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[quote user="The gut"]LDC - so what makes you think Wes hasn''t been learning. 3 seasons ago he was playing in the 3rd division. I think he is a far better player now, far better than when he joined us. I think his work rate, tackling, sharpness, and for me, without a doubt, his decision making has improved season on season.

He may not be perfect but would be on my team sheet along with Holt and Bassong before I started adding the other names.

I think he has always suffered from a lack of appreciation by our fans, who barely sing his name from one game to the next. Personally I don''t get it, how so many don''t seem to see the influence he has on our performances.

Additionally he takes the blame when some of the quick free kicks don''t pay off, for me, it''s others not being as switched on or aware. Yes he gets some wrong but so have our previous heros.[/quote]

For what its worth, gut, I do see the improvement in his play.  But there is  room for more improvement still.    Maybe I chose the wrong week to have started a thread like this,  but over the course of this season I have lost count of the times when there were passing options for him and he has twiddled around in circles not really getting anywhere.   I feel we need more directness in our football.   Hoolahan often slows it up by turning on the ball all the time giving defenders time to organise.   

I''m not against him being in the team and I have criticised other players too.   I just want them all to improve - individually and collectively.

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From today''s Guardian;

 

"In a match of confused endeavour at Villa Park, Wes Hoolahan stood out a mile. Every touch was considered, urgent and purposeful. He is the kind of quietly classy playmaker no team should leave home without, and his awareness and touch are such that he probably wouldn''t look out of place playing five-a-sides at La Masia. It''s a surprise that he is not playing for a bigger club, and a minor scandal that he is not playing for his country: his only cap for the Republic of Ireland came four years ago, and he could not even get into the squad for Euro 2012. In an Irish team that tends to deal in confused endeavour, Hoolahan would stand out a mile."

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Gingerpele wrote the following post at 29/10/2012 10:08 AM:

Just something to think about.

How many people moaned about Hucks when he wasted chance after chance?

Not many. That''s because he was exiting, scored goals and created, but he still lost the ball a lot, hit shots wide, put in a poor ball.

Gingerpele I think I agree with what you are trying to say but slightly disagree with your example. I always used to find it so funny and comment on it regularly how the majority of our crowd would be moaning and getting frustrated by hucks, being offside, not passing, losing the ball and wasting an attack only for them to then start worshipping him as a god because he''d performed a piece of genius. On the whole our fans were generally quite inconsistent during a game depending on score/chances but mostly loved him afterwards. Its a bit like If your wife or girlfriend is rubbish at cooking, cleaning and doing the basics to look after you then you may moan and be disappointed quite regularly but every time she turns on the magic in the bedroom you will forget all of her shortcomings.

It is my gut feeling, that hucks probably lost the ball more than Wes, but scored more. I am sure someone somewhere will be able to confirm or argue that with actual stats but for all the similarities between those two they are also very different. If they were girlfriends they would both be crap at housework.. Wes would probably put a bit more effort in all around the house, bring you quite a lot of night time contentment but hucks would have you a little more excited

