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Who would you buy?

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Richard88

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Van Den Berg 2018/2019

AGETAKINTFOUCLRDBPBLKKEYAVP%LNG
VAN DEN BERGZWOLLE17.01.30.80.32.70.30.30.236.288.42.3

He comes out slightly behind so for the purposes of the exercise I performed (which was aimed at bringing in a CB for the first team) I would not have highlighted him based on last season. However, as a 17 year old you can see the stats there that drew us to him for the U23 squad - low foul count, hard to dribble past and high pass completion.
Great job compiling the stats, very interesting. Thank you!
 

spizfromoz

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2021 Africa Cup of Nations will be in January next year, so we'll miss out on Mo, Mane and Keita for many weeks. So, perhaps we can sell Mo Salah, use the money to buy Jadon Sancho and Timo Werner to cover Mane. Perhaps Keita will be injured in December and recovered in time not be considered by Guinea. Mo Salah feels like the easiest to replace out of our front three.
 

SithBaare

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2021 Africa Cup of Nations will be in January next year, so we'll miss out on Mo, Mane and Keita for many weeks. So, perhaps we can sell Mo Salah, use the money to buy Jadon Sancho and Timo Werner to cover Mane. Perhaps Keita will be injured in December and recovered in time not be considered by Guinea. Mo Salah feels like the easiest to replace out of our front three.
Maybe Mo takes international retirement
 

Anfield rd Dreamer

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Mo Salah feels like the easiest to replace out of our front three.
Yep so easy to replace someone able to set scoring records the likes of Ronaldo, Henry and Shearer couldn't match (and he did it almost without any penalties). Liverpool's top scorer per game in the premier league era. From the wing. Taking very few free kicks and penalties. So easy to replace such a player. I know Mane has worked his way up to fantastic form and Salah has had spotty form this season (not helped by playing with an ankle injury) but big picture Salah has more goals and assists for us than Mane and been here one less season. Firmino is a wonderful character with a brilliant playing style that unlocks the other two, hes a very rare player but think he'd be the easiest to change or replace. We've got three truly exceptional players who would all be near impossible to replace but I'm getting really worried about this seeming lack of appreciation of just how phenomenally special a player we have on our hands with Salah that seems to be spreading through the fan base these days.
 

waldaz

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Does anyone actually think the AFCON will significantly affect our business in the summer? I don't.
I don't know, but I read somewhere (maybe it was Maddock?) that we were looking at another attacking option in the summer, so this could be another incentive. That news means losing our two biggest guns simultaneously for a reasonably long period, and that's before counting possible injuries.
 

Anfield rd Dreamer

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I don't know, but I read somewhere (maybe it was Maddock?) that we were looking at another attacking option in the summer, so this could be another incentive. That news means losing our two biggest guns simultaneously for a reasonably long period, and that's before counting possible injuries.
And some of us think we need to improve the quality of the other options behind Salah and Mane before this. The clubs success is currently resting fully on them two not picking up any major injuries.
 

Noo Noo

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Does anyone actually think the AFCON will significantly affect our business in the summer? I don't.
Tough call. Origi is clearly behind in the pecking order and Shaqiri has simply been injured too often to make any kind of statement whatsoever. Minimano is an interesting option that we now have and there is of course Brewster and we will get another look at Wilson this Summer.

The numbers are there already, The question is whether Klopp thinks they can fill the void. My money would be yes on Shaqiri and Minimano at the moment but they need more game time to really be assesses properly.
 

Sweeting

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Does anyone actually think the AFCON will significantly affect our business in the summer? I don't.
I think we are likely looking to move Shaqiri on and replace him anyway - so that won't change anything in that regard.

I also picture everyone freaking out about not having Salah, Mane and Keita whilst we go and win every game.
 

redfanman

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Tough call. Origi is clearly behind in the pecking order and Shaqiri has simply been injured too often to make any kind of statement whatsoever. Minimano is an interesting option that we now have and there is of course Brewster and we will get another look at Wilson this Summer.

