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joewilko Posted on 7/11 18:25
McLaren Tactics!!!!

The papers are saying Downing is the answer to Englands left hand side (which is true) so why does McLaren start the lad on the right you could see the difference when downing went to left n zenden came inside.
McLaren sumtyms doesnt have a clue?

holgate_rochey Posted on 7/11 18:30
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Just when I thought McClaren was starting to get the tactics spot on, he goes and puts Downing on the right. We all finally agreed that Zendens best position is in the middle however he was put back out on thr left, whats all that about?
I'm sure he had his reasons however it was the wrong decision IMO, but i'm not the manager...

nearly_new_casual Posted on 7/11 18:45
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Good Managers try different tactics against different teams and also change them during a game when they don't work.

I'd much rather see us trying different things than only having one way of playing

Pauleta_22 Posted on 7/11 18:48
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Because Boltons left back likes to get up the pitch and attack (where as the gangly right back does nothing) and knowing that Downing can cross with his right foot, Steve probably thought that when Gardener goes up the pitch if we get the ball to downing he is going to be able to run with a lot of space by doing so he would be dragging one of the centre backs out of position and creating more room for Jimmy and Job upfront.
Also he probably felt that we needed a stronger middle as Zenden does not always like to rough it up so by playing parlour it gives us more authority in the centre.

Thats why

peterbutler128 Posted on 7/11 18:50
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Agree Downing is much better on the left! But not gonna slag off ste mac he possibly just trying something thats worked well in training

ericpaylor Posted on 7/11 19:00
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Dont think anyone is slagging him off, they are just pointing out that he got the tactics wrong initially.

Pauleta_22 Posted on 7/11 19:02
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Look what I said, thats obviously what he was thinking I would of done the same thing

Grrreds Posted on 7/11 19:02
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

He is aware of that so he changed them after 20 minutes.

he knew Sam had watched us against lazio and seen the impact Downing had - so presumably tried to upset their plans.

Tried it, it didn't work, so he changed it. No problem.

holgate_rochey Posted on 7/11 19:02
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

As the home team, shouldnt we have let them worry about how we were going to play rather than the other way round..

SidSnot Posted on 7/11 19:08
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Clearly he got it wrong and probably also with the selection of Job in front of Viduka. However, he recognized it and changed it around. Bit disappointed he went with negating tactics as we were the home side but I'm sure he'll learn from it.

Scubahood Posted on 7/11 19:14
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Credit to him for recognising that it wasn't working though, he realised and he changed it as Grrreds said, and that's all that matters.

Didn't agree with the selection of Job today either, the guy is just too lightweight (which was the problem we had up front last season) when up against defenders as strong as Jaidi and N'gotty... however, you can understand it in a way, as Viduka isn't a player who looks like he can play two full games in four days, not at the moment anyway.

buts Posted on 7/11 19:16
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

i think fat sam would have expected downing on the left following thursday night so Mc tried to pull a fast one

rob_in_whitby Posted on 7/11 19:18
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Probably more to do with imposing a presence in central midfield through Parlour and Boateng, although I thought Zenden played much better when he came inside.

Mbould Posted on 7/11 19:32
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

FFS he cocked it up big style, unbelievable for him to switch things around.

We are the home side, we have just beaten Lazio, we are playing Bolton, we should worry about ourselves, not the opposition.

dooderooni Posted on 7/11 20:04
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

We put our 2 strongest tacklers into the middle to assert control over the game early on according to McClaren. I have no problem with that and neither do I have a problem with switching Zenden inside after about 25 minutes. We needed to be flexible against a strong Bolton side who's initial aim was to out-muscle us. The fact that they failed to do that says a lot about our midfield both before and after the switch.
Games ebb and flow and tactics change constantly, we tried a different formation early on and then changed it around when needed. Downing has had success down the right before now when he's switched wings himself so why not try it from the off?
We got a point out of a game that looked to be going away from us. We came up against a side that tried to frustrate us and used every trick in the book to stop us playing and slow the game down but we stuck at it and got some reward. That's 9 games unbeaten now, still 5th in league and yet some fans still need to have a dig at McClaren. I dispair at times, I really do.
I for one would rather see Mac try a few things and continue to get us playing progressive and entertaining football than adopt the tactics that Bolton employ in order to pick up points. Things won't always work out but having both the nous and ability to change things around when they don't is a better quality than being pig-headed and persisting with things regardless.

The_Boro_Biffa Posted on 7/11 20:09
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I thought McClarens tactics were good today

Bolton were expecting Downing on the left Zenden in the middle and Parlour on the right. When we started completely differently they had to change whatever they had palnned, then when we switched to how it should be (Zenden in the middle, Downing on the left, PArlour on the right) they didnt know how to deal with it and for about 20minutes after the switch we absolutely dominated.

