Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Valencia CF vs FC Barcelona Match Preview

Valencia CF got severely destroyed last match against FC Barcelona in the Copa del Rey in what was supposed to be a turnaround match for the club and coach Gary Neville. Unfortunately for him and the team FC Barcelona ran roughshot over Valencia CF scoring 3 goals in the span of 15 minutes and then going on to beat them 7-0.

Its probably one of the biggest losses Valencia CF has endured in the past several decades, after that fiasco Gary Neville's head was wanted by fans and it seemed as Real Betis would be judgement day for the inexperienced coach with a loss to Betis guaranteeing Gary's sack. That match came, Valencia CF lost and Gary survived and got the complete support of Peter Lim.

Now this match won't really count for anything, Valencia CF are for all intense and purpose out of the copa and FC Barcelona might want to rest their key players and just field a team of their B team player and give them a chance, but a loss against a B team Barcelona might frustrate fans even more, so even though technically this is a worthless game for both teams, it can cement the bad feeling for Gary Neville as a coach if he loses yet another match.

Valencia CF is also without most of its first team players for tomorrow and Gary would rely on a lot of youth players from the B team to cover, good news is that Paco Alcacer and Enzo Perez are recovering and look to be ready for the match against Espanyol who lost 5-0 at home against Real Sociedad. Espanyol are also in a relegation battle with only 22 points, something Valencia CF is close to as well. Anything but a strong and comfortable victory against Espanyol would for me mark the end of Gary Neville.

Espanyol are a terrible team this season, they've lost most of their matches and barely have several victories, having trouble winning against them would mean Valencia's team this season is complete and utter garbage.

I've read that some of the players have bad feelings because of the fans and the sort of negativity that is going around, but they need to look in the mirror and shut the hell up. They are getting paid millions of euros, some of them have arrived for 20 or 30 million euros and their contribution this season has been to frustrate everyone with piss poor playing and results.

So they need to shut the hell up, stop feeling as special little princesses playing ballet, accept their responsibility for being GARBAGE this season, accept that they are worthless nobody's right now and work at 200% percent, break their bones if they must to try and reverse this situation and start freaking playing well again!

I know that few of the players actually read this blog, I hope they read this right now and share it with the rest of the team and learn to freaking take responsibility, stop being little special princesses and start fighting for the club, start working at 200% percent, start giving everything on the pitch, comprende?

Monday, February 8, 2016

Gary Neville to remain Valencia CF coach

Valencia CF have found themselves in a big crisis since the arrival of Gary Neville as they haven't been able to win even one league game since Gary Neville took over. The team has had some success in the Copa del rey and they reached the semi final in which Valencia CF were embarrassed by a brilliant Barcelona who easily beat Valencia CF 7-0.

After the latest embarrassment a 1-0 loss to Real Betis Gary Neville position came into question, as sporting director Jesús García Pitarch suggested that the coach be removed and a new temporary solution brought in till the end of the season. The decision was then left to Valencia CF majority owner Peter Lim who decided that Gary Neville is going to stay.

In fact Peter Lim still wants Gary Neville to continue through the rest of the season and gave the impression that nothing would be able to change his mind about Gary Neville being Valencia CF coach, of course his position might easily change if Valencia CF lose the next match and actually start fighting for relegation. I'm sure playing second league isn't something even Peter Lim can accept, no matter how close friends he is with Gary Neville.

Hopefully this will teach Peter Lim a lesson to NOT run the club as a family party or something, where you just put family and friends to run things and expect good results. I'm sure he isn't running his oil and other businesses by putting friends and family in charge, but by putting qualified and experienced people to run things.

If Gary Neville loses the next La Liga match against Espanyol he should go, in fact he should resign personally and admit that he isn't ready to be first coach in a big team. Maybe if he gains more experience and coaches some small 3rd division team first he can become a quality coach, but right now he doesn't seem suited to coach a team like Valencia CF.

I don't think Gary Neville should be blamed for where Valencia CF is right now, but its clear that he isn't helping the situation and unless we get a comfortable 2-0 or 3-0 win against Espanyol I don't think he should continue as coach. Another loss and I will be calling for his resignation personally, I don't think we can afford to play with relegation at this point and we are close to fighting relegation.

