Do we miss dominating games (in possession)?

Discussion in 'Manchester United Forum' started by andersj, Mar 7, 2019.

  1. Mar 8, 2019
    #81

    crossy1686 Full Member

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    Who gives a feck about giving the opposition an extra 10% - 20% possession per game? As long as we win it's not even a problem.

    What it's worth remembering also is that most of that extra possession is in and around their own area/half way line because they're scared of giving us the ball because they know we'll score.

    This possession = domination and trophies is just absolute bollocks.
  2. Mar 8, 2019
    #82

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    It would be like if I mentioned Pulis or Big Sam anytime counter-attacking football was mentioned.
  3. Mar 8, 2019
    #83

    Siorac Full Member

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    Yes, we need to improve our ball retention against the better sides. Better movement and players with higher levels of technical ability are needed. Of our midfielders, only Pogba is even close to being as comfortable on the ball as, say, Verratti or Busquets. This doesn't mean we have to play a possession-oriented style at all, we just need to improve at holding on to the ball when that's necessary.
  4. Mar 8, 2019
    #84

    kouroux 45k posts to finally achieve this tagline

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  5. Mar 8, 2019
    #85

    Ramshock CAF Pilib De Brún Translator

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  6. Mar 8, 2019
    #86

    CassiusClaymore Is it Gaizka Mendieta? Scout

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    I'd rather focus on chance creation than possession. Not saying the two are mutually exclusive but it's a given that you will sacrifice possession a lot more if you're trying things in the attacking third.

    You can see that Ole has come in with a clear agenda to allow the players to express themselves, something they weren't allowed to do under the last 2 managers.

    And people are correct that we don't have a Carrick/Scholes type player at the club right now. Maybe this is something we'll look at in the summer although nobody springs to mind.
  7. Mar 8, 2019
    #87

    R77 Full Member

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    The emphasis is on getting the ball, playing it forward and putting it in the net as quickly and directly as possible. Lose possesion? Win it back and start again. A big part of the positive psychology of Ole's tenure is that the players don't need to fear losing the ball in many situations as long as the above applies.

    That doesn't necessarily mean not dominating possesion. Sometimes we will, sometimes we won't. Depends on the game and how the opposition handle it. Ole's also very pragmatic, certain games and situations we obviously may approach differently.

    I'd rather we concentrate primarily on attacking and scoring goals rather than keeping possesion. The two don't necessarily go hand in hand.
  8. Mar 8, 2019
    #88

    MikeKing Full Member

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    Great post. I'm a fan of possession still, but over the last few years I've come to realise what you are saying here is true. I don't want us to have a situation where we are winning and attacking, and fans complain because they sometimes get nervous if we don't have the ball. The great thing with focusing on our attack primarily before midfield control is even if we go behind, our attitude is to go get the goal, not to control the match with a goal behind. If we get the first goal, we can try to keep possession but if the other team opens up and go forward more, we sit back and use the counter attacking style with quick transitions to expose them to get the second goal.
  9. Mar 8, 2019
    #89

    fergieisold Full Member

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    Do you have the stats? Be interested to see. From my point of view United can't continue to have so little possession against top sides. I'm not saying we have to have 60/70% possession but closer to 50% would be a start!
  10. Mar 8, 2019
    #90

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    This is wrong. But let's pretend that it isn't.

    They also performed horrendously in the league over that time frame. The current league champions in each top 5 league are teams that are very good at counter attacking, but even better at forcing the initiative when needed, against teams of equal or better quality. At least, all of them except Juventus.

    So if Real's approach is something to be modeled (it's not), then the approach of 4 out of 5 teams in Europe is an even better standard to aim for.
  11. Mar 8, 2019
    #91

    ghagua Full Member

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    Yes. Love the results, hate the way we play against top teams.
  12. Mar 8, 2019
    #92

    Tony247 Full Member

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    It will come back to us. There is nothing Ole can do in 3 months. With previous managers we tried dominating possesion without winning games, then we tried dominating games without winning possession, this time both will come to us in a year.
  13. Mar 8, 2019
    #93

    Darlington Padgett New Member

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    I remember against Bayern, Barcelona they had 40% and against psg it was 50/50. I think possession is important too but we've had a bunch of injuries and our squad is probably not the best in europe so that might be the best way to play atm. With a good preseason and a couple of key players we might start dominating games in that aspect too.
  14. Mar 8, 2019
    #94

    Tony247 Full Member

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    One of the virtue of direct forward attacking football is you don't get too much possession. There are not many lateral or back passes, back and forth between players. That just increases number of passess and accuracy but doesn't yield dominance. Once we start intimidating teams they will automatically start sitting back and we will enjoy possession around their box more. That is what matters. Otherwise I don't give much value to keeping possession in own half or in midfield.
  15. Mar 8, 2019
    #95

    RasTiaGba New Member

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    I don't at all.

