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Rudolph Hucker

IS IT TIME TO SHUFFLE THE PACK?

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I have every confidence in Grant but as a piece of speculation I wonder if it might be time to shuffle the pack?

We have been relentless but since Colchester have been grinding the results and it has taken its toll. It is tough to lead and to be there for others to take a shot at. Charlton and Leeds have struggled in their turn.

We do not function in the current format without Holt and even with him Brentford frustrated us. It might be that a week long break rejuvenates us but we look ready for a slip up. I had the fear today there would be a late sting in the tail for us but credit to the players for handling it well.

Forster is on top of his game, so is Doc but I would like to see Whitbread given a game so perhaps Nelson deserves a rest.

The full backs are revitalised enough.

Russell is essential and strong. Korey had a good game today and played strong to the end but he is 18 so would benefit from a rest. I would like to see us revert to 4-4-2 and bring in Hughes and McNamee. This would mean benching Wes who has no protection without Holt.

Up front I''d start with Martin (who proved today he works very hard for the team) plus one of Oli or Cody.

This is a tough game and we need refreshing. I would like to see us change things, give some squad players a chance, review it and come back refreshed next game with options.

I think Lambert has a tough decision this week. No doubt he will be influenced by the training but he might just break up a winning team.

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I think we have to come up with something more solid for Millwall, and benching Wes could maybe be the answer.I think Cody for his battling and energy.We''ll really miss Holt for this one,

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We do need a plan B as the diamond formation will not work all the time but I think most teams would look a little jaded after playing 3 in a week.

I am not worried, we didn''t play well today and the Walsall game was tough but there is no need to panic over two games. In our last 3 games we have scored 9 goals and let in 2, not the form to be worried about

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I think the diamond is a solid formation, especially away from home. Three centre mids playing narrow is more robust than the two that would be there if we went 4-4-2.They are going through a slow period at the minute, especially without Grant, but they are still picking up results and setting new records. I think Cody should start again next week, his pace should be effective away from home.

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I think there is a combination of tiredness and complacency creeping into our game. I think Millwall will be a tough test but I''d be confident enough to go with what we''ve got. Maybe for a home game we can afford to rest players because the crowd will help lift those that come in. I would like to see more of Macnamee but in the current set up it''s hard to see where he will fit in. Hughes would be the more natural replacement for Korey (who I agree needs a rest) but I wouldn''t mind seeing a 4-4-2 at some point to give the fringe players a chance.

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Not at all. Players are tired because they''ve just had a 3 game week where they played half a game with 10 men and another on a bog of a pitch which is energy sapping. we''ve now got a weeks rest ahead of us so the boys will be fine. Also I think it would be silly to change a formation that has been so succesful especially as we are playing Millwall next its not like we''re going to Old Trafford or the Emirates.

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I wasn''t at todays game and we obviously struggled but we did win, why the hell do want to change a formation that has produced 44 points from 48. It is just tinkering for tinkering sake.As for Wes yes he sounds like he was anon today, he also won us the game at Walsall with 2 assists which I was at. I guarentee Kenny Jackett would slip you a few thousand to be Norwich manager and drop Wes, I have never heard something so absurd in my life.Today was ONE game and if there was one thing you can guarentee with football fans is that will overreact to the last performance and not think about the long term.

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[quote user="RUDOLPH HUCKER"]I have every confidence in Grant but as a piece of speculation I wonder if it might be time to shuffle the pack? We have been relentless but since Colchester have been grinding the results and it has taken its toll. It is tough to lead and to be there for others to take a shot at. Charlton and Leeds have struggled in their turn. We do not function in the current format without Holt and even with him Brentford frustrated us. It might be that a week long break rejuvenates us but we look ready for a slip up. I had the fear today there would be a late sting in the tail for us but credit to the players for handling it well. Forster is on top of his game, so is Doc but I would like to see Whitbread given a game so perhaps Nelson deserves a rest. The full backs are revitalised enough. Russell is essential and strong. Korey had a good game today and played strong to the end but he is 18 so would benefit from a rest. I would like to see us revert to 4-4-2 and bring in Hughes and McNamee. This would mean benching Wes who has no protection without Holt. Up front I''d start with Martin (who proved today he works very hard for the team) plus one of Oli or Cody. This is a tough game and we need refreshing. I would like to see us change things, give some squad players a chance, review it and come back refreshed next game with options. I think Lambert has a tough decision this week. No doubt he will be influenced by the training but he might just break up a winning team.[/quote]

I agree with all your points rudolph and in the last few games we have struggled a bit to keep on top.

