66 thoughts on “Match ratings – Burnley

  1. Vorm, Chiriches and Rose get a 7.

    Nobody else above a 4.

    Poch gets a 2. No excuse for starting Paulinho. No excuse for playing him for 90 minutes. No excuse for leaving Townsend AND Lamela on the bench to leave us with absolutely no pace in the side – we're playing away from home we need fast players who can counter. No excuse for waiting so long to bring on the fast players when it was clear the system wasn't working.

    There was none of the pressing and high tempo game that's brought us results in the past. Either our players are tired from a season of double training sessions and a high intensity game, or they've given up on top 4. Either way, as of today – so have I.

    Two fast, skilful attacking players are the priorities for next summer. As it should have been last summer. Today was like watching Spurs under Graham after we'd sold Ginola. Awful.

  2. Vorm 7 clean sheet and made one really good save.
    Rose 6 tried hard, not much cme off though.
    Dier 7 solid.
    Chirches 6 A bit wobbly to begin with, but settled.
    walker 6 Okay until he went off.
    Chadli 3 Anonymous.
    Paulinho 3 Ibid.
    Mason. 5 Needs to impose himself.
    Bentaleb.5 same as mason.
    Eriksen 4 Has really gone off the boil.
    Kane 4 Can't really be blamed given how the players behind him performed.

  3. All the talk during the international break on here was about our poor defensive record, lack of protection for the back 4, relying too much on Lloris, defenders not good enough etc. Perhaps rightly, we've been poor defensively.

    Pochettino makes the change with Paulinho to make us more solid, and despite missing Lloris, Vertonghen and Fazio and Walker having a mare and going off injured, we kept a clean sheet and defended rather well.

    Cue people furious with Pochettino…

    I really don't get it.

  4. braineclipse

    All the talk during the international break on here was about our poor defensive record, lack of protection for the back 4, relying too much on Lloris, defenders not good enough etc. Perhaps rightly, we've been poor defensively.

    Pochettino makes the change with Paulinho to make us more solid, and despite missing Lloris, Vertonghen and Fazio and Walker having a mare and going off injured, we kept a clean sheet and defended rather well.

    Cue people furious with Pochettino…

    I really don't get it.

    It's about balance, no point keeping clean sheets at the expense of being impotent in attack and vice versa not put scoring 4 goals if u let the other team score 5. Poch has done a hell of a lot right this season, but this game was clearly not going to plan at half time – there was no change to shape etc.. Lamela for Chadli is a waste of a sub as both are pretty useless (at least this version of Chadli), I think someone like Dembele in the middle would have been made more sense. By going past a player he breaks their nicely formed banks of 4, pulls people around creating space for others which we lacked the entire game and I would have that the only option short of matching their 4-4-2.

  5. braineclipse

    All the talk during the international break on here was about our poor defensive record, lack of protection for the back 4, relying too much on Lloris, defenders not good enough etc. Perhaps rightly, we've been poor defensively.

    Pochettino makes the change with Paulinho to make us more solid, and despite missing Lloris, Vertonghen and Fazio and Walker having a mare and going off injured, we kept a clean sheet and defended rather well.

    Cue people furious with Pochettino…

    I really don't get it.

    Because Paulinho ins't that player to do that, that's why. Why not Stambouli, a much mor solid figure, maybe freeing up Bentaleb and Mason a little more? Even Dembele who can hold on to the ball. Instead he went with Paulinho, who's a little bit like Bentaleb and Mason, tidy enough but can't really do anything that well…

    Poch is absolutely to blame today, like he has been most of the season with his awful decisions.

  6. I thought the defence played well considering the lack of leadership and experience

    I though mason and Bentelab were all over the place and had a poor game but weren't really helped by anyone in front of them

    I've never seen erisken pass the ball so badly but eh was arguably our best attacking option

    Kane got zero service and must has felt like playing for England

  7. GrimsbyYid

    Because Paulinho ins't that player to do that, that's why. Why not Stambouli, a much mor solid figure, maybe freeing up Bentley and Mason a little more? Even Dembele who can hold on to the ball. Instead he went with Paulinho, who's a little bit like Bentley and Mason, tidy enough but can't really do anything that well…

    Poch is absolutely to blame today, like he has been most of the season with his awful decisions.

    Poorlinho did little wrong and little right and wasn't our worst player by any means but be just offers nothing. He doesn't create, defend or score to any real measure so he doesn't have any impact really.

