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The Importance of Alphonso Davies


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Wow guys, this one was special. I was in the building for this one and got to see Davies up close in a big match.    he didn’t offer a ton offensively in this one and was absolutely GASSED by t

Phonzie still doing Phonzie things after being injured.. David finding form in Ligue 1/Europe.. Eustaquio emerging as a top CM in Portugal.. Millar tearing apart PL2 and looking at a Championship loan

Kudos to Hansi Flick for taking Davies off just as David was about to start for Lille so we could all switch streams. Now there's a coach who truly understands the needs of Canadian soccer fans.

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6 minutes ago, lazlo_80 said:

Just watching that video and realizing he’s still only 18 he has the potentially to physically develop into a powerhouse. 

On the Caps he was looking like a monster - now with world class fit players on Bayern he looks very average! 

Great chest and finish on Neuer in that video. 

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2 hours ago, Keegan said:

On the Caps he was looking like a monster - now with world class fit players on Bayern he looks very average! 

Great chest and finish on Neuer in that video. 

Come on now, some close up slow mo shots of him running around and laying down stretching??  You could tell he looks very average from that?? 

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2 minutes ago, Bison44 said:

Come on now, some close up slow mo shots of him running around and laying down stretching??  You could tell he looks very average from that?? 

It’s not taking away from him, I’m saying the Bayern players are obviously a level up in fitness from caps players.  On the caps he looked like a man amongst boys.. and he was the boy!

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19 hours ago, C2SKI said:

Nice video on Davies first few days training in Doha. It sounds like he's integrating into the group well. 

 

I liked this and watched it, but objectively, it was worse than watching grass grow. Mind numbing. They even got Neuer to say the same thing, reluctantly, twice, in two different ways because he altered the syntax slightly. Then they repeated certain clips, to stretch it out. It was like they have some AV apprentice with them and just told him to fill up 6 plus minutes, and he did. And they posted it. 

I can hardly wait for the damn season to start to not have to put up with any more of this fluff.

 

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3 hours ago, Bison44 said:

Come on now, some close up slow mo shots of him running around and laying down stretching??  You could tell he looks very average from that?? 

That was a compliment! I agree with @Keegan too, he does look very average training with Bayern, as an 18 year old. Bayern Munich, one of the top clubs in the world, and he looks average, think about it, that's incredible isn't it?

In other words, he is 18 and he fits right in!

I knew when I saw him play in the All Star game against Juventus that he'd have no problem playing at Bayern. He still has everything to prove on the field, of course, but early signs are that he can physically take it at this level, and his skill is just enough that he'll adapt to the speed of play very soon. An equally physically gifted, but less skilled 18 year old may not have enough technical skill to train at Bayern's first team, but he does, and it looks like he'll play right out the gate!

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55 minutes ago, Unnamed Trialist said:

I liked this and watched it, but objectively, it was worse than watching grass grow. Mind numbing. They even got Neuer to say the same thing, reluctantly, twice, in two different ways because he altered the syntax slightly. Then they repeated certain clips, to stretch it out. It was like they have some AV apprentice with them and just told him to fill up 6 plus minutes, and he did. And they posted it. 

I can hardly wait for the damn season to start to not have to put up with any more of this fluff.

 

Meh, I see what your saying, but I'll take the fluff over nothing. I can't hardly wait for the real action to start though, like everyone else!

But just because they "fluffed it up" by replaying the same clips, it's not like they gave Neuer and Muller a script to repeat to the camera. They probably just told them to comment on what they think about Davies and how he's fitting into the team. It doesn't take anything away from their comments for me. I believe them to be genuine.

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2 hours ago, Obinna said:

That was a compliment! I agree with @Keegan too, he does look very average training with Bayern, as an 18 year old. Bayern Munich, one of the top clubs in the world, and he looks average, think about it, that's incredible isn't it?

In other words, he is 18 and he fits right in!

 

I guess I am the only one not able to tell the relative quality of his fitness watching him stretch and run through cones in slow mo.  

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7 hours ago, Bison44 said:

I guess I am the only one not able to tell the relative quality of his fitness watching him stretch and run through cones in slow mo.  

