jewel Maddison (£3m) may be beyond our range. Perhaps even more painfully, even if we could afford them in a year’s time, would they want to come?

A trading surplus of around £20m is going to be required by the end of the summer next year. Watching Norwich vs Barnsley this time next year with a line up shorn of Nelson, Maddison, Klose and perhaps even Murphy would greatly reduce the potency and entertainment of today’s side. Will the faithful keep filling the theatre of dreams to watch a promise of tomorrow. The Academy is key, but it needs to produce a weapon or two next summer, or at least some decent stocking-fillers. The timeframe is short and the expectation is high.

The right structure, implemented too late, without the finances to support it, may lead to results undoing the best laid plans. The Coach - and to a lesser degree the Sporting Director - will suffer the electric shocks as the front-of-house lightning rod, though it is lack of foresight and wasteful short-termism at a higher level that has created the painful actualité.

Parma

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I really love these posts but it just further highlights what I''m really worried about. We''ve got good people in place, but we missed the boat, we reacted instead of being proactive and now we don''t have the finances to fulfill the potential in this structure.

It''s so frustrating, but I guess that comes with supporting a club like ours, we''ll always be nearly men, looking back in hindsight will be an exercise in self masochism and to go slightly OT we just can''t seem to shake the trait of being a club that just can''t rise to the occasion of beating small or poorly performing clubs.

We''ll always be one of those teams that can beat Sheffield Utd away then lose abjectly to bottom of the league Bolton, I''ve only been following the club since 2001 but from what I gather this has always been a Norwich thing and it''ll never change no matter what coaching team or players we have.

For me all our current problems stem from getting relegated in 2013 and not sacking hughton early enough. I''m as frustrated as anyone by our current struggles but I think Webber/Farke deserve our full support, it''s not their fault we''re in this mess and even if you have grievances with the owners I don''t think turning on the team would do us any favours.

I genuinely believe if we went down to L1 now we''d stay there indefinitely. It sucks that we''ve allowed ourselves to fall to this position so easily but I think we need to stick with the team/manager this year and just accept that we''re Championship also-rans this year and results like drawing to Barnsley at home and basically just the level we''re at now

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Incorrect with a couple of points:

Maddison was not the best player on the pitch - Pinto was. He was the only one who had a proper ''go'' and made more progress down the right than any other player did anywhere else. Madds was a bit off-colour compared to usual.

The change to a back 3 was not reasonable at all - we were winning at HT. Changing the defensive structure unnecessarily during a game is too risky for it''s own good. As it showed early into the second half.

Klose is overrated as a passer - when he tries a longer pass he fails 80% of the time. I prefer defenders like Hanley in the champs. Leave the passing to those who naturally can. Hanley looked like a proper, solid, traditional defender. Winning everything in the air, covering well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Mastoola''s masterclass. We should stop trying to play football in our own half and start trying to play football in our opponents half.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sorry but as per usual it’s utter tripe! If it’s such a masterclass why aren’t you involved with the game professionally?

I stopped reading at the point you said Maddison was the best player on the pitch, when he clearly wasn’t

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
To be clear: Maddison was the player on the pitch with the most quality. The essence of of the point is our assets, Future and respective quality. Pinto as Man of the Match was perfectly reasonable. He put in good effort, though that does not make him a tactical weapon.

As for a game of ‘put-your-medals-on-the-table’ I’ll take that bet. I was trained as a player at one of the top ten clubs in the world, coached in Europe, qualified under an International Manager who subsequently tried to sign me and was heavily schooled in the Ajax both in Holland and whilst in Italy. I worked full time at a Premier League club in England and left to run a business when better opportunities presented themselves.

What are your qualifications?

Parma

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
From Ricardo’s report thread on Yanic and the need for unified movement and thought processes - particularly off the ball - to make the system work effectively:

‘Yanic needs to be coached to drive effectively into spaces between the lines in the three quarter areas.

For this to be effective however, a number of other things have to be achieved. Passing players need to put better messages on the ball and weight passes into the spaces he needs to be attacking, players further forward need to be making runs away from that space to create the opening for the ball to go into.