The numbers are there already, The question is whether Klopp thinks they can fill the void. My money would be yes on Shaqiri and Minimano at the moment but they need more game time to really be assesses properly.
Even when fit Shaqiri is rarely asked to play, so i dont think injuries are the issue. I dont see us keeping Wilson either. He scores goals but still doesnt appear to have enough to his game to warrant a place in our first team ssquad.
 

norwegian wood

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Does anyone actually think the AFCON will significantly affect our business in the summer? I don't.
Me neither. I don't think they'll make such short term considerations, and change their plans for incoming business because of a few weeks. But I do think it could possibly affect some planned outgoing loans.
 

LondonRich

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Van Den Berg 2018/2019

AGETAKINTFOUCLRDBPBLKKEYAVP%LNG
VAN DEN BERGZWOLLE17.01.30.80.32.70.30.30.236.288.42.3

He comes out slightly behind so for the purposes of the exercise I performed (which was aimed at bringing in a CB for the first team) I would not have highlighted him based on last season. However, as a 17 year old you can see the stats there that drew us to him for the U23 squad - low foul count, hard to dribble past and high pass completion.
I have a completely undefined method I use to assess CBs. The best always seem to be fluid, effortless in the way they move. You think VVD, Gomez, Hansen, Lawrenson, Rio Ferdinand, Keown etc. They seem unhurried and smooth.

When I look at Sepp he seems jerky and less fluid. Traore was the same! So I worry about him. Maybe its about anticipation or just athleticism.

Anyone else have a view?

and on CBs - pace is the key too these days. What stats do we have on that?
 

Nikola

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Does anyone actually think the AFCON will significantly affect our business in the summer? I don't.
Neither do I - like @Sweeting, I think there will be an upgrade on Shaqiri this summer, Elliott and Jones will get more playing time, which will hopefully be able to get Liverpool through most games, fitness and fixture list permitting. That said, if Liverpool happen to face a fixture list like the one they are halfway through at this moment (starting with Leicester away, ending with Wolves away) during that period, I won't be feeling optimistic at all. Then again, that's my default setting.
 

norwegian wood

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I have a completely undefined method I use to assess CBs. The best always seem to be fluid, effortless in the way they move. You think VVD, Gomez, Hansen, Lawrenson, Rio Ferdinand, Keown etc. They seem unhurried and smooth.

When I look at Sepp he seems jerky and less fluid. Traore was the same! So I worry about him. Maybe its about anticipation or just athleticism.

Anyone else have a view?

and on CBs - pace is the key too these days. What stats do we have on that?
With Sepp I think it's about growing into his own body, as they say. He's a 17-18 year old kid, so I think it's difficult to say what he'll be like in 3-5 years. Of course, there are limits to how much you can change in terms of agilty and coordination, but I imagine a kid as tall as he is will experience some changes the next years which affects how he moves on the pitch.
 

Sweeting

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I have a completely undefined method I use to assess CBs. The best always seem to be fluid, effortless in the way they move. You think VVD, Gomez, Hansen, Lawrenson, Rio Ferdinand, Keown etc. They seem unhurried and smooth.

When I look at Sepp he seems jerky and less fluid. Traore was the same! So I worry about him. Maybe its about anticipation or just athleticism.

Anyone else have a view?

and on CBs - pace is the key too these days. What stats do we have on that?
I agree with you. I hate the overly aggressive style of defending that you see in Lovren, Skrtel, Vidic etc. Thise defenders that need to show you they are defending. They are irratic and clumsy. Much like a goalkeeper who is always making world class saves - the question should be why does he need to make those saves? A defender who is always making last ditch tackles should be questioned why they were doing it in the first place.

The best defenders won't even be noticed most of the time. Van Dijk can be hugely impressive defending because of his size, power and pace yet he only really gets to show this off once every few games or so (usually because an attack has broken down and a quick counter attack is on) and the rest of the time he is totally controlling the opposition's attack without ever coming near the ball.

