Heroes & Villains, the Aston Villa fanzine

Heroes & Villains => Heroes Discussion => Topic started by: ozzjim on October 23, 2021, 09:10:25 AM

Title: Where do we go from here...
Post by: ozzjim on October 23, 2021, 09:10:25 AM
We have threads on NSWE and Dean, but for me this is a thread about where we are, and where are we going. Both NSWE and Dean Smith have done brilliantly for Villa for 3 years, but with Jack going in the summer, the coaching changes, the puzzling transfer strategy, the new money at Newcastle and the improvement in some other sides in the league, the top 6 looks a bigger step than 17th in the Championship to 11th in the Prem right now.

Are NSWE still aiming at the top 6? If so, do they really believe Smith will take us there, or if not are they settling in for mid table Premier league to hold the investment they have put in? I feel we are at a cross roads with the owners ambition and the manager right now. There are a number of directions it could go. 12 months ago I was totally confident I knew where we are heading and it was an exciting ride. Right now I am not so sure I do.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Beard82 on October 23, 2021, 09:27:50 AM
Very good question and well put.

Think you have hit the nail on the head - what is the ambition?

I see it that:
1) We are now further behind the "top teams" - whose Net invested more, like Arsenal, West Ham etc and seems to have worked well.
2) We do have a good squad - and should be between 8 - 10th with it
3) There appears to be a disconnect at the club - the idea of signing 3 players to replace joe looks really stupid - as the man picking the team doesn't know how to play any of them to get the best out of them
4) The backroom changes so far look like they have taken us backwards, as the team has no way of playing and defensively we lost all the progress we made
5) Emi Martenize, McGinn, Bailey, Watkins (assuming they are playing well) - will be wanted "bigger clubs" and will go unless we keep to promises / project

In short - it looks like we are going backwards - despite having a reasonable squad. 

Is there a change in plan?  Maybe more focus on bringing the youth through? 

Or has nothing changed and we're seeing the end of the dean smith era
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: BC Villain on October 23, 2021, 09:41:39 AM
At the moment we look like a big boat in the middle of a lake, with some of the players rowing one way, and the others rowing the other way.  Meanwhile,  Dean Smith resembles the man with his hand on the tiller, scratching his head trying to work out why the boats going round in circles.  Its difficult to escape the feeling that all is not well in the dressing room and that the players are losing confidence in the manager.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Risso on October 23, 2021, 09:43:25 AM
We need to sort it out soon. I can't see Martinez wanting to stick around to play in this car crash for much longer, and I'd much rather lose Smith than him.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: ChicagoLion on October 23, 2021, 09:52:39 AM
Itís a very good question and we can only guess.
I have a concern that the departures are indicative of a lack of faith in the manager, the pundits last night were critical of the way the team is set up and you wonder if there is a narrative in the game about Smith.
There is no reason to believe that the owners have lost ambition but if they allow this malaise to continue then you know we are in letís muddle through strategy.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: ChicagoLion on October 23, 2021, 09:57:14 AM
We need to sort it out soon. I can't see Martinez wanting to stick around to play in this car crash for much longer, and I'd much rather lose Smith than him.
If this continues you can see players getting picked off in January.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: hipkiss92 on October 23, 2021, 10:09:39 AM
We need to sort it out soon. I can't see Martinez wanting to stick around to play in this car crash for much longer, and I'd much rather lose Smith than him.
If this continues you can see players getting picked off in January.

No club ever has players 'picked off' in the January transfer window.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Richard E on October 23, 2021, 10:14:29 AM
Down to the lake, I fear.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: N'ZMAV on October 23, 2021, 10:15:08 AM
this is a test for the ownership and Purslow.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: brontebilly on October 23, 2021, 10:20:12 AM
At the moment we look like a big boat in the middle of a lake, with some of the players rowing one way, and the others rowing the other way.  Meanwhile,  Dean Smith resembles the man with his hand on the tiller, scratching his head trying to work out why the boats going round in circles.  Its difficult to escape the feeling that all is not well in the dressing room and that the players are losing confidence in the manager.

Pre season seems to have been an utter shit show too. But the win (and performance) at Old Trafford was meant to be a sign that we were finally kicking on post Grealish. But the two performances in north London since, and the late collapse v Wolves, do indicate something very much wrong behind the scenes. Hopefully it's just the tactical shambles but Smith was very unwise to point to lack of application being the key issue last night. That sets him on a bit of a showdown with the players and that rarely ends well.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Villan82 on October 23, 2021, 10:30:47 AM
When you look at things in the round since last season ended it's not good. In May we looked nicely set up to charge for Europe this season. But, the coaching set-up was dismantled and Joe kicked every single one of us loyal villans hard in the balls. We spent that money well but something seemed off about the pre-season preparation and the first half against Watford was a shit-show.

I am long enough following villa to know that if something stinks the place out it means there is likely something wrong. People are talking about the 1997-98 season and I'd also add 1994-95 and 2010-11. Something just isn't right with the villa we had come to know. Players look off.

We need to get this project back on the right track. We do have a young, talented squad and we can still save this season. More of last night and it will be a dogfight.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: PhilVill on October 23, 2021, 11:29:03 AM
I think the owners are still very much committed to getting Villa back to where they belong but it seems to me that they may well have started having concerns about Smith last year and wanted to see how the start of season pans out. Where we are now, I am convinced that DS will be gone very soon. As soon as you publicly throw players under the bus it tends to end sooner rather than later...
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: SoccerHQ on October 23, 2021, 12:21:50 PM
This is where ownership has to step up and prove they're better than what we've previously had.

If they truly believe in next few weeks DS has taken us as far as he can then they can't afford to be sentimental and just let the season drift.

Thank him, pay him up, let him go and put the feelers out around europe as Shakespeare could caretake for a few games if needs be.

Yes they'll be stick on here and in general media as in their eyes we're not doing too badly so would be an odd sacking but I think with Newcastle money we can't afford to take years to get into top half otherwise it will just be another team that goes past us pretty quickly.


I've mentioned it a few times but a great template for us is Leicester. Their owners weren't happy with progress they were making in 18/19 (they were about 13th in late Feb) so didn't mess around and sacked Claude Puel and got in Rodgers. This was only months after the owner died of course so that's a top ownership for me and decision more than justified in what they've done since.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: SoccerHQ on October 23, 2021, 12:25:51 PM
We need to sort it out soon. I can't see Martinez wanting to stick around to play in this car crash for much longer, and I'd much rather lose Smith than him.