Yanic himself ideally needs to be already moving before he gets the ball. He can accelerate dramatically from a standing start, it his brain is a little cumbersome and he delays the movement, puts his head down and tends to move in very straight lines. He has a - not unpleasing, but unconventional - habit ornament running right through or over players, rather than round. He makes it work, but it’s a little too random for anything other than attacking areas.

His story is a microcosm of some of the issues in the Masterclass. The model requires multiple parts functioning in unison. We do not appear to have the off-the-ball brainpower to do it currently. It is not about individuals, but an organic unit thinking and moving together’.

Parma

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A great read as usual Parma.

I would like to quote Sir Bobby Charlton, from his book, His England Years, when he talks about Pele and that in 1958, Brazil were using psychologists. To paraphrase, he spoke about a goal the young Brazilian scored, when the player himself, just before he struck the ball from distance, shouted out Goooooaaal. Guess what!!

It will come as no surprise to you that I am a firm believer that; Performance = 20% ability + 80% attitude (mindset). Not for one moment am I suggesting any of our players have Pele''s ability but they could have 100% of his mindset and very likely the great game he was about to play already existed in his head, so why don''t our players have the same thought patterns?

You mention mental ability in your post and I wonder, some 60 years on, whether the lesson has been learned, specifically at NCFC?

I do know the mental side of performance has been ''toyed'' with but as I understand it on a voluntary basis. Surely we need to get all the players singing off the same song sheet.

Mr D Drogba once said, 90% of my game is in my head.

Following on from the above, I would not start with Josh until such time as he has the mindset to challenge for the ball, particularly in the air. I would also look at starting players who may, or may not, have greater ability than others but do have a better mindset. In this instance I would recall Russ Martin and Steven Naismith, both of whom have a winners mindset that would probably add to our cause.

The his may not be the future but we need to consider the here and now, because in my opinion they will not weaken the side, particularly if we go 3 at the back with RM on the right to help and release Pinto. Furthermore and imo, RM is a better distributor of the ball than anyone else we have in the back four. Added to which, imo again, if we are not in the top six very soon, or at least climbing toward such heights, there will be repercussions come January.

At this point I would like to add one of my own quotes, "The discipline to train the body reveals character whilst maintaining performance, the willingness to train the mind builds character whilst enhancing performance."

Finally, I quote Danny Blanchflower, "Let''s equalise before they score." Make of that what you will but very apt today, if not on other occasions.

Sent from my iPad

Sent from my iPad

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Parma you ask what are my qualifications, an FA Coaching badge is what I have as well as an FA refereeing badge, what qualifications from the FA do you have?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote user="Baldyboy"]Parma you ask what are my qualifications, an FA Coaching badge is what I have as well as an FA refereeing badge, what qualifications from the FA do you have?[/quote]

Did you get your fire building or Granny road crossing badge at scouts as well Baldy?

Plus putting up that you have a Ref''s badge is like putting a target on your forehead.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
All I did was answer the question he asked me but I will bow to all those with superior knowledge like Hogesar and Nexus 😂😂

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Baldyboy wrote the following post at 2017-11-19 3:14 PM:

Parma you ask what are my qualifications, an FA Coaching badge is what I have as well as an FA refereeing badge, what qualifications from the FA do you have?

As an ex referee myself Baldy, I would keep quiet about claiming to have a FA refereeing badge. They aren’t too difficult to come by old chap, available on e bay for £6.49. Not too sure that badge actually qualifies you as having a greater knowledge of the game than anyone else, judging on some of the refereeing I have seen this season! Parma might just have one over you there!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote user="Baldyboy"]All I did was answer the question he asked me but I will bow to all those with superior knowledge like Hogesar and Nexus 😂😂[/quote]

About time, know your role peon.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I dont agree with everything Parma says but then again I see us from a fan perspective pretty much all the time whereas Parmas past means he can objectively analyse alongside that. He can see the view from a coaches perspective, at least.

Since none of us have coached or been involved in football at anywhere near the same level of Parma, we should be pleased to have that viewpoint on our forum.

Baldy, you''re the one that tried calling Parma out. He, for the first time (i wish he would have done it to several other posters but he is more restrained than myself) came back at you with quite an illustrious past inside football (subjectively speaking). The fact you came back at him with a referee badge is a little cringe, thats all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
There were further concerns at yesterday’s tactical adjustments - as operated by the players on the field.