Personally I didn't like Nuno to be sacked, I think he got the blame for everything that didn't went according to the Spanish fans liking and he paid the price. Sure the results weren't that great under him either and the play was poor, but we were still getting some results, we were still in the top 8 positions and just 5 or 6 points away from 4th position, now we are 20 points behind 4th position, even 5th or 6th position seem almost imposiible.

Unfortunately he got sacked and the new coach has done even worse. Everyone I know knew this was a very risky appointment and even just casual football observers questioned the move, it was one that didn't make a lot of sense, high risk and low reward type of deal. Personally I didn't really like the appointment, but remained optimistic, after all Gary Neville worked under a legend like Alex Ferguson so he knows how one of the best managers in history of football works, he's been a successful football player, defender nonetheless and he is England's assistant coach, so he did have some small experience working and training with the players.

Unfortunately all of that didn't contribute to much, while I do agree that the players must take huge portion of the blame, its the coach/manager job to get the most out of the players, to get them to the proper physical and mental level and even acquire help from a professional psychologist to work with some of the players and resolve their issues.

Ultimately for me he is on a deadline and an ultimatum, if he can't win against Espanyol at the Mestalla after working for over 7 weeks with the team it will prove that he is not the right man for the job and that its futile to continue sticking with him and magically expecting better results.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Real Betis 1-0 Valencia CF Match Report

Valencia CF coach Gary Neville decided to field the two new arrivals to the team, Siqueira and Cheryshev, so a new look on that left side, but it didn't change much in terms of play. Cheryshev did have a lot of forward runs and he always found himself in dangerous positions, but he just didn't have enough of the ball and couldn't do much when he got it. Off the ball movement was better than the movement with the ball.

Siquiera did well for the time he was on the pitch, though towards the end he left his position and allowed a dangerous chance for Real Betis, forcing his to rush and slide to cover, resulting in tearing a muscle and being replaced two minuted before the end of the first half by Jose Gaya.

Overall both teams played slow football and both teams lost the ball a lot of times. Real Betis did have the better chances though, as Ryan had a good save in the 43rd minute to keep the score level, before that Abdenoyr did have to make two tackles to clear dangerous situations.

With the type of play by Valencia CF I didn't get the feeling that we can win, the players lost the ball very often and created very little chances. There were few good tries to create chances, most of them going through Andre Gomes, but the final ball was always lacking. Feghouli did have one or two good runs, but again the final ball was lacking. His passes were not accurate enough to find a Valencia CF player in the penalty field.

Ultimately the first half ended 0-0 and neither team had created enough chances to score a goal.

Just three minutes into the second half though and Valencia's terrible defense was on show as it allowed Real Betis to score a goal from nothing. The defensive cover was so terrible by all of the players its just absurd. Ricky received the ball into the penalty area who was left unmarked, Gaya tried to mark him, but he was too late and his pass found Ruben Castro who easily slotted the ball into the net. It was a complete and utter failure of the defense where everyone failed.

Valencia CF reacted through Andre Gomes as he brought the ball forward, passed to Cheryshev who was alone and clear on goal, but instead of shooting he decided to pass to Negredo who's shot at goal was blocked. Ultimately a good chance for Valencia CF wasted, what could have been at least 1-1 ended up being nothing for Valencia CF.

After the last chance the next 15 minutes would be non eventful, especially for Valencia CF who needed to to score a goal, but it would be Real Betis with the control of the match and initiative.  Gary Neville brought on Moreno for Feghouli in order to spur something up, but the result was not what he wanted and expected, the change did not result in more attacks for Valencia CF.

The only player who was actually useful and doing something for Valencia CF was Andre Gomes, everyone else was sort of on the periphery of the match and didn't really contribute anything. Every action and every forward move for Valencia CF was started by Andre Gomes, unfortunately he did not have any other players to combine with.

This whole season and its pretty much continued under Gary Neville I have the feeling like every single player on our team is playing individually, they are not playing together as a team, its all about individual moves and plays, it never feels like an organized team with clear understanding and goal trying to finish its objective. It always feels like the players are always improvising and making stuff up as they go along.

