How good is Tomas Soucek?

Pogue Mahone

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I’ve been properly caught up in the Declan Rice bandwagon and assumed West Ham would fall apart in his absence. Which hasn’t happened at all. Should Soucek be getting more credit? I’ve paid a bit more attention to him in West Ham’s last few games and his passing is very accurate and consistent. Which is not something I would have associated with him, despite all his other obvious qualities.

Is he someone bigger clubs should be looking at? Are MUFC targetting the wrong West Ham CM? Would Soucek be a much better value option?
 

VP89

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I like him, he's a very good physical asset in the team and looks fine/in control when he has possession.
 

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Isn’t he more of a CM/box to box than a pure DM? Admittedly also haven’t seen much of him outside a handful of matches.
 

Mickeza

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He’s quite old isn’t he? 28!? Think I looked him up a few months ago when I had the exact same thought! They have dropped a bit since Rice - lost 2 in 4 I think.

On another note I really think injuries aside Antonio would have been a very good footballer.
 

DWelbz19

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Definitely not a Matic replacement. He’s not a sitter, nor can he pass the ball well. It seems lazy but he really does seem like Fellaini is a good comparison. He’s insane in the air, scores a lot, and is at his best roaming forward.

I’m sure the stat nerds can attest to that (or dispute it). But Rice does most of the defensive work in that side.
 
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Isn’t he more of a CM/box to box than a pure DM? Admittedly also haven’t seen much of him outside a handful of matches.
He’s definitely not a DM. If we played 6 with 2 8s in front of him he’d be exposed badly.

He’s quite old isn’t he? 28!? Think I looked him up a few months ago when I had the exact same thought! They have dropped a bit since Rice - lost 2 in 4 I think.

On another note I really think injuries aside Antonio would have been a very good footballer.
Thanks for indirectly calling me old :(
 

Walters_19_MuFc

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He's a good player but I wouldn't say you've been caught up in the Rice bandwagon at all. Both have been very good. West Ham have been very good.

I think the good thing for West Ham has been that when they have lost players, they haven't been affected too much, and that's credit to Moyes, who has created that solid unit.

As for whether MUFC are targeting the wrong centre midfielder, we're definitely not.

Rice is a defensive midfielder, whereas Soucek is a box to box midfielder.

We have Pogba, McTominay and Fred who are all box to box midfielders. Adding another one to our team would be crazy but I do think he's a good player.
 

Pogue Mahone

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He's a good player but I wouldn't say you've been caught up in the Rice bandwagon at all. Both have been very good. West Ham have been very good.

I think the good thing for West Ham has been that when they have lost players, they haven't been affected too much, and that's credit to Moyes, who has created that solid unit.

As for whether MUFC are targeting the wrong centre midfielder, we're definitely not.

Rice is a defensive midfielder, whereas Soucek is a box to box midfielder.

We have Pogba, McTominay and Fred who are all box to box midfielders. Adding another one to our team would be crazy but I do think he's a good player.
Rice has made plenty of box to box runs this season. And who’s anchoring midfield for West Ham in his absence?
 

Mickeza

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Just turned 26 a couple of months ago.
Fair enough! His pass completion is pretty low at 75% - Fred at about 87% drives this forum nuts so not sure that’d work. He’s never seemed especially expansive with his passing so that completion is pretty low.

You can do a good comparison between him and Rice here: https://www.whoscored.com/PlayerComparison
 

Walters_19_MuFc

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Rice has made plenty of box to box runs this season. And who’s anchoring midfield for West Ham in his absence?
He certainly has made box-to-box runs and in a 4231, you always want your midfield working in tandem. However, traditionally, you will always have a more defensive-minded midfielder and on this occasion, it's Declan Rice. You only have to look at his average positions this season. Keane and Scholes were the same. Both got forward but Keane was the more defensive-minded and Scholes had a bit more license to go forward. That's how I'd describe Rice and Soucek.

In regards to who's anchoring West Ham's midfield in his absence, Moyes has been playing with Soucek and Noble sitting. He's gone with Lanzini tonight. I can bet my bottom dollar that he'll be wanting to buy someone next season who is more defensively sound than Noble and Lanzini, though.
 

Walters_19_MuFc

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Fair enough! His pass completion is pretty low at 75% - Fred at about 87% drives this forum nuts so not sure that’d work. He’s never seemed especially expansive with his passing so that completion is pretty low.

