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king canary

Evolution not revolution

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1 hour ago, chicken said:

I agree King Canary. Though I suspect it'll be the core of the squad that doesn't change much rather than the squad itself. It's large at the moment.

GK: Krul, Gunn, McGovern and then several youngsters.
CB: Hanley, Gibson, Zimmermann and Omobamidele with Tomkinson having been involved with the squad and Bushiri and Famewo out on loan.
RB: Aarons, Mumba, Byram.
LB: Giannoulis, McCallum.
CM: Lees-Melou, Sorensen, McLean, Rupp (out of contract).
Wide/AM: Cantwell, Dowell, Placheta, Hernandez, Rashica, Tzolis, Springett, Rowe, Dennis, Josh Martin and possibly Sinani.
STR: Pukki, Hugill, Idah, Sargent.

I suspect we'll see some trimming on the periphery. I'm not sure how we can't. There is no way we can facilitate all of those wide/AM players. You'd have to suspect that some will be loaned out again next season as they are still young. 

Yeah I agree. The obvious area that needs work is central midfield. Outside of that it feels like a more out than in sort of summer.

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9 minutes ago, hogesar said:

Most of our squad is full of either championship winners or proven in alternate country leagues often relative to the championship.

Also worth looking at what the rest of the league looks like.

The Luton v Huddersfield match included starts for Cameron Jerome, Henri Lansbury and Harry Toffolo along with Jordan Rhodes off the bench. I don't think any of them get into our squad let alone starting xi.

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8 minutes ago, king canary said:

Also worth looking at what the rest of the league looks like.

The Luton v Huddersfield match included starts for Cameron Jerome, Henri Lansbury and Harry Toffolo along with Jordan Rhodes off the bench. I don't think any of them get into our squad let alone starting xi.

Yes. I suspect as the recovery from covid improves,  the quality will improve a bit as sides strengthen this summer.

However youre spot on. You have to also note Sinani was a Huddersfield goalscorer in the playoffs. He would likely be 5th or 6th choice here if we had everyone back.

We can't take it for granted and the psychological state of the players is probably our biggest risk but there's absolutely no reason we shouldn't be challenging for top 2.

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18 minutes ago, hogesar said:

Yes. I suspect as the recovery from covid improves,  the quality will improve a bit as sides strengthen this summer.

However youre spot on. You have to also note Sinani was a Huddersfield goalscorer in the playoffs. He would likely be 5th or 6th choice here if we had everyone back.

We can't take it for granted and the psychological state of the players is probably our biggest risk but there's absolutely no reason we shouldn't be challenging for top 2.

Well considering the season he's had for Huddersfield at the top end of the Championship, these  players ahead of Sinani (all 4 or 5 of them must be bloody good!). I wonder who they are cos I don't see them.

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6 minutes ago, yellowrider120 said:

Well considering the season he's had for Huddersfield at the top end of the Championship, these  players ahead of Sinani (all 4 or 5 of them must be bloody good!). I wonder who they are cos I don't see them.

Sinani has scored 7 goals and got 3 assists in the championship. In a really poor championship by its own standards due to the lack of finance in that division arising from covid. He has done well but the problem is everyone judging our players at Prem standard and for some reason think that relates to the championship. The fact we can win the championship title at a canter and then finish bottom shows the disparity between the two leagues and is further evidenced by the likes of Luton making the playoffs with Jerome as their talisman heading into them.

Tzolis got 10 goals and 4 assists for PAOK before joining us, including goals in the champions league.

Cantwell got 6 goals 6 assists in the championship last time.

Dowell got 5 goals and an assist in less than half the games Sinani has played this season.

Obviously Pukki is miles ahead of him if thinking as a forward.

Onel got 8 goals and 9 assists last time he played a full season for us in the champs.

Then you've got Rashica who having seen them both play can comfortably say Rashica will have a much stronger career than Sinani.

Sargent got 5 goals and 2 assists in a struggling Bundesliga side and at only 20 years old. 

Heck, Idah got 3 goals and an assist with only one start and a handful of sub appearances in the championship.

So yeah, from what I've seen Sinani doesn't get in our side.

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44 minutes ago, hogesar said:

We can't take it for granted and the psychological state of the players is probably our biggest risk but there's absolutely no reason we shouldn't be challenging for top 2.

Yeah this is the key part. Not saying we'll walk the league but fundamentally if we struggle it will be as much about the mental side of things than about the quality level of the players.

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8 hours ago, king canary said:

I keep seeing this idea that the squad needs tearing down, total rebuild etc etc. I'm thinking the exact opposite at this point.