It was for that reason I chose my focus as interceptions, not tackles, as in my mind a high interception total, combined with low total fouls, can potentially show a level of situational awareness that is akin to a "smooth" defender. This is far from perfect and is only a theory but most of the defenders highlighted by the research I believe fit the composed style.

With regards to pace I have not seen any reliable statistics that are publicly available for things like top speed or average total sprints which would have given some indication of that. As a very unreliable measure I would use the "Dribbled Past" statistic for this (in CBs only, as other positions are too influenced by the situation of the take on attempt). As the last line of defence a CB being taken on in a dribble will, 99% of the time, have to win the challenge - so being successfully taken on will either indicate that they were beaten by skill or pace. Pure trickery to beat a man is a rare thing in the PL - particularly against CBs - and so the rationale is most attempts will be "knock and run" style. Therefore if a defender is beaten in a "knock and run" contest then that indicates they do not have the pace to keep up.

As I've already clarified this is a very raw measure to try and discern pace from but I think as a general overview it could work.

The other way to read it would be if the "Blocks" and "Dribbled Past" are both unusually high then this could indicate that the defender is slow but capable of good positioning when on the back foot (by not chasing the quicker man, to make a tackle, but recovering to a safe position in which to block the shot).
 

Noo Noo

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Even when fit Shaqiri is rarely asked to play, so i dont think injuries are the issue. I dont see us keeping Wilson either. He scores goals but still doesnt appear to have enough to his game to warrant a place in our first team ssquad.
I like Shaqiri, I think he has something to offer us myself and teh injuries have simply hampered that integration. Remember Klopp never rushes into introducing a player.

I'd also completely forgotten about Elliot.

My gut feeling is that there will be some level of fresh blood. I just don't know whether that's Minimano or others already at the club
 

LondonRich

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I agree with you. I hate the overly aggressive style of defending that you see in Lovren, Skrtel, Vidic etc. Thise defenders that need to show you they are defending. They are irratic and clumsy. Much like a goalkeeper who is always making world class saves - the question should be why does he need to make those saves? A defender who is always making last ditch tackles should be questioned why they were doing it in the first place.

The best defenders won't even be noticed most of the time. Van Dijk can be hugely impressive defending because of his size, power and pace yet he only really gets to show this off once every few games or so (usually because an attack has broken down and a quick counter attack is on) and the rest of the time he is totally controlling the opposition's attack without ever coming near the ball.

It was for that reason I chose my focus as interceptions, not tackles, as in my mind a high interception total, combined with low total fouls, can potentially show a level of situational awareness that is akin to a "smooth" defender. This is far from perfect and is only a theory but most of the defenders highlighted by the research I believe fit the composed style.

With regards to pace I have not seen any reliable statistics that are publicly available for things like top speed or average total sprints which would have given some indication of that. As a very unreliable measure I would use the "Dribbled Past" statistic for this (in CBs only, as other positions are too influenced by the situation of the take on attempt). As the last line of defence a CB being taken on in a dribble will, 99% of the time, have to win the challenge - so being successfully taken on will either indicate that they were beaten by skill or pace. Pure trickery to beat a man is a rare thing in the PL - particularly against CBs - and so the rationale is most attempts will be "knock and run" style. Therefore if a defender is beaten in a "knock and run" contest then that indicates they do not have the pace to keep up.

As I've already clarified this is a very raw measure to try and discern pace from but I think as a general overview it could work.

The other way to read it would be if the "Blocks" and "Dribbled Past" are both unusually high then this could indicate that the defender is slow but capable of good positioning when on the back foot (by not chasing the quicker man, to make a tackle, but recovering to a safe position in which to block the shot).
Great stuff. I was not suggesting your analysis was flawed - far from it. I was suggesting that sometimes "eye" needed to be applied. I like your analysis - it points to a modern defender. Where would Harry Mcguire fit? I have him as old school?
 

redfanman

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I like Shaqiri, I think he has something to offer us myself and teh injuries have simply hampered that integration. Remember Klopp never rushes into introducing a player.

I'd also completely forgotten about Elliot.

My gut feeling is that there will be some level of fresh blood. I just don't know whether that's Minimano or others already at the club
Shaqiri has been here for 18 months. He was playing more frequently in the first 6 months after arriving than he has in the last 12. Shaqiri's lack of game time has little to do with Klopp taking his time to introduce him.
 

Richard88

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I have a completely undefined method I use to assess CBs. The best always seem to be fluid, effortless in the way they move. You think VVD, Gomez, Hansen, Lawrenson, Rio Ferdinand, Keown etc. They seem unhurried and smooth.

When I look at Sepp he seems jerky and less fluid. Traore was the same! So I worry about him. Maybe its about anticipation or just athleticism.

Anyone else have a view?

and on CBs - pace is the key too these days. What stats do we have on that?
I agree about Van den Berg. In the first half performance against Villa in the league cup he didn't look very assertive at all, quite jerky and indecisive. By contrast Hoever has that unhurried and smooth feature you mentioned.
 

LondonRich

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I agree about Van den Berg. In the first half performance against Villa in the league cup he didn't look very assertive at all, quite jerky and indecisive. By contrast Hoever has that unhurried and smooth feature you mentioned.
You are right on Hoever. For CB does he have the stature though?

Oh and pleased someone agrees with my theory :)
 

Sweeting

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Great stuff. I was not suggesting your analysis was flawed - far from it. I was suggesting that sometimes "eye" needed to be applied. I like your analysis - it points to a modern defender. Where would Harry Mcguire fit? I have him as old school?
Maguire does fit but only just. He intercepts the ball often - 1.7p/g - but he also makes quite a high proportion of fouls - 0.8p/g which indicates he can be quite clumsy (but not horrendously so). Across his whole career he has been fairly high on the foul count, indicating a trend.

19/20: 0.8
18/19: 0.6
17/18: 0.9
16/17: 0.8
15/16: 0.8
14/15: 1.3

I think that roughly matches up with what we would expect from the eye test on him. He can be a bit clumsy and try too hard to get to the ball (which is why he gets rolled fairly often - career average of 0.6 dribbled past before this came down to 0.2 in his 2nd season at Leicester). However he clearly isn't the classic brainless thug of a CB, he has elements of that in his game but can be more restrained in the right circumstances - and his passing has greatly improved (86.6% with 0.6 key passes and 4.4 long balls - compared to his first PL season with Hull... 76.2% with 0.4 key passes and 3.5 long balls).
 

LondonRich

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Maguire does fit but only just. He intercepts the ball often - 1.7p/g - but he also makes quite a high proportion of fouls - 0.8p/g which indicates he can be quite clumsy (but not horrendously so). Across his whole career he has been fairly high on the foul count, indicating a trend.

19/20: 0.8
18/19: 0.6
17/18: 0.9
16/17: 0.8
15/16: 0.8
14/15: 1.3

I think that roughly matches up with what we would expect from the eye test on him. He can be a bit clumsy and try too hard to get to the ball (which is why he gets rolled fairly often - career average of 0.6 dribbled past before this came down to 0.2 in his 2nd season at Leicester). However he clearly isn't the classic brainless thug of a CB, he has elements of that in his game but can be more restrained in the right circumstances - and his passing has greatly improved (86.6% with 0.6 key passes and 4.4 long balls - compared to his first PL season with Hull... 76.2% with 0.4 key passes and 3.5 long balls).
Awesome - so stats plus the "eye" test are the way to go. When I said old school I did not mean thug but he does not seem super top draw to me. He is good - do not get me wrong.

I have not seen much of the young English Cb we are linked with. Anyone have a view on the "eye " test?
 