Real Betis would score another goal in the 76th minute, but fortunately for Valencia CF the goal was disallowed and kept the hope for Valencia CF to be able to come back.

All this terrible play was frustrating the players as they couldn't muster up any decent chance or good build-up play, so they lashed out with terrible fouls and Gaya paid for his naivete in the 86th minutes when he committed a silly foul and got himself sent off. Sure the referee was terrible and was giving out yellow cards left and right seemingly even for the smallest of fouls, but Gaya should have been smarter and know to be more subtle when he fouls. Anyways he earned himself a second yellow card and automatic red to make the teams bad situation even worse.

Valencia CF did end up scoring a goal through Mustafi, but the goal was disallowed. I didn't quite see what it was disallowed for, it could have been for a foul, but who knows. Valencia CF tried as best as they could to make something towards the end, but it was too little too late and Real Betis won fair and square.

Technical details:
Real Betis: Adán, Montoya, Pezzella, Bruno, Vargas, Petros, N'Diaye, Musonda, Ceballos (Portillo, m. 70), Van Wolfswinkel (Molina, m. 63), Rubén Castro (Digard, m. 90).

Valencia CF: Ryan, Barragán, Mustafi, Abdennour, Siqueira (Gayà, m. 44), Zahibo (Santi Mina, m. 75), Parejo, André Gomes, Feghouli (Rodrigo, m. 59), Cheryshev, Negredo.

Ruben Castro 49 min. Assist Ricky van Wolfswinkel

Player Ratings:
Ryan 5.5 - Had one good save, but other than that wasn't really tested and couldn't do anything about the goal.
Barragan 5 - Terrible marking feels like he just woke up and was thrown in to play. Needs to do better defensively.
Mustafi 5.5 - Doesn't ooze confidence and never feels adequate to defend.
Abdennour 4 - Had two tackles in the first half, but then terrible positioning for the goal twice and failed to block a simple pass.
Siquiera 4.5 - Decent start, but failed at the end of the first half, resulting in getting himself injured.
Zahibo 5 - Good defensively, made few good blocks at the back, but useless in the center of the midfield and didn't contribute anything offensively.
Parejo 4.5 - Poor showing from Parejo, failed to control the midfield and his contribution ended up being basic passes with poor accuracy rate.
Gomes 5.5 - Was the only decent player on the field, started few actions and was pushing the ball forward, but didn't have anyone else to play with, no one was open to receive the ball.
Feghouli 5 - Had some decent runs forward in the first half, found himself in a good position in one particular and was completely free, but his pass in the penalty area was inaccurate and gave the ball away.
Negredo 4 - Had one good chance as he was given a good pass by Chyrishev with the goalkeeper out of his line with the goal basically empty, but his shot was blocked by a Betis defender.
Cheryshev 5 - Had some good movement off the ball and was dangerous on occasions, but unfortunately did not see the ball too much and when he did he couldn't muster up a chance.
Gaya 3 - Entered the match and quickly got himself a yellow card, was positioned poor for the Betis goal and then made a silly foul towards the end and earned himself a second yellow card.
Moreno 5 - Not very effective, got the ball few times and did have few runs, but nothing really threatning.
Mina N/A - Not enough time, but even if he had more time it didn't seem as he would change things.

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With the results being terrible Gary Neville has been given an ultimatum, he needs to win today against Real Betis if he is to stay as the manager.

I don't think fans should blame Gary or the players, I think its the circumstances. Instead of strengthening and adding depth this season, Peter Lim's naivete brought more young and inexperienced players, so now we are suffering because we can't rely on a good mix of experience and youth and have to play with inexperienced and inconsistent young players.

To make matters worse the coach to replace Nuno was Gary who is extremely inexperienced, doesn't speak Spanish and is essentially his first coaching job. So you can't blame the players or the coach. I think Peter Lim is realizing that he can't run a football club like a family, so he's hired a sporting director and he is possibly looking of adding a club president as well. He is finally realizing he can't just appoint few of his friends and run the club successfully, it needs experienced and successful people.

