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Team Selection

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Worthy''s getting it all wrong. Holt on the right wing, for goodness sake?! Holt should be dropped from the team and put on the subs bench.

It''s also high time we get some of these signings back in. Helveg and Jonson need to be given another chance, maybe even placing Jonson up front. He has an eye for a goal, which we lack so put him up there.

Let''s see Doherty in defence! He was bought as a defender, so let''s play him there. And why isn''t McVeigh a regular on the right? He has played there now twice, and both times played very impressively. His stint as a Northern Island (or is it Republic?) sub also impressed me.

Also, the diamond does need to go. Yes, it''s given us some draws, but doesn''t really give us alot of attacking options. It also makes the counter attack (something we''re pretty good at) very difficult. Safri and Francis in the center of midfield is defensive enough, we don''t need to worry about a diamond.

I''d like to see this formation played. Your bog standard 4-4-2;

GK: Greeno
DR: Helveg
DL: Drury
DC: Charlton
DC: Doherty
MR: McVeigh
ML: Bentley
MC: Francis
MC: Safri
FC: Jonson/Jarvis
FC: Huckerby

Subs: Ward, Fleming, Holt, McKenzie, Jonson/Jarvis (whoever doesn''t play)

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Like the idea of Jonson up front. I too think we should give Helveg and Jonson a decent run, they have loads of international experience and should learn quickly to get used to the Premiership. Maybe even try Helveg in midfield- was at the Liverpool game and thought that the midfield needed changing badly.
so how about:






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Defintiely should be changes, but that''s why I''m not wallowing in doom and gloom at the moment. There are still plenty of points to win. Even if we are still down in the bottom three at Xmas (which is likely to be fair) getting on a run of wins can be enough to inch your way out of the relegation zone like Pompey did. We''ve lost to Man Utd (a) Arsenal (h) and Liverpool (h). For a team in our position that''s hardly disastrous.

Maybe I''m being overly optimistic but I really do believe we have a number of decent options we can try. Personally I see no reason why Leon can''t be given a go up front with Hucks (and he should get a run of games, not a one-off). But if not, Jonson could do a job there, or even Svenny. He had a bad day at Man Utd but that''s no reason to give up on him (Worthy didn''t give up on Holt when he played so poorly against Man Utd and Newcastle- and consequently he has improved over the last few games even if he isn''t comfortable in his current role) and I would fancy him to stick chances away much more than Doherty.

Perhaps move Hucks to the left (as mentioned above) to play Leon upfront with someone else (even the Doc). Jonson has so much potential that given a run of games I''m sure he will come good either on the right wing or upfront. Bentley has done very well considering that for all the hype around him, he''s still an inexperienced youngster (great to see that he always wants the ball and is prepared to have a go even if it didn''t work out the last time he had the ball) and he will only get better. Francis playing in the centre of midfield was immense in the first few games and he can recapture that form if played in the right postion. Safri has looked decent and could really use his passing skills to great effect if he was receiving the ball higher up the pitch, playing in a traditional central midfield role. Macca is always likely to offer something wherever you play him, or just coming off the bench. Mullers is close to fitness and has that extra bit of quality to create chances at this level (how many times did he change the course of a game last sesaon coming off the bench?!). Even the likes of Jarvis and Hendo could provide something different coming off the bench if given the chance.

It''s going to be a long, tough season like we always knew it would be. But we have lots of options and as far as I''m concerned we''ve got to give it a go. A load of draws will not keep us up, but with three points for a win you can soon make up ground on other teams (even if it means losing two and winning one, rather than drawing three in a row). I agree with the Man in the Stands column. If we are going to go down (I''m in no way saying we have no chance of staying up, but we have to accept that is the most likely outcome for this season with the money we have to spend this time around) then at least go down playing attacking football. AND the key point is that by playing attacking football, you always will be in with a chance of getting three points, which WILL give us a chance of avoiding the drop.

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