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Neil Warnock, Chris Hughton & Luciano Becchio

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[quote user="The Great Mass Debater"] Your description of him is exactly how I would describe his performances over the last 2 seasons. He doesnt appear to have developed at all really.

You get what you get with BJ. Some fans felt he should be player of the season, only missing one game and all, and yes, he always put in great commitment. But his shooting is still woeful. Full of power but never ever anywhere near on target, and his choice to shoot is always a frustrating one. Cant pass generally, and works much better when he can win the ball and lay it off to a playmaker like Hoolahan or Fox. For me he is still a headless chicken, bit like Darel Russell.

I have nothing against BJ, I just think it is misguided to hail him as one of our reasons for success last season. yes he played to the best of his abilities, but for me, it was mainly the limitations of central midfield (of which he formed 50%) that held us back so much last season. BJ, for me, is the main player we should be looking to upgrade upon this season. We need a central midfielder who can do everything. We need a single player who can destroy like BJ, pass like Fox, move like (Jagger) Tettey, invent like Hoolahan, shoot like Butterfield and with the class of Howson. All our midfielders have their qualities, but lack so fundamentally in others. You almost need to play all of them to get the components you need for midfield, whereas a Gerrard has all these abilities in one player.

Im not for a second saying a Gerrard is not a very special player, but this type of all rounder is where we should be looking as a priority in my opinion. Before we got rid of all the strikers (making new strikers the main priority) central midfield was the place we needed better players most in my opinion.[/quote]

Agree almost totally with this. I think BJ has developed, but not enough in the upgraded world we are moving into.  Same could be said of one or two others - central and wide players in particular.

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[quote user="crabbycanary"]Wow TGMD - you don''t want for much! ;)

BJ does the simple things well now. Breaks up play, passes to a yellow shirt. After that, I agree his game needs improving, but when you have a Howson/Hoolahan to pass to and create, then he''s doing alright by me, and can fit in our current team.

There is nothing wrong in looking to upgrade either on what we have btw.

I am NOT saying BJ is the next Paul Scholes (Scholes can shoot for a start!) but he did used to do a similar (upgraded) job for Man U. There are not too many Paul Scholes/Steven Gerrards around as we know.[/quote]

But thats my point - the more limited a player, the more other players you need to play alongside them to fill in for their inadequacies. BJ wins the ball, but then needs to give it to Fox or Hoolahan in order for there to be an effective pass.

Wouldnt it be great if we had a player who could win the ball and then pass himself and then not have to give it to someone else? Wouldnt it be great if we could combine Hoolahans inventiveness and BJs muscle in one player rather than having to play both of them (ie one player instead of two).

We had to play two defensive midfielders and Hoolahan to get that mix last season, which meant we had to play Holt on his own. Or we had to drop Hoolahan to play a second striker, but that proved ineffective because then we had no invention.

If we could find a play who could tackle and pass instead of one or the other - we might actually be able to play with two strikers!

All of our midfielder seem to have a singular strength. We need central midfielders who can do more than one thing. I had hoped this was Tettey last season, but Iv been very disappointed with how one dimensional he has been.

If the Fer signing is confirmed, hopefully this is the answer to this problem, but feel he''d need a partner (although maybe this would release Howson a bit)

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