Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Valencia sign Herrerin

Valencia have announced the signing of Iago Herrerin on a free transfer as he was a free agent following the long term injury to Jaume Domenech, who is expected to be out until around March.

Herrerin is a Bilbao youth product who broke through into the first team but was mostly back-up to Kepa. He played most games in the 2018-19 season before being displaced the following season by Unai Simon. Loan spells followed before he spent last season at Al Raed in Saudi Arabia. He joins us after a successful trial with a contract till the end of the season with an option to renew for a further season.

I see some fans on social media criticising this. What's wrong with Mamardashvili and Rivero, they say? Definitely nothing in the case of Mamardashvili, but Rivero is untested in La Liga, whereas Herrerin has La Liga, Copa and European experience. It wouldn't be the first time both keepers got injured at the same time (happened last season and at the start of Nuno's 2nd season) so having an extra experienced option as cover makes perfect sense and there were few other free agents with La Liga experience available. It remains to be seen how much he'll play, Valencia is in the super cup this season, so unlike the previous two seasons, we start in Copa del Rey at round of 32 instead of round of 128, skipping two games against 3rd or 4th level sides.

Monday, September 19, 2022

Mamardashvili renewed until 2027

In welcome news, Valencia today finished the contract renewal and upgrade of Giorgi Mamardashvili. He renews until 2027 with his release clause increased from 20 million to 100 million euros.

He joined us on loan lasy year from Dinamo Tbilisi with a buy option of 800,000 and was expected to play for Valencia Mestalla while we assessed him. However, injuries to both Cillessen and Jaume, with Rivero already being loaned out, threw him in at the deep end and he did well enough in the early games to keep his place when Cillessen returned. That prompted Valencia to exercise the buy clause.

However, doubts crept it with a few errors and after a horror show against Sevilla he was dropped. He was benched for over 4 months, during which time he became disgruntled and sought a loan out at one point. He returned to the team at the start of February and played most games after that in La Liga and unusually, the Copa del Rey as well. By the end of the season he had clearly established himself as first choice so no one complained when Cillessen was moved out. The low release clause remained a worry but having retained him this window, we now have space to play with.

The question is now about the other renewals. Guillamon, Gaya, Diakhaby, Jaume and Lato all finish contract next summer and all should be renewed in that order.

Saturday, September 17, 2022

Valencia 3-0 Celta match thread

 After a disappointing and poor performance last week, the pressure is on to get something from today against Celta. They're just above us in the standings following a mixed start. They began in disappointing style dropping 2 points to a 98th minute penalty equaliser at home to Espanyol. They also lost 1-4 at home to Real Madrid and by the same scoreline away to Atletico Madrid. However they beat relegation favourites Cadiz 3-0 at home and won 1-0 at Girona. Brais Mendes was a big loss for them in the summer, but they've retained Iago Aspas who has scored 5 goals in 5 games so far. His inexplicable omission from the Spain squad can only be down to personal disputes with Luis Enrique.

For Valencia, Jaume is out for many months and Yunus is an injury doubt for this game. On the plus side, Cavani has been training with the full squad and may make his debut tonight, though I'd expect him to come off the bench rather than start. Mamardashvili, Gaya and Thierry should all start. The biggest question is the defence. Diakhaby has been our best defender for a while now and it remains to be seen if Paulista will get another chance after being awful last week or if Comert will get the nod instead. If Yunus is unavailable then it most likely means a midfield of Guillamon and Nico, which means we may get to see Almeida start for the first time. I'd expect to see Duro or Andre start, flanked by Lino and Castillejo, with Cavani maybe coming on for last 20 minutes.

Our recent form against Celta has been good, 6-2-2 over the last five seasons, including winning both last season. Unfortunately, that counts for very little and if we have any hopes of a top half finish nevermind Europe, this is a must-win game.


So, Cavani starts to my surprise. Comert plays instead of Paulista and Ilaix instead of Nico. Both changes totally justifiable benching 2 of the worst players from last week. Also good to see Almeida, who has shown brief flashes start instead of injury doubt Yunus.

Let's hope Cavani can find his best form!

