Watford Academy/U23

Discussion in 'The Team Bus' started by wfc78, Aug 14, 2012.

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  1. Hogg-DEENEY!!!

    Hogg-DEENEY!!! Reservist

    So you're saying there were a load of kids playing against Hull then? Not a bad effort then!
     
  2. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    In isolation it wasn't a bad showing considering the official report says it was a team made up of "...three trialists, four Under-16s, three first years and one second year," with only one defender (Janjeva) from the actual U18 group, as well as a trialist 'keeper.
     
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  3. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    A 0-4 defeat away to Nottingham Forest this evening for the U23s.

    That's 4 wins out of 5 for Forest so defeat with a mix 'n match side isn't that much of a surprise.

    WFC's team (with age in brackets);

    Baptiste (g/k - 18), Barrett (21), Statham (20), Burchell (17), Perkins (20), Trialist (?), Crichlow (c - 20), Conteh (17), Hutchinson (18), Trialist (?), Forde (16).

    Subs: Trialist (g/k - ?), Hunter (16 - forward), Janjeva (18 - centre-back), Manning (17 - midfield), Lawal (17 - midfield).

    Teddy Perkins played despite being on loan with Hemel Hempstead. However, I don't think he started at the weekend for them.

    As for the way the official twitter feed listed the side, don't read too much into that.
    It looks like a back 3 of Barrett, Statham & Perkins with Burchell & Conteh as defensive midfielders.
    Forde probably started up front.
    Hutchinson has started as a wide player this season but the wings could easily have been occupied by him, Crichlow or both trialists - it's anyones guess to be honest.

    As it stands, neither club have released any details whatsoever other than WFC announcing the team.

    If I find out who the trialists were I'll post here and on twitter when I find out.
     
    EB Hornet likes this.
  4. LF24

    LF24 Academy Graduate

    This was shared via the clubs e-mail based newsletter the other week. It's an unlisted video, but I thought it may be of interest in here, 30-min video behind the scenes of the U23's pre-season:

     
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  5. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    It's good isn't it LF24. Interesting to hear some actual coaching and the reasons for what the players are being told.
     
  6. reids

    reids Squad Player

    I'll upload the match in the usual place tomorrow along with tonights game - might help you identify the trialists!
     
  7. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    Cheers Reids! I've asked around but getting nothing back. Virtually nothing by way of information from either side - just WFC giving our line-up - and no photo's I can use. Very strange.
     
  8. reids

    reids Squad Player

    Scrap the above - I already had the website open so have done it now - should be uploaded already.
     
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  9. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    Got it. I'll have a look after tonights game. Cheers.
     
  10. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    I've had a look through the Nottingham Forest U23 game from the 19th and despite losing 0-4 I thought Watford did okay in parts. Forest deserved their win but the result was probably flattering for them.

    A slight tactical change with a 3-3-1-3 formation deployed instead of the 3-2-2-3 option from previous games. Statham looked okay on the left of the back three, comfortable using both feet and rarely beaten in the air. For an U23 signing he looked quite capable.

    Conteh & Burchell looked better equipped with a third deep midfielder to play alongside with Burchell probably having his best game so far. He looked a lot more confident having a player either side of him rather than sitting in a pairing in front of the back three. The third midfielder I believe was Jack Torniainen, listed as a trialist, who was released by Bournemouth before the season started. He's a 19-yr old midfielder who plays with his head up, has decent composure and keeps it simple. He lacked dynamism on this showing but I've seen a lot worse in a yellow shirt. I'm not 100% sure it was him as there are no close ups with the single camera view but his hair looked familiar!

    The second trialist played centrally in the more advanced midfield position and had some nice moments on the ball. Again, comfortable in possession, mobile and he linked better than recent trialist Louie Watson with players behind & in front of him. He also had a couple of opportunities to score after arriving in the box with well timed runs & link-up play but was unable to finish each time. I'm not confident with a name for this player but if asked to hazard a guess I'd say ex-Sheffield United attacking midfielder Oliver Greaves (20), albeit without too much confidence. A handy U23 player who lacked fitness and whoever he is I wouldn't mind seeing him again.

