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    (Original post by Mackay)
    Dembele stats this season. Christ:

    Tackles = 104 (1st in PL)
    Tackles won = 86 (1st in PL)
    Duels won = 249 (1st in PL)
    Passing accuracy = 90% (1st in PL)
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    (Original post by Stiff Little Fingers)
    No it isn't - it's blindingly obvious those four sides have just progressed to another level, the top English sides haven't got weaker, they've stayed still (with the exception of Liverpool and the Manchester clubs, but they've all taken each other's position - man city have moved up to regular title challengers (taking man uniteds place), man utd have dropped back to CL/EL border (where liverpool were) and Liverpool have become the midtable side that man city were pre-oil money, the four I've mentioned have just gotten much stronger
    It's really daft saying that PSG are superior to Atleti, but that's besides the point. Just because English sides are doing poorly, it doesn't mean the four sides you picked are that much ahead. Juventus did a tremendous job against Bayern, Barcelona and Real in the past two seasons, for instance. English clubs used to be able to compete with the biggest sides in Europe but have stagnated, creating a weaker league.

    Look at the English sides in Europe this season; Man Utd finished third in a group containing PSV and Wolfsburg.

    I'm saying it's a strong league, and the smaller sides getting closer to the top supports that.
    It just as feasibly supports the notion that the big sides are getting weaker. However when you make comparisons outside of the league i.e. to Europe, you see the English teams' failings. For whatever reason you've decided that PSG are an elite team (presumably so you can credit Citeh for beating them).

    Except they chose to rest them rather than having to. Spurs second string would still have pumped villa, but potchettino chose to focus his strongest team on the league.
    Yes, Spurs chose to rest their top players, as Pochettino was sh*tting bricks ahead of the Dortmund match. If he thought he had a chance in hell he'd have played Kane against Dortmund but didn't.

    so to establish the German league is **** since bayern coast to it, and Chelsea were only strong while they had eva. Chelsea haven't got weaker, it's the same team as last season, they simply spent half a season not playing in favour of staging a mutiny.
    Bayern conceded 17 goals all season, so they certainly didn't coast. Chelsea on the other hand had been much weaker since 2015, since the turn of that year Fabregas and Matic had given up and Ivanovic and Cahill were much weaker, with Costa not getting a regular run due to being continually banned. The only tactic they had was to sit back and not concede, while relying on Hazard do something great up front. The fact that Chelsea managed to get 87 points (which would have been more with some form of competition) with half their squad out of form should tell you that the league really isn't that good.

    Chelsea are still poor post mutiny. Fabregas has improved a bit, not back to his Aug-Dec 2014 form, but Ivanovic and Matic have been dire for a season and a half which is bot before and after the mutiny. Courtois only got poor post-mutiny and it looks like Terry's days as a top defender are over, so to say they were just as good under Hiddink as they were last season.

    It looks to be the case that you can't really accept that your team won the league because it's the third best in Europe (at best) and was particularly bad this season.
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    (Original post by bammy jastard 27)
    Yeah, AVB still had a higher points total with a team that was essentially Bale and Lloris. I don't see what Pochettino has done other than make the football more attractive to watch, really he's benefited from a weak Chelsea, United and City. Liverpool arguably should have left too.

    I also think Chelsea with no european football next season with Conte(who has done a similar job in Italy with Juve to what he has now with Chelsea and would have pull similar to the likes of Klopp, Pep, Wenger and Mourinho) is a definite title threat along with the Manchester clubs. Arsenal you'd expect to be there or thereabouts and Liverpool have Klopp so they're an unknown quantity.

    One thing's for sure. Spurs are very unlikely to make 4th next season unless there is some major investment coming in.
    I agree. Even a really mediocre manager like Martinez managed to get a far inferior Everton side to 72 points in 13/14. He's obviously not done a bad job, but as you said their 3rd place finish was largely down to others' failings. There's a good chance they wouldn't get Europe most seasons with 70 points.

    Unless Spurs splash £50m or so (and wisely not like the way Franco Baldini spunked it in 13/14), they have no chance of top four.
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    (Original post by Diego Costa)
    It's really daft saying that PSG are superior to Atleti, but that's besides the point. Just because English sides are doing poorly, it doesn't mean the four sides you picked are that much ahead. Juventus did a tremendous job against Bayern, Barcelona and Real in the past two seasons, for instance. English clubs used to be able to compete with the biggest sides in Europe but have stagnated, creating a weaker league.

    Look at the English sides in Europe this season; Man Utd finished third in a group containing PSV and Wolfsburg.



    It just as feasibly supports the notion that the big sides are getting weaker. However when you make comparisons outside of the league i.e. to Europe, you see the English teams' failings. For whatever reason you've decided that PSG are an elite team (presumably so you can credit Citeh for beating them).



    Yes, Spurs chose to rest their top players, as Pochettino was sh*tting bricks ahead of the Dortmund match. If he thought he had a chance in hell he'd have played Kane against Dortmund but didn't.