26 minutes in and both teams have mostly cancelled each other out. Our best chance has actually come from Diakhaby hitting the post from a corner. We've been trying to get the ball in to Cavani but the accuracy just hasn't been there. Thierry and Moriba both had great bits of skill but nothing resulted. Celta have had a couple of half hearted penalty shouts. Their best chances were when Comert mishit a pass and Guillamon had to commit a tactical foul and take a yellow for the team Guillamon was the villain for the second, giving it away when we were trying to play it out from the back. We've been careless in posession.

We improved in the later part of the half and lead 1-0. It was a good goal. Great work from Lino on the left holding off two defenders. He tried to beat the keeper who parried and Castillejo was quickest to follow up and finish well. Didn't see much of Cavani but I think our midfield has handled them well. Moriba has been especially good. Diakhaby, Mamardashvili and Thierry have been solid. A bit disappointed with Gaya's passing. As in previous games we've dominated possession. The main issue is that while we've done better than last week against a high press, we don't look very comfortable. Giving the ball away in risky positions hasn't hurt us so far but it will if we keep doing it. Unfortunately our team still looks unbalanced and inexperienced and seems to have mistakes waiting to happen.


49: A bit of humour. Lino's shot is blocked by the Celta player with his elbow. It was in a natural position so no foul. But the commentator says "it came off his elbow, it was beside his arm." Yes, that's where elbows usually are found.

54: Insane. Lino is clearly brought down in the box. One of the most obvious penalties you'll see this weekend and he's booked for non-existent simulation. Disgraceful decision. What's the point of VAR?

59: The referee balancing it out for his poor call? Cervi of Celta gets a straight red for a dirty challenge on Thierry.

63: Celta get a rare corner, on the break Moriba is elbowed off the ball. Nothing doing says the ref, who's been poor this half. Moriba has been constantly fouled.

68: Moriba goes off for Nico after a very solid game.

71: Cavani goes off to a round of applause. Castillejo too. Kluivert and Andre are on. Celta get a free kick in a dangerous position and Mamardashvili produces a point blank save to deny them.

74: Good few minutes for us, with Gaya's shot from range forcing a save. But we need to bury this.

79: Chance! A good break, excellent through ball from Andre, but from an angle, Kluivert just can't beat the keeper. He forces a save from a header a minute later too.

82: Marcos Andre! Another Valencia break and this time there's no mistake. With the ball played forward, Gaya is strong to challenge and the ball falls to Andre who beats the keeper with a low drive.

84: Gaya and Comert off for Lato and Paulista.

93: 3-0! Celta look tired, we've been threatening  and after our cross is cut out, Guillamon threads it through to Almeida in the box and he finishes well for his first goal.

After an even first 30 minutes Valencia grew into the game and got a deserved win to chase away the disappointment of last week. Win or lose the team is just far more enjoyable to watch this season. There are definitely areas to improve. The passing can be careless, the final ball often is too rushed. Playing out from the back is clearly the game plan but we struggle with presses and the players often make mistakes in these situations. It's hoped they'll improve with experience.

Mamaradashvili 7.5: deserved clean sheet, only suffered with a couple of mistakes in distribution
Gaya 5.5: a little disappointed with his crossing and final balls, but he redeemed himself with a key role in the second goal.
Comert 6: much improved this season though can be a bit careless with passing under pressure
Diakhaby 7: enjoying a really good run in the team. Never misplaced a pass and his positioning is always correct.
Thierry 7: Had a good day. Strong in defence and in attack with even a few flashy moments.
Guillamon 6.5: helped the team well with a tactical foul and assist, but can be a bit too carefree on the ball in dangerous positions
Almeida 6.5: his first full game and it was a solid one with good passing and a goal
Ilaix 7.5: probably his best game for us, a commanding presence in midfield 
Lino 7: a flair player, good involvement in 2 of the goals. Can still be too selfish but given his contribution can be forgiven for that today.
Castillejo 6.5: a continual threat on their wing and moved well. Took his goal confidently. He's now the team's top scorer!
Cavani 5: a quiet, almost disappointing debut. He worked hard but had little of the ball to work with.

Nico 5: filled the hole in midfield but wasn't that productive 
Marcos Andre 6.5: good sub appearance, making their defenders work and taking his goal well
Kluivert 6.5: very lively presence. Didn't get a goal but it's coming, needs to maintain this level.
Paulista 5: late sub, didn't have much to do but looked better than last week
Lato 5.5: late sub but covered well 

Saturday, September 10, 2022

Rayo Vallecano 2-1 Valencia match thread

Valencia come into this game after a morale boosting thumping win over Getafe. Prior to that game, many questions had been asked about whether the team could, for all the improved play and possession the previous game, actually get shots on target, let alone score goals and they answered in emphatic fashion. But in the end this is only one game and the team in fact still has 4 points less than Bordalas did after his first four games which included a 4-1 win at Osasuna, so we need to see this sustained across several games before we can get excited.

