View Full Version : Going in the wrong direction ?

16-08-2014, 09:02 AM
Worrying signs that the club are going down a very bleak street with so many 'comfort blanket' signings.
Yes experience is useful but to sign so many almost players on contracts which will take them beyond SD's reign is disturbing. One year contracts maybe, any more troubling.
The club appear to be falling into the trap they did in Laws time of quantity over quality.
Fearful of their mistakes in signing youth over experience last time they have gone to the other extreme.
Youth has to be our way forward and identifying young talent our number one priority. It's a nice mixture of youth and experience that have got us here but we seem to have forgotten that in our rush for security. For me a big mistake.

16-08-2014, 09:04 AM
Agree we definitely need to get some younger 'assets' in if we are to build for the future. We also need experience in this squad to help us stay up.

I hope our remaining signings are in the younger bracket.

16-08-2014, 09:26 AM
The average age of Monday's starting line-up is likely to be 27-28.

This feels about right to me in terms of a good blend of experience and youth.

The average age of this summer's signings is in line with this at just over 28.

Hopefully there will be a couple of more signings before the transfer window closes and they will be younger.

I agree we also need to invest in youth as well as having several experienced players.

16-08-2014, 09:41 AM
Agree entirely with the o/p.

16-08-2014, 09:51 AM
ah, he's back.

16-08-2014, 09:58 AM
I wondered how long it would be before the Eddie Howe mantra of "we need quality not quantity" would be quoted again on here.

Has appeared several times as a headline in the sports pages of the Bournemouth Echo.

16-08-2014, 09:59 AM
Oh God... :zzz:

16-08-2014, 10:01 AM
Wrong direction? Championship to Premier League sounds right to me.

We have a stronger squad and a bloody good team! Bring it on!

16-08-2014, 10:11 AM
I have no idea why we bother might as well just give in now Burnley fans are never happy. underwhelmed by 2 internationals and a player who has spent 10 yr at this level are you for real. Who would you like to see us bring in a couple of bright young things for a few million that when the chips are down don't have the experience to handle it and we go down with a wimper.

Last time we went up we bought for the future instead of bringing in experience and it got us nowhere. Reid Ward and Taylor give us valuable experience of surviving in the premier league which we were short of last time.

Building for the future is all good and well when your lower down the leagues but were 2 days away from premier league football we needed experience and know how now not in 3 years time

16-08-2014, 10:14 AM
I thought we weren't going to have to put up with your nonsense for a while ablue. Are you officially back and here to stay now?

Imploding Turtle
16-08-2014, 10:14 AM
"The club appear to be falling into the trap they did in Laws time of quantity over quality."

Do you really think that of our last few managers that it was Brian Laws that was the one with the quantity over quality philosophy? Owen Coyle basically nailed his Panini sticker book to a plank, walked 20 paces away and fired a 12-gauge at it, then signed anyone he hit.

16-08-2014, 10:16 AM
"I have no idea why we bother might as well just give in now Burnley fans are never happy."

Please don't tar all of us with the same brush :p There are just as many positive fans on here as there are negative :)

16-08-2014, 10:22 AM
I'd say Palace are the ones going in the wrong direction, whereas we've just been promoted and going the right direction.

16-08-2014, 10:25 AM
Ah the poster with as much credibility in his promises (a year off with promotion) as his detailed opinions on BFC performances, based on viewing an average of two games per season.

Everyone is entitled to their opinions, its just ABC's count for diddly squat in my eyes.

16-08-2014, 10:46 AM
"I have no idea why we bother might as well just give up now Burnley fans are never happy"

When you have finished with the drama queenery and come down from that imaginary perch you have placed yourself on, above all other Clarets maybe you will find me a clubs forum (with a large active membership) where ALL the posters are positive and happy. Please report back with your findings.

Also its worth noting that even though you had very little to contribute on this topic the o/p obviously inspired you to post.

16-08-2014, 11:15 AM
Another negative thread even though a ball is still to be kicked.

Am I the only person giddy with excitement, counting down the minutes until Turf Moor rocks to the sound of "Come on Burnley!"

I believe our team will be fired up for a Chelsea scalp. Of course common sense says Chelsea dream team should give us a proper pasting. But who knows. Trippier is like a little terrier raring to go.

Manager & Board are clearly disappointed we have managed to bring a couple more signings in. Personally, I like the way we are not throwing millions around willy-nilly (as QPR).

