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Fr. Chewy Louie

Leitner

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Mo is obviously a very talented player, but I wonder if his strengths are not really relevant for us at the moment. Playing in a confident team which has the majority of possession, he will look classy and metronomic, but that's just not us right now.

He's never offered us a massive goal or assist threat, and I'm just not sure what he does bring at the moment. Even last season I wanted him to have a bigger direct impact on games, rather than "keeping us ticking over".

If Mario was fit, I'd want to see him in there, as he can add a bit more attacking momentum.

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Vrancic has a wider range of passing which from deep is a great option we don't really have at the moment. But Leitner generally looks good deeper too - the problem is he's struggled with intense pressing from the opposition. I half think Vrancic might have the same problem.

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Leitner is far too lightweight. We had a wake-up call with that first pen but within a minute Moritz was caught dithering with time he didn't have and Urinals scored. He can only play a certain way and is easily bullied. Vrancic has a little bit more about him IMO.

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Leitner is the perfect foil for a midfielder destroyer. Put him next to Amadou and he'll be more effective. 

As much as I trust Farke, I do find his decision to push Leitner into an advanced role slightly odd. He's clearly so much more comfortable with the play in front of him, and therefore suits the deeper role. Providing he's got a ball winner next to him. 

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20 minutes ago, Drazen Muzinic said:

Leitner is far too lightweight. We had a wake-up call with that first pen but within a minute Moritz was caught dithering with time he didn't have and Urinals scored. He can only play a certain way and is easily bullied. Vrancic has a little bit more about him IMO.

Wasn't it Cantwell doing the dithering? But yeah, once the opposition have the measure of him, he's easy to target.

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1 hour ago, Drazen Muzinic said:

Leitner is far too lightweight. We had a wake-up call with that first pen but within a minute Moritz was caught dithering with time he didn't have and Urinals scored. He can only play a certain way and is easily bullied. Vrancic has a little bit more about him IMO.

When Leitner wasn't in the team he was the answer to all our prayers, now he is in the team it's Vrancic's turn to be over hyped. 

Could do with his ability to score from range but he's got no pace, I predict an anti climax. 

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1 minute ago, TeemuVanBasten said:

When Leitner wasn't in the team he was the answer to all our prayers, now he is in the team it's Vrancic's turn to be over hyped. 

Could do with his ability to score from range but he's got no pace, I predict an anti climax. 

Not sure he's being over-hyped, just seems to fit what we need a bit more currently.

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Also Vrancic was written off in our first season and proved most of our fans wrong, and has generally been very good when he's played since. Not sure he suffered from his lack of pace last season.

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The reality of the PL has hit and that reality is that none of our midfield options are up to the level needed to be competitive in this league. This thread could have been started about any of the midfield options we have. They are quality championship midfielders but it’s very apparent at this level the midfielders they are up against are physically far stronger and also technically superior. 

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Tettey still seems to be a good destroyer at this level, and perhaps offers more to the squad that at Championship level.

One thing that is perhaps overlooked is the lack of genuine attacking threat in the current squad (due to injuries), meaning if a team can mark Pukki out of the game they inevitably stop us scoring. I think the return of Hernandez will help occupy opposition backlines to the extent that players like Leitner, Vrancic (if he returns) and Buendia will have more space and time to be effective.

That said, I have never been as convinced as some other supporters by Leitner, and despite Steipermann getting absolutely hammered on here, we looked far more effective in the second half against United.

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Leitner is not a no 10;   he has been tried there several times and has not impressed  - dictating the pace from deeper his what he does well.

 

Mario is a more direct threat and offers a different view, his time will come - but like onel, while he will be an improvement but not the key change - which can only come from CB.

 

4141 does not suit Leitner or us.  Back to 4231 for me,  with Tettey & either Leitner or trybull sitting deep would be my way ahead,  with Amadou taking a lead there once we get a second fit CB.   That should give us the physicality in the core we currently lack. 

 

This was always going to be a tough season,  the injuries have disrupted more than just the names on the team sheet.     

 

We did create chances (Buendia has created more than any player outside the big six clubs) - its the back line that needs some consistency.   Its far from lost and we can turn this around.     Bring on the next the couple of games.

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2 hours ago, TeemuVanBasten said:

When Leitner wasn't in the team he was the answer to all our prayers, now he is in the team it's Vrancic's turn to be over hyped. 

 

I think that is known in betting terms as a reverse scapegoat

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I think Kenny would do well in stieps role, he's good in the air, can finish and is quite physically robust. Untill Mario is fit , then Moritz is our best deep lying midfielder alongside a bodyguard type . Tom Trybull could also be deployed in midfield instead of Moritz, he's better defensively and although doesn't have the look of a ballplaying mid, his forward passing is pretty decent. Although I like DF very much I do feel he is a little conservative with his team selection,  he does however have whole new problem on his hands if Amadou is out for a while. This has turned out to be even tougher than I expected it to be, but I also never thought we'd have so many injured at the same time. 

