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The Value Of Non Scoring Strikers?


razorbeef:

There are quite a few things in life that I do not understand. There are things like why we call it a gambole, while everywhere else it’s called a rolly-polly? Why do I get very cold every winter despite living through at least one for every year of my life? And how can I be the only person in the world that just isn’t that into eggs?

Recently, however, there are has been something that has left me well and truly stumped. It is a concept which, as Villa fans, should be very close to our hearts. What is the value to a football team of strikers that do not score goals?

Don’t get me wrong, there is a very strong chance that the reason I don’t understand this is because, despite what I think (and presumed my successes on Football Manager had proved), I do not know that much about football tactics and am not a manager of a football club. It just seems to me it has become something that we have accepted, the idea that our strikers do not need to score goals for them to be performing their role in the team.

It is logic that does not work when you apply it to other areas of life. In the morning, when I need to get up, I set my alarm. My alarm clock isn’t there because it fits in with the other electrical items in my room (it does, they’re mostly black in colour), or because setting my alarm has become part of my pre-bed ritual and, as I always seem to sleep, it must be performing it’s role. No, the reason I set it is because every morning, without fail, its shrill drone wakes me up.

At the moment (the freak events of the semi-final ignored, mainly because they would completely ruin my point and the idea for the article was spawned pre 6-4) Villa have a problem scoring enough goals to win games, so why not sign a striker that scores the goals that will help us to climb the table. I appreciate that there may be factors that I am unaware of, and for whatever reason we may not be able to sign this magical, mythical, wonderful striker-hero, but we do not seem interested in even attempting to rectify the situation. This can be illustrated in the fact that we have only really spent 7 million pounds on strikers in Harewood (who looks like the child of John McCain and the Crazy Frog) and Emile Heskey. I haven’t forgotten about Big John, but there was no outlay on him as it was a straight swap with Baros. It would seem to me that we have had this problem for a long time, and not since Dwight Yorke have we had a striker that is truly good enough to keep in upper reaches of the Premier League.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am a massive O’Neill fan. I rate him becoming Villa manager as one of the most exciting things that has ever happened to me, that and the day that I first discovered Spicy Tomato Snaps. He just strikes me as a stubborn man, and while it can be a strength, on this issue it’s a weakness. It boils down to the fact that if we had a truly quality forward, we could have been well on our way to the Champions League by now. That is what is so frustrating, because the rest of it has come together so nicely. Dunne and Collins in the centre of the Villa defence look like they grew there, Young and Downing are getting up and down the wings better than any other wide players in the league, and James Milner has slipped into the middle of the pitch like it was a buttery bath-tub. That is why I do not understand why we do not pursue a striker able to change games for us the way Fernando Torres did for Liverpool when they were last in B6.

It might just be that, as I stated earlier, I am not a football manager, so do not understand the essential value of a 6 foot something shot shy forward in a Premier League team. It might turn out that in the end, Martin had it all planned out. He knew Emile would take a year to settle before becoming the first Villa player to score a hat-trick in a major European Final. He knew that giving Steve Sidwell 4 minutes a week would put him in perfect condition for his FA Cup Final Tour de Force against a terrified Chelsea, and he knew from day one it would end in glory. Let’s face it. It wouldn’t be the first time he’s proved his doubters wrong.




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The Journalist

Writer: Razorbeef Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday January 22 2010

