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Ok, I admit that I've failed somewhere before. But anyway welcome. Just a brief intro on what you should expect here:
1. Football. Not gonna post much of that any soon since season is over. :S
2. Anime, Games, etc. Just abt anything conceivable under the Japanese radar barring anything and everything Rule 34. Now that's illegal. Period. -.-;
3. Music. Everything to do with it is listed under the tab.
5. Unacceptable humour: Anything and everything is fair game here. As long as I don't get rounded up by the ISA. -.-'

6.
The Known World=Fantasy world building in process. I: Used to be glossary, now devoted to random rambling; II: Character Concepts; III: Lore.
7. der Wolf=my Fictionpress account under the moniker Tsumujikaze no Soujutsu. A Ranger's Tale is hosted under this page. :)
8. New section now upped. Maybe I should also gun for upping A Ranger's Tale here since I do have this funny feeling that traffic coming to here is way more than whatever I'll get in FP.

Statement of intent: Everything said here is a figment of personal opinion, be it me or anybody commenting. I try to be responsible, but my parents=/=parents of the world.

@Druid of Luhn: Crap. Should have remembered far earlier to give you the credit for your CSS text box code. :(

A/N: But sadly, it seems that your CSS text box code has now been halved efficiency wise. :(

That most important note I should have added: Any images posted in this blog are NOT my own stuff. I got them from Google image search, I don't earn any shit by being a thief and liar. Those responsible for the pictures, rest assured that you all are great artists in your own regards. Sadly, we all know what limited space means in terms of posting.

Latest Note: Changed alignment for my page widgets due to my worry that I can't centre align the thing.

Note on A Ranger's Tale: In case any complaining fella wants to have a legal case with me, let this be known that A Ranger's Tale is rated M by default. I've upped the swearing and somewhat a bit on the dark/gritty factor. You all have been warned, let no little boy and girl enter the forbidden realm.

Latest on ART: A Ranger's Tale now starting to kick back in gear. But I really hate the insanely fluctuating climate here in S'pore.

P.S: Oh, and one more thing. Vid below is yet another ideal OP for A Ranger's Tale.

Monday, 9 July 2012

The most insane tactical talk by yours truly ever. Period.

Disclaimer!
This is just something I'm pulling off just for fun. The fact that I do read Sun Tzu's Art of War doesn't mean a dime here. Again, believe what I've said below at your own risk.

Preface
Make or break. That's the story of Middlesbrough F.C come next season. To me, nothing is absolute especially in football. Simply put, it's gonna be a bumpy ride for Mogga and the lads.

Foreword Note
The Emmanuel Ledesma deal has been pretty much a 90% done deal. The reason behind my words here is... well you all know why.


Breakdown on the lads in red:

Goalkeeper


Jason Steele
We cannot afford to lose this kid of steel. Period. If there's anything to go by on his performances so far, he will be vital key to our promotion hopes. Amazingly enough, he's part of Team GB. And he's not one of the overage 3. Don't believe me, go Google search. You won't find me lying through my teeth here. Stats as our 1st team goalkeeper has been nothing short of consistent absurdity personified.

Centre Back

Jonathan Woodgate
Has Steve Gibson gone off his rocker? What about Tony Mowbray himself then? Perhaps the truly balmy will always be those who have no life beyond their keyboard. It's good to say stuff in the internet, yet I will always know a person without a life whenever I see what was being said. If it's merely a good will gesture, then allow me to announce the saddest news ever: Middlesbrough F.C doesn't run a charity. For your very own information, Teesside do have it's own signature charity organizations: The Finlay Cooper Fund and Gary Parkinson Trust Fund. So now the biggest reason: Why? The answer is very simple. The difference between a decent centre-back and a good centre-back lies in how well the player can read the game. Pace and power is only secondary. If you can't read the game, you're a shit centre-back. In fact Woodgate's inclusion here is a no-brainer. It will be for the best if we can tie Seb Hines[1] up in the long run, but to throw him into the deep is way too early especially given the fact that only the Above knows when Matthew Bates[2] is going to recover. At the age of 32, Woodgate still has the chance of going out with all guns blazing. And his exceptional reading of the game together with the potential boon offered by his on-the-field leadership shouldn't be laughed at. So will he get injured again? Amazingly enough when he was on loan under Gareth Southgate as the gaffer, he actually stayed injury free. Until he joined Spurs from henceforth onwards that is. Given who his defensive partner is within the tactical chart's context, I truly doubt he will end up over-exerting himself. Winning a 50-50 challenge on a consistent basis has never been so real before on our side.

Rhys Williams
I once told AnalAlex years before that this kid will be the mainstay of the Aussie national team. While granted he doesn't have much of a sniff at the first team chances, those who know what happened during the 2010 World Cup can and will be able to guess why. Thankfully he didn't come off the worse by end of last season. He didn't have much luck with injuries last time round, but given the respite granted by this year's Euro tournament (i.e. The only charitable deed done by Platini and the UEFA), there will be a very legit chance that he will be back for good. Just to give you all a clue on what he's capable of: He has slotted into three roles without any problems. Centre-back, right fullback and centre midfield. Mowbray once likened him to a Rolls Royce engine. Simply put, his level of athleticism and versatility is so bloody ridiculous, I still find it a miracle of sorts that he opted to sign the extension. The only catch? He will most likely bail out if we fail again next season. Fears of a contractual clause has always been very real for a reason.