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When enough defenders are fit, play a 4-1-2-3 formation then it would be great pairing to have Leitner alongside McClean, Steipermann or Vrancic with Amadou as the holding defender behind them allowing more fluidity through to the front three of Buendía Pukki & Hernandez.

Edited by Indy

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Leitner has never been effective for us in that advanced role. He, arguably, could still be effective in that deeper role, as long as he has robust protection alongside him. But he is physically lightweight and doesn't really offer the killer passes or goal threat that Mario offers. Mario had a huge bearing on getting us over the line last year and I'd love to see what he can do in this division.

Mo may be a luxury player we're going to struggle to accommodate, I fear, at this level. Though I think partly the issue is that physically having Leitner, Cantwell and Buendia in them middle is just too lightweight; we were certainly more effective in the second half with,  particularly, Hernandez's strength, and to a lesser degree the awkward physicality of Stipermann. Mario actually offers a bit more presence in the middle too, which can only help us at the moment. 

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I think if you’re seeing Mo as a luxury player, Emi has to be in that category too - and ‘luxury’ players often look lightweight when things aren’t going your way. 
 We could do with some ‘stodgy’ performances, making us hard to break down, to get back on track (a la PNE at home last season) though we possibly don’t have the necessary fit players to put out such an XI.

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1 minute ago, Branston Pickle said:

I think if you’re seeing Mo as a luxury player, Emi has to be in that category too - and ‘luxury’ players often look lightweight when things aren’t going your way. 
 We could do with some ‘stodgy’ performances, making us hard to break down, to get back on track (a la PNE at home last season) though we possibly don’t have the necessary fit players to put out such an XI.

I think you're right that Emi too is probably in the luxury category, to an extent. And having both Emi and Mo in the side (+ Todd) when we're obviously struggling is compounding things at the moment. I'd have Em in the starting line-up first though out of the three of them, because he is stronger on the ball, generally, and should offer the most threat going forward. His theatrics yesterday though were really quite grating to watch, even as a City fan. If he could just harness the energy he puts into rolling around into getting stuck into the opposition and going forward then it would be a help.

You're right though that Farke's options to tinker are limited by the injuries. I think Hernandez showed yesterday though that if he's fit enough to start he surely should (probably at Cantwell's expense). Like others I also wonder at what point Drmic might be considered worth starting as the striker, with Pukki playing behind him like he did at the start of last season with Rhodes. I can't see how it would hurt.  

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I guess it's a positive step forward that people are now at last acknowledging that the best person to fill the Stiepermann role isn't Stiepermann or Leitner.

A plea to Farke - please give it a try, Buendia or McLean or Drmic, even Cantwell. There's nothing to lose.

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Leitner can knock the ball about without a doubt but isn't fast enough or physically strong enough to be effective at Premiership level end of.

 

I've never understood the love in some fans have had with Leitner, exactly for the reasons above. 

 

Not fair on him or the team to play him in the advanced midfield role, best role is sitting in front of the back 4 with a strong defensive midfielder alongside him!

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When we played Newcastle, Leitner was superb and dictated the game. Against better midfields, he will struggle. If was capable of dictating play against top 10 premier league sides, he’d be playing for one.

5 of the next 6 matches are against teams more akin to Newcastle than Man Utd quality and I would expect Leitner to be far more effective in these matches.

This assumes he plays as a deep lying midfielder and not in the no 10 role, where he really shouldn’t ever be considered again. 

 

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39 minutes ago, kingsway said:

Not fair on him or the team to play him in the advanced midfield role,

When you are seriously struggling for goals it is a bit of an odd decision to put a player who has scored 7 goals in 184 games in the #10 position. Especially when the biggest problem with his predecessor in that position was the amount of chances he was scuffing.

If Roberts is a flop then this is failed summer business, because we'd need somebody on the right to allow Buendia to be the #10 we need. Farke may have to try something unorthodox and bring in Byram and move Aarons to the right side to allow Buendia to accommodate that #10 spot. He created more goals for Pukki than any other player last season, and he's not going to do that when expected to sit so deep.

I hope Farke gives serious consideration to seeing what Roberts can do in a starting XI on that right side. 

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3 hours ago, Grando said:

I think you're right that Emi too is probably in the luxury category, to an extent. And having both Emi and Mo in the side (+ Todd) when we're obviously struggling is compounding things at the moment. I'd have Em in the starting line-up first though out of the three of them, because he is stronger on the ball, generally, and should offer the most threat going forward. His theatrics yesterday though were really quite grating to watch, even as a City fan. If he could just harness the energy he puts into rolling around into getting stuck into the opposition and going forward then it would be a help.