Time: 11:44AM

Your Comments

I would have to agree with you there. I feel if we signed the likes of Darren Bent in the summer we wouldnt have this issue of scoring goals.
funnyclub
I would have to agree with you there. I feel if we signed the likes of Darren Bent in the summer we wouldnt have this issue of scoring goals.
funnyclub
It is something we all as Villa know and frustrates us everyweek ~ all i would say in O'Neil's defence (without looking at the past and saying we should have / could have) what top strikers are they available? although financially secure we aren't Citeh so can't just pop out and get Tevez & Adebeyor. Also our wage structure will prevent us from getting any short term fixes like Ruud. If this were on Football Manager and you were in charge, who would you buy? (please also remember to follow O'Neils criteria of only English or existing Premiership players!)
davidsands1982
It is something we all as Villa know and frustrates us everyweek ~ all i would say in O'Neil's defence (without looking at the past and saying we should have / could have) what top strikers are they available? although financially secure we aren't Citeh so can't just pop out and get Tevez & Adebeyor. Also our wage structure will prevent us from getting any short term fixes like Ruud. If this were on Football Manager and you were in charge, who would you buy? (please also remember to follow O'Neils criteria of only English or existing Premiership players!)
davidsands1982
I agree if you bought Bent from us you would have a great striker on your hands who would fit in your system much more then he did with us. But the problem with this is that tottenham would not sell to you cause you are competition to the 4 place. But the point stays... Villa needs a new goal mashine.
vangogo
I agree if you bought Bent from us you would have a great striker on your hands who would fit in your system much more then he did with us. But the problem with this is that tottenham would not sell to you cause you are competition to the 4 place. But the point stays... Villa needs a new goal mashine.
vangogo
Sorry to say, not convinced Boyd (even if on a free in the summer) is the answer - dearly hope i'm wrong - but i'd score some goals playing again Dundee 4 times every season, ridiculous league. i'd rather see the Fonz given a go.
davidsands1982
Sorry to say, not convinced Boyd (even if on a free in the summer) is the answer - dearly hope i'm wrong - but i'd score some goals playing again Dundee 4 times every season, ridiculous league. i'd rather see the Fonz given a go.
davidsands1982
It is a very valid point that you have made and it does not apply only to Heskey, the other tow are not much better. I wonder what it is that Delfounso does not do that keeps him out of the team. His scoring rate is better than any of the other three, yet he does not get a chance in the Premier League. Is it, I wonder because he needs a different form of support play to be really effective, I don't know? That said, who is there available who could come in and perhaps outscore Delfounso? Not many I would suspect, so why not give him a try, he has scored more than Heskey with a fraction of the games.
Obediah
It is a very valid point that you have made and it does not apply only to Heskey, the other tow are not much better. I wonder what it is that Delfounso does not do that keeps him out of the team. His scoring rate is better than any of the other three, yet he does not get a chance in the Premier League. Is it, I wonder because he needs a different form of support play to be really effective, I don't know? That said, who is there available who could come in and perhaps outscore Delfounso? Not many I would suspect, so why not give him a try, he has scored more than Heskey with a fraction of the games.
Obediah
I also agree. This problem has been frustrating for all of us for sometime. I will say though, our defense has been the most frustrating thing for me but the new back 4 have been superb. )It's nice not to crap it every time the opposition are on the attack). Now that this, having been our major has been solved i've no doubt MON will will sort this, although not in the timeframe that we expect.
magicmerson
I also agree. This problem has been frustrating for all of us for sometime. I will say though, our defense has been the most frustrating thing for me but the new back 4 have been superb. )It's nice not to crap it every time the opposition are on the attack). Now that this, having been our major has been solved i've no doubt MON will will sort this, although not in the timeframe that we expect.
magicmerson
Get ANYONE that is currently scoring to tied us over until the summer when we should be in for a proper long term signing.
magicmerson
Get ANYONE that is currently scoring to tied us over until the summer when we should be in for a proper long term signing.
magicmerson
i do agree that we're a world-class striker away from having a truly great team, but to play devils advocate, until our recent mini baron spell we'd scored in every single league and cup game this season since the opening day. instead of relying on one great goal scorer, O'Neil is sacrificing the striker to instead try and get goals from everyone else in the team
MrZeus
i do agree that we're a world-class striker away from having a truly great team, but to play devils advocate, until our recent mini baron spell we'd scored in every single league and cup game this season since the opening day. instead of relying on one great goal scorer, O'Neil is sacrificing the striker to instead try and get goals from everyone else in the team
