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I think it's more the manner of which he's been disappointing, not just the overall body of work. He's shown fantastic dribbling skills, pace, change of pace and shooting ability, and now he's shown none of that. Just straight runs, muscled off the ball, and dispossesed immediately. I'm not calling him rubbish by any means, 3 games, 2 vs Arsenal and Man City are certainly not an easy welcome to the Prem. However, I can't fight his cause for the shocking performance vs WBA.. He showed a little life when switched to the right side, but the most telling thing is that Roy took him off after what 55" or so? I don't want to dismiss him just yet, because he was on the free, but he's got to start showing a bit of something soon. W/ Kuyt out, maybe rw is his calling ?
As for Babel, me personally, he's driven me to my wits end with his great and poor performances, but I've wanted thim to have a starting spot in 1 position for 1 significant period of time. I don't know, maybe someone can find a stat, what's his longest consecutive streak of starts, and in 1 position? He says he's a striker, though he doesn't have the attributes of most European strikers, he's been on the left and on the right.. I just don't know.
Just for argument's sake, since I do think he's the most perplexing player on the team, would anyone be shocked if he went to United and became a winger of Antonio Valencia's quality? I wouldn't to be honest.. That's what frightens me of him playing elsewhere, someone getting in that thick skull of his and turning out a near top tier wide player.
I think you can sleep easily, Jason.
There is no way in the world that Babel will become a wide man of Valencia's ability - no matter who has a word in his ear.
Now, maybe if they threaten to cut his ear off ...
No, seriously the guy doesn't have the natural inclination to play the wide role. As soon as he gets the ball, if he manages to get it under control his first movement is infield, regardless of whether he is playing left side or right. This suggests, only suggests mind you, that just maybe he could be a striker but having seen as many of his shots hit the corner flag as hit the target I think it is a very loooooooong stretch to even consider him as anything like a striker. Certainly at this level.
I'm not going to defend Jova because there is just not a body of work from which to make a determination, which is the same reason I think its unfair to slate him.
However Babel does have a body of work. I don't have specific stats, and to be honest with so many appearances it would take ages to gather them. However what I can say is that when he has impressed its been from the bench, but the vast majority of times when he's started he's disappointed. Seems to me that is not a strong argument to given him more starts.
- 1 Reply to dsteer_lfc_68
Valid points. To be fair to Jova, I'll say maybe after these next 5 matches in 15 days we'll know if he's got anything or nothing at all.
I agree Babel has often been alot more effective when coming on as a sub and not so much as a starter, but I feel he's in last chance saloon with Roy who has gotten alot more from much less. And, until January he really has to become a key figure in some capacity, because Kuyt is hurt and there's certainly no guarantee anyone else won't get injured along the way.
That's one thing i've never got Jason, why play him on the left? Not just Rafa, Ajax and Holland as well. He doesn't have a left foot, he always cuts inside to shoot so at least stick him on the right where he can stay wide and whips balls in.
As for Jova, 3 games is a bit too soon to write him off but I just wish he would be stay wide and not come 30 yards in field...any further in field and he would be on the opposite wing!
- 1 Reply to DANIEL B
I think you'll find that is the current trend with wingers, play them on the opposite side. That is why we see Adam Johnson playing on the right for England and City despite being primarily a left footer, and Milner out on the left.
I understand the argument of wanting wingers to head for the corner flag and whipping in crosses, but more and more managers are setting that role to overlapping full backs, while wingers are expected to cut inside and in effect become inside rights or lefts supporting a lone striker.