    Strane game to bring him in imo

  8. GrimsbyYid

    Because Paulinho ins't that player to do that, that's why. Why not Stambouli, a much mor solid figure, maybe freeing up Bentley and Mason a little more? Even Dembele who can hold on to the ball. Instead he went with Paulinho, who's a little bit like Bentley and Mason, tidy enough but can't really do anything that well…

    Poch is absolutely to blame today, like he has been most of the season with his awful decisions.

    o_O

  9. demotw

    It's about balance, no point keeping clean sheets at the expense of being impotent in attack and vice versa not put scoring 4 goals if u let the other team score 5. Poch has done a hell of a lot right this season, but this game was clearly not going to plan at half time – there was no change to shape etc.. Lamela for Chadli is a waste of a sub as both are pretty useless (at least this version of Chadli), I think someone like Dembele in the middle would have been made more sense. By going past a player he breaks their nicely formed banks of 4, pulls people around creating space for others which we lacked the entire game and I would have that the only option short of matching their 4-4-2.

    We made the Lamela change after an hour, pretty standard time to start making substitutions…

    Lamela, for me at least, did quite well after he came on. Set up the Eriksen chance, set up Kane in the box, started a counter attack, worked hard defensively. Shame we couldn't get him on the ball more. The sub made perfect sense to me at least. We weren't getting into good positions in the final third, Townsend/Dembele weren't obvious solutions to that problem.

    Dembele at his best does all those things…

    GrimsbyYid

    Because Paulinho ins't that player to do that, that's why. Why not Stambouli, a much mor solid figure, maybe freeing up Bentley and Mason a little more? Even Dembele who can hold on to the ball. Instead he went with Paulinho, who's a little bit like Bentley and Mason, tidy enough but can't really do anything that well…

    Poch is absolutely to blame today, like he has been most of the season with his awful decisions.

    But Paulinho did those things, last time when he came on and today.

    Been saying all throughout the international break in discussion about our defensive problems that imo the main problem has been the attacking 4 not doing enough defensively. Townsend out, Paulinho in pretty much sorted that out. And despite playing Chiriches and Ben Davies as centre backs we kept a clean sheet and Burnley created very little apart from the early chance we gifted them. Defensively the change worked today…

  10. Bedfordspurs

    Poorlinho did little wrong and little right and wasn't our worst player by any means but be just offers nothing. He doesn't create, defend or score to any real measure so he doesn't have any impact really.

    Strane game to bring him in imo

    Compared to who?

    Compared to Townsend, who he replaced in the starting line-up, he most certainly does.

  11. braineclipse

    Compared to who?

    Compared to Townsend, who he replaced in the starting line-up, he most certainly does.

    He defends better than townsend… Possibly. I didn't see anything of note defensively from him to be honest but be was meant to be playing number 10!!!!! He created very little and spanked a shot wideim trying hard not to criticise him because he wasnt the worse player for us. I just don't get why he played him at all

  12. Bedfordspurs

    He defends better than townsend… Possibly. I didn't see anything of note defensively from him to be honest but be was meant to be playing number 10!!!!! He created very little and spanked a shot wideim trying hard not to criticise him because he wasnt the worse player for us. I just don't get why he played him at all

    The idea with pressing from the front, working as a unit, it's that it doesn't matter if you're the number 10 or number 4, you have to do your job defensively. It's where we've struggled recently. Paulinho did that.

    I'm not arguing that he did well enough going forward… But I also think that very few of our players today did well enough on the ball.

    I really don't think you can say that "he doesn't defend" and then also claim that you're trying hard not to criticise him.

  13. braineclipse

    All the talk during the international break on here was about our poor defensive record, lack of protection for the back 4, relying too much on Lloris, defenders not good enough etc. Perhaps rightly, we've been poor defensively.

    Pochettino makes the change with Paulinho to make us more solid, and despite missing Lloris, Vertonghen and Fazio and Walker having a mare and going off injured, we kept a clean sheet and defended rather well.

    Cue people furious with Pochettino…

    I really don't get it.

    If you couldn't see how impotent we were in attack – then I give up!

  14. Maltese Falcon

    You are correct but then our focus should be on Chadli, Eriksen and Kane who were simply abysmal.

    My reply was to Brain, and I agree with you that the entire attacking unit was poor today. He was trying to excuse Poch for playing Paulinho in order to try and solidify the defence. So was he playing DM?

    I still want to know if anyone can work out our formation today?

  15. Pirate55

    My reply was to Brain, and I agree with you that the entire attacking unit was poor today. He was trying to excuse Poch for playing Paulinho in order to try and solidify the defence. So was he playing DM?

    I still want to know if anyone can work out our formation today?

    It's pretty obvious

    Paulinho came on against Leicester and had an excellent 30 minutes, and was crucial in regaining the advantage. So Poch, quite fairly, decided to give him a chance from the start. Why are people so baffled about that? That's what should always be the case… how else would players be motivated and assured that they would be given a fair crack?

    As I said, this escaped goating is frankly ridiculous. If Mason, Bentaleb, Eriksen and Chadli played anything more than abysmal, we would have had a great chance to win this. Anyone blaming Paulinho is way, way off track.

  16. Vorm – 7… Confident display, did all what was asked of him.

    Walker – 4… First half display suggests he's unsure about his own game, and he's a player I've always felt, plays with over confidence!

    Dier – 7… Took an elbow to the face but carried on. Did well enough throughout.