Red_Clowne Posted on 7/11 20:21
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I thought McLaren's tactics were spot on and the reason for starting Downing on the right completely wrong footed Fat Sam.

He switched Downing after about 25 minutes, just after Hunt (have I spelt that right?) was booked for his treatment of Zenden (Bolo knows just how to go down to con a succession of free-kicks). Downing now goes head to head against Hunt - and he daren't touch him for the rest of the match.

SMac completely out smarts Dirty Sam - brilliant!

beera Posted on 7/11 20:36
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Dooderooni, that is spot on. We won`t play against a more physical team all season. Secondly, we will be playing more and more games this season, and ,hopefully we`ll play against teams that try and play football, and not that sheite that Bolton played today.

mowbrays_number_4 Posted on 8/11 0:11
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

erm,what about the tactics used to take off our full back,who was having a good game,and replace him with an attacking midfielder when we were 1-0 down.

the result of which was 1-1 with morrison integral in the move.


MrAngryCurrentlyInAberdeen Posted on 8/11 7:44
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Real good of you all to stick up for McClaren. Fact is we were largely ineffective, despite our possession. Never even looked like scoring until he brought Viduka on in the second half. Why give the opposition 45 minutes of safety? True they never looked like scoring from open play, either, but I'm more concerned with US scoring, and we were lucky to get that equaliser. Woodwork doesn't count.

mowbrays_number_4 Posted on 8/11 8:32
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

how were we lucky to get that equaliser exactly?

chris_top_her Posted on 8/11 8:55
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I think his tactics were...
Bolton have a strong battling midfield so put Boat and Parlour in the centre to get in the mix and have two proper wingers out on each side. That kinda worked as we were winning balls in the middle of teh park but attacking we didnt create much. So he changed things around which seemed to benifit us more.

Durham_Red Posted on 8/11 9:53
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Can totally understand way he started with Parlour in the centre along side the boat, but personally would have played Zenden right not downing.
As Zenden drifts inside anyway, don't think it would effect his game too much, while downing though he can come inside on his right from the Left hand side, it's totally different to being able to go pass people on the outside right.
When on the right, he kept coming inside, just where bolton wanted us to come!

blotonthelandscape Posted on 8/11 9:56
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

A bit late for the silly season, however carry on.

BobUpndown Posted on 8/11 10:03
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

just think, as D_R, downing left and bolo right.. can agree with boat and ray in the centre.. not that anything came through their midfield.. it all went over.. they'll be asking for sunluns floodlights next so davies can spot the "Super NIKE Yellow soccer sphere.. buy your kids one this holiday period"

T4Tomo Posted on 8/11 10:08
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Viduka wouldn't have lasted 90 minutes. You could start him and bring him off but I think better to put him on for the end of the game when its opening up a bit an dmore chances are created. fitted in with the "solid middle" for the first 25 mins.

BossHogg Posted on 8/11 10:10
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I've had my reservations about McClaren, but after Thursday I walked away a happy man and McClaren had proved me wrong (not easy to say), then after 30 mins yesterday my reservations had returned. We changed our team, at home, for a team of clobbers when we should be making them worry about us..

IMO : "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" !!.

Not on his case, just baffled and frustrated as to why we didn't start the game playing to our strengths and not theirs !!..

blotonthelandscape Posted on 8/11 10:12
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Reservations about a top six side, who would you swap McC for and why?

scoea Posted on 8/11 10:12
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I thought McClaren's tactics worked. It isn't about our strengths or our strengths - horses for courses.

BossHogg Posted on 8/11 10:19
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Blot, I'm not saying swap him, bin him or anything of the kind. IMO I was baffled by the way we started the game yesterday and I think the first 30 mins also affected the next 60..

Not that he'd care, but my view of him has been steadily improving, but yesterday he took a small backwards step..

Don't take my non-rosy view on yesterday out of context.

BoroMutt Posted on 8/11 10:21
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I can't see what else McClaren could have done. He put the tough tacklers in the middle to make sure we weren't overrun and he swapped Stewey to wide right. Given that the cross from which Zenden scored his second against Lazio was from Stewey on the right it wasn't that much of a gamble. After 20 minutes he swapped back how is that a problem?

Oh for the wonderful days of Robbo where the team that started were left to their own devices whilst he wrote down his bar order for half time...

"If it aint broke don't fix it" eh?

"Nothing ventured nothing gained"? There are "wise" proverbs for every occassion. Doesn't make them right though!