While our net spend has been (comparatively) low over the Webber era one of the hallmarks of his time here has been high levels of player churn.

Look at the sheer number of players who we've signed for the first team over his time (and these only include players signed for the first team)...

17/18- Hanley, Franke, Hernandez, Steipermann, Srebeny, Husband, Vrancic, Zimmerman, Watkins, Trybull, Gunn, Reed, Leitner- 13 total signings.

18/19- Marshall, Buendia, McLean, Passlack, Heise, Krul, Pukki, Rhodes- 8 total signings

19/20- Fahrmann, Byram, Amadou, Rupp, Drmic, Duda, Roberts- 7 total signings

20/21- Hugill, Placheta, Gibson, Giannoulis, Dowell, Sorenson, Skipp, Quintilla- 8 total signings

21/22- Rashica, Tzolis, Sargent, Gunn, Kabak, PLM, Normann, Williams, Gilmour- 9 total signings

So 45 players across 5 seasons, with at least 7 new signings coming in each season. So almost every season we're adding large numbers of new players to the squad.

This season we somewhat know what we've got- lots of players who are good enough for the top of the Championship but not for the Premier League. We need to look to find gems who can not only help this season but may also have the potential to step up if we go back up in key areas. We're not going to find 8 or 9 of those players in one summer in the Championship and it would be foolish to try. We'd be much better suited to helping our core of Championship players by adding two or three quality new additions rather than another scattergun window. Don't throw the baby (in this case players like McLean, Gibson, Dowell) out with the bathwater.

I would agree but I largely think it will be dictated by player attitude to the relegation. We know we are losing the 4 loans. I can see a scenario where Rashica puts in a transfer request. Tzolis and Gianoulis are reportedly homesick and probably want to leave. Lees-meleu might fancy going back to the comfort blanket of ligue 1. Cantwell we know isn’t happy. Rupp hasn’t signed a contract.

It really depends on the attitude. If the majority of who I listed, make the decision to stay and commit wholeheartedly to the task then there is a really good Championship squad there. If they don’t want to stay then we are going to have to carve them out because the Championship isn’t the place for sulking half-a**e egos. 

In my opinion Smith could be facing a tougher job than Farke ever did.

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Looking at the championship this season it has been very weak. Looking at some of the players playing in the playoffs you would have to say it's weaker than before. My main concern is more to do with our players matching with our manager. Pukki will probably be the best striker in the division despite his age but we now don't have the players or to my mind the manager to suit his style of football. Smith will not be playing Farke ball and without Buendia could we. I can see Smith wanting to move a number of players on to mold his own squad and style of play. The problem with that is you need people to want to buy them or take on their wages. We will take a hit on all this season's signings if we can move them at all. I am also not sure who from the promotion squad we could move. I think Aaron's but for far  less than a year ago. Pukki but at his age we wouldn't get much and please god keep him and make it work. Krul, again age. Hanley but better to keep. I'm struggling to see who we can move to make room and fund any Smith players. Will he stand for another window with no signings. My very long winded point is Smith will need to sign players to suit his way of playing but if we can't move players on can we do that with a big squad already. 

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17 hours ago, Terminally Yellow said:

See that's interesting because I think Byram and Mumba is fine. I also think Sorenson could double up in defence, so provided we keep Hanley, Omo, Gibson, I would be tempted to bring in the young American lad who has been training with the first team; Tomkinson is it? Not sure I've got that right. Dimi and McCallum is probably a capable left flank too.

For me we need at least three midfielders (one defensive, one creative, one more box to box) and I would be inclined to consider a wide player too, given how poorly ours have performed, particularly one with pace. I wouldn't be surprised to see Onel Hernandez kept around next season. 

Famewo is coming back after a good season at Charlton. He would be in the mix for CB too.

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46 minutes ago, hertfordyellow said:

Famewo is coming back after a good season at Charlton. He would be in the mix for CB too.

I might be wrong; don't Charlton have an option?

I remember thinking at the time it was bizarre because I thought he was a good prospect. 

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30 minutes ago, Terminally Yellow said:

I might be wrong; don't Charlton have an option?

I remember thinking at the time it was bizarre because I thought he was a good prospect. 

I don’t know. I know potentially Sinani has an option but not read one for Famewo. I would much rather have him in the mix than buy someone just to fill options at CB

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Like it or not we need some time in mid championship to clear out the show pony playing staff, seek out a manager with actual grit, see the current owners out of the door (or wait for the grim reaper if need be) and lower the expectations of a deluded happy clappy Delia obsessed fanbase.