I agree. I think Emi's agent would laugh us off the phone if we rang him up to offer a new deal. Don't think Luiz is in any hurry to sign a new deal either and he'll have one year left on his deal next summer.

Not too worried about likes of McGinn and Mings as I think they know it's unlikely anyone above us currently would want them and seem happy here.

Losing Doug and Emi in same summer wouldn't be great at all.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: PaulWinch again on October 23, 2021, 12:27:28 PM
We need to sort it out soon. I can't see Martinez wanting to stick around to play in this car crash for much longer, and I'd much rather lose Smith than him.

Yep agreed. We are definitely performing beneath the level we should with the quality of players we have. That has to be down to the manager - and it is, the 3 centre back approach is not strengthening our weaknesses and itís undermining our strengths.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: OzVilla on October 23, 2021, 12:32:03 PM
All eyes on the owners. I think Smithís time is done tbh, it just might not be this week but I just canít see him still being here at Christmas.

The next appointment will tell us everything we need to know about their ambitions.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: richtheholtender on October 23, 2021, 12:42:25 PM
there's no point in saying the manager needs to go if the model is now to finish midtable, develop players and sell them for a high profit because he is the perfect manager for that. Also, you can't sack a manager when you've not backed him and they haven't, the net spend was zero and teams above and around us invested. The time for that was last season.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: SoccerHQ on October 23, 2021, 12:46:04 PM
there's no point in saying the manager needs to go if the model is now to finish midtable, develop players and sell them for a high profit because he is the perfect manager for that. Also, you can't sack a manager when you've not backed him and they haven't, the net spend was zero and teams above and around us invested. The time for that was last season.

I think they'll give it the next 4 games and see how we fit likes of Bailey in team now he's fit. Ultimately guys like him, Ings and Buendia cost 100m pretty much so think owners have a right to expect these guys to win us some games from time to time playing a logical system.

Purslow is DS biggest backer by all accounts so DS is done if he loses confidence so I'd say two wins from next 4 games is badly needed otherwise we'll be a far way off even 10th and that isn't acceptable for me.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: steamer on October 23, 2021, 12:48:58 PM
Not sure, Tactics and performance are dire in last 3 games and always a nagging feeling about his ability to step up and change games.
But unless we ham some super dooper Manager in the wings , why change before end of season ?
Tweak a bit and we should finish 10th
But plan ahead, look at options and consider them.
It is what good management teams do.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Duncan Shaw on October 23, 2021, 12:51:57 PM
Purslow is savvy enough to know he'll need to pot Dean if the owners start questioning his judgement. 
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: SoccerHQ on October 23, 2021, 12:54:17 PM
Not sure, Tactics and performance are dire in last 3 games and always a nagging feeling about his ability to step up and change games.
But unless we ham some super dooper Manager in the wings , why change before end of season ?
Tweak a bit and we should finish 10th
But plan ahead, look at options and consider them.
It is what good management teams do.

Depends who long you wait. Not win any of our next 4 and we'll be a fair bit off 10th with a pretty difficult run of games in December.

I think he's got another month to get us back on track and he'll be gone start of December if we don't.

This is parallels with West Brom in 13/14 season. They won at Man. United for first time in decades in September 2013. Won then one of their next 10 league games and Steve Clarke was sacked in the December.

Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Villan82 on October 23, 2021, 01:00:29 PM
One of the unfortunate aspects of our recent history is that we had to go to the Championship to end up with these owners. It has meant that we have had to come from a very low base. If they had rocked up around 2011 or 2012 imagine how different things would have been. Liverpool finished below us in 2010, were bought by proper owners and are now unrecognisable.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: SoccerHQ on October 23, 2021, 04:31:28 PM
Think a good guide to our progress in short term is how close or far off we are to Everton.

They finished one place and a couple of points clear of us last season.

Barely spent anything in the summer and we beat them very comfortably a few weeks back (I know they had injuries blah blah).

They hold on to the win v Watford, they're 7 points clear of us. At this stage of the season that's still manageable. However we don't win in next 2-3 games and gap could easily be 10-12 points.

If that happens I think the owners would have a right to conclude what the hell is going on as they'd have been a realistic team we'd have targeted to finish above in August.

If the simple answer is they just have a much better manager than Dean Smith then well isn't it simply time in our evolution to do something about that and get in a Benitez standard manager in?
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: AndyB6 on October 23, 2021, 04:49:36 PM
Look at the Everton score now!! 😯
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Ads on October 23, 2021, 05:08:41 PM
We play our best system which is 433, with 3 midfielders with legs. That means no 10, but duel 8s giving Dougie the chance to screen from higher up and it means you have to kill your darlings. It's Ings or Watkins through the middle, not both.

For me, I think our beat team is probably;

Martinez

Targett
Mings
Konsa
Cash

McGinn
Dougie
Sanson

Bailey
Ings
Buendia

How about we play that against West Ham and see how we fare.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: jwarry on October 23, 2021, 05:09:09 PM
Well we are either 6 points from the bottom 3 or 6 points from the top 4, so it depends how you hold your glass
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: SoccerHQ on October 23, 2021, 05:12:39 PM
Look at the Everton score now!! 😯

Aye, my post aged well didn't it. Hope everyone had a good chuckle at my post!

Benitez back to Newcastle will probably happen at some point in next month.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Clark W Griswold on October 23, 2021, 05:28:34 PM
I think if the owners were really serious you would have seen more investment in the summer. Deano saying with 2 weeks left of the window that he was happy with what he had and after weíd just signed an Man Utd reserve on loan was that sudden realisation moment that weíre not going to be challenging at the very highest level, similar to the end of the summer in 2007 when Lerner had been there a year and weíd just signed Marlon Harewood and Scott Carson on loan, after thinking Lerner was going to have us challenging Chelsea and Man Utd. On the other hand maybe it was Smiths decision alone not to bring in more but I doubt it personally. What has compounded the situation is that Smith seems to have gone off on an inexplicable tangent with tactics and his back room staff have turned over so everything has been turned on its head in a bad way with a squad that should be mid table. On current form we wonít be much higher than the relegation zone unless things change dramatically and one of those considerations will be Smith himself.