The inverted midfield triangle was clearly intended to see Maddison receiving the ball in more advanced positions and thus supporting Oliveira somewhere around the 10 position. Vrancic was also reasonably advanced and there was a notable distance between Trybull and these too. This immediately rang alarm bells.

It is all very well lining up with attacking intent - we do need to score more goals at home - though simply moving more players further forward paradoxically does not mean more attacking play.

It may well result in increased isolation, lack of contact and cohesion from deeper areas, midfield-to-attack and de-facto longer, less accurate balls that serve to favour sides set up to battle for second balls, disrupt play and who are typically less technical. Our stretched midfield made such circumstances far more likely.

Nelson is an occasional tracker (I don’t mind that in a dangerous number 9), though Murphy has less excuse to show such passive space-closing and defensive positioning on turnover.

Expecting Trybull to initiate constructive play, whilst (correctly) adhering rigidly to structural Station is asking too much.

The full backs yesterday were asked to retain shape, in theory freeing the wider three quarter players of Murphy and Stiepermann.

What resulted was Murphy playing higher, occasionally swapping with Nelson (absolutely fine), Stiepermann staying high and wide when we were in possession, Maddison and Vrancic playing a little higher than usual and - as a direct consequence - too much space between the back four and the three quarter four (as nominally operated).

Farke’s preferred system - of ‘dominating the ball’ and being the game-makers - relies on overloads in the deeper areas of the pitch being exploited to create spaces on the opposite sides of the field, plus a permanent provision of a minimum of two and ideally three immediate passing options for the player in possession. Such a system relies on players without the ball placing themselves mentally in the role of the player with the ball and providing a ‘first sight’ option that he himself would want.

It is not that we didn’t see this yesterday, not that the players played poorly and didn’t achieve the technical objective laid down, rather it was that the tactical layout of the side mitigated against it happening at all.

In Masterclass 16 I mentioned that ‘it was early for Mummy to taking away the spinach and bringing back the Macdonalds’ in a tactical approach sense, though the benefit of the doubt was given as some compromise and blending of old-and-new was perhaps understandable.

Yesterday looked rather more like incoherence. A dangerous virus for players’ minds and exactly the instinctive fear in my 16 quote. Players will be resistant, but they will change if your strength of Will and belief carries them with you. Hesitancy, lack of clarity and abandoning of much-championed principles leaves players mentally twixt-and-between leading to the kind of lethargic confusion that was so painfully illustrated in the early part of the second half yesterday.

If this a clear, long-term project. If there is full buy in and commitment to the model from all levels, what is to be afraid of?

Parma

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote user="hogesar"]I dont agree with everything Parma says but then again I see us from a fan perspective pretty much all the time whereas Parmas past means he can objectively analyse alongside that. He can see the view from a coaches perspective, at least.

Since none of us have coached or been involved in football at anywhere near the same level of Parma, we should be pleased to have that viewpoint on our forum.

Baldy, you''re the one that tried calling Parma out. He, for the first time (i wish he would have done it to several other posters but he is more restrained than myself) came back at you with quite an illustrious past inside football (subjectively speaking). The fact you came back at him with a referee badge is a little cringe, thats all.[/quote]

So that proves you don’t read posts Hoggy as I also quoted MY coaching badge, didn’t I!

But never let the facts get in the way of an agenda hey?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I haven''t done any coaching whatsoever, Parma, but I have a feeling that young interational coaches when studying for their badges and taking coaching courses get to see a lot of videos of play from the like of Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Muenchen and so on. And why wouldn''t you study the best if you want to be a great coach?

The problem is that the football universe that is the English Championship is a completely different animal to the universe that is the Champions League.

How many videos of Rochdale vs Stockport or Bolton vs Derby County will Farke have watched during his time as a student Coach? How much time will he have studied the tactics of Arsenal compared to the tactics of an Accrington Stanley?

Well it''s a rhetorical question but am important one because I don''t believe Farke has prepared himself for life in the English Championship and what might work well in the universes he''s previously inhabited don''t work well in the universe he currently occupies.

I''ve said this before and I think the evidence is there that you need to have good quality, intelligent players to operate what really are complicated systems. Being fit and having technical ability isn''t enough to make a complex system work. Players also need to have a footballing brain as well.