    Chiriches – 7… Coped well and in both positions he was asked to play.

    Rose – 7…Didn't offer that much going forward but did all that were asked of him defensively.

    Mason – 3… I know he were on the field, but I'm struggling to recall any of his contributions to the game.

    Bentaleb – 4…Similar to Mason , just a bit better. Did enough to put Ings off, when the Burnley forward was through on goal.

    Paulinho – 6…First start since the away game to WBA . Coincidental that game was our last clean sheet? Got about the pitch well without really creating anything.

    Eriksen – 4…His contribution with the ball was not up to what we expect from him .

    Kane – 4…Looked sluggish throughout.

    Chadli – 3…Same as, Mason. I know he were on the field, but I'm not sure what his contribution to the game was today.

    Subs

    Davies – 7…Did well in the center-half role he were asked to play. A good future option.

    Lamela – 4…Didn't really get into the game bar putting Eriksen through in on goal.

    Townsend N/A…Wasn't given enough time by Poch.

    ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    Too many of our players were in that, 'what does he do' zone today. The game was one serious snooze Fest.
    Looks like our season will now peter out and whether we get EL or not, I'm not too fussed.
    I suspect Poch will be using the remaining games, to give those he's still undecided about one last chance

  17. braineclipse

    All the talk during the international break on here was about our poor defensive record, lack of protection for the back 4, relying too much on Lloris, defenders not good enough etc. Perhaps rightly, we've been poor defensively.

    Pochettino makes the change with Paulinho to make us more solid, and despite missing Lloris, Vertonghen and Fazio and Walker having a mare and going off injured, we kept a clean sheet and defended rather well.

    Cue people furious with Pochettino…

    I really don't get it.

    Ever heard the term a "even a blind squirrel finds an acorn once in a while"? That's not a dig at Poch btw, it was meant for our woeful defence. Are we meant to be pleased that we scraped a hard fought draw against the third worst team in the league? Added to the inept display against Leicester last game.

    I don't have that much of a problem with Poch playing Paulinho, let's face it, besides Eriksen and Chadli, the rest of the attacking midfield have ranged from dreaful to average. But, in general, I do find his substitutions to be a bit strange and ill timed. He's the manager, so ultimately the buck stops with him, but the players do have to shoulder a lot of the blame for today also. Chadli and Paulinho seem to be the fall guys, but I thought Mason and Bentaleb were equally poor. I don't quite get what the fuss is about with those two If I am honest. Well Bentaleb I kind of get the hype, he's good on the ball, but just don't really see Mason as anything more than a squad player. Grimsby posted that they offer nothing going forward and no solidity, I don't quite feel as strongly, but I do see where he is coming from.

  18. I know some people will say this is making a escaped goat out of him, however I though Paulinho was desperately poor today. Didnt add anything at all. There's a bunch of others who also didnt contribute much however they're mainly young players (and will therefore have off days) rather than someone who has a lot of international experience.

    We've had a decent season relative to my expectations; now looking forward to the summer and a bit of a clear-out

  19. AdamB

    I know some people will say this is making a escaped goat out of him, however I though Paulinho was desperately poor today. Didnt add anything at all. There's a bunch of others who also didnt contribute much however they're mainly young players (and will therefore have off days) rather than someone who has a lot of international experience.

    We've had a decent season relative to my expectations; now looking forward to the summer and a bit of a clear-out

    If you were to grade Poch, what mark would you give him so far? Not an easy question I know. The defence has been woeful, but he's introduced youngsters and got extraordinary levels out of Kane. Ultimately I would say about par so far. Not bad but nothing special either.

  20. Mumorn

    vorm – 6

    walker – 2
    dier – 5
    chiriches – 6
    rose – 6

    mason – 4
    bentaleb – 4
    paulinho – 4

    eriksen – 5
    kane – 5
    chadli – 3

    About right for me, except I'd give Chadli a 4 because he got a couple of so-so attempts from range on target first half.

    Rose was our best player today.

  21. A starting line-up full of out of form players who looked less motivated than their opponents served up exactly what most predicted.

    Vorm 7 – good performance from him for the most part. One excellent save.
    Walker 4 – His form is not great but what I noticed most today was his indecision at crucial times with the ball at his feet
    Dier 7 – a confidence building outing
    Chiriches 7 – solid performance and only one crazy Chiriches moment I can remember (which came off)
    Rose 8 – played with more commitment than anyone on the pitch (in a Spurs shirt)
    Mason 4 – another sub par outing
    Bentaleb 4 – same as Mason.
    Erikson 6 – was involved but lots of wayward passing and shooting mixed in with some good stuff
    Paulhino 4 – there was a twenty minute spell where I forgot he was playing. Getting the ball and passing it back to the player who gave it to you is not enough. The one progressive run he made ended with a pathetic attempt at a shot. Should be be nowhere near the squad , let alone the team.
    Chadli 5 – started Ok but really didn't impact the game in a meaningful way.
    Kane 4 – didn't have a lot of support but made the wrong choices a lot when he did get the ball.