Going back to the owners, as said, they didnít really spend to get us promoted, we loaned, and between Grealish, McGinn, Mings and Smith himself we got up by the skin of our teeth. For me, since then money has been spent on a new squad because it had to be and then when we nearly went down more was spent again to protect the investment. Am I grateful to them, absolutely, itís better than Lerner did in his last few years or what the bloke at the Albion has done for them but do I think weíll be up there challenging for the CL? No I donít.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Ian. on October 23, 2021, 05:50:00 PM
We play our best system which is 433, with 3 midfielders with legs. That means no 10, but duel 8s giving Dougie the chance to screen from higher up and it means you have to kill your darlings. It's Ings or Watkins through the middle, not both.

For me, I think our beat team is probably;

Martinez

Targett
Mings
Konsa
Cash

McGinn
Dougie
Sanson

Bailey
Ings
Buendia

How about we play that against West Ham and see how we fare.

Thatís pretty much a must and we could have done that last night but with Watkins in the wide role with Bailey ready to come on. Iím still completely baffled why we didnít try that last night especially after our performances against Arsenal last season.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Ads on October 23, 2021, 05:55:07 PM
I find the idea that the owners aren't serious or "haven't really spent" absolutely bewildering.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: AV82EC on October 23, 2021, 06:11:05 PM
This is one of those moments for owners and their Chief Exec and DoF where they have to take a step back and say for the money spent is it good enough. Forget all the detail of each individual match as a body of work is the last 12 months taking us in the right direction. I think the juryís out but the trend of results and performances isnít looking good and if it doesnít turn in the next few weeks, heíll be gone. As others have said Iím very nervous about Purslow having a huge say in his replacement should that come to pass going on previous comments.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: OzVilla on October 23, 2021, 08:51:31 PM
I find the idea that the owners aren't serious or "haven't really spent" absolutely bewildering.

Wasnít Lerner serious and throwing around cash at one point.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: cdbullyweefan on October 23, 2021, 09:00:50 PM
We play our best system which is 433, with 3 midfielders with legs. That means no 10, but duel 8s giving Dougie the chance to screen from higher up and it means you have to kill your darlings. It's Ings or Watkins through the middle, not both.

For me, I think our beat team is probably;

Martinez

Targett
Mings
Konsa
Cash

McGinn
Dougie
Sanson

Bailey
Ings
Buendia

How about we play that against West Ham and see how we fare.

Would agree except I would leave Cash at right back and Targett at left back instead of swapping them round. Also, Ramsey deserves his place in the team. He has, arguably, been our best player this season and scored a great goal against the Arse.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: tony scott on October 23, 2021, 09:18:48 PM
The Wolves result I believe was pivotal, in the way we are perceived by the other premiership teams they will all constantly press and Harry us now. We can outplay them but I now think we have a confidence issue, and itís down the manager to turn it around.  I just donít think he can.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Clampy on October 24, 2021, 08:31:49 AM
I find the idea that the owners aren't serious or "haven't really spent" absolutely bewildering.

It's not just bewildering, it's absolute nonsense.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: ozzjim on October 24, 2021, 08:46:38 AM
I find the idea that the owners aren't serious or "haven't really spent" absolutely bewildering.

It's not just bewildering, it's absolute nonsense.

Nonsense that they haven't so far. But not nonsense that they may not moving forward. No one knows that, their intentions on promotion before Newcastle were bought by a country etc was clearly stated, but losing Joe, having a net spend of plus £10m when there were still gaps in the squad, no real sit and game changing signing to lift the profile suggests they may have taken the foot off the gas a little and are taking stock. For me it feels at the moment a bit Lerner like. Not to the same extent, but something doesn't feel right about it at the moment.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Clampy on October 24, 2021, 08:52:25 AM
We don't really know who else they tried to bring in other than ESR and Ward-Prowse. To suggest that they have taken their foot off the gas just because we didn't spend more than we got for Joe is unfair. If any pair deserve the benefit of the doubt, it's the two owners.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: ozzjim on October 24, 2021, 09:05:27 AM
I agree completely re benefit of the doubt, it doesn't stop questions being asked though. I accept we went for Smith Rowe but signed Bailey instead when we couldn't get him, but with Ward Prowse it was obvious that he was the managers number 1 target and they didn't authorise the get him at all costs style that you have seen from Chelsea and Man City and no doubt will soon from Newcastle. That could be seen as not being all in on Smith and holding back to see how this season goes, which if I were them I would have been doing considering his record without Joe, or it could be seen as not being as all in as they were previously. Time will tell. It must be pretty gutting to them to have their best player, a fan of the club, still jot buy in to the long term after all they have done.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Drummond on October 24, 2021, 09:13:37 AM
Well we are either 6 points from the bottom 3 or 6 points from the top 4, so it depends how you hold your glass

Mid table. We just need to improve our form because we played an abysmal 60 minutes (15 v Wolves into the first half v arsenal) but were OK either side.

It's a results game though and he needs to get some points and quickly I think.

I still think he's a good manager, but there's a nagging doubt creeping in.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Clampy on October 24, 2021, 09:14:56 AM
Joe wanted Champions League football though and he seemingly couldn't wait, however much he claimed to be one of us but that's for another thread.

My point is we really don't know who else they tried to get. They may have been working on a defensive midfielder and for whatever reason, it didn't happen so maybe then they looked at what they had and decided it would be enough until January. That may be all it is. That to me sounds pretty plausible after all they have spent since they've been here.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Beard82 on October 24, 2021, 09:17:32 AM
We don't really know who else they tried to bring in other than ESR and Ward-Prowse. To suggest that they have taken their foot off the gas just because we didn't spend more than we got for Joe is unfair. If any pair deserve the benefit of the doubt, it's the two owners.
I found these strange as from an outside perspective the bids for ESR and JWP were insultingly low. Which made no sense to me when we paid good money for emi at that point
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Clampy on October 24, 2021, 09:20:30 AM
We don't really know who else they tried to bring in other than ESR and Ward-Prowse. To suggest that they have taken their foot off the gas just because we didn't spend more than we got for Joe is unfair. If any pair deserve the benefit of the doubt, it's the two owners.
I found these strange as from an outside perspective the boss for ESR and JWP were insultingly low. Which made no sense to me when we paid good money for emi at that point

I stand correct on this but wasn't ESR in the last year of his contract?
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Beard82 on October 24, 2021, 09:25:26 AM
We don't really know who else they tried to bring in other than ESR and Ward-Prowse. To suggest that they have taken their foot off the gas just because we didn't spend more than we got for Joe is unfair. If any pair deserve the benefit of the doubt, it's the two owners.
I found these strange as from an outside perspective the boss for ESR and JWP were insultingly low. Which made no sense to me when we paid good money for emi at that point

I stand correct on this but wasn't ESR in the last year of his contract?

