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Thread: Luxembourg v Republic of Ireland - Sunday, 14th November 2021 - 2022 World Cup Qualif

  1. #221
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    Quote Originally Posted by Olé Olé View Post
    But we dominated from 62 minutes on when Knight (not Browne) came in. Kenny has learned a lesson now with regards to playing 3 forwards/strikers there. He probably should have learned it against Azerbaijan but hopefully the penny has dropped.

    Either way, all this revisionism and hypothesizing is rubbish. We had chances in the first 62 minutes too. We should have had a penalty. Duffy was pushed. A keeper that Kenny has given his head to made a top notch save. Kenny made the substitute- he didn't stumble onto it.

    The game finished 3-0. If Luxembourg's goal had been allowed to stand how do you even know how the game would have finished? Why wouldn't it have been as likely to finish 3-1?

    I've been dragged down the rabbit hole now but some of this talked is so frustrating.

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  3. #222
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    Just a few thoughts on Kenny's management, might as well put them in this thread:

    - We look well-coached, organised, and purposeful. There’s a cohesive gameplan, with individual players allowed to play heads-up football, unlike under Trap or MON. We have a reasonably settled core of Baz, Egan, Duffy, Doherty, Cullen, Hendrick and Robinson, with the other places up for grabs between Coleman/Omo, McClean/Stevens, Idah/Ogbene/McGrath/Knight, and decent options coming through. We’re prepared to go more direct (long passes, not aimless punts) when we’re being closed down too aggressively and can’t play through the press. Front players have the freedom to come deep if needed. There’s some flexibility in the forward line. It’s all very 'modern' and it’s very welcome.

    - There aren’t any real contentious selections in the squad or starting XI. I’m happy to sacrifice Clark if it means more gametime for Nathan Collins, DOS and Omobamidele. Clark’s not going to get ahead of Egan as a LCB, so there’s no point in him coming over, training, and sitting on the bench when those mentioned would actually benefit from the experience. As for Scott Hogan, he might be a half-decent finisher in the Championship, a la Alan Lee or Leon Best; but from what I’ve seen, doesn’t have the pace, touch, mobility, power, or hold-up play to be a significant centre-forward for us on a Walters/Doyle/Long scale, and unlike Idah and Parrott, he’s not going to get better. That’s a reasonable value call from Kenny, not a stubborn decision, or one made out of spite or lack of vision.

    - We’re generally playing lads in their most effective positions. We don’t have any genuinely mad stuff like the old days – Kilbane/O’Shea playing central midfield, or Simon Cox/Andy Keogh on the wing. Nobody's confused as to their role on the pitch.

    - The spirit in the camp seems positive and encouraging. No unnecessary abrasiveness with the players. Nothing like Roy Keane starting fights with the likes of Walters and Arter, or holding a grudge against Damien Delaney; or Trap making an example of Andy Reid for being too creative.

    - Despite 4-3-3 working well for the U21s, it was a mistake to start out developing the formation for the senior side in 2020 when we didn't have the talent at #10, or the kind of out-and-out wingers to make it work. It was a mistake to pick Travers against Serbia. It was a mistake to pick James Collins against Luxembourg at home (in fact, it's always a mistake to pick James Collins, against anybody). It was a mistake to drop McGrath and play Connolly-Idah-Parrott, with no attacking midfielder, against Azerbaijan. But Kenny has learned from those mistakes, and evidently taken up suggestions from backroom staff about how to improve things. He hasn't doubled down on his mistakes, like some of our more egotistical or tyrannical managers in the past.

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  5. #223
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    Been busy with a new role at work so haven't been chipping in much in recent weeks... but one thing that strikes me as real progress is seeing an Irish team taking to the pitch not looking like they're two-down and beaten before the kick-off. I've been banging the drum on improving the psychology of the team since Trap's gaslighting days, and when you see how happy players are now it points to something positive happening.
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  7. #224
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    Quote Originally Posted by TonyD View Post
    Yeah, cos the improvement couldn’t possibly be down to the manager, or other factors, such as the emergence and growing experience of the young players, the emergence of Callum Robinson as a decent striker. No, that couldn’t possibly be it.

    Really, the lengths that people will go to to avoid giving Kenny any sort of credit are just bizarre.
    [QUOTE=Supreme feet;. As for Scott Hogan, he might be a half-decent finisher in the Championship, a la Alan Lee or Leon Best; but from what I’ve seen, doesn’t have the pace, touch, mobility, power, or hold-up play to be a significant centre-forward for us on a Walters/Doyle/Long scale, and unlike Idah and Parrott, he’s not going to get better. That’s a reasonable value call from Kenny, not a stubborn decision, or one made out of spite or lack of vision.[/QUOTE]

    I think it would be a reasonable call if it had an evidential basis. Hogan hasn’t played, and as far as I can recall hasn’t been picked by Kenny. He’s got a better scoring record than Collins and contrary to what you say is much more mobile and has better touch. I think it’s reasonable to question a manager who has experimented with so many players, as to why someone with a decent record in an area where we are struggling has never been picked. Sure Idah and Parrott might get better, so let’s wait for that to happen before expecting them to perform at this level. I’m not sure that Idah’s experiences to date have done a great deal for his confidence or development. The counter example would be Keane - his record is not comparable to Hogan’s averaging a goal every six games (Hogan a goal every 3 games). He’s playing in a lower level and isn’t going to get any better either. So what’s the difference. There have been hits and misses with Kenny’s selection and it’s helped him to mould a decent looking team, but there have also been strange omissions and Hogan is one of those.