Come on Guys & Gals, let's be positive...let's believe...let's be Fortress Burnley!


16-08-2014, 11:31 AM
"Am I the only person giddy with excitement, counting down the minutes until Turf Moor rocks to the sound of "Come on Burnley!""

You're definitely not! I can't wait :D

16-08-2014, 12:15 PM
If this is the wrong direction then I am sure the vast majority of teams below us would like to borrow our sat nav.

16-08-2014, 12:21 PM
Why does everyone seem to engage with ablue claret? HE DOESN'T GO TO GAMES!

His opinion is null and void! Irrelevant!


16-08-2014, 12:21 PM
"Also its worth noting that even though you had very little to contribute on this topic the o/p obviously inspired you to post."

EddieM and what exactly have you contributed to the topic with your post.

16-08-2014, 03:46 PM
I just wonder how football managers assess their opponents without being season ticket holders !!
If we were to return to the Championship we might now have several albatrosses round our neck.
It's very sad we haven't the scouts to bring in young players from Scotland Ireland and the lower divisions, it was a real chance to do so.

16-08-2014, 03:54 PM
Like Brian Easton you mean ? Or Luke O'Neill ?
Dyche has to be more pragmatic than that at this stage I think. It's been disheartening that our main targets have evidently slipped away but the market is insane and maybe Mark Lawrenson was onto something at lunchtime on Football Focus when he said "but who would want to sign for Burnley" on the basis that the type of player we are after will probably have safer options.
We have the basis of a solid team..the question is whether we can be pacey or creative enough to cause problems. Ings is absolutely crucial here, with Tripps and Kightly also key. The type of players we actually need is rare (and usually very expensive). Having said that a CH and CM are clearly still essential from somewhere, somehow (maybe loans).

16-08-2014, 04:26 PM
I've just seen this thread but I have to say yes, you are ABC, you came back. The club, on the other hand, are, IMO, make progress in the right direction.

16-08-2014, 04:42 PM
Those who are should just keep on going!

2 days till a full house on tv under the lights against Chelsea in the Prem is what I call the right direction - some people would moan if they won the lottery cos it's ruined their life!


16-08-2014, 04:43 PM
Abc, please stick to that promise you made and go away.

We get promoted ,spend carefully , refuse to overspend on players who are unproven in the top flight like Deeney and still this div has a whinge.

16-08-2014, 08:55 PM
I wouldn't go as far as say we're going in the wrong direction but that we've been blown off course and at times possibly shot ourselves in the foot.

I stand to be corrected especially if we do end up with a few more signings - hopefully Dawson, Lansbury and/or the Wigan midfielder who's eludes me at the moment.

However, had the retainer issue not occured and had the club given over the Cricket Field stand to home fans and had we got Bryson, Lansbury, Dawson and/or Deeney on board - or at least two of them, then I think most fans would be more than happy and looking forward to the season much more than possibly they are at present.

The key point may be what lessons might the club have learnt or need to address in the future?

For me one is that we must, if are we to be serious about remaining in the premiership, invest in a scouting system that extends beyond the shores of this country. If we limit ourselves to attempting to bring in young, good championship players then we're

17-08-2014, 05:56 AM
We definitely need a couple more signings who are young and promising. Dyche will be well aware of the deficiencies, the board just need to swallow their pride and cough up because no decent domestic player will be cheap this transfer window.

17-08-2014, 06:03 AM
Youth alone won't help keep us up. I'm glad we have brought in some older more experienced heads. We just need a good central midfielder and centre half now.

17-08-2014, 06:04 AM
We have a MUCH better squad than we did this time in 2009.

17-08-2014, 07:41 AM
"For me one is that we must, if are we to be serious about remaining in the premiership, invest in a scouting system that extends beyond the shores of this country".

How many millions would that cost to start and maintain - and where do you scout?

Africa, South America, Europe, Asia?

You can't have an overseas scouting system with our revenue on the scale some people want.

17-08-2014, 07:59 AM
Almost exactly the same post by ablue for the last several years. Just the managers initials are different.
Always talking about after the current manager as left. Is next line will be hoping the board already have Dyche's replacement lined up.

Ablue can't you just enjoy the moment. Our first game of the season is against Chelsea, not Charlton. So we must have done something right over the last few years of you saying everything from squad size, signings and the quality of backroom staff are all wrong. We did get promoted, didn't we?

