We all like to think we could do a better job of managing the football club than the manager. It doesn’t matter who the manager is, his achievements or coaching badges, we all think at some point that we could do a better job.
It’s with this in mind that I got to think about why our squad is in the situation that it’s in today. How we appear to be short of a player in one or two positions. Why wasn’t this addressed in the summer? Was it a managerial oversight, was it a calculated gamble or just stupidity?
I’m not an expert, but I have built a few 25 man squads in Football Manager in my time and know how I like to go about it.
Basically, there are 11 players on the pitch. Double it to make 22. That way you have one back up player for each position. We currently have a 3rd goalkeeper taking up a squad number. Why? Why not have a younger goalkeeper, under 21, who can act as 3rd choice and not take up a squad number?
So we still have 3 places left. We could have the remaining 3 places filled with either utility players, like we had before with Paul Warhurst or Chris Coleman. The type of players who can play in a variety of positions.
If we decide against utility players we could have players who would change our formation. For example, if we play with a defensive midfielder and two central midfielders then we could have an attacking midfielder, if we play one striker we could have an extra striker or a sweeper. Anything to give us a plan b.
Now, I’m just a normal fan and that seems perfectly obvious to me. At the moment we only have 7 defenders. We play with 1 striker but we have 4 in the squad. The squad doesn’t seem to have balance and this is what’s hurting us.
We simply don’t have cover in defence and the cover we do have seems not to be trusted by the manager.
Fryers is the cover player for Souare so if he isn’t trusted to start then why wasn’t this addressed in the summer? I’m sure it will be addressed in January.
We have 3 central defenders, I guess Kelly could fill in if needed but this isn’t really a good solution, especially when you think we had 8 defenders at the club last season.
I know Rome wasn’t built in a day but we’ve seen this coming for more than a year. Things really should have been addressed in the summer instead of being distracted by the Benteke transfer.
January can’t come soon enough.