martedì 5 giugno 2012

Adapt when necessary

Blues boss Chris Hugton is high on the list of Norwich and WBA, with both clubs searching for a new manager. Hughton was already interviewed by West Brom last season. And Hughton was also linked with Swansea City following Brendan Rodgers exit to Liverpool. The work he has done at Birmingham has been outstanding. Hughton is a  4-4-2 disciple.
“My preferred formation is 4-4-2 or a form of 4-4-2, 4-4-1-1, with one playing a little bit more off the front, because I think that gives you a little bit more in the opposition half, it allows you to keep the ball more in their half". (Hugton 2011)
 FourFourTwo Performance dedicated a lot of time to Hughton. He talked about how to stop the opposition's passing game,  how to make the opposition play the long ball game you have to press high up, how to countering a team pressuring high.
He's open to change when it is needed. For sure he wants to play on the ground.
“Certainly what I want to do is play as much as possible a passing game, look to what your strengths are". (Hugton 2011)
 But you have to adapt.
"You can look at different philosophies and I think it’s about playing to the strengths of what you have got.”

"Generally I want to play a passing game, but you have to be very open-minded.". (Hugton 2011)
This is because Hughton switched from 4-4-2 to a 4-5-1 formation during the game he needed to do it. So he could deal with Norwich style of play. Rumors at the start of last season predicated Norwich to get relegated. Instead, Paul Lambert'side was easily adapted to EPL's life playing a direct football, very far from possession football played at Swansea, the other EPL newcomer. Norwich emphasis on long balls to Grant Holt and Steve Morrison resulted on more long balls than any other EPL side. Norwich usually lined up in a traditional 4-4-2 but they had the ability to change look. If you take a look at West Brom too, they have tried a 4-3-3 or 4-5-1 system under Roy Hodgson, but they have fondness for a 4-4-2. Hughton can utilize both. He's is not a parking the bus fan. 
“There can be a philosophy of going away from home and trying to get what you can, trying to sit behind the ball and making yourself difficult to beat."
“But you can’t defend for 90 minutes, if you try to then the likelihood is that you will lose. You have to be a threat yourselves and do enough to try and win games." (Hugton 2011) 
He seems to be a good manager. The question is: stay or not at Blues next season? The Championship could be tougher next year with teams Sheffield Wednesday and Charlton alongside Blackpool and Cardiff City. So Birmingham City needs quality and depth to compete. Can the Blues give him that?

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