17-08-2014, 08:12 AM
Ablue, you are just that, blue; down, depressed, miserable. In fact, you represent everything that's bad about this message board. You were a doom monger last season and the season before and you're back at it again.

Does anyone expect us to beat Chelsea tomorrow ? It will be brilliant if we do but I won't get hung up about it if we don't. Whether we go down again or become a yo-yo club I don't know but, whatever happens, I will try and look on the bright side and enjoy the ride of the EPL. Do I agree with the board on everything? No, but nor do I know what goes on behind the scenes and in bidding and contract negotiations.

I can only suggest you either read DaveManu's posts or go and see your GP for anti-depressants. :/

17-08-2014, 08:19 AM
I am enjoying the moment Rammy.
You might just have noticed we used a much smaller squad last year, and that in part was the reason for our success, along with an excellent manager and some very good players.
Rather than bulk up the squad with experienced players I'd have like to have seen us signing on young talent with a future, it has to be the way forward for us. Looking at our squad now other than Trippier Ings and to a lesser extent Arfield and Wallace on his day it lacks that raw skill to unlock defences.
That's not to say I think all is lost, far from it. The team we had last year was a together bunch who if they can get a good start could suprise many.

My concern is that so many players have signed on for long deals far beyond the likely expiry date of SD. This might have been the time to sign older players on short contracts and invest longer term in young players from the lower divisions.
Understandably the Board are looking in two directions at once, and in doing so are ma

17-08-2014, 08:29 AM
"As this really is my last post until the end of the season I can only wish the team and SD well."


17-08-2014, 08:37 AM
... "Ablue, you are just that, blue; down, depressed, miserable".

You have to remember that despite his username Ablue is very definitely NOT a Claret.

His posts are usually negative and he always talks in the third person when writing. He talks about "the Club" and "they" rather than "we" and "us".

He never goes to games and when we played his real love Yeovil he sat with the home fans and strongly criticised us after the game.

Therefore you have to read his posts as you would an outsider. They are always confrontational, thought-provoking and attention seeking and when they start to slip down the board he chips in with more 'suggestions'.

However he is good to have in a forum because he generates debate, but you should treat him as an outsider looking in, rather than a someone who cares about the Club.

17-08-2014, 08:45 AM
Some serious repression here... Guys, just ask ablueclaret to go for a few drinks and see where it goes from there...

17-08-2014, 08:49 AM
New to the board Bestbloke or have you read Ablue's posts over the years?

17-08-2014, 09:13 AM
ABC, Burnley aren't going in the wrong direction. They're going in the right direction by sticking to their principles.

Unlike some people. >:(

17-08-2014, 09:31 AM
I won't be going in the wrong direction tomorrow afternoon, when I turn left out of my driveway and drive 50 miles to see my team playing premiership football, under a manager who will do more than keep us up!

17-08-2014, 09:40 AM
This msg board continues to go in the wrong direction.

You have expert pundits undermining Dyche with their superior knowledge, you have the king of condescension not allowing the use of in Dyche we trust or Scott Arfield and then there those who just love moaning and complaining (you know those who didn't post last season). Even a free ticket wouldn't lure them away from their keyboard.

Anyway, take with a pinch of salt the amount of drivel written on here, it is not a fair reflection of what you hear on match day. Enjoy the PL ride, apparently the best league in the world.

17-08-2014, 09:49 AM
ABC gets the usual reaction, but as usual amongst all the overblown stuff, there's the kernel of good point in his post.

Wrong direction might be overstating it, but we've certainly spent too much of the summer taking de-tours, or even going down cul-de-sacs.

The early work in bringing in Reid, Taylor, Gilks and Sordell in particular looked good, Jutkewitz seemed a decent enough signng, but since then its fizzled out badly. We haven't brought in the proper signings we needed down the spine of the team and we're getting to the point where its a race against time. The other problem we'v got is that potential signings are now looking at us and wondering whether we're a realistic bet for survival, because for all that every player wants to play in the Premier League, and one-off season in a struggling side isn't the base for a long premier league career that most players - say Lansbury - are looking for. If you can't sell players cash, and you can't sell them a modest amount of ambition,

17-08-2014, 09:59 AM
Post 18 ;) - view external link (boards.footymad.net/forum.php?tno=104&fid=297&sty=2&act=1&mid=2111680402)

17-08-2014, 10:29 AM
Spice, did you know Burnley are 20th most attractive proposition in the PL?