You're right though that Farke's options to tinker are limited by the injuries. I think Hernandez showed yesterday though that if he's fit enough to start he surely should (probably at Cantwell's expense). Like others I also wonder at what point Drmic might be considered worth starting as the striker, with Pukki playing behind him like he did at the start of last season with Rhodes. I can't see how it would hurt.  

Why does there seem so little support for playing TWO strikers? We (as fans) and the manager seem 100% content to continue playing a lone striker even when the goals have totally dried up.  We have now scored just a miserable two goals in last five games. Of course as the saying goes..............'its everyone 's responsibility to defend and everyone's responsibility to score', but we need to do something different for a change. 

Pukki played with such fire and work rate last season and for most of this but in the last two home games he's looked bereft of those characteristics. The burden of being lone striker is taking it's toll as far as I can see. Play Drmic up front with him and get some crosses in the air for a change. When was the last time Onel (even when fit) actually did that? Reason - he knows there's no point as Farke does not select players to offer that option. Farke has striker options - Drmic, Srbeny and Idah but is very loath to use them. Surely if you're not scoring then your main forward HAS to have a partner to play off!! What's there to lose? Potentially a hell of a lot to gain. For once Farke was positive in the timing of his substitutions. He now needs to embrace that strategy and use his other attacking options.        

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8 hours ago, JF said:

The reality of the PL has hit and that reality is that none of our midfield options are up to the level needed to be competitive in this league. This thread could have been started about any of the midfield options we have. They are quality championship midfielders but it’s very apparent at this level the midfielders they are up against are physically far stronger and also technically superior. 

JF. You have summed up perfectly the situation before us. I thought we would be performing better albeit that the injury situation has not helped. However it is abundantly clear that we are in for a big struggle in the Premiership. It is very noticeable how powerful and physically stronger the opposition are, particularly in midfield. We have good Championship players in that area but this season they have made little impact. They are very quickly closed down and unable to find much space and consequently Pukki is totally isolated. Our attacking game is to be applauded but the facts are we do not have the overall quality for this to be successfull and we will get less points than say Villa and Sheff Utd because they play a more defensive game i.e. Hughton style, which I personally would not want to see every week. I agree with our financial policy, we do not want dodgy overseas owners, and we will continue to be a yo yo team. Thats not being negative - simply realistic !!!

To return to the subject, Leitner just plays the easy ball, is not a defensive midfielder, and has little impact further up the pitch. Quite rightly he spent some time on the bench last season.

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9 hours ago, TeemuVanBasten said:

When Leitner wasn't in the team he was the answer to all our prayers, now he is in the team it's Vrancic's turn to be over hyped. 

Could do with his ability to score from range but he's got no pace, I predict an anti climax. 

I liked your post, but I had similar doubts about Onel. So far I’m happy to be proven wrong.

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11 minutes ago, Nuff Said said:

I liked your post, but I had similar doubts about Onel. So far I’m happy to be proven wrong.

And I'd love to be proved wrong, I really don't want to be this pessimistic.... Its just the place I've reached. 

Edited by TeemuVanBasten

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17 hours ago, TeemuVanBasten said:

He's no better than David Fox who found his game time limited for similar reasons. 

I think Leitner is considerably better than David Fox and his career kind of shows that too.

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Personally, I don't think it's worth singling out players. We could do this all day, with each of the players in that starting 11 against Man Ure.

For example, Aarons too far up the pitch when we allowed Rashford the freedom of Carrow Road for their second. Amadou being completely out of line with Godfrey. Cantwell losing the ball on a regular basis. Emi continually rolling about. Pukki looking lethargic etc. etc.

Unfortunately, we find ourselves in a situation where we're bereft of confidence due to 5 dire performances, lack of players, etc. and that is taking it's toll on the players as much as it is the fans.

Edited by BobLoz3

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3 hours ago, hogesar said:

I think Leitner is considerably better than David Fox and his career kind of shows that too.

Nicklas Bendtner has a better CV than Teemu Pukki. 

Leitner can prove that on the pitch then, Fox did well under Lambert in this league. 

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Interesting to see what happens in the next few games. If Tettey & Trybull both start, one from Leitner & McLean will surely be benched, possibly both if Stiepermann gets the nod. Vrancic should come into the equation soon too. If they can all stay fit, it gives good options but the back four need protection, which detracts from the offensive aspects of the philosophy and makes it difficult to currently justify starting Leitner. And this in games that, in theory, should suit his style. All these injuries look to have dented so much of the positivity and shook the confidence of the squad. We need to get points on the board. 

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