Likely team set up/formation/starting XI for 2017-18

Split from the transfer thread.


  • I guess so. Our strongest 11 is probably:

    Zab - Reid - Ogbonna - Cresswell
    Noble - Obiang
    Antonio - Lanzini - Arnautovic

    With Fonte, Kouyate, Ayew and Carroll as strong back-ups and players who could easily take places based on form.

    Noble and Kouyate will be a key battle for a place IMO.
  • There is no way Kouyate gets left out imo

    This maybe the season where Noble struggles to hold down a place for the majority of it
  • Kouyate in front of Obiang and Noble IMO
  • in def at the moment I was Reid plus1.

    With kouyate injury we will get to see how noble obiang get on, it's 2 from 3, I do like the dynamic presence that kouyate brings but his passing isn't great.
  • Yea I think Kouyate is 100% first team, his power in the middle of the park is so key for us

    Interested to see how we line up as we were better with 3 at the back last season but we have approached preseason with Bilic's preferred 4-2-3-1

    Wanna know how he approaches the team when everyone (Including Andy) are fit, lot of questions do we go with 2 up top and drop one of Arnie, Antonio or Manu or bench Carroll or Hernandez
  • In terms of quality, imo, it goes Obiang (who's our only proper DM), then Kouyate and then Noble.

    But I understand why Noble could get in front. We do need leaders on the pitch.

    However, we don't want the situation where Obiang or Kouyate want to leave because they're not getting enough game time.
  • I'm surprised Kouyate is seen as 100%, to be honest.

    He has pace and power but he does less and less with it now, and his passing is really poor.
  • And Nobles passing is only backwards
  • I guess so. Our strongest 11 is probably:

    Zab - Reid - Ogbonna - Cresswell
    Noble - Obiang
    Antonio - Lanzini - Arnautovic

    With Fonte, Kouyate, Ayew and Carroll as strong back-ups and players who could easily take places based on form.

    Noble and Kouyate will be a key battle for a place IMO.

    Looks about right to me Jorderz ;ok

    In the so called 'easier' games.. Could even play Lanzini a little deeper and play Ayew behind the striker.
  • Didn't kouyate recently post a cryptic message indicating he was effectively keeping the option of leaving open (or something to this effect)? Maybe this is why there is alleged interest in this N'Diaye fellow?
  • IronHerb said:

    And Nobles passing is only backwards

    1. It isn't, as the stats prove time and again.
    2. At least he regularly finds a West Ham player, whichever direction he passes it.
  • edited July 2017
    We generally play two defensive/box-to-box CMs in our formations. We really only have those three (MN, PO, CK) competing for those two positions. (Both Lanzini and Fernandes are CAM by trade, and will only play as one of the retreated centre two if there are injuries to our main three or late in a game and we are chasing). We play more than enough games for all three to get lots of playing time with resting/rotating/injuries/bans/form causing the three to be in and out the starting 11.

    For me this is the reason we have let Nordtveit go - we brought him in under the presumption we would have a European adventure last season and thereby needed four CMs to cover our two positions because of the amount of games. This then didn't occur and we could not provide our '4th' CM enough games so it appears he (understandably) wanted to leave. With no Europe only 3 first teamers should cover us, with Fernandes/Lanz/possibly Cullen if he stays as back up if two of our three are out. I do not expect us to bring in a DCM this summer to replace Nordtveit.
  • If the players can make it work my fav system is 4231.

    Slav on the Arnie sigining that he play anywhere in the front 3, nice to have options.
  • Last season after a match had finished, Kouyate was high fiving the crowd as he walked off the pitch but he left me hanging, so he deserves to start on the bench for that alone, not that I'm bitter or anything ;whistle
  • Obiang and Kouyate over Noble for me too. I get that Noble's considered a leader on the pitch, but with Hart and Zaba in the picture now, we have other options.

    And good call Baracks ;ok There was a quote attributed to Kouyate that suggested he maybe wasn't 100% happy, so maybe N'Diaye is being considered an insurance policy ;hmm
  • OCS - you can't just walk into a squad and be given the armband, you need to establish yourself, get to know who is who and let the established players get to know you. The players know Zabs and Hart from playing against them but despite their years of top flight experience they're the new boys.

