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Gibbo

Set Pieces

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Without wanting to seem like I'm criticising the team after an incredible season so far, attacking set pieces do still stand out as an area that could really be improved on.  Defensively, we look much better on set pieces, but attacking corners and wide free kicks just feel like a complete waste of time... and even sometimes trigger off dangerous counters...

Other than Mario's direct free kicks, I can only recall one goal that's come from a corner or wide free kick.  We just don't seem to look dangerous from them like some teams do - where it feels like they can generate dangerous situations on a game by game basis, whereas we might be lucky to generate a dangerous situation once a month.

I can't believe that someone with the technical ability of Emi cannot take a decent set piece with some degree of regularity, so why do we seem to disproportionally fail to come out on top with many of these.  Does the coaching in this area need looking at (if balls would be better put into different zones) or is simply that we don't really have anyone that's consistently good at attacking crosses?

Maybe a little of both, but Pukki isn't going to get his head on much and I can't recall Cantwell heading much. Gibson and Hanley, while quality defenders, don't really seem in the Mackay mould when it comes to corners... they do sometimes connect, but it feels like direction is an after-thought after simply managing to get something on it.

Whatever it is though, it's clearly not working...so it would be nice to see them try something different.  Instead of just lumping it into the box, why don't we use our strengths and try short corners instead and try and fashion an opportunity through passing or at the very least retain position and build another attack. The goal that Idah did score the other week was from something a bit different, with Kenny flicking it on - so maybe that kind of thing sometimes too...

 

 

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When you see some of the more creative corners and free kicks that other teams do, I does make you wonder. Hanley seems to have the incredible ability to get on the end of a cross and head the ball away from danger, at both ends of the pitch.

Perhaps our coaching focuses more on other areas of the game and they've made a deliberate choice to keep corners simple to avoid over complicating things. But I'd much prefer us to take a few short corners or pass it to the edge of the box. We don't just cross the ball and hope from open play, so why should we do that from every set piece?

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9 hours ago, Gibbo said:

Without wanting to seem like I'm criticising the team after an incredible season so far, attacking set pieces do still stand out as an area that could really be improved on.  Defensively, we look much better on set pieces, but attacking corners and wide free kicks just feel like a complete waste of time... and even sometimes trigger off dangerous counters...

Other than Mario's direct free kicks, I can only recall one goal that's come from a corner or wide free kick.  We just don't seem to look dangerous from them like some teams do - where it feels like they can generate dangerous situations on a game by game basis, whereas we might be lucky to generate a dangerous situation once a month.

I can't believe that someone with the technical ability of Emi cannot take a decent set piece with some degree of regularity, so why do we seem to disproportionally fail to come out on top with many of these.  Does the coaching in this area need looking at (if balls would be better put into different zones) or is simply that we don't really have anyone that's consistently good at attacking crosses?

Maybe a little of both, but Pukki isn't going to get his head on much and I can't recall Cantwell heading much. Gibson and Hanley, while quality defenders, don't really seem in the Mackay mould when it comes to corners... they do sometimes connect, but it feels like direction is an after-thought after simply managing to get something on it.

Whatever it is though, it's clearly not working...so it would be nice to see them try something different.  Instead of just lumping it into the box, why don't we use our strengths and try short corners instead and try and fashion an opportunity through passing or at the very least retain position and build another attack. The goal that Idah did score the other week was from something a bit different, with Kenny flicking it on - so maybe that kind of thing sometimes too...

 

 

Two goals from corners this season - away at Cardiff and away at Wycombe. Assuming Gibson is out we might actually be a bit more dangerous from these with Zimmermann back. 

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Our scoring record from set pieces pretty dreadful - just two goals from corners since we beat Man City. Blackburn showed what you can do when given such an opportunity (ok it wasn’t a corner, but not far off); for all their effort they’d not come particularly close to scoring otherwise. 

If we do go up, scoring from open play will become harder again so it’s definitely a string we need to add to our bow.

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You can't have your cake and eat it.

Generally, it's the bigger, more physical teams like the ones managed by McCarthy and Pulis that are consistent threats from set pieces. No team can excel at everything and there has to be a trade-off, and a smaller, more mobile, technically gifted team such as ours are less likely to be dangerous from high set pieces crossed into the box.

The great Barcelona sides of recent years seldom bothered to cross the ball from corners, for example. They knew they were a few inches shorter than the opposition but they were far more technically skilled, so they took most of their corners short and then tried to pass their way into the box.

On the other hand, Stoke fans never complained about their set piece record under Pulis, but they sure as hell complained about the lack of skill, creativity and entertainment.

If we drop Pukki and Dowell for Hugill and Stiepermann, we might trouble a few sides from high set pieces. But if we did decide to do that, we'd be less incisive during open play.

I'm more than happy with the balance we have struck, because it certainly seems to have worked this season.

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10 hours ago, Gibbo said:

Without wanting to seem like I'm criticising the team after an incredible season so far, attacking set pieces do still stand out as an area that could really be improved on.  Defensively, we look much better on set pieces, but attacking corners and wide free kicks just feel like a complete waste of time... and even sometimes trigger off dangerous counters...

Other than Mario's direct free kicks, I can only recall one goal that's come from a corner or wide free kick.  We just don't seem to look dangerous from them like some teams do - where it feels like they can generate dangerous situations on a game by game basis, whereas we might be lucky to generate a dangerous situation once a month.