    We're really strong at counter attacking.

    Any team we ever play against, even a Barcelona or Juventus, would have to bear that in mind.

    We can use this to our strengths and use it to beat clubs like Chelsea and Arsenal.

    We can still play a more possession attacking and win v the Fulhams, Southamptons etc. of the league. As the stats show.

    Arsenal and Swansea tried to play possession every game and look what happened to them.
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2019
  16. Mar 8, 2019
    #96

    wolvored Full Member

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    we wont keep winning against the big teams with 30 odd% possession and 4 shots on goal. I expect over the next couple of seasons Ole and the gang to develop our play with better possession and more goal scoring chances. Obviously this will entail bringing in more skillful players than some what we have already, whether bought in or from the youth.
  17. Mar 8, 2019
    #97

    Brightonian Full Member

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    Not massively, no. I don't hear anyone clamouring for LVG to come back.

    Obviously having as little possession as we did against PSG isn't a long term plan but our entire midfield was missing, so it was inevitable.

    I'd be happy for us to aim to have between 40% and 55% possession in every game, depending on the opposition. Obviously against weaker teams there's no use expecting to have less of the ball, but it's worth upping the ambition of your passing if you're getting above 60% otherwise you risk falling into the meaningless passing around the box trap. Likewise even against very possession-oriented opposition like City you don't want to have much less than 40% or you won't have enough of the ball to counter effectively and keep your territory under control.
  18. Mar 8, 2019
    #98

    RepardReece Full Member

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    Nope. Possession stats alone shows how good tactically OGS and the crew has been.

    I'm enjoying watching football again under Ole.
  19. Mar 8, 2019
    #99

    OnlyTwoDaSilvas Gullible

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    I'm not a huge fan of it. I think when you try to dominate the ball and not let the other team have a sniff, you end up pegging them back, the defence becomes congested and it's tough to break down. A good example is the Bournemouth vs City game. Wasn't it something like 80% possession and Bournemouth had zero shots on goal? City won 0-1 and it was a scruffy goal. They struggled to get through.

    You need to let the other team have some of the ball, draw them out to allow space to appear, then start to press and force them into making mistakes. If you win the ball back there, there's space to attack and you catch them back pedaling. Counter attacking is much better and more exciting to watch.
  20. Mar 9, 2019

    John Blund Full Member

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    Under LVG we had the ball +60-70%, but the opposition had a chance every time they were on to the ball. I rather see us making 20-30 chances each game than see us passing the ball between our CBs.
  21. Mar 9, 2019

    breakout67 Full Member

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    Some United fans live in cuckoo land. SAF is the finest counter attacking manager in the history of the game (and finest manager period). He didn't need to consult a mathematician when attacking like Guardiola does. His attacking was simple yet extremely effective in possession, have flair players that can beat a man and get runners into the box to attack the ball. The way some of you talk about United, it's like we are Ajax or Barcelona.
  22. Mar 12, 2019

    Walters_19_MuFc Full Member

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    Hope you watched Athletico's performance tonight.

    Not only were they shite in possession, they had no shots on target.
  23. Mar 12, 2019

    Tomuś Nani is crap, I tell you!

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    I'm in the minority perhaps, prefer us having 30 something with some brilliantly executed counters to possession.
  24. Mar 12, 2019

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    I did. I am sure Simeone is disgusted with their performance tonight as well, if that's what you wanted to know
  25. Mar 13, 2019

    Zed 101 Full Member

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    Having the majority of the possession is not the issue that is just a stat for the end of the game, and sometimes you do not want possession it is beneficial to let the other team come forward to open up their defence, what we do need is the ability to keep possession for 5 minutes at crucial times when we are under the cosh to take the sting out of the oppossition, ball rentention especially after turning over possession needs to be better, at least 5 passes not the 2-3 happening a lot of the time
  26. Mar 13, 2019

    deafepl Full Member

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    I am sure Simeone would be happy with that performance if it went another way despite having zero shot on target.
  27. Mar 13, 2019

    wolvored Full Member

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    I agree. We need a balance of being able to play out of trouble from the back by holding onto the ball better. Still see in some games 10 men behind the ball and no outlet, so we hoof it back to the other side.
  28. Mar 13, 2019

    Walters_19_MuFc Full Member

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    I did. Not only were they awful defensively, they created feck all.
  29. Mar 14, 2019

    ghagua Full Member

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    Sometimes it will work defending all game, but top teams who are winning trophies constantly dominate other teams with possession.
  30. Mar 14, 2019

    ash_86 Full Member

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    I don't care about possession stats. We had more of the ball against Arsenal and result ended up 0-2 . What's the point? I love our blitz counter attack under Ole.
  31. Mar 14, 2019

    LingiBW New Member

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    We need a mixture of possession and counter attacking ability, i.e., better control regardless of opposition.

    As man utd, we shouldn't ever find ourselves chasing our pwn shadow dancing to the tune of another team but at the same time we shpuld never just have meaningless passes between players for the sake of it.

    We ought to be comfortable with the idea of being able to control proceedings esp when we come under attack. Having a measure of control eases any pressure another team can build against us, but not being able to control a match by constantly giving the ball back to the opposition is and never will work long term.

    45%-55% regardless of who we play should be ideal with an emphasis of dictating how the match is played.
  32. Mar 16, 2019

    spiriticon Full Member

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    So there you go. 61% possession vs Wolves and look at what happens.

    The spirit of Van Gaal returns.
  33. Mar 16, 2019

    Walters_19_MuFc Full Member

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    Possession means feck all, especially when you dont do anything with it.
  34. Mar 16, 2019

    Eddy_JukeZ Full Member

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    No one asked for sterile possession to be fair.
  35. Mar 16, 2019

    MikeKing Full Member

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    Better to not ask questions.

    I think we should go for whatever team and tactic deemed purposeful for winning a game of football, and I think Ole has learned that from the cup game against Wolves. We should attack with purpose and with numbers and defend with numbers. If we do meet a team we want to "dominate" make sure to score the first goal then have a laugh passing the ball around. We are not better than Spurs and City and they both had similar performances against Wolves. The lesson being: Getting cocky and complacent about doing "us" and dominate a game with possession doesn't matter if your instincts is off.
  36. Mar 16, 2019

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    No one is asking for sterile possession.

    But it is a valid question to ask what we do when teams set up to give us possession. Do we have a strategy for not relying on space and counters to score?
  37. Mar 16, 2019

    MikeKing Full Member

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    They did not give us possession, we worked hard to get it and keep it, but they defended well and were quick to press and cut out obvious passing lanes. We would have to risk giving up possession to create more chances by taking more risks. Which we didn't because we wanted to keep possession. It is the crutch of that philosophy and we've seen it with Van Gaal and Mourinho. One of the things that charmed me with Ole was that he played to our strengths, not to some idea or philosophy about the modern game and statistics about other top teams possession charts.
  38. Mar 16, 2019

    Suvvernmanc Full Member

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    This is something we dont do well enough at all IMO. We play with a great deal of quality on the counter attack and are playing some great one-twos in and around the box, and our creativity from the midfield with Pogba has been exceptional at times since Ole came in but our inability to keep possession is our weakness.

    Our possession % is good but tonight it was negative possession. To have possession when teams are playing on the counter like tonight, we need to keep the ball and slow them down, and then our possession needs to be positive (building up attacks while keeping hold of the ball.)

    We dont do this well at all. Matic is too immobile, our back up midfielders are poor in possession as well. Our defenders are all good defenders but but they are not ball playing CBs. To keep the ball we need better than smalling in this aspect. Martial, Rashford and our other attackers are the type to feed off of through balls and creative movement, but that's not happening enough because of our midfield problems. We need players to come in to help the situation for sure.

    (Still love Ole)
  39. Mar 16, 2019

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    I don't understand this.
  40. Mar 16, 2019

    MikeKing Full Member

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    That is all hypothetical. Matic was central to us keeping possession as well as we did, he was also one of few who tried to create something and move it forward at times. Smalling didn't lose the ball when in possession, he had good passes with speed on them and had a couple of through balls, and won the ball to keep possession a few times. Both contributed to positive possession so weird to single them out today as something to change to archive better results from this tactic. None of those things was reasons for the loss and why our attackers couldn't work anything in the pockets of the game. Pogba, Rashford and Lingard were horrible in their respective roles but I do agree it is a midfield thing too as you said.