Liverpool banter 247620


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26 Jun 2024 12:27:17
Is it just me or is internation football at it's lowest point?

Maybe I am getting old but I grew up watching the Ronaldo (the original! ), Ronaldinho, Figo, Zidanes of the world. Players with star quality and legends of the sport.

There just seems something missing from the current crop of players. Obviously we all want to win, but above all I want to be entertained. Footballers of the past looked like they enjoyed the game, they saw it as an immense privilege to play the game we all love. Now they act is if they have just finished a shift at the local Morrisons. The players have become robots who seem scared to make a mistake due to the backlash they will get from media and fans alike. It’s turned into a chore for most of them, at least that is the impression I get

90/ 00's international football always felt like the pinnacle of the sport, the very best going toe to toe, whereas now I think the prem/ champions league quality has overtaken it. Maybe that's half the issue, teams are basically world 11's with unlimited resources (to a degree) and would beat most international teams off the park.

Agree9 Disagree1

26 Jun 2024 13:03:32
Couldn’t agree more WYred, where’s the great Dutch, Brazilians Germans ect…and it’s just not international teams, the premier league is the same also. Remember Thierry Henry, bergkamp gerrard, drogba ect…. there are zero players of any character anymore. Winning for your country used to be the pinnacle for players and watching this euros I’ve only see ally seen Austria Germany and Portugal who look like they’re playing for the country’s. Forget England, we must have some of the most overrated players in world football. For all those going we have an amazing squad and this is our best chance……the current crop are not a patch on what we’ve had the last 30 ish years.

26 Jun 2024 13:55:40
I would say the game is much more tactically oriented now, and it’s not as though there aren’t any superstars left in the game, it’s more that the coaches have become the real center of attention with how they set out to nullify the other team and try to exploit spaces in their pressing patterns and defensive structures, and create situations where their best attacking players can be isolated in mismatches to create chances. The dominance of pep positional ball in Europe of course makes things very stale, but it seems like there are either weird new variations of this kind of play (motta, Alonso, slot, nagelsmann) or entirely different ways of playing (diniz, spalletti, gasperini) .

Players are mostly part of a successful tactical system now, rather than being given free rein to do what they want. And when they do receive the license to do that, it might not turn out entirely well in regard to the success of the team and the reception of the player among fans at large, the epochal contrast between Ronaldinho and neymar for example is illustrative I think.

Of course if people are less interested in the tactical side of the game, it can seem quite dull, I mean the likes of de zerbi and conte even advocated automating patterns of play so players mechanically know what to do when any eventuality transpires.

26 Jun 2024 14:11:04
I would also argue that it's not the players who are scared, they're instructed to play that way for the most part, the dominant style of elite football in europe (that is, Pep ball), is actually quite conservative because it's rather focussed on not being caught out when you lose the ball.

This is why Klopp ball, even the newest Ljinders-ised variant, is quite different, and why there is discernibly less 'control' in and out of possession, because Klopp ball seems to me to be about playing the odds with our risky passing game and chaotic movement up front with the forwards interchanging, assuming that our passers and forwards have the quality to consistently create and finish (and for the most part, this does work) . But also, it takes the chance that we'll get caught out in transition and Virgil and Ali can mop up the mess (and for a long time, this also seemed to work) .

What I mean is that if the coach has a structure that is fundamentally risk-averse, then the players themselves will naturally be risk-averse. If you look at some of the most fun to watch teams of the last few years, take Hansi Flick's Bayern for example, they were pretty much a mess tactically but they won everything, partly because their players were so good and at the peak of their powers and could outperform an xG that was already significant, but also because players like Davies could cover a ridiculous amount of ground with record speed to bail them out when things went wrong (just like Virgil for us) and Kimmich was there frantically putting out fires as well. Flick's system was basically about betting that Bayern's players were better than the other players, and their defenders were athletic enough to rescue things when rubbish would potentially hit the fan. In that way, maybe Flick's Bayern is a kind of throwback to what you guys are nostalgic for lol.

