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Emerson Thome

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Everything posted by Emerson Thome

  1. 15 sets of votes in, thanks for everyone for completing this rather painful exercise. Play-Off Semi Final, SWFC vs Sunderland (home), 13th May 2022 Peacock-Farrell: 6.1 Storey: 5.5 Dean: 6.8 Hutchinson: 6.7 Hunt: 5.9 Johnson: 6.7 Luongo: 5.5 Byers: 5.7 Bannan: 6.6 Windass: 6.0 Gregory: 7.7 - MoM Palmer: 5.6 Mendez-Laing: 4.4 Paterson: 5.8 Berahino: 5.4 Team Rating: 6.29
  2. A strange feeling of fatalism struck me near the end of the first half and I could tell it wasn't going to be our night somehow (I know, that's part of being a Wednesday fan, but it was particularly strong tonight). Sunderland played well, and our midfield seemed tired by the end. Our best chance was to hit them again soon after our first goal, but we never really built up a head of stream and they took the momentum out of the game. I think if Sunderland had missed that chance in the 92nd minute, extra time might still have been a step too far. I can't mark the players too harshly though. Peacock-Farrell: 7 - not a lot to do. Storey: 5 - biggest disappointment for me, seemed tentative on a few occasions and allowed the cross too easily near the end. Dean: 7 - good battle with Stewart, who didn't get too much of a sniff Hutchinson: 7 - battler to the end, I hope his Wednesday career doesn't end like that Hunt: 7.5 - up and down the right flank all night. Shouldn't have taken him off. Johnson: 7.5 - Quality. Great ball in for the goal and he is one of our key men now. Luongo: 7 - Put his foot in as usual, but, recurring theme here, should have used the ball better. His last game for us? Byers: 7 - Chopped down, and seemed to be struggling at points in the second half, but kept battling away. Bannan: 7 - Glorious pass to release Johnson. O'Nien followed him everywhere, shame he was lacking that extra 10% of full fitness. Windass: 6.5 - Good effort for someone out for a while, but never managed to hurt them. Gregory: 7.5 - MoM. Great battle with Batth. Really put himself about, especially in the second half. Hope and pray his legs last another year or two. Palmer: 6 - Tough match to be pitched in to. Could he have beaten Roberts to that cross? Possibly, but it was a great run. Paterson: 6 - Usual good leaps but didn't meaningfully win the ball or add to our attacks. Mendez-Laing: 6 - Understand the theory in him running at tired legs, but it didn't quite happen Berahino: 6 - Wish that sliced cross near the end had been a few yards further to the right.
  3. It is easy to say 'close us down quickly', but most teams have tried this at Hillsborough and only Rotherham and Oxford managed to it and beat us. What we need is smart recruitment, better defenders who are comfortable on the ball, a good number 10 with pace, then we'll be even better at playing through these teams that try and close us down. It is high risk for them. Get it wrong, and suddenly we have 4, 5, 6 players streaming forward from midfield and half their team is out of the game. Also, asking them to play at well above their usual intensity - we will pick them off as the game goes on. The better we get at it, the more we will be able to do it on smaller grounds and away from home.
  4. Absolutely. Those positions are key. If (big if) we can keep Windass fit that could be one gap filled. Dean too, if he's happy to sign, but I suspect he'll be Championship bound and this will be a key recruitment position. The other thing we need is to use the loan market properly. BPF and Storey have been qualified successes, but John-Jules, Gibson, Shodipo, Corbeanu, Kamberi - partly through injuries, but they have mainly flopped. When you look at MK Dons with Parrott, Kessler-Hayden, Coventry, etc - all charging forward - this could be a way to get some fresh legs into our squad.
  5. I feel like the ref should be empowered to add extra punishment time on to fine teams for time-wasting. Sunderland were by no means as bad as some of the teams we've suffered watching this season, and the longest stoppage was a genuine clash of heads. But it is killing the game as a spectacle if allowed to carry on. Where you have teams like Wycombe and players like McCarthy under instructions to go down for 3 minutes at a time - the ref can never ignore someone holding his head, because the 1 time in 100 it is genuine there could be a serious injury. But if he suspects they wasted 3 minutes with an incident, they should be allowed to add double, 6 minutes, on for that one stoppage alone. The slow walk off for the 3 subs at the end should be a double time offence too - they would be off in 10 seconds rather than 2 minutes if they knew the punishment was double time added on. Perhaps take time-keeping out of the hands of the ref on the field entirely, with a different official keeping count of time-wasting offences with a time-wasting clock. Also introduce a rule whereby the team playing the team that does the time-wasting has the option to use the extra time or not. E.g. if Wycombe have done 8 minutes time-wasting, so their punishment is a minimum of 16 minutes added time, and Oxford, Portsmouth or whoever, go 2-1 up after 7 added minutes, they can choose to end the game there if they like. If time-wasting was properly punished like this, it would soon stop, because you would be putting your team at a disadvantage.
