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Q: 2022/23 Moyes In or Moyes Out
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Geoff 12:18 Wed Jul 20
Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
I know I'm going to be accused of negativity but tbh I can see no positivity to date to give me any optimism about next season. I'm going back to our form in the league since we beat Chelsea 3-2 at the LS. Imo that was our last GOOD league performance. Our league form since then was , as far as results were concerned, lower mid table stuff,. In a word I think we ovcerachieved qualifying for the Europa League and did bloody well to reach the semis with what, imo, is, with one or two exceptions, a decent group of players but not a European challenging one.

I look at the squad and see players who are selected regularly, Cresswell, Dawson, Benrahma, Antonio, who wouldn't get close to a serious top 4 challenger's squad, never mind team. Imo we have one world class player and one top class international. I don't need to name them, we all know who they are.

They are supported by some very good players, Coufal, Zouma, Soucek (the 2020/21 season version), Fornals and a couple of high quality keepers. But the rest ?

And as of today the squad is weaker than last season. We lost 4 players from last season's squad and to date have brought two in, and one of those could now be ruled out for a long spell depending on the extent of his injury.

I realise there is still time for new blood to be introduced but it alll honesty , and sorry to be so pessimistic, I think we are miles behind the likes of the existing Top 4 and slso the next 2 down, Arsenal and Man United.

Newcastle, Brighton, Leicester and maybe Wolves could also push on next season, and Palace are recruiting well imo, and have a progressive young coach in Vieira.

I think we're good enough to be in a position where we don't have to worry about relegation but for the life of me I can't see any way we will be good enough to challenge for a place at the European table. Sorry, but that's the way I see it all unfolding.

Replies - Newest Posts First (Show In Chronological Order)

Sniper 2:51 Thu Aug 4
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
We ballsed up last season by having a tiny squad that was shattered by the end

We didn’t invest at all in January (even with loans) and ran out of steam

We could have come 4th, I genuinely believe that. We should have come 6th - we were 45 minutes away from that and produced a totally abject second half display that even Moyes could t defend at all (even though he was partly responsible by not changing anything early enough). Man U finishing above us on last years form was ridiculous but purely down to them having depth. Teams below us haven’t strengthened massively admittedly - Newcastle should have a better season, if Leicester don’t have half their defence injured for most of the campaign then they should too, but Villa, wolves etc haven’t done much.

However, we now have a smaller squad than last season, all the teams above us have improved and I think we’ll do incredibly well to finish 7th again. We were so lucky with injuries last season, as things stand a knock to rice or bowen will totally screw us over. Unless we get in another 4 or 5 good players, the difference between challenging for 7th and finishing 12th could be as small as injuries at the wrong time

threesixty 2:39 Thu Aug 4
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season

fair enough I see your point.
(for some reason I remember Antonio scoring only 1 goal since Jan but I suppose I'm wrong).

Maybe our form didnt change. But if thats the case then that isnt good enough to survive as others are pushing forward.

We had/do have a chance to improve our form, both now and in previous windows but have failed.
I dont understand why we are doing this.

Nagel 2:16 Thu Aug 4
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
LOL. Those stats ain't just crude, they're completely wrong.

In the league Antonio scored 6 before Xmas and 4 after. Bowen scored 3 before and 9 after. So our wide forward's scoring rate went up by 300%, not 30%, and our striker dropped by 20%, not 90%!

In any case the point I'm making is that some deluded people thought we had a chance of top 4 when we never did. It looked that way because we had easier games in the first half but we were always bound to drop off. If we'd strengthened in Jan we probably would have made Europe but in reality we just stayed the same, while clubs like Spurs improved.

threesixty 1:37 Thu Aug 4
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season

Bowen may have scored 8 goals after xmas but Antonio scored just 1 I believe.

Whereas before xmas Antonio scored 10 I think.
So the output of our main striker drops by 90% after xmas and our wide forward goes up by 30% or so.

These are crude stats but just looking at the overall decline in combined scoring by our. two main goal scorers (maybe a 60% decline?) illustrates the second half of our season I think.

If we maintained our performances we wouldn't have dropped from 4th to 7th place. So it doesnt make sense our performances were the same in the second half of the season. They clearly weren't. The final league position tells us that.

Besides the crude stats you could just see it in the actual games themselves. We struggled to score basically.
Whereas the season before, even if we went behind we always had 2 or 3 goals in us. It wasn't like we were a defensive fortress. It was that we could always score goals. Not anymore.

Nagel 1:12 Thu Aug 4
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
LOL. Fair point. Didn't hear a convincing argument against it then either though. Just, nah, it's bollocks. Our form was shit, innit. End of.

Manuel 1:04 Thu Aug 4
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
Nagel 12:59 Thu Aug 4

Christ on a bike, you're back on that again. You didn't convince anyone at the first attempt. Weird.

Nagel 12:59 Thu Aug 4
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
"The problem for us is that by the end of last season our form meant that every game was a battle."

I think all this stuff about our form and lack of goals gets overplayed a bit, at least in terms of results, and when you consider that Bowen scored just 5 goals before Xmas and 13 after.

Yes, we shouldn't have lost away to Brentford and Brighton, but we hadn't beaten them at home earlier in the season either. Same with Burnley, a draw in both ties. Arsenal, a loss in both ties. Man City we drew with, having lost the previous tie.