Rayo's start has been patchy. They started well against the Barcelona teams, getting a draw in Nou Camp before winning at Espanyol, but then they lost at home to Mallorca, with Kangin Lee getting a goal and assist. The last game they lost to a 90th minute winner at Osasuna. It's been an unproductive ground for Valencia to play at, our last win there came in December 2014 in the Copa del Rey while the last league win was in May 2013. 

In team news, Jaume got a serious injury and may miss most of the season. The club is evaluating the option of signing ex-Bilbao keeper Iago Herrerin as cover for the season. As one of the only free agents with La Liga experience, he's the obvious choice. Diakhaby and Marcos Andre have recovered from their injuries and are available, while Paulista and Gaya are back. On the other hand, Ilaix is suspended after his sending off last week. 

Gaya and Paulista come back today replacing Lato and Comert. Cavani is still training and not involved yet.

4 min: And Valencia are behind already. We tried to shepherd the ball out for a goal kick but got dispossessed, we gave away a soft foul in a dangerous position and poor defending meant they scored.

10 min: we've struggled with Rayos' press and have given the ball away too cheaply leading to them having the better chances.

14 min: shambles at the back. We lose the ball easily in midfield, Trejo totally owns Paulista with a turn and has the whole goal to aim at. Mamardashvili parries, Rayo have the chance again but Thierry blocks on the line. So nearly 2 down.

17 min: Alvaro Garcia accelerates, beats Thierry and Paulista (who's had a terrible game so far) but his centre is cut out by Diakhaby.

18 min: Musah gives it away with a sloppy pass in midfield, they're in again all too easy, and Mamardashvili has to put it behind for a corner.

25 min: Valencia have a rare spell of possession, but for the second time, Gaya overhits his cross which sails out for a goal kick.

28 min: cooling break and Valencia need to work something out. Midfield non-existent, getting totally overrun, mentally slow and getting easily dispossessed and rarely able to break out of our first third.

32 min: no change. Rayo still have us pinned back. They get their 5th corner (we've had none) and Mamardashvili punches away.

34 min: the ball bounces over Paulista and Rayo are in. Thierry body charges the Rayo player over in the box. Correctly not a penalty though I've seen ones like that given.

36 min: Valencia's first corner, but Nico flicks well over.

37 min: Valencia move it about well, but yet again Gaya messes up with his cross. They've been awful today.

39 min: Lino needs to learn to pass the ball. He gets it in a good position but dribbles into trouble. Needs to be more of a team player.

40 min another good chance for Rayo. Dangerous free kick and they head just over.

42 min: Castillejo fouled. I nearly forgot he was playing as, like Duro, he's barely had a touch

45 min: better! Valencia's corner is pushed out, we keep possession, Nico's shot is well charged down. It falls to Duro who volleys over though it was probably offside.

HALFTIME: We're lucky to be only one down. There were few positives there with Mamardashvili and Diakhaby saving a couple of dangerous attacks. It's hard to believe we've had 56% possession as they've dominated us.

46: Lino loses it but Thierry is strong to cover.

47: Valencia with the best chance yet, good work by Castillejo in taking out 2 defenders, Musah's cutback gives Nico the whole goal to shoot at but he puts it over.

51: Terrible. Trejo gets past 3 of our players. Nico brings him down. We give away an unnecessary corner and with no danger, Nico slices it into his own net. Why isn't Almeida on instead? 0-2

54: Heart in mouth as Paulista gets owned yet again. Camello with a good chance blocked. We get the corner clear but after the ball spins across our area, luckily no Rayo player there to get a touch but they're pushing for a third.

57 Thierry is brought down in a dangerous position. Commentator thinks we'll be missing Soler. Why? He never hit a useful free kick that I remember. Gaya hits it and at least gets it on target but it's easy for the keeper. Marcos Andre has come on for Nico.

