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Whiskeyjack

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He turned down Ireland and plays for United. Doesn't really leave me any option except to hate him. As for other people, I always get the impression that English fans take out their frustration for the national team's underachievements on those who don't play for their own clubs, so any non-United loving English fans tend to dislike Rooney. Also, whiskey, I definitely wouldn't call him the best English player anymore, not even close. He doesn't start for England anymore, he hasn't been an automatic starter for the rags since the beginning of the season, and his form has been rough for a couple years now. I have a buddy who is a United fan, and he thinks that Rooney has been nothing but a major liability for the past two or three seasons.

No doubt. But I'm sure you recall that Beckham, Gerard, Lampard and Owen all played for England well past their primes, and continued to bear a disproportionate share of blame for the national team's underperformance. Rooney seems to be in that position now.

I have to admit that I haven't payed much attention to English football in recent years. Have we already identified Rooney's heir apparent?
 

fightingirish26

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No doubt. But I'm sure you recall that Beckham, Gerard, Lampard and Owen all played for England well past their primes, and continued to bear a disproportionate share of blame for the national team's underperformance. Rooney seems to be in that position now.

I have to admit that I haven't payed much attention to English football in recent years. Have we already identified Rooney's heir apparent?

Dele Alli perhaps? I was too young to know what was going on when Rooney broke out so I'm not sure how the hype between the two of them compares.
 
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ACamp1900

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I have to admit that I haven't payed much attention to English football in recent years.

post-57918-Denzel-Washington-my-man-gif-I-1KVs.gif
 

ACamp1900

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I really would have enjoyed 2010 as well but those damn plastic horns ruined half the games

Ha! Never in the history of sport, has so much been made of so little.

I honestly barely even noticed them. Lol. I truly thought the freak out over them was far more annoying. Just me.
 

Rocket89

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I have to admit that I haven't payed much attention to English football in recent years. Have we already identified Rooney's heir apparent?

Harry Kane was named the new England captain a couple weeks ago.

It'll probably be Dele Alli, though. Due to his combination of flare, position (CM who floats in behind the striker), talent at his age, and temper.
 

ACamp1900

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I would have guessed Kane, tho to my knowledge no one since has recieved the early hype Rooney got, dude was anointed, "Jesus Christ, Soccer Star"
 

Rogue219

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Man U v Chelsea was classic Mourinho yesterday. Chelsea player makes slightest bit of contact with Man U player, Man U player goes to ground. Vintage Jose squad.

Chelsea couldn't string 2 completed passes together. It was rough to watch. Kante has been poor recently, too, and thus their form has dropped some.

Spurs are in very good form right now. They've been given a lifeline too.

Liverpool grinds out another away win. They may not have a choice now. Interesting that as long as Matip and Lovren both start, Liverpool has yet to lose with that center half duo. James Milner doesn't cut it at left back, though. That's something they need to get fixed this summer if they're serious about mounting a challenge for the title.

3-7 in the table should be very interesting down the stretch. If Man U wins Europa, that puts another twist on things.
 

aubeirish

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Man U v Chelsea was classic Mourinho yesterday. Chelsea player makes slightest bit of contact with Man U player, Man U player goes to ground. Vintage Jose squad.

Chelsea couldn't string 2 completed passes together. It was rough to watch. Kante has been poor recently, too, and thus their form has dropped some.

Spurs are in very good form right now. They've been given a lifeline too.

Liverpool grinds out another away win. They may not have a choice now. Interesting that as long as Matip and Lovren both start, Liverpool has yet to lose with that center half duo. James Milner doesn't cut it at left back, though. That's something they need to get fixed this summer if they're serious about mounting a challenge for the title.

3-7 in the table should be very interesting down the stretch. If Man U wins Europa, that puts another twist on things.

I agree that they need to address this when the transfer market opens, but Milner has been nothing short of great at left back all season long. Even greater considering the position is new to him and left is not his natural foot.
 

Old Man Mike

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I'm not as smart as you guys, but I too thought Milner has been very good at that left back position, and often is how they get the ball up into the business end of the pitch --- and he seems to have a great workrate --- I'd have named him Captain too.

As to the centerbacks, they are doubtless good (I don't see the subtleties there yet like you folks, so I can't judge), but Liverpool as a whole doesn't seem to me to be physical enough. They look vulnerable on basically every sort of set piece, and aren't very robust on their set pieces either. They seem to have to beat you with their cleverness and skill (which is great as long as they have Lallana and Mane, but on-the-edge without them.)

I'd like to hear you guys thoughts on this, as I'm still learning especially the roughhouse part of the game which Liverpool seems to lack but most others don't --- have Klopp get the owner to buy those two Italian Hammers from Juventus?
 

Emcee77

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Man U v Chelsea was classic Mourinho yesterday. Chelsea player makes slightest bit of contact with Man U player, Man U player goes to ground. Vintage Jose squad.

Chelsea couldn't string 2 completed passes together. It was rough to watch. Kante has been poor recently, too, and thus their form has dropped some.

Spurs are in very good form right now. They've been given a lifeline too.

Liverpool grinds out another away win. They may not have a choice now. Interesting that as long as Matip and Lovren both start, Liverpool has yet to lose with that center half duo. James Milner doesn't cut it at left back, though. That's something they need to get fixed this summer if they're serious about mounting a challenge for the title.

3-7 in the table should be very interesting down the stretch. If Man U wins Europa, that puts another twist on things.

It sure does. Imagine this scenario: (1) Man City beats Man U and finishes strong to take third place; (2) Liverpool finishes strong too, but Man City have a game in hand on them, so Liverpool finishes in fourth, one point behind Man City; (3) Man U finish 5th but win Europa League; then (4) Leicester storm back in the second leg to stomp Athletico and go on to win Champs League. That would mean that Liverpool don't qualify for Champs League despite their fourth place finish because no domestic league can have more than five teams in Champs League. I realize that is unlikely, but just imagine what a gut punch that would be for LFC if it went down like that.
 
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Cackalacky

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I'm not as smart as you guys, but I too thought Milner has been very good at that left back position, and often is how they get the ball up into the business end of the pitch --- and he seems to have a great workrate --- I'd have named him Captain too.

As to the centerbacks, they are doubtless good (I don't see the subtleties there yet like you folks, so I can't judge), but Liverpool as a whole doesn't seem to me to be physical enough. They look vulnerable on basically every sort of set piece, and aren't very robust on their set pieces either. They seem to have to beat you with their cleverness and skill (which is great as long as they have Lallana and Mane, but on-the-edge without them.)

I'd like to hear you guys thoughts on this, as I'm still learning especially the roughhouse part of the game which Liverpool seems to lack but most others don't --- have Klopp get the owner to buy those two Italian Hammers from Juventus?

Agree 100% OMM. Milner has been amazing this year. I have no criticisms of him at all. He is the quintessential lunch pail player and the deserved captain.

Regarding defense Matip and Lovren have been exceptional during the run of play whenever they have been paired with each other (though becasue of injury that hasnt happened much). There aren't a better pair of CBs in the PL when healthy. When our preferred starting defense is healthy (Clyne, Lovren, Matip, Milner) they are conceding less than a goal a game and contribute offensively as well.

As far as set pieces go Liveprool have been atrocious since Rafa went to zone marking in the late 2000's I dont know why it still persists but it does. None of the coaches since have fixed it. I think it does have something to do with size and physicality which we lack across the board but that is a sacrifice with players such as Lallana, Mane, Coutihno and Firmino in the lineup.
 

NorthDakota

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Agree 100% OMM. Milner has been amazing this year. I have no criticisms of him at all. He is the quintessential lunch pail player and the deserved captain.

Regarding defense Matip and Lovren have been exceptional during the run of play whenever they have been paired with each other (though becasue of injury that hasnt happened much). There aren't a better pair of CBs in the PL when healthy. When our preferred starting defense is healthy (Clyne, Lovren, Matip, Milner) they are conceding less than a goal a game and contribute offensively as well.

As far as set pieces go Liveprool have been atrocious since Rafa went to zone marking in the late 2000's I dont know why it still persists but it does. None of the coaches since have fixed it. I think it does have something to do with size and physicality which we lack across the board but that is a sacrifice with players such as Lallana, Mane, Coutihno and Firmino in the lineup.

If and when i have children, I want my boys to grow up to be awesome like James Milner.
 

nsisk157

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Not favorable for us down the stretch...need to win out to have even the slightest of chances..
 
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Emcee77

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I think I agree with all of you. Milner has been great at left back this year. Absolutely not a weakness. I was worried about how he would do against pacy right wingers, but he and the team have managed to cope just fine for the most part.