That just leaves losing away to Spurs, Liverpool and Chelsea, which shouldn't have been that unexpected. If we'd played them at home in the 2nd half of the season instead of the first then it's quite likely that our form would have looked to have improved later on in the season.

threesixty 12:15 Thu Aug 4
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
The problem for us is that by the end of last season our form meant that every game was a battle.

We were no longer comfortably beating teams or controlling games. We were not scoring freely and couldn't break down teams that sat back or were organised.

Since then and now, we have 1 outfield change possibly (Samacca) who probably won't start anyway.

If you stand still in the league you go backwards.
Everyone of our competition is strengthening and has better form pre-season. Arsenal look crazy now. Not to mention Newcastle etc..

I cant see what the plan is. Its like Moyes has got more and more blinded to the issues the team has had for ages. Its depressing really.
I hope I'm wrong, but It's hard to see positives without getting new players in that allow us to change our performances.

goose 10:08 Thu Aug 4
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
I’m gonna revise my expectations downward and say (as we are) we’ll do well to finish top half.

Our form post Christmas was poor, realistically have we improved on that team?
New centre back is out till Xmas? New centre forward is somewhat unproven.

Fingers crossed I’m wrong but I think we’ll struggle as we are.
Next few weeks of the window are key.

GoalLazio 4:29 Wed Aug 3
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
Just had a chat with Stan Lazaridis - reckons we are going on a cup run. Nice one Stan

zico 1:42 Wed Aug 3
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
Saw Gonzo interviewing Tony Cottee and TC made a good point re the World Cup. The top sides will have a fair few players going and some of them may progress well into the tournament keeping their match fitness. However others such as West Ham may only have a handful going so what do the ones that are staying at home do? Obviously they will continue to train and maybe there will be some friendlies with other clubs in the same boat but there won't be any competitive matches for six weeks or so to keep full match fitness up.

CryBabies 12:05 Wed Aug 3
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
I think Moyes has on 2 occasions put all his eggs in 1 basket - Lingard and Broja. I'm not sure if we can blame the board, because Moyes is known for dawdling over transfers. He did it at Man U, and he's doing it here. Yes, we got some decent signings, but we had some awful ones too. He needs to take a leap of faith with some transfer options.

Kidders 12:03 Wed Aug 3
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
Top 8 finish

Win a domestic cup

And deffo win this conference thingy

RM10 11:59 Tue Aug 2
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
Who do you think have the momentum to get 7th

Jasnik 10:45 Tue Aug 2
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
getting into the top 10 will be a big ask this year.

Last year we had a great preseason off of a end of season after just escaping relegation. That momentum is not there this season, as we tailed off at the end of last season. And this preseason has not reached the same highs.

Sir Alf 7:10 Tue Aug 2
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
8th to 11th seems realistic.

Worst case is we could slip back to mid-table if we cannot get in 3 or 4 better players to add to the 3 we have got so far.

We overachieved first season on Moyes return and the COVID / no crowd helped on away trips especially. Last season we started well without any notable additions other than Zouma ( Vlasic didnt work out ) and this season we have only Aguerd and Scamacca who could make a difference ( Downes not really yet IMO ). Cresswell is fading fast, Benrahma consistently inconsistent, Antonio lost the plot in front of goal etc. and some others like Soucek and Bowen now known to the Prem and will find it harder.

As mentioned, my head and basic logic suggests we will likely slip unless we get another 3 or 4 in that are better than we have and fast.

All that said, I have always thought Moyes should be given 5 or 6 years as there would likely be a slip or two along the way to establishing a squad that regularly finishes top half. We have done it 2 seasons on the trot, That aint "regularly" yet.

As always, hope to be proved wrong and next 4 weeks will be critical. In all this I think this Onana is key assuming he lives up to his YouTube montage and potential.

At this juncture, not relishing the new season and especially the opening games but hoping that will change very soon/

Tomshardware 2:19 Tue Aug 2
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
A lot will depend on how well Scamacca does but if he's as good as we are hoping then I don't see why we can't achieve top 6.

Russ of the BML 2:05 Tue Aug 2
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
Rossal 1:01 Tue Aug 2

Good post.

Rossal 1:16 Tue Aug 2
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
Yep again cant argue....we seemed to massivly get away with it last season. Fresh start this season to ensure we go in fully equipped and not at risk and nope..... same ol West Ham

Lee Trundle 1:03 Tue Aug 2
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season
I'd agree with all of that, Rossal, apart from I'd say our dealings in the past 2-3 transfer windows have really cost us, instead of the last few weeks.

Rossal 1:01 Tue Aug 2
Re: Realistic Aspirations For Next Season

- Kept Rice and Bowen
- Added striker
- Good manager and coaching staff
- Europa Conference should allow us to play more kids than the EL, putting less strain on the squad
- Teams in bottom half don't seem to have strengthened much


- Squad is arguably thinner than last season
- Left back is a weakness
- Starting 11 is no stronger than last season
- Lack of signings
- Jam packed fixture list till xmas will push squad quite hard
- Few injuries away from a shit team/squad
- Newcastle Spurs and Arsenal all look to be much stronger than last season

I think 8th at best, think we will be 8-11th if we have a few injuries as usual. Our dealings in the transfer window these past 2-3 weeks have really cost us. If we had another 3/4 in the door and ready to go there would be optimism. But with so many games coming up and amazingly our squad looking even thinner than last season I am more pessimistic than optimistic at the moment.

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