Did you know we will be the 20th best supported team in the PL?

Did you know there are bigger budgets in the Championship?

In ClaretSpice we trust.

Imploding Turtle
17-08-2014, 10:33 AM
"Another negative thread even though a ball is still to be kicked."

I remember last July when we looked certain to be in a relegation battle. Apparently.

17-08-2014, 10:35 AM
No disputing that but not really relevant to Spices points.

17-08-2014, 10:40 AM
Who were you posting as then, Imploding Turtle?

17-08-2014, 10:42 AM
I have no doubt that Dyche and others at the club have worked tirelessly to get the right transfer deals completed. It's obviously been a challenge, which some people on here fail to appreciate because of their lack of understanding.

17-08-2014, 10:43 AM
Grogmir, Thats exceptional evidence if ever it was needed. :/

17-08-2014, 11:05 AM
All true Feej, none relevant to my points.

We're weaker in some positions this season - most obviously out wide - than we were last season. That's not a great position to be in.

No-one's expecting us to start paying players 30k a week, or pay out 10 million transfer fees. We could and should have done better than we have though. Whatever the reasons, we're threadbare in key positions. Analyse it however you like, no club with a turnover in excess of 80 million this season, and a minimum of about 45 million next season, should be threadbare,.

17-08-2014, 11:09 AM
'We could and should have done better than we have though'

It might be better if you reserve such judgement until the transfer window closes.

17-08-2014, 11:13 AM
'no club with a turnover in excess of 80 million this season...'

80m? That probably rules our club out then.

...given the majority of PL clubs will have revenue below 80m and Burnley is likely to be lowest.

17-08-2014, 11:31 AM
We won't be far away from that this season.

17-08-2014, 11:34 AM
"...given the majority of PL clubs will have revenue below 80m and Burnley is likely to be lowest."

Don't let facts get in the way of your point, we may have the lowest turnover in the prem but you get 63m for finishing bottom plus we will set a record with our usual revenue being more than 10m this season so not far off 80M.

17-08-2014, 11:34 AM
'We won't be far away from that this season'

15 - 20m - small beer for Burnley!

17-08-2014, 11:37 AM
'Don't let facts get in the way of your point'

Which part of my post wasn't factual? It is fact we won't have revenue of 80m. Whilst we will earn a tremendous sum but it will be considerably less - getting up to a figure of 20m less.

17-08-2014, 11:39 AM
Spice, I don't actually read your posts, I was just asking a few questions.

As for analysis, I will leave that for you to do with your superior knowledge. I am far too busy to analyse it.

Me and Walshaw claret run a successful vets team and we need a Lee Darnborough. How are you fixed? We need a central midfielder who is the wrong side of 30. Ideally played at step 7 or higher. He must be prepared for a lot banter, like a pint or 2 and pay his subs on time. We have only got one of our targets over the line so far, in fact he's not signed on yet as he's gone to Scarborough on holiday.

17-08-2014, 11:41 AM
what part of 63m for finishing bottom do you not understand ? Plus sponsorship and matchday sales it will be a minimum of 75m and over 80m if we finish fourth bottom.

17-08-2014, 11:45 AM
Swansea and qpr have smaller grounds than us so we won't be the worst supported.

17-08-2014, 11:48 AM
I was under the impression our total revenue would be just over 60m. If I'm wrong on that then fine, but it doesn't alter the fact Dyche has been working tremendously hard in the market and that the transfer window is still open, which some people are failing to appreciate.

17-08-2014, 11:49 AM
I think you are wrong Taio, with respect. I expect every club in the PL to make 80 million this season. If we're short of that, we won't be short by very much at all and certainly not by 15-20 million.

Cardiff made the lowest TV revenue in the league last season at 62.1 million. That is 30 million more than we made last time we were in the PL, on a turnover of 45 million (non-TV revenue from memory ran in the region of 12-13 million from memory that season, and usually runs at something like 8 million a year). Its far from unrealistic to expect that, with the pricing structure adopted, the decision to maximise travelling support to turf moor, the explosion in overseas advertising revenues etc., that we might add something like 15 million + to the TV rights figure (roughly 25% up on 2009/10) and therefore end up very, very close to 80 million, and there's a decent chance of exceeding it.

17-08-2014, 11:58 AM
last times 45m included free season tickets aswell. As spice says 63m for finishing bottom plus at least another 15m on top.