61: Valencia have a couple of corners without creating anything. Lino, as usual, dawdles on the ball, tries to dribble a bit and loses it, there's a dangerous counter on which Mamardashvili has to come way out to clear. Someone with the initials GG needs to have a word with Lino.

64: Good free kick put in which Paulista heads just over. Kluivert and Lato on for Duro and Gaya.

70: We move it up the field well, but Lato overhits his cross with Andre waiting in the centre.

72: Cooling break. It looks like we've switched to a 4-4-2 with Kluivert and Andre up front but nothing much happening. Rayo at least have run out of steam a bit but they should be ok with a 2-goal lead.

76: good interception and pass from Diakhaby finding Andre but a poor first touch lets him down and the danger passes.

78: Mamardashvili saves us again, that's Rayo's 6th shot on target, we've had 1. Almeida on for Guillamon.

82: A good run from Lino but again, instead of centring it, he selfishly takes a shot which the keeper easily covers.

92: DIAKHABY! A good few minutes from Valencia. Almeida centres from a free kick and Diakhaby knocks it in at the back post. Too little, too late.

A poor and really flat performance after the high of last week. The team showed their inexperience against a high press in the first half and got overrun. Really a 1-goal loss flatters us. Rayo hadn't won at home in 9 months but beat us so easily. The questions being asked before the previous game return.

Mamardashvili 6: saved us on a couple of occasions. Without him it would have been more.
Thierry 4: mostly covered his side well, but also lost possession in some dangerous areas.
Paulista 1: awful return to the side, constantly out of position and failed when needed, hard to believe that Comert looked better.
Diakhaby 5: best of the defence, cut out a number of dangerous balls and grabbed a consolation at the end.
Gaya 3: sluggish return and his crossing was abysmal in this game, ruining some promising chances.
Guillamon 4: overrun with the rest of the midfield, needed more presence this game.
Nico 0: poor in midfield, missed one of our best chances and scored their winner. Can it get any worse?
Musah 4: was full of energy but his passing was off and never got a chance to link up in any meaningful way
Castillejo 3: had a couple of good link ups at the end after an invisible first half.
Lino 3: has ability and is a good dribbler but way too selfish. PASS THE BALL!
Duro 3: forgettable day, though he was starved of any service.

Andre 4: more lively than Duro and posed more of a threat but the final touch wasn't there.
Lato 4: an improvement on Gaya, especially in the passing sense.
Kluivert 4: limited time generated some moments of danger and forced a save from the keeper
Almeida 5: limited time but performed well in the brief period he was on and got a good assist.

Sunday, September 4, 2022

Valencia 5-1 Getafe match thread

 It's half-time in the Mestalla as I write this. In terms of playing style Valencia had started the season much better, unfortunately only 1 win and 2 defeats were the results. A big question before this game was if Valencia could actually create anything, as we'd only created 3 shots on goal from open play. 

The answer so far has been an emphatic yes. Valencia have dominated Getafe, blitzing them with 3 goals in the opening 16 minutes. Besides the good result so far, the team looks to be playing with bags of confidence, stringing passed together and generally looking very with it. Castillejo and Lino, 2 players who've been criticised so far in the season, have played well and contributed with goals. Whatever the result today, it's much better to watch this version of Valencia play.

The match finished 5-1, a deserved result. Super performances from Lino and Musah and it was good to see the youngsters doing one touch and accurate passing rather than the "kick it upfield and hope" anti-football we saw last season. A few negatives, with both Marcos Andre and Diakhaby going off injured and Musah limping around a bit at the end, though in the case of him and Diakhaby it didn't look so serious. I only counted one Diakhaby mistake from a misplaced pass and he went off to a round of applause. Comert also made a couple of important interceptions. A run of mostly winnable games coming up. Let's hope we can maintain this level

Thursday, September 1, 2022

Transfer window closes

It was a busy transfer window at Valencia, with 8 departures and 8 additions.


So to add to the previous post, Soler left. The fee was reported to be 18 million plus a possible four more in variables. Since he and Guedes contributed 22 goals and 11 assists last season so the pressure is on for the new additions to do that. A disappointing sum but as in so many cases, the club let contract renewal drag on too long and were forced to cash in for less than half of what he's worth.

Quite a few of our fans are disgruntled at the emotionless way that Soler left. Not a hint that the last game would be his last, no message to the fans and a shrug of the shoulders as he flew off to Paris. True, he's getting a lot more money, but it contrasts with the emotional exits of Cancelo and Parejo and the respectful one of Rodrigo.

