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That's true but Momo really has to show some sign of progress next season. He's great at what he does but I want to see him moulded into a Viera type player. He has to push forward more when Mascherano is behind him. On a related note the same goes for Alonso. I read that Alonso scored 12 or 13 goals for Sociedad in the season before he left. He needs to get up onto the edge of the box and just shoot sometimes. Mascherano is the best young defensive midfielder on the planet. His team mates need to let him do his job and adapt their game to make use of him.

I agree with you there. The thing is though; he's still young and needs time. He was really pushing forward the other night against Middlesbrough and was involved in a few good bits of play, only to fluff his lines when it came to the finish. Rafa has shown tremendous faith in him and I think he'll fulfill his potential with us, just not over night.

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As I've said before; I'd sooner we bought a couple of players with a bit of pace and flair, than splash all our cash on a poacher.

The wings have where we've been let down over the past few years. Look how many goals Crouch has scored recently thanks to finally having some decent crosses coming in.

So this summer I think we need to concentrate on getting 2 quality wingers. Pennant and Gonzales are decent, but young and inconsistent. Might be worth going back in for Simao seeing as he can play both left and right.

Our defence is pretty much sorted (though I still worry over left back) and this summer will no doubt see the culling of the goalkeepers. We've got like 6 on our books (Reina, Carson, Dudek, Padelli, Martin, Roberts). Central midfield is our strongest area - I can see us signing Mascherano sooner rather than later if his form continues.

So that just leaves the strikers. We're being linked with so many at the moment, at least one has to go if we definitely sign someone. Most likely Bellamy.

In all, this summer is very unlikely to be like the one Chelsea had when they got bought. It'll be a case of getting rid of a couple of players, and bringing in a couple of quality replacements. The team is still very young and needs to start gelling together, with none of the mass changes like the last few summers.

In other news....anyone going to the 2nd leg of the Youth Cup Final on Thursday? We've been given an extra 1000 tickets, and it's only a fiver. The team played great on Monday so I see no reason why we can't win 2-0 on the night. Well, apart from the fact it's Utd. I fear getting them in the Champions League, they seem to have a hex over us again.

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The wings have where we've been let down over the past few years. Look how many goals Crouch has scored recently thanks to finally having some decent crosses coming in.

So this summer I think we need to concentrate on getting 2 quality wingers. Pennant and Gonzales are decent, but young and inconsistent. Might be worth going back in for Simao seeing as he can play both left and right.

Our defence is pretty much sorted (though I still worry over left back) and this summer will no doubt see the culling of the goalkeepers. We've got like 6 on our books (Reina, Carson, Dudek, Padelli, Martin, Roberts). Central midfield is our strongest area - I can see us signing Mascherano sooner rather than later if his form continues.

So that just leaves the strikers. We're being linked with so many at the moment, at least one has to go if we definitely sign someone. Most likely Bellamy.

In all, this summer is very unlikely to be like the one Chelsea had when they got bought. It'll be a case of getting rid of a couple of players, and bringing in a couple of quality replacements. The team is still very young and needs to start gelling together, with none of the mass changes like the last few summers.

Some interesting points in that post. I do see us possibly getting another wide man but I think it will be Alves for the right with Kewell, Gonzalez and Leto to fight over the left. You are right about left back. Riise's form has understandably been poor and when Aurelio finally gets a bit of form he gets crocked. Insua sounds decent but he's very young and Arbeloa can obviously play there so we are not completely stuck. Gareth Bale and Leighton Baines would be good signings but I expect a silly stampede for Bales signature. Obviously Dudek's off and Carson surely won't sit on the bench so hopefully he can stay out on loan again. Carson's had a damn good season but personally I really don't think he's in the same bracket as Reina. Peter Cech's probably the best keeper on the planet but I wouldn't swap Pepe for any other keeper. He reads the game better than anybody. With our defense holding a high line all the time our keeper literally has to play as a sweeper sometimes and there's nobody better than Reina at that. Bellamy is current favourite to leave, along with God obviously, but people forget his fine form in earlier parts of the season. Could we use five strikers? I think that possibility could be a reality next season. As I said before I think we'll make only two 'first team' signings this summer. Right now my money's on Tevez and Alves. I think they are realistic signings and both players would walk to Anfield to get to play for our club.

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I do see us possibly getting another wide man but I think it will be Alves for the right with Kewell, Gonzalez and Leto to fight over the left.

Gonzalez and Leto are both young (and in Leto's case untested in the Premiership) and with Kewell's injury troubles I'm not convinced we're going to get the same player back when he's fit. Alves would be great for the right, but I can see him being stupidly expensive - especially if Chelsea/Real Madrid get involved.

You are right about left back. Riise's form has understandably been poor and when Aurelio finally gets a bit of form he gets crocked. Insua sounds decent but he's very young and Arbeloa can obviously play there so we are not completely stuck. Gareth Bale and Leighton Baines would be good signings but I expect a silly stampede for Bales signature.

We might be able to kill 2 birds with one stone by getting a quality left-back, then having Riise/Aurelio play left wing. Riise has definitely produced his best form there this season.

Bellamy is current favourite to leave, along with God obviously, but people forget his fine form in earlier parts of the season. Could we use five strikers? I think that possibility could be a reality next season.

It's not really whether we could use five strikers, but if those strikers could be kept happy. If we do manage to get someone like Eto'o, he'd be first choice with Crouch and Kuyt as second/third. Which would leave Bellamy and Voronin replacing Fowler - and I don't think Bellamy would be too happy playing 7 games next season.