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  9. #225
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    THought this article was very fair -> https://www.independent.ie/sport/soc...-41051919.html

    Duffys goal opened them up, this was a game too many for them, on 70 two of their players were down with cramp. Up to that point they had the better chances, just like home. 0-3 definitely flattered us.

    ONe thing I was surprised not to read on the way back was Knights volley back was unreal, its one of the best pieces of individual skill I've seen in a long time, yes he wasnt marked and the defending was brutal, but the pace he was sprinting at and the height and distance to pull it back perfectly across goal like that was class. Hopefully he can get the consistency of that level of performance against better opposition.

    the 1-2 around the box is being replaced more often with over the top balls or long balls from bazunu, his place kicking is unreal, its getting better each game. We're a completely different side from 12 months ago or the first handful of games like someone pointed out on another thread last week. Strategy, tactics, formation all changed - whether thats all down to Barry or Kenny or a mixture it's definitely much better than what we were initially playing under Kenny. One thing I noticed was barry warming them up right before kick off, he had them really fired up, when lux were just going through the motions.

    Sadly we've got the right balance too late between youngsters and consistent more experienced players, could have been a very different campaign had that been the case from the start - that and a poor Portugal by their standards. They deserved exactly what they got in the end, and if they dont qualify they can put that down to stupid selection and gameplan against us at home.

    Theres definitely a bond with the players and fans that I haven't witnessed since maybe france away 12 years ago. Seeing the players the next day all very unassuming and fairly quiet, clobber aside but thats the common malaise of all footballers, no fuss or attention. IT was refreshing, I think we've got a very good group of honest, decent lads now - perhaps the inexperience of youth or the still-finding-myself at this level but hopefully it stays that way.
    Last edited by paul_oshea; 16/11/2021 at 4:51 PM.
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  10. #226
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    Quote Originally Posted by geysir View Post
    As Stutts pointed out, it was curious why McClean was selected ahead of Stevens. But aside from McClean making numerous basic technical errors, it should be added that he just never gives up when other players (Doherty and Hendrick) were gasping. He managed to sprint back often for defensive cover, crucially so on 2 occasions and at the end his fitness and concentration on the 90th minute, his control and execution of the cross field pass to land on a sixpence was the technical highlight of the game. Kenny did not substitute him. We won't miss him when he goes but at the same time we will miss him, his attitude is just so positive when lesser mortals would be thinking they're an imposter.

    Unusually so for an almost dead rubber game, I enjoyed it immensely even through the ping pong mistakes from both teams. The atmosphere was cracking and the large raucous Irish support had a ball. We were crap in the 2nd half until suddenly we weren't, when our football began to make sense.
    I wanted to quote this in two different pieces, but anyway ya I'm glad someone pointed out, that ball was absolutely magnificent and unlike normal mcclean he looked up and saw the space and spotted the run of Knight, again ya poor covering defensively and poor tracking(but as pointed out and to the second CTRL+B bit Lux were shagged).

    We looked much better cos we had broken them, they stopped trying, werent tracking, one lad was praying putting his hands up when Ireland were on the counter, we couldnt understand in the stands what he was at at all - he wanted to come off, sometime to be doing it!

    On the Brady/Giles revisionism, I've heard a lot of what they said, and things like struggling 35 years ago its very different to now when travelling, layovers, food, hotels etc are all well setup and convenient, pitches are better etc etc. But I do believe there's a little bit of jealousy on their parts.
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  11. #227
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eminence Grise View Post
    Been busy with a new role at work so haven't been chipping in much in recent weeks... but one thing that strikes me as real progress is seeing an Irish team taking to the pitch not looking like they're two-down and beaten before the kick-off. I've been banging the drum on improving the psychology of the team since Trap's gaslighting days, and when you see how happy players are now it points to something positive happening.
    Ya I cant really describe the look on the players when they came over to the corner after Duffys goal, but it was like nothing I had seen in a very long time. They were just in awe and overwhelmingly excited and happy with a real steely determined look on their faces. They looked like lads who'd grown up together and all ended up playing football for Ireland.
    I'm a bloke,I'm an ocker
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  12. #228
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    Quote Originally Posted by third policeman View Post
    I think it would be a reasonable call if it had an evidential basis. Hogan hasn’t played, and as far as I can recall hasn’t been picked by Kenny. He’s got a better scoring record than Collins and contrary to what you say is much more mobile and has better touch. I think it’s reasonable to question a manager who has experimented with so many players, as to why someone with a decent record in an area where we are struggling has never been picked. Sure Idah and Parrott might get better, so let’s wait for that to happen before expecting them to perform at this level. I’m not sure that Idah’s experiences to date have done a great deal for his confidence or development. The counter example would be Keane - his record is not comparable to Hogan’s averaging a goal every six games (Hogan a goal every 3 games). He’s playing in a lower level and isn’t going to get any better either. So what’s the difference. There have been hits and misses with Kenny’s selection and it’s helped him to mould a decent looking team, but there have also been strange omissions and Hogan is one of those.
    I generally agree with this, but I think Kenny(or andrews or barry or all 3) feels that a sacrifice is alright if its for the overall benefit of the style that the team is trying to play, that goals can come from elsewhere or others because of the way the team plays. I mentioned back before the OCtober games about Ogbene looking very good in training in the snippet the FAI had put up and would it be a surprise for him to get the nod, I think he came on as a sub and started the next game , and has proved just that. He is playing in a system that suits him and his pace and he and both Ireland are mutually benefitting. But I dont think he would have the same impact at club level, if hes just told stay on the wing all the time and out wide. Simply put we are using his best asset to its greatest effect - his pace.
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  13. #229
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    Will this be the first time in years we can have a proper FAI Senior goal of the year?