Right Fullback

Tony McMahon
The funny mugshot aside, I truly hope he won't leave as free agent. His assets as a set-piece taker/crosser and versatility as a centre-back/right midfield shouldn't be dismissed. Defensively wise, a lot has been said on big players beating him for free. Yet if there's anything to go by, you can't really do a dime without ample cover. He has been playing the right fullback position by default ever since his youth playing days. Big strikers at the Championship? Well, who said such players should be banned in the top flight?

Left Fullback

Joe Bennett
The most promising left-back we've had for donkey years. In a very real sense, losing Andrew Taylor wasn't that much of a bummer after all. Although Cardiff has also gained a good left sided player on the deal itself. Last season could be summed up as disappointing. Not so much on the lack of trying, but rather what had hit him last time round was the same problem with any given young players. Inconsistency. Compounded with the fact he's had his own injury moments, it's really a no-brainer. But to me, it's a blessing in disguise. At least that will give him time and space to clear his mind. Defensively, he can be caught out cold. Yet upon going forward, this is where he shines. Remember the first statement here? The willingness to run at defenders can be truly dangerous for the opponents given the formation here (Read: Break and counter anyone?). What truly needs to be improved is... yes you all have guessed it: his defensive game.

Defensive/Holding Midfield

Nicky Bailey
Mr Consistent is a legit nickname for a very good reason. This is the guy, who as a defensive midfielder has typified the dogged North Eastern spirit 24/7. Coincidentally (or not), our form suffered when he ended up on the treatment table. As our default defensive midfielder, he's nothing glamorous. Yet I will label him as the standard box-to-box midfielder who can surge forward whenever called upon. The Southampton match should be a fairly accurate barometer. Willing to get into challenges, willing to show his heart on the sleeve and even willing to stand up for the lads on the pitch (which if I remembered correctly, had truly happen before last season). This is the kind of midfield leader, that lynchpin at the middle park we all have been looking for ever since Southgate took that stupid decision to sell Lee Cattermole (which to be fair is still hampered by his fiery temper the last time I heard). The most memorable deed done by Gordon Strachan. No sarcasm intended since Strachan was indeed the one who signed him from *gasp of horror* Charlton Athletic.

Grant Leadbitter
Perhaps someone far closer to Cattermole? He has never professed to play the nice guy, but laugh him off at your own peril. Barring having your own balls crushed on the pitch, Leadbitter is yet another lad who truly typified the North East bulldog. People have been comparing him with Barry Robson and said he's not that good. That's bullshit. Robson is a far more of a technical player along the winger/wing forward/attacking midfielder mould. For Leadbitter, his style is more similiar to Bailey barring one extremely valuable asset: He plays more like Paul Scholes than others would like to give credit for. I truly doubt he can pick out a pass like the legend himself. Yet give him the ball and he still can pull of a vital pass. In fact, don't trust what you see in Youtube and a mere few matches. It's a selective procedure based on humane error. Ipswich fans hated him, but a good bit of the Charlton fans hated Bailey as well! Guess where the guy above him has gone to? You don't get to call a player shit where in fact he has been playing top flight in the Sunderland shirt and claiming the armband at Ipswich.[3] Unless you're trying to hint that your gaffer is an idiot who don't even deserve to kick a ball.
Special Note: Who could ever forget the emotional tears shed by a real man when he scored against Arsenal at the Wearsiders' turf? Results counted for little at that time during October 4th 2008.
 
"People close to me know why I went down on the floor like I did, I just want to leave it at that. The people who know me know why I kissed that area of the ground. My dad's ashes were buried there. I don't want to go on about it. It just means a lot to me and my family. It's exactly that spot and it was always my intention to do something like that when I scored my first goal here."
 
Attacking Midfield
 
Emmanuel Ledesma
Provided the deal goes through as per expected, I think Merouane Zemama is a done toast. Just don't ask me what I think of Daily Mail's report on the rumoured bust-up between him and Mowbray pre-Watford. There's a very legit reason why I don't profess to be a sucker. If other people want to bite the bait, it's their problem, not mine. Case in point: There's no smoke without fire. There's no smoke coming out for donkey ages now. Justified bashing aside, let's talk about this lad. Technically, he's extremely sound. We're cash strapped. That's for sure. But then again people didn't give us a chance in hell to hit the 7th spot pre-season back then. We could have killed the March Hare. We could have secured a playoff spot. We failed. Typical Boro. Screw that commonsense bullshit. -.-' Fanboy griping aside, I might have seen a shadow of Julio Arca in him. Although granted I truly doubt Arca will go anywhere unless some sucker is willing to vomit up stupid money for a 31 year old midfielder who actually has around two more good years in him (after that, I don't know). He has time on his side (born 1988=you do the maths), he has experience in the physical English football (yes he played for Walsall, but that's because Jeff Bonser is an asshole. Don't believe me, take a Google) and above everything else, we don't have insane money to burn. We're not West Ham to be fair. That's the cold hard truth.