    Noble will still be captain with Reid vice captain,
  • I'm not suggesting either should be captain ASLEF.

    Hart and Zaba are leaders and I don't think they need to be captain to be so.

    So do you think Noble should play because he's captain, irrespective of whether there are better players than him?
  • With a consistent right back, we got to 4-2-3-1 imo

    And if that's the case, those 2 in the middle need to be disciplined enough to sit. That's why, for me, Noble and Obiang are my first choice. CK in the games where we need a little more drive, but in MN and PO we have two players who can sit, pass, and break and play effectively.
  • Agreed. Kouyate has good qualities but I don't think what he brings provides enough balance, and his poor passing is costly with only two sitting players.
  • So who starts when Carroll is fit, Andy or Chicarito (because surely that is done now)

    Zab Reid Ogbonna Cressers
    Obiang Kouyate
    Antonio Lanzini Arnautovic

    Sub; Adrian, Masuaka, Fonte, Noble, Feghouli/Snodgrass, Ayew, Carroll/Chicarito
  • With strikers I'd say whoever is scoring the most. Which will probably be Hernandez.
  • My preference is also 4;2;3;1 , I feel it is what works best with the players we have. I would probably have as a first 11:

    ------'Lil Pea-------

    Allowing for a back up 11;

    Obviously these days rotation and other issues enable the first 11 to be fluid between those 22 players, and it's not even including Fletcher, Sakho (should he return), Cullen, Burke, etc. Arguably, Ogy/CK/Masu/Carroll should start too. TBH it's a decent squad to be getting along with even if we don't bring in anyone else (Chicharito excepting).

    However should we need to switch be it due to the opposition, chasing/hanging on to the game, etc I feel we have the personnel to move to 3;4;2;1 , 4;4;2 , 4;3;3 , 4;4;2 (diamond), or 5;4;1 if needed.
  • If we go 3 at the back I would rather play Antonio as right wing back. Not sure Zabaleta is best suited to that role.

    Fonte Reid Ogbonna
    Antonio Kouyate Obiang Cressell
    Lanzini Arnoutavic
  • If we do go 3;4;2;1 , I agree our best wing back option is Antonio right (followed by Byram) but I feel Masuaku is the better LWB (obvs followed by Cresswell, who I think is the better LB). However overall I still believe 4;2;3;1 is our optimal formation.
  • Chicharito starts game one purely on the fact that AC and Sakho won't be fit in time. When (if) they do get fit, who starts will I guess depend on whether chicharito has started well for us.
  • We won't buy Chicarito and not play him after 5 games. I don't rate Antonio as a WB as he is often slow to get back. I think 4-2-3-1 is our best formation.
  • Its almost impossible to give a nailed on "best 11" simply because we have real depth and versatility, but also the genuine option of varying what formations and systems we can play; Slaven has showed flexibility in this and does deserve alot of credit in doing so. Theres also little variations which come into the mix depending on the type of opposition, their strengths and weaknesses, home/away, etc, etc, etc which all come into play and open up little, but important variations in how we set up and who gets brought into the side. Anyway, I would probably edge towards:-





    There is legitimate competition though; Byram will push Zaba, Masukau will push Cresswell, etc, etc so it cant be nailed on 100%. Likewise there will always be strong arguments for bringing in individuals based on what we need at the time, for example, Collins at the back is one which will always be an option as we know exactly what Ginge brings to the team. Similarly, if we are playing at home against a team we know will concede alot of possession and simply play on the counter, then the argument could be made for Kouyate dropping into the back 3, etc, etc.
  • There will be teams that Carroll is better suited to playing, and teams that Hernandez is. Like, I would want Carroll playing 180 minutes against Swansea, for example
  • edited July 2017
    Looking forward to the Little Gem-Little Pea combo.

    And if we can get Big Carrot in the mix too...

    (Baz - I think you said Sundays were my pun days. ;) Sunday league's about my level too.)
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