Still, Milner is 30 and can't be a long-term solution, and Liverpool should get a specialist in the off-season, even if it's a young project who isn't ready to play right now. There were rumors about Ben Chilwell of Leicester and Charlie Taylor of Leeds, both of whom I like. Does it just make too much sense for LFC to try to sign Luke Shaw? I don't get why that potential move doesn't seem to be getting much traction. Seems like a deal that would be good for everyone, since Mourinho is so down on Shaw.
 

Emcee77

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Not favorable for us down the stretch...

Really tough run-in, but Spurs look unstoppable right now. Kane is back, Danny Rose should be coming back soon. Don't see why they can't keep it up.

By the way, what an embarassment of riches Spurs have at fullback. Rose and Walker are surely 2 of the top 5 in the league, Trippier has been great when called upon, and Davies, while a tier below the others IMO, has been pretty good for the most part.
 

nsisk157

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Really tough run-in, but Spurs look unstoppable right now. Kane is back, Danny Rose should be coming back soon. Don't see why they can't keep it up.

By the way, what an embarassment of riches Spurs have at fullback. Rose and Walker are surely 2 of the top 5 in the league, Trippier has been great when called upon, and Davies, while a tier below the others IMO, has been pretty good for the most part.

I agree. Been great cover for our primary backs. So much so we let Deandre walk on to Tyneside. Rumors of Shaw as well, but ill believe that when i see it.

We really need to bolster our attacking options in hopes of a deeper run in the CL next year. I'd love to open the checkbook for Pulisic, Dembele (take your pick), Mbappe...but the only time we spend big, tends to be on duds- Lamela (showed something this year but a lot of rumors of him right now), Sissoko (although i do rate him still), Soldado (who i really hoped the best for)...
 

ACamp1900

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It's been decades since Spurs won a league title correct??? Crazy to think considering what a big club they are and how many quality players have played for them over the years...
 

Rogue219

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I agree that they need to address this when the transfer market opens, but Milner has been nothing short of great at left back all season long. Even greater considering the position is new to him and left is not his natural foot.

I think as the season has worn on, it has become more and more difficult for him. He's been very solid and James Milner will do whatever is asked of him. In 17/18, that's going to mean going back to the left midfield as a sub and possibly filling in at left back again.

Alberto Moreno needs to be sold. Serie A would be a great landing spot.
 

Rogue219

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Agree 100% OMM. Milner has been amazing this year. I have no criticisms of him at all. He is the quintessential lunch pail player and the deserved captain.

Regarding defense Matip and Lovren have been exceptional during the run of play whenever they have been paired with each other (though becasue of injury that hasnt happened much). There aren't a better pair of CBs in the PL when healthy. When our preferred starting defense is healthy (Clyne, Lovren, Matip, Milner) they are conceding less than a goal a game and contribute offensively as well.

As far as set pieces go Liveprool have been atrocious since Rafa went to zone marking in the late 2000's I dont know why it still persists but it does. None of the coaches since have fixed it. I think it does have something to do with size and physicality which we lack across the board but that is a sacrifice with players such as Lallana, Mane, Coutihno and Firmino in the lineup.

I think Matip makes Lovren better. No Matip, bad Lovren.

So if they can find another class center half to play with Matip and a real left back, they're going to be very solid next year. Lovren could come off the bench or be sold.

What's going to happen with Sakho is going to be interesting.
 

NDShark

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Man U v Chelsea was classic Mourinho yesterday. Chelsea player makes slightest bit of contact with Man U player, Man U player goes to ground. Vintage Jose squad.

Chelsea couldn't string 2 completed passes together. It was rough to watch. Kante has been poor recently, too, and thus their form has dropped some.

Spurs are in very good form right now. They've been given a lifeline too.

Liverpool grinds out another away win. They may not have a choice now. Interesting that as long as Matip and Lovren both start, Liverpool has yet to lose with that center half duo. James Milner doesn't cut it at left back, though. That's something they need to get fixed this summer if they're serious about mounting a challenge for the title.

3-7 in the table should be very interesting down the stretch. If Man U wins Europa, that puts another twist on things.


Must've learned a few things from Diego Costa
 
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Cackalacky

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I think Matip makes Lovren better. No Matip, bad Lovren.

So if they can find another class center half to play with Matip and a real left back, they're going to be very solid next year. Lovren could come off the bench or be sold.

What's going to happen with Sakho is going to be interesting.

On a technical level yes but Lovren communicates things in German to Matip and he has a good working relationship and chemistry with him. I miss the days of Agger and Carragher.
 