Yes that was true - but it still didnt feel enough to worry Arse.  I can only think that they were hoping he would come out and force the move but that was never going to happen IMO
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: algy on October 24, 2021, 09:30:52 AM
Think we've been unlucky with injuries so far this season, and to some extent that's forced our hand in to playing 3-5-2. Quite happy at this point to give him the benefit of the doubt at the moment, but that goes when Bailey is up to playing 70mins+.

For Dean Smith - I'm still in the 'Smith in' camp. He's a nice bloke, a Villa supporter, and he's met or exceeded his targets every season.

However, I can't see him surviving another extended bad run. NSWE must at least have a goal of regular European football, and have said as much. I don't see how that's compatible with a season of treading water in mid table, even before the Newcastle takeover.

I know and completely buy in to the idea that we should be developing players and flogging therm on at a huge profit, and to be fair to Dean there's very few players who've not increased in value under his watch, but I think the time will very quickly approach that we need to be in at least the Europa League to attract the level of promising youngster needed to compete at the top.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: ChicagoLion on October 24, 2021, 09:49:41 AM
I donít see how the injuries forces 3 5 2 , the defence was not the problem so why change something that isnít bust?
There are multiple options the manager could have used based on the resources he has had that does not require playing most of the team out of position and shoehorning 2 up top and Tuanzabe into the system.
Then when it isnít working do it again.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: clash city rocker on October 24, 2021, 09:50:09 AM
With our owners I dont think they are the sort of people who give up on a project simply because there are a few bumps in the road. We will never know the facts about who we may of tried to sign in the summer and that is how it should be. You have to remember there are four parties involved in any transfer..... the buyers, the sellers, the player,the agent....and everyone of them has there own agenda.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: ChicagoLion on October 24, 2021, 09:53:31 AM
The owners are not the problem here, they will become the problem if they let this situation take hold of the season though.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: clash city rocker on October 24, 2021, 09:58:18 AM
It all begs the question if not Smith then who ? And getting replacement manager has all the same issues involved as signing a player.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: richtheholtender on October 24, 2021, 10:05:59 AM
We don't really know who else they tried to bring in other than ESR and Ward-Prowse. To suggest that they have taken their foot off the gas just because we didn't spend more than we got for Joe is unfair. If any pair deserve the benefit of the doubt, it's the two owners.
I found these strange as from an outside perspective the bids for ESR and JWP were insultingly low. Which made no sense to me when we paid good money for emi at that point



Tool the limelight off the Joe transfer. Made us look ambitious.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Clampy on October 24, 2021, 10:09:19 AM
I donít see how the injuries forces 3 5 2 , the defence was not the problem so why change something that isnít bust?
There are multiple options the manager could have used based on the resources he has had that does not require playing most of the team out of position and shoehorning 2 up top and Tuanzabe into the system.
Then when it isnít working do it again.

Bert and Bailey both being out didn't help which is why he maybe went with the wing backs but yes, it also comes across as a case of not wanting to drop either Ings and Watkins.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Beard82 on October 24, 2021, 10:16:02 AM
The owners, manager setup has all be great in getting us this far - and it took me a long time to come around to believing that things could be different this time and maybe we could be optimistic about being a top team.   

But now Something somewhere just doesnít add up since the end of last season.  We finished on a high and in a great position - we seemed to know where we were going and what we were doing.  Then the summer seemed a mess - and weíre further behind people we thought we would be competing with.

There seems a disconnect - I donít think smith wanted or rates a lot of the players that have been bought in the last 2 windows. 

All the new coaches feel underwhelming and the basically we have been shit most of the season so far.  The team is now less then the sum of its parts - and that worries me - as up until now your Dean I think it has been greater than the sum of its parts.

I know joe leaving is a huge blow - but this seems wider than that
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: N'ZMAV on October 24, 2021, 10:31:14 AM
It all begs the question if not Smith then who ? And getting replacement manager has all the same issues involved as signing a player.
this is my concern; would I rather stick with Smith than gamble on who the owners could bring in. Am I right in remembering their links to Thierry Henry previously? or was the another owners/time - I can't remember.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Jon Crofts on October 24, 2021, 10:37:03 AM
It all begs the question if not Smith then who ? And getting replacement manager has all the same issues involved as signing a player.
this is my concern; would I rather stick with Smith than gamble on who the owners could bring in. Am I right in remembering their links to Thierry Henry previously? or was the another owners/time - I can't remember.

The Terry Henry to Villa stories were July 2018 and according to anyone who'd listen he'd agreed terms to replace Bruce.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Bobby Boy on October 24, 2021, 10:43:10 AM
It all begs the question if not Smith then who ? And getting replacement manager has all the same issues involved as signing a player.
this is my concern; would I rather stick with Smith than gamble on who the owners could bring in. Am I right in remembering their links to Thierry Henry previously? or was the another owners/time - I can't remember.

For me it's not about Smith or someone else as such. It's about knowing that we have a manager who is tactically flexible and who is prepared to make changes during a game decisively when it is clear that the original plan isn't working.

The top managers will make in game changes even if it means changing the shape or the personnel in the first half.

I would like Dean to be that manager but he consistently refuses or is unable to make changes that seem obvious.

How 532 lasted the whole of the first half against Arsenal was jaw dropping. It was so clearly a mistake. Making the change at half time when we were then 2-0 down was infuriating.

If Dean can show that he can be ruthless and admit to his own errors then great but nothing suggests so far that he can do that.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Sexual Ealing on October 24, 2021, 10:54:50 AM
It all begs the question if not Smith then who ? And getting replacement manager has all the same issues involved as signing a player.
this is my concern; would I rather stick with Smith than gamble on who the owners could bring in. Am I right in remembering their links to Thierry Henry previously? or was the another owners/time - I can't remember.

For me it's not about Smith or someone else as such. It's about knowing that we have a manager who is tactically flexible and who is prepared to make changes during a game decisively when it is clear that the original plan isn't working.

The top managers will make in game changes even if it means changing the shape or the personnel in the first half.

I would like Dean to be that manager but he consistently refuses or is unable to make changes that seem obvious.