In the end Tottenham refused to loan us Bryan Gil, who put a cryptic message of disappointment on his social media. Instead, the club added Justin Kluivert on loan with a 15 million buy option. He's said to be pacy and promising but not the finished article, with errors in his game. Hopefully he'll do better than his dad who managed 202 minutes played in a season where he was out injured almost the whole time.

In a surprise move, Valencia brought back Ilaix Moriba for another season's loan. His last season was a bit like Soler's recent form: utterly average and a lot of the time you simply forgot he was on the pitch. It's hard to be excited about his return, the only memorable thing I can think of was his assist in the cup final. 

3 other departures were confirmed. Maxi Gomez heads off to Trabzonspor. Again the fee is shockingly low. Valencia paid 17 million plus Santi Mina (valued at at least 15m) for him. Yet the asking price went from 12m to 9m to Valencia finally saying they were getting 6m, only for the Turks to leak that it was actually 3m. Meriton's negotiation stinks and then they complain we have no money? Maxi's transfer seemed a great idea at the time. Only 5 players had scored more than him in La Liga in the 2 seasons before he arrived: Messi, Suarez, Greizmann (who were all out of our price range) and Stuani and Aspas who were 33 and 32 respectively and also were penalty takers. Adding one of La Liga's young proven goalscorers should have worked out great, but he was mostly a flop.

Manu Vallejo, again a player we paid 5.5m for, was let go on a free to Girona. You'd think they could have at least got some cash for him, but nope. He was a player in the mould of people like De Paul, Bakkali etc, a fan favourite who never won the confidence of any manager and who had to make to with a bit part in the team as a late sub. Marcos Andre, who was linked with a departure, stayed in the end as Gattuso believes he's a player he can work with.

Racic has gone on loan to Portugal for the second time, this time joining Braga for the season. With all the new midfielders added he'll get more playing time there.

The day's most positive news is that Mamardashvili accepted the new contract, so is now part of the first team with an extension until 2027 and a release clause of 100 million, upped from the 20 million release clause that made us vulnerable to losing him.

Both Mata and James Rodriguez were linked. In the case of the latter I'd probably pass. Stories from Saudi are that he's not the player he was 5 years ago, is lazy and has increasing discipline problems. Having made his money at Real Madrid, motivation seems to be a big issue. Mata returning on a free would be a crowd pleaser and would add experience, though Meriton seem disinterested. So while it's still possible to add him, I'd be very surprised if it happened.

All in all, while it's good we made some additions, I'm not convinced the squad is stronger or in a position to challenge for top 7 and Europe let alone Champions League (out of the question for me barring a miracle.) The team did add in the 5 positions necessary: defence, defensive midfield, midfield, wing and forward but most of those players are young and inexperienced and we have to hope they step up to fill the shoes of the experienced departed. Andre Almeida and Cavani are the ones we most need to produce and in the latter's case, that means avoiding injury which is not a given, and getting service (also a longterm problem.)

Ultimately, while I hope I'm wrong I don't expect us to improve on last season's 9th place. I think the big three will be there as usual with Betis or Villarreal most likely to take 4th. I'd expect Bilbao and Sociedad ahead of us. Our main hope of Europe would rest on us or one of those teams winning Copa, Sevilla doing exceptionally poorly and some of the pretenders like Celta, Rayo, Osasuna etc not sustaining form across a season. In that scenario we could get 7th. Fingers crossed but with this ownership all I see is short term thinking and mediocrity.

Tuesday, August 30, 2022


 It's been a long time without updates as I've been on holiday or working. So here's a summary.


Cheryshev's contract finished at the end of last season. While he had some quality moments, his time here was too inconsistent and marred with injuries. He has yet to find a new club.

All 4 players who'd been on loan (Helder Costa, Moriba, Alderete and Bryan Gil) returned to their parent clubs. The first two were no surprise but with Valencia's frailities at the back, there were calls for us to exercise the 7 million buy option for Alderete. In the end he joined Getafe instead and will probably be back at the Mestalla next game. Bryan Gil continues to be linked with a loan return for a year.

Koba was loaned out to Oviedo. He's shown flashes of potential but needs extended game time and with new additions in our midfield he clearly isn't going to get that this season.