    Davies 7 – surprisingly good at CB.
    Lamela 5 – nearly setup Eriksen and did put a bit of effort in, which is more than can be said for a lot of his team-mates.
    Townsend ? did he touch the ball

    Poch 4 – poor starting line up and could have made the subs a bit earlier.

  22. braineclipse

    Compared to who?

    Compared to Townsend, who he replaced in the starting line-up, he most certainly does.

    Huh? Paulinho is dogbrick- offers zero defending or going forward – worst player on the pitch today easy …… Again

  23. Maltese Falcon

    Paulinho did SFA but he was still better than Mason, Bentaleb, Eriksen and Chadli…

    How? I Agree on them being bad today but Paul still can't pass a ball forward, control under pressure or win a 50/50 – sonething the aforementioned did all game

  24. Maltese Falcon

    It's pretty obvious

    Paulinho came on against Leicester and had an excellent 30 minutes, and was crucial in regaining the advantage. So Poch, quite fairly, decided to give him a chance from the start. Why are people so baffled about that? That's what should always be the case… how else would players be motivated and assured that they would be given a fair crack?

    As I said, this escaped goating is frankly ridiculous. If Mason, Bentaleb, Eriksen and Chadli played anything more than abysmal, we would have had a great chance to win this. Anyone blaming Paulinho is way, way off track.

    You missed the point. I asked what POSITION Paulinho was playing and what formation the team was playing. So far no-one has deigned to answer that. I am therefore not entirely surprised the team shape was confusing to the team itself. That was what largely explained the inept display imo.

  25. Pirate55

    You missed the point. I asked what POSITION Paulinho was playing and what formation the team was playing. So far no-one has deigned to answer that. I am therefore not entirely surprised the team shape was confusing to the team itself. That was what largely explained the inept display imo.

    I asked the same in the OMT. It was a bloody shambles. Nobody in front of Walker on the right, Paulinho and Eriksen seemingly wandering everywhere to no effect, Chadli offering absolutely nothing what-so-ever.

  26. wiziwig

    Looks like our season will now peter out and whether we get EL or not, I'm not too fussed.
    I suspect Poch will be using the remaining games, to give those he's still undecided about one last chance

    I think he did that yesterday – it was a dead rubber line-up/performance

    As long as Liverpool and Arsenal don't both screw up the FA cup, 7th will be EL anyway. The one thing left to play for now is 5th and 6th get less qualifying rounds

  27. Gutter Boy

    I think he did that yesterday – it was a dead rubber line-up/performance

    As long as Liverpool and Arsenal don't both screw up the FA cup, 7th will be EL anyway. The one thing left to play for now is 5th and 6th get less qualifying rounds

    So we have to aim for 8th?

  28. Gutter Boy

    I think he did that yesterday – it was a dead rubber line-up/performance

    As long as Liverpool and Arsenal don't both screw up the FA cup, 7th will be EL anyway. The one thing left to play for now is 5th and 6th get less qualifying rounds

    Which basically means we come back for pre-season about 2 weeks after the season finishes.

  29. Jurgen the German

    If you were to grade Poch, what mark would you give him so far? Not an easy question I know. The defence has been woeful, but he's introduced youngsters and got extraordinary levels out of Kane. Ultimately I would say about par so far. Not bad but nothing special either.

    You have to add some context into your assessment. It's his first season, several young players from the academy, other young players like Dier playing regularly only 1 useful striker. He has got us to a cup final and we are currently 6th with everyone around us including southampton having spent more in the summer. Also We don't brick ourselves every time we face a top 4 side. I would say that is more than par? I think Spurs fans need to be a bit more realistic personally.

  30. Jurgen the German

    If you were to grade Poch, what mark would you give him so far? Not an easy question I know. The defence has been woeful, but he's introduced youngsters and got extraordinary levels out of Kane. Ultimately I would say about par so far. Not bad but nothing special either.

    I think that to do a fair assessment of Poch's first season you have to first acknowledge that he is the first manager that we have had in recent years who has bought into the club's business model and made full use of the academy. I think that it is remarkable that he has managed to successfully introduce so many young players and we have not heard a word of dissent from any of the more senior players who have been sidelined.

    It has been a little disappointing how our season has petered out a little but the season only looks like a failure if your starting point is mid-season. At the beginning of the year most of us would have been delighted with what we have achieved. I think that he has done a brilliant job of laying the foundations this season which was what most of us had said was our aim for the season. There is work to be done in the summer but I have not been this confident that we are heading in the right direction for years.

  31. Gutter Boy

    I think he did that yesterday – it was a dead rubber line-up/performance

    As long as Liverpool and Arsenal don't both screw up the FA cup, 7th will be EL anyway. The one thing left to play for now is 5th and 6th get less qualifying rounds

    I'll be more than happy, taking a chance on Reading winning the FA Cup..:)

  32. Pirate55

    If you couldn't see how impotent we were in attack – then I give up!