How 532 lasted the whole of the first half against Arsenal was jaw dropping. It was so clearly a mistake. Making the change at half time when we were then 2-0 down was infuriating.

If Dean can show that he can be ruthless and admit to his own errors then great but nothing suggests so far that he can do that.

I certainly agree that we need a manager who changes things when we're playing shit, but where are they? Pep, Klopp, Bielsa definitely aren't 'tactically flexible'.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: tomd2103 on October 24, 2021, 11:02:50 AM
I find the idea that the owners aren't serious or "haven't really spent" absolutely bewildering.

It's not just bewildering, it's absolute nonsense.

Nonsense that they haven't so far. But not nonsense that they may not moving forward. No one knows that, their intentions on promotion before Newcastle were bought by a country etc was clearly stated, but losing Joe, having a net spend of plus £10m when there were still gaps in the squad, no real sit and game changing signing to lift the profile suggests they may have taken the foot off the gas a little and are taking stock. For me it feels at the moment a bit Lerner like. Not to the same extent, but something doesn't feel right about it at the moment.

I think there is the possibility that everyone at the club was taken aback by Grealish's departure and had planned for him to be with us.  The fact that it was so late in the window wouldn't have left us too long to make alternative plans really.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Risso on October 24, 2021, 11:06:01 AM

I think there is the possibility that everyone at the club was taken aback by Grealish's departure and had planned for him to be with us.  The fact that it was so late in the window wouldn't have left us too long to make alternative plans really.

That's not realistic, one bit. Firstly, there was the buy-out clause. The inclusion of that alone means it can't have come as a complete surprise. Then now having heard all the stuff post the transfer happening, it's clear he wanted to leave all summer.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Risso on October 24, 2021, 11:09:31 AM

I certainly agree that we need a manager who changes things when we're playing shit, but where are they? Pep, Klopp, Bielsa definitely aren't 'tactically flexible'.

I've seen Bielsa take an underperforming player off after 30 minutes, something Smith would never, ever do. As for Klopp etc, perhaps they don't need to be that flexible if they're winning 60-70% of matches using their favoured tactics.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Sexual Ealing on October 24, 2021, 11:12:20 AM

I certainly agree that we need a manager who changes things when we're playing shit, but where are they? Pep, Klopp, Bielsa definitely aren't 'tactically flexible'.

I've seen Bielsa take an underperforming player off after 30 minutes, something Smith would never, ever do. As for Klopp etc, perhaps they don't need to be that flexible if they're winning 60-70% of matches using their favoured tactics.

That's true. We just need an astonishing manager. I hope we can pay for one.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: SoccerHQ on October 24, 2021, 11:27:53 AM
It all begs the question if not Smith then who ? And getting replacement manager has all the same issues involved as signing a player.
this is my concern; would I rather stick with Smith than gamble on who the owners could bring in. Am I right in remembering their links to Thierry Henry previously? or was the another owners/time - I can't remember.

For me it's not about Smith or someone else as such. It's about knowing that we have a manager who is tactically flexible and who is prepared to make changes during a game decisively when it is clear that the original plan isn't working.

The top managers will make in game changes even if it means changing the shape or the personnel in the first half.

I would like Dean to be that manager but he consistently refuses or is unable to make changes that seem obvious.

How 532 lasted the whole of the first half against Arsenal was jaw dropping. It was so clearly a mistake. Making the change at half time when we were then 2-0 down was infuriating.

If Dean can show that he can be ruthless and admit to his own errors then great but nothing suggests so far that he can do that.

I certainly agree that we need a manager who changes things when we're playing shit, but where are they? Pep, Klopp, Bielsa definitely aren't 'tactically flexible'.

It dosen't have to be a manager who does a double sub after 20 minutes as Mourinho famously did a few times years back.

No interest at all in watching one of the worst first halves we've ever played again but anyone could see it wasn't working after 10 minutes. Nothing happened and we then inevitably conceded. Nothing happened still right up to the penalty.

From what I could see there was no tweak of formation or shifting of players e.g. considering the space Smith Rowe was getting floating around Cash surely bringing Ollie back and giving him more of a defensive role to help out the full back would've been logical? We were massively exposed with just two centrally so perhaps Axel could've been pushed into midfield just to disrupt Arsenal a bit more.

To simply sit on his hands yet again in a period of a game where we simply couldn't do anything isn't good enough to me and hints at why we probably won't finish top 8 under him as we'll simply have too many of these games season in season out.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Sexual Ealing on October 24, 2021, 11:32:27 AM
It all begs the question if not Smith then who ? And getting replacement manager has all the same issues involved as signing a player.
this is my concern; would I rather stick with Smith than gamble on who the owners could bring in. Am I right in remembering their links to Thierry Henry previously? or was the another owners/time - I can't remember.

For me it's not about Smith or someone else as such. It's about knowing that we have a manager who is tactically flexible and who is prepared to make changes during a game decisively when it is clear that the original plan isn't working.

The top managers will make in game changes even if it means changing the shape or the personnel in the first half.

I would like Dean to be that manager but he consistently refuses or is unable to make changes that seem obvious.

How 532 lasted the whole of the first half against Arsenal was jaw dropping. It was so clearly a mistake. Making the change at half time when we were then 2-0 down was infuriating.

If Dean can show that he can be ruthless and admit to his own errors then great but nothing suggests so far that he can do that.

I certainly agree that we need a manager who changes things when we're playing shit, but where are they? Pep, Klopp, Bielsa definitely aren't 'tactically flexible'.

It dosen't have to be a manager who does a double sub after 20 minutes as Mourinho famously did a few times years back.

No interest at all in watching one of the worst first halves we've ever played again but anyone could see it wasn't working after 10 minutes. Nothing happened and we then inevitably conceded. Nothing happened still right up to the penalty.

From what I could see there was no tweak of formation or shifting of players e.g. considering the space Smith Rowe was getting floating around Cash surely bringing Ollie back and giving him more of a defensive role to help out the full back would've been logical? We were massively exposed with just two centrally so perhaps Axel could've been pushed into midfield just to disrupt Arsenal a bit more.

To simply sit on his hands yet again in a period of a game where we simply couldn't do anything isn't good enough to me and hints at why we probably won't finish top 8 under him as we'll simply have too many of these games season in season out.

I completely agree. Which manager changes things so early?
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Ads on October 24, 2021, 11:34:29 AM
Managers invariable change little to nothing in game. They're incredibly stubborn, the lot of them.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: SoccerHQ on October 24, 2021, 11:38:06 AM
Well I don't know, I don't watch as many random prem games as I used to.

