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GJL Mid-Norfolk Canary

The "Hoolahan dilemma" returns....

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so now that he''s apparantly back on side, the question of how to accomodate him will once again now become an issue.

Clearly his favoured position is in the hole but the question is will it be behind one or two strikers and then what will the make up of the rest of the team be beyond that.

In my opinion, and I''m sure this will be backed up by stats the vast majority of teams who get promoted from the Championship play with 2 strikers and surely this is how we must go too?...you''d imagine Lafferty and Hooper would be the preferred partnership.

So we''ve then 2 options ....a diamond in which case we sacrifice the width of the likes of Redmond,Bennett and Pilkington...or a 442 whereby Hoolahan plays wide and cuts in.

Adams may surprise us and go 4411 playing Hoolahan behind a lone striker....but as I said any team wanting automatic promotion out of this league needs to win games ,home and away and be targeting 85+ points.....we simply wouldn''t score enough goals that way.

must admit ,I didnt think we''d have this ''nice'' problem as I thought he''d be on his way this summer.

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With the diamond the width comes from the overlapping fullbacks, so it''s def possible to have 2 up top and keep the width. I think (hope) we''ll see Olsson and Whittaker pushing forward whilst Johnson, Howson and Tettey sit deep.

To be fair we''ll need several formations this season anyway, so I''m sure that we''ll see switches game to game plus I doubt Wes will play every match..

But you''re right, a nice dilemma to have.

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My issue is mainly that if you have to build a team round a player then he has to step up to the plate in EVERY game.The diamond is realistically the only formation that can accommodate Wes, a formation that isn''t gonna work every matchday, and like any formation, has its limitations, and you have to have very specific personnel to make it work well.Great option, but he needs to start having more good games than anonymous ones.

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Nail on head Morty! Regardless of how I feel about him still being at the club, if he stays, then that''s exactly what we need from him.

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Variation is the key.

Hoolahan has to step up to the plate if he plays in the hole in a diamond. It does not mean we will be playing the diamond every match.

I just have this feeling we are not going to be anywhere near as rigid in our formations as we have been for the last two seasons.

Horses for courses. There are matches when the diamond will be the best option for us just as there are matches when 442 could be better.

Perhaps it''s a good thing to have a ''specialist'' player to play at the tip of the diamond ........ if we play the diamond that week.

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[quote user="Yellow Wall"]Variation is the key.

Hoolahan has to step up to the plate if he plays in the hole in a diamond. It does not mean we will be playing the diamond every match.

I just have this feeling we are not going to be anywhere near as rigid in our formations as we have been for the last two seasons.

Horses for courses. There are matches when the diamond will be the best option for us just as there are matches when 442 could be better.

Perhaps it''s a good thing to have a ''specialist'' player to play at the tip of the diamond ........ if we play the diamond that week.[/quote]I agree, but I think it will be more of an occasional formation, than our main one. Seriously I had friends on twitter last night praising him like some sort of returning demi-God lol!

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Fer or Howson could also play the point of the diamond, and potentially weigh in with more goals.

Nice to have some options and to hear some positive noises from the camp.

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Its a good dilemna to have.  He seems to have been rejuvinated since Adams took over - and his confidence must have had a boost playing well for Ireland.   Also at this level he is proven to be effective so if he stays he could have a big role this season.

So many combinations and formations look available to us this year with the players we have.   Too much changing around could be problematic, so it could be that whichever formation works well to start with will be the one that predominates through the season.   Personally hope the best formation and the one we see the most is 433, with something like Tettey Fer and Surman in midfield, with  Lafferty, a scoring RVW and one of the wide men in attack .  Unfortunately that wouldn''t include Wes, but if he comes into the team and we start to do better, it would make him irreplaceable.

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[quote user="Zachariah Lovespoon"]No dilemma for me. If he''s fit & in the right frame of mind he plays. Still our most influential & technically gifted player by a distance.[/quote]And thats the rub, to my mind, he showed a bit of disloyalty last season, he owes us a performance or two to win people back.

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of course this all might sort itself out should there be departures to the likes of Hooper and Fer......IMO this dilemma really only exists as in my belief the strike partnership of Hooper/Lafferty should be set in stone, with everything else fitting in around that.

a Hooper departure could mean Hoolahan is accomodated in a 433?

Redmond Lafferty Grabban/Pilks/Bennett

Hoolahan

Tettey/Johnson Howson

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Taking away any bias that people may think I have, I do not see Wes starting every game next season.

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Adams is more technically aware than Hughton and it seems that he will play the right personnel, in the correct positions to get results. As we have more games this season Wes will get a fair amount of time on the pitch but I would not expect him to play left wing again when we have Josh and Pilks available.

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I don''t think he owes us anything Morty. Been a terrific servant to the club & everything he''s already achieved here far outweighs his outburst & mini sulk last season, which I think was pretty justified (from his perspective as a professional) given his position at the time.

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[quote user="Zachariah Lovespoon"]I don''t think he owes us anything Morty. Been a terrific servant to the club & everything he''s already achieved here far outweighs his outburst & mini sulk last season, which I think was pretty justified (from his perspective as a professional) given his position at the time.[/quote]I accept where you are coming from, but I disagree, I think he was extremely disrespectful, not only to the club, but also to the fans.