All due respect, but Alphonso making it, or not, at Bayern will have to do with a lot of factors. I'm just not sure that his fitness is going to be one of them. One look at the photos from his Bayern medical a few weeks ago makes clear that he's developed from the skinny kid that made his 'Caps debut 3 years ago into a budding 'brick shithouse'. He looks like an Olympic sprinter. I've never once seen him looking tired, not in matches, whether the 5th minute or the 90th, nor in any of the many training clips online. And, with him being universally lauded as a hard worker, I doubt that he'll let his fitness levels slacken off.

The only question to be determined is whether Alphonso has the requisite skill level and football brain to make it at the very highest level. I think he does, and will start showing it immediately next Friday.

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18 minutes ago, SthMelbRed said:

 I've never once seen him looking tired, not in matches, whether the 5th minute or the 90th, nor in any of the many training clips online. And, with him being universally lauded as a hard worker, I doubt that he'll let his fitness levels slacken off.

The only question to be determined is whether Alphonso has the requisite skill level and football brain to make it at the very highest level. I think he does, and will start showing it immediately next Friday.

He did look tired late in many Caps games. He also lost gas frequently, often also because of being fouled hard and having a knock. I think that is reasonable, he is more explosive than a long-distance runner, of course. 

In general, thinking of other sides, MLS teams not being able to handle more than one game a week, I never understood that. All this business about it being a physical league, and then rotating a squad for a midweek match. I just never got that, especially when you see the top teams in Europe playing 50-55 games a year. 

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2 hours ago, Unnamed Trialist said:

He did look tired late in many Caps games. He also lost gas frequently, often also because of being fouled hard and having a knock. I think that is reasonable, he is more explosive than a long-distance runner, of course. 

In general, thinking of other sides, MLS teams not being able to handle more than one game a week, I never understood that. All this business about it being a physical league, and then rotating a squad for a midweek match. I just never got that, especially when you see the top teams in Europe playing 50-55 games a year. 

I think the biggest issue MLS sides have with playing twice a week is the travel. Playing a league match in Vancouver on a Saturday, then Vs' Cup in Toronto on Wednesday night, followed by an away league match in Denver on Saturday, again (a fictitious, yet plausible scenario for the 'Caps) is harder than anything that Liverpool or Barcelona will face this season from a travel perspective. Vancouver in the summer can give pretty ideal playing conditions, but Toronto can be tough with heat and humidity, and Denver with altitude. The distances and variable climates can kill legs.

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1 hour ago, SthMelbRed said:

I think the biggest issue MLS sides have with playing twice a week is the travel. Playing a league match in Vancouver on a Saturday, then Vs' Cup in Toronto on Wednesday night, followed by an away league match in Denver on Saturday, again (a fictitious, yet plausible scenario for the 'Caps) is harder than anything that Liverpool or Barcelona will face this season from a travel perspective. Vancouver in the summer can give pretty ideal playing conditions, but Toronto can be tough with heat and humidity, and Denver with altitude. The distances and variable climates can kill legs.

I personally think the whole travel argument is overstated, it makes no sense to me.

First, because MLS teams do not play that much midweek, not half as much as European teams with multiple Cups and European competitions in between. They play less in MLS.

Second, because some countries also have a bit of distance to travel within their borders, like going to Canary Islands or Madeira, or inside Russia; or just as well, because flights are not available, so taking 3-4 hour train rides or even busing. Then European cup travel, can be as far as Vancouver-Orlando, Sevilla to Moscow for example.

I think that fitness is just not as good, not as well managed, and that players are not properly prepared. It also seems to me that playing style could be better, not as wasteful in terms of how energy is efficiently spent playing the game.

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18 minutes ago, Unnamed Trialist said:

I personally think the whole travel argument is overstated, it makes no sense to me.

First, because MLS teams do not play that much midweek, not half as much as European teams with multiple Cups and European competitions in between. They play less in MLS.

Second, because some countries also have a bit of distance to travel within their borders, like going to Canary Islands or Madeira, or inside Russia; or just as well, because flights are not available, so taking 3-4 hour train rides or even busing. Then European cup travel, can be as far as Vancouver-Orlando, Sevilla to Moscow for example.

