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So with an injury list as long as your arm, how do we set up for the Boro game? 442 with Moore & Baker as centre backs or a back 3 (if Williams is ready)?

The front pairing of Diedhiou and Afobe looked interesting with the support of Weimann behind them.

Depending on formation, that leaves 2 or 3 midfield spots.  Massengo, Brownhill and Palmer perhaps? though including Palmer probably means that Weimann has to play on the wing again.  I was wondering if he would be better cutting in from the left wing rather than running down the right.

Do we set up for a home game or away game looking to produce the away form that has been so good at the Gate?

Or wilk Lee surprise both us and Boro with a completely off the wall unexpected approach?

Any other likely permutations or thoughts as we approach the game?

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I think it’s unlikely Williams will be rushed, so I don’t see him starting. If we assume Kalas is out then it’s 4 at the back for me, on the basis of square pegs for square holes. 

However, I then think that makes it a 4-5-1 (shudders as recalls Leeds game). I’d want the extra midfielder for protection as Rowe is not a natural FB and to account for Hunts forward mentality.

That gives me:

GK: Bentley

RB: Hunt

LB: Rowe

CB: Moore

CB: Baker

CM: Massengo

CM: Brownhill

CM: Palmer 

AM: Weimann

AM: Eliasson 

CF: Afobe 

Eliasson and Weimann not necessarily right/left but pulling as the game/shape demands 

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Weimann on ybq wing though he can play it, isn't great. Inhibits us and him quite a bit.

Not a great fan of 4-4-2 due to problems in possession- not just us, as a modern proactive formation that looks to dominate but then again we haven't necessarily dominated the ball for most of this season so far so if counterpressing and looking to spring the opposition it could work in our favour- may not be the worst way to go in some respects given Weimann, Afobe and Palmer, and the dynamism in the final third, plus of course all the injuries.

Might be a game to consider Walsh in a 3? Impressed at QPR despite 4-4-2 not being his ideal shape. A central 3 would help to accentuate some of his strengths, while helping to covet some of his weaker points.

Edited by Mr Popodopolous
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1 minute ago, Robbored said:

Without Kalas I’d expect to see a flat back four. 

Pereira, Moore, Baker, Hunt.

I can’t see any other options that LJ has.

Well, the other option is to play Williams central in a back three.

Doubtful but entirely possible.

There's also the other doubtful option of Kalas not being too badly injured and ok for the game (yeah clutching at straws).

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6 minutes ago, Gillies Downs Leeds said:

What about Rowe?

Rowe is versatile and could play as a DM in a four across midfield with Palmer, Brownhill, Messengo 

That said, LJ will probably surprise us all and come with a starting 11 none us expected.

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If only O’Dowda would sign a contract, then I think you could go 4312 (very Football Manager):

Bentley

Hunt | Moore | Baker | Rowe

Brownhill | Massengo | O’Dowda

Palmer

Weimann | Afobe

If Williams was ready, then I think we go to 5212 (Palmer, Weimann and Afobe in the 1-2).

We might know more as the week goes on.

Just now, Davefevs said:

If only O’Dowda would sign a contract, then I think you could go 4312 (very Football Manager):

Bentley

Hunt | Moore | Baker | Rowe

Brownhill | Massengo | O’Dowda

Palmer

Weimann | Afobe

If Williams was ready, then I think we go to 5212 (Palmer, Weimann and Afobe in the 1-2).

We might know more as the week goes on.

Or you could play Pereira LB and Rowe for O’Dowda as RR suggests but I think we need as little change as poss.

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15 minutes ago, Red Right Hand said:

How do Boro set up?

4-3-3 under Woodgate.

Play more football than under Pulis. Not that hard, granted!

Unsure if it's 3 outright forwards, Assombolonga with wide forwards or Assombolonga and 2 wingers.

Additionally, unsure if it's 4-3-3 with orthodox full backs, 4 CBs or inverted ones.

Basically seems to be a 4-3-3 and with more of a footballing ethos, Assombolonga the centre of the front 3- the specifics, not so sure on.

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25 minutes ago, Davefevs said:

4231 in game prior to Saturday.

6FCE2F78-EE29-4045-8AFE-A04EAC59ECE0.jpeg

That's an interesting setup by Woodgate!

Howson RB, Shotton CB, can't say know much about Bola or Browne, yet Fletcher on the other wide forward side obviously able to come inside- pretty fluid?

To also add, reckon Woodgate at this early stage likely to be fluctuating between 4-2-3-1 and 4-3-3...about to read the scouting report!

 

Edited by Mr Popodopolous
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I wonder if LJ will be careful with Massengo. As good as he has been he is only 18 and after two tough away games you have to think about the physical demands of the games the likes of which he would not know yet.