17-08-2014, 11:58 AM
Posted 17 Aug 2014 12:45
re: Going in the wrong direction ?
Swansea and qpr have smaller grounds than us so we won't be the worst supported.

Moaningbob, that's not necessarily true, think about it. If you're stuck I'll help you out.

17-08-2014, 11:58 AM
I just love the fact that even though we've not kicked a ball in anger yet. Yet again we have people who are certain our transfers in have "weakened" the squad.
Would these possibly be the same type of people who said the same last year. "Our transfers dealings have been underwhelming" About the likes of Arfield & Jones. That went terribly wrong didn't it?

Why don't you just give Sean Dyche, the current squad, and the new signings a chance before writing them off? You never know, you might just be surprised.

Is really to much to ask you to "support" the players wearing the claret & blue of Burnley Football Club? Rather than rubbishing them at every opportunity. UTC.

17-08-2014, 12:00 PM
Ignore Feej, Morninbob. He or she is a troll.

17-08-2014, 12:06 PM
More of a wum than a troll spice, you bite every time.

I look forward to your reply to Rammy's post.

17-08-2014, 12:08 PM
rammy - I assure you that come Monday night, I'll be as positive and full of support for the team as anyone. This though is a messageboard for expressing opinions.

I'm not rubbishing any of our players. They've all got a role to play. However, in wide areas, we've let two go players who contributed to our success last season - Stan and Keef - and the only arguably replacement for them is Taylor, so we're shorter on genuinely forward thinking creative players who can influence the game, especially from the bench, than we were last season.

That weakens us, which is a crazy position to be in going into the kick off, without any disrespect to anyone in our squad.

17-08-2014, 12:14 PM
'Swansea and qpr have smaller grounds than us so we won't be the worst supported'

Factually correct, though Swansea have planning permission to increase capacity to 33k and have a season ticket waiting list of 8k.

17-08-2014, 12:16 PM
I haven't read all of this in full but I'm pretty sure I saw the word 'threadbare' further up.

I would say our strongest starting 11 (with the addition of Jutkeiwicz and Taylor) is very much like-for-like last season's extremely fit, energetic, disciplined and well organised record breaking team.

Our bench tomorrow night will read something like: Gilkes, Reid, Ward, Kightly, Wallace, Barnes, Sordell.

In addition it's not a question of players not wanting to come to us. Dawson and Lansbury both do. They are difficult deals because they are good players and their respective clubs don't necessarily want to lose them. They are SD's prime targets who are capable improving the starting line-up. There's no point switching our attention elsewhere if alternatives are not of the same quality or better than what we've already got.

In terms of tactics,strategy and vision our current manager far exceeds either of the two we had in charge in our last PL season.

We are set-up to give ourselves

17-08-2014, 12:19 PM
Keef offered very little in his time here. In fact he was a waste of a signing and wages. As he was available on on free and is now in league one reflects that.

17-08-2014, 12:24 PM
dougcollins answered for me, factually correct so not struggling with anything, run along troll

17-08-2014, 12:28 PM
Claretspice's point still stands. It's reflected in the possibility of Ross Wallace being on the bench tomorrow. If, finally, we have a successful window he won't be anywhere near it.

17-08-2014, 12:32 PM
skipton, regardless of who else we sign I strongly suspect it won't meet your expectations. Your negativity on this board over the summer has been phenomenal. 'Support' the club could do without.

17-08-2014, 12:40 PM
Bob, I thought I'd have to spell it out for you.

If Swansea City or QPR fill their ground every home game and Burnley only get 15k when there are smaller away followings we will have the lowest support.

Run along troll...I'm embarrassed for you. Go and find something else to moan about.

17-08-2014, 12:56 PM
the same applies to them 2 clubs aswell idiot, QPR only got 17603 on yesterday.

17-08-2014, 01:14 PM
Potential Turnover has been discussed many times on here over the summer. Spice is right in that 78m would be a realistic figure simply for finishing 20th and for every place above that there is an additional 1.6m in place money. Predicting 15th or 16th will see us easily exceed 80m.

In terms of worst case scenario for next season I think Spice is a little optimistic with his minimum 45m. Of course there will be the first tranche of parachute payments of 23m but it's highly unlikely the Club would generate a further 22m in Other Revenue back in the Championship.