Decent example perhaps would be how bad that Saul guy was for   Chelsea a few weeks back. Taken off promptly at half time.

Given what he's achieved since joining Chelsea Tuchel is clearly a far superior reader of games as they're going on than Lampard was for them so I think that's the crux for us now.

Asking too much to get in a manager of Tuchel's quality but there are I'm sure plenty of attainable managers in europe currently who could put out more coherent starting formations and change things quicker than Dean is.

I actually let him off last week v Wolves but plenty of people were hammering him for the 3 subs he made when 2 up so there's simply too much evidence against to suggest he's top half when it comes to game changing subs.

Once again this season we're rarely getting anything when we concede first, think it's just a point off Brentford.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Ads on October 24, 2021, 11:41:08 AM
He still waited until half time and they ought to have been 2 or 3 behind by then.

Smith can win me back. 6 points out the next two and your belief comes back. But its the fear that mistakes being repeated year in year out, that we're capable of being absolutely diabolical so often. It just fills you with the feeling that actually this is a bridge too far.

But you have a full squad now Smith. Put 3 proper runners in midfield and put 3 naturally positioned wide and attacking players up top. If that means Ollie, Traore and El Ghazi are on the bench against West Ham then so be it, as that's a quality bench.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Sexual Ealing on October 24, 2021, 11:44:19 AM
He still waited until half time and they ought to have been 2 or 3 behind by then.

Smith can win me back. 6 points out the next too and your belief comes back. But its the fear that mistakes being repeated year in year out, that we're capable of being absolutely diabolical so often. It just fills you with the feeling that actually this is a bridge too far.

But you have a full squad now Smith. Put 3 proper runners in midfield and put 3 naturally positioned wide and attacking players up top. If that means Ollie, Traore and El Ghazi are on the bench against West Ham then so be it, as that's a quality bench.

That sounds about right.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Mister E on October 24, 2021, 03:02:10 PM
The weird thing about Smith is that we can - and have done so this season - play well (Chelsea away - we played very good football; ManUre away - out-thought Gollum; Wolves at home - looked comfortable, with some very good football in the first half).
Friday night: totally different, starting with Watkins' silly yellow after 90 seconds.
Something happened after the Wolves game which has disaffected the squad and soured relationships between manager and players, by the looks of things.
Is it retrievable? - that is what Purslow has to decide, and quick.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Rudy65 on October 24, 2021, 03:22:07 PM
One of the unfortunate aspects of our recent history is that we had to go to the Championship to end up with these owners. It has meant that we have had to come from a very low base. If they had rocked up around 2011 or 2012 imagine how different things would have been. Liverpool finished below us in 2010, were bought by proper owners and are now unrecognisable.

And made two great managerial appointments Rodgers and the world class Klopp
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: KevinGage on October 24, 2021, 03:36:23 PM
Managers invariable change little to nothing in game. They're incredibly stubborn, the lot of them.

I've referenced it before, but when he was managing Brentford and we played them away in our first season down there, he was very quick to switch it up after the first 20 minutes or so.

Henri Lansbury (Henri Lansbury FFS!) was stroking the ball around like Zidane and we should have been 2-3 up early on.

Smudger said after the game that Lansbury was getting too much space in the opening stages of the game so they pushed up 10-15 metres to nullify him. Not exactly groundbreaking. But playing a different sport, compared to Bruce.

He can be proactive.  Which makes it all the more frustating when he sits on his hands and does nowt.

As well as shoehorning Watkins and Tuanzebe into the starting XI, I wonder if the three at the back is to have a set number of tall 'yins at corners and set pieces. It's all well and good being more of a threat at attacking those. But shouldn't be picking sides with that solely in mind.  That's getting into Pulis territory.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: jwarry on October 24, 2021, 04:28:39 PM
I just think itís been a combination of crap happening (Jack, injuries. Internationals) and changing too much at the same time (players, coaches and formation) - so Iím going with we are in transition, and Iím sure the owners know that.  I also think Dean expected to win the last 2 games so he is probably feeling the pressure himself.  What I canít excuse is blaming the players when he clearly got it so wrong foe that game, but Thai needs to be balanced with how that formation played Chelsea off the park despite losing.  Dean just need to figure out when to play 3 and when to play 4
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Risso on October 24, 2021, 04:35:14 PM
I just think itís been a combination of crap happening (Jack, injuries. Internationals) and changing too much at the same time (players, coaches and formation) - so Iím going with we are in transition, and Iím sure the owners know that.  I also think Dean expected to win the last 2 games so he is probably feeling the pressure himself.  What I canít excuse is blaming the players when he clearly got it so wrong foe that game, but Thai needs to be balanced with how that formation played Chelsea off the park despite losing.  Dean just need to figure out when to play 3 and when to play 4

We've still got the core nucleus of the squad that we had last season. Martinez, Cash, Konsa, Mings, Targett, McGinn, Luiz, Watkins with the likes of Ramsey and El Ghazi as well.  That's what most clubs look to have each season with two to three fresh faces around, so the number of new players shouldn't be causing him a problem. The problems mostly appear to be of his own making. Trying to shoehorn Ings and Watkins together in to a system that suits absolutely nobody in the team.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: pauliewalnuts on October 24, 2021, 08:46:58 PM
I really want it to work with Smith. It is true, we are an inconsistent team who can be brilliant at times, and utterly abysmal at other times. My concern is that that ratio is nowhere near where it needs to be.

I'd be interested to see (but am too lazy to find it) how many points we have in the last 38 league games. I am guessing it's nothing like what we'd need to do in a season to be where we want to be.

My problem with Friday was that it absolutely reeked of Paul Lambert. Everything. The clueless lack of shape, the refusal to believe what was happening in front of his eyes, the achieving less than the sum of the parts of the players he has, the predictable excuses and reality distortion field of the post match interview.

It just isn't good enough, I'm afraid. The owners have invested tons of money, and with lots of money comes an understandable expectation of better results, but at the moment we are not seeing that.

What we are seeing is the predictable pattern of surprisingly good result followed by match after match of absolute rubbish.

It makes me want to sick up a kidney when i read people going on about yeah but he's one of us, he's Villa through and through, like that makes up for the failings. Yeah, it's nice to have that connection, but it's depressingly small time when that's the best excuse people can come up with.