    Bayern conceded 17 goals all season, so they certainly didn't coast. Chelsea on the other hand had been much weaker since 2015, since the turn of that year Fabregas and Matic had given up and Ivanovic and Cahill were much weaker, with Costa not getting a regular run due to being continually banned. The only tactic they had was to sit back and not concede, while relying on Hazard do something great up front. The fact that Chelsea managed to get 87 points (which would have been more with some form of competition) with half their squad out of form should tell you that the league really isn't that good.

    Chelsea are still poor post mutiny. Fabregas has improved a bit, not back to his Aug-Dec 2014 form, but Ivanovic and Matic have been dire for a season and a half which is bot before and after the mutiny. Courtois only got poor post-mutiny and it looks like Terry's days as a top defender are over, so to say they were just as good under Hiddink as they were last season.

    It looks to be the case that you can't really accept that your team won the league because it's the third best in Europe (at best) and was particularly bad this season.
    PSG are an elite team - regularly into the latter stages of the champions league, win their league with absolute ease; and I cannot work out how you think that conceding on average half a goal a match means bayern didn't coast the league.

    As for the last comment, while the "Leicester only won the league because it's a poor league" crowd are ridiculous, I'd still be arguing its a strong league if we hadn't won it, because it quite evidently is - the lower sides are getting closer to the bigger sides; it's far more competitive and harder to get anywhere in because there's so few gimme games compared to a decade or so ago.

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    The quality of the bottom half teams has risen hugely in the last couple of seasons imo. We finished 10th in 13/14 despite being absolute dross, and just looking at the table now and everyone below us was absolute poverty that season. 3 clubs that year got more than Leicester's 81 points and you can see why. There's an element of the top clubs regressing as well though, and everyone's just sort of meeting in the middle.

    Spurs were the 3rd best team this season though and that's progress however you spin it.
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    I've only seen a few games this season due to a very unsocial work schedule but here goes ...

    Team: Man United

    Player of the season: David De Gea. He's the only developed, world class player in the squad and he's proved it every time I've seen him this year. Shame he's been let down by the 10 idiots in front of him

    Best Signing: Martial. Signing him is the only decent thing Van Gaal has done in his time at old trafford

    Goal of the season: Antony Martial vs Liverpool. Brilliant moment and a wonderfully taken opportunity

    Best performance: None of them, really? I enjoyed the first half of the semi final though so maybe that?

    Best moment: Uh ... probably Rashford's goal in the Manchester derby. There's always a pride in seeing a local player win you a local derby. The most memorable moment of the season though has to be Bombgate ... for all the wrong reasons!!

    Score: 5/10



    General:
    Player: Vardy
    Signing: Ranieri
    Manager: Ranieri
    Goal: Benteke vs Man United
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    (Original post by Stiff Little Fingers)
    PSG are an elite team - regularly into the latter stages of the champions league, win their league with absolute ease; and I cannot work out how you think that conceding on average half a goal a match means bayern didn't coast the league.
    PSG aren't elite. Because they win the walk in the park league every year it doesn't make them elite. Lol if you're arguing they're better than Atleti. When do they get to the latter stages of the CL? They haven't even made it to the semis post takeover. They got beaten by a Man City side containing flops like Navas and Mangala. Bayern didn't coast, they played outstandingly the entire season and Dortmund were never far behind. Chelsea on the other hand had half their team underperforming for half tje season.

    As for the last comment, while the "Leicester only won the league because it's a poor league" crowd are ridiculous, I'd still be arguing its a strong league if we hadn't won it, because it quite evidently is - the lower sides are getting closer to the bigger sides; it's far more competitive and harder to get anywhere in because there's so few gimme games compared to a decade or so ago.
    Most seasons someone would be close to 85-90 points but as the big teams flopped Leicester took advantage. THIS IS OBVIOUS! The league was obviously comparatively stronger a decade ago if you look at how far the English sides got in Europe.

    (Original post by scriggy)
    Spurs were the 3rd best team this season though and that's progress however you spin it.
    Or the teams usually above Spurs underperformed and they played at their normal level.
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    (Original post by Diego Costa)
    PSG aren't elite. Because they win the walk in the park league every year it doesn't make them elite. Lol if you're arguing they're better than Atleti. When do they get to the latter stages of the CL? They haven't even made it to the semis post takeover. They got beaten by a Man City side containing flops like Navas and Mangala. Bayern didn't coast, they played outstandingly the entire season and Dortmund were never far behind. Chelsea on the other hand had half their team underperforming for half tje season.



    Most seasons someone would be close to 85-90 points but as the big teams flopped Leicester took advantage. THIS IS OBVIOUS! The league was obviously comparatively stronger a decade ago if you look at how far the English sides got in Europe.