I think that fitness is just not as good, not as well managed, and that players are not properly prepared. It also seems to me that playing style could be better, not as wasteful in terms of how energy is efficiently spent playing the game.

There are some pretty interesting articles that would suggest otherwise.  The articles are based around either the NHL or NBA so the travel is much greater and much more constant.  But the evidence suggests that teams that travel a greater distance, their performances and results suffer more.

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11 minutes ago, Unnamed Trialist said:

I personally think the whole travel argument is overstated, it makes no sense to me.

First, because MLS teams do not play that much midweek, not half as much as European teams with multiple Cups and European competitions in between. They play less in MLS.

Second, because some countries also have a bit of distance to travel within their borders, like going to Canary Islands or Madeira, or inside Russia; or just as well, because flights are not available, so taking 3-4 hour train rides or even busing. Then European cup travel, can be as far as Vancouver-Orlando, Sevilla to Moscow for example.

I think that fitness is just not as good, not as well managed, and that players are not properly prepared. It also seems to me that playing style could be better, not as wasteful in terms of how energy is efficiently spent playing the game.

While I don't doubt the bolded section, I think that North American travel is a real issue for MLS in comparison to nearly every European league. Even when the Champions League is factored in, this season, only Man City and Real Madrid, from the top echelon of clubs, have anything like a similar away trip in terms of distance travelled and time difference. Liverpool will play 48-53 competitive first-team matches this season. A maximum of 7 will require travel into a different time zone (should they reach the CL final), and each of those trips have only a 1 hour time difference. If Barcelona win the Champions League this season, they'll make 1-3 trips which require a time change. And they certainly won't be flying commercial, economy class for those trips!

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10 minutes ago, Corazon said:

There are some pretty interesting articles that would suggest otherwise.  The articles are based around either the NHL or NBA so the travel is much greater and much more constant.  But the evidence suggests that teams that travel a greater distance, their performances and results suffer more.

Steven Gerrard played 15 years at the highest level, playing between 40 and 50 matches most seasons. Asked about the biggest difference after moving to MLS, he emphatically identified the travel as the hardest adjustment.

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I don't see how the difference in travel between the major European leagues and the MLS cannot be a factor.  London, England currently has 6 of the teams in the Premier League.  So if you play for a London team, 19 home games and 5 away games (or 24 or your 38 total games) don't require you to leave the city you likely live in.  The furthest drive would be to Newcastle, which google maps tells me is a 5.5 hr drive, and you would only have to do that once.

Now compare that to the MLS where east coast teams regularly have to go to the west coast and vice versa.  Driving would not even be an option.  Even if you go on a road trip, the various teams on the west coast and the east coast aren't even a reasonable driving distance from each other.  Portland to LA is over 15 hours in driving time.

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Look at pointy football.  The NFL has all sorts of stats on teams that have to travel cross country and the dismal record (worse than a typical road team) they have.  Lets just look at the impact's schedule for 2019.  Lots of road games to start the year, first 5 weeks, away to san jose, away to houston, away to Orlando, bye week, away to KC, away to NY.  That more travelling than many european clubs do in a year.

 

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50 minutes ago, Bison44 said:

Lets just look at the impact's schedule for 2019.  Lots of road games to start the year, first 5 weeks, away to san jose, away to houston, away to Orlando, bye week, away to KC, away to NY.  That more travelling than many european clubs do in a year.

I found this about last EPL season. https://talksport.com/football/262392/how-far-fans-every-premier-league-club-must-travel-next-season-least-most-distance/

It says that Newcastle United fans would have to travel the furthest to go to every away game of the season for a grand total of 9075.62 miles. It doesn't explicitly say if that is round trip, but it would make sense for it to be round trip based on the context. So 4,537.81 miles if you just take the distance between cities (or stadiums probably). If you take the distance between Montreal and those first 5 opponents you end up with 6874.52 by air, or 7537.15 by road. The first 3 games (5384.29 air, 5832.07 road) is enough to surpass the distance covered by Newcastle United.

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