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Boro v Tottenham (A) 0-1

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Change formation? Have a different game plan up his sleeve?

 

That's what I think.

 

Play a narrow diamond, have Clayton at the base and Ramirez at the top (Number 10) then have two of Guedioura, De Roon and Forshaw playing either side and then have Negredo and another up top.

 

We should stop trying to play with wingers, because we barely have an effective one. Let the width come from George and Fabio

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Looking at the bench I think we were limited to what we could change really. Two up top would mean Traore and Downing on the wings and like I said both were struggling.

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It must be hard to play a system that has brought you success then stops working, when things go wrong everyone reverts to what they know and to some extent players you know, Karanka won't change, we won't change, it's a risk and I don't think there's a Spanish word for risk, I cannot see any change until we're at the last horse saloon then I don't think it'll be wholesale just tweeks, just keep the faith UTB

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Traore drifted central a few times against West Brom and he looked menacing. We should try him in the middle behind the striker.

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For this match in particular, I think we played the right system. Barring a stupid foul by Espinosa, we looked fine and lucky. Some of the defending was last ditch but we were getting the rub of the green and they couldn't break through us. When they did, there were 3-4 players waiting to block any attempt on goal.

 

The longer the game went on, the more likely Spurs were to open up and throw everything they had at us and we were clearly hoping this would happen sooner with our attempts to counter through Traore. With the players we have vs. the players they have, that was literally the best we could hope for. Nobody we have is good enough to make the most of Walker's runs up the pitch so we couldn't make use of that space. Traore couldn't get hold of the ball because he was immediately hounded by Davies, Wanyama and Dembele. Negredo then couldn't get anyone close to him because our midfield 3 needed to prioritise keeping their shape to ensure no breaks were made.

 

At the end of the day, I'm not going to judge our quality going forward against a team like Spurs at their own ground. We're lucky about many things in that game. Some misfired shots, some blocked shots, a keeper who I still personally think was lucky to be on the pitch... by the time that ball came to Son, we had already exhausted our luck in the game and though I still think Espinosa should have done better, his action to cause the penalty was simply a personification of our luck running out.

 

Home games and games against teams around us in general are where the problems need to be addressed, starting again with Everton.

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At the end of the day, I'm not going to judge our quality going forward against a team like Spurs at their own ground.

 

It's no better against the likes of West Ham, West Brom or Watford. Something needs to change. We aren't going to defend our way out of the relegation zone if we get sucked in next weekend.

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For this match in particular, I think we played the right system. Barring a stupid foul by Espinosa, we looked fine and lucky. Some of the defending was last ditch but we were getting the rub of the green and they couldn't break through us. When they did, there were 3-4 players waiting to block any attempt on goal.

 

The longer the game went on, the more likely Spurs were to open up and throw everything they had at us and we were clearly hoping this would happen sooner with our attempts to counter through Traore. With the players we have vs. the players they have, that was literally the best we could hope for. Nobody we have is good enough to make the most of Walker's runs up the pitch so we couldn't make use of that space. Traore couldn't get hold of the ball because he was immediately hounded by Davies, Wanyama and Dembele. Negredo then couldn't get anyone close to him because our midfield 3 needed to prioritise keeping their shape to ensure no breaks were made.

 

At the end of the day, I'm not going to judge our quality going forward against a team like Spurs at their own ground. We're lucky about many things in that game. Some misfired shots, some blocked shots, a keeper who I still personally think was lucky to be on the pitch... by the time that ball came to Son, we had already exhausted our luck in the game and though I still think Espinosa should have done better, his action to cause the penalty was simply a personification of our luck running out.

 

Home games and games against teams around us in general are where the problems need to be addressed, starting again with Everton.

 

I agree with pretty much all of that wilsoncgp, regarding the Spurs game and the way we approached it. I was at the game, and at times it was fairly last-ditched defending, but we did OK.

 

However, there was an interesting interview with Koeman on MoTD after the Everton v Bournemouth match. He said that during their game there were two or three system changes (across both managers)... and that was why the match 'ebbed and flowed' so much. He said it was a good tactical battle.

 

It made me wonder..... (and this isn't a dig against our manager before anyone goes off on one).... but how often do we ever see a proper system change during a game to get us back in to it? I actually don't think we do. We're a bit too one-dimensional.

 

Any [constructive] thoughts on that?

 

Cheers.

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It's a tough one for Karanka, I think when we are playing anyone outside the top 6/7 we need a change of strategy slightly because we are not winning enough games.

 

I've heard a few people suggest going back to 4-2-3-1 like last season, the problem with this is that I don't think we've got two midfielders who are good enough. The likes of Clayton/Forshaw/De-Roon will get totally overrun against most teams, going to 4-3-3 made up for their lack of ability by putting another body in there.

 

Defensively we are more solid but offer very little going forward with 4-3-3, one change I would like to see is the team playing with more tempo and intensity. When we are playing games at home lately we seem to start with very little tempo in our games, I'd like to see us come flying out of the traps a little bit more and press teams at home. Compare how we started the game against Stoke at home or Brighton at the end of last season with the more recent home fixtures.

 

It will get to the point soon where we have to change because a point a game will not be enough.

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At the end of the day, I'm not going to judge our quality going forward against a team like Spurs at their own ground.

 

It's no better against the likes of West Ham, West Brom or Watford. Something needs to change. We aren't going to defend our way out of the relegation zone if we get sucked in next weekend.

 

That's a fair comment and I agree with that. I was just saying I'm not going to get sucked into saying how despicable our attack was for this game because we were away at Chelsea's closest title contenders. I wouldn't even say our squad is as good as some of the teams around us, never mind a team who have barely dropped any points at home and were at pretty much full strength.

 

Our approach to the Everton and Palace games will be much more telling, just as the games you mentioned previously have shown. We do have to do something to get the best out of the players we have, I just worry watching them that they just aren't good enough to do anything other than defend, something we knew about and failed to address in the window.

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I think Palace is the big test. If we go away there and do what we've done the entire season and play defensively as lose then it's a disaster.

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