There is speculation that Valencia CF are talking to Rafa Benitez and he would be a great appointment for us, but if we can get Pellegrini in the summer that would be even greater. Issue is if we get rid of Gary Neville now, we have to appoint either a good coach or rely on Voro to lead the team till the end of the season, which we know he is a good interim manager for a while, but can he lead the team for months?

Anyways the match today against Real Betis will tell us what happens next. I'm sure Peter Lim would want to keep Gary Neville regardless of results, but he risks losing support of the fans as an owner and that would be really bad for him.

Friday, February 5, 2016

So Where Do We Go From Here ???

I have been busy these last few days so no time to write up about  the debacle at the Nou Camp and was hoping somebody else might do it.

I think they are all feeling the same way as I, total shock at what was on offer Wednesday night. So why was it and how did it all come about ?

I have only seen the highlights and from my point of view there are a number of glaring problems with the way we are playing.

Why do we always give the opposition wide players so much space to receive the ball, bring it under control and then attack our defence or put in a cross ?

Why did we stand around like practice cones while Barcelona played the ball around us, through us and over us at will ?

Why didn't we give our players specific responsibilities to mark certain players and stay with them wherever they went.  It didn't seem as if we did that. We seemed to just stand around watching the game go by ?

Wan't enough importance put on this game as our league position is so dire and what about next Wednesday.  Do we go out with a weakened team as the game is of no consequence apart from our pride. Will it be 7.0 again if the play their first team ?

Why did players look totally lost and seemed to have no idea what they were supposed to be doing ?
I know that there is a language problem but other people are there to translate.

I don't profess to be and expert on match tactics by the way, this is just my humble opinion.

I was at the last league match against Sporting Gijon and in my personal opinion, despite the fact we were beaten I could definitely see many signs of improvement in the team apart from the glaring misses by Negredo.

When Nevillle was appointed he had backing from a large majority of the supporters in a poll. Now it is  90%  saying he should go.  The latest news is that Rafel Benitez may step in and take over. What do we think of that.  I think he should come, if not now, then next week.

Looking at the league standings, I cannot believe how low we are now. It seems only recently we were talking about an outside chance of Champions League. Now it will be a relegation fight, that is for sure.  We are now looking at the other results of Las Palmas and Levante instead of Sevilla and Villareal.

Sunday's game at relegation threatened Real Betis is a massive game for Neville but more important a massive game for Valencia CF and it's supporters and our future.

Monday, February 1, 2016

De Paul out Cheryshev in

Rodrigo De Paul today moved on loan to Racing De Avalando of Argentina until the end of the season, it was announced today.

Is this one of the reasons his form has been a bit hit and miss and that he has been overlooked a many times.  Perhaps it was because he has missed  his home town having turned down loan options to Getafe and Levante.

Probably a good move for all involved and I am sure we all wish him the best of luck for the future.  I do not see him returning even though the loan is only till the end of the season.

The good news is that we will be strengthened by Denis Chevyshev until the end of the season.  This long talked about move is in the final stage and as I write this he is having a medical with the club.

He should give us that extra option on the left wing and with our other new signing at left back should give us some power down the left flank. Bienvenido Denis. Apologies for the Real Madrid shirt being put on the blog but he is our man now and maybe it can be changed soon

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Lucas Orban to Levante and Siquiera joins us

Lucas Orban has been transferred is to Levante until the end of this season on loan.
Good luck to you Lucas and it is a pity it did not work out here but maybe you will come back. The ever present Gaya being the main reason he was not given enough game time but hopefully he can show what he is capable of with Levante and help keep them in La Liga.  I think they have got a good player and look forward to seeing him play for them.

Guilherne Siquiera joins Valencia on loan from Athletico Madrid until June 2017.
He has had  spells with Udinese  Benfica and Granada and comes here as a left back with the intention of pushing Gaya  forward to wide left midfield.  He has been with Athletico Madrid so I would suggest he has had good training and attitude and also plenty of La Liga experience which is vital in my opinion.