I can't believe that someone with the technical ability of Emi cannot take a decent set piece with some degree of regularity, so why do we seem to disproportionally fail to come out on top with many of these.  Does the coaching in this area need looking at (if balls would be better put into different zones) or is simply that we don't really have anyone that's consistently good at attacking crosses?

Maybe a little of both, but Pukki isn't going to get his head on much and I can't recall Cantwell heading much. Gibson and Hanley, while quality defenders, don't really seem in the Mackay mould when it comes to corners... they do sometimes connect, but it feels like direction is an after-thought after simply managing to get something on it.

Whatever it is though, it's clearly not working...so it would be nice to see them try something different.  Instead of just lumping it into the box, why don't we use our strengths and try short corners instead and try and fashion an opportunity through passing or at the very least retain position and build another attack. The goal that Idah did score the other week was from something a bit different, with Kenny flicking it on - so maybe that kind of thing sometimes too...

 

 

Just tell Mr Farke in your team meetings Ben if it's not working.

As forum names go you should have tried harder to disguise your identity 😆

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3 hours ago, Rich T The Biscuit said:

Just tell Mr Farke in your team meetings Ben if it's not working.

As forum names go you should have tried harder to disguise your identity 😆

Rich T - I call that in that case, with your user name you are in fact. Lewis Dunk and claim my five pounds! 😉  

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3 minutes ago, Greavsy said:

Rich T - I call that in that case, with your user name you are in fact. Lewis Dunk and claim my five pounds! 😉  

Rumbled 😆

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3 hours ago, Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm Flailing Tube Man said:

You can't have your cake and eat it.

Generally, it's the bigger, more physical teams like the ones managed by McCarthy and Pulis that are consistent threats from set pieces. No team can excel at everything and there has to be a trade-off, and a smaller, more mobile, technically gifted team such as ours are less likely to be dangerous from high set pieces crossed into the box.

The great Barcelona sides of recent years seldom bothered to cross the ball from corners, for example. They knew they were a few inches shorter than the opposition but they were far more technically skilled, so they took most of their corners short and then tried to pass their way into the box.

On the other hand, Stoke fans never complained about their set piece record under Pulis, but they sure as hell complained about the lack of skill, creativity and entertainment.

If we drop Pukki and Dowell for Hugill and Stiepermann, we might trouble a few sides from high set pieces. But if we did decide to do that, we'd be less incisive during open play.

I'm more than happy with the balance we have struck, because it certainly seems to have worked this season.

More than happy to see the kind of football we get now and if we're not effective with attacking crosses, then so be it... but if everyone can see that, why not change things to utilise short corners or low driven corners instead like Barcelona did.

We keep persisting with something that clearing isn't working.  An interesting stat would be how many dangerous counters have come from our corners compared to actual dangerous changes created for us... or maybe I'm just a boring git 🙂.  Taking it to the extreme... would it even be more effective to pass it back to Krul and build again from defence...

 

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7 minutes ago, Gibbo said:

More than happy to see the kind of football we get now and if we're not effective with attacking crosses, then so be it... but if everyone can see that, why not change things to utilise short corners or low driven corners instead like Barcelona did.

We keep persisting with something that clearing isn't working.  An interesting stat would be how many dangerous counters have come from our corners compared to actual dangerous changes created for us... or maybe I'm just a boring git 🙂.  Taking it to the extreme... would it even be more effective to pass it back to Krul and build again from defence...

As opposed to trying to improve our aerial ability against taller teams which is fighting a losing battle, I'd say that approach would be more sensible. 

Unfortunately, a large number of our supporters would just start howling, "why don't they just kick it in the box!?"

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The fact that we've improved so much defensively despite still not being a very big side has been one of the unheralded successes of this season. 

 

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6 hours ago, cambridgeshire canary said:

The number of times we have given players free headers in the box is ridiculous 

 

It was only a matter of time until one of them went in

Uh thats really naive. 

We have one of the best defences in the division. We haven't given a ridiculous amount of free headers in the box, although you might think that anyone touching the ball with their head in the area is dangerous whereas in reality we know exactly what we are doing.

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2 hours ago, Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm Flailing Tube Man said:

As opposed to trying to improve our aerial ability against taller teams which is fighting a losing battle, I'd say that approach would be more sensible. 

Unfortunately, a large number of our supporters would just start howling, "why don't they just kick it in the box!?"

I still remember whenever Wes wanted to take a short corner - universally loved player got stick from all four stands for doing that!

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2 hours ago, Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm Flailing Tube Man said:

As opposed to trying to improve our aerial ability against taller teams which is fighting a losing battle, I'd say that approach would be more sensible. 

Unfortunately, City1st would just start howling, "why don't they just kick it in the box!?"

Just fixed it for you Wacky.

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7 hours ago, Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm Flailing Tube Man said:

The great Barcelona sides of recent years seldom bothered to cross the ball from corners, for example. They knew they were a few inches shorter than the opposition but they were far more technically skilled, so they took most of their corners short and then tried to pass their way into the box.

I do wonder if we'd be better off trying something like this, hell we'd probably be better still going all the way back to Krul and starting again having brought the opposition out from the box a little further!

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