You can do a good comparison between him and Rice here: https://www.whoscored.com/PlayerComparison
He also passes a lot less on average than Fred and Rice. He doesn't get involved in the build-up much at all because he's told to get into the box. We need the opposite.
 

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If Moyes had used Fellaini the same way he may not have been sacked at United. No we don't have to buy him but he is better than Fred or McTominay in doing what he is doing for West Ham. But we don't need him.
 

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Yeah, the Fellaini comparisons are quite apt in many ways. Different players, but seem to have the same positives for their teams at that level. Physical, great in the air, Fellaini used to come up with a few goals for Everton, though Soucek has more of a knack of being where he needs to in the box.

I don't think we should be looking at Soucek at all though. We need a lot more fluidity. Rice is a very good option, better passing range, more composed, and still progressing.
 

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He's done surprisingly well but I don't see him at a top club, nevermind ourselves. I don't know how you fit him in as anything but an occasional-use squad player or sub. He doesn't seem to offer all that much on the ball. If he is given complete license or you have effective set piece takers he becomes useful, but most top teams are not going to sacrifice to the extent needed to cover Soucek's runs forward and passing ability just for his aerial threat. I don't think that's enough, his overall ability looks quite ordinary.

Aside from the stylistic comparison it's also got a touch of the Fellaini about it in that he was far more useful to the selling club than he could ever be anywhere else and there's probably not much value in it as we're talking about a premier league player at a club not desperate to sell a key player.
 

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Since Rice has been sidelined, he and the whole westham find the difficulty from what I saw. He is seldom able to approach the opponent’s box.
Tonight, Lanzini was his partner and they worked pretty well. It actually demonstrates why two completely different types of players can complement each other. In this case, Lanzini has great ball control and Soucek has physical present. But Lanzini faded away in the second half with the game going on, when Burnley tried to press and ping Westham to their half. But the space is there to take, westham has many counter attacks. They looked tired though and were not able to score more.
 

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When I did all the midfield stats a few months ago, it actually stunned me how badly Soucek came out of them. He was basically the worst out of the 26 PL midfielders I checked by a very long way, being one of the worst, if not the worst, in every major midfield statistic. Statistically all he really did was score a good amount of goals and win a lot of headers.

Worst total amount of passes
Worst passing accuracy
Worst at total passing distance
Worst at forward passing distance
2nd worst for actions leading to a shot
4th worst for key passes
4th worst expected assists
4th worst at defensive actions

Because of Lingard being there and our links to Rice I watched a few games after doing these stats, and Soucek had come out of them so badly that I also took note of what he was doing. Maybe I just caught some bad games (although it did agree with the stats) but he was poor. The comparison to Fellaini is probably a decent one. Somebody who can make some noteworthy contributions, but he doesn't actually do any of the basic most important things you want your midfield doing. Or at least that was how he was playing then; I haven't watched them play for the last month or two.

The thread I made with the actual stats for anyone who wants to read them: https://www.redcafe.net/threads/midfield-creativity-stats-and-comparisons.460870/ Obviously a few months old now.
 
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UNITED ACADEMY

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Imagine Fellaini without world class chest control but less clumsy. That's Soucek.
 

Deery

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Don’t know I think he’s a quality player whenever I watch him a real drive and desire about the pitch and I don’t think he’s anything like Fellaini.
 

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Good. But probably not good enough to play regularly at a level any higher than he currently he is. The Fellaini comparison is an obvious one but even then, Fellaini was a much better player for Everton and often undervalued (so much so that those who liked him would praise him for passing the ball in a straight line here and there; as if this was all he was capable of). Fellaini is/was more reliable on the ball than Soucek and a better passer.
 

