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April 13 2021 5.26am

Too many dribblers

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View ripleyeagle's Profile ripleyeagle Flag Ripley Surrey 06 Apr 21 9.41am Send a Private Message to ripleyeagle Add ripleyeagle as a friend

Watching the game yesterday it was refreshing to see us playing with more freedom now that relegation is all but now off the agenda.One of the problems though I think is with Zaha,Eze and Ayew in the same team we spend too much time dribbling with the ball in midfield areas and when the ball is lost we are immediately prone to counter attacks against our slow back four which was the case yesterday.I was constantly shouting at the telly yesterday to PASS the ball and get the ball up front quicker before their defence was set.Later in the game it was better when Wilf went out wide and started doing what he does best by taking on their right back going past him and crossing quickly.I think we need to let the ball do the work and improve the connection from midfield to our forwards and do the dribbling where it hurts in and around the opponents penalty area.

 

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View Davepalace707's Profile Davepalace707 Flag Northumberland 06 Apr 21 9.52am Send a Private Message to Davepalace707 Add Davepalace707 as a friend

Originally posted by ripleyeagle

Watching the game yesterday it was refreshing to see us playing with more freedom now that relegation is all but now off the agenda.One of the problems though I think is with Zaha,Eze and Ayew in the same team we spend too much time dribbling with the ball in midfield areas and when the ball is lost we are immediately prone to counter attacks against our slow back four which was the case yesterday.I was constantly shouting at the telly yesterday to PASS the ball and get the ball up front quicker before their defence was set.Later in the game it was better when Wilf went out wide and started doing what he does best by taking on their right back going past him and crossing quickly.I think we need to let the ball do the work and improve the connection from midfield to our forwards and do the dribbling where it hurts in and around the opponents penalty area.

I think Everton had seen the stats which show we generally lose when we have more than 50pc possession and we have to come out of our defensive comfort zone. For large parts of the game it looked like a usual Palace match in reverse. They were content to sit back and we had the space to be creative, pass the ball and dribble, but we not surprisingly looked like kids with a new toy, and struggled to provide any meaningful passes or openings in the final third. But it backfired on them towards the end, Schlupp worked out how to open them up.

 


“You miss 100 per cent of the shots you don’t take”

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View TheBigToePunt's Profile TheBigToePunt Flag 06 Apr 21 12.40pm Send a Private Message to TheBigToePunt Add TheBigToePunt as a friend

It's an interesting point. One thing Ayew, Zaha and Eze have in common is that they tend to keep the ball when they get it, rather than move it on quickly. Fitting that in to a team pattern is a challenge, but its chicken and egg - do they hold the ball for ages because they have so few options and runners, or do the team create so few options and make so few runs because they know Zaha and Eze in particular won't release it anyway?

The other issue is that Zaha has stopped running at people, and instead started holding onto the ball for ages once he gets it, allowing the opposition to get back behind the ball and killing any momentum we might have had.

I blame this slightly on the change of position from winger to forward, but mostly on the great lengths of time that go by when he doesn't see the ball at all. I've always felt that he is more likely to pass it quickly if he gets it more often, and if there are positive options around him, runners off the ball etc.

Last night at Everton, he passed it more often and more quickly than he has for ages, reinforcing my view that he can and does adapt to his teammates every bit as much as they adapt to him. His forward passing is often pretty good when he gets the chance to use it. Play better football, get better football from Zaha.

With Eze its a bit less clear. He seems to prefer to come in form the left rather than play as a no10 (apparently he has said as much?), and he certainly couldn't be trusted defensively to play in a two man centre of midfield from the start, but when Roy moved him there last night we had a better chance of moving the ball through midfield, as he is so comfortable on the ball. He might score less goals, but his passing is good from there. Its a daft comparison to make, but whenever I watch Eze I am reminded of how Modric went from a free role no10 into a complete central midfielder. He never really learned to defend, but uses the ball so well that it doesn't much matter.

Either way, it's a nice problem to have, and even if we continue to pass the ball as well as we did last night, we will still need an individual to beat a man along the way.

Final point, Schlupp makes a massive difference to us. He isn't much of a dribbler, and can't pass water, but he makes such well timed, positive runs off the ball into space, especially beyond the forwards, that it totally changes our attacking play. For every dribbler you need two or three passers, but also at least one runner, and Schlupp is ours.

 

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View Uphill's Profile Uphill Flag Bedford 06 Apr 21 2.10pm Send a Private Message to Uphill Add Uphill as a friend

If we seem to be holding on to the ball more then that is a massive and refreshing change from the normal 'kick and run' and 'get rid of it quick' mentality so typical in the recent past.

The one fly in the ointment is we have yet to discover the art of moving into space to receive a pass.

Too often the pass is made to a marked forward who has no option but to off load immediately.

Finding space should be in the essential tool kit of all strikers and also (very markedly) when we take throw-ins when 95% are wasted.

 

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View Palace Old Geezer's Profile Palace Old Geezer Flag Midhurst 06 Apr 21 2.36pm Send a Private Message to Palace Old Geezer Add Palace Old Geezer as a friend

Some excellent observations being made in this thread and I'm finding myself agreeing with BTP wholesale. Especially the fact that we lack players who seem able to read the game and move into space fast enough.

Schlupp did have an impact as did Bats of course. Definitely a big improvement. Would have been good to see more of Mateta. Hope he gets to start instead of CB next week.

 


Dad and I would watch games on the muddy slope of the Holmesdale Road end, probably at the same time as Roy.

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