So often we have been undone by sides that let us have possession, let us make complicated passing patterns and then hit a long ball down the channels for a striker to run on to. It''s simple, easy to understand and effective at this level.

I accept this more direct style can be nullified at higher levels, but that isn''t where we are playing.

And when you ask footballers to play systems that they don''t really understand and see themselves by lesser teams who are more effective with a more direct style, then they get disheartened and lose confidence.

It is an interesting fact that we have picked up more points when we have had less possession. That suggests the players are less comfortable playing this possession-based game. When we had less possession we had to play more direct and the result was an unbeaten run that took us up the table and that fateful game against Arsenal.

Arsenal shows us the importance of confidence. Some other posters have mentioned the importance of this. For eighty-minutes we outclassed Arsenal and were on the way to a famous victory at the Emirates. The player''s confidence must have been sky-high. Then an 18-year old kid came on and with a couple of touches, burst our bubble.

The players didn''t have time to get over their grief as a few days later they had to go again when our mental attitude was shot to pieces. It really didn''t matter what formation or tactics Farke employed, the lads just weren''t ready to go again.

With three straight losses after the Carabao defeat, not just automatic promotion places have disappeared but the chances of a top six finish looks less likely, and the players know that. They are in end-of-season mode already. Some will be onto their agents to get a move in January.

Farke seems not to know his best team, doesn''t play the tactics needed to get out of this league and the players have picked up on it. Yesterday was a lost-the-dressing-room performance, and we all know to where that leads.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
@Rock the boat
The season before last, having endured a torrid start to the campaign, which saw Mark Robins sacked after the first game and his successor, Chris Powell, replaced by David Wagner early in November, Huddersfield finished 19th in the Championship. Through to the end of that season, the local Huddersfield media and message boards were rife with exactly the same sort of comments as yours. Wagner didn''t understand the Championship, the philosophy was flawed, it didn''t suit the players, they weren''t good enough to make it work, and so on and so forth. So what did the Huddersfield board and Webber do? Decide they''d made a big mistake, sack Wagner and bring in a Championship hardened British coach and some equally Championship hardened players, abandon the new way, and revert to the good old, thoroughly tried and tested, familiar, terrace-comforting route to eventual disappointment and mediocrity? Well no, they stuck to their guns and were duly rewarded. You don''t hear many of those complaints from Huddersfield fans now.
I understand that we are not Huddersfield, that our board is not the Huddersfield board, and that Farke is not Wagner. I don''t expect us to finish as low as 19th this season, and I don''t expect us to be back in the EPL at the end of next season either. But I am absolutely behind what the board and Webber have set in train and hope they follow the Huddersfield example and stick to their guns, and in particular don''t allow the project to be derailed by disillusioned fans. The Championship is changing; debate on here tends to focus almost exclusively on take-overs and money. Just as significant is the influx of foreign coaches, none of whom come with extensive experience of the Championship and all of whom are more familiar with continental skills and player development. The idea that Farke is an aberrant novelty in a stubbornly British football environment is already way off the mark.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[quote user="westcoastcanary"]@Rock the boat
The season before last, having endured a torrid start to the campaign, which saw Mark Robins sacked after the first game and his successor, Chris Powell, replaced by David Wagner early in November, Huddersfield finished 19th in the Championship. Through to the end of that season, the local Huddersfield media and message boards were rife with exactly the same sort of comments as yours. Wagner didn''t understand the Championship, the philosophy was flawed, it didn''t suit the players, they weren''t good enough to make it work, and so on and so forth. So what did the Huddersfield board and Webber do? Decide they''d made a big mistake, sack Wagner and bring in a Championship hardened British coach and some equally Championship hardened players, abandon the new way, and revert to the good old, thoroughly tried and tested, familiar, terrace-comforting route to eventual disappointment and mediocrity? Well no, they stuck to their guns and were duly rewarded. You don''t hear many of those complaints from Huddersfield fans now.
I understand that we are not Huddersfield, that our board is not the Huddersfield board, and that Farke is not Wagner. I don''t expect us to finish as low as 19th this season, and I don''t expect us to be back in the EPL at the end of next season either. But I am absolutely behind what the board and Webber have set in train and hope they follow the Huddersfield example and stick to their guns, and in particular don''t allow the project to be derailed by disillusioned fans. The Championship is changing; debate on here tends to focus almost exclusively on take-overs and money. Just as significant is the influx of foreign coaches, none of whom come with extensive experience of the Championship and all of whom are more familiar with continental skills and player development. The idea that Farke is an aberrant novelty in a stubbornly British football environment is already way off the mark.
[/quote]