If we are going to be one of the top clubs again, we need to start acting it - the meek acceptance of rubbishness and the provision of lame excuses doesn't sit well with that.

He needs to get things looking much better, very quickly.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Dante Lavelli on October 24, 2021, 09:13:42 PM
1. Choose a formation - primarily four v three at the back as theyíre not easily interchangeable.
2. The clubís transfer policy and training - top to bottom - should be geared towards that formation
3. Start listing/monitoring managers that excel playing that formation
4. Invest in Smith for the time being (he deserves that)
5. Be ruthless if the manager at the top of number 3 becomes available.

This Ďprocessí approach should mean that all investment is heading in the same direction and is not wasted if thereís a change of manager.

Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Risso on October 24, 2021, 09:29:16 PM
I really want it to work with Smith. It is true, we are an inconsistent team who can be brilliant at times, and utterly abysmal at other times. My concern is that that ratio is nowhere near where it needs to be.

I'd be interested to see (but am too lazy to find it) how many points we have in the last 38 league games. I am guessing it's nothing like what we'd need to do in a season to be where we want to be.

My problem with Friday was that it absolutely reeked of Paul Lambert. Everything. The clueless lack of shape, the refusal to believe what was happening in front of his eyes, the achieving less than the sum of the parts of the players he has, the predictable excuses and reality distortion field of the post match interview.

It just isn't good enough, I'm afraid. The owners have invested tons of money, and with lots of money comes an understandable expectation of better results, but at the moment we are not seeing that.

What we are seeing is the predictable pattern of surprisingly good result followed by match after match of absolute rubbish.

It makes me want to sick up a kidney when i read people going on about yeah but he's one of us, he's Villa through and through, like that makes up for the failings. Yeah, it's nice to have that connection, but it's depressingly small time when that's the best excuse people can come up with.

If we are going to be one of the top clubs again, we need to start acting it - the meek acceptance of rubbishness and the provision of lame excuses doesn't sit well with that.

He needs to get things looking much better, very quickly.

The last 38 games have seen 50 points, which is quite reasonable of course, and would see a team finish 12th most years. However it's getting steadily worse, even with the two good results at the end of last season.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: curiousorange on October 24, 2021, 10:05:38 PM
Under Ellis we acted small time. So then we were taken over, and looked like we might do it differently, until it became too expensive not to act small time. So then we were sold again, and it looked like being small time might be optimistic.

So then, we were bought by two people who have unimaginable levels of wealth. And I refuse to believe that after all of the above, we won't take decisions which allow us to break out of that "it'll do for now" mindset. Smith won't see out the season, and I doubt he'll see out the year.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Smithy on October 26, 2021, 11:07:04 AM
Under Ellis we acted small time. So then we were taken over, and looked like we might do it differently, until it became too expensive not to act small time. So then we were sold again, and it looked like being small time might be optimistic.

So then, we were bought by two people who have unimaginable levels of wealth. And I refuse to believe that after all of the above, we won't take decisions which allow us to break out of that "it'll do for now" mindset. Smith won't see out the season, and I doubt he'll see out the year.

I still think he'll see out the season, unless it looks like a top 10 finish is entirely beyond us.  If we're hovering in the 12th-8th places then he'll finish the season and the owners will decide next summer whether or not the progress has been sufficient.  I suspect it would not be - they will want another demonstrable year-on-year improvement, I'd imagine.  Right now, this season after 9 games, we are clearly behind where we want to be - but a season isn't played over 9 games.  And in each full season, he's improved us compared to the last.  Losing three on the bounce doesn't make him any more deserving of the sack than winning three in a row guarantees his job for another year.

Would I swap him to Thomas Tuchel? In a heartbeat, and I say that as someone who really likes Dean - but the reality is that Tuchel-level managers are few and far between, and we're probably not quite ready as a club to attract a Tier 1 manager yet (though maybe the owners would be willing to throw around the sort of money required to get one?)

Either way, I'd be surprised if he got the boot before the end of the season unless the current poor run extends into December.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: ChicagoLion on October 26, 2021, 01:11:21 PM
In reply to Smithy.

If the current run extends into December we will be slugging it out with Norwich.
I do not believe these owners will let it get that bad.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: RichardBatchelor on October 26, 2021, 01:40:10 PM
We play our best system which is 433, with 3 midfielders with legs. That means no 10, but duel 8s giving Dougie the chance to screen from higher up and it means you have to kill your darlings. It's Ings or Watkins through the middle, not both.

For me, I think our beat team is probably;

Martinez

Targett
Mings
Konsa
Cash

McGinn
Dougie
Sanson

Bailey
Ings
Buendia

How about we play that against West Ham and see how we fare.

This is all hysteria, 9 matches into the season fgs.
Dean Smith will prevail.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Toronto Villa on October 26, 2021, 05:03:00 PM
The reputation Dean Smith had when he arrived, and that we have seen at times with us is that he goes at teams and always plays to win. Importantly that he's not afraid. We've been playing so much on the back foot recently. Against Arsenal we barely touched the ball in the first 15 minutes. I just want us to go for it again. We have super attacking talent. Use them. If we lose trying to win, and when we are winning making smart tactical adjustments to protect the lead or build on it, nobody will complain. Right now we start games defending deep and it only gets worse. We aren't getting shots on goal and we are giving the ball away constantly putting pressure on defenders that end up making mistakes.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: brontebilly on October 26, 2021, 08:25:27 PM

I certainly agree that we need a manager who changes things when we're playing shit, but where are they? Pep, Klopp, Bielsa definitely aren't 'tactically flexible'.

I've seen Bielsa take an underperforming player off after 30 minutes, something Smith would never, ever do. As for Klopp etc, perhaps they don't need to be that flexible if they're winning 60-70% of matches using their favoured tactics.

Bielsa took off their holding midfielder against us wasn't it? Grealish drew a yellow card from him very early on, I don't even think he lasted 30mins.

Klopp has taken Keita alone off early multiple occasions, including against Athletico at half time after scoring last week. He took off the same guy v Real the season before after about 20 mins when they were getting destroyed in midfield, in a manner if I recall correctly was similar to us v Arsenal. Hasn't held it against him though, still gives him chances.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Sexual Ealing on October 26, 2021, 09:44:41 PM
Easy then. Go and get one of them.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: ChicagoLion on October 31, 2021, 08:43:09 PM
It is obvious now that the summer was an absolute shit show and has completely derailed the Club.
The Grealish saga and how it was handled was unfortunate but the decisions that have been taken since then have got us to where we are today, instead of looking forward to a push towards Europe we look more likely to be scrapping it out in the bottom 6.
Replacing Grealish with Bailey Ings and Buendia.
Acquiring Young and Tuanzabe
Letting Heaton go.
3 senior coaches leaving
The failure to bring in a DCM
So without a proper pre season we have attempted to cope with a huge change in coaching, tactics , formation and players.
Itís no wonder we are in a mess.