Richard88

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Shaqiri has been here for 18 months. He was playing more frequently in the first 6 months after arriving than he has in the last 12. Shaqiri's lack of game time has little to do with Klopp taking his time to introduce him.
In his first 6 months at the club Shaqiri benefitted from the fact that Klopp used a 4231 in order to integrate Fabinho, as Fabinho felt more comfortable in a 2 at first. It's pretty clear that Klopp doesn't trust Shaqiri as much in a 433, so Fabinho was settled and we reverted back to 433 then Shaqiri's opportunities dried up considerably. There were rumours that Shaqiri wanted to leave near the transfer deadline last summer for more gametime, and as he hasn't been playing much (some of it due to injury) I'd be surprised if he doesn't move on this summer.
 

Richard88

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You are right on Hoever. For CB does he have the stature though?

Oh and pleased someone agrees with my theory :)
Yeah one of the downsides with Hoever is that he might just be a little too short for CB. Ideally CB's are at least 1.85m or taller. It's nothing serious, but at 1.80m you'd really hope he can grow an inch or two more. He does have a nice ability to get involved with attacks from fullback, but could work on his crossing if he's going to be a RB for us.
 

norwegian wood

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In his first 6 months at the club Shaqiri benefitted from the fact that Klopp used a 4231 in order to integrate Fabinho, as Fabinho felt more comfortable in a 2 at first. It's pretty clear that Klopp doesn't trust Shaqiri as much in a 433, so Fabinho was settled and we reverted back to 433 then Shaqiri's opportunities dried up considerably. There were rumours that Shaqiri wanted to leave near the transfer deadline last summer for more gametime, and as he hasn't been playing much (some of it due to injury) I'd be surprised if he doesn't move on this summer.
Agree, I think Shaqiri goes this summer. Not because the club wants to, but for more regular game time.

It comes down to player type in the end, I guess. When we have more of a playmaker at the #9 position, it makes sense to have a certain player type next to him. And while Shaqiri isn't a static player, he's not a runner who naturally will offer the required movement into the space Firmino creates.

If we mixed up the front line more frequently i.e. playmaking from the wing and pace up front, he would have more starts; but with the preferred setup being like it is, I don't see him getting too many.
 

Noo Noo

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Shaqiri has been here for 18 months. He was playing more frequently in the first 6 months after arriving than he has in the last 12. Shaqiri's lack of game time has little to do with Klopp taking his time to introduce him.
Fair point. I suspect that he might have played more this season if it wasn't for the injuries. We've also just refused a loan offer for him which does suggest some level of involvement this season at least.

I dont envy Klopp with this side of his job. He has to judge every player even to a level where he assesses whether younger players are ready to step up, maybe later or not at all.
 

Iluvatar

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Nope. Me neither. It’s not like Klopp to sign someone to cover a months absence.
Well if given the option of an African player of the same level as a European one do you think it may? Mainly if it was a forward though.
 

jgw_geneseo

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Nope. Me neither. It’s not like Klopp to sign someone to cover a months absence.
I'd be happy to see Minamino, Elliot, Origi, Brewster, Jones, Shaquiri, and Fimino of course, cover for Mane and Salah for a month. Possibly a new face if Shaquiri or Origi moves on as well. I think that's enough, and will give some of the kids a chance for a short window.

The club made noises a year or two ago about not bringing in a CF to not block Brewster's path to the first team. It hasn't really happened for him yet, but I wonder if the club feel the same way about Jones and Elliot now. No reason to bring in someone who could potentially block their path to the first team. Maybe Elliot in particular, when talking about one of the wide players in a front three. Not sure Jones is used exclusively in that position like Elliot is.

Not to mention whatever is going to happen with Wilson (I'm assuming he will be sold over the summer, but not sure).
 

Anfield rd Dreamer

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Even when fit Shaqiri is rarely asked to play, so i dont think injuries are the issue. I dont see us keeping Wilson either. He scores goals but still doesnt appear to have enough to his game to warrant a place in our first team ssquad.
Think he's been an unused sub like 10 times or something already this season and probably not made the match squad at all when fit sometimes on top of that. Not that shocking in and of itself but Salah has had issues with form and an ankle injury too so Klopp could have played him lots more. He just doesn't fit the playing style and tactics. We usually seem to switch to 4231 when he is involved too.
 
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