Wing Forward

Marvin Emnes
Those who know Championship football will know what this guy is capable. Apparently, Brendan Rodgers tried to seal a permanent deal back when Swansea was gunning for promotion. He failed. Swansea's loss is still our gain. Last season, he blazed an insane trail of goals. Take note guys, we're not talking about a centre-forward, yet funnily enough he was the top scorer in the Championship hit chart for the early half of last season. After that, the goals dried up. And our ability to shoot straight went up the smoke as well. Generally speaking of course. To me, the biggest problem has been that of a burnout. Temporarily that is. Given the physical nature of the Championship, once the dry spell comes (which happens to everybody in the game anyway) and that there's no one to take over, a burnout will be a no-brainer. It's not Emnes' fault seriously. Things just happened and he might have been the worst victim of Typical Boro itself. And to think the fans actually felt like shit. Emnes must have been feeling ten times worse off then. So imagine my delight (and just about every perfectly sane Boro fan) when Mowbray stated that Emnes will be staying. We really need this guy to recharge his batteries. And above all, we don't really need him to score like a gun-crazy fellow. To me, his most valuable assets lies in his speed and ball control. Arguably the most technical player we've had for ages, he can just go about switching sides with Halliday (more on him next) and confusing the opponent teams. I won't go so far as to say he can unlock the defence solo-mode. Yet he can easily create space with his off-the-ball running while his speed can easily beat the opposing defender on an one-on-one. Of course he can score. If you can't do so when being blessed with a winger level speed in his position, then something is wrong somewhere, somehow. Read: You'll need a counseling session.

Andy Halliday
A lot has been said on we need wingers. To me, that's stereotypical nonsense. Yes, the Championship pace is indeed hectic. Even more so than the Premier League because no sane Arab will buy over a Championship team just to demand pretty football. The challenge just isn't there. So is an out-and-out winger truly needed? To me, Championship football is indeed a compact truck going at 100kph. Yet such a speed will ensure that a far technically superior team will murder any Championship opposition for good. Simply put, you can't do a dime with two flat layers of four without the ball. Barring parking the bus of course. That's the only way. Yet, teams like Swansea and Brighton & Hove have proven to all of us that winning with flowing football is totally possible. Or rather far more possible than Arsenal trying beating Stoke or Sunderland by two goals or more without Van Persie. And herein lies Mowbray's problem. He has to go basement mode. We have just emerged out of the woods on the fiscal nightmare imposed by Strachan's signings (Seriously, Kris Boyd signing for us was a major wtf moment where stadium devolution had became a stark reality affirmed). We can buy. Sure we have the money, but not enough. Contractual talks are still ongoing, yet it might be far more towards slashing the wage bill than any other reasons. But can Halliday do a winger? Emnes is one too, but I'll be damned if he can't adapt into a wing-forward. Halliday's game is pretty similiar if you're to ask me. The key difference? Scoring in the Third Division of Scottish football was nothing to shout at. That is until you can score 15 goals in 44 appearances where in fact you realized you've just turned legal. In a very real sense, he might be far more of a goal machine than Emnes himself. If so, switching positions will bring about a whole new dimension of lightning assault play. Simply put, Halliday can ease off the mental pressure on his partner while Emnes can just release space for Halliday to run and get the ball. And this is just the basic visualizing.

Striker

Scott McDonald
1.73m in height, yet considered as a goal scorer. Why? To me, it's just that simple: His record speaks louder than words. Being 1.73 will mean that he had trouble winning headers. Yet we cannot discount the fact that he's far more of a classic poacher than any of our lads. Against bigger defenders, that's where the problem comes. Should the ball be kept on the ground? Or is blind-sliding a reality waiting to happen? A lot will hinge on how the provider reads the game and who are the ones providing the decoy run/screening. That's not McDonald's job. Given McMahon's crossing abilities, it's a matter of gauging rather than mission impossible. Swift passing? Direct set piece RPG? A smaller frame can just amount to a mobility advantage where you can get away far easier than someone used to playing rugby. Well, we all know how center of gravity works in all things human physics anyway. It's not as if you're Juggernaut of the Marvel series. Now that will be cheating. That will mean you're out to destroy Downing Street rather than a bunch of North East lads in red. And quite obviously, that will also mean you're out to get David Cameron even though he has nothing to do with football.
 
[1]: Lad has matured quite a lot post jaw op. Still he has a good way to go in learning the ropes at the highest level.
[2]: Injury prone. Able to stay problem-free under Mowbray has been something totally unexpected. Unfortunately, shit happens mean something totally unexpected as well. Get well soon, lad.
[3]: Sold to Ipswich for 2.6 million. The only catch? Steve Bruce had just came in, he later outed himself as a Geordie post-dismissal and we all know Leadbitter hates Geordies. A clash of egos while in the office?
 
Conclusion: Totally busted. In fact I don't even know whether my words make sense or not since I don't do football talk for money. Now have to sleep. But before I off the PC, here's a song clip spam: