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Danny
post Feb 2 2015, 03:12 AM
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Unless anything else happens over the next 12 hours (we're still in for Munoz and Taarabt remains on the agenda) the Mercato is pretty much done for us.

Pipe dreams like Witsel and Khedira are fading dramatically, and we've embarrassingly failed to address the CM position.

So, here's what we brought in. And my thoughts on them. Feel free to add/disagree/agree with them/add your own.

Cerci. Here's where it started. I was overjoyed with this one - should have got him in the summer, but his flopping at Atletico opened it up to us getting him now. Hasn't started with us that well, slow at best - but tonight after 60 minutes his engine finally got going and he went from flat to lethal. If he can keep that spluttering away and continue like that then he will do well for us.

Suso. Liverpool fans rave about him, but I still ain't excited. I just want to see him play before I judge.

Destro. The star signing. We really wanted a top class striker, well, we have one. Looked very good tonight, anything but just a one-dimensional poacher. But does need chances created. He will score, he has energy, and he is will to fight. Good attitude. Not a genius, just a high-quality old school goal getter.

Update: Baselli. Won't lie, never seen him play before. Possible Jack alerted us to him. But he's much-needed resources in midfield.

Bocchetti. If tonight's debut was anything to go by, he's another Armero. Outclassed by Nocerino of all people and looked uncomfortable at best. Hopefully he dramatically improves, and in all fairness is a primary CB. So I will give him a chance to improve. In his proper position. If he gets that chance.

Antonelli. Not a rip-roaring signing but someone of use. He's got good Serie A experience and while probably not much better than a squad player, may be handy. But I won't pretend to know him that well.

Paletta. I am very pleased with this one. I think he'll be our first choice defender alongside Alex. We've been linked to him for a couple of years so happy we've got him.

Outgoing:

Niang. Really hope he does well at Genoa - surplus at San Siro but improved attitude and maybe some good development and he can return a more complete winger.

Saponara. Won't be missed. Utter rubbish.

Torres. Doing so much better at Atleti than he could at Milan. But helps that La Liga defences are gaping open wounds.

The CM position is the one aching to be sorted. Monto's completely gone, Van Ginkel seems to be lost thanks to mismanagement, Poli is only good enough to be used now and then, Muntari has been ditched to the bench at sodding last, and Bona is more of an attacking mid. Essien is a DM.

Like I said we ached for Witsel or Khedira but neither will happen. There is Susic of Hadjuk Split still on the radar, but we're understood to prefer Daniele Baselli of Atalanta. Mainly because the latter is young and cheap.

So we do have defenders and attackers coming out our ears now; we're well stocked up. The midfield question remains open, hopefully one or two come in tomorrow.

Which all leaves us with, for now, at strongest:

Lopez, Abate, Alex, Paletta, Rami, Mexes, Zapata, Antonelli, Bocchetti, Armero, MDS, De Jong, Essien, MvG, Muntari, Bona, Monto, Honda, Poli, Suso, Cerci, Destro, Menez, Pazzo.

A number of those players I wouldn't select if you paid me, but that is basically the first team squad as a whole. It's rather poorly balanced, and is hard to select a formation to get the best out of it while selecting the strongest.

I'd personally go with a 4:2:3:1 selection:

Lopez, Abate, Alex, Paletta, MDS; De Jong, Van Ginkel (who else we got? Monto's guff. Maybe Bona?); Menez, Suso, Cerci; Destro.

This post has been edited by Danny: Feb 2 2015, 03:04 PM
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han2503
post Feb 2 2015, 11:55 AM
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QUOTE (Danny @ Feb 2 2015, 03:12 AM) *
Lopez, Abate, Alex, Paletta, MDS; De Jong, Van Ginkel (who else we got? Monto's guff. Maybe Bona?); Menez, Suso, Cerci; Destro.

I haven't read the entirety of you post, however my eyes did zoom in on this bit

You're completely against Mexes and Alex playing together because they are slow, yet you'd advocate a Alex-Paletta pairing... Paletta is slow, clumsy, pretty mediocre on the ball and has barely decent positional sense.

I really don't get your thinking sometimes...

At least is Mexes is slow all his other abilities as a defender are solid and certainly better than frickin' Paletta of all players. At least with Zapata, even if I don't rate him all that highly I understood your thinking behind it and agreed that it works
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Danny
post Feb 2 2015, 12:09 PM
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tbh you think Rami's a decent defender so we utterly disagree on what we judge to be a good defender (IMG:style_emoticons/default/tongue.gif)

Fact is he'll be first choice alongside Alex IMO.
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kurtsimonw
post Feb 2 2015, 02:07 PM
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Pleased with the Cerci, Bocchetti, Paletta and Destro signings. Suso, I'm not at all excited about. If he couldn't get in to this incredibly medicore Liverpool side I'm not sure what the fuss is about.
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Danny
post Feb 2 2015, 03:03 PM
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QUOTE (kurtsimonw @ Feb 2 2015, 01:07 PM) *
Pleased with the Cerci, Bocchetti, Paletta and Destro signings. Suso, I'm not at all excited about. If he couldn't get in to this incredibly medicore Liverpool side I'm not sure what the fuss is about.


I agree with that reasoning. That said managers always have their favourites. Look at Pippo.
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X-Offender
post Feb 2 2015, 04:10 PM
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I don't like it, at all. Quantity over quality, that's what this mercato has been about. Except for Cerci, Destro and perhaps Suso, the rest I couldn't care less about. They're all mediocre players for me.

I have never rated Paletta, which you seem so excited about. If he was any good another team would have signed him by now. Bocchetti and Antonelli are just Bonera-level players. Baselli I know nothing of, but Italian youth nowadays has hit rock bottom, hence I don't have any high hopes.

And the fact we didn't sign a playmaker just makes it all worse. All hail Montolivo!
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Danny
post Feb 2 2015, 04:46 PM
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QUOTE (X-Offender @ Feb 2 2015, 03:10 PM) *
I don't like it, at all. Quantity over quality, that's what this mercato has been about. Except for Cerci, Destro and perhaps Suso, the rest I couldn't care less about. They're all mediocre players for me.

I have never rated Paletta, which you seem so excited about. If he was any good another team would have signed him by now.


How long has Di Natale been at Udinese?

QUOTE
Bocchetti and Antonelli are just Bonera-level players. Baselli I know nothing of, but Italian youth nowadays has hit rock bottom, hence I don't have any high hopes.

And the fact we didn't sign a playmaker just makes it all worse. All hail Montolivo!


Suso is a playmaker - he an AM. If you mean a regista Modric/Pirlo type, a half decent one costs 20M+. And is an increasingly rare position these days.

PS did you know Monto was simply dropped yesterday?
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post Feb 2 2015, 04:54 PM
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QUOTE (Danny @ Feb 2 2015, 04:46 PM) *
How long has Di Natale been at Udinese?


Different situation.

QUOTE (Danny @ Feb 2 2015, 04:46 PM) *
Suso is a playmaker - he an AM. If you mean a regista Modric/Pirlo type, a half decent one costs 20M+. And is an increasingly rare position these days.


I meant someone like Witsel.

QUOTE (Danny @ Feb 2 2015, 04:46 PM) *
PS did you know Monto was simply dropped yesterday?


He was injured. That's what Pippo said.
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post Feb 2 2015, 05:10 PM
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Embarrassing deadline day shows how far AC Milan have fallen

Amen.
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han2503
post Feb 2 2015, 05:11 PM
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QUOTE (Danny @ Feb 2 2015, 12:09 PM) *
tbh you think Rami's a decent defender so we utterly disagree on what we judge to be a good defender (IMG:style_emoticons/default/tongue.gif)

Fact is he'll be first choice alongside Alex IMO.

Decent is a self explanatory word though no?

He can be good on his day, but also capable of bad days, he's nothing spectacular but usually good enough to get the job done without much hassle or fanfare.

Paletta though... Really?? Terrible, terrible defender imo. And I find it strange how you can say that it's a fact that he'll be first choice. All of our other CBs bar Bonera and Bocchetti are better than him

As for my initial post, you didn't really answer my question. How can you be so adamant about Alex and Mexes because they're both slow yet you seem very excited about an Alex Paletta pairing and last I checked Paletta is also a very slow player, not to mention a mediocre defender at best
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Danny
post Feb 2 2015, 09:31 PM
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Because he's not an alpha male defender like Alex or Mexes. Those two are leader types, organising those around them.

I don't know that Paletta is that type at all. Hence why he can fill the role of foil rather than being too similar.

But in truth, who the hell knows what Pippo will put out. I've lost all sense of being able to plead for a sensible system.

Bit ironic given he wants 'serenity' but is doing everything he can to hijack any chance of it.
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han2503
post Feb 2 2015, 10:31 PM
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QUOTE (Danny @ Feb 2 2015, 09:31 PM) *
Because he's not an alpha male defender like Alex or Mexes. Those two are leader types, organising those around them.

If this was an issue we'd never have enjoyed defences made up of Silva and Nesta, Nesta and Maldini, Nesta and Stam, Alex and Terry back at Chelsea made a very strong pairing as well, both alphas, both relatively slow. Cannavaro and Nesta and Vidic and Ferdinand also all spring to mind when I think of 2 leaders who played together with a lot of success
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Danny
post Feb 3 2015, 12:14 AM
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Silva:

Follower.

and Nesta

Leader.

QUOTE
Nesta


Follower.

QUOTE
and Maldini,


Leader

QUOTE
Nesta


Leader.

QUOTE
and Stam,


Follower.

QUOTE
Alex


Follower.

QUOTE
and Terry


Leader.

QUOTE
back at Chelsea made a very strong pairing as well, both alphas, both relatively slow. Cannavaro and Nesta


Huh? For Italy?

QUOTE
and Vidic


Follower.

QUOTE
and Ferdinand


Leader.

QUOTE
also all spring to mind when I think of 2 leaders who played together with a lot of success


That was fun (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

Not about the individual defender, but the role they play for the team. Mexes and Alex are leaders in our defence. They cannot play together. But in all the examples you expressed bar possibly the Nesta/Canna one saw an alpha leader and the foil partner. Doesn't matter if on paper they both appear to be alphas, in that role Cahill, Vidic, Nesta - have all played the follower.

But Jesus H Christ what does it matter anyway! We can disagree on this but Pippo's gonna do what Pippo's gonna do.
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han2503
post Feb 3 2015, 09:43 AM
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Nah, can't agree with that at all.

Nesta was foil to no one, not even Paolo. They both led the line. And Silva might have initially started as the foil to Nesta when he first came but in his last 2 seasons he was just as much the leader and organiser as Nesta

You're basically saying all these players can switch off their leader instincts when playing next to someone else who is similar. But it's impossible for Mexes and Alex?

For me you're either a leader or you're not, and all those players I listed for me are/were leaders in defence, they don't just step back and play second fiddle according to who plays next to them
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Danny
post Feb 3 2015, 12:03 PM
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QUOTE (Danny @ Feb 2 2015, 11:14 PM) *
But Jesus H Christ what does it matter anyway! We can disagree on this but Pippo's gonna do what Pippo's gonna do.

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