Coastie,

I believe that given the right set of circumstances, the method being implemented by Farke, and as described by Parma can work and produce the desired results. But I feel that we are not operating in those circumstances at present to be successful. Even Parma''s recent posts are a lot more circumspect and qualified than they used to be. I get the sense from Parma that not everything will necessarily come together to produce the desired outcomes.

Some of the things that are not working:

Understanding what is required. From the very first games I watched, I felt there was a hesitancy about the play, in that players seemed to want to make sure they were playing to the desired system, rather than playing a natural game. I put this down in the beginning to the fact that these guys had not played together before and there has to be some kind of adjustment period. But I still see this hesitancy in midfield and forward play, as though they are fearful of what the coaches will say or do.

No natural movement. Because they try to play so closely to the system, natural flair goes out of the window. And you need flair to break down defences. We have flair players such as Maddison, Wessi, Pritchard but they operate in a restricted mode. It also becomes boring and stale to watch and the crowd doesn''t get behind you.

We still don''t seem to have a settled side, partly due to injuries to key players but also to the coach adjusting the squad to match the opponents. Farke is a Tinkerman. Tinker to much and people start to think you lack self-belief.

Expectations. With respect to Huddersfield, I think that Norwich fans, whether justified or not, had greater expectations from the team because of the past few seasons of living in the PL. There''s more pressure on the team and on the coaching staff to bring success and people''s expectations make them more impatient, less likely to back the team when things are not going well and less likely to give the coach time to turn things around.

Also Farke isn''t Wagner, obviously. I didn''t follow Wagner closely so I can''t say how mistake-prone he was in his first season, and how he reacted to making mistakes. But Farke has come under criticism for some of his tactical, in-game decision making. To be fair he has improved the defence since the beginning of the season, but against that the attack has worsened, and after the Burnley game the midfied has attracted a lot of comment. Would Wagner have managed it better? I can''t answer.

Time is an enemy creeping up on Farke. We all want him to succeed. He seemed to have pulled it together a month ago, but it very quickly unravelled. Whether he can pull it around a second time remains to be seen.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi Parma. As someone who everyone says worked in the upper levels of football, do u think sometimes managers may over complicate what they ate trying to explain?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Good pov’s Westie and RTB, both entirely valid and well-constructed.

It’s worth being clear on a few points for context for this Norwich side and any other that may develop in the future:

1. The European possession-domination positional play methodology can be taught, it can be learned and it only requires an open mind, some intelligence and the desire to get on the ball.

2. The better-player methodology as operated in England (Alex Neil, many others) requires good players, a bit of short-term (it burns out) motivation, some fighting spirit (it burns out), plenty of money (it burns out).

3. The top leagues - including the Championship - are increasingly dominated by foreign coaches and players. Initially it might have been over-pricing of English talent, now - look away now if you are squeamish - it is because they are better. English clubs have all the money, it is a real trading market and the businesses choose foreign methods.

If you would like a sociology lesson as to why I will posit a theory: The rowers, Cricketers and rugby players - typically of a more advanced intellectual level in England - do not typically play Cricket, Rugby or go Rowing in Europe, they play football, they go to La Masia, to Clarefontaine and are schooled by 30,000 German coaches (In England we have 3,000). Our class system is to blame.

There are of course Bests, Gascoignes and Rooneys born romantically in the streets, which is great, but modern football , systems and management requires intelligence. Motivation and tea cups are not nearly enough.

Anyone who posts simplistic answers to complicated problems does not have access to modern top level football clubs and the way they operate. The attention to detail, analysis, parameters and multiple scenario planning is intense.

Nevertheless this does not make RTB’s post wrong and Westie’s right. We must live in the here and now.

Again there are some clear parameters that we must consider, beyond our immediate frustration at results and lack of recent progress in the methodology.