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Good. But probably not good enough to play regularly at a level any higher than he currently he is. The Fellaini comparison is an obvious one but even then, Fellaini was a much better player for Everton and often undervalued (so much so that those who liked him would praise him for passing the ball in a straight line here and there; as if this was all he was capable of). Fellaini is/was more reliable on the ball than Soucek and a better passer.
Agree. Fellaini was a better player in just about every area
 

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Agree. Fellaini was a better player in just about every area
That's a nonsense, more like other way around. Fellaini also played as CAM - a main attacking threat, Souček has similar goal numbers from a CM/CDM only to arrive to box later, with some crazy defensive stats too. Much better tackler and certainly better passer - which is also an attribute which will leave him out of a very top transfer but if Fellaini could have a role at Manchester United Souček certainly would be an upgrade, style wise. Also much better header of the ball, easily one of the best in the premier league in the modern history in that area: Only this round he won 17 aerial duels alone! Yesterday only three teams altogether won more. Obviously a matter of style again but his timing is incredible. Fellaini was tall and had a good chest control but his timing was absolutely woeful, other than that season before he came to us he was never any close to that and again played as the main attacking threat. It would be better to compare him to Bruno in that sense. Souček scores 15 goals per season from a CDM/CM regularly ;-) but yeah Fellaini is better :houllier:quite clearly didn't see him play regularly.

On top of that Souček runs the most KMs in the premier league too, or was topping the chart last time I checked. Fellaini could dream of that stat.
He's also a leading figure and has top mentality to take it to another level imo, he's similar developer as Jamie Vardy.

And lastly he's probably not the best fit for United because his passing is probably just not good enough for what we need now but he's their player of the season and I certainly seen players at United which made a great career with less technical ability so I think he would be valuable asset to any team, but too expensive for a top club to be 30-35 match a season player but also not surprised Bayern links are coming regularly.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/f...uels-won-Premier-League-player-season-17.html
 

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When I did all the midfield stats a few months ago, it actually stunned me how badly Soucek came out of them. He was basically the worst out of the 26 PL midfielders I checked by a very long way, being one of the worst, if not the worst, in every major midfield statistic. Statistically all he really did was score a good amount of goals and win a lot of headers.

Worst total amount of passes
Worst passing accuracy
Worst at total passing distance
Worst at forward passing distance
2nd worst for actions leading to a shot
4th worst for key passes
4th worst expected assists
4th worst at defensive actions

Because of Lingard being there and our links to Rice I watched a few games after doing these stats, and Soucek had come out of them so badly that I also took note of what he was doing. Maybe I just caught some bad games (although it did agree with the stats) but he was poor. The comparison to Fellaini is probably a decent one. Somebody who can make some noteworthy contributions, but he doesn't actually do any of the basic most important things you want your midfield doing. Or at least that was how he was playing then; I haven't watched them play for the last month or two.

The thread I made with the actual stats for anyone who wants to read them: https://www.redcafe.net/threads/midfield-creativity-stats-and-comparisons.460870/ Obviously a few months old now.
And what are the major midfield statistics

The most KMs in the premier league
The most aerial duels won in the premier league
Same number of tackles and clearances and tackles as Declan
The most goals from CM/CDM remember, and he didn't score just headers, he scored some nice goals with his foot too, same as McTominay

Yeah the passing stats not the best we can tell, but it's not his play style, Messi really can't win any aerial duels to score many himself right?
Passing is by far not the only important stat for a midfielder and you're pretty much doubling them..Do us a favour and stop misusing statistics if you don't know how to do that, please.

For a midfielder of his role and type he's been brilliant and quit deservedly is in the PL's team of the season and WHU's POTY.
 

MadDogg

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And what are the major midfield statistics

The most KMs in the premier league
The most aerial duels won in the premier league
Same number of tackles and clearances and tackles as Declan
The most goals from CM/CDM remember, and he didn't score just headers, he scored some nice goals with his foot too, same as McTominay

Yeah the passing stats not the best we can tell, but it's not his play style, Messi really can't win any aerial duels to score many himself right?
Passing is by far not the only important stat for a midfielder and you're pretty much doubling them..Do us a favour and stop misusing statistics if you don't know how to do that, please.

For a midfielder of his role and type he's been brilliant and quit deservedly is in the PL's team of the season and WHU's POTY.
I consider the main goal of the midfield to get control of the game, so the most important stats to that would be passing, creativity and defensive stats, all things that Soucek is quite low on. Scoring goals is obviously a very nice bonus, winning headers is nice as well, but I'd consider them bonus not the main thing for a midfielder. I wasn't aware of the most distance covered stat (I knew he would be high but not the highest), but it surprises me a bit that he doesn't combine that with higher defensive stats at least.

In saying that, I'm happy to admit I haven't actually watched him play that often and he might be much more effective than what stats imply. I only really took note of him for a 3 or 4 games after I first did the stats (and the matches we've played them) and I did find him average then, but it was such a small sample that I may have just caught a bad period.