There will be more tomorrow

Valencia 0 v 1 Sporting Gijon La Liga

I do not believe in god but I can only imagine that the Sporting Players go to church every Sunday without fail and are very good to their mothers.  How they won this game today should be added to one of the wonders of the world and they certainly had somebody looking over them.

Chance after chance came and went in a first half totally dominated by Valencia.  It had to be only time when we would take the lead.

Negredo and Feghouli missed more than one easy chances and we could and should have gone into the second half with 4 or 5 goals, whilst Gijon had not one half chance.  We have witnessed some frustrating games this season but nothing could compare with this. I cannot blame any particular player because it was, in my opinion a good all round performance even with Piatti and Barragan who have been taking a lot of criticism this season playing well.  During the break the supporters were discussing how it was that we were not well ahead and surely the goals would come in the second period.

Not for the first time this season the away team sensing that we were getting a bit nervy began to have a bit more of the ball after the break and then the impossible happened.  Danilo appeared to trip a Gijon player in the 49th minute, the ref awarded them a penalty and Sanabria stepped up to leave Ryan no chance.  It was cruel and we all know how cruel football can be but this was cruelty at another level.

Still 40 minutes to go and plenty of time to get the 2 goals to give us the win we deserved. Time after time chances came and went and this is a game that Negredo will never in his life forget.  If he has any sleep tonight I will be surprised as today he missed 3 or 4 chances that no professional footballer should ever miss.  I just do not know what to say about Negredo. No player ever goes out on the pitch to play badly and miss open goals or give away own goals, it is a players worst nightmare but tonight Negredo will be waking up in cold sweats no doubt.

                                                     I thought you had it,  No I thought you had it

I am writing this still wearing my scarf having just got in from the match and therefore may need to make some alterations later but my feelings are that the players really went out with a will to win and played some really good football, some of the best this season in my opinion and the scoreline does not reflect this.  However it will be seen as a disaster for the team and Neville to lose at home to such a poor side as Gijon, and they are a poor side.  My thoughts are now is that we should stay focused and look forward to the games against Barcelona because believe it or not I see signs of improvement each week.  Also lots of talk about a couple of new signings today. In my opinion they would have made no difference whatsoever today as we did not have GOD on our side that is for sure.

Player Ratings:
Ryan 6.5  No chance with the penalty and apart from that had nothing to do. He could have read a book in the first half he was so unemployed.
Barragan 6.5  Had a very good game today following his solid performance midweek against Las Palmas. Gary Neville is making a defender out of him possibly.
Abdenour 7  Showing some of his earlier season form again before his injury. now looking a lot more assured and making some great tackles. For some reason I really like this guy.
Mustafi 7  Showing again his best form and much more assured today hardly putting a foot or a head wrong.
Gaya  6.5  Getting back to his best again and linking up well with
Perez 7.5  He is the main reason the team is looking more balanced now with his tackling and bringing the ball out of defence. Proving to be worth the vast sum spent on him. Just hope he stays fit.
Gomes 6  Not one of his better games today, seemd to lose the ball to many times IMO and his passes were going astray too much.
Danilo 4  A bit of a disaster day for this guy, passes going wrong, caught out of position and then giving the penalty away. I think he is lucky with 4
Feghouli  6  Had some great runs considering he is just back from injury and will soon be back to his old self I am sure.  However today he missed some easy chances.
Piatti 6  Half decent game compared to earlier in the season, but still not strong enough. Had a great first time shot that was well saved.
Negredo 2  An absolute nightmare of a game today, missing so many open goals that it was just unbelievable.
Parejo  7  Brought some added skills to the game that were, at times missing in the first part
Bakkali 7  Caused all sorts of problems when coming on and made a number of good openings that were wasted.
Rodrigo 6.5  Had a couple of headers that were just wide.

Gary Neville 7  Put out a good strong team and used the subs well. Cannot be blamed in any way for the outcome of this. We have to remember the adulation Negredo got from many supporters when he was left out by Nuno.  Neville cannot kick the ball in the net for him, that is up to him.  Another thing is when the supporters were canvassed as to where the team needed strengthening 90% said it was midfield and only 6% said we needed a new striker.

More to come later