Date: 23rd June 2020 at 6:30am
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Written by northstandmark

The PL is a meat grinder that gets most promoted sides in the end. Over the 5 years, it’s eventually ground down the confidence and team spirit (and fitness judging by the last 2 years) of enough of our core squad to have reached a tipping point around Oct-Nov 2019, whereby it’s become a downward spiral since.

We might well still stay up, we’ve managed to rally ourselves for results over Brighton and Villa and a great performance at Liverpool. It’s the last splutterings of this squad, and a couple more might do it. But it doesn’t really matter which division we end up in, the issues at the club remain the same:

The players who are playing as entitled individuals looking for their big move, they need to be moved on.

The players who are just drained, need fresh blood to reinforce them and a fresh look at tactics to re-motivate them.

The players who have been waiting for their chance, blocked by underperforming ‘bigger name’ individuals, need to be given that chance.

Neither of survival or relegation changes these fundamental squad issues. Too much of this core squad and it’s playing style has reached the end of its natural shelf life, it has gone stale.

Not sure how long the summer between 19/20 and 20/21 will be, and how much time that affords the management to look at solving all this. Transfers are a complex business at this level and typically take weeks to complete. A lot will need to be done in a short space of time.

Your say…

SteveJonesLegend wrote…

Over the last 18 months, Eddie has continually struggled to work out his best formation, his best approach, and his best XI…

When we hit the Premier League he knows the answers to all 3 of the above, and this continued for a few seasons… The Gung Ho approach saw us attack, score a hatful, concede a hatful, but do enough to stay up… But somewhere along the way, the media circus, the pundits, maybe even Max got into Eddie’s ear and made him think we need to be better than doing just enough to stay up…

This has been to our detriment as Eddie has had to invest in players that perhaps are not up to what he wants to do, at this level… So the game plan has changed… and not for the best… He is caught between wanting one thing but having to do another, and I think the ‘one foot in one foot out’ approach has just confused everyone…

We’ve got a bunch of individuals that should be a lot better than recent results, however, One question is do the players we have really compliment each other and can you create a balanced XI with them…? I am not convinced

We have Left Backs galore sat on the bench yet we play 2 Right Backs… we’re overloaded with Left-sided central defenders and only Cook (and Franno) for Right-sided options…we have a bunch of central and defensive midfielders yet not one real attacking, goal-scoring midfielder amongst them… (anyone care to tell me how many goals our central midfield have scored in the last 18 months?)… We’ve 2 players in Brooks and H.Wilson crying out to be slotted in front of a midfield 2, yet ply their trade almost anonymously (H.Wilson) on the wing and Eddie seems scared to leave any of his miss-firing strikers on the bench…

Has Eddie run out of ideas or is that the players just aren’t the right ones for Eddie’s game plan… I still would rather Eddie at the helm as I do believe we will go down and I think after the £100m sell-off we should still have a decent foundation for Eddie to rebuild a unit from, and I would absolutely trust him to do that… However, he needs to sort this out and fast… Play players where they should be. Play players that compliment, and play players that are in form… – Join the conversation, click here.

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