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LondonBristolian

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LondonBristolian last won the day on June 8

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  1. Priority Poll - Forest or Manchester?

    In a wider sense, yes. It's a brilliant memory, of course, and those are part of the experience of supporting a team. And most seasons this is exactly the sort of thing I'd love and want to win. But I think the difference with Liverpool was: a) the FA cup has a bit more cache. b) we were having a bit of a dead-end season and it was a welcome highlight. c) There were not the same issues with fixture pile-up and injuries. Don't get me wrong - I don't want us to lose any games but ultimately I fear we just cannot put our strongest team out for every game over the coming weeks and, at least going into Forest, the players have had a week's rest whereas - after United - they only have three days to recover. And I think in this division small margins - that 1% or 2% of fitness - really, really matter and can really influence results. What it ultimately comes down to me is: a) would I feel more gutted if we lost to United? or b) would I feel more gutted if we missed out on the play-offs by a point? And it is the latter for me by far. Still bloody excited about the United game, mind!
  2. Priority Poll - Forest or Manchester?

    I honestly think playing the stronger side against Forest and QPR and resting players against Man Utd could be the difference between winning 2 and losing 1 or winning 1 and losing 2. Every point could be vital at the end of the season. It's cynical and it's not very romantic but I'd prioritise a viable run at the Premier League over a win in a cup quarter final. If we do beat United, my view changes completely and I'd want us to go all out for the semi-finals as a chance at a final is not to be sniffed at but a Man Utd result is pleasant but meaningless if we get walloped in a semi-final instead. Plus, by the semi-finals, we will hopefully have some players back and added to the squad. Don't get me wrong - I hate the fact we have to prioritise and it is ludicrous how congested fixture schedules get at this time but they are what they are and I'd value being pragmatic over being sentimental.
  3. Chris Froome

    I've a degree of sympathy, although obviously that may change once more is known. If he broke the rules then he has to be punished but, on the face of it, it sounds like taking more than permitted of a drug he was using for medicinal purposes rather than an intentional attempt to cheat.
  4. Fearing these injuries will do us...

    Indeed.I think Eliasson is an outstanding prospect - quick and skilful with a super cross on him. It is going to take time before he is consistent but I think it is harder for young wingers to be consistent than any other position and the problem is that, until a player really clicks so beats his man and gets the delivery right each time, he will always look a bit underwhelming. I remember shortly after Bolasie came to the club - may have been away to Millwall -he got the ball on the edge of the box and literally ran it over the goal line. It looked ridiculous but we judged him too early and missed out on a great player. If someone told me that one day we would sell a current member of our squad for £30m+ and asked me to guess who it was, Eliasson is where my money would go. There is a long, long way to go until he gets to that point and it may never happen but I really think he has the potential.
  5. Fearing these injuries will do us...

    Being a bit controversial here but do you think, if injuries do not abate in the next two weeks, LJ needs to start to decide which games to prioritise? I hate it as a concept but i cannot see how we are going to have the energy to play forest, Man Utd four days later, QPR three days later, Reading three days and that, Wolves four days after that and Villa two days later with the squad as threadbare as it is. i wonder if we need to heavily rotate the squad, even if it means throwing kids in at the deep end, against Man Utd and at least one other game (depressingly Wolves is the obvious one given where it comes in the fixture calendar). I absolutely hate the idea of not putting our best team on the pitch for every single fixture but I fear if we do put out our strongest XI that many times in that many games, we’ll end up with a knackered and below par team that struggles to deliver against Reading, Wolves or Villa and a greater risk of further injuries...
  6. I don’t want January

    This might sound arrogant and/or ridiculous but - whilst I hope we don’t lose any players - we keep losing players to injury and getting results so - as long as we move quickly for replacements - I see no reason we cannot adjust. In the summer we were all terrified of the consequences of not having Tammy. Reid stepped up. There is not a player in the squad I would want to lose but neither is there a single player we rely on and could not cope without. Plus the management and scouting team seem to be on the ball these days and I am confident we can get players in if we need to, especially with our league position. Yes, January is an anxious time but I think we are far more likely to gain than lose from the transfer window...
  7. So...if the unthinkable happened and we got promotion...