    The front three had Dominic Hutchinson as centre-forward, Kane Crichlow wide left and 16-yr old Shaqai Forde wide right. I've been a bit disappointed with Hutchinson so far after the way the club spoke of him between seasons and he looks like he's struggling with playing in multiple positions, against strong defenders and the lack of time he has on the ball. Forde looks an exciting player though. Largely anonymous in the 1st-half, he did show some quick feet and flair towards the end of the opening period which gave a brief glimpse of why he was out there. Second half he was more involved and he timed his runs well behind his full-back, again showed some flair on the ball and a willingness to track back. Very early days but those quick feet look promising!

    A quick mention for Bosun Lawal, a tall 17-yr old who plays in centre midfield. He came on late in the game and showed good physical attributes and more importantly, the ability to find angled passes through the oppositions midfield. I'm quite excited after reading a fair amount about him in the past and now actually seeing a brief glimpse of him in action.

    As for the game, two poor attempts from Baptiste at saves - one soft shot close in squirmed through him & the second had him beaten at the near post - meant we were 2-down in the 1st-half. A lot of young tiring legs struggled to cope as the game wore on and two penalties were conceded in the final 15 minutes. We threatened a few times and had some nice passing moves but all too often either a decision on the ball took too long to make or the wrong choice was opted for altogether.

    Overall not great but there are a lot of players getting to grips with U23 football, not playing 4-4-2/4-3-3, what looks like a new tactical approach with playing out from the back and a new coach trying to gel youngsters and trialists together, quite often without senior U23 players who are back up for the subs bench for the 1st XI.

    Keep the faith! (Said more to myself than anyone else)
     
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  11. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    I've asked around trying to find out who the trialists were who played against Forest but have come up with absolutely nothing this time.

    Even the one I was relatively confident about, the ex-Bournemouth player Jack Torniainen, is not correct - his agency today confirmed it wasn't him.
    Still no photographs I can work from either which is very unusual.

    I wonder if Forest, as the home side, requested a media blackout if they had a player/players in their side they wanted to keep quiet about. Their right-back didn't lookalike the average U23 player and they didn't announce a line-up at all, much to the annoyance of some City Ground faithful.

    I'll keep digging but I'm not hopeful on finding out who these two are.
     
  12. lowerrous

    lowerrous Squad Player

    How?
     
  13. reids

    reids Squad Player

    check The Safe ;)
     
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  14. reids

    reids Squad Player

    I just had a look on InStat and it gave the full lineups! Looks like the trialists were Jake Cope (ex Bournemouth) and Phoenix Patterson (ex Spurs)

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2020 at 4:34 PM
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  15. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    That's handy! Thank you Reids, you've saved me many an hour not to mention my eyesight.

    I don't know Cope but I can't believe I've not recognised Patterson. Annoying. Saying that, I didn't even get the formation right - although the two wide men played more like forwards than midfielders to me.

    I can relax until the next game now.
     
  16. reids

    reids Squad Player

    No problem, useful to know for next time in case there's any other triallists!
     
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  17. reids

    reids Squad Player

    Do you have any interest in the U18s? Cos I can get those as well!
     
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  18. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    That would be incredible if you could do that.

    I'm sure I'm not the only one here who'd like to see who's coming through and how players progress/regress as they move up the age levels.

    So from a purely selfish perspective - yes please!
    But only if you've time and there's no chance of anything coming back to bite you in terms of sharing this stuff.

    Thank you Reids. I honestly find this more interesting than enduring the constant hyperbole of top level football.
     
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  19. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    Looks like the U23s are heading for defeat again.

    70mins gone and they're 0-3 down.
    Dan Phillips sent off in the 1st-half, no idea what the score was at the time though.

    Team news anyone?

    Parkes (GK) (C), Barrett, Stevenson, Trialist, Perkins, Statham, Hungbo, Phillips, Hutchinson, Trialist, Crichlow
    Subs: Roberts (GK), Burchell, Forde, Conteh, Lawal

    Other than the two trialists (Cope & Patterson again presumably) that's as strong as the starting XI is going to be with the players available right now.
     
  20. hornetboy1

    hornetboy1 First Team

    U23's are pretty hopeless. Shades of Harry Kewell about them at the moment.
     