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Let''s nail the myth that Wes gives the ball away too much once and for all.- His pass success ratio is the highest at the club (88.6%) and is significantly higher than any other player who has made a similar number of passes.- The number of accurate crosses he produces per game (1.3) is second only to Snodgrass (2.0). Although to put this into context he has produced 8 accurate crosses out of 14 attampts compared to 16 from 47 for Snodgrass.- He makes more key passes per game than any other player. I am not 100% sure what consitutes a key pass to be honest but whatever it is Wes produces more than any other player.- He makes more successful dribbles per game (1.8) than any other player. Now none of that seems to point to a player who gives the ball away a lot. There are always two sides to every story though and in the interests of balance the negative aspects to his game is as follows.- He is dispossessed more ofen per game (2) than any other player. He has been dispossessed 12 times this season.- He turns over the ball to the opposition the the third highest amount per game (1.2). Grant Holt leads the way in turnovers with an average of 1.8 per game.In conclusion it seems that idea that he gives the ball away too much stems from the fact that he has been tackled 12 times and that he turns the ball over to the opposition slightly less than Grant Holt. What is perhaps interesting is to look at who leads the way in these particular wasteful aspects of Wes Hoolahan''s game throughout the league. If you look at the number of times dispossessed per game then you will see that the much vaunted James McClean (3.6) leads the way. Other notable names towards the top (bottom?) of the charts are Fernando Torres (3.1), Sergio Aguero and Shinji Kagawa (2.8), Carlos Tevez (2.6) and Juan Mata (2.4). I''m sure the Chesea message boards are full of people moaning about how wasteful Juan Mata is [:^)]. With an average of two times dispossessed per game Wes is at the same level as Wayne Rooney and Santi Carzola. One thing that all of these players have in common is that they regularly look to beat their man. In terms of turnovers he is less wasteful than Demba Ba (2.7 per game), Oscar (2.1), Gareth Bale (1.8) and Eden Hazard (1.6). I''m sorry that this post is a little ''stat heavy'' but the only way to banish tese vague feelings that some people have with certain players is with facts. Posters who have been around for a similar time than me will remember the annual Youseff Safri Ramadan thread where people would swear blind that he regularly missed games during this period. Eventually Pete posted the facts that proved this was not the case. It didn''t stop it all but sometimes on here myths do build until people start to believe they are facts. Hopefully this post will go some way towards ending one of the myths surrounding one of our most important players.

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It won''t end the the myth Shak. Don''t apologise for the stats, I think they are quite interesting. They don''t tell the whole story, we all know what stats can and can''t do. It can be seen though why people think he loses the ball and also why others think he uses it well.

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[quote user="Wiz"][quote user="lappinitup"][quote user="smooth"]hoolahoops.......

pilky.......[/quote]I take it from those names you''re not very . Long afteold. I think if you ask your grandad he will tell you that Wes is right up there with Jimmy Hill and Tommy Bryceland, both City legendsr Wes has gone, people will look back and realise what a little gem we had and how important he was in our rise from the ashes.Enjoy him while we''ve still got him.[/quote]

 

The hell he is Lapps, those two rarely lost the ball like Wes does![/quote]

The problem as we get older Wiz is that we tend to suffer from selective memory. People used to say "when Hill / Bryceland plays well, the whole team plays well". Just shows they had off days too, and I recall although they could be brilliant on their day, they were just as frustrating as Wes at times too. And it must not be forgotten, Tommy played for us in the second Division and Jimmy in the third. Wes has played for us in all three divisions and whether the hurly burly of the third division or the quality of the Premier League, he has succeeded in them all.

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[quote user="Shack Attack"]Let''s nail the myth that Wes gives the ball away too much once and for all.

- His pass success ratio is the highest at the club (88.6%) and is significantly higher than any other player who has made a similar number of passes.
- The number of accurate crosses he produces per game (1.3) is second only to Snodgrass (2.0). Although to put this into context he has produced 8 accurate crosses out of 14 attampts compared to 16 from 47 for Snodgrass.
- He makes more key passes per game than any other player. I am not 100% sure what consitutes a key pass to be honest but whatever it is Wes produces more than any other player.
- He makes more successful dribbles per game (1.8) than any other player.

Now none of that seems to point to a player who gives the ball away a lot. There are always two sides to every story though and in the interests of balance the negative aspects to his game is as follows.

- He is dispossessed more ofen per game (2) than any other player. He has been dispossessed 12 times this season.
- He turns over the ball to the opposition the the third highest amount per game (1.2). Grant Holt leads the way in turnovers with an average of 1.8 per game.

In conclusion it seems that idea that he gives the ball away too much stems from the fact that he has been tackled 12 times and that he turns the ball over to the opposition slightly less than Grant Holt.