    Or the teams usually above Spurs underperformed and they played at their normal level.
    Yeah. I made a thread regarding this. Tactics Tim managed to get 69 points with a weaker Spurs team ffs.

    Also yeah pretty sure other than Leicester this season and United 10/11(where all the sides were ridiculously poor) no PL winning team has got below 85 points since about 2003.

    That being said, Leicester were deserved title winners and played around the level of the top PL winning teams in many of the seasons in the premier league.

    (Original post by Stiff Little Fingers)
    PSG are an elite team - regularly into the latter stages of the champions league, win their league with absolute ease; and I cannot work out how you think that conceding on average half a goal a match means bayern didn't coast the league.

    As for the last comment, while the "Leicester only won the league because it's a poor league" crowd are ridiculous, I'd still be arguing its a strong league if we hadn't won it, because it quite evidently is - the lower sides are getting closer to the bigger sides; it's far more competitive and harder to get anywhere in because there's so few gimme games compared to a decade or so ago.

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    Bayern didn't coast the league though. Dortmund (until the Schalke game which was mid april) were 5 points behind Bayern.

    Anyway it's one season and it's clear to see that the likes of United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea are not as good as they were from 2005-2009. Yes City have emerged but they are nowhere near as good as Mourinho's Chelsea(first spell) or Ronaldo's United team.
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    (Original post by bammy jastard 27)
    Yeah. I made a thread regarding this. Tactics Tim managed to get 69 points with a weaker Spurs team ffs.

    Also yeah pretty sure other than Leicester this season and United 10/11(where all the sides were ridiculously poor) no PL winning team has got below 85 points since about 2003.

    That being said, Leicester were deserved title winners and played around the level of the top PL winning teams in many of the seasons in the premier league.
    I don't rate Poch's achievements too highly either, points wise Spurs have always been around 60-70 points. I also detested the way he completely threw the tie against Dortmund to focus on a clash against the worst side to have graced the PL in about a decade.

    As for Leicester, they were the best side in the League and have probably achieved the biggest sporting accomplishment ever, but they simply wouldn't win if one or more of the "bigger" sides were turning the screw. Putting them on a par with the likes of Arsenal 03-04, Chelsea 03-06, Man Utd 06-09, etc is too hyperbolic for my liking

    Anyway it's one season and it's clear to see that the likes of United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea are not as good as they were from 2005-2009. Yes City have emerged but they are nowhere near as good as Mourinho's Chelsea(first spell) or Ronaldo's United team.
    I'd probably say that the League has been slipping since the turn of the decade. It's only now its slipped below the Bundesliga and it's the weakest it's ever been.
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    (Original post by Diego Costa)
    The league was obviously comparatively stronger a decade ago if you look at how far the English sides got in Europe.
    And here's the problem - you're acting as if the quality of a league is determined by a couple of sides. The league as a whole is stronger - hence Newcastle going down this season when their side is no worse than it was two seasons ago when they finished midtable.

    We're never going to agree when you're using an entirely different definition of quality.


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    (Original post by Stiff Little Fingers)
    And here's the problem - you're acting as if the quality of a league is determined by a couple of sides. The league as a whole is stronger - hence Newcastle going down this season when their side is no worse than it was two seasons ago when they finished midtable.

    We're never going to agree when you're using an entirely different definition of quality.


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    It's a two way thing. You're a Leicester fan but it is incredibly hard to not deny that the 'bigger sides' have been slipping in quality. Yes the weak teams are stronger(Leicester winning the prem and West Ham buying the likes of Payet and Kouyate suggests it is getting better) but that's about it.

    Newcastle went down this season because they got managed by Steve McClaren.
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    (Original post by Stiff Little Fingers)
    And here's the problem - you're acting as if the quality of a league is determined by a couple of sides. The league as a whole is stronger - hence Newcastle going down this season when their side is no worse than it was two seasons ago when they finished midtable.

    We're never going to agree when you're using an entirely different definition of quality.
    Bammy Jastard summed it up well. It's also worth noting that when Rafa was at the Toon he got 13 points from 10 games which equates to a 50 point season which is usually the barrier for a top half finish. Village idiots like Carver and McClaren sunk Newcastle not the league.

    The point you don't really get is that it's more feasible that if the top sides are doing worse in Europe and worse in the league it's more likely that they're doing worse overall, as opposed to a drastic increase in the quality of the teams in the league.
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    (Original post by Diego Costa)
    Bammy Jastard summed it up well. It's also worth noting that when Rafa was at the Toon he got 13 points from 10 games which equates to a 50 point season which is usually the barrier for a top half finish. Village idiots like Carver and McClaren sunk Newcastle not the league.

    The point you don't really get is that it's more feasible that if the top sides are doing worse in Europe and worse in the league it's more likely that they're doing worse overall, as opposed to a drastic increase in the quality of the teams in the league.
    With Benitez's points per game average, Newcastle would have finished 11th had he been in charge since August.
 
 
 
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