 

Norwich City deoesn't BELONG in the PL.... it belongs where our squad fits and despite recent promotions it hasn't been good enough for years.

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Made a similar post a little while back and completely agree still.

Some targeted quality signings needed as there’s plenty of depth in the squad to deal with the championship with those additions.

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I've said it before: Webber is an architect of change. That's previously been a good thing, when we had lots of things that needed changing. But he arguably changed far too much this season, and it's unlikely he'll diverge from his formula this summer.

It's no secret that many of us would have preferred less change after the success of last season. There is no right or wrong in this other than observing that what we ended up doing resulted in failure, so any hypothetical alternative might seem more attractive. 

There's a reasonable argument that we actually need a fair bit of change this window: to undo some of the damage done last summer. I think some of the optimists might be sadly disappointed in the abilities of our three record signings.

What we definitely do need is genuine quality; something that Webber has found more difficult to achieve other than with his scattergun approach. Is it better to sign 10 players for £1m each or 1 player for £10m? In the past, some of those bargains have turned out to be Buendia and Pukki while those 'tanks' and 'bazookas' are more like Naismith and RVW.

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5 minutes ago, Petriix said:

I've said it before: Webber is an architect of change. That's previously been a good thing, when we had lots of things that needed changing. But he arguably changed far too much this season, and it's unlikely he'll diverge from his formula this summer.

It's no secret that many of us would have preferred less change after the success of last season. There is no right or wrong in this other than observing that what we ended up doing resulted in failure, so any hypothetical alternative might seem more attractive. 

There's a reasonable argument that we actually need a fair bit of change this window: to undo some of the damage done last summer. I think some of the optimists might be sadly disappointed in the abilities of our three record signings.

What we definitely do need is genuine quality; something that Webber has found more difficult to achieve other than with his scattergun approach. Is it better to sign 10 players for £1m each or 1 player for £10m? In the past, some of those bargains have turned out to be Buendia and Pukki while those 'tanks' and 'bazookas' are more like Naismith and RVW.

Not sure about this, Smith seems to be talking about summer business a lot and I get the feeling he’s going to be a lot more involved than Farke potentially was. Smiths already said we won’t be completely overhauling the squad. 

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Posted (edited)
21 hours ago, king canary said:

I keep seeing this idea that the squad needs tearing down, total rebuild etc etc. I'm thinking the exact opposite at this point.

While our net spend has been (comparatively) low over the Webber era one of the hallmarks of his time here has been high levels of player churn.

Look at the sheer number of players who we've signed for the first team over his time (and these only include players signed for the first team)...

17/18- Hanley, Franke, Hernandez, Steipermann, Srebeny, Husband, Vrancic, Zimmerman, Watkins, Trybull, Gunn, Reed, Leitner- 13 total signings.

18/19- Marshall, Buendia, McLean, Passlack, Heise, Krul, Pukki, Rhodes- 8 total signings

19/20- Fahrmann, Byram, Amadou, Rupp, Drmic, Duda, Roberts- 7 total signings

20/21- Hugill, Placheta, Gibson, Giannoulis, Dowell, Sorenson, Skipp, Quintilla- 8 total signings

21/22- Rashica, Tzolis, Sargent, Gunn, Kabak, PLM, Normann, Williams, Gilmour- 9 total signings

So 45 players across 5 seasons, with at least 7 new signings coming in each season. So almost every season we're adding large numbers of new players to the squad.

This season we somewhat know what we've got- lots of players who are good enough for the top of the Championship but not for the Premier League. We need to look to find gems who can not only help this season but may also have the potential to step up if we go back up in key areas. We're not going to find 8 or 9 of those players in one summer in the Championship and it would be foolish to try. We'd be much better suited to helping our core of Championship players by adding two or three quality new additions rather than another scattergun window. Don't throw the baby (in this case players like McLean, Gibson, Dowell) out with the bathwater.

Totally agree with this.

I think Smith made a reference to needing a creative spark to make the difference and I think he's right there. I'm sure I'm not the only one who sees the irony of him having got Buendia to AV only to lose his job and move to the club Buendia came from to lament the absence of a Buendia. 

Only thing I'd add is that it's probably worth the club being a bit more generous on spending than needed this transfer window, with a view to building a championship-winning squad that has the potential to evolve into a squad that's competitive in the Premier league over the coming season without too much change at the end of this coming season. 

What we really don't want is big changes immediately after a promotion. Or maybe even ever, arguably. 