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I don''t think we should be getting worried about the performances at all.  In this league you can not play free flowing, attractive, passing football every week because the teams simply won''t let you.  You have to grind out results and win dirty in this league at times if your going to have any chance of going up.  However I agree that some players like Smith (although he''s playing really well and was our best player today.) do need a rest, and also players like Nelson and Hoolahan.  But do you really think an away game agaisnt Millwall is the best time to shuffle the pack? In my opinion this would be plain stupid and if we do this, we should do it when we are at home agaisnt a mid table team who have nothing to play for, like Southend on the 23rd.

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But isn''t it better to change procatively rather than reactively? We have had to do this last three games and only just won each.

It is commendable we did so but the signs are there for all to see, like Hartlepool''s goal.

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it is exactly the right time to shuffle the pack and certainly agree that this post is now perfectly timed.

Today we had a new fullback and striker, who both obviously did very well... however it was a game where if you were an opponenet and wathced a tape of it you can see how to stop our current threat

mcnamee should have come on today, we do need to blood in a few others and sure lambert is aware of that... millwall will be a tough game and anythnig there is a bonus... but certainly today we shoudl that when hoolahoop plays we do accomodate

Felt today and for much of the walsall game we were in-effective... yes it is without grant holt and we are winning but we do need alternatives and be able to change the game

so for me it is time to shuffle, maybe not the formation but personnel yes

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Agreed Rudolph!. The main area of concern is the centre back pairing and is very much a disaster waiting to happen. Doc and Nelson have looked abject & shaky in their last two performances which hence creates the problem of Rusty dropping deeper to compensate for them plus the rest of the diamond also dropping deeper which starves the forwards of service. Nelson had a couple of good games at Colchester away & Brentford last week but was at fault for the goal against Walsall and again was poor today, Whitbread is the best CB we currently have at the club IMO and should start with the Doc. Another position that I also feel could be strengthened is Hughes for Lappin (I await the backlash!), with his penetrating runs and passing ability feels he offers more to the team, Lappin has also looked particularly jaded in the last two games and been poor.

As regards changing the diamond formation I would certainly start with this, but with the personel below it is easy to change to a team which again is very capable

                        GK - Forster

RB - R Martin CB - Doc CB - Whitbread LB - Rose

                        DM  - Rusty

RM - Smith                                 LM - Hughes

                        AM - Wes

CF- C Martin                    CF - Johnson

 

4-4-2

                        GK - Forster

RB - R Martin CB - Doc CB - Whitbread  LB - Rose

RM - Smith CM - Russell CM - Hughes LM - MacNamee

      CF - C Martin CF - Johnson/Hoolahan

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I thought we looked most dangerous today down the flanks, infact our full backs were the difference when they got forward in the first half.

Without a target in Holt we had no out ball so 442 would give us some width to get behind defences.

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[quote user="RUDOLPH HUCKER"]BTW I am only posing a question and not denegrating any of our players or Lambert''s decision. It would not surprise me if Lambert made some changes.[/quote]

It wouldn''t suprise me if he made some changes either, but just not away to Millwall.  If he made changes then the way that we have been playing, tactics wise, for most of the season is completely wiped out and it would take a bit of getting used to, and that wouldn''t be helped by the fact that we would have a few players who have never really played with each other in a proper game before.

Just to show you, if we rested Smith and Hoolahan, our midfield would look like this in a flat midfield four. Hughes Russel Lappin McNamee.  That is toatlly different to what we have been playing and it would take a little bit of getting used to for the whole team and not just the midfielders.  And we don''t wont to be getting used to a new system away to Millwall do we?

Do you get what I mean?

