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Liverpool vs Crystal Palace


Rory Fitzgerald

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BarnesPalace.PNG

 

 

Crystal Palace set-up

 

Their set up has its foundation on the double pivot in midfield of Kagisho Dikgacoi & Mile Jedinak . Dikgacoi is the player more likely to step forward out of midfield with the captain Jedinak more dispossed to covering behind. Whilst Holloway played an expansive attacking game with Blackpool, he has become more pragmatic with Crystal Palace. Two weeks ago he said that in 2008 he went to Liberty Stadium to watch a few games and that " .....Swansea changed how I see the whole of football ". However, he was asked if a solid defence was the best starting point for a successful campaign with Holloway replying tellingly that: " I think it is for this group. We actually got promoted by being hard to beat, hard to break down and then counter attacking ".

 

Palace have not generally played with 2 out-and-out wide players . Their favoured channel of attack is down the right. The right back has generally been between Joel Ward or Mariappa with Ward having the more attacking tendancies with Mariappa being more defensively minded.. On the right of midfield is Jason Puncheon who is on loan from Southampton. The stats show that Palace favour the right and even more so when playing away. If there is a break away, our left side is likely to be busier.

 

The only natural left sided player, Jerome Thomas, has only started one game with Holloway putting either Barry Bannon or Jose Campana on this side, both of whom are more suited to a central role. This is perhaps a conservative move to retain balance i.e. 3 central midfielders in midfield with 1 more attacking wide player and 2 strikers.

 

Holloway has largely started with 2 center-forwards in each game so far with Dwight Gayle and Chamakh starting most of the games together. Its not a natural 1-upfront-with-1-off but they will take it turns to alternate with Chamakh more likely to come deeper in order to allow Gayle use his pace against the last man.

 

AvePitchPosition.PNG

 

 

Style of play

 

Whilst Holloway admits that its a counter-attacking set up, his team do not immediately look to go from back-to-front straight away. He still retains a belief in his players to play football and, unfortunately for him, it has cost him on more than 1 occassion due to the quality of player in the team.Their captain, Mile Jedinak is a 6'2 defensive midfielder and considered one of their best players. Only 3 other midfielders have made more tackles than him this season with Lucas being one of those. He is the player most likely to get on the ball for Palace in deep areas but with a pass success rate this season of just 76%, its not ideal to be giving away 1 pass in every 4 on average. He is currently getting up to speed with the Premiership but largely at fault for 2 goals recently. However, it is reflective of Holloway's patience with trying to play some football and not just insisting on players taking the safest option and smashing it up the pitch with his captain trying to lead by example.

 

UtdChance.png

 

In the graphic above, Jedinak plays a stray pass despite being under little pressure. Young collects the ball and drives at goal with Dikgacoi fouling him and the referee contentiously awarding a penalty and sending off Dikgacoi.

 

 

SouthamptonGoal.png

 

 

In this screen shot, Clyne has attempted to play a one-two but the return ball is very poor and puts Jedinak in control of the situation. However, he is ponderous in getting to the ball and looks like he is weighing up what he will do with the ball when he controls it. But, Southampton work very hard to win the ball back and Clyne races for the poorly returned ball and gets there ahead of a Jedinak. Ultimately, the ball springs forward to a Southampton player and they get the ball into Osvaldo who scores the opener. Both situations are reflective of a team that look to play some football but can make quite a few unforced errors especially if put under pressure.

 

 

Palace's weaknesses

 

The in-game graphic below is a chance that Southampton created with poor tracking from Jedinak.

 

SchneiderlinChance.png

1st screenshot: Palace have fallen into a flat line of 4 in midfield with Gayle & Chamakh ahead. Nothing to see here except to note their shape.

 

2nd screenshot: Adam Lallana has darted off Moxey who had initally made the move to track him but has now stopped. At the same time, Schneiderlin has continued his run through Dikgacoi & Jedinak and is moving into the space in the left back area vacated by Lallana dragging Moxey out. In a midfield double pivot, one would move out and the other would fill the space. Dikgacoi is holding his position to face Lallana if he receives it. However, Jedinak has not read the danger of Schneiderlin's run. There is little excuse for this as the run and the space are in his line of sight.

 

3rd screenshot: The ball finds Schneiderlin after a flick on from Lambert and his header is cleared off the line. Note though how poorly he was tracked and the distance between him and Jedinak.

 

 

 

 

As there are only 5 pictures permitted in a post, the remainder of the of the preview is available here - www.theinsideright.com

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Biggest problem we have is who is replacing Lucas who is suspended. As we are at home, I would suggest possibly Kolo Toure in the role.

 

Ha!

 

Why not just play Henderson in central midfield?

Edited by Gerry
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Biggest problem we have is who is replacing Lucas who is suspended. As we are at home, I would suggest possibly Kolo Toure in the role.

 

So, as we're at home we play our best defender in midfield? How does that work?

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They've been using their left side most.

 

Henderson in midfield covering that side with someone outside of him playing either wingback or right mid

 

I've decided on Kelly there. That allows Henderson and Gerrard to get forward and also Toure, Agger or Sakho to make forward runs from the back, too.

 

----------Toure-----Agger / Skrtel----Sakho----------

--Kelly--------Henderson-----Gerrard------Enrique

-----------------------------Alberto--------------------------

-------------Sturridge----------------Suarez-----------

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Kelly in on the right and Henderson in the middle with Gerrard, sorted.

 

I would like to see ALberto there too Earl in the absence of Coutinho. I do like Moses, unsure of him in that position though.

 

I think this formation actually negates the desperate need for Lucas. With three CBs, one can step up when needed, I think Henderson's extra energy in there could be a big plus.

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It's pretty much where we find ourselves, unless Wisdon or Kelly are fit.

 

I'd rather we go to a back 4 and get either Aspas or Sterling in there. If that means Toure there then so be it.

 

More bodies in their half can help force mistakes and also provide more options in a game we are likely to dominate. I just think having Toure, Sakho and Skrtel looking on at us attacking is a waste.

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I'd rather we go to a back 4 and get either Aspas or Sterling in there. If that means Toure there then so be it.

 

More bodies in their half can help force mistakes and also provide more options in a game we are likely to dominate. I just think having Toure, Sakho and Skrtel looking on at us attacking is a waste.

 

Depends how we play it, I suppose - if the wing backs are parked in their half and we end up with an attacking five or even six, it can be a pretty offensive setup.

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I'd rather we go to a back 4 and get either Aspas or Sterling in there. If that means Toure there then so be it.

 

More bodies in their half can help force mistakes and also provide more options in a game we are likely to dominate. I just think having Toure, Sakho and Skrtel looking on at us attacking is a waste.

 

Its a fair point but in a 4-4-2 the centre halfs and Lucas would be sitting so you still have 3 not contributing much. Just dispense with the sitting midfielder

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I'd rather we go to a back 4 and get either Aspas or Sterling in there. If that means Toure there then so be it.

 

More bodies in their half can help force mistakes and also provide more options in a game we are likely to dominate. I just think having Toure, Sakho and Skrtel looking on at us attacking is a waste.

 

Different ways to approach that though. Allows Gerrard more time to get forward and he's a greater threat than Sterling. Also, runners from deep are more difficult to mark / defend against so if Toure, Henderson and Gerrard are available to get forward whilst Sturridge, Suarez and Moses / Alberto are in attack...it becomes a real handful.

 

I don't mind. If Sterling gets a start then he should be nailing it.

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