Rogue219

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On a technical level yes but Lovren communicates things in German to Matip and he has a good working relationship and chemistry with him. I miss the days of Agger and Carragher.

Lovren's Liverpool tenure has been up and down to say the least. He was an absolute monster with the Saints.

I think Chelsea, Liverpool, City and United are all after Virgil van Dijk this summer. He's going to be one expensive center half.
 
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Cackalacky

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Lovren's Liverpool tenure has been up and down to say the least. He was an absolute monster with the Saints.

I think Chelsea, Liverpool, City and United are all after Virgil van Dijk this summer. He's going to be one expensive center half.
I would attribute that to his lack of a consistent and technically sound partner. I mean other than for 28% of the season, he has had to work with Klavan ( serviceable though not great) and even Lucas ( not even a CB).
 

Rocket89

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I agree. Been great cover for our primary backs. So much so we let Deandre walk on to Tyneside. Rumors of Shaw as well, but ill believe that when i see it.

We really need to bolster our attacking options in hopes of a deeper run in the CL next year. I'd love to open the checkbook for Pulisic, Dembele (take your pick), Mbappe...but the only time we spend big, tends to be on duds- Lamela (showed something this year but a lot of rumors of him right now), Sissoko (although i do rate him still), Soldado (who i really hoped the best for)...

IMO, the biggest need relative to taking the next step on the CL stage and winning an EPL title is finding an all-world box-to-box midfielder with offensive touch.

That seems kind of absurd given the play of Dembele and Wanyama with Winks progressing nicely until his injury and Dier providing flexibility....but....for as much as these players can boss the midfield they've been boxed in by the best competition at times. Dembele is world-class at what he does best but is such a non-threat in the final third. Plus, he's turning 30 this summer and a little injury prone.

Last year, Spurs were miserable without Dembele. This year quite better which is encouraging. But, there are still some games here and there where the passing maps are clear as day. Sometimes those central midfielders can't link up well with Kane/Alli and the attacking band so Spurs funnel everything through the fullbacks.

If the fullbacks are playing well (which is often) it's usually fine. But we've seen some performances, particularly with Trippier or Davies, where the games are one long stretch of fullback turnovers or poor crosses. Very frustrating. Good defenses don't respect our central middies in the final third and Spurs are one of the poorer teams from scoring outside the box anyway.

Of course, depth is needed everywhere (especially ST, RW CB) for better squad rotation. Spurs are in a pickle though cause no established player at these positions are going to want to sit behind Kane or Alderweireld and they certainly won't break their wage structure for a Top 50-ish type of player.

I'm curious to see the roster moves this summer. It's amazing how they've built things to this point under Poch with about $10 million net spending on players. But where does the money come from this time around?

Bentaleb- Permanent move to Shalke for $19 million already done
Fazio- Permanent move somewhere (stay at Roma?) for not much
Njie- Possibly already a permanent move to OM for less than $10 million
Sissoko- I'd accept 60 cents on the dollar for him, anything over $15 million for sure
N'Koudou- Apparently not a long-term solution, probably $5 million
Lamela- The big question mark. When healthy, could demand over $30 million
Janssen- One year and out unlikely, but could happen for $15 million
Wimmer- Could've been bold & sold super high last summer, still could leave for good money

At minimum, $50 million needs to come in the bank from these players. I'm even more amazed that Spurs are 2nd with the injuries plus a pretty awful summer 2016 transfer window.
 

Rogue219

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I would attribute that to his lack of a consistent and technically sound partner. I mean other than for 28% of the season, he has had to work with Klavan ( serviceable though not great) and even Lucas ( not even a CB).

Lovren's issues go back to when he first came to Liverpool. They need an upgrade if he can only be good alongside someone who is also good. They'll never win a title that way.

Klopp's successful Dortmund squads had good defenses. Liverpool right now is letting in way too many goals and they're in third. If they get better, they'll be serious contenders. No doubt that Chelsea, City and United are going to spend big money this summer. If Spurs get close and fall short again, they may make some moves.

If there are legitimate rumors to them being interested in Joe Hart, I think they should pursue that avenue too. Mignolet can either be sold or go to the bench, Karius needs more time. If Liverpool really want to contend for titles again, Joe Hart gives them a guy who can do that.
 

Emcee77

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What's going to happen with Sakho is going to be interesting.