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[quote user="Gazza"]

Agreed Rudolph!. The main area of concern is the centre back pairing and is very much a disaster waiting to happen. Doc and Nelson have looked abject & shaky in their last two performances which hence creates the problem of Rusty dropping deeper to compensate for them plus the rest of the diamond also dropping deeper which starves the forwards of service. Nelson had a couple of good games at Colchester away & Brentford last week but was at fault for the goal against Walsall and again was poor today, Whitbread is the best CB we currently have at the club IMO and should start with the Doc. Another position that I also feel could be strengthened is Hughes for Lappin (I await the backlash!), with his penetrating runs and passing ability feels he offers more to the team, Lappin has also looked particularly jaded in the last two games and been poor.

As regards changing the diamond formation I would certainly start with this, but with the personel below it is easy to change to a team which again is very capable

                        GK - Forster

RB - R Martin CB - Doc CB - Whitbread LB - Rose

                        DM  - Rusty

RM - Smith                                 LM - Hughes

                        AM - Wes

CF- C Martin                    CF - Johnson

 

4-4-2

                        GK - Forster

RB - R Martin CB - Doc CB - Whitbread  LB - Rose

RM - Smith CM - Russell CM - Hughes LM - MacNamee

      CF - C Martin CF - Johnson/Hoolahan

[/quote]

I agree with you about the Doc and Nelson and Whitbread may be worth a shout, and to me that 4-4-2 looks the best bet.  But I think McDonald would cause a team like Millwall more problems than Johnson.

I still however do not think we should tinker with the team before a big away game agaisnt a play off chasing Millwall.

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Anybody out there not happy with the way Lambert is doing his job????????????????????I thought not.So stop speculating on team and formation changes and just let him get on with it.

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[quote user="ricardo"]Anybody out there not happy with the way Lambert is doing his job????????????????????

I thought not.

So stop speculating on team and formation changes and just let him get on with it.
[/quote]

Very happy with the way Lambert is doing his job Ricardo, but its all about opinions and thats what I believe. We will get stung for sure if we persist with Nelson & Doc or can you seriously say you are  100% happy with that partnership?

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If I had one small criticism of Lambert it would be the fact he didnt use his subs today- by then end of it Smith looked knackered and Wes was getting frustrated as not much was coming off for him. I would have stuck Hughes and MacNamee on to give them both a break. But hey Lambert knows better than me and I trust him.

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Quite right Ricardo

I was not one of Nelsons greatest fans but in fairness since he has been back ( 8 games ) we have only conceded 3 goals. The goal on Tuesday night was not a mistake by Nelson it was Oli Johnson that gave the ball away midway in our half. In the 7 games prior to Nelson getting back in we conceded 9 goals.

We have taken 44 points from 48 - the best record in the whole of Europe at the moment. We have struggled the last 2 games but is that not because of our captain making a ridiculos tackle?

I am sure if Lambert thought our system was not working he would change it. Get of our players backs everyone that has come in has given 100%, even those not as good as the player they are replacing.

We already have 3 of our best players out why would you drop our next best 2 players ie Wes and Kory?

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[quote user="Gazza"]

[quote user="ricardo"]Anybody out there not happy with the way Lambert is doing his job????????????????????I thought not.So stop speculating on team and formation changes and just let him get on with it.[/quote]

Very happy with the way Lambert is doing his job Ricardo, but its all about opinions and thats what I believe. We will get stung for sure if we persist with Nelson & Doc or can you seriously say you are  100% happy with that partnership?

[/quote]No I''m not 100% happy with the partnership and you know my opinions on Nelson. Having said that They''ve won the last 6 so I respect Lamberts view on the matter. I don''t think anyone would disagree that this manager knows what he''s doing so if he changes it or keeps it the same it''s fine with me.Its fun to speculate and second guess but you can''t critisise a bloke who has picked a tean that has taken 44 out of 48 points. No doubt some will jump on his back when the inevitable set back comes but until then we should sit back and enjoy the ride.

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Paul Lambert hasn''t phoned me up tonight to share his thoughts so I am just speculating.

He will almost certainly make the right calls and his players will give everything for him again.

We somehow need to get the sense of momentum back - especially while Holt is still out because momentum is something he brings to the team.

Lambert has talked several times about the pressure of home crowd expectation so why not experiment a little at Millwall?

It is a squad game.

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