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  15. #230
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    Quote Originally Posted by paul_oshea View Post

    On the Brady/Giles revisionism, I've heard a lot of what they said, and things like struggling 35 years ago its very different to now when travelling, layovers, food, hotels etc are all well setup and convenient, pitches are better etc etc. But I do believe there's a little bit of jealousy on their parts.
    We have struggled most times against 5th seeded teams, no matter whether the venue was reached by charter flight or indirect flight.
    In modern times 4 competitive games away against 5th seeded Georgia, single goal victories in 3 of them plus the drawn game and Mainz wasn't exactly Tiblisi.

    In 1983 with Brady and a team chock full of Man U, Liverpool, Spurs and Arsenal players against a Maltese team of waiters and foyer attendants, it took a last minute back heel from Stapleton to win it. .
    In stark contrast to all the Georgia games, Kenny is giving us jelly and ice cream.
    Last edited by geysir; 17/11/2021 at 10:51 PM.

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  17. #231
    Biased against YOUR club pineapple stu's Avatar
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    I'm not sure how comparable 1980s games are given they were generally played on a pitch of muck/stones/glass and the minnow could knock the ball back to the keeper every time an opposition player got within earshot.

  18. #232
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    Well, in the campaign Geysir refers to we beat Malta 8-0 at Dalyer (hardly a bowling green in those days - even today!) and only 1-0 away, with a goal almost as late as Ollie O'Neill's on Tuesday.

    I don't think it matters how far back you go but 3 goal away wins are a rarity in any generation. We've two in a row now. Highly telegenic goals are a rarity in any generation. We've scored plenty recently.

    It might mean nothing but I'm enjoying it while it lasts and this week in general has been great with the seniors, U21s and U19s. I think Irish football might be entering an exciting period. The public have really connected with the team and the Kenny project, there seems to be a great atmosphere in the squad and results and performances are improving. The young players breaking through are very promising and many have strong and identifiable connections to the domestic game.

    It might be a blip or it might be the start of something like the Michael O'Neill spell at NI, the Wales revival that began with Speed or Scotland's recent burst of form.

  19. #233
    Biased against YOUR club pineapple stu's Avatar
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    True on the 8-0 - the minnows rarely travelled well in those days. Heck, Malta lost 3-2 at home to Spain (an 84th minute goal) but then got thumped 12-1 in Spain. And that only mattered because Iceland held Holland at home, having been comfortably beaten away. I still think it's a different game from a different era, and not really comparable to now.

    But yeah, two 3-0 away wins is certainly nice. It's partly why I'd like to see a slightly stronger Nations League group than others just to see where we're really at.

  20. #234
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    Being honest, I'll take the handiest group possible in the NL, because if it gives you a decent chance to win the group, there are plenty upsides.

    You get in amongst the big boys in NL 24, getting huge revenue and huge coverage of the game in the country

    You get Pot 1 or at worst Pot 2 seedings for Euros

    You get almost guaranteed play off spots for Euros if you don't qualify 1 or 2, with a better than average chance those play offs will come against the poorer Path B teams or at least the fifth best Path C teams

    And you get a better than average chance of getting into WC play off spots.. Look at Austria and Hungary getting into play offs this time

    The team is going to develop year on year.. getting up to a higher level can only be good in the long run.. doing it the hard way or the easy way? I'll take the easy way anytime

  21. #235
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    Yeah I don't care about testing ourselves against better teams right now. Give us the softest group possible. Win the group, get a better seeding and also basically secure a playoff spot before a ball is kicked in the 2024 qualifiers.

    Getting promoted would allow us to test ourselves after that. Would also put us in a good spot to get a play-offs for the 2026 WC with a good showing against them.

  22. #236
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    I'd agree with that. The worst sides in the NL pot are better than Luxembourg. Doing well in a weak NL group would be a big step forward.
    It's funny how you can't spread carcinogens in an office by smoking, but you can cough and cough and cough.

  23. #237
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    Yep, going into a campaign 90% assured of at least a play off would take pressure off all right

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