As I said before I think we'll make only two 'first team' signings this summer. Right now my money's on Tevez and Alves. I think they are realistic signings and both players would walk to Anfield to get to play for our club.

And they rhyme -_- Tevez is probably the more likely, I'm just not convinced he's the right type of striker. We've already got 2 (and with Voronin, 3) hard working strikers, and they've only managed to get 10 goals a piece in the Premiership. If we want to win it next year, we really do need an Owen/Drogba/Van Nistelrooy to complement Crouch/Kuyt. As someone was saying before, if we had Drogba and C Ronaldo in our team this year we'd have probably won the title - a striker and winger of that calibre is what we need to get to the next level.

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Tevez is absolute quality though. Better than any of our current strikers in my opinion.

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The difference between Tevez and the strikers already at the club is flair. Tevez has it in abundance.

Oh and btw, it's 1-0 - Kuyt.

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Benitez seems to be giving Finnan a bit of a long rest for the Champions League game, when was the last time he was even on the bench? Is he injured?

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I don't think he's injured. Just rested as he's played so much this season.

Pennant had another very good game. He was excellent, in fact.

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The difference between Tevez and the strikers already at the club is flair. Tevez has it in abundance.

Does he have Bellamy/Cisse levels of pace? We do miss that when playing Kuyt and Crouch up front.

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Just a shame it sounded like Gonzalez had such a poor game again -_-

He had a mixed game. He was always making himself available as an outlet, making positive runs etc. There was little to no end product, though.

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He had a mixed game. He was always making himself available as an outlet, making positive runs etc. There was little to no end product, though.

Well at least he was trying. Bit worrying there was still no end product though, seems to have been like that all season. Hopefully next season will be when he shines.

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He produced some good moments just couldn't get a final ball. Pennant looks super-confident now and he's definitely secured his future at the club.

Arbeloa was brilliant today, absolutely superb.

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Arbeloa was brilliant today, absolutely superb.

And to think - we almost had Lucas Neill instead :angry:

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And to think - we almost had Lucas Neill instead :angry:

Until the Baros windfall Lucas Neill was our solitary option.

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What's everyone's 'best case scenarios' at the moment? Apart from us winning the Champion's League (obviously), I'd prefer ManYoo to win the FA cup and Chelsea to win the league because

1) Chelsea slightly less likely to blow ridiculous amounts of players at Summer

2) People still won't respect Chelsea regardless

3) ManYoo will have a trophy, but not quite as good as us and

4) Chelsea's 'double' will be the same as two years ago, so it won't look like much progress at all

I think...

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What's everyone's 'best case scenarios' at the moment? Apart from us winning the Champion's League (obviously), I'd prefer ManYoo to win the FA cup and Chelsea to win the league because

1) Chelsea slightly less likely to blow ridiculous amounts of players at Summer

2) People still won't respect Chelsea regardless

3) ManYoo will have a trophy, but not quite as good as us and

4) Chelsea's 'double' will be the same as two years ago, so it won't look like much progress at all

I think...

Man Utd to win absolutely nothing is always my ultimate best case scenario.

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Chelsea to win the league because...

5) If Man U win, that's them one step closer to our league title total.

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:angry:

The next home match you're going to I am going to as well. You're like a southern version of me.

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I can see us signing Mascherano sooner rather than later if his form continues.

Anyone know how much he's gonna cost us? I've heard £12million mentioned (by a ManYoo fan!).

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The next home match you're going to I am going to as well. You're like a southern version of me.

:angry:

Good stuff, looking forward to it.

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Confident win yesterday and a great second goal from Kuyt. Pennant looked brimming with confidence, as someone else has mentioned but I still reckon Benitez won't play him on wednesday :). His crossing is superb at the moment and I want him to be whipping them in all night long against Chelsea.

Good to see the Scum lost points yesterday and the boys in the Man U thread panicking all over the place! :angry: They were extremely lucky (although it wasn't much of a surprise) not to give a way a penalty as well!

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Anyone know how much he's gonna cost us? I've heard £12million mentioned (by a ManYoo fan!).

Originally I heard it was £8million, then I heard £17million (which is also what the latest Football Manager update says :lol: )

So...no idea. But he's worth it even at £17million I reckon.

Pennant looked brimming with confidence, as someone else has mentioned but I still reckon Benitez won't play him on wednesday :(.

I think the defence will definitely be:

------------Reina

Finnan Carra Agger Arbeloa

With Riise playing left-wing. The rest of the midfield and strikeforce depend on where he wants to use Gerrard:

Gerrard Alonso Mascherano Riise

----------Crouch Bellamy

Pennant Alonso Mascherano Riise

----------Crouch Gerrard

But I don't think I should try and second-guess Benitez too much :(

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He could opt for Momo in the middle for the away leg. I can see us trying to smother and contain them as we did Barca in the Nou Camp. Purely based on that, I don't see Pennant starting. It is Rafa though, so God knows the team he'll pick.

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He could opt for Momo in the middle for the away leg.

I don't know whether he'd risk Momo considering his form lately. I know he did a good job against Barca, but I'd be worried if I saw him starting against Chelsea.

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I'm not saying he should start, I'd go with Alonso and Mascherano, personally. I just feel Rafa may use him to break up the play and keep them frustrated.

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Ah fair enough.

Still can't believe we're at this stage of the season already. Just glad we've got the Champions League spot secured for next season now, so we can concentrate on the Chelsea games.

And the final :lol:

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