  21. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    There's been a knock-on effect from the 1st team with players often unavailable due to them being back up to the main squad and there have been 4 or 5 out on loan at any one time too. I also think recruitment took a back seat due to the efforts of reshaping the first team so there have been plenty of 17/18-yr olds thrown in at the deep end along with a couple of 16-yr olds.

    Another possible excuse/reason is the change in coach. Mullins had been in charge for several seasons with fairly settled squads each season but now Omar Riza is finding his feet while having to work with depleted numbers.

    It will also affect the U18s and below as players are taken out of each age group to play in teams above their natural levels so it may look bad in the here and now, but if handled correctly the experience gained from playing against older, more experienced and often physically stronger players can benefit individuals further down the line.

    Watching the U23 games back over the last few weeks it's noticeable some of the younger players are showing signs of adapting to their new surroundings and also new styles of play. They aren't looking like world beaters but if they're improving then the coaches are doing their jobs.
     
  22. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    Watford U23s lost 0-3 to Coventry in the end.

    Phoenix Patterson did indeed play, seen below left of picture. Kane Crichlow is the ball carrier.

    ElBK5apXUAEgoX5.jpeg
     
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  23. We can't sign a footballer called Phoenix. We just can't.
     
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  24. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    The U18s drew 2-2 away at Sheffield Wednesday earlier today.

    Wednesday without a win this season, Watford with just the one. A draw almost inevitable despite line-ups changing from week to week at this level.
     
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  25. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    Does anybody know a public site which consistently lists the U18 lineups for the Professional Development Leagues?
     
  26. reids

    reids Squad Player

    It's not public but I can get them when the videos are released on InStat.
     
  27. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    I thought I'd ask for a public site so as not to lean on you again as it feels a bit of a liberty on my part to have you putting up the teams as well. I just can't find a site who consistently put the teams online though.
     
  28. reids

    reids Squad Player

    Don't mind, it's only a simple copy/paste! Todays lineup/video not available yet but should be up in the next couple of days I'd imagine (not sure how quick they go up - Championship games are always up the day after but imagine the youth games aren't as prompt)
     
  29. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    It would be great if you could! I've started watching the U18s today and there are a couple of players I can't recognise/am guessing at and it's bugging the life out of me.

    Sorry to ask. If you can - thank you! Please don't feel obliged though, you're already providing so much.

    On a side note, it's interesting all three teams - the 1st XI, U23s & U18s - are all playing with three at the back this season. Is Ivic behind this do you think or is it a better way to get defenders to use the ball on the floor?
     
  30. reids

    reids Squad Player

    Ah which games? I can get the lineups for all the games played so far! I'm not sure Ivic would have much of a say in the academy so imagine it's the latter, as you say gets the defenders plenty of time on the ball and is becoming a really widely used set-up in the senior game now so no harm getting them used to it (I think over half the Championship sides that played today started with a back 3!)
     
  31. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    I've only managed the QPR game so far (game week 1) as I'm going over the 1st-half a few times.
    The only lineup I have is for the Cardiff match - GW4.

    Yeah, it's bizarre how the Championship has embraced 3 at the back this season. It's good to see the U18 players with the ball at their feet in defence though. Janjeva looks okay but I don't recognise the other two from the QPR game - one is possibly Abbott - but they look as comfortable, if not more so, than some of the established pro's we have! Maybe not, but they look happy playing anywhere on the pitch which is pleasing to see.
     
  32. reids

    reids Squad Player

    [​IMG] Lineup for the QPR game - lemme know if you need any others!
     
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  33. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    Nice one! I was way off with some of the players!!
    If you can do the same for the Colchester, Millwall & Hull games I'll let you name my first born :D

    Thanks Reids - if I can return a favour at anytime, just ask. Or I'd be happy to put some money your way for all of this. Cheers.
     
  34. reids

    reids Squad Player

    No problem:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    and the QPR game as actually it seems like Dropbox doesn't like picture embedding:

    [​IMG]
     
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  35. The Recluse

    The Recluse Reservist

    Thanks @reids.

    I feel like a **** for asking - I had the Cardiff lineup but not the Millwall game, any chance you could drop that in please?
     

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