MrZeus
Fair comment, however, midfielders should always get you goals goal, it shouldn't be a case of sacrificing the striker. West ham game being a clear case of not having someone up front all the time that can take advantage of situations where the ball is bouncing round the box and needs a toe putting on it.
magicmerson
Fair comment, however, midfielders should always get you goals goal, it shouldn't be a case of sacrificing the striker. West ham game being a clear case of not having someone up front all the time that can take advantage of situations where the ball is bouncing round the box and needs a toe putting on it.
magicmerson
smashing article, i don't think there's a single villa fan who wouldn't take on another striker when considering what we've currently got to pick from.. anyway, i for one am very excited at the prospect of seeing the young ones get a run out tomorrow - likely line-ups, anyone? GK guzan LB young RB beye CB collins CB cuellar/clarke? LM albrighton RM reo-coker CM sidwell CM delph CF delfouneso CF heskey
benji_starsky_avfc
smashing article, i don't think there's a single villa fan who wouldn't take on another striker when considering what we've currently got to pick from.. anyway, i for one am very excited at the prospect of seeing the young ones get a run out tomorrow - likely line-ups, anyone? GK guzan LB young RB beye CB collins CB cuellar/clarke? LM albrighton RM reo-coker CM sidwell CM delph CF delfouneso CF heskey
benji_starsky_avfc
HI Obediah, long time no see! Think Fonz will be correctly introduced at the right pace, he is a great prospect and they'll not want to rush and put too much pressure on. Would love to see more sub appearances from him and surely a shoe in for the FA Cup game tomorrow?
The Fear
HI Obediah, long time no see! Think Fonz will be correctly introduced at the right pace, he is a great prospect and they'll not want to rush and put too much pressure on. Would love to see more sub appearances from him and surely a shoe in for the FA Cup game tomorrow?
The Fear
Interesting point MrZeus, also obviously we all know we need a 20 goal a season striker, but which team doesn't?! Not easy to get ... hope we do at some point though, we are solid everywhere and it could be the final bit of the puzzle for now!
The Fear
Interesting point MrZeus, also obviously we all know we need a 20 goal a season striker, but which team doesn't?! Not easy to get ... hope we do at some point though, we are solid everywhere and it could be the final bit of the puzzle for now!
The Fear
The point to non scoring strikers is they are cheap
ant1ant1
The point to non scoring strikers is they are cheap
ant1ant1
There is a tactical system that employs a "false nine", a player that creates space for others that is commonly used (see England with emile). This does work as long as your other players score goals. Ideally you want a player that can score and lie seep to link play (torres?) but name one that would join the mighty Villans? I can't think of any at the minute.
General Disarray
There is a tactical system that employs a "false nine", a player that creates space for others that is commonly used (see England with emile). This does work as long as your other players score goals. Ideally you want a player that can score and lie seep to link play (torres?) but name one that would join the mighty Villans? I can't think of any at the minute.
General Disarray
Lie seep? I clearly have typing impediment
General Disarray
Lie seep? I clearly have typing impediment
General Disarray
I would love to see the Fonz get more time on the pitch. I though after 70-80mins against West Ham Mart might have been a little more adventurous and gone for it.. Replaced Warnock with the Fonz and gone 3-4-3, or 3-5-2 with Gabby RW. Is it just me but when the Fonz is on the pitch I always think he'll score given 1 chance!
AVFC_WSM
I would love to see the Fonz get more time on the pitch. I though after 70-80mins against West Ham Mart might have been a little more adventurous and gone for it.. Replaced Warnock with the Fonz and gone 3-4-3, or 3-5-2 with Gabby RW. Is it just me but when the Fonz is on the pitch I always think he'll score given 1 chance!
AVFC_WSM
I agree General, ideally we want a player that can score
ant1ant1
I agree General, ideally we want a player that can score
ant1ant1
Feed the Fonz and will most likely bang 3 birds, then score! Seriously though, he doesn't look the fastest, though not slow and he obviously isn't the biggest, yet he does seem to know where the goal is, his finish against Hamburg last season was a typical finishers goal. I understand he needs time to develop still, but in games such as the West Ham one and even midweek against Blackburn, giving him 20 or so minutes would have been perfect. Other than that, who is really availabl to us right now?
Francobaresi13
Feed the Fonz and will most likely bang 3 birds, then score! Seriously though, he doesn't look the fastest, though not slow and he obviously isn't the biggest, yet he does seem to know where the goal is, his finish against Hamburg last season was a typical finishers goal. I understand he needs time to develop still, but in games such as the West Ham one and even midweek against Blackburn, giving him 20 or so minutes would have been perfect. Other than that, who is really availabl to us right now?
Francobaresi13
 

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