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Failure To Play Squad Game Has Cost Them Dear
Footytubeblog (Blog) 4 years ago
While both Manchester United and Arsenal appear to get the upper hand over their great rivals as the season draws to the close; the inquests will start at White Hart Lane and the Etihad Stadium as to how both of their clubs squandered what at one stage seemed comfortable leads.

They say you don’t need a weatherman to tell you when it’s raining and you don’t need to be brains of Britain to realise where the failings of both Redknapp and Mancini has really been this season. Both men’s inability to play the squad game that has left their best XI burnt out and running on empty at the very time they need them most and subsequently they have been throwing points away left, right and centre. The likes of Modric, Silva, Parker, Aguero and Walker are just perfect examples of players who have been a shade of their former self that we saw earlier in the season.

Tottenham fans will tell you they are not surprised as they witnessed much the same last season, as Redknapp seemingly has the inability to rest players or go into a game without picking his best possible XI, despite them being on their last legs. He inexplicably let Vedran Corluka go out on loan leaving Kyle Walker (a player who due to international commitments hasn’t had a rest in nearly two years) as the only right back at the club. Neutrals out there continue to show their amazement at those Spurs fans who question Harry’s managerial abilities, but it is decisions like the one with Corluka that has supporters shaking their head. Top clubs understand the need to rotate to keep players fresh and alert, but Redknapp and Mancini clearly have little trust in their squads and subsequently have been made to pay for it as the season has gone by.

In many ways there is no excuse (especially in Man City’s case given the money at their disposal) as both clubs do have sizeable squads that are the envy of many within the Premier League, but are only used when injury dictates their call-up. This season we have seen Modric for example play in every position in midfield, for the sake of his inclusion, when someone like a Niko Kranjcar or Steven Pienaar would have arguably been more suited in the wide areas for Spurs.

So why have managers like Redknapp and Mancini been so hesitant and is it simply down to inexperience in the upper echelons in the Premier League? Certainly in the lesser games you don’t see the likes of Fergie being overly concerned in taking out his big guns and entrusting the second string to do a job. In many ways it actually has a desired effect as the stiffs go out there trying to prove a point, oppose to the more established stars who go out there at times with an air of complacency about them. Both have fallen victim to this in recent weeks and it does leave you wondering ‘what if’.

This season has ended up being a real disappointment for both clubs, given their early season promise and why I firmly predict that both clubs will eventually surpass their more illustrious rivals in the coming season, largely down to their respective potential; they need to learn a lesson from this year and start playing the squad game in order to succeed. Whether both Redknapp and Mancini have the ability to change remains to be seen, but I firmly believe their future success could depend on it.

Written By Jay Hammond


This blog does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of footytube or its partners.
Somere (Portmore Utd) 4 years ago
Many people over the years have stated that United get stronger around this time of the year. It could be their mentality as people suggest but it could also be down to squad rotation as you said. I have been surprised many time when I see chelsea put out their strongest team in a Carling cup game or a FA cup game. A good example would be against Leicester a few weeks ago. I have also seen Liverpool do the same thing at home vs Oldham. When I asked why were there no youth, they replied that coates and spearing were youngsters.
I have questioned why many of the team have so many players out on loan that can contribute. For example, Adebayor, Weiss, Guidetti, Santa Cruz and Bridge. They have these player on loan and then complain that the reason they are failing is because their squad is not big enough
Thebeautifulgam (Liverpool) 4 years ago
Good article. This season's not a failure for tottenham if they get fourth though
Sam6194 (Liverpool) 4 years ago
Actually I predicted that about spurs like 7-8 months ago, also I thought that they don't have enough bench strength to make the place in top 4.... (obviously chalsea was playing good, and also liverpool seemed to be on track back then)

And I really think the day chalsea are out of slump(in league) spurs won't have chance (no disrespect for them, they have really worked hard to reach the current position)but chelsea have heavy financial backup and also players will continue to come and raise the bar....

I really am skeptic about liverpool when it comes to league but we have got financial back up as well and within a season or 2 we'll start fighting for top 4....

So spurs do need to invest heavily not only to reach the top 4, but also to make sure that other star players do stay in the squad, otherwise their hard work will be in vein, they barely managed to keep modric and if in this transfer market if they loose either bale or modric it will leave behind a big void....

And when it comes to man city even after spending heavily they lack the cutting edge and finally tevez was recalled and that was definitely out of blue for mancini.... They have one of the best squad in europe.... But well they could have won the league, but anyway when it comes to beating manchester united in the league you have to make sure that you play good especially after February.... Never mind I expect them to make it hard and hard for manchester united in coming yrs....
Aufgehtsbayern (Bayern München) 4 years ago
So true, just look at what happened to Bayern. They had a huge lead then squandered it because they didn't have proper back ups. Squad rotation/deep benches is key to capturing titles these days
Hwrdprkns (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Barca rotates even less than the people you're talking about here
Otownballer (Arsenal) 4 years ago
It seems like the Premier League takes a greater toll on players than other leagues due to its frenetic pace and greater physicality, so effective squad use is even more important in England than in other leagues
KingHarryKewell (Liverpool) 4 years ago
What must be remembered in all of this is that teams like Man United and Arsenal are used to being in the Top 4 part of the table, they know what it takes, they have the mentality to be there, they often do squad rotations to meet the demands of other competitions (FA & Carling Cup, and Europe football) and they have managers who have been there done that.

For the likes of Tottenham and Man City however, being in the Top 4 is more or less a new experience, let alone being in Europe for CL/Europa. Often players have no idea of the demands and rigours that they will face with that. There's pressure to be in the Top 4 area (and therefore champions league football), pressure to perform well in Europe, pressure to get far in the local England cups (and perhaps the expectation to reach the final), and neither of these managers really has the experience or the know-how to do that properly - admittedly I speak a lot more in regards for Mancini there, not so sure about Redknapp though, although for both, Europe football will more or less be a new thing for them on top of all the domestic competitions.

It's a learning curve for both teams, and I think given a few years they'll know how to drill the sort of mentality that Man United, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool have into their players, and to plan accordingly with their squad with so many games to plan ahead for. It's doable, but it takes time I think
Ant (Liverpool) 4 years ago
The reason United have has such a strong close to the season is because they were smashed out of two European tournaments and the domestic cups early. They would normally expect to be fighting tooth and nail right into the late stages of the champions league, but as soon as they had nothing but the Premiership to fight for, they started to win every game.

You might ask - then why did Man City not behave in the same way? Well, because they are not Man United

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