    If you cannot see the context of my post then probably you should give up…

    Pirate55

    My reply was to Brain, and I agree with you that the entire attacking unit was poor today. He was trying to excuse Poch for playing Paulinho in order to try and solidify the defence. So was he playing DM?

    I still want to know if anyone can work out our formation today?

    Paulinho wasn't playing DM. The idea that for a midfielder to have a defensive impact he has to play DM is rather silly.

    Jurgen the German

    Ever heard the term a "even a blind squirrel finds an acorn once in a while"? That's not a dig at Poch btw, it was meant for our woeful defence. Are we meant to be pleased that we scraped a hard fought draw against the third worst team in the league? Added to the inept display against Leicester last game.

    I don't have that much of a problem with Poch playing Paulinho, let's face it, besides Eriksen and Chadli, the rest of the attacking midfield have ranged from dreaful to average. But, in general, I do find his substitutions to be a bit strange and ill timed. He's the manager, so ultimately the buck stops with him, but the players do have to shoulder a lot of the blame for today also. Chadli and Paulinho seem to be the fall guys, but I thought Mason and Bentaleb were equally poor. I don't quite get what the fuss is about with those two If I am honest. Well Bentaleb I kind of get the hype, he's good on the ball, but just don't really see Mason as anything more than a squad player. Grimsby posted that they offer nothing going forward and no solidity, I don't quite feel as strongly, but I do see where he is coming from.

    No I don't think it's quite good enough. But I also think that a draw away against a hard battling relegation struggling side is awful.

    It's more of the same to be honest, we struggle to create chances against hard working well organized teams. Particularly when, as you say, Mason and Bentaleb struggle to get our passing game going.

  33. braineclipse

    If you cannot see the context of my post then probably you should give up…

    Paulinho wasn't playing DM. The idea that for a midfielder to have a defensive impact he has to play DM is rather silly.?

    Please enlighten me. Where do you think Paulinho was playing? And what formation were we playing against Burnley?

  34. Pirate55

    Please enlighten me. Where do you think Paulinho was playing? And what formation were we playing against Burnley?

    Either a 4-2-3-1 or a 4-3-3, depending on how you see it. If you want to describe Paulinho playing in the hole in a 4-2-3-1 with Mason and Bentaleb in the deeper midfield roles I think that's accurate enough. Can also be described as a 4-3-3 (or 4-1-2-3/4-1-2-2-1 if you prefer) with Bentaleb as the holding midfielder, but Paulinho with significantly more attacking freedom than Mason – both in the two box to box midfield positions.

    Either way Paulinho was playing a fairly advanced midfield role, nothing like a defensive midfielder. He did however have, and fulfill, defensive aspects in that role. Bringing him into that attacking midfield trio (or as an additional central midfielder in a 4-3-3 if you prefer) made us more solid, both our back 4 and Bentaleb/Mason were less exposed as a result.

  35. Maltese Falcon

    I agree that Paulinho came in as the most advanced midfielder in the trio but Bentaleb and especially Mason were so poor and impotent that he was sucked back to fill in for their deficiencies

    Nail on the head.

  36. We certainly looked more solid because of the extra body in the middle but the cost to our overall game plan (if we had one) was too high. Paulinho dropping deeper than expected helped nullify the space in the middle of the park but that's it. His inclusion completely stifled us going forward and his recycling of possession backwards or sideways is completely pointless most times.

    Kane played poorly also but his wingman was nowhere to be seen most of the match which didn't help. Having one less forward passing option didn't help Mason or Bentaleb either IMO. Although he wasn't the worst player on the pitch I think Paulinho's introduction and subsequent positioning was the route cause of our turgidity (oh yeah that's my new word).

  37. Rorschach

    We certainly looked more solid because of the extra body in the middle but the cost to our overall game plan (if we had one) was too high. Paulinho dropping deeper than expected helped nullify the space in the middle of the park but that's it. His inclusion completely stifled us going forward and his recycling of possession backwards or sideways is completely pointless most times.

    Kane played poorly also but his wingman was nowhere to be seen most of the match which didn't help. Having one less forward passing option didn't help Mason or Bentaleb either IMO. Although he wasn't the worst player on the pitch I think Paulinho's introduction and subsequent positioning was the route cause of our turgidity (oh yeah that's my new word).

    Our attacking problems in this game were not some new thing resulting from Paulinho being included. Us struggling to create chances against hard working well organized teams is not some new phenomenon, and there were way too many players having off days to conclude that it was Paulinho's inclusion that stifled us. It's as ridiculous as saying that Townsend's absence stifled us.

  38. braineclipse

    Our attacking problems in this game were not some new thing resulting from Paulinho being included. Us struggling to create chances against hard working well organized teams is not some new phenomenon, and there were way too many players having off days to conclude that it was Paulinho's inclusion that stifled us. It's as ridiculous as saying that Townsend's absence stifled us.

