AwayGoalsRule Football Forum

The Internet's Finest Football Forum

Get moneyback specials on your football betting at PaddyPower


It is currently Sat Nov 18, 2017 10:27 pm

All times are UTC [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 282 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 11, 12, 13, 14, 15
Author Message
 Post subject: Re: Cleverley Does It
PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2015 12:25 pm 
Offline
General of the Army
General of the Army

Joined: Mon Sep 15, 2008 11:53 am
Posts: 31161
Location: Milton Keynes
Quote:
Tom Cleverley says he does not blame Louis van Gaal for ending his 13-year stay at Manchester United but intends to prove the Dutch manager wrong by winning back his place in the England squad.

The midfielder, 25, joined Everton on a free transfer in the summer after spending last season on loan at Aston Villa, and is set to make his debut against Stoke City in the Barclays Asia Cup, in Singapore, on Wednesday. He said: “I’ve got no regrets whatsoever about leaving Manchester United. Louis van Gaal was always very honest with me which is the most that you can ask as a player.

“I spent 13 years there and it’s been a massive part of my life. There were plenty of ups and downs and winning trophies, which I will never forget. They were some of the best days of my life and I will always look back with fond memories.”

There was clearly no future for Cleverley at Old Trafford and that feeling was only reinforced last weekend when Van Gaal completed the signings of the midfielders Bastian Schweinsteiger and Morgan Schneiderlin. Cleverley added: “It’s harder for young players to break through now but Van Gaal does give younger players a chance so it is possible. It’s exciting times for their club and I wish them all the best but I’m concentrating on Everton now.”

The 2013 Premier League winner is hoping that a good season could lead to more England caps to add to the 13 he has, the last in a World Cup qualifier against San Marino in 2012.

Aside from Van Gaal’s plans, the key for choosing Everton over Villa was the Goodison manager. “I’ve worked with Roberto Martínez before at Wigan and was excited to get back with him,” he said. “Everton have got a great squad with great fans and a lot of history so it was a decision that was easy to make to come here. Just at the end of the season I got back in the England squad and I want to get some more caps, obviously.”


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: Cleverley Does It
PostPosted: Fri Jan 13, 2017 4:51 pm 
Offline
General of the Army
General of the Army

Joined: Mon Sep 15, 2008 11:53 am
Posts: 31161
Location: Milton Keynes
Quote:
“I think you do not have a better English player. Technically, he is as good as you get. The way he executes, how he reads the game, for me he is one of the most sensational you are going to see in Premier League history. I wouldn’t sell him for any money in the current market. I want to see him go from strength to strength because I know there is so much more to come.”

Neither Roberto Martinez nor Tom Cleverley will be at Everton to mark the one-year anniversary of that quote in early February. Less than a year after one manager labelled him priceless, another deemed him surplus to requirements and rubber-stamped a loan away from the club. Presumably, Ronald Koeman did not consider Cleverley to be either a) sensational or b) the most technical impressive English footballer; he has probably seen Adam Lallana play, or several others for that matter.

Martinez is not alone in believing he has seen something in Cleverley that the rest of us have missed; Roy Hodgson chose him as his England No. 10 at the start of the 2012/13 season and described him as “an attacking midfield player in the same way Cesc Fabregas is”, a claim which now seems ludicrous as Cleverley heads to Watford on loan for the second time in his career. At 20, he was a promising youngster on the cusp of breaking through at Manchester United; at 27, he should be at his peak and yet most of us still have no clue whether he is any good at all.

Cleverley has started just 113 Premier League games in seven seasons in the top flight, one campaign with a woeful Villa the anomaly in a series of bit-part roles. England’s former No. 10 and potential homegrown Fabregas has scored just 11 goals, which makes it doubly amusing that then-Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood predicted he would score ten goals every season if he joined him in the Midlands on a permanent basis. Oddly, he was not tempted.

When the list of managers showering you with superlatives includes Martinez, Hodgson and Sherwood, it’s tempting to think Cleverley’s sheen is fools’ gold, but this is the player described by Sir Alex Ferguson as “probably the best midfield player in Britain, potentially”. There are enough caveats in that sentence to suggest doubt on Ferguson’s part, but the message was clear: This kid’s special. And yet, you will struggle to find a football fan who now sees Cleverley as anything other than a joke figure. Some will laugh and splutter the words ‘Xavi’ or ‘Iniesta’; others will chuckle as they remember the TC23 brand; most will just ask ‘but what does he do?’

And that’s essentially the problem we have with judging Cleverley. He admitted as much himself in 2014 when he said in a far-reaching interview: “My job goes under the radar at times. I am not a player who’s going to beat three or four people and stick it in the top corner or go round tackling people like Roy Keane.” When you defend yourself with a list of things that you can’t do, the battle is probably already lost.

What Cleverley clearly needs now is a settled position, and perhaps that is what Watford have offered. Even at Everton last season, he played as a deep-lying midfielder, a No. 10, the left side of a midfield three and as a left-sided attacker. His ever-changing position skews his statistics, but they hint at what our eyes have consistently told us – he has no USP. Like a budget Jack Wilshere, Cleverley has lovely feet and vision but we are left wanting more, something measurable. Nine Premier League assists in seven seasons is woeful from anybody who has ever been mentioned in the same breath as Cesc Fabregas.

“It’s important when you are young to play in a couple of different positions. It helps you get into starting elevens and he can do that,” said Steven Gerrard in 2012. What was an asset at 23 is a curse at 27. For Cleverley’s sake, we can only hope Watford have a clearly defined role in mind for the best English player of his generation.

Sarah Winterburn


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 282 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 11, 12, 13, 14, 15

All times are UTC [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Majestic-12 [Bot] and 9 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to:  
cron