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[quote user="morty"][quote user="Zachariah Lovespoon"]No dilemma for me. If he''s fit & in the right frame of mind he plays. Still our most influential & technically gifted player by a distance.[/quote]And thats the rub, to my mind, he showed a bit of disloyalty last season, he owes us a performance or two to win people back.[/quote]
That''ll be all forgotten when he hits his first goal and celebrates with some intense fist pumps to the crowd.

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That''s fair enough. Just think that if I was a footballer getting toward the end of my career & a club wasn''t playing me regularly & at the same time refused to let me leave after I''d been a mainstay that I''d be pretty cheesed too. I blame Hughton :)

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[quote user="Zachariah Lovespoon"]That''s fair enough. Just think that if I was a footballer getting toward the end of my career & a club wasn''t playing me regularly & at the same time refused to let me leave after I''d been a mainstay that I''d be pretty cheesed too. I blame Hughton :)[/quote]Yeah, totally understand his frustration, but he was a wee bit disrespectful to the wrong people, the fans.

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This is professional sport. Hoolahan doesn''t owe us anything but we owe him nothing. If, as other posters have suggested, we use not only different formations during the season but different formations during a game then Hoolahan is likely to be in favour sometimes and out of it at others. Unless he is stupid he has already realised that. If he is happy with such a situation then he should be kept on. If not, if he believes we should regard him as always indispensable, we can try to sell him to a Premier League club or, failing that, offer him on loan early in September to a League One or League Two side.

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Get what you''re saying Morty. I just don''t think he was disrespectful to the fans. The Villa goal celebration was what could reasonably be expected of a player who at the time was in a kind of limbo between the two clubs. And I don''t think he''s meaning the fans when he said ship (sp) club. Just someone cheesed with their employer. Anyway let''s do the un-pink''un thing and agree to disagree :)

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[quote user="Zachariah Lovespoon"]Get what you''re saying Morty. I just don''t think he was disrespectful to the fans. The Villa goal celebration was what could reasonably be expected of a player who at the time was in a kind of limbo between the two clubs. And I don''t think he''s meaning the fans when he said ship (sp) club. Just someone cheesed with their employer. Anyway let''s do the un-pink''un thing and agree to disagree :)[/quote]I''m fine with that[Y]

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I personally am very unhappy Wes is still at the club, that is how strongly I feel about what happened, it was a major issue.

So, whilst I accept whatever happens and will always support all in the City shirt, I feel we all deserve some consistency from him and MoM performances this coming season, then, maybe, just I will accept him once again.......a goal and a couple of assists at Poorman Road could do the trick!

That all said, regardless, I agree it is likely that he will be in and out of the team all season as we mix things up depending on who we play.

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GJL hit the nail on the head - Hoolahan needs to have the rest of the team selected to suit his inclusion, but then to some extent the same applied to Hux, who also had something of a very distinctive way of playing.

I recall that when we signed Wes Blackpool had been playing him as a left winger, having tried him in various positions.

Wes is not s striker, and in fact I have the impression that his actual goal-scoring has diminished over the past few seasons. If you reckon him to be one of four midfielders with, we hope, two quick wingers, then somebody else in the midfield has to contribute to creativity and also to defence - I doubt if even Leroy could do this. With wingers attacking, we would have little defensive cover for the back four - our Achilles heel at the moment.

There seem to be three possibilities:

1) Play 4-4-1-1 using Wes as the first 1 in support of the striker. This would mean that we are defensively more compact and strong, and also that the wingers could quickly turn the front one into three.

2)Play 4-4-2, with Wes in the midfield and two strikers. - this would weaken us defensively, and perhaps would require a different sort of player on the wing. (I have the memory of the game at the Hawthorns, where we somehow won, with Leroy on the left wing!.)

3) Play orthodox 4-4-2, without Wes. Two of Surman, Howson and Fer could fill the central midfield roles between them, and could be as creative as Wes.

I am sure that Adams has been considering the three set-ups, and others. The answer could well be to be more expansive at home, and have two strikers, but play only one away. It doesn''t have to be exclusive - I am sure that Adams will have been training the squad to adapt according to need during matches, and with substitutions when necessary.

We now seem to have a squad with good cover in all positions, except the defence, which worries me, especially after the mess which resulted in the goal for Bastia! But that''s another story.

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Every player given a clean slate under Adams, including Hoolahan.

It appears that Bassong has rejected the opportunity, and Hoolahan has welcomed it.

Look at the players at Man Utd who didn''t want to be playing under Moyes who are now happy to be playing under Van Gaal, including Van Persie who was rumoured to want to return to Arsenal if Moyes stayed.

Should Man Utd fans turn their backs on Van Persie and drive him out? Or accept that perhaps Moyes was the problem.

Maybe Hoolahan is only interested again because Villa interest subdued, maybe he likes playing under Adams, who knows - but some bridges appear to have been rebuilt because he isn''t training with the development squad like Bassong.

If Adams gives everybody a clean slate then so should the fans. Welcome back Hoolahan.

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I agree ZL. I never took what he said or did as a slap at the supporters. He was rightly angered by being out of the lineup or an unused sub when our offense was nonexistent for weeks at a time.

As to the "his scoring ability dropped the last few seasons" comment from someone else, that applies to every goal scorer and assister the last 2 seasons. For all we know, he could have plenty of goals left in him. The last 2 seasons we''d like "Dallas"when Bobby returned, a poorly written and imaginationless bad dream.

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Interesting memories people have.

Have a look at the last dozen games under Hoooooootern and what happened subsequently.

No doubt using him "wrong" is worse than not using him at all....?

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