    Ridiculous? Nice.

    Paulinho's inclusion and position did cause us to lose our attacking shape and resulted in us looking rather toothless IMO. Our usual formation was changed, albeit not radically, and frankly it looked like we didn't deal with with the change well. I think that was the root cause of a lot of our problems in this game, certainly going forward. Now you can bring up other games where we were poor against teams like Burnley and throw in the always contentious Townsend but they are red herrings.

  39. Rorschach

    Ridiculous? Nice.

    Paulinho's inclusion and position did cause us to lose our attacking shape and resulted in us looking rather toothless IMO. Our usual formation was changed, albeit not radically, and frankly it looked like we didn't deal with with the change well. I think that was the root cause of a lot of our problems in this game, certainly going forward. Now you can bring up other games where we were poor against teams like Burnley and throw in the always contentious Townsend but they are red herrings.

    Ridiculous was a bit harsh. Sorry about that.

    Continue to disagree about your conclusion though. It's just not warranted to make a conclusion like that when several players underperformed, we made several changes, and we've seen similar performances in the past. Other performances and other changes being made are not red herrings…

  40. braineclipse

    Either a 4-2-3-1 or a 4-3-3, depending on how you see it. If you want to describe Paulinho playing in the hole in a 4-2-3-1 with Mason and Bentaleb in the deeper midfield roles I think that's accurate enough. Can also be described as a 4-3-3 (or 4-1-2-3/4-1-2-2-1 if you prefer) with Bentaleb as the holding midfielder, but Paulinho with significantly more attacking freedom than Mason – both in the two box to box midfield positions.

    Either way Paulinho was playing a fairly advanced midfield role, nothing like a defensive midfielder. He did however have, and fulfill, defensive aspects in that role. Bringing him into that attacking midfield trio (or as an additional central midfielder in a 4-3-3 if you prefer) made us more solid, both our back 4 and Bentaleb/Mason were less exposed as a result.

    Your reply demonstrates my point beautifully. Having played a fairly regimented 4231 virtually all season, we suddenly change formation to accommodate Paulinho. No one it seems knew what their roles were. This threw everything into confusion imo and was a significant contributory factor to our inept performance. As other have said Paulinho was sucked so deep, he was often behind Bentelab and Mason. Where he wasn't , was contributing to our attacking in any meaningful way. I hardly recall him, or any of the midfielders for that matter, getting up and past Kane, who looked sadly far too isolated.

  41. Pirate55

    Your reply demonstrates my point beautifully. Having played a fairly regimented 4231 virtually all season, we suddenly change formation to accommodate Paulinho. No one it seems knew what their roles were. This threw everything into confusion imo and was a significant contributory factor to our inept performance. As other have said Paulinho was sucked so deep, he was often behind Bentelab and Mason. Where he wasn't , was contributing to our attacking in any meaningful way. I hardly recall him, or any of the midfielders for that matter, getting up and past Kane, who looked sadly far too isolated.

    Or you didn't understand what was going on without Pochettino getting it wrong…

    For me it seemed like Paulinho was brought in because he did well against Leicester, and because we needed more work rate and defensive discipline than Townsend had offered in recent weeks/months. He did contribute defensively, quite considerably so and we looked much more solid. Going forward he had an off day, like most of our team. Actually probably not as much as some others.

    Haven't you been one of those complaining about Pochettino sticking too much to one "regimented" formation. We've been conceding too much, he changes the team, we become more solid. But it wasn't the specific change you wanted, you don't understand what's going on, so obviously he got it wrong?

  42. braineclipse

    Or you didn't understand what was going on without Pochettino getting it wrong…

    For me it seemed like Paulinho was brought in because he did well against Leicester, and because we needed more work rate and defensive discipline than Townsend had offered in recent weeks/months. He did contribute defensively, quite considerably so and we looked much more solid. Going forward he had an off day, like most of our team. Actually probably not as much as some others.

    Haven't you been one of those complaining about Pochettino sticking too much to one "regimented" formation. We've been conceding too much, he changes the team, we become more solid. But it wasn't the specific change you wanted, you don't understand what's going on, so obviously he got it wrong?

    You are right, I don't want to see a regimented 4231, especially when it isn't working. But to change it without the players understanding their roles is even worse. Others ( I think you are one of them) want us to play 4231 regardless at it is seen as the "Poch way" and have argued against any change whatsoever so the players get used to this system. Any change for them should be like for like rather that systemic change. Hence, either Lamela or Townsend for the right hand AM.

    I have no objection to Paulinho per se, although I don't particularly rate him, I certainly don't see how he can play in a 4231. If he is one of the two, he is not good enough defensively, if he is the centre one of the three, he is not creatve enough. If Bentelab were to be designated the DM then , I could see him playing in a box to box role together with Mason, but this didn't happen against Burnley. With Eriksen shunted out to the right, we simply compromised all our creativity.

