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SuperWesIrishWizard

FAO: Indy_Bones + Barclayend Boy

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Well especially Indy_Bones, I was just wondering if you had seen enough this season, including Ricardo Fullers hatrick the other day (and Higginbothams successful move to the Premiership), along with Stoke Citys performance this year to admit that I was right in what I said in the post I have linked to below?

http://www.pinkun.com/cs/forums/1/978993/ShowPost.aspx#978993

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[quote user="ryank"]

Well especially Indy_Bones, I was just wondering if you had seen enough this season, including Ricardo Fullers hatrick the other day (and Higginbothams successful move to the Premiership), along with Stoke Citys performance this year to admit that I was right in what I said in the post I have linked to below?

http://www.pinkun.com/cs/forums/1/978993/ShowPost.aspx#978993

[/quote]

Ok, first of all let me state that I can hardly argue with the league standings. Stoke are up in 4th and no amount of debate from me can possibly change this fact.

Out of the three Stoke players I said I''d have here, we''ve signed one of them, another has signed perm for them (Diao), and Pericard is clearly out of favour.

I admitted that Lawrence was a good player, but still feel that an "on-form" Chadwick or Croft are easily his equal if not better.

I clearly stated our need for a good centre half, and suggested Gravgaard, we don''t appear to have made any moves for him, but since Roeder''s arrival, Taylor came in, and looked better than Matteo or Higginbotham EVER have.

Apart from Derby and Reading, Sunderland have the worst defensive record in the prem, and seeing as how Higginbotham has played in 14 out of their 18 games, he surely has to be partly responsible for this. Yes, the Prem is a higher level, but so far he''s done nothing to show that he''s worthy of being played at that level. Also, Stoke''s defence has hardly looked top class, they''ve only conceded 4 less than we have, hardly an indicator of strong defensive ability.

I''m still not a massive fan of Fuller, his good performances in his last two games make his goals scored tally seem far better on paper than it arguably is. Up until those two games, he''d managed 6 goals, not exactly any better than Cureton is it? And again, if he''s so good, where''s the premiership interest? Sunderland paid £6 million for Kenwyne Jones, and Fuller is likely to cost a quarter of that, so why no Prem move?

You also need to be aware of the huge impact Stoke''s loanees have had on their fortunes. Shawcross and Cort have scored a third of the total goals - mainly from corners. Both are players I rate as being very good young defenders, so something has to be wrong if Stoke are struggling defensively with these two and the likes of your mates Matteo et al.

Given the difference we''ve seen in the short time Roeder has been in charge, I can still maintain my belief that we have a better squad and generally better players overall, it would appear that a lot of our early poor performance was due to the lack of faith/ability of the manager (Grant), and many players are now performing far better. If we''d done this from the first day of the season, we''d have been up there with Stoke.

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