Maybe see Hunt and Pereira full backs and Rowe in with Brownhill?

Could be my first game of the season this weekend so would love to see Massengo starting though!

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53 minutes ago, formerly known as ivan said:

I wonder if LJ will be careful with Massengo. As good as he has been he is only 18 and after two tough away games you have to think about the physical demands of the games the likes of which he would not know yet.

Maybe see Hunt and Pereira full backs and Rowe in with Brownhill?

Could be my first game of the season this weekend so would love to see Massengo starting though!

Think with a week between fixtures and LJ giving them today off, and a slightly lighter load this week, he’ll be fine.  International break after that....no idea if age group fixtures that week?

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How about, something like:

            Bentley

Hunt Moore Baker Rowe

Brownhill Massengo Walsh 

              Palmer

     Weimann Afobe

Way I see that is it brings out the best in Walsh, his undoubted attributes but at the same time that extra man plus the ability of Rowe to step inside into CM can mask some of his weaknesses.

The front 3 picks itself right now- seems to be a great chemistry already and it should only get better over time.

Mobility of all 3 of those- plus the directness of Palmer and Weimann especially, all good.

Plus Weimann can pull wider- not as a wingfer say but first line of defence hih up and so can Afobe- that can both help us centrally and perhaps also mitigate the risk of 2 v 1, especially on Rowe's side. Brownhill may help cover the right, Weimann the left- not fully ideal but Weimann pressing high can [perhaps help buy a bit of time to get back into a structure when we lose the ball.

Unless Kalas 100% fit, I wouldn't necessarily risk him- certainly not to start.

Cannot help but feel that Walsh- and he showed some impressive things at QPR, ie free kick goal and assist and a reasonably positive all round game too, yes he made a mistake but a central 2 isn't natural for him, perhaps isn't natural for a lot of modern midfielders- has a bigger part to play at times this season.

Great potential fluidity and versatility in that shape though, and the personnel- could be pretty flexible...4-3-1-2 a starting shape but could yield so much more.

Edited by Mr Popodopolous
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6 hours ago, Mr Popodopolous said:

How about, something like:

            Bentley

Hunt Moore Baker Rowe

Brownhill Massengo Walsh 

              Palmer

     Weimann Afobe

Way I see that is it brings out the best in Walsh, his undoubted attributes but at the same time that extra man plus the ability of Rowe to step inside into CM can mask some of his weaknesses.

The front 3 picks itself right now- seems to be a great chemistry already and it should only get better over time.

Mobility of all 3 of those- plus the directness of Palmer and Weimann especially, all good.

Plus Weimann can pull wider- not as a wingfer say but first line of defence hih up and so can Afobe- that can both help us centrally and perhaps also mitigate the risk of 2 v 1, especially on Rowe's side. Brownhill may help cover the right, Weimann the left- not fully ideal but Weimann pressing high can [perhaps help buy a bit of time to get back into a structure when we lose the ball.

Unless Kalas 100% fit, I wouldn't necessarily risk him- certainly not to start.

Cannot help but feel that Walsh- and he showed some impressive things at QPR, ie free kick goal and assist and a reasonably positive all round game too, yes he made a mistake but a central 2 isn't natural for him, perhaps isn't natural for a lot of modern midfielders- has a bigger part to play at times this season.

Great potential fluidity and versatility in that shape though, and the personnel- could be pretty flexible...4-3-1-2 a starting shape but could yield so much more.

The QPR game showed Walsh is not ready. He was defensively poor and lazy in tracking. 

He'll get there in the fullness of time and does some brilliant things going forward but our system is based on 10 outfield players pressing. The moment one shirks their responsibility, it doesn't work and leaves us far too exposed.

Edited by Sandhurst Red
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1 hour ago, Sandhurst Red said:

The QPR game showed Walsh is not ready. He was defensively poor and lazy in tracking. 

He'll get there in the fullness of time and does some brilliant things going forward but our system is based on 10 outfield players pressing. The moment one shirks their responsibility, it doesn't work and leaves us far too exposed.

In a 4-4-2 up v a central midfield 3, or generally crowded central areas- getting overloaded and the runaround centrally as we often did was IMO linked to the shape- 3 would leave us less exposed to being outnumbered, quick breaks.

How would you set up then?

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Having looked at Middlesbrough, their starting shape at least listed on Sky etc seems to either be 4-2-3-1/4-3-3.

Scouting report posted higher up thread also says 4-3-3/4-1-4-1. All 3 with certain players cab be fairly similar and merge into one on a matchday.

Howson (!) at RB if that is/was his average position feels like a position to target!

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