    We have now failed to score in 4 out of our last seven games. Previously.we had been far too reliant on Kane and Eriksen to come up with late late goals. We desperately need to improve our creativity as well as solidify our defence. Chadli has largely gone missing in action since his return from leave. Townsend and Lamela seem to be playing in the straight jackets imposed by the 4231. Huge improvement required both of the players and the tactics imo.

  43. Pirate55

    You are right, I don't want to see a regimented 4231, especially when it isn't working. But to change it without the players understanding their roles is even worse. Others ( I think you are one of them) want us to play 4231 regardless at it is seen as the "Poch way" and have argued against any change whatsoever so the players get used to this system. Any change for them should be like for like rather that systemic change. Hence, either Lamela or Townsend for the right hand AM.

    I have no objection to Paulinho per se, although I don't particularly rate him, I certainly don't see how he can play in a 4231. If he is one of the two, he is not good enough defensively, if he is the centre one of the three, he is not creatve enough. If Bentelab were to be designated the DM then , I could see him playing in a box to box role together with Mason, but this didn't happen against Burnley. With Eriksen shunted out to the right, we simply compromised all our creativity.

    We have now failed to score in 4 out of our last seven games. Previously.we had been far too reliant on Kane and Eriksen to come up with late late goals. We desperately need to improve our creativity as well as solidify our defence. Chadli has largely gone missing in action since his return from leave. Townsend and Lamela seem to be playing in the straight jackets imposed by the 4231. Huge improvement required both of the players and the tactics imo.

    You're misrepresenting my opinion and what I've argued in the past.

    We sacrificed some creativity for more solidity defensively. You say we haven't scored enough or created enough chances, to a large extent I agree. But we've also been way too open defensively and we were without both Verthongen and Lloris against Burnley. Again, the move by Pochettino worked – we looked more solid defensively. The defensive solidity for creativity trade off seems perfectly reasonable to me.

    Just because you're not capable of describing the formation we're playing doesn't mean that Pochettino made a mistake.

  44. braineclipse

    You're misrepresenting my opinion and what I've argued in the past.

    We sacrificed some creativity for more solidity defensively. You say we haven't scored enough or created enough chances, to a large extent I agree. But we've also been way too open defensively and we were without both Verthongen and Lloris against Burnley. Again, the move by Pochettino worked – we looked more solid defensively. The defensive solidity for creativity trade off seems perfectly reasonable to me.

    Just because you're not capable of describing the formation we're playing doesn't mean that Pochettino made a mistake.

    I can't describe the formation we played and neither it seems can you. It could be any number of variations you describe. My point is it was a mess. Was it a mistake by Poch? To me, too many players didn't seem to know where they were playing and what they were doing. Was it made explicit to them? Who knows? What I do know is that it produced a turgid performance. Burnley had more and better chances than us, so we weren't too good defensively and Vorm had to make a few decent saves. Furthermore, we created diddly squat offensively. So the "experiment" of playing Paulinho somewhere that I ( and the team) couldnt readily comprehend was hardly a resounding success.

    I don't want more of the same thank you?

  45. Pirate55

    I can't describe the formation we played and neither it seems can you. It could be any number of variations you describe. My point is it was a mess. Was it a mistake by Poch? To me, too many players didn't seem to know where they were playing and what they were doing. Was it made explicit to them? Who knows? What I do know is that it produced a turgid performance. Burnley had more and better chances than us, so we weren't too good defensively and Vorm had to make a few decent saves. Furthermore, we created diddly squat offensively. So the "experiment" of playing Paulinho somewhere that I ( and the team) couldnt readily comprehend was hardly a resounding success.

    I don't want more of the same thank you?

    I can, I already have, but feel free to continue to ignore that.

    Were we good enough? No, as I've already said. But of course, continue to argue as if I'm claiming that we were overall good in the game.

    Is it fair to blame the relatively poor performance on Paulinho and Pochettino's choice to start him? In my opinion, no.

  46. braineclipse

    I can, I already have, but feel free to continue to ignore that.

    Were we good enough? No, as I've already said. But of course, continue to argue as if I'm claiming that we were overall good in the game.

    Is it fair to blame the relatively poor performance on Paulinho and Pochettino's choice to start him? In my opinion, no.

    No, you listed three different formations.i said that if you could not identify THE formation we were playing, then it really isn't surprising the players looked confused. Hence the dismal performance. BTW, I didn't blame it all on Paulinho, who played no worse than a whole host of others. Indeed, if Poch had used Bentelab as a designated DM and Mason and Paulinho as genuine box to box midfielders, I would Have seen some sense as I could see that might give us more attacking potency.

    However, what I objected to was Paulinho plonked somewhere ( still not sure where) which completely upset our rythm and led directly imo to the poor overall display with Eriksen in particular played well out of position.