BoroTommo Posted on 8/11 10:42
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Agreed BoroMutt. Downings crosses have been more effective from the right as he whips them in to the edge of the 6 yard box with pace.
I think its useful to have such a fluid and versatile midfield which can keep the opposition guessing throughout the 90 minutes.

bodmass Posted on 8/11 12:13
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

McClaren got it wrong yesterday and wasted the first 25 mins. Simple as that.

Bolton came here trying to take the sting out of Boro's attack (mainly by time wasting) and stop us getting up a 'head of steam'. The way we started the game assisted them in achieving that. I bet fat Sam couldn't believe his luck the way Mac set his team up.

The way we started Yesterday resulted in both wide players cutting in field and crossing the ball into the penalty box from deep positions. Easy balls for Bolton's big Centre-Back's to deal with, especially as they had a size advantage against our forwards.

I don't buy this theory about Downing going on the right because Gardener likes to get forward. The type of manager Mac is he wouldn't tell Downing to say upfield and exploit the space, he would tell Downing to track back with Gardener.

Also I don't think he changed the team around to upset Sam's plans to deal with Downing, because Downing is not an easy player to stop. If he was then he would not have been so effective this season.

Fair enough if the manager wants to try something different then that's his choice. But he waited too long to change it when it obviously wasn't working. He should have waited no longer than 15 mins to change it around.

scoea Posted on 8/11 12:15
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

And what if he had started with the midfield 'as was' and Zenden had been overrun by Bolton's roughhouse tactics?

Job was also dropping into midfield for the first 25 mins to try and help us get a foothold in the game. Once we had that he switched things around.

Very good management.

sasboro Posted on 8/11 12:16
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

i think he got it wrong and cant understand why he would want to switch it. It was bad enough understanding why he dropped viduka to the bench when he need match fitness but why switch downing cos your more worried about boltons fullback.

if we had not got the goal, would some people have been prepared to admit he got it wrong?

if he started viduka and downing on the left..who knows we could have been 2-0 up or something at half time

--- Post edited by sasboro on 8/11 12:19 ---

rob_fmttm Posted on 8/11 12:21
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

No he didn't get it wrong. He was trying something if you stand still in football you get overtaken. Chelsea switched their wingers to good effect on Saturday. It's something we did at the Boro in the deep and distant past. Downing has switched well this season and made a real impression coming inside from the right.

Why the need to always point a finger at the manager? Why the need to always find someone to blame? I don't understand it at all.

sasboro Posted on 8/11 12:23
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

but why switch it when downing played so well against lazio??I can understand swtiching him to the right if after 20 minutes he has struggled on the left. or if he had a poor game against lazio then play him on the right from kick off.

BossHogg Posted on 8/11 12:32
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Rob, no-one is calling for his feckin head or anything !!. Is he beyond even the smallest critiscm during a debate ?, do we all have to have the same opinion on every signing, every game, every formation, every substitution etc etc etc ?.

To quote your good self Rob "I don't understand it at all."

--- Post edited by BossHogg on 8/11 12:33 ---

scoea Posted on 8/11 12:33
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

The answer is a relatively simple one@

1. Downing

Downing played so well at Lazio that BFS would expect him on the left and would have that as part of his game plan. Add to that the fact that he has done well on the right against Portsmouth and Lazio and it is easy to see why it was changed.

2. Viduka

Viduka has just come back from a recurrent back/hamstring/nerve irritation injury. Why start him and risk aggravating it when he has played a lot recently? In addition, Job was dropping into midfield in the first half to try and wrestle control of the game. You always go on that Viduka would not do that.

sasboro Posted on 8/11 12:42
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

but surely it is better to start with your best team and formation and try to get some goals, rather than play a weaker team and risk being a goal or 2 down and then change it and end up chasing the game.

MrAngryCurrentlyInAberdeen Posted on 8/11 12:43
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Lazio was the first game McClaren didn't change tactics or personnel, and after the team playing so well, and starting to gell, everyone expected him to continue in the same vein. No, instead he changes both tactics and personnel, and it is only when he resorts to the same tactics and same personnel that we started looking like we might get something out of the game.

He got it wrong, by worrying about the opposition, when he should be making them worry about us!

scoea Posted on 8/11 12:44
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

So are you advoctaing that McClaren picks his 11 best players and sticks with them in the same formation every week and does not adapt for any team?

BossHogg Posted on 8/11 12:51
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Tinkering for the sake of tinkering between Thurs and Sunday was not necessary IMO. Jimmy played well on Thursday so should we have stuck him at left back so as to confuse Bolton !! .