1. Destruction is easier than creation. The less possession argument can stem from us sitting back and encouraging the usually defensive side out of shape, to allow us to play, penetrate and counter. This is easier away from home as there is expectation on the home side to do more than sit behind an eight-block and occasionally counter. At home ‘dominating the play’ forces us out of defensive shape and allows counters. Hence constructed, methodical possession until relatively high up the pitch. Possession is a defensive weapon even more than an attacking one. It is not possession for possession’s sake: the other side cannot score when you have the ball, mentally it is frustrating to endless defend and chase pigeons, you feel inferior as a player. The ambition is laudable. It is prone to simple counters when unforced errors are made in the wrong areas. This looks bad and is the price to pay.

The players must be able to think for sure there at all times, interlink in a lattice-like way, endless providing options that may very often not be used. It is natural to me as it is the essence of the Ajax teaching that I was schooled in, we will have to learn.

When I say ‘we’ RTB may be right that not all the existing dogs can be taught new tricks. Unless all combined on the pitch it cannot and will not work, it is a unified honeycomb of a methodology hat breaks down entirely if parts do not synchronise. It is not fairytale Barca-lite dream-weaving however. It requires good technique, intelligence, a cool mind and almost perpetual movement.

We saw nothing like that on Saturday. So it is a bit of a mirage to say that it is failing in the Championship as we’re not really operating that way currently.

Westie is certainly right that this is the future however. There is no money to do anything else. Cuts will be savage at the end of the year and Managerial pay-offs are a hugely dirty word currently. Screaming on message boards costs up to £4m in real world money based on Board reports on the payouts to the previous Management team and auxiliaries. Scary indeed. We are not going to be tearing up the blueprint anytime soon.

The new structure and philosophy (it’s not new or advanced in Europe note) has however been implemented far too late with far too little money (comparative to what we have had swirling around) and must now survive severe restructuring.

Whilst RTB is right that I am equivocal about current implementation and tactical adherence to the desired methodology, Westie is right that in the long term this is the spinach we need. Yearning after reductive, yesteryear 2D English simplicity reminds me of a quote from Dutch coach Raymond Verheijen:

‘In football most people prefer the status quo because they fear making a mistake. It’s like a primitive sub-culture where criticism is not tolerated and people protect and defend established ideas. People dislike anyone who questions them because it makes them feel uncomfortable and nobody enjoys being uncomfortable. In football there are many, many things we could do much better, more intelligently’.

Parma

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Loving this thread.
We are where we are Parma. It may well be that we are too late in the sense that it would have been better to embark on it in 2014 or 2016 but we didn''t. We probably weren''t brave enough to because even now it feels like some were dragged from where we were kicking and screaming. So being late is a negative that can only hinder or excuse failure. It''s a new venture even a new era. The newness and hope is what is keeping me sane when I''m not enjoying the games. I saw a criticism that Farke doesn''t know his best team. I''m sure he doesn''t and TBH I wouldn''t expect him to. He can only find out in games what his players are capable of. I hope he learned a lot on Saturday.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Parma,

Your last post is laced throughout with references to ''thinking'' yet you have not responded to the points I made re the psychological side of performance, insomuch how important you may or may not feel we '' fail/succeed'' in this regard.

You are obviously well steeped in the ''tactical'' side of the game are you as steeped in the mental side?

If so I would appreciate your views, if not then so be it.

Thanks in anticipation

Ray

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Parma and Nutty have advanced the debate beyond the reply I was intending to make to RTB this evening (PST that is, not UTC) the gist of which was going to be "Well, would you really expect anything much different at this juncture?". I am not for a moment denying that currently "things are not working", that is as obvious watching on iFollow as from the Barclay. Nor do I disagree with RTB''s suggestion that the new way may be beyond the capabilities of some of those being asked to implement it. What I''m saying is that what I see is pretty much what I was expecting to see at this stage in the process and that we are several transfer windows and academy player development seasons away from where we are heading. Right now we are still in the very early stages, marked by experimentation, inconsistency (real and apparent), adjustment, testing, judgement forming. Where I do disagree with RTB is when he says time is the enemy; on the contrary, time is the ally, impatience is the enemy. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×