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Sunday, August 13, 2006

Pre-Season Analysis

With nothing to do but sweat profusely on a Spanish August afternoon, thought I'd do a Colin Cameron impression and see exactly what Monica' s been doing these last few weeks. In Spain every season they go into minuscule detail on every game played ( especially pre-season ) and let everyone know how many minutes a player has played so I decided to play the numbers game with Charlton's pre-season to see if I could fathom out what Monica is going to present us with on Saturday at Upton Park (ignoring any last minute additions of course).

So with 7 games played (W2 D2 L3 F12 A12 - scorers - Walker 3, Hasselbaink 3, Marcus Bent 1, Sorondo 1, Hughes 1, Ambrose 1, El Karkouri 1 and Youga 1) the details are below:

Goalkeepers

Myhre 270,
Anderson180
Randolph 180
Charlton had talks with Andreas Isaksson but he wanted a "bigger club" and there has been rumours about Robert Green of Norwich but at the moment the Number 1 slot is still vacant and it seems that Myhre is going to be first choice.


Defenders
Young 405
Hreidarsson 405
Ashton 360
El Karkouri 328
Walton 305
Fortune 301
Youga 215
Sorondo 136
Traore 45
As can be seen from the numbers, with the exception of Traore taking over at left-back from Ashton, the preferred back-four at the moment seems clear-cut, Young, El Karkouri, Hreidarsson, Traore.

Midfield
Holland 347
Rommedahl 337
Hughes 337
Sam 302
Euell 223
Ambrose 210
Kishishev 206
John 180
Farinos 180
Bolanos 173
Thomas 59
Faye 45
Midfield - there's a few surprises here. Most people assumed that the first to go under the new management would be the duo of Holland and Hughes. Well, not so. Holland has amassed more time on the pitch than any other midfielder. In fact, only Young, Hreidarsson and Ashton has played more in pre-season. While it's expected that Faye will walk into the team, it is debatable who he's going to replace. My guess is it wouldn't be Holland or Hughes, who both partnered Faye during the second half in Utrecht on friday. Our away midfield, assuming we play with only one wide player, looks like being Holland, Hughes and Faye with either Bolanos or Thomas on the left or Rommedahl on the right.

Strikers
Hasselbaink 334
Walker 244
Marcus Bent 215
Darren Bent 145
Gislason 61
Lisbie 57
Fofana 45
Dja Djedje 45
Diomande 26
Carvill 19
Tanska 10
The attack will be Hasselbaink and Darren Bent in a 4-4-2 although Jimmy-Floyd's 34 years may become a factor when we hit 2 games a week mode. There's been no experiment with any other formation except for 45 minutes when Hasselbaink played up front on his own. Monica's bent is obviously to play with 2 strikers and with Hasselbaink and Darren Bent available who can blame him. of the alternatives, Walker's been hitting in the goals and has amassed more minutes played than Marcus Bent and Monica has said that he has much to offer and there's even rumours of a rejuvenanted Lisbie frightening defences (!).

So prediction via West Ham - Myrhe, Young, El Karkouri, Hreidarsson, Traore, Holland, Hughes, Faye, Rommedahl, Hasselbaink and Darren Bent.
Subs: Anderson, Ashton, Sorondo, Marcus Bent, Bolanos

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