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About Holmowl

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  1. Holmowl

    Season preview

    On paper a top six squad. In Westwood one of the best keepers outside the Prem. In Tom Lees, a CB capable of stepping up to the next level with a Burnley, Watford, Huddersfield etc without a doubt. Barry Bannan has been one of the division’s top CMs for 3 seasons. The heartbeat of any team. Neutrals and pundits pick him as MoM game in game out. Some fans criticise his lack of goals, but if he added 6/7 goals a season to his otherwise brilliance he wouldn’t be playing for Wednesday! Adam Reach as LWB, LW or LB is an unbelievable ever-present workhorse. Doesn’t have the pace of a Bale or the tricks of a Waddle but is pacy enough and can run and run and run and run. As with Bannan, if he could turn his 3 goals per season into 7 goals per season he wouldn’t be here. Forestieri’s role is key. Carvalhal saw him more as an out and out striker, but he was too often bullied out of games. In around 25% of games he played wide and he and the team scored for fun. Our new manager has employed him in a wider role so far and if he continues to do so we may have this season’s Knockaert or Ince. Our 6 foot 5 strikers, Joao and Nuhiu went from non-starters to unplayable late season. The beast Nuhiu scored 9 goals in 8 games, and the lightning Joao scored 7 in 14 starts. Added to Forestieri scoring 4 in 5 late-season starts after a long injury layoff we are hugely potent in attack. Gary Hooper and Steven Fletcher are returning from injury giving us unparalleled options at this level.
  2. Holmowl


    Good points. Your view on Jones goes against popular opinion on here, but you are right. Our record when he plays is really good. Quiet but highly efficient. A second-tier Gareth Barry.
  3. Anything other than a Joao-Nuhiu-Forestieri frontline in August would have been barmy. They were magnificent in April. Hooper and Fletcher will have their time, but it shouldn’t have been at the start of the season.
  4. Holmowl


    I think we only have two genuine “crocks”, in Matias and Abdi. Their availability record is ludicrous, added to which Matias has been sent off twice in quick succession which suggests he is almost a hopeless case unless Jos can work some magic. Hutch comes close, though again Jos might be able to calm him down. He is his own worst enemy making lunging tackles that risk injury to even the healthiest specimen, let alone the fragile Hutch. However, his injury record when played at the back is spotless. Personally I think he is one of our best CBs by some distance. Others disagree. Again personally I think him overrated in CM, and his injury record there is dire. Hooper, Forestieri and Fletcher have had a few dodgy seasons injury-wise, but I think we will see them handled better now and rotated. It will test fans’ patience because they hate seeing their favourites ‘dropped’ when playing well. But in a 50-55 game season, and with players in their late 20s and early 30s it’s the only sensible approach. Plus, we have an army of forwards and Joao, Hooper, Forestieri, Fletcher and Nuhiu are a terrifying group if they can be kept much fitter.
  5. Holmowl

    Championship top scorer odds

    Agree completely. Our forwards are our strongest asset and we should set up to our strength.
  6. Holmowl

    Championship top scorer odds

    I am seeing a therapist who suggests limiting my Forestieri out wide posts to one per week. It’s a struggle but if it gets my wife and kids back....
  7. Holmowl


    Too flakey of mind and body. 62 minutes and 432 minutes played over the last two seasons. He’s young and carries no weight. There’s something massively wrong. If Jos can work on his mind and body maybe we will get ~1000 minutes out of him over the season to give Forestieri and Joao some time off. That would be a nice bonus.
  8. Holmowl

    Championship top scorer odds

    If Jos avoids the mistake of playing him as a central striker I see every chance he will be the league top scorer. His record from a wider role over 3 seasons is almost one per game! Suits him and above all it suits the team.
  9. We are signing Jean Spells from Bordeaux? Great news. No, I agree. Lets be honest Joao and Nuhiu were 6th and 7th choice and their partnership was off the scale. It does bode well.
  10. Here’s last season:- Nuhiu 14 Hooper 11 Joao 9 Rhodes 7 Forestieri 5 Fletcher 3 Matias 1 Winnall 1 This 51 goals was way better than the more successful 16/17 season. I think this season will also see the goals spread around the forwards. None of forwards played anywhere near half a season last year, so to guess our top scorer is really dependent on this year’s injuries. The really great news is that all of our most likely forwards, Hooper, Fletcher, Forestieri, Joao and Nuhiu have had recent periods when they have been full of goals. If Jos can look after them, and plays similar adventurous football to the back end, I think this group of superb Championship forwards will bag more than enough.
  11. Holmowl

    Getting the best out of FF

    Most fans agree with you. Fortunately it looks like Jos does too. A full season of FF playing widest of 3 forwards and widest of a 4 man midfield, with two proper strikers, is extremely exciting. When FF lined-up as striker at Preston on the first day of last season my heart sank.
  12. Holmowl

    Getting the best out of FF

    Agree with this. 433 was excellent for the team and suited FF down to the ground. 442 was successful when FF played wide left. The results bettered any other formation over the past 3 seasons. However, played as a twin-striker in a 442 or 352 hasnt worked. It’s possible Jos will get something different out of FF in a front two, but I doubt it.
  13. Get down with the youth.......Dara o Breen
  14. Welome to Mathstalk. How about not messing about with the sample size at all? Surely the last two seasons with every minute of every game Tor every player is a fair sample. BUT, leaving this to one side, even using your figures, my point is that Fletcher should not be described as a crock. If some fans dislike him, or think he is past his best, that’s fair game, but to couch it in “he’s a crock” doesn’t stand up to scrutiny in our squad.
  15. It tells us that four of our six forwards are unlikely to play even half a season ( a season = 4140 minutes not including cups and Play-offs). We don’t know about the brittleness of Joao and Nuhiu. Neither has had long runs in the side so we don’t yet know if their bodies can muster 3-4000 minutes in a season. This is the average over the two seasons Fletcher has been here:- Hooper 1754 minutes Fletcher 1704 Forestieri 1695 Matias 238 Yet Fletcher is called a crock throughout this thread. By contrast, Forestieri’s fitness is not questioned, yet has had one season in his entire career where he has played regularly, 15/16. A combination of knocks, longer-term injuries, fatigue, suspensions, moods and not being picked have seen him have considerable time off in all other seasons. Fletcher has had periods for us where he has been our best or only attacker. In the 16/17 spell when Hooper and FF were out and Joao was a liability I saw Fletch win flick-one and turn and chase them himself!!! He, above all others, dragged us into the second season Play-off. And he nearly got us into the final and arguably it was his injury and substitution that saw Huddersfield gain dominance. His unselfishness costs him dearly. Can you imagine the pain he was enduring in that semi, to stay on the pitch for 62 minutes, leaving reluctantly when his job was done, to give his agonized legs chance to make the final? Frankly it sickens me to read fans saying that his departure would be the best Summer business. Some of those same fans will have had it in for Nuhiu and/or Joao. Yet each of those have come through and shone under a proper manager. I hope Fletcher stays. Jos will treat him, Hooper, Forestieri, Nuhiu and Joao commensurate with their own individual needs, and each will shine at different stages of matches and the season.