What is perhaps interesting is to look at who leads the way in these particular wasteful aspects of Wes Hoolahan''s game throughout the league. If you look at the number of times dispossessed per game then you will see that the much vaunted James McClean (3.6) leads the way. Other notable names towards the top (bottom?) of the charts are Fernando Torres (3.1), Sergio Aguero and Shinji Kagawa (2.8), Carlos Tevez (2.6) and Juan Mata (2.4). I''m sure the Chesea message boards are full of people moaning about how wasteful Juan Mata is [:^)]. With an average of two times dispossessed per game Wes is at the same level as Wayne Rooney and Santi Carzola. One thing that all of these players have in common is that they regularly look to beat their man. In terms of turnovers he is less wasteful than Demba Ba (2.7 per game), Oscar (2.1), Gareth Bale (1.8) and Eden Hazard (1.6).

I''m sorry that this post is a little ''stat heavy'' but the only way to banish tese vague feelings that some people have with certain players is with facts. Posters who have been around for a similar time than me will remember the annual Youseff Safri Ramadan thread where people would swear blind that he regularly missed games during this period. Eventually Pete posted the facts that proved this was not the case. It didn''t stop it all but sometimes on here myths do build until people start to believe they are facts. Hopefully this post will go some way towards ending one of the myths surrounding one of our most important players.
[/quote]

 

Yeah but what about all those penalties that The Doc used to give away Shack[:^)] You can statattack as much as you like but us posters know best......

 

[:S][;)]

 

 

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[quote user="nutty nigel"]Yeah but what about all those penalties that The Doc used to give away Shack[:^)] You can statattack as much as you like but us posters know best......

 [:S][;)]

 [/quote]

I forgot about The Doc and penalties  to be fair. I think people used to include penalties and free kicks that they felt he should have given away to try and prove their point! The thing that amuses me is that if you want to criticise Wes (or The Doc or Grant Holt or anyone who plays for us) then you can probably find a couple of aspects of their game in which they could do better. As much as we love our club they are playing for NCFC for a reason. But instead people choose to fabricate nonsense to back up their own opinions and that should always be challenged as far as I am concerned.

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I''m going to bite on this one more time.     The reason Hoolahan looks good is that he is a skilful player.  He can and does deliver a good pass.  However, there are times when he just doesn''t deliver that pass - or deliver the shot that gets the goal.   

He is not a great goalscorer - doesn''t shoot enough from outside the area - inside the area he doesn''t have the killer instinct of a striker - so why is he playing up front?   If you play him further back,  he becomes more of a liabilty for when he is caught on the ball - so  the only safe way to play him is up front - but does he offer enough goal scoring threat?  

For all his skill and looking good on the ball, I would still prefer to see a striker alongside Holt as a goal scoring threat.  It sounds harsh of me, I know, because Hools is on a good run in the team - but can he score goals?   Its goals we need  - he scored 4 (?) last season - if he is playing off the front man almost as a second striker  - he has to score goals.   

One poster gp, I think,  said if Hools is on the ball then that other players will see less of it  - well that was apparent on Saturday.   If he is to be our playmaker week in week out he has to deliver  more than he does at present.     A lot of his passes are short when he runs out of space running in circles trying to keep the ball.    He quite often fails to see the easier pass that would bring other players in - before he gets involved in those ball keeping tricks.    And when he does finally get a ball right and gets through himself on goal - he doesn''t deliver.

Its no good saying "enjoy him while he''s here" - we need goals and to win matches.  I was disappointed Saturday.   I thought Villa were as poor a team as I''ve seen us play in any division - yet we still allowed them to score - and then lacked the quality to take advantage of a further weakened side after the sending off.  A draw was acceptable - but disappointing.   I may have been a bit unfair to Hoolahan in this thread, because the team as a whole were not great - so many wasted set pieces too - but I think we can do better than what we saw on Saturday.   We''ll have to. 

 

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Hoolahan is the Norwich player most able to drift into the spaces between teams'' defence and midfield. It''s all well and good saying ''he doesn''t score enough'' but I think I''m right in saying he had more assists than any other player last season - playing a second striker would lose Wes'' ability to find space and create a chance or two - the stats provided by Shack go to prove that he is Norwich''s most creative player and it is pointless having strikers on the pitch if there is no one to provide the ball to them. The diamond played under Lambert to such wonderful success relied on Hoolahan and Norwich''s two strikers relied on Hoolahan''s passes.

