Date:Thursday August 20 2009
With the recent arrival of Duff, Greening and Dikagoi - all midfielders - the question of what our first choice midfield will be is an interesting one. Will Roy Hodgson continue with our midfield from last season and rely on consistency or will he experiment and make some changes?
There is no-one in our midfield that stands out as "the one to drop". Our midfield was one of our greatest strengths last season as was our consistency in selection and one could argue that any changes to the starting eleven could interrupt this consistency and be for the worse.
Having said that, Duff and Greening are two quality players with plenty of premier league experience and although Dikagoi has probably been brought in for depth, surely one of Duff and Greening will be brought into the preferred starting eleven.
Etuhu is probably the most likely to lose his place in the team as he only got into the team due to Bullard`s departure last January and although he has played very well, he looks the most likely to go. This could result in a straight swap with Jonathan Greening in the centre of midfield which would certainly make our central midfield an experienced one with Murphy and Greening together - a prospect that makes my mouth water.
Duff however is slightly more complicated. A left-footed wide player is something that we have been missing, although we have been able to play Dempsey on the left to provide an attacking threat while Davies provides width on the right. In fact, it seems very unlikely that Dempsey or Davies will lose their place in the starting eleven as they have been exceptional for us over the last year or so. At the moment however, Davies is injured and so this could be an opportunity for Hodgson to try out some different combinations in midfield. Also, Duff could play behind the front meaning that a striker might lose his place and we would play a 4-4-1-1 formation. Either way, I think Roy will have to experiment because there is no obvious solution to our "spoilt for choice" midfield conundrum.
Date:Thursday August 20 2009
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