After two successive defeats we need to bounce back with a win to boost morale before our game with Villa on Saturday and a victory would also give us a great start to our Champions League campaign.

There has been a lot of debate as to whether we should persist with a 4-5-1 or go back to 4-4-2. Regular readers will know that I don’t feel that we really have a choice but to stick with 4-5-1 and therefore my team will play in that formation.

It looks like Heurelho Gomes will return in goal, which is very welcome. Unfortunately, it also looks like a game too early for Younes Kaboul and Ledley King after their injuries, leaving Bassong as our only recognised central defender.

If Ledley and Kaboul do miss out, then our only options are either Corluka or Huddlestone. I don’t think there’s a lot of difference between the two in the position, so it’s just a matter of whether we go for continuity or make a change. I just think that Corluka is struggling and would give the central defence position to Huddlestone, where he would have the pace to ping some of his balls towards the likes of Bale and Lennon.

Hutton and BAE should start at full back, allowing Bale to return to the left wing. I’d start with Lennon again on the right and in central midfield would go for Modric and Palacios. Yes, Wilson has been bad this season, but I think we need to go back to having a defensive midfielder, after looking pretty open against West Ham.

Van der Vaart plays in his position behind the lone striker. I’d keep Crouch in that role. He took some stick after the West Ham game, but he’s looked very good in Europe so far this season and deserves to keep his place for that reason.

So this is my team. Who would you go for?

———-Gomes————-

Hutton-Huddlestone-Bassong-BAE

Lennon–Palacios—Modric–Bale

——–Van der Vaart———

———-Crouch————-

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7 COMMENTS

  1. No need to play 4-4-2 at home against the weakest team in the group – we should be ballsy, play to our strengths in this one and have a proper partnership up front.

    Let’s try Modric coming in front the right and give Lennon a rest

    Gomes
    Hutton – Corluka – Bassong – BAE
    Modric – Huddlestone – VdV – Bale
    Crouch – Pav

  2. What I think does not matter, I’d have then all. But I think Harry will go with:

    Hutton, Corluka, Bassong, BAE

    Lennon, Modric, Bale, Thud,

    VDV

    Crouch

    I am so excited that I am having to sit on a towel here in my office, I knew wearing the very short dress today was a mistake. Still at least I’m all alone in my office, if you know what I mean.

    XX

  3. Can’t argue much with that lineup. With the shaky back line I see the argument for Palacios, but with his terrible run of form of late, might it be better to start Kranjcar instead? Niko hasn’t played spectacularly, but he’s been solid in his appearances for the most part…

  4. I disagree with Ben, I think the poster got it right the first time. Corluka is slower than Hudd (especially at CB if their attacks come down the middle) and Modric would be ineffective at right-wing. Plus I’m sure this Champs League game should be important enough to re-ignite a somewhat indifferent Lennon of late. Lastly, I think Pav should come on as a sub if the Crouch system is not working. To be fair Crouchie seems to work well against European defences, he’s just average in the PL…COYS ! 2-1 to Spurs.

  5. —————— Cudichini ———————–

    —-Hutton-Bassong – Huddlestone- B.A.E——–

    —— Lennon ——- Sandro ——- Bale ——–

    ————- V d V ———– Modric ————

    ——————– Crouch ———————-

  6. Gomes
    Corluka—Bassong—King—BAE
    Modric—Jenas—Hudd—VDV—Bale
    Crouch

    Lennon should come off the bench as an impact sub. His form has been quite disappointing and maybe coming off the bench will help iron out any confidence issues he may be having.

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