  6. I hope not. Hutchinson has been a stalwart - but he's still only 32 and still has a bit of pace about him. Playing centre back could prolong his career, and since he came back last January he's played 52 games in a season and a half with only one long-ish spell on the sidelines. He's apparently taken a big wage cut to come back, so don't think he's one of our higher earners. I would rather offload Iorfa who doesn't look comfortable in a three-at-the-back and might fetch a small amount of money. Or Dunkley, who would be on similar wages. Would rather see Hutchinson given a good run at right-sided centre-half in the back 3. He's done a job filling in on the left, but always has to check inside. A victim of his own flexibility, because Storey looked all at sea on the left.
  7. How did the other 10 teams who changed manager mid-season get on?
  8. Last season was a grim struggle. Monk and Pulis putting ten men behind the ball. 5 centre-halves at Norwich. 20% possession against Reading. No goalscorer in double figures. Players regularly getting sent off as we chased shadows. By the end, Darren Moore fighting for his life in hospital, and the team grimly staying in the mathematical race for safety despite seemingly losing every week. Not winning a single point after falling behind until the last game of the season. We pretty much hit rock bottom. This close season there were shoots of optimism. A clearout of all the deadwood and high wage earners. A few seasoned pros, unknown foreigners and young players on the way in. A change of style, wanting to play on the front foot, pass the ball - use the talents of Barry Bannan rather than hoof it over his head. It took a while to bed in. Despite a couple of wins over Donny and Rotherham, our team was a bit stodgy. The 4-2-3-1 didn't really work. We had a tendency to over-play at the back and the wide players in the 3 in attacking midfield weren't a goal threat. Plymouth and then Oxford trampled all over us. Then a frustrating run of 4 draws in October put us well off the pace. Slowly but surely we discovered a new team. The 3-0 win against Sunderland was one of the first times we really started to play proper football. We suffered an injury crisis that meant Johnson, Brennan, Paterson, anyone with a pulse, has to fill in at Centre Back. Then Covid struck, just as we had seemingly put the injuries behind us. Flattened by Covid and unable to train we got thrashed 5-0 by Sunderland and lost again at Shrewsbury. But then, suddenly, everything started to gel. With defensive reinforcements and our new signings bedding in we clicked into gear. A decent Plymouth team were hammered 4-2 (a scoreline that flattered them). Ipswich, Wigan, Charlton swept aside. We smashed six past Cambridge, five past Burton. The playing out from the back started to work, mixing it up with more direct play when needed. Liam Palmer and Sam Hutchinson adapted perfectly as a wide centre-halves. Jack Hunt and Marvin Johnson flying down the wings. Luongo, Bannan and Byers formed a midfield with grit, poise and style. And Lee Gregory, chasing everything down and smashing them in up top. Teams began to fear coming to Hillsborough again. The away form that eluded us suddenly clicked, 3-2 wins over MK Dons and Fleetwood. Then in front of a full house, a 4-1 procession against Portsmouth. Suddenly when we go 1-0 down we are not dead and buried. Windass's mis-kick and volley in the last minute against MK. Bannan's 30-yarders against Burton. Gregory's 2 goals in 45 seconds at Fleetwood. Bannan's goal of the season at MK Dons. 85 points, 78 goals. Unfortunately, it ended in disappointment. A muscle injury in the last 10 minutes against Portsmouth. A skidding ball and a slip at the Stadium of Light. And a team running on empty and over-committing in injury time trying to secure a place at Wembley. But we've come a long way. This season has had more ups than downs. It took us two years to get promoted in 2003-05 and 2010-12, and Darren Moore will see that we do the same in 2021-23, only this time as Champions. A few duds will be shipped out, and with a stable environment and minor surgery rather than a radical overhaul, you can be sure that better signings will be on the way in. Keep the faith and Up The Owls.