Having a different strategy for away games makes sense, but at home against the "mighty Bolton" seemed very odd to some of us !.

scoea Posted on 8/11 12:53
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

But it wasn't tinkering for tinkering's sake. I have explained why those decisions were taken and in my view they were the right ones. They got us a foothold in the game that we may not have hade if we had started with the same team.

MrAngryCurrentlyInAberdeen Posted on 8/11 12:55
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

We don't have the luxury of the Man Utd's and Chelsea's, to enable us to rotate personnel and change tactics to suit. They have a bigger squad, but more class players than we do for a start. Rotation doesn't always work even for them, otherwise Ranieri would still haev a job.

We need to play to our strengths, and we you identify a strength you don't weaken it if you can avoid it. The more often the same players play together, the better off they'll be as a unit. The second half proved that. Same tactics, same personnel, gave us much better effectiveness.

scoea Posted on 8/11 12:57
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Because we had got a foothold in the game in the first half.

Whether we have as good a squad as the top teams is irrelevant. It is a fact that the team shape and personnel will have to change with 3 games in a week.

MrAngryCurrentlyInAberdeen Posted on 8/11 13:05
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Yes, a fact, I agree. I just hope we don't weaken the side unduly by playing the likes of Job when Viduka is available.

I'll say it again. How can he get match-fit if he doesn't play? How many full games HAS he played since the start of the season?

BossHogg Posted on 8/11 13:10
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Scoea, no-ones out to lynch him on this thread, just having a good debate..

You often speak on Mc's behalf, as if you know him personally, and to you he is beyond even the smallest critiscm. I certainly hope he is not an in-flexible as you are, and that privately he admits to himself that maybe he should or shouldn't have done things during matches.

Just out of interest, has he ever made a bad decision in your eyes ?.

scoea Posted on 8/11 13:11
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Case of protecting him given his recent injury.

Your post suprises me BossHogg. Usually you will not go down that particular road. I don't know the man and I certainly have not defended every decision he has ever made. I find it ridiculous that you even suggest that.

--- Post edited by scoea on 8/11 13:14 ---

bodmass Posted on 8/11 13:15
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

We didn't need a foothold in the game.

Bolton sat back and said go on then attack us.

Their tactics were to soak up pressure and time waste. They never committed many players forward in open play, they didn't even pretend to want to score from open play. As soon as they crossed the halfway line they looked for a free kick. Then it was bring the big defenders up and pump the ball into the box. It was obvious Diouf was told - every time he got the ball -to carry it as far down the line as he could then 'go over' for a free kick.

Chelsea switch there wingers because they have two good wingers. We have one good winger. So lets put him on his best (most effective) side and stick with it.

scoea Posted on 8/11 13:18
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Bolton would have won the midfield battle with Zenden in there. McClaren recognised that and took steps to ensure we came out on top.

paulista Posted on 8/11 13:19
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I struggle to see how people say he got this one right? According to bolo the crowd was our 12th man on thursday, all mac did yesterday was take that out of the game becuase everyone was in a state of shock as to what he had done! cant even remember one chant in that 20min spell!

he did it cause he was worried about there physical presence, why can't we let them worry about our attacking flair, bolo has been a revelation in the middle why change it! It didn't work and hopefully he will have learnt from this!

paulista Posted on 8/11 13:22
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

oh and scoea, tell you what those 70mins that bolo played in the middle were nail biters, bolton were all over us like a rash!!

gibson Posted on 8/11 13:22
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Downing switched sides to fook up that master of tactics, Fat Sam.....simple.

scoea Posted on 8/11 13:22
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Do you mean the 70 mins in which they scored

sasboro Posted on 8/11 13:29
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

didnt we score in that 70 minutes? and viduka hit the bar whenhe came on

paulista Posted on 8/11 13:30
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

yeh the same ones where we had our FIRST shot, numerous chances, hit the woodwork twice and finally scored aswell, i think we both know the 70mins im talking about!

sambaDTR Posted on 8/11 13:31
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

He should have kept the same team and then changed it if we struggled. For the first twenty minutes we put no pressure on Bolton and allowed them a foothold into the game. Unlike the Carling Cup final where I do believe we were 2 up after 10 minutes. It's a good job we didn't do the same thing then!

scoea Posted on 8/11 13:31
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Our first shot!?!?!?!

So what you're saying then is that the last 70 mins had nothing to do with the first 20 when we established control of the game?

paulista Posted on 8/11 13:41
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

erm yeh!

Do you honestly believe we would have been one down if we had started the same side or even formation that had STARTED and WON our previous two games?? Surely?