 

The last thing Norwich should be doing is going back to a 4-4-2, especially with the type of strikers we have. With no Bergkamp style of player who will drop off their marker and all a conduit for attacking player the team will be forced into more and more long balls.

 

Hoolahan is fantastic at finding space, maintaining possession (no matter what everyone else says about him always losing the ball) and then passing it on - when he isn''t on the pitch Norwich are resorted into more hopeful passes into the channels or towards Holt''s head. Hughton has found a really good balance with the team at the moment (although Fox or Howson would have provided more creativity on Saturday) and going back to the 4-4-2 will result in more Liverpool style results.

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we started the season with 2 up front and scored nothing and did not look like scoring.  while having shots we also created very few clear cut chances.    We offered nothing going forward and were dour and defensive - with 2 strikers.  

 

Hoolahan has changed all that;  he is NOT played as a striker,  but the creative link player.  he offers an attacking spark that enriches the team and provides an attacking outlet.  His prime role is to open defences and set up chances,  this he has done better than any player over the last 4 seasons.   On top he has a better cross completion and successful dribble rate than the wingers and pass completion rate than midfielders who never try a pass that his incisive.        

On sat we created numerous match winning chances - a world away from ,ost of those first 4 games.   The issue for us failing to win on sat was not down to the formation or having just one striker,  it was down to players  failing to shoot, finish, pass or cross well enough, who was the teams worst performer on Sat?   Prob Holt - yet rightly no one is looking to drop (or blame) him 

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Jesus I disagree with this so much.

 

So someone who plays in a link-up role has to score goals or they can''t play. Put 2 men up front and they don''t score as many without Wes as they don''t get the final ball. Doesn''t make sense to me.

 

Its just been proved he gets dispossessed at a rate of 2.0 which isn''t that more more thant he rest of the team yet he makes up with it with a high 80s completion rate. What do you think happens to passes from players nowhere near an 88.6% completion rate?

 

I priase the Lord that people who love a good ole flat 4-4-2 don''t get to pick football teams! Its dead, teams who win anything don''t play a flat 4-4-2 nowadays.

 

Everytime Wes doesn''t play for 1 or 2 games he always ends up back in the team as we always play poorly without him - Proven this season yet again and is why he played the majority of games last season and only a few players played more than him, one of those being the GK.

 

The stats back it up, the Guardian reckons so, yet Pinkun posters know better!

 

 

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Gary Lineker, striker in teh second most successful england team owed a lot to the contribution of one peter beardsley who also provided the link role yet failed to score bucket loads of goals - beardsley or bull or smith?   PB every time...

 

Wes is that foil

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I take in what you''re all saying and I do appreciate he is a skilful and creative player - and agree he should be in the team more often than not.   Its just that we need to see an end product from  him - and the rest of the team too.   However you look at it - we are still not scoring enough goals!

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[quote user="York Canary"]MOTM was definitely Brad Guzan. If Hoolahan had scored his sitter then he would have got it, but he didnt and he was generally poor in the first half getting crowded out and losing the ball frequently. Guzan stopped both his one-on-one contests and another good stop from a Hoolahan volley[/quote]........totally agree. we saw the worst of wes in the first half, and then a completely different aspect of his abilities in the second. a chalk and cheese performance.

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lake district canary: However you look at it - we are still not scoring enough goals!

Absolutely, perhaps the playing of two defensive midfielders is something to do with this. I think Tettey has been excellent, and hope that Fox will get a start alongside him soon. We always score more goals when Fox plays.

He quickens the pace of our play and has a decent pass on him.

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[quote user="Citizen Journalist Foghorn"]

hope that Fox will get a start alongside him soon. We always score more goals when Fox plays.