Edited by littleyellowbirdie
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49 minutes ago, Nora's Ghost said:

Like it or not we need some time in mid championship to clear out the show pony playing staff, seek out a manager with actual grit, see the current owners out of the door (or wait for the grim reaper if need be) and lower the expectations of a deluded happy clappy Delia obsessed fanbase.

 

Norwich City deoesn't BELONG in the PL.... it belongs where our squad fits and despite recent promotions it hasn't been good enough for years.

This is a very weird statement. I always understood the 'happy clappers' were the people like myself who would love us to do better, but accept it's a big ask and appreciate what we have. I would have said it's the people who want to sack the board who need to have a think about their expectations. 

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I think other than a strong CM and probably a Cantwell-type replacement, our other signings will be dictated only by who we lose.

We know we won’t be able to invest in these two areas without some sales (let’s not do a loan-to-not-buy in such key spots again either please), so who will make way? Previously thought it would’ve been Aarons but I’m honestly not sure who’d buy him and pay what we want, this season must’ve damaged his value. 

So unfortunately we don’t have the luxury of being able to make 1 or 2 huge sales this time round to fund multiple signings. There aren’t really any golden geese.

From this point of view it would seem plausible then that we see more players sold to fund the reinvestment. Could see Rashica, Giannoulis, Rupp, Hugill, Placheta, Zimmerman, Sorensen all making way. Of course we’d then need some further signings to replace some of these guys as well but as @chicken says - we already have a large squad.

I’d also be surprised if Webber tried in the first instance to keep the group together to be honest. Some new faces would be most welcome in turning around the mentality and mood of the team, ditto with getting rid of some of them too. We’ve got to flush out as much of that negativity as we can and does keeping them all together for the most part do that?

So whilst I agree with the OP on paper the team looks good, and there are only a couple of notable holes for a serious push in the champs - I don’t think it’ll necessarily translate to a successful team without some notable changes.

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1 hour ago, Nora's Ghost said:

Like it or not we need some time in mid championship to clear out the show pony playing staff, seek out a manager with actual grit, see the current owners out of the door (or wait for the grim reaper if need be) and lower the expectations of a deluded happy clappy Delia obsessed fanbase.

 

Norwich City deoesn't BELONG in the PL.... it belongs where our squad fits and despite recent promotions it hasn't been good enough for years.

Don't worry everyone, this guys definitely a Norwich fan.

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1 hour ago, littleyellowbirdie said:

This is a very weird statement. I always understood the 'happy clappers' were the people like myself who would love us to do better, but accept it's a big ask and appreciate what we have. I would have said it's the people who want to sack the board who need to have a think about their expectations. 

A surgeon will tell you that you sometimes have to cut things out in order to cure the whole.

 

Norwich City needs drastic surgery otherwise it will never get better.

 

 

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22 hours ago, king canary said:

I think you'd struggle to back that up.

Only Rashica and Gunn of the lads we bought last summer has suggested they’re good enough for the Championship.   I’d say we would not have reached the playoffs last season without Buendia and Skipp, we may not even have been top half, they were that influential!     We also had a proven style of play last season, one that has now disappeared.    All opinions but I think these are reasonable arguments we may not be good enough!    

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2 minutes ago, ged in the onion bag said:

Only Rashica and Gunn of the lads we bought last summer has suggested they’re good enough for the Championship.   I’d say we would not have reached the playoffs last season without Buendia and Skipp, we may not even have been top half, they were that influential!     We also had a proven style of play last season, one that has now disappeared.    All opinions but I think these are reasonable arguments we may not be good enough!    

Oh come on. The gulf in class to the championship is massive that’s why Luton are in the playoffs. Sargent for one looks more than good enough for the Championship.

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1 hour ago, Hank shoots Skyler said:

I think other than a strong CM and probably a Cantwell-type replacement, our other signings will be dictated only by who we lose.

We know we won’t be able to invest in these two areas without some sales (let’s not do a loan-to-not-buy in such key spots again either please), so who will make way? Previously thought it would’ve been Aarons but I’m honestly not sure who’d buy him and pay what we want, this season must’ve damaged his value. 

So unfortunately we don’t have the luxury of being able to make 1 or 2 huge sales this time round to fund multiple signings. There aren’t really any golden geese.

From this point of view it would seem plausible then that we see more players sold to fund the reinvestment. Could see Rashica, Giannoulis, Rupp, Hugill, Placheta, Zimmerman, Sorensen all making way. Of course we’d then need some further signings to replace some of these guys as well but as @chicken says - we already have a large squad.