Very. I wonder if Klopp will take him back. Klopp sure seemed to like him last year, before the summer falling-out. I seem to remember reading in the fall, just before the summer transfer window closed, that Klopp hadn't entirely given up on Sakho but he wanted him to go out on loan and prove his professionalism. Don't know if the relationship deteriorated further after that, because it sure seemed in the winter window that LFC were trying to sell him on a permanent deal. But anyway, now that Sakho seems to have gone and proven his professionalism at another Premier League club, I wonder if Klopp will give him a chance to reestablish himself at LFC.

I think Chelsea, Liverpool, City and United are all after Virgil van Dijk this summer. He's going to be one expensive center half.

50 million pounds, I've read? Pretty crazy for a center back. But imo he is twice as good as John Stones, who commanded a fee in that range, so maybe it makes sense. I would love for Liverpool to buy him, but I don't see FSG shelling out that kind of money for a center back. I hope I'm wrong.


IMO, the biggest need relative to taking the next step on the CL stage and winning an EPL title is finding an all-world box-to-box midfielder with offensive touch.

That seems kind of absurd given the play of Dembele and Wanyama with Winks progressing nicely until his injury and Dier providing flexibility....but....for as much as these players can boss the midfield they've been boxed in by the best competition at times.

I tend to agree, but I also think that's true of many teams. It is just so hard to find a true box-to-box midfielder who can protect the center backs and support and link with the attack equally well, and having that player can be a formation-changing thing. I've often thought that Man City would not have struggled so much this year, by Pep's standards, if they could just have kept Gundogan healthy this year. When he was (briefly) healthy he really knit things together.

In other Spurs news, I wonder if Poch will keep faith in Vincent Janssen, who finally scored a Premier League goal from open play this weekend, right? He's been a flop this year, but everybody seems to like him because he is a great teammate and a hard worker, and I've read that his Eredivisie career started the same way his Premier League career did, with something like 30 shots before he finally scored a goal from open play, and of course he went on to be last year's top scorer. I'd like to see him get one more season to try to prove himself. He could have a Son Heung-Min-like sophomore season.
 
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Rocket89

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I tend to agree, but I also think that's true of many teams. It is just so hard to find a true box-to-box midfielder who can protect the center backs and support and link with the attack equally well, and having that player can be a formation-changing thing. I've often thought that Man City would not have struggled so much this year, by Pep's standards, if they could just have kept Gundogan healthy this year. When he was (briefly) healthy he really knit things together.

In other Spurs news, I wonder if Poch will keep faith in Vincent Janssen, who finally scored a Premier League goal from open play this weekend, right? He's been a flop this year, but everybody seems to like him because he is a great teammate and a hard worker, and I've read that his Eredivisie career started the same way his Premier League career did, with something like 30 shots before he finally scored a goal from open play, and of course he went on to be last year's top scorer. I'd like to see him get one more season to try to prove himself. He could have a Son Heung-Min-like sophomore season.

That's true, I was getting long-winded and didn't want to spend time on how hard it is to find that elite center mid. Very hard! Still, Dembele has 2 goals over his last ~4,000 minutes which is frustrating.

Correct on Janssen. He didn't score in his first 8 games last year then finished with 27 in 32 league games. Pretty crazy. I'd imagine he'll stay cause he's only 22 even though he looks older.

I'm a big Son fan. Thought he was quietly pretty good last year in limited time. He has 16 league goals in roughly 3/4 of a season's worth of minutes!
 

Rogue219

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Very. I wonder if Klopp will take him back. Klopp sure seemed to like him last year, before the summer falling-out. I seem to remember reading in the fall, just before the summer transfer window closed, that Klopp hadn't entirely given up on Sakho but he wanted him to go out on loan and prove his professionalism. Don't know if the relationship deteriorated further after that, because it sure seemed in the winter window that LFC were trying to sell him on a permanent deal. But anyway, now that Sakho seems to have gone and proven his professionalism at another Premier League club, I wonder if Klopp will give him a chance to reestablish himself at LFC.



50 million pounds, I've read? Pretty crazy for a center back. But imo he is twice as good as John Stones, who commanded a fee in that range, so maybe it makes sense. I would love for Liverpool to buy him, but I don't see FSG shelling out that kind of money for a center back. I hope I'm wrong.

Put it to you this way, if they welcome Sakho back, he starts with Matip. I have no doubt in my mind that a fit Sakho is better than Lovren.

I think the ship has set sail, though. They got Matip on a free, so maybe they shell it out of van Dijk if they're serious about winning trophies.

This is all predicated on them having Champions League next year and there is a good chance they may not even if they finish fourth.
 
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