He quickens the pace of our play and has a decent pass on him.[/quote]

 

Thats an excellent point - his one touch play is excellent and speed of delivery can make an enormous difference.

 

Linking it to sats game I lost count of the number of times a city play took two or three touches when a quick ball looked on and preferable;  those extra touches gave villa time to get back into position to defend far to often. 

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LDC "Its just that we need to see an end product from  him"

er we did, he laid on an assist for the goal. That''s his role, not a second striker as others have pointed out.

I always bang on about stats as evidence for opinion so its great to see your post Shack, a great read with a few extra ones I wasn''t aware of.

Bethnal you are right he had more assists than any other Norwich player in the Premier league last year, I always bang on about that in a Wes thread, but it gets roundly ignored.

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[quote user="lake district canary"]I''m going to bite on this one more time.     The reason Hoolahan looks good is that he is a skilful player.  He can and does deliver a good pass.  However, there are times when he just doesn''t deliver that pass - or deliver the shot that gets the goal.   

He is not a great goalscorer - doesn''t shoot enough from outside the area - inside the area he doesn''t have the killer instinct of a striker - so why is he playing up front?   If you play him further back,  he becomes more of a liabilty for when he is caught on the ball - so  the only safe way to play him is up front - but does he offer enough goal scoring threat?  

For all his skill and looking good on the ball, I would still prefer to see a striker alongside Holt as a goal scoring threat.  It sounds harsh of me, I know, because Hools is on a good run in the team - but can he score goals?   Its goals we need  - he scored 4 (?) last season - if he is playing off the front man almost as a second striker  - he has to score goals.     [/quote]What''s more important? Scoring a goal or creating a goal? Surely they''re as important as each other.I''d argue they''re as important as each other, and Hoolahan had a combined total (goals and assists) of 12 last season. That''s fantastic going.The ONLY players who got more assists last year in the Premier League were:Silva, Mata, Adebayor, Valencia, Aquero, Van Persie, Bale, Nani, Walcott, Sessegnon, Young, NasriCan you spot the pattern? with the only exception of Sessegnon, they all play for far superior teams than Norwich - all teams in the top 6 who scored far more goals in total than we did. We are incredibly lucky to have someone who can create for us almost 1 in 6 of our goals scored (going on last season).You started the thread after the Villa game, so I can only assume it was a reaction to Wes''s performance against Villa. Do you not agree that without Wes, we probably would have struggled to create more than 1 or 2 chances? Everything went through him.

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[quote user="lake district canary"][quote user="The gut"]LDC - so what makes you think Wes hasn''t been learning. 3 seasons ago he was playing in the 3rd division. I think he is a far better player now, far better than when he joined us. I think his work rate, tackling, sharpness, and for me, without a doubt, his decision making has improved season on season. He may not be perfect but would be on my team sheet along with Holt and Bassong before I started adding the other names. I think he has always suffered from a lack of appreciation by our fans, who barely sing his name from one game to the next. Personally I don''t get it, how so many don''t seem to see the influence he has on our performances. Additionally he takes the blame when some of the quick free kicks don''t pay off, for me, it''s others not being as switched on or aware. Yes he gets some wrong but so have our previous heros.[/quote]


For what its worth, gut, I do see the improvement in his play.  But there is  room for more improvement still.    Maybe I chose the wrong week to have started a thread like this,  but over the course of this season I have lost count of the times when there were passing options for him and he has twiddled around in circles not really getting anywhere.   I feel we need more directness in our football.   Hoolahan often slows it up by turning on the ball all the time giving defenders time to organise.   


I''m not against him being in the team and I have criticised other players too.   I just want them all to improve - individually and collectively.



[/quote]

 

Sorry, but..''twiddling around in circles? '' How can you not see that when he does that it draws opposition defenders - even those of the top teams - all over the place leaving gaps for others to exploit? His ability to twist and turn like this is one of his greatest assets and this leads to a lot of our attacking threat.

 

Give the guy a break.  If he gave the ball away any less and converted more of his chances he''d basically be David Silva and rated at about ¬£50m.

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