I’d also be surprised if Webber tried in the first instance to keep the group together to be honest. Some new faces would be most welcome in turning around the mentality and mood of the team, ditto with getting rid of some of them too. We’ve got to flush out as much of that negativity as we can and does keeping them all together for the most part do that?

So whilst I agree with the OP on paper the team looks good, and there are only a couple of notable holes for a serious push in the champs - I don’t think it’ll necessarily translate to a successful team without some notable changes.

Zimmermann is a funny one. From what I understand he is super humble, a very hard worker and on pretty low wages. If he is happy to be part of the squad, I wouldn't move him on. At least not yet. Obviously if an offer came in then perhaps. He has been said to be good for the younger players and we know he can do a job for us even if he is no longer one of the best two CB's we have. He's not egotistical.

The others you mention will be interesting. Giannoulis will mainly be about whether he wants to be playing at Championship level. He'll be annoyed about lack of game time, and that's fair. Rupp is out of contract and we have seen reports suggesting that conversations between him and Webber haven't occurred for some time on that front. At 31, 32 in Jan 23, it is possible he could be allowed to leave to create space for additions or youngsters to come through.

Rashica is all about what he will want, to go and return to a higher level or stay and help us. Hugill will be game time again. Placheta will probably be loaned I should think. They wanted to at the start of this season. Sorensen... well, if Rupp isn't offered a new contract it leaves us with just Lees-Melou, Sorensen and McLean as recognised midfielders. I can't see them letting Sorensen go unless they are expecting several players incoming in that position.

As others have said we do need to strengthen the DM department even with Sorensen. I think CM could be the area we focus on this summer.

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I think assuming our current squad can compete in the championship next year is a big mistake. Our performance levels are ridiculously low regardless of how well the apparent FIFA2022 stats may say they are.

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4 minutes ago, Monty13 said:

Oh come on. The gulf in class to the championship is massive that’s why Luton are in the playoffs. Sargent for one looks more than good enough for the Championship.

I still think some of the others may do a Rupp/Vrancic/Hernandez/Stiepermann/Leitner and look better in their 2nd season of English football.

The other thing the Championship gives players is time. With more games there is more opportunity for game time and development. Although it is more a hope, I would really like to see Tzolis show what he was signed for and be gently introduced and guided to solid contributions. 

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27 minutes ago, Monty13 said:

Oh come on. The gulf in class to the championship is massive that’s why Luton are in the playoffs. Sargent for one looks more than good enough for the Championship.

Does he?    I suspect we may well find out, personally think he will give us 100% effort but he still won't trap a bag of cement!     There's plenty of our fans on here lazily believing that we are dropping down to a poor league.   Well Sheffield United aren't finding it that easy are they?   Yes the gulf in class between the two leagues is massive and we got nowhere near bridging it.   We are now inferior by some distance not only in squad, in confidence and in a lack of playing style!.    All I am doing is giving my opinion, so oh come on what.    

So lets say this pans out  without major overhaul and Sargent and McLean and Lees-Melou do well and we get promoted how do we then bridge this 'gulf in class' again?     Can absolutely assure you that Sargent will never (trust me, never) be a Premier League star!.  There are fundamental reasons he won't, ones which for the life of me I can't believe the scouts didn't pick up on!     So what is the point of persevering with him (and others in the similar situation)!

Be interested to know how you think we will finally bridge this massive gulf?       

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59 minutes ago, ged in the onion bag said:

Does he?    I suspect we may well find out, personally think he will give us 100% effort but he still won't trap a bag of cement!     There's plenty of our fans on here lazily believing that we are dropping down to a poor league.   Well Sheffield United aren't finding it that easy are they?   Yes the gulf in class between the two leagues is massive and we got nowhere near bridging it.   We are now inferior by some distance not only in squad, in confidence and in a lack of playing style!.    All I am doing is giving my opinion, so oh come on what.    

So lets say this pans out  without major overhaul and Sargent and McLean and Lees-Melou do well and we get promoted how do we then bridge this 'gulf in class' again?     Can absolutely assure you that Sargent will never (trust me, never) be a Premier League star!.  There are fundamental reasons he won't, ones which for the life of me I can't believe the scouts didn't pick up on!     So what is the point of persevering with him (and others in the similar situation)!

Be interested to know how you think we will finally bridge this massive gulf?       

I think it’s a much poorer league technically, I don’t think it’s an easy league because it requires a lot of mental resilience, something we currently lack.