26 Jun 2024 14:23:53
Flick relies on having the very best players. As he’s about find out, Barcelona really don’t have very many who fall under that description.

26 Jun 2024 14:38:43
I think the CL is bigger now.
And we can regularly watch the best players in the world playing in that and the European leagues that are more accessible.

26 Jun 2024 15:04:02
I just realised the original post was about international football so my whole spiel was largely nonsense on the wrong subject lol. Sorry about that.

As for international football, coaches have less time to work on tactics with players who are all drilled playing different styles for different coaches and serving different roles within those styles. For them to then have to adapt to a different way of playing in intermittent breaks without really building much rhythm is difficult to say the least, and usually the coaches just cobble something haphazard together.

That's why nations that have a lot of players playing in the same league or for the few dominant teams within that league often look a lot more organised (you would think the Netherlands would be an example of this since they are pioneers of a national style of football), or, similarly, you can have a team like Brazil that either has a Pep-like positional system that is forcibly imposed on them in an unnatural way and consequently look awkward and uncomfortable (like Dunga did), or play a more organic almost street football style that is more in keeping with what they all did growing up or playing futsal etcetera.

26 Jun 2024 15:10:17
It was a pretty poor appointment, VV, flick already proved that when he didn't have the same personnel in key positions in the German team that things were going to be a lot more difficult. Flick's Bayern were a super direct and athletic team that went upfield vertically very fast and pressed high up the pitch, maybe one can say that there are similarities with Klopp in that regard. Barcelona's DNA is pretty much the opposite of that, and they're not exactly blessed with players who run back and forth for 90 minutes or athletes in midfield, either.

26 Jun 2024 15:45:48
WYred, it's not just you. For those of us like me who grew up on watching int'l football esp. in the late 80's on to now, the standards have been deteriorating for decades now. The players just don't look fit and committed at times cos there's too much money in league footie (and esp. in CL footie, as Rigsby said) . Just look at Jude for England.

I think cos since everything is synchronised to fit the European league season, players often arrive tired or not real fit for such comps. hence, the pace is off, the lack of commitment is there and these lead to poor footie standards. Even tho there is the off comp. that is a good watch, like the last two WC tournaments WC Brazil and Russia which I enjoyed.

26 Jun 2024 17:03:43
This was my point reguarding Bellingham being the best in the world for some. There's nowhere near the quality there was years ago. You had truly worldclass players sprinkled throughout many top sides. The real Madrid team that just won the champions league isn't a patch on the Ronaldo/ alonso side. This generation of players are a level or two of the previous generation and these English players are massively overhyoed.

{Ed025's Note - or could it be that the standard of the players around them has gone up MIZER so they are not as stand out as they used to be?, just a point mate..

26 Jun 2024 17:43:41
What’s gone are the characters., the likes of Stan Bowles, Rod Marsh and the like. They had immense natural talent but also had a laugh about the game too. Football, as a game, certainly in England started to die with Sky and the Premier League. Just look at the state of the garbage in Germany - England topped the group with 5pts and scored - wait for it - one goal. as a source of entertainment, watching England is a distant s3cong to watching paint dry and the really sad thing is the Southgate doesn’t even understand what the (major) problem is.

{Ed025's Note - yeah im with you WDW, its all too serious and money orientated mate, and seriously less fun, mind you the internet doesn,t help when you get trolls abusing players and other supporters, i know i might sound like a auld arse but its not what it used to be..

26 Jun 2024 18:15:52
There's definitely less character generally amongst the players, but it's the one thing that Robbo and Nunez don't exactly lack.
International football is sterile. People who are paying hundreds for tickets are being fleeced as far as showing of quality football and entertainment goes the majority of the time.

26 Jun 2024 18:22:24
the standards have dropped. Bellingham wouldn’t take Platts place. Or the 3 golden boys ( gerrard, lampard scholes) honestly I don’t think he’d take carricks place either.

{Ed001's Note - Platt was not half the player Bellingham is, in fact he was barely half a player.}

26 Jun 2024 19:05:23
Blimey, Bellingham is 20, has just won the CL, La Liga and was the player of the year there and people are knocking him!

26 Jun 2024 19:52:30
Im with you. Before wingers went at the defenders or sprint past em, while nowadays they just pass around The ball until someone messes up or lose track. Bring back the neymar, ronaldhino type of players not just robots.

26 Jun 2024 20:34:15
@ed1: i liked platt from what I remember of him.
@Rigsby: I’m not knocking him the question was “ has the standards of international footy dropped? ” Which led to comparisons. I was comparing him.

26 Jun 2024 21:03:40
For me it a bit of a combo of all the above, world class labelled players who are just really good, standards of all players has improved and fitness levels more evenly matched than before. Much more structure and organisation to the ‘lesser’ teams. Fear of losing (esp in Eng case) rather than going for the win and you rarely see a player smile unless a goal goes in, its too business like for me. That’s why watching Ronaldinho was so good, apart from the lob of Seaman! he played with a smile on his face to go with the Extraordinary talent. Firmino did that a lot as well, played with a smile, maybe just to show off his whiter than white gnashers ?.
Also before international management was the pinnacle of a managers career- not so much anymore.
But on the glass half full side, rarely if ever, am sure someone will correct me, did a team smash qualification then go on to win a major tournament. The best teams usually start slow, players protect them selves from injury and needless bookings from tackles do just enough to get through to knock outs then play improves. Hoping this is the case for Eng and the tournament?.

{Ed025's Note - nah KNG, England are just shoite mate..

26 Jun 2024 21:11:24
I think when I were a lad, these international tournaments were the only chance we had to see the worlds best players - Socrates, Zico, Maradona, Van Basten, Platini - players from all over the world.

However, now you see them in the premier league.

There’s less excitement, less mystery. We’ve seen these players every week. The only ones we haven’t seen in the PL have been seen on satellite TV.

{Ed025's Note - fair point that Ron..

26 Jun 2024 22:03:46
I'm not sure if the overall standard of international football has gone down, but what I do know for sure is that the big gulf that used to exist between the traditional powerhouses (Brazil, Germany, Italy, France etc etc) and the rest of the World, has greatly reduced. Football is far more "democratized" than it ever was before. Further proof is that players, for example, from Africa, South America, the USA, South Korea and Japan are common place now in all the major leagues. And this accumulation of experience does rub off on their national teams.

So maybe it's not so much all of international football going down, but rather the top teams not standing out so much because the others have caught up a bit and you don't notice the greater difference any more, that there used to be in the past.

27 Jun 2024 00:29:41
I wonder if the 'coaching badges' are partially to blame. It seems to be that all coaches these days are taught the same thing.

How much of the courses is based on what the most successful teams in the past have done - Catenaccio, Total Football, Long Ball, Tippy-Tappy, Heavy Metal, High pressure, low block, Counter Attack, Wingless Wonders, Sweepers, Libero's, Dogs of War (that's for you Ed 25), Pass and Move, False 9's, 442, 433, 4231, 343, The diamond etc.

27 Jun 2024 00:52:18
Fair enough, john.
David Platt is the second best hairdresser on Coronation Street. Maria obviously takes the golden scissors but Audrey is past it, in my book.
Have a look at Platty's highlights on YouTube.

27 Jun 2024 07:02:16
I think football has become tactically over complicated at the very top. It works at club level because you have a minimum of 40 weeks a year to work on things in training and can buy 11 player to suit a specific system. At international level you just don’t have the time to perfect complex systems with inverted full backs, false 9’s, double pivots etc.

So I think the national teams with the best players trying to pull that off are struggling against teams like Austria, Georgia, Switzerland etc who are combining a simple system with hard work off the ball and one or two star players on the break when they win it back. The only time in recent years we’ve seen a national team sustain any success was when Spain had half the Barcelona team and Germany had half the Bayern Munich team. So they could just carry those tactics across and had players coached and capable to pull it off.

Just how I see it of course. I don’t think the big countries have worse players. I just think they need to get back to basics.



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