I think it is too easy to level all of the blame at Smith although he is hugely culpable for in trying and failing to shoehorn Ings and Tuanzabe into a new formation.

The question I have is, will be sacking Smith alone be enough to get us back on track?

Or should we be questioning the direction being taken by Lang and Purslow if we want to satisfy the question of this thread?
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: OzVilla on October 31, 2021, 08:55:47 PM
Welcome to the 2020/21 relegation battle. We shouldnít be any near this but Iím afraid, right now we most certainly are.

We donít know our best team or our best formation, our Captain just been dropped, weíve conceded goals for fun, players are openly showing frustration at management, we are in an absolute mess.

Iím afraid that Wolves result will define this season as a before/after moment.

Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: SoccerHQ on October 31, 2021, 08:59:42 PM
Did we have more points after 11 games in 19/20? I get the feeling we did so that would be pretty sobering and worrying stat.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Aldridge Villa on October 31, 2021, 09:03:43 PM
Youíre a year behind Oz but Iíll take it 😂
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: BC Villain on October 31, 2021, 09:06:47 PM
Under Ellis we acted small time. So then we were taken over, and looked like we might do it differently, until it became too expensive not to act small time. So then we were sold again, and it looked like being small time might be optimistic.

So then, we were bought by two people who have unimaginable levels of wealth. And I refuse to believe that after all of the above, we won't take decisions which allow us to break out of that "it'll do for now" mindset. Smith won't see out the season, and I doubt he'll see out the year.

I still think he'll see out the season, unless it looks like a top 10 finish is entirely beyond us.  If we're hovering in the 12th-8th places then he'll finish the season and the owners will decide next summer whether or not the progress has been sufficient.  I suspect it would not be - they will want another demonstrable year-on-year improvement, I'd imagine.  Right now, this season after 9 games, we are clearly behind where we want to be - but a season isn't played over 9 games.  And in each full season, he's improved us compared to the last.  Losing three on the bounce doesn't make him any more deserving of the sack than winning three in a row guarantees his job for another year.

Would I swap him to Thomas Tuchel? In a heartbeat, and I say that as someone who really likes Dean - but the reality is that Tuchel-level managers are few and far between, and we're probably not quite ready as a club to attract a Tier 1 manager yet (though maybe the owners would be willing to throw around the sort of money required to get one?)

Either way, I'd be surprised if he got the boot before the end of the season unless the current poor run extends into December.

Changing manager is dependent on getting the replacement correct.  Newcastle fans were all whipping their dicks out at the thought of sacking Steve Bruce, but it's looking like they've binned him without having an idea of who they're going to bring in.

Its without doubt the biggest test of NSWE and Purslow's tenure.  Sacking Smith and mucking up the job of replacing him will screw up the progress they've made.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: OzVilla on October 31, 2021, 09:08:39 PM
Did we have more points after 11 games in 19/20? I get the feeling we did so that would be pretty sobering and worrying stat.

We had 1 point more at this stage in 19/20.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: adrenachrome on October 31, 2021, 09:09:53 PM
It is obvious now that the summer was an absolute shit show and has completely derailed the Club.
The Grealish saga and how it was handled was unfortunate but the decisions that have been taken since then have got us to where we are today, instead of looking forward to a push towards Europe we look more likely to be scrapping it out in the bottom 6.
Replacing Grealish with Bailey Ings and Buendia.
Acquiring Young and Tuanzabe
Letting Heaton go.
3 senior coaches leaving
The failure to bring in a DCM
So without a proper pre season we have attempted to cope with a huge change in coaching, tactics , formation and players.
Itís no wonder we are in a mess.

I think it is too easy to level all of the blame at Smith although he is hugely culpable for in trying and failing to shoehorn Ings and Tuanzabe into a new formation.

The question I have is, will be sacking Smith alone be enough to get us back on track?

Or should we be questioning the direction being taken by Lang and Purslow if we want to satisfy the question of this thread?


The Grealish situation was massive. If you have your major player possibly leaving very late in the transfer window, then all planning is up the spout. Both he and Kane had some form of agreement to let them leave. Spurs kept hold of Kane,  and they don't look up to much, either. 
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: OzVilla on October 31, 2021, 09:41:36 PM
Thing is I donít think the Grealish leaving decision was late. Looking back, I think it was made far earlier in the Summer break as was reported at the time from Citeh insiders.

Itís just that we (and I was guilty of this) didnít want to believe it. We just havenít transitioned into the post Joe era very well on or off the pitch.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: Ads on October 31, 2021, 09:42:00 PM
Grealish is an excuse.
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: passport1 on October 31, 2021, 09:45:41 PM
Yes a nice lazy one to trot out
Title: Re: Where do we go from here...
Post by: brontebilly on October 31, 2021, 09:47:44 PM
It is obvious now that the summer was an absolute shit show and has completely derailed the Club.
The Grealish saga and how it was handled was unfortunate but the decisions that have been taken since then have got us to where we are today, instead of looking forward to a push towards Europe we look more likely to be scrapping it out in the bottom 6.
Replacing Grealish with Bailey Ings and Buendia.
Acquiring Young and Tuanzabe
Letting Heaton go.
3 senior coaches leaving
The failure to bring in a DCM
So without a proper pre season we have attempted to cope with a huge change in coaching, tactics , formation and players.
Itís no wonder we are in a mess.

I think it is too easy to level all of the blame at Smith although he is hugely culpable for in trying and failing to shoehorn Ings and Tuanzabe into a new formation.

The question I have is, will be sacking Smith alone be enough to get us back on track?

Or should we be questioning the direction being taken by Lang and Purslow if we want to satisfy the question of this thread?


The Grealish situation was massive. If you have your major player possibly leaving very late in the transfer window, then all planning is up the spout. Both he and Kane had some form of agreement to let them leave. Spurs kept hold of Kane,  and they don't look up to much, either.

Spurs will be wishing they sold Kane last summer.
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