Jamie wrote:The biggest positive is Cooks ability to play the 'big man' role, he looked very good in the air and competed well against better opposition. Maynard didn't really get a chance to show what he can do.
Great to see White back in the team and looking fit.
The biggest issue we have is CJ and formation. With the 3 Centre Backs we have, we almost have to play 3 at the back, non of them will be happy to warm the bench or fight for a place. So that means Mal and White as wing backs and leaves us a CJ problem.
My big fear is that with Cook up front we'll just go long too often, we did last night but i'll put that down to the quality we were against, but we need to play the ball forward more. We're ok at keeping it and retaining possession, but weren't great at moving it forward unless it was a high ball.
Bish did look well off the pace, hopefully Tomo isn't injured badly and he can keep Bish on his toes or come in if required. Mellis and Khan will fight for the position behind the strikers, although for home games we could probably get away with Bish/Tomo alongside Mellis and Khan in behind.
Agree with the summary here, though I think Mellis or maybe Donohue (supposedly tidy on the ball) when fit should be the one to play alongside Bishop/Tomlinson in this formation regardless of us being at home or away.
You rightly point out that we weren’t great at moving the ball forward unless it was a long ball, and in my opinion this comes from having 2 of Macca, Bishop, and Tomlinson in the same side as the midfield pairing. They’re all grafters but often lack the composure to receive the ball from a defender in midfield areas, turn and make a progressive pass which is why we kept going quite direct - happened at the back end of last season too at times. At the moment in this system Mellis would be in midfield for me (as he’s by far the most comfortable in receiving the ball from defenders) with Khan behind the strikers as he’s looking sharp.
Edit: and once posted, I see I’ve essentially repeated the post above