I will praise Mac when he gets it right and he deserves credit for building this squad although I do believe hes stumbled on his best formation, one that is still a little to adventurous for his liking! I hope he will develop more confidence in attacking teams during this time that he has limited other options!

bodmass Posted on 8/11 13:43
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

'the first 20 when we established control of the game?'

I don't like to bring a debate down to the level of personnel insults, but you really don't have a clue do you.

It was Bolton who had control of the game in the first 20 mins.

We had not created one single chance during that period, whilst they were still getting the ball into our box via their set pieces. Which was the only way they were looking to score.

The game was going exactly as Bolton wished.

BossHogg Posted on 8/11 13:49
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Don't mean to be picky, but Downing switched over after 30 mins not 20, and in that 30 mins our only shot was a 40 yarder from Zenden..

Scoea, all I'm saying is that I don't recall you ever disagreeing with anything Smac has done, if you have, then fair enough..

--- Post edited by BossHogg on 8/11 13:56 ---

bodmass Posted on 8/11 14:01
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I'll give Mac his due for eventually changing it even though the switch came a little late for my liking. Robson would have sat on his arse and not made a change until it was far too late in the game.

Also thought his Morrison substitution was spot on and played a big part in getting us back in the game.

But I wont have anyone say he didn't make a mistake with his initial line-up and it was all part of some tactical master plan - BULLS**T.

gibson Posted on 8/11 14:05
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

IMHO, I would have thrown Viduka on from the start, apart from that , no real complaints.

scoea Posted on 8/11 14:08
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I am certainly not the clueless one here.

In fact, i would bet that I am one of the few on here to have watched the game again yesterday, having recorded it.

In the first 20 minutes we had to battle and scrap to EARN the right to play. It is all very well and good saying that we would have won had we playedthe same team as Lazio but the fact is that that is guesswork.

My view is that switching Downing to the right allowed Parlour to play in the centre. Similarly playing Job made our midfield a 5 when defending. That was designed to win the physical battle with Bolton. For my money it worked. Once we had got that out of the way, Mac changed it around and started to play.

It is called thinkg about the game. Something that a great many posters on here do not seem capable of.

bodmass Posted on 8/11 14:24
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!


Your not capable of spelling it never mind doing it !

Yes, a cheap shot I know but to good to miss.

scoea Posted on 8/11 14:27
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

That's "You're" and "too good to miss".


blotonthelandscape Posted on 8/11 14:27
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

It shows how far we have come when a draw with a top 4 side seems a disaster.

rob_fmttm Posted on 8/11 14:32
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Exactly. The team has progressed but maybe some of the supporters need to progress as well. Take off the blinkers and see the bigger picture for a change.

Prepares to get shot down in flames.

scoea Posted on 8/11 14:33
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

You will Rob I'm afraid but I agree with you entirely.

sasboro Posted on 8/11 14:38
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

They should get fordy involved in tactics to keep rob happy

I think it's about time harrison got more credit as he's at the training ground more than smac and smac never turns up to the game until 20 minutes left.

had we started with our strongest team in their best positions then no doubt we would have won 2-0 or similar. so it was 2 points dropped to be honest. and the poor start cost us.

--- Post edited by sasboro on 8/11 14:40 ---

blotonthelandscape Posted on 8/11 14:39
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Er, what did you say then.

captain5 Posted on 8/11 14:40
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

"and smac never turns up to the game until 20 minutes left."

Run that one by me again.

scoea Posted on 8/11 14:41
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Sas in drug taking shame.

Ban him for 7 months, it's a disgrace!

Gillandi Posted on 8/11 14:42
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

It's great to have such a great thinker and tactician as a manager and it's even better knowing that among our fans we have even greater thinkers and tacticians.

Maybe one day one of them will get a chance to step up to the plate.

The future is very bright indeed.

Well done everyone.

stoney04 Posted on 8/11 14:43
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

he started with parlour in the middle to add a bit of style to the midfield. tried downing on the right but when he saw this wasnt working he changed it. thought parlour was brilliant yesterday and for those who jus cant resist having a pop at Mac then get stuffed. this guy should be un-sackable after bringing us our first ever trophy

paulista Posted on 8/11 14:44
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Scoea did i miss something did sam substitute his entire midfield after 20mins, in my opinion a midfield battle isn't won or lost in the space of 20mins, i know there old but we didn't tire there midfield after that short a period of time did we?

The fact is we were better after the switch, plain and simple!

I am all for trying new things but this post is about whether it worked or not! It didn't but fair play to mclaren for realising that!

sasboro Posted on 8/11 14:45
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

who said about getting him sacked? people are just pointing out that he got the tactics wrong,

captain5 Posted on 8/11 14:46
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

"and smac never turns up to the game until 20 minutes left."

