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TheSage last won the day on July 8

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About TheSage

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    I'm a semi-retired teacher

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  1. Askey didn't particularly like Gibbons last season and always favoured Clark, so I'd imagine he wants another right back for certain, whoever it may be. Plus a reserve keeper. Whatever else happens is anyone's guess, depending on if BW and CR go or not, and on the loan market, late on. Ideally we do need a midfielder (or two) - one to score goals and two as a cover for Oyeleke. That's one of my concerns. Last year I was worried if we lost Pope because we were lightweight up top. That is no longer the case but we do look a bit lightweight in midfield to me, if Oyleke is injured and we don't have a player now like Kay to step in. But by the end of August I would imagine 1-2 have departed for regular football and 3-4 have arrived to complete the squad. There might yet be a surprise or two in store.
  2. We've hit rock bottom in the past 2-3 years and been so poor that it's unrealistic to expect a total transformation to the side in one window though we all do! I agree about the forward line - and that was the main problem for us in the past - so we have to be very pleased about that. Elsewhere, in an ideal world, we'd have a stronger back four. Currently we are "missing" Clark and Howkins from last April who were arguably better than what we have got at present. It remains to be seen if any of the younger boys can make the midfield 3-4 but we again look very dependent on Oyeleke, so if he gets injured.... And we don't have much choice if Joyce doesn't play in front of the back four. No Kay to step in any longer. Are we strong enough in midfield? Are we physically strong enough? But, on paper, it's certainly a big improvement in the attacking third, and the hope is that a smaller, tighter knit squad can benefit us. Ideally I'd like us to sign a strong right sided defender, a defensive midfielder as well as a goal-scoring creative ten, and a reserve keeper. Two of those are on our radar and if BW and/or CR leave that will free up another place, plus a loan player perhaps, and hey-presto the jigsaw comes together!! On paper we are no longer as dependent on a fit Tom Pope and have more pace on the wings, so all good. But if Oyeleke is out are we strong enough in midfield? Physically I worry a little bit because we seem lightweight in midfield to me and lacking a bit of height and strength. Big, powerful,bustling Colchester will be very testing first one up and we'll find out a lot about the team on the opening day. But hopefully we still have 2-3 more to come and can strengthen the line up still before the August kick-off. We all want more and we're never satisfied!
  3. I think, as Jacko says above, that sums it up admirably. It's like being in a parallel universe where primary school children have taken over the classroom and the level of debate and lack of maturity and common sense is staggering. There's a vacuum at leadership level across the board and very little joined up thinking.
  4. So presumably Browne and Thomas have gone. They might be injured/rested but it's logical to assume they've left the building. Thomas would have to be good to shift Pope and Bennett, and we've now signed Amoo who I suppose is a bit like Browne. Is that fair comment? Whitfield might be considering another offer. Cummings is getting a further chance [as is one of the keepers] and you would assume he's got a chance on the right side of defence as we need another defender there. Lots of ifs and buts, I know!
  5. Always fun and always nice to see great support from Down Under. The site would be a poorer place without your input, Barry - literary, financial and all things football related.
  6. It's amazing when you think that someone like Trump could be elected by the good citizens of the US of A. But, like here now, the voters seem to have an appetite for extremes and giving mainstream opinion a wide berth. The ex head of MI6 I think it was said only the other day that there's a breakdown in the political system and both Tory contenders for the crown, along with JC, are not, in his experienced view, of the right calibre to lead the country. We've had a few "interesting" times in recent political history, from the Profumo Affair, to the Pound in Your Pocket, from the three day week to the Winter of Discontent, from the miners' strike to the Poll Tax, from Black Wednesday to Iraq, and on and on and on, but I don't think I can ever recall such a polarisation in views and an increasing intolerance among voters, along with such abysmal leadership in Parliament. Fascinating for the media but shambolic and embarrassing in so many ways for me.
  7. I'l wait until they're 8 down before counting any chickens but it is a good start. The ball is moving a bit though. We've seen a few games like yesterday when a score of only 230-240 can be a winning total on a cloudy day in England so cross everything. Looks like a good decision to stick with Plunkett over Ali today. I thought the toss might be crucial but we're now in with a chance.
  8. What is going on with Trickett-Smith? Is that his name? Wasn't he at Leek? Was he a Smurfthwaite signing who Askey doesn't rate or want? I haven't seen his name in friendly games have I? Any news or thoughts about him?
  9. We've backed ourselves into a corner and if/when we leave the EU we'll need the USA to help us rebuild our economy. As a result, Trump can do anything he likes and Boris will roll over and let him tickle his tummy, to quote Micky Adams! I've never ever known a UK ambassador get treated in this manner by a US president and if we'd got any clout we'd tell him he's out of order. But, as I say, we've backed ourselves into a corner with this ridiculously expensive and increasingly farcical idea of a No Deal Brexit and now we need Trump more than he needs us. It's crazy. Sheer folly. All he's bothered about is putting America first and getting deals for the rednecks who elected him. We've taken our eye off the ball and it's embarrassing and pitiful to see. Brexit is going to cost us untold billions and billions. Sterling has already gone south, along with inward investment. What did Branson say today? And all that money that Hammond was saving up to boost public services will now go on propping up a destabilised UK and fuel a bonfire of self destruction. It's economic madness, when our economy was doing fine inside the EU.
  10. I think he's had a few injuries. Going back to what XI we'll end up with next month is already interesting, and I suspect there might be 2-3 more to arrive. If we stick with 4.3.3 the front three places are already up for grabs with 5-6 lads after a place.
  11. There needs to be found a way of trying to bring people back towards the centre. If it wasn't for the ERG and their extreme views we would have left by now but they voted against their own government's deal and the rest is history. Polarised politics is no good for anyone. It brings out the worst in people and creates further divisions. I have found the last few years very depressing and offer the suggestion that we now live in a less tolerant, less respectful and more angry society - and that for me is not a cause for any celebration whatsoever.
  12. At the end of the day it sounds like a really good work out. If they brought on better and fresher players then they should finish the stronger if we kept most our ours on for the final hour. It's really about fitness and trying out things. No Pope, Whitfield or Monty?
  13. Well, well, well. It finishes 4-3 to the Vale! Seems like we had a better team out in the first third than in the last.
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