This is quite revealing, isn’t it? Whoscored.com takes the numbers from each game and makes a summary.
To be honest I’m fine with us being more direct but concerned that we lack the people to make this work. Our defence aren’t all that in possession so it makes every sense to not have them on the ball that much, but this means you have to focus on Holtby and while he had the ball much more than anyone else against WBA this only amounted to 44 passes, of which only 2/3 or so found Fulham players. I worry about players like this in more aggressive lineups. We only had the ball for a third of the game, too, which is partly because we went ahead and partly because we didn’t really seem to be overly worried about keeping it. Again, fine, this is a legit approach, especially coupled with what seems to be a huge emphasis on fitness, but are we really equipped to degenerate every game into a scrap, a fight? Just because the team has no points, it doesn’t mean you need to go all medieval.
Magath knows more about football than I do and will have had to make a lot of quick judgements. I have these 25 players. These ones might work in this system, these ones might be able to do this. On balance I think I have most chance if we play like this, and while I’d prefer different personnel, this is the way I think it can work. In truth there isn’t time for his methods to properly catch on so we’ll just have to see how astute he is at getting ideas embedded quickly. From an early look I’m not that convinced, but then I wouldn’t expect to be by now, and really we can’t just Magath until… well, probably November. By which time the game will be well and truly up.
I just don’t want to see us going down lobbing high balls at Hugo Rodallega.