We have a lot of players though that are individually easily capable of being top 6 performers. it just depends how we perform as a team.

We bridge it by buying fewer higher quality players imo rather than the scattergun approach previously. We have plenty of good enough players, we need that smattering of good ones to elevate us.

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9 minutes ago, Monty13 said:

I think it’s a much poorer league technically, I don’t think it’s an easy league because it requires a lot of mental resilience, something we currently lack.

We have a lot of players though that are individually easily capable of being top 6 performers. it just depends how we perform as a team.

We bridge it by buying fewer higher quality players imo rather than the scattergun approach previously. We have plenty of good enough players, we need that smattering of good ones to elevate us.

This is where i could reply 'Oh come on!'.....   That doesn't make sense to me, lots of top 6 performers (don't believe we have) but OK, massive gulf between leagues and then buying only a few quality players to bridge this massive gulf.   Are you expecting few injuries next time also.    Who are these 'plenty of good enough players' (assume your referring to EPL level) in which case I'm intrigued!    Bear in mind Pukki will be about 34 next year and we will likely lose Aarons and poss Rashica!    Add to that like I said, we don't have a playing style at the moment, not like we had honed the past two promotions.    

Its either a massive gulf and we need a lot of change and experience in the group before promotion or we ain't bridging it with a few high quality players for one, secondly, say the budget is £60m, we ain't buying more than 3 high quality players so what about injuries.... it really is fanciful if fans (and even the club) think we can get off this roundabout by pursuing promotion next season.    We are just chasing our tail!

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26 minutes ago, ged in the onion bag said:

This is where i could reply 'Oh come on!'.....   That doesn't make sense to me, lots of top 6 performers (don't believe we have) but OK, massive gulf between leagues and then buying only a few quality players to bridge this massive gulf.   Are you expecting few injuries next time also.    Who are these 'plenty of good enough players' (assume your referring to EPL level) in which case I'm intrigued!    Bear in mind Pukki will be about 34 next year and we will likely lose Aarons and poss Rashica!    Add to that like I said, we don't have a playing style at the moment, not like we had honed the past two promotions.    

Its either a massive gulf and we need a lot of change and experience in the group before promotion or we ain't bridging it with a few high quality players for one, secondly, say the budget is £60m, we ain't buying more than 3 high quality players so what about injuries.... it really is fanciful if fans (and even the club) think we can get off this roundabout by pursuing promotion next season.    We are just chasing our tail!

The only way we go by not getting promoted is backwards, at least in the short term. I’m amazed any supporters don’t see that.

Theres only 11 players on the pitch at any time and you need only a handful of weapons capable of scoring and creating goals. Spreading the money across two summers on another load of players makes no sense. We get two summers if we are promoted, so yes to me buying circa 3 quality players in each makes way more sense.

We need a squad capable of challenging for 17th, only way we do that is by spending money incredibly wisely IMO. McClean is the perfect example. Is he good PL player? No not at all (sorry Kenny). But when you need 5-6 central midfielders in the squad is he good enough that you’re not going to be able realistically significantly upgrade him without wasting money? Yes, good enough.

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4 hours ago, chicken said:

Zimmermann is a funny one. From what I understand he is super humble, a very hard worker and on pretty low wages. If he is happy to be part of the squad, I wouldn't move him on. At least not yet. Obviously if an offer came in then perhaps. He has been said to be good for the younger players and we know he can do a job for us even if he is no longer one of the best two CB's we have. He's not egotistical.

The others you mention will be interesting. Giannoulis will mainly be about whether he wants to be playing at Championship level. He'll be annoyed about lack of game time, and that's fair. Rupp is out of contract and we have seen reports suggesting that conversations between him and Webber haven't occurred for some time on that front. At 31, 32 in Jan 23, it is possible he could be allowed to leave to create space for additions or youngsters to come through.

Rashica is all about what he will want, to go and return to a higher level or stay and help us. Hugill will be game time again. Placheta will probably be loaned I should think. They wanted to at the start of this season. Sorensen... well, if Rupp isn't offered a new contract it leaves us with just Lees-Melou, Sorensen and McLean as recognised midfielders. I can't see them letting Sorensen go unless they are expecting several players incoming in that position.

As others have said we do need to strengthen the DM department even with Sorensen. I think CM could be the area we focus on this summer.

Zimmerman is a really good case in point. There isn't much point in letting a player who is happy being a backup and doesn't cost much and who won't raise much of a fee go, unless we trust one of the youngsters to step up, as it creates another hole to fill. 

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