  47. Pirate55

    No, you listed three different formations.i said that if you could not identify THE formation we were playing, then it really isn't surprising the players looked confused. Hence the dismal performance. BTW, I didn't blame it all on Paulinho, who played no worse than a whole host of others. Indeed, if Poch had used Bentelab as a designated DM and Mason and Paulinho as genuine box to box midfielders, I would Have seen some sense as I could see that might give us more attacking potency.

    However, what I objected to was Paulinho plonked somewhere ( still not sure where) which completely upset our rythm and led directly imo to the poor overall display with Eriksen in particular played well out of position.

    This is just a continuation of our previous disagreement on the importance of formations.

    You believe that unless a manager sets a team up in a formation that most fans can easily recognize a mistake has been made?

  48. Robspur12

    You have to add some context into your assessment. It's his first season, several young players from the academy, other young players like Dier playing regularly only 1 useful striker. He has got us to a cup final and we are currently 6th with everyone around us including southampton having spent more in the summer. Also We don't crud ourselves every time we face a top 4 side. I would say that is more than par? I think Spurs fans need to be a bit more realistic personally.

    I'm realistic and willing to give him time, but I would say he's done some very good work and some not so good work.

    Ultimately I look at the league position, we are about where we should be.

  49. Jurgen the German

    I'm realistic and willing to give him time, but I would say he's done some very good work and some not so good work.

    Ultimately I look at the league position, we are about where we should be.

    About where we expect to be in the league whilst overseeing the changes that have made us 'the youngest team in Europe' ™. Certainly sets us up for a lot of potential improvement over the coming seasons.

  50. Jurgen the German

    I'm realistic and willing to give him time, but I would say he's done some very good work and some not so good work.

    Ultimately I look at the league position, we are about where we should be.

    I actually think that's underselling things a little bit. But that's just my view. If we'd finished 9th or 10th this season I wouldn't have seen it as the end of the world (though this place would have gone into complete meltdown! :) ). I think the whole Redknapp > AVB > Sherwood transition was very damaging to the club behind the scenes. We can all pick our heroes and villains out of what happened, but when Pochettino came in, I think he had a much tougher job than is often acknowledged. There appears to have been quite significant unrest between cliques of players – bad enough to have ended up with the virtual exile of the club captain and vice-captain… on top of all manner of distracting shenanigans in the boardroom, newspapers and courts… and of course the usual pressures and media scrutiny of taking over Tottenham Hotspur.

    All of that stuff, along with a squad that is very young and still clearly "in development", means I think Poch has done a great job to keep us where we are. Has he been 100% error-free? Of course not. Is there room for improvement? Goes without saying. But the signs are very positive for next year in my view.

  51. braineclipse

    This is just a continuation of our previous disagreement on the importance of formations.

    You believe that unless a manager sets a team up in a formation that most fans can easily recognize a mistake has been made?

    As said in another thread there is too much strength ( by some) into formations and they can get in the way of reality.

  52. braineclipse

    This is just a continuation of our previous disagreement on the importance of formations.

    You believe that unless a manager sets a team up in a formation that most fans can easily recognize a mistake has been made?

    Formations in and of themselves are not necessarily the most important thing. However the way Poch has stuck to 4231 with almost religious zeal has imo made us one dimensional, predictable and relatively easy to play against. It seems to me that in this rigid formation we are not getting the best out of some players, especially those with natural flair.

    When things aren't working in 4231, I would prefer to see other tactics used – to give some examples – deploying just one specialist DM to cover the back four, switching wingers to their natural sides, and bringing in another striker to assist Kane. I would like to see other options tried in some games, not just more of the same.

  53. Pirate55

    Formations in and of themselves are not necessarily the most important thing. However the way Poch has stuck to 4231 with almost religious zeal has imo made us one dimensional, predictable and relatively easy to play against. It seems to me that in this rigid formation we are not getting the best out of some players, especially those with natural flair.

    When things aren't working in 4231, I would prefer to see other tactics used – to give some examples – deploying just one specialist DM to cover the back four, switching wingers to their natural sides, and bringing in another striker to assist Kane. I would like to see other options tried in some games, not just more of the same.

    Ignore my question. Get a dig in at Pochettino at the same time. Use tactics and formation interchangeably, despite knowing that our conversation and previous disagreement has been on the importance of formations and that I've argued that we have used different tactics.

    We really are going around in circles…

  54. braineclipse

    Ignore my question. Get a dig in at Pochettino at the same time. Use tactics and formation interchangeably, despite knowing that our conversation and previous disagreement has been on the importance of formations and that I've argued that we have used different tactics.

    We really are going around in circles…

    Your question was so opaque that it really didn't deserve an answer. How can I or anyone else know what other fans can or can't recognise?

    Anyway, I agree we are going round in circles. I think we are too regimented in 4231, you don't. Fair enough. Let's see how next season pans out. I am reserving judgement on Poch till then.

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