  9. I know none of us want to. But one last time with feeling for the Owlstalk record books.
  10. Here is Neil's record against Wednesday. Very good at home, but very poor at Hillsborough, with a couple of heavy defeats thrown in: 2015 - Norwich City 2 v SWFC 0 2016 - Norwich City 0 v SWFC 0 2017 - SWFC 5 v Norwich City 1 2017 - Preston North End 1 v SWFC 0 2018 - SWFC 4 v Preston North End 1 2018 - SWFC 1 v Preston North End 0 2019 - Preston North End 3 v SWFC 3 2019 - Preston North End 2 v SWFC 1 2020 - SWFC 1 v Preston North End 3 2020 - Preston North End 1 v SWFC 0 2021 - SWFC 1 v Preston North End 0 2022 - Sunderland 1 v SWFC 0 Neil at Home: P7 W5 D2 L0, For: 10, Against: 4 Neil at Hillsborough: P5 W1 D0 L4, For: 5, Against: 12
  11. We've been great at home this season, but winning by 2 goals will be difficult. There is a big disparity between the top half of the table and the bottom half - so while we've crushed a lot of the bottom half, our home record against the better teams with 70 pts or more is a bit more even: Wigan - 1-0 win Rotherham - 0-2 loss MK Dons - 2-1 win Sunderland - 3-0 win Wycombe - 2-2 draw Plymouth - 4-2 win & 0-0 draw Oxford - 1-2 loss Bolton - 1-0 win Portsmouth - 4-1 win Ipswich - 1-0 win So out of those 11 games, 4 of those results would see us eliminated, 4 go into extra time, and only 3 be enough to win the tie outright. It will be a very different Sunderland team to the Lee Johnson team that came for an open game in October. Expect they will play more like the Rotherham team, sit deep and look to frustrate us. Going to be all about making a few chances count rather than having 20+ shots at goal like against the likes of Charlton, Cambridge, Burton, etc.
  12. There's an Argentina Owls supporters club on Twitter - you should get in touch with them. I imagine there would be one or two sports bars with the means to show it if you asked in advance.
  13. 16 sets of votes in total and the final scores are: Peacock-Farrell: 6.4 Storey: 6.63 - MoM Dean: 6.56 Hutchinson: 5.5 Palmer: 6.4 Johnson: 5.7 Luongo: 6.0 Byers: 5.4 Bannan: 5.3 Berahino: 5.0 Gregory: 5.9 Windass: 5.9 Dele-Bashiru: 5.8
  14. They are quite a young team and I think perhaps emotionally invested a lot into tonight. Will see how they raise themselves up for the 2nd leg. Maybe Neil will know this and shuffle his players.
  15. If that is true it is shocking. EFL actively trying to stop fans watch football and the clubs make money. If it is true, EFL should refund the 3k x £20 ticket receipts lost to both clubs.
  16. Jogging back? He's absolutely busted a gut today - up and down the pitch all 95 minutes. Probably covered more grass and did more sprints than anyone else on the pitch. So many comments written based on something that happened 3 seasons ago.
  17. I saw that, but not sure how. Surely a one-on-one with the keeper is worth about 0.5, and then tapping the rebound into an empty net must be about 0.9. And as for our 0.5 - what was that for? Gregory's header from miles out wide?
  18. Reminded me a bit of a late Monk/Pulis game. Bannan didn't necessarily do much wrong, but we were just launching it over his head for the first 70 minutes.
  19. Thought Palmer played well. We'll see Hunt on Monday.
  20. Peacock-Farrell: 7 Storey: 7.5 Dean: 7 Hutchinson: 5.5 Palmer: 8 Johnson: 6 Luongo: 6 Byers: 5.5 Bannan: 5.5 Berahino: 6 (didn't see much of the ball) Gregory: 6 (see Berahino) Windass: 6 Dele-Bashiru: 6 Disappointing. Not brave enough on the ball and could have easily lost by more. Big players need to step up at Hillsborough now.
  21. Would have preferred to see Hunt, but maybe there are doubts Hunt can play 2 x 90 minutes in 3 days, so reasoning its best to have him fresh for the 2nd leg.
  22. £24m is from last year's accounts. He has already slashed the wage bill by 50% - Rhodes, Izzy Brown, Kachunga, Harris, Green, Borner, Westwood, Lees, Penney, Marriott, van Aken, Reach, Odubajo, all gone. Bannan signed on reduced terms, Dawson loaned out. Players on much lower wages brought in.
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