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laukat

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  1. Perhaps the signing of Barjonas is a message to Slater and Harkins to say 'you're now 4th and 5th choice midfielders, if you stay you won't even make the bench'? Slater is just coming into his prime as a footballer so should be playing for a club willing to build a midfield around him. I don't see that happening for him at Firhill and he really needs to be playing and it would be best for all that he moved on so wouldn't have thought he would be the most problematic to move on Harkins will struggle to pick up another wage similar to what we've given him. So I would have thought we're either paying up his contract or he's with us until his contract runs out. I think Gordon will get another chance once fit. I think he is a different type of midfielder. He's not great at getting on the ball and dictating the play as per Bannigan or Cole but he does make runs beyond the defenders that lead to goals. If he was fit you could see us play a midfield diamond as part of a 4-4-2.
  2. Perhaps Barjonas is there to fill in when Bannigan picks up his next suspension? Would be a cheaper backup than slater or harkins
  3. I can only see this making sense if he's either a defensive midfielder able to cover for MacKinnon or he's an attacking midfielder able to make runs beyond the forwards. The raith rovers fans weren't that impressed by him. I think McCall wants to play 4-3-3 or 4-4-2. At the moment he's not got a lot of wide midfielders or wingers so getting another central midfielder in suggests others are away. Harkins and Slater would be the obvious candidates to depart.
  4. Adding MacKinnon assuming he's fit enough to play most of the games should bring strength in the middle of the defence and organisation in general. It perhaps means that our fullbacks could get further forward which in turn might cover for Williamson's frailties and allow McCall to take a chance on a younger fullback as cover. In general McCall's transfer dealings have a definite strategy. We're very much going for younger Scottish players that allow for a team to be developed and perhaps for future transfer value to be obtained. Assuming Miller and Harkins leave only Fox and MacKinnon will be over 30 with pretty much all the remaining players still to hit their peak. MacKinnon looks like the midfield leader we need to get the best out of the younger ones. Such a difference to have a manager that knows what he's doing.
  5. I'd prefer to try O'Conner than Christie but if we're looking at Mayo in central defence that would mean 2 defenders that have no first team experience (assuming a back 4 and Saunders is backup) Wardrop at Dundee United has a decent amount of championship experience with Dumbarton, is surplus to requirements at Dundee United and originally from this area.
  6. Hopefully not. He's a good utility player but his positional sense at right back wasn't great and his delivery was woeful. A quick look at his playing record for Carlisle suggests he's hardly played since October. Its not clear if thats due to an ankle injury or falling out of favour after Pressley got binned.
  7. I like Slater but I don't see him getting a midfield slot ahead of Bannigan, Cole or MacKinnon. If the rumours about Barjonas coming on loan are true I think Slater will be surplus to requirements. If we are in for Alan Forest I could see him moving to Ayr as part of that. Personally I though McCall was giving Slater, Robson and Harkins a run out tonight to help them find new clubs. Perhaps that was also Miller's swansong?
  8. Celtic playing without wingers gave us a chance but the error by Robson for the first goal and Miller's miss are mistakes that you cant afford against any team. If Celtic had put forrest or Johnston up against Robson they would have run riot. Thought MacKinnon did welll and does offer protection to the defence. Rudden looked very sharp. We need a right back and a left sided central defender assuming Brian Graham appears. After that we should have a decent team.
  9. robson is the weakest link. Either Cardle or Slater for him at half time please
  10. I take it we're playing penrice in midfield? something like this Fox Saunders-O'Ware-McGinty-Robson Cole-Mackinnon-Penrice- Bannigan Rudden I've not shown Miller as formations and positions don't seem to apply to him Celtic look like they are going without wingers so will be relying on their fullbacks for width.
  11. The comparision with Dunfermline, Falkirk, Morton and Airdrie are interesting. Dunfermline has larger attendances on average than we do but is still recovering from chasing rainbows under Masterton. Which is similar to were we were after the "save the jags" season. I suspect Dunfermline will be back challenging for a spot in the SPL in about 2 or 3 seasons. Dunfermline have made 3 cup finals and played in Europe in the last 20 years so arguably the did better than us. Falkirk have comparible crowds to us and have similar ups and downs with owners. Right now they are underperforming and desperate for a new owner and chairman to take over. They would still probably be in the Championship if they hadn't experimented with importing non-league english players last season under Hartley. However Falkirk have made the Scottish Cup Final and qualified for Europe in the last 10 years. So their highs are aguably better than ours. Morton and Airdrie (current incarnation) are clubs that have less support and less financial backing than us. They are on a par with Hamilton and Livingston. However Morton have never dealt with Cappielow properly to develop the income streams that Hamilton rely on and the Hugh Scott era almost ended them so getting a benefactor like Douglas Rae wasn't enough to repair the damage caused so far. Airdrie overspent in the 90's to get to top league then went bust with a stadium thats now a white elephant and have never recovered. They could adopt a model similar to Hamilton and Livingston but it will take a long time for that to bear fruit and with crowds down its hard to see how they will be much more than a team that yoyo's between League 1 and the championship. Arguably Airdrie are more comparable to Clyde than they are to us. Personally I think there is a group of clubs outside of Rangers, Celtic, Aberdeen, Hibs, Hearts and Dundee United that we are in. That group contains Motherwell, Kilmarnock, St Johnstone, Dundee, St Mirren, Falkirk and Dunfermline. So if we are well run for a 15/20 year period we should be consitently in the top league and have the ocaissonal cup final appearance. However we have not appeared in a cup final or major European competition in nearly 50 years. All the others in the group I described have achieved that in the last 20 years or less. ICT and Ross County may in time be clubs that sit within our group but I suspect they are being financially supported beyond their true means and over the next 20 years may settle into being solid Championship clubs rather than yoyo clubs. However both of them have again appeared in a major cup final in the last 20 years and ICT have appeared in europe.
  12. Pretty much agree with that. I would be tempted to see what Gordon is like post injury and with decent players around him. His scoring record from midfield merits a chance.
  13. Could be a very good signing. We've not had a defensive midfielder since Osman started selling hats. I think Darian will match Steven Anderson's will to win and hopefully his organisational ability As long as he's fit enough we should have a player that will make others in the midfield and defence better. Nice to have a player in the squad that other players will fear
  14. Money and a benefactor should help but Dundee, Motherwell, Dundee United, Kilmarnock,Livingston (first spell in the top flight) and Hearts have had spells in recent years where money was lavished onto them but they didn't really improve their fortunes for anything more than a couple of seasons. St Johnstone have had a benefactor and some financial luck but have had success over a number of years. So there's something more than money at play in Perth. Hamilton and Livingston appear to have massively over archieved without a benefactor. Arguably both clubs should be yo-yo teams between the championship and league 1 not clubs that are premier league mainstays. So why do Hamilton, Livingston and St Johnstone survive in the top flight and St Mirren and Thistle yo-yo? I suspect part of the answer is that Hamilton and livingston with the plastic pitch have an income that reduces the earning gap between us but that doesn't explain St Johnstone. I suspect a big part of the reason Hamilton and St Johnstone have stayed much longer than us in the SPL is to do with expectations. After 4/5 season in the SPL Thistle start to think about top 6, Europe or a cup and forget that survival should be the only thing on their mind. Hamilton and Livingston have one mission every season and thats to finish 10th. 9th is probably acceptable to both those clubs but for Thistle or St Mirren 9th is a failure, 8th after 2 seasons in the SPL isn't good enough. St Johnstone have finished top 6 and won a cup but I don't think they set out to do that or expect it, they make sure they avoid 9th and the rest happens if you stay there long enough. Hamilton and Livinston don't rely on their crowds so if the play isn't nice to watch they'll cope better than at Thistle were we want to win and be entertained. Also if you look at our last 3 longest spells in the top flight under Auld, Lambie and Archie there is another lesson . Lambie left after a few seasons for Falkirk to my mind because he got bored doing the same thing at Thistle season after season. Equally Archie got stale and made a lot of mistakes towards the end of our last spell in the SPL. Auld left for a better offer. We seem to be too loyal to managers and woefully unprepared if we lose a good one. St Johnstone and Hamilton have a much better track record of mangerial appointments and a more ruthless approach if required because they have confidence that can identify a replacement. We've had almost as many owners as managers over the last 30 years and unable to keep continuity of focus in the same way that St Johnstone have under the Brown family or Hamiton have had with Ronnie MacDonald. We've been most successful when we had our best chairmen (Jim Oliver, David Beattie) but as soon as they go or lose interest we falter. Our recent Chief exec appointments have arguably valued sentimentality and loyalty over proven experience. So I think we are a yoyo club because the clubs ethos is to prioritise entertainment and loyaltly over a ruthless focus on league position and winning football games.
  15. We defintely have defensive problems mainly because of the personell available. Our rightback is more a wingback so relies on having a defensive midfielder in front of him. That worked ok until we lost Kakay. We currently rely on Bannigan and Cole playing deeper to protect the defence as we have no proper defensive midfield. We also don't have a left sided central defender so distribution on the left side is heavily dependent on Cole. On the plus side the rumoured signings are in areas that would address most of our problems by the end of the window and the potential system McCall wants to play looks like its been continued into the players we're looking at on PCA's. Hopefully by the end of the window we'll have a team that looks like the following Fox Houston(rangers loanee)-O'Ware-Mayo (rangers loanee)-Penrice Cole-MacKinnon-Bannigan Cardle Rudden-Graham Next Season might look like the follwoing if we stay in the championship: Fox New Signing-Brownlie-McCart (ICT)-Penrice Cole-Docherty-Bannigan Zanatta - Rudden- New signing
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