Looking on the bright side a second season in the PL will open lots of new doors particularly with the wage structure. This summer there have been any number of one off costs -PL ground requirements, Loan repayments, promotion bonuses etc so that next time round more funds should be available to fund a Wage budget in excess of 30m.

Then we might even be able to afford Jack Cork. :)

The Bedlington Terrier
17-08-2014, 06:30 PM
I just want abc to honour his promise! End of!

17-08-2014, 06:36 PM
Is this thread full of people who study at the footy Uni at Burnley? People seem to know a lot about how to run a football club...

17-08-2014, 07:28 PM
Opinions are all well and good but unfortunately none of us have the facts. I suspect that if we chose to throw money at signings we could have got some big ones, but with agents fees, loan fees, signing on fees, wages, insurance plus the big transfer fee it would have burst Dyche's budget. The market has gone mad. I suspect Dyche has a budget for the year and is being very careful to manage it.

Lots of sides have spent lots of money who are expected to be bottom half - how many won this weekend? Exactly.

By the way, with regard to wingers if Ward and Taylor with their several hundred Premier League appearances are not an upgrade on Stan and Keith, I don't know who are.

18-08-2014, 11:02 AM
"Why does everyone seem to engage with ablue claret? HE DOESN'T GO TO GAMES!

His opinion is null and void! Irrelevant!


As well as being full of 5hit,it appears they are also full of empty promises.I was looking forward to a year (at least) away from this planks utterances.(see the comments directly after Birmingham away last season where it appeared ABC was almost willing us to implode so they could spout their garbage for reference purposes!)

18-08-2014, 11:17 AM
"By the way, with regard to wingers if Ward and Taylor with their several hundred Premier League appearances are not an upgrade on Stan and Keith, I don't know who are."

Taylor I can run with to an extent, although my understanding is he's generally played further back than either Stan or Treacy.

But seriously, comparing a player who is primarily a full back but can play further forwards in essentially a blocking role - i.e. Ward, who I think is in himself a decent addition to the squad by the way) with two flighty but genuinely creative options is like comparing apples and oranges.

I'm all for people accentuating the positives of this summer, but anyone suggesting we've lost two creative players and replaced them with two equally creative forces is being disingenuous in my view.

And that's before you address the question of we're actually weaker overall in central midfield given that Taylor can't play there and wide at the same time, and Reid was essentially replaced Edgar in th

18-08-2014, 11:30 AM
But spice Keef was hardly "creative" last season was he...its an absolute guarantee that Taylor will give us more, much more, and I'm pretty certain Ward will too if he plays. He could hardly give us less. Stan provided some good moments, though I did spit my tea when I read that Eddie said at the weekend that he possesses everything a modern wide player needs. In truth he was a fringe player and his lack if defensive ability would make it impossible for us to give him game time this season.
So we've lost a good impact sub (Stan) and a (sorry) inconsequential waster (Keef) and gained the experience and expected solidity of Taylor and Ward. We also have Sordell as an extra body up front plus Reid...both Edgar and Stock manifestly not up to PL football so effectively irrelevsnt.I'd say we are stronger...albeit not by enough yet !

18-08-2014, 11:48 AM
The fact Stanislas, Treacy and Stock may not have been good enough is kind of besides the point

That is exactly the point - you have admitted that they were not good enough for a Championship side and yet for some reason you are bemoaning the fact that we haven't adequately replaced them??

18-08-2014, 11:51 AM
Ward as I mentioned on a previous thread can play anywhere down the left,but pops up all over the place if required.I feel he is a decent signing and good cover for a plethora positions should it be required

18-08-2014, 12:35 PM
St Albans - I'd say Keef and Stan contributed as much, perhaps more, than Wallace did last season (yep, including in the period after Wallace came back from injury). And tonight, if Dyche has reason to look around for a sub, he'll be looking primarily at Kightly and Wallace. For all that Kightly might have started last season - and I'd concede that Taylor is an improvement on paper - last season he'd have been able to look at Wallace, Keef and Stan.

Whilst neither Keef nor Stan would have been players I'd have wanted to hang my hat on this season, they were both decent options to have, just as Kightly and Wallace were. The fact remains we have less viable options in those areas, and so less depth, than we did last season.

The same goes for the centre of midfield. That the starting eleven is marginally stronger is accepted, but this started by me describing our midfield options as 'threadbare'. The almost total lack of creative options on the bench is to me the biggest indictment of