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Does anyone else get the feeling that we’re just not quite as fit as most over squads? I genuinely believe that the quality we have matches most others in this league but for 2 years (maybe Cocu’s style) we just aren’t quite up to speed. I watch Leeds today and like them or loath them (probably the latter) their speed of play is light years ahead of us - in part the quality of some of their players, but equally they simply seem fitter than us?

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11 minutes ago, Vienna said:

Does anyone else get the feeling that we’re just not quite as fit as most over squads? I genuinely believe that the quality we have matches most others in this league but for 2 years (maybe Cocu’s style) we just aren’t quite up to speed. I watch Leeds today and like them or loath them (probably the latter) their speed of play is light years ahead of us - in part the quality of some of their players, but equally they simply seem fitter than us?

Agree, we seem miles off the pace and it’s no coincidence that we concede late goals. 
 

Rooneys got 60 minutes in him on a good day, he’s blowing out his hoop afterwards, general fitness and conditioning just doesn’t appear to be there

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We looked knackered at around 60mins yesterday and even with 5 subs to use we didnt use them.

During the first lockdown all the talk was that the lads were doing even morr than asked but when they came back it didnt look like it, or they were asked to do nothing!

During preseason the coaching staff pointed to Leeds, Fulham & Brentford's running stats last season and that we needed to start to putting that same output on the pitch.

So what I can see is we talk a very good game but dont execute what we say & practice in the slightest. What the reason for that is I dont know, the players we have clearly have ability but that isnt and never has been enough at any level of football.

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Funnily enough, I was thinking exactly the same while watching the Leeds game earlier - it’s depressing how far they are ahead of us, in all areas. Our fitness has been a problem ever since Lampard left imo. On numerous occasions, we’ve been a level below our opponents, which has been the major cause of some of our defeats. You’ve not got much hope when you’re second to every ball and have no energy going forward. You’d think we have a team of OAP’s like under Rowett when you watch us sometimes, which, as we know, couldn’t be further from the truth.

I don’t blame Cocu necessarily though, it’s more the responsibility of the fitness coaches. Of which we didn’t appear to have many, which was probably the problem. Under Lampard we had that former Chelsea fitness coach working for us, and you could see the benefit. Pretty much every week without fail we looked at maximum fitness, which was a big contributing factor to our playoff finish. We seemed to be missing that last season. We’ve brought Shane Nicholson in now to hopefully fix that issue. Must confess I’ve not noticed much difference as of yet, but it might take time, I’m no expert in high level sports fitness 😂

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I have thought none of our resent squads have never been truly fit, not since the one from the  2013/14 season. This is the last season Clough took the team for pre-season training, he may not have been good enough tactically to get the best out of the players but he could get them fit.

It probably hasn't helped that for one reason or another every pre-season since has not gone as planned, with the disruptions caused by the change of managers and  the delay in bringing in new players.

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I think this is why Shane Nicholson has gradually been given a larger role since getting the job (1 month ago?).

Wasn't there a stat last season (maybe even this season) saying we press less than any other team in the league? It was possibly a consequence if having Rooney and Martin in the same team. Then this season we had Davies at CB and didn't want to leave any gaps for him to be exploited by pace. These are the sort of players we need to keep out of the team.

Press early and you win the ball back with fewer defenders in front of you, resulting in more goalscoring opportunities. We can't press earlier until we're much fitter, and drop Rooney.

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10 hours ago, Vienna said:

Does anyone else get the feeling that we’re just not quite as fit as most over squads? I genuinely believe that the quality we have matches most others in this league but for 2 years (maybe Cocu’s style) we just aren’t quite up to speed. I watch Leeds today and like them or loath them (probably the latter) their speed of play is light years ahead of us - in part the quality of some of their players, but equally they simply seem fitter than us?

I think like the rest of us you should Vienna, Roll with it.

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6 hours ago, 1of4 said:

It probably hasn't helped that for one reason or another every pre-season since has not gone as planned

I really don't buy this pre season stuff where fitness is concerned. You get match fit playing matches and we are playing loads of matches, so any lack of stamina should have worked its way out by now. 

We do look unfit and lacking in pace but this has to be down to our ongoing fitness regime and/or player willingness to put the hard work in.

 

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10 hours ago, DCFC1388 said:

We looked knackered at around 60mins yesterday and even with 5 subs to use we didnt use them.

During the first lockdown all the talk was that the lads were doing even morr than asked but when they came back it didnt look like it, or they were asked to do nothing!

During preseason the coaching staff pointed to Leeds, Fulham & Brentford's running stats last season and that we needed to start to putting that same output on the pitch.

So what I can see is we talk a very good game but dont execute what we say & practice in the slightest. What the reason for that is I dont know, the players we have clearly have ability but that isnt and never has been enough at any level of football.

Leeds trained twice a day from the arrival of Bielsa 

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Just now, Rampage said:

Leeds trained twice a day from the arrival of Bielsa 

Watching Premiership games makes you realise that getting into the top three but not being Champions is generally little preparation for the top flight. Wilder at Sheff Utd says that if you do not match other teams for effort then it is unlikely that you can win games. Signing players on bigger wages after promotion can cause conflict in the dressing room. We are probably seven quality players away from having the nucleus of a side that could transition and finish outside of the bottom three in the Premiership. Fulham and WBA are struggling big time and by the looks of it the team that finishes fourth bottom this season may not need many points and that could be a sign of things to come, so there is some hope. A good number of teams in the Premiership have invested hundreds of millions over a few years and are able to attract players because of the quality that they have and the wages they pay. Having said that,  Max Lowe is playing in the Premiership and could not hold down a regular place with us. Realistically a two to three year plan is essential unless something like £50-60 million is thrown at it within a year or so. Seems highly unlikely to happen because if ffp.

 

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15 minutes ago, Rampage said:

Watching Premiership games makes you realise that getting into the top three but not being Champions is generally little preparation for the top flight. Wilder at Sheff Utd says that if you do not match other teams for effort then it is unlikely that you can win games. Signing players on bigger wages after promotion can cause conflict in the dressing room. We are probably seven quality players away from having the nucleus of a side that could transition and finish outside of the bottom three in the Premiership. Fulham and WBA are struggling big time and by the looks of it the team that finishes fourth bottom this season may not need many points and that could be a sign of things to come, so there is some hope. A good number of teams in the Premiership have invested hundreds of millions over a few years and are able to attract players because of the quality that they have and the wages they pay. Having said that,  Max Lowe is playing in the Premiership and could not hold down a regular place with us. Realistically a two to three year plan is essential unless something like £50-60 million is thrown at it within a year or so. Seems highly unlikely to happen because if ffp.

 

Great post.

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