Come on.

blotonthelandscape Posted on 8/11 14:47
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

No, he had tactics that you disagree with, not quite the same.

sasboro Posted on 8/11 14:48
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

he isnt in the dug out until about 70 minutes into the game and leave everything to harrison

scoea Posted on 8/11 14:49
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

No you miss my point paulista. The opening part of games in the Prem are almost always cagey and the team that comes out on top after that period often wins the game. Bolton started the game trying to bully us in midfield. It was important that we withstood that and got a foothold in the game. McClaren's tactics achieved that.

captain5 Posted on 8/11 14:49
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

So, it's Harrison's tactics that we are disagreeing with then??

scoea Posted on 8/11 14:50
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

And Sas the amount of rubbish that you spout is amazing.


boroboy75 Posted on 8/11 14:50
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

He spends the first 70 minutes talking tactics with his number 1 fan, scoea.

scoea Posted on 8/11 14:51
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

And suddenly all the cretins come out of the woodwork.

Afternoon BB75.

Gillandi Posted on 8/11 14:52
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

How come we conceded a goal during the time our tactics were "right" and didnt when they were "wrong".

bodmass Posted on 8/11 14:53
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

If we won the physical battle early on in the game then why did we not start to lose it after the switch ?

Look at Bolton's midfield. Hierro sat directly in front of the defence. Nolan and Speed just in front of him. None of them were looking to get forward and support the attack or trying to over power our midfield to push Boro back and put them under sustained pressure from OPEN play.

They were basically just sitting in front of the defence and trying to protect it. They never wanted to get forward because they would open up gaps in front of the defence which Boro could exploit. It was the wide men (Diouf and Giannakopoulos) who had the job of getting forward and (I won't say support the attack) 'winning' set pieces. Bolton only brought players forward (in numbers) for these set pieces.

It's not like Boro were facing midfielders like Lampard and Gerrard who can get stuck in, take a game by the scruff of the neck and drive their team onwards.

The tactics Bolton employed meant there WAS NO midfield battle as such to be won.

scoea Posted on 8/11 14:54
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

That post shows just how little you understand.

It is called EARNING the right to play.

bodmass Posted on 8/11 14:59
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Bolton never came TO PLAY.

They came to spoil and play percentage football from set pieces.

Gillandi Posted on 8/11 15:02
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I'd imagine Big Fat Sam's half team talk wasn't the easiest to make.

"Er, well, er, to be honest, i'm not sure what they are doing today or who's playing where for them, so can't say much except, er, obviously forget everything we discussed on friday, saturday and before the game about their system and just keep wasting time, keep our fingers crossed and hope we get a break from a corner in the fourth or fifth phase".

--- Post edited by Gillandi on 8/11 15:05 ---

scoea Posted on 8/11 15:04
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

No Gillandi, that is all wrong. What he should do is pick the same team and the same formation every week. It's obvious really

BossHogg Posted on 8/11 15:04
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

So the argument, sorry debate, on this thread is that if you agree with the manager "you know your stuff", if you happen to think the manager was incorrect in his thinking, no matter how small "you don't understand football".

It's all clear now !!.

scoea Posted on 8/11 15:06
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Pot, kettle and black BossHogg.

Apparently, if you support McClaren's choice on Sunday you are inflexible and maybe even 'know' McClaren. Just waiting for the "rose-tinted" remarks to come now.

sasboro Posted on 8/11 15:07
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

big_sam got the tactics spot as he came for a point and got a point and nearly got all 3!

boroboy75 Posted on 8/11 15:09
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Someone buys themself a Boro benchcoat, and all of a sudden they are self-proclaimed tactical geniuses!

scoea Posted on 8/11 15:11
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Sas - you are quite prepared to give BFS praise for tactics but when it comes to McClaren, only criticism.

Sounds about right!

skiprat Posted on 8/11 15:12
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!


sasboro Posted on 8/11 15:14
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

in this game we were after 3 points and bolton after 1 points, so which manager got it spot on?

Gillandi Posted on 8/11 15:15
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I'd agree with that sas.

I also think Mac got his tactics spot on because we were clearly the better of the two teams and deserved to win the game.

No hard feelings on my part though, they deserved their point for their determination and carefully honed spoiling techniques.

They didn't deserve 3 points for it and I thought it was a great result that they didn't get them.

I wonder which tactics Arsene Wenger got wrong the day Bolton went to Arsenal and scored twice in a 2-2 draw this season.

Mind, he's always been a bit clueless.