Jesper Cillessen was also moved out, returning to his native Netherlands. Like Cheryshev, his time was us saw him injured and unavailable far too often. With Mamardashvili showing good quality after a shaky start he was not needed. The swap with Neto, which seemed a good idea at the time ultimately turned out to be a disaster for all parties as Neto spent his time at Barcelona on the bench before joining Bournemouth on a free earlier this month. 

Easily the biggest loss of the window was Guedes. While this was expected, it was still frustrating as he had finally started to show consistent form and was constantly a goal threat. The fee was also a bit on the disappointing side at 33 - 35 million plus around 4 million more in add ons. The problem was that PSG were due to get 25% of any fee above 40 million so the clubs settled for below that. It seems at best a sideways move for him, as Wolves are struggling and highly unlikely to make Europe this year.

At the time of writing, Soler's future is up in the air. This is another tough one. The club are offering a 5-season renewal but the problem is that mentally, the player seems to have been elsewhere the last few years. His performances have been inconsistent. Again, the issue is a disappointingly low transfer fee being offered by PSG: 15-17 million. It puts Valencia in a tricky position because if he refuses to renew, then the club may just have to take the cash rather than lose him for free next summer. Plus, Valencia allegedly still owe PSG from the Guedes signing. Great things were expected from Soler when he made his breakthrough. He's been a solid player but not the game changing one we hoped for.

Maxi Gomez looks all but gone with only the fee with Fenerbahce to be negotiated. Marcos Andre also continues to be linked. Another disappointment and would also free up a non-EU spot. Manu Vallejo lastly seems surplus to requirements as no coach has trusted him to play him enough.

For once, Valencia did most of their business in good time rather than scrambling around in the last hour on 31 August.

Samu Castillejo was the first player to join on a free from Milan. He did well in pre-season but has looked iffy in recent games with his crosses often overhit.

Samuel Lino and Nico have joined us on season loans from Atletico Madrid and Barcelona. The second has only made late sub appearances so far so it's hard to say. Lino has shown flashes of quality but also has shown a greedy streak so the jury is out.

In defence, Cenk Ozkacar joined us on loan from Lyon. He's supposed to have potential but hasn't played yet and with the injuries to Paulista and Diakhaby and Comert error-prone it's a real surprise this position wasn't reinforced more seriously.

Valencia's only money spent on a transfer was 7.5 million on Andre Almeida from Vitoria in Portugal courtesy of his Portuguese agent whose name needs not be spoken. He's highly rated but again hasn't played yet so we have to wait and see if he can be Soler's heir in midfield.

Lastly, Valencia finally made a marquee signing with Edinson Cavani arriving on a free transfer to great expectation from fans. His scoring rate speaks for itself but there are questions of whether he can repeat it after a disappointing final season at Manchester United and also if he can avoid injuries as he will be 36 in February.

Valencia continues to be linked with another attacker with Braithwaite linked from Barcelona or a return of Bryan Gil. There have been various suggestions of a "surprise addition/return" with both Mata's and Otamendi's names mentioned. 

Valencia started with their customary 1-0 home win over a team that begins with G, beating Granada through a Soler penalty. A tight game at Bilbao followed with a disappointing 1-0 defeat. Last night Valencia put up a good showing against Atletico Madrid but unfortunately lost to a deflected goal after having a Musah wonder strike cancelled out. 

The positive that has to be said is that Valencia are playing much better football than we saw with BORE-dalas ball which had so many of us switching off last season. The team seem capable of stringing multiple passes together, maintaining possession and using a high press.

The negative lies in the following stats.
Against Granada we shared possession but aside from Soler's penalty we only had 1 shot on target the whole game.

At Bilbao we had 63% possession but managed no shots on target. Yep, ZERO!

Last night we went further, having 71% possession but only managing 2 shots on target, while for all their limited possession Atletico managed 7 on target.

So to sum up, 3 games, only 3 shots on target and no goals from open play. This is something that Gattuso urgently needs to fix. Our issue for several seasons has been producing little to nothing for our forwards to work with. It's partly why people like Gameiro and Maxi came and failed. The team needs to create something for Cavani or Duro to work with. As I said lots of times when the topic of replacing Marcelino with Setien came up, possession for its own sake is pointless, we need to create something.

I'll put at least a comment thread up for upcoming games.