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Thread: Ex-Players

  1. #1
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    Ex-Players

    Greetings, I wanted to open this topic to ask you about the playing positions of some former club players, to start I will put some of the best known:

    *Dave Narey was primarily a central defender who could play as a defensive midfielder, occasionally as a right back although I think there were others who would cover before that position, correct?

    *Maurice Malpas was left back, I also think central.

    *Paul Hegarty would always be a central defender.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.M. View Post
    Greetings, I wanted to open this topic to ask you about the playing positions of some former club players, to start I will put some of the best known:

    *Dave Narey was primarily a central defender who could play as a defensive midfielder, occasionally as a right back although I think there were others who would cover before that position, correct?

    *Maurice Malpas was left back, I also think central.

    *Paul Hegarty would always be a central defender.
    Heggy actually signed as a striker but moved to centre half

  3. #3
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    * Dave Bowman would be a defensive midfielder and right midfielder, who covered the right-back on several occasions.

    * John Holt a utilitarian player but could he be considered more as a right back and central defender?

    * Jim McINally looks like he started out covering the entire left side primarily as a fullback and then converted a defensive midfielder.

  4. #4
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    * John Clark, originally a striker later converted to central defense and occasionally right back.
    * Dave Beaumont, central defender and defensive midfielder.
    * Gary McGinnis, defensive midfielder and central defender.

    it is right?

  5. #5
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    A couple of doubts, in case anyone remembers, Eamonn Bannon stood out during his career mainly as a central midfielder, playmaker, but some information also indicates him as a left winger, is this information correct? On the other hand, Kevin Gallacher played in his early years in Dundee Utd As a right winger, as a center forward he did more in England, would that be correct?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.M. View Post
    A couple of doubts, in case anyone remembers, Eamonn Bannon stood out during his career mainly as a central midfielder, playmaker, but some information also indicates him as a left winger, is this information correct? On the other hand, Kevin Gallacher played in his early years in Dundee Utd As a right winger, as a center forward he did more in England, would that be correct?
    I remember Eamonn Bannon mainly as a winger. “We’ve got Eamonn Eamonn Eamonn Eamonn Bannon on the wing” as the song went.

  7. #7
    At first Gallacher played wide right but he was often played through the middle too.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by USArab View Post
    I remember Eamonn Bannon mainly as a winger. “We’ve got Eamonn Eamonn Eamonn Eamonn Bannon on the wing” as the song went.
    Yip remember this chant being belted out in the shed while trying to avoid being trampled on during the sways. 😂

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arabknight View Post
    Yip remember this chant being belted out in the shed while trying to avoid being trampled on during the sways. 😂
    I was in the shed the night that Bannon scored his wonder goal against B.M.G. It was bedlam!

  10. #10
    Hi J. M.
    Regards positions of the likes of Dave Narey, Eamonn Bannon, etc. It would be oversimplification to label Bannon as a left-winger or really tie down accurately any of forwards you mention. The line-up in those days was very flexible, almost defying traditional positions. Eamonn Bannon operated primarily on the left, but mostly when United had the ball and were counter-attacking. He would also drift inwards to become almost what would today be called a No. 10. He was one of the best passers in that United team.
    At other times (when United didn’t have the ball) Eamonn would drop back quite a distance and join the defensive screen across the park. The counter-attacks often started with a Bannon to Milne or Sturrock out ball.
    When United were pressing forward against weaker teams, the front three became a front four, with Dodds, Sturrock, Bannon and Milne all high up the pitch.
    The back four were more likely to retain a rigid shape, although Richard Gough would often get forward to get on the end of longer diagonals. He was played as a right-back a lot of the time, but was uncommonly good in the air.
    Dave Narey often lined up in midfield (he played there most of the first half of the Championship-winning game at Dens in 1983) but was put back by McLean by about 10 yards after Dundee pulled a goal back.
    Jim McLean’s attacking formations depended on fluidity, and an exchange of positions. Paul Sturrock might be central, although might play as what they call a false nine these days. But he might also be out on the left. From his early 20s he developed a quite unique method of taking the ball on the outside of his foot, with his back to a defender, then spinning off on what looked like the wrong side from the direction he had initially been running in. It was very effective, and was clearly an in-game tactic United played to again and again. It opened up defences. Dodds looked like the centre-forward, but drifted left, Milne would be remembered as a winger, but even a cursory glance at any footage of his goals shows how often he is streaking through the middle of the park.
    They rotated a lot, but even then, the positions they took up often weren’t standard 4-3–3 or 4-4-2 positions, as was the fashion in the 80s.
    The entire plan was to create space, then exploit the space. Jim McLean spent a lot of time with Jock Stein and their teams evolved on similar lines, although 15 to 20 years apart and with the differences in playing staff not precisely the same. But if you look at the Celtic side of their two best years, 1967 and 1969, it would be difficult to put an exact label on the position Bobby Lennox was playing, or Chalmers, and Jimmy Johnstone almost had a free role - as Milne and Sturrock would be allowed to roam when the United side of 1983 were attacking. The players were different but the patterns were similar. McLean, it must be said, demanded more defensive cover from his players than Stein would expect from his forwards. When Kevin Gallagher came through he was (like Milne) mainly a right-sided attacker, but if you would like to look at Kevin’s highlights you would again see a lot of goals scored from a central position. But he was expected to get back and cover a man when United didn’t have the ball.
    And very little can be gleaned from the numbers on the classic United teams’ backs. Stark (No.2) wasn’t at right-back. Gough (No.4) was nothing like a right-half, Kirkwood (9) wasn’t centre-forward, and Dodds (11) wasn’t an outside-left. The old positions had long gone, of course, but even today it is often easy to glean which side of the pitch a player will be on if he has a 3, a 6, or an 11 on his back, or a 2, a 4 or a 7.
    The tactics of Jim McLean were complex, and (most importantly) ever changing. Two, three, four formation changes over the course of a game weren’t unusual, and there wasn’t a player allowed into the team who could only kick with one foot.
    The sobriquet often attached to him is “ahead of his time” . . . it isn’t hyperbole to say that McLean, and every one of his players, would be able to comfortably slot in to teams of today, 30 years on (with all the changes that have taken place in the game in those three decades). Gegenpressing, false-nines, diamonds, Christmas trees, anything. The only thing Jim didn’t do was give these things those fancy names. But ask any Roma player if he felt “gegenpressed” at Tannadice in 1984!

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