RIVERTEES Posted on 8/11 15:17
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

What is wrong with critical debate? The only thing predictable is the 20:20 hindsight macophants calling the analysts "stupid" for diputing some of his decisions. Yawn. FFS even Mac knew he screwed up - the guy is human not a god!

scoea Posted on 8/11 15:18
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Anyone else spot the irony in Rivertees' post?

Gillandi Posted on 8/11 15:20
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Yeah, excuse me for being happy. How can anyone really argue with a sentence like....

"McLaren sumtyms doesnt have a clue?"

Gillandi Posted on 8/11 15:21
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

scoea - Just one point of irony in RiverT's post? I count 3 or 4.

blotonthelandscape Posted on 8/11 15:21
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

over 100 in less that 24 hours, now that does not happen very often.

RIVERTEES Posted on 8/11 15:23
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

only you, as you clearly have the highest brow!

BossHogg Posted on 8/11 15:25
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Never mind your pot, kettle rubbish..

I've never made or will ever make statements like :-

"That post shows just how little you understand"


"It is called thinkg about the game. Something that a great many posters on here do not seem capable of."

and therein, lies the difference..

bodmass Posted on 8/11 15:26
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

' How come we conceded a goal during the time our tactics were "right" and didnt when they were "wrong". '

Because Bolton were playing percentage football from set pieces. Ever free-kick in our half of the pitch and every throw-in around our box went directly into the box. They moved their big defenders up from the back to attack these balls into the box. If they do this every time - by the law of averages - a percentage of these set pieces will result in a goal, even if it's only less than 5%. It's irrelevant whether this goal comes early in the game or late.

They played this way because Sam probably realised if he attempted to play an open game of football against us he would get slaughtered. So he kept it tight and relied on set pieces.

The way we started never really affected how they were trying to score a goal because every time they were in our half they just looked for a set piece. But it did affect the way we attacked i.e. we never made a chance until Mac changed it. Within 30 secs of changing it Downing skinned their full back and put our first cross into the box from the by-line. The statistics prove we never created a chance until he changed it. After he changed it we started to create. IMO we wasted the first 25 to 30 mins of the game and played right into their hands.

Red_Clowne Posted on 8/11 15:30
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I'll say it again.

Hunt (the grim reaper) was going to kick the crAp out of Downing if he'd been up against him from the start . As soon as Zenden had got him booked SMac swapped him over. Didn't dare touch him after that.

Smac 1 Fat Sam 0

scoea Posted on 8/11 15:33
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Hark at you BossHogg. Come down off your high horse and join me.

There is no real difference and you know it.

Gillandi Posted on 8/11 15:39
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Bodmass - How did you think Stu Downing did against Ivan Campo?

I couldn't believe Sam put him on at right-back against Stu Downing, he must be the slowest player in their squad, it looked like suicide to me, on paper I thought he was going to ruin riot down their left but he didn't. Downing was as quiet as he's been for a while. It's no criticism of Downing, it's to Bolton as a team but I think it makes a point that just by putting Downing on the left it doesn't make everyting instantly right and proper.

It's all very subjective and I agree with your basic vieww of the game but It could easily be said that it was because of the unorthodox line up from the kick off that Downing, Zenden and Boro as a team were able to come to life in the way they did and it worked perfectly because I thought we played our best football and had the most impetus in that 15 minute spell.

Had we scored in that period we may well have won the game quite comfortably. It would have meant an extra 10 minutes of the ball being actually in play at least.

The fact that we never really picked up that impetus immediately at the start of the second half makes the idea that we would have been all conquering from the kick off of the first half if Mac hadnt "got it wrong" look suspect.

--- Post edited by Gillandi on 8/11 15:44 ---

boroboy75 Posted on 8/11 15:41
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

It wasn't Campo.
Just a similar comedy wig.

bodmass Posted on 8/11 15:41
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Is Gardener incapable of kicking Downing ?

Is Downing incapable of getting a player booked ?

If Downing was easily stopped by kicking him then he wouldn't have had such a good season so far. If Hunt was intent on kicking Downing from the start then it would make more sense to put Downing on the left wing from the beginning. Then get the ball out to him as much as possible and get Hunt booked earlier in the game.

Also the switch never took place until some time after Hunts booking.

I take it you were joking ?

scoea Posted on 8/11 15:48
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Spot on Gillandi.

bodmass Posted on 8/11 16:12
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I agree we would not have become all conquering if Downing started on the left and we still would have suffered lulls in the game. But I think we would have been more effective over 90 mins and not just 60 mins. Even during quite spells we can still present more of a threat. Just after half time Viduka hit the post from a Downing cross during a quite spell.

I can understand why McClaren would like Parlour and Boateng in the middle because they do look solid together. But I can't understand why he put Downing on the right. Of all our wide players Downing is the one most capable of going outside a full back and crossing dangerous balls from the by-line. Zenden has less pace so is not capable of achieving this as often as Downing.

If Mac wanted Parlour and Boateng in the middle then IMO he should have put Zenden on the right. After all he tends to cut inside anyway.

Sam got a point Yesterday because he came here with a game plan. He picked tactics to suit the strengths of his team. He then stuck by those tactics from the beginning and throughout the game. He played the percentages and it came off for him.

I would like to see McClaren also play the percentages which suit our strengths i.e. If you play Downing on the left from the beginning of the game and get him to attack the fullback. Then he will beat him more often than not and put in quality balls more often than not. A decent percentage of which will result in goals.

scoea Posted on 8/11 16:14
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

One of our strengths is adaptability.

bodmass Posted on 8/11 16:34
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

OK scosa - 'adaptability'

Would you agree that if due to 'perceived' adaptability we can play players in a number of different positions, then all those possible permutations will not be of equal effectiveness?

i.e. some line ups will be better than others.

If you do agree with this then do you not also agree you should attempt to pick your strongest possible permutation from the players you have available on the day?

What I'm trying to say is adaptability is OK when you have to cover injuries and suspensions. But adaptability is no good if you are not picking your best players in their best positions.

Gillandi Posted on 8/11 16:38
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Our chief weapon is surprise...surprise and fear...fear and surprise.... Our two weapons are fear and surprise...and ruthless efficiency.... Our *three* weapons are fear, surprise, and ruthless efficiency...and an almost fanatical devotion to the Pope.... Our *four* *Amongst* our weapons.... Amongst our weaponry...are such elements as fear, surprise.... I'll come in again.

scoea Posted on 8/11 16:38
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

No I don't agree.

Adaptability means playing people in different positions to do a job for the team when the tactics dictate it.

It is arguable that Downing has been most effective in recent weeks from the right. It is almost certain that Parlour is at his best in the middle.

Horses for courses. Mac felt that we had to be strong in the middle of the park (and was right IMO) and so picked Parlour in his most effective position rather than Downing.

This just smacks of the Downing brigade making sure that he starts in his best position come what may.

sasboro Posted on 8/11 16:41
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

"This just smacks of the Downing brigade making sure that he starts in his best position come what may"

exactly! So he can get more crosses over for the strikers

BossHogg Posted on 8/11 16:47
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

"This just smacks of the Downing brigade making sure that he starts in his best position come what may."

"Downing FC", anyone !!.

bodmass Posted on 8/11 16:48
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

So while everybody is crying 'Downing for England on the left wing.'

You're going to start crying 'Downing for England on the right wing.'

scoea Posted on 8/11 16:51
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Yeah, that's what I wrote.

get a grip.

Gillandi Posted on 8/11 16:51
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Stuart Downing blew his chance of being Englands future left sided midfielder by scoring that wonder goal from the right hand side against Portsmouth.

The finest stone masoning hands in the country didn't chip these rules into tablets of marble centuries ago for Mac to come along and put a dust sheet over them..

RIVERTEES Posted on 8/11 17:00
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

The same macophants wanted Downing out a few weeks ago - now that he's come good (as predicted) the 20:20 retrovison Macophant clique whinge.

scoea Posted on 8/11 17:01
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Absolute rubbish RIVERTEES

bodmass Posted on 8/11 17:02
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

I'm not saying he is incapable of contributing at all from the right wing.

Just that he is far more effective on his natural left wing.

Yes he scored a good goal from the right against Pompey. However he's scored more and created far more from the left this season and will continue to do so.

scoea Posted on 8/11 17:04
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

That isn't in doubt though. All I am saying is that he is more than capable on the right and that allowed Parlour to move inside and compete.

You may not agree with Mac's decision but I do.

bodmass Posted on 8/11 17:10
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

Moving him onto the right greatly reduces his effectiveness.

He could still have played Parlour in the middle and put Downing on the left.

BossHogg Posted on 8/11 17:12
re: McLaren Tactics!!!!

This isn't only a debate about downing !.

Zenden has recently proved that he his most effective position is in the centre of midfield and it also gives the team more attacking impetus.

So basically Zenden, Downing all Parlour were all re-positioned after the team produced, arguably, it's best performance for some time !!.

Scoea, Gillandi, you have your opinion, some of us don't sgree, whats wrong with that ??.. Your not wrong (well maybe you are ), but neither are we..

--- Post edited by BossHogg on 8/11 17:13 ---