    I hope a lot of players could hold their own but I'm not one for sentiment. We tried that for the first few months when we got promoted under Cotts and found ourselves in the relegation zone. If players can shape up, great. If we can get players in who improve the squad, get them in. That said, I don't think the gap between the Premier League and the Championship is as big as it once was. I reckon a few key additions and we'd have a fighting chance of staying up.
  8. Duric...

    I think Lucic is injured too isn’t he? Even if he isn’t we don’t want more than one keeper on the bench and, if we take him and O’Leaey our the equation based on Steele being back-up keeper, we have a full team plus subs bench for league games and two free spaces in the league cup. And the games are about to come thick and fast. Yikes!
  9. Paterson SUBBED due to hamstring injury

    I think the difference with Klopp, at least at Liverpool, is he joined mid-season so players had to achieve levels of fitness and intensity without time to prepare. Johnson has had the pre-season plus a season and a half before and presumably has signed players who have the necessary qualities so it should be less of an issue for us. I honestly think most of the injuries this season have been simply bad luck rather than a wider pattern.
  10. Paterson SUBBED due to hamstring injury

    It also raises a question of what we do over Christmas. Games run closely together. From 16th onwards the run between games is 4 days, then 3 days, then 3 days, then 4 days, then 2 days. That's 5 games over 16 days and ironically the only one that isn't crucially important is the Man Utd game. We are doing brilliantly but we are either going to have rotate dramatically or find a Plan B - we are not going to be able to keep that intensity up for 90 minutes that many times in a short space of time.
  11. Let's not make the same mistake as 2008. Splash the cash!

    Really good post. I was looking at the table yesterday and realised that - whilst i’m not by any means confident we are going to go up- I really can’t see any reason why we can’t. In 07-08, it always felt like we were punching above our weight. We got walloped at Ipswich and ultimately had no squad depth so an injury in the final basically scuppered our chances. This season we spent the first four weeks without one of our best defenders, have had long term injuries to two of our key summer signings and - first half v Leeds aside - the squad has held up. Whenever we lose, we bounce back and we’ve gone to a recently relegated premier league team, played terribly and still got a dramatic victory. On top of which our second XI has knocked half the premier league out the League Cup. Wolves look like winning the league. But after that? Villa are probably favourites but are prone to a bad performance, Derby are inconsistent, I honestly don’t think Cardiff are better than we are (though Warnock is a wily Manager), Sheffield Utd must be as surprised as we are to be where they are and everyone else is a few points behind us. There is a long way to go and anything could happen. We may be unlucky or our form could drop off. Other teams may improve dramatically and us not keep up. But, at the moment, I think we are where we deserve to be and I see no reason why we can’t compete again next season if this year does not pan out.
  12. Let's not make the same mistake as 2008. Splash the cash!

    I'd agree. I think we can take a (calculated) risk and invest heavily on a player who will make a real difference. Arguably, depending on how Pisano and Diedhiou are getting on, we need loan signings to cover their positions but I think I'd like us to spend the bulk (and maybe even all) of the sum available on a quality central midfielder. I honestly think that could be the difference.
  13. Let's not make the same mistake as 2008. Splash the cash!

    Not surprised. I'm willing to double that out of my own pocket if it helps us get him!
  14. Let's not make the same mistake as 2008. Splash the cash!

    I think we need one more striker - in my head I'm thinking a big, veteran target man. Good work ethic, plenty of Championship experience and who has been there and seen it all. Not necessarily an out and out striker - more someone who can create chances and space for the guy next to him. In fact, the more I think about it only one man fits the bill...
  15. Fa Cup 3rd Round - Watford Away (again)

    I want an easy home game where we can rotate the squad and comfortably progress. We've got a lot of games over Christmas/New Year we need points from so I want this to be as straightforward as possible.
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