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Thread: Next season

  1. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by Belgian Saint View Post
    I wouldnít want to have to fill your glass up, itís so empty.
    Itís my opinion, open to be proven wrong.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Pinners teeth View Post
    Well despite all the naysayers, SkyBet think we will be in the mix

    Grand Final - Wigan 2/1 Saints 11/4 Leeds 7/1 Wire 8/1 Catalans 10/1 Hull KR 12/1 Leigh 14/1
    Challenge Cup - Wigan 4/1 Saints 5/1 Leeds 6/1 Catalans 7/1 Leigh 8/1 Wire 8/1
    LLS - Wigan 13/8 Saints 3/1 Leeds 6/1 Wire 8/1 Catalans 12/1 Hull Kr 14/1 Leigh 16/1

    Some decent odds there for LLS and Cup if you fancy an outside bet
    Ah but in each of those lists it's the same team that's favourite ahead of us :-)

    Dont forget the old adage, "it doesn't matter where we finish as long as it's above Wigan" :-)

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    One thing Wellens has got to sort out is the dreadful discipline from the likes of lees, it just isnít good enough.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    Being realistic, what positives are there now? Welsby is one, probably our sole elite player now. Our squad is still strong, despite the core of it being past their prime now. So we do still have time to correct the downwards trajectory if they have the ambition to do it.

    The negatives? We're quite visibly in decline, with our key players ageing and our style of play so easy to deal with given our lack of squad depth in the pack. We have a coach who is simply out of his depth and incapable of getting a response from the players when it's needed, something Holbrook and Woolf could both do. He's also very naive tactically and we're likely to rinse and repeat the same negative grind tactics we did this season. All very reminiscent of the Cunningham era. If anything, Cunningham was probably the better coach as he didn't have anything like the squad available to him that Wellens does, yet their records will likely be similar when Wellens leaves.

    Then you've got recruitment. It's very worry how many times we're failing now. We clearly wanted a first team winger to replace Regan Grace. The club said this repeatedly. Yet we failed. The club also clearly wants a centre and again they've failed to get one. We went for a few young forwards over the last year and failed to get them as well. It's very worrying because over the next three years we're going to have to replace Walmsley, Paasi, Makinson, Lomax, Percival, Hurrell, Sironen, Mata'utia, Clark (Be amazed if he can do 2 years, never mind 3) and Mbye and possibly Welsby, Dodd and Lees if they choose to move to the NRL or for more money within Super League. With a success rate like we've got at the moment, does that prospect not terrify you? Even if the academy system does an amazing job and we fill 50% of those key players with youth players (Very unlikely), it still leaves us in a very bad spot.

    We're now in a position where our winger and centre for the majority of games next season won't be a first team level player. What happens to our results when that's the case for probably half the side, including the key positions? In fact, even just Walmsley and Lomax? What happens when they go and we don't sign anyone?
    I listed them you miserable get. Honest to god, you make toothache seem appealing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    Being realistic, what positives are there now? Welsby is one, probably our sole elite player now. Our squad is still strong, despite the core of it being past their prime now. So we do still have time to correct the downwards trajectory if they have the ambition to do it.

    The negatives? We're quite visibly in decline, with our key players ageing and our style of play so easy to deal with given our lack of squad depth in the pack. We have a coach who is simply out of his depth and incapable of getting a response from the players when it's needed, something Holbrook and Woolf could both do. He's also very naive tactically and we're likely to rinse and repeat the same negative grind tactics we did this season. All very reminiscent of the Cunningham era. If anything, Cunningham was probably the better coach as he didn't have anything like the squad available to him that Wellens does, yet their records will likely be similar when Wellens leaves.

    Then you've got recruitment. It's very worry how many times we're failing now. We clearly wanted a first team winger to replace Regan Grace. The club said this repeatedly. Yet we failed. The club also clearly wants a centre and again they've failed to get one. We went for a few young forwards over the last year and failed to get them as well. It's very worrying because over the next three years we're going to have to replace Walmsley, Paasi, Makinson, Lomax, Percival, Hurrell, Sironen, Mata'utia, Clark (Be amazed if he can do 2 years, never mind 3) and Mbye and possibly Welsby, Dodd and Lees if they choose to move to the NRL or for more money within Super League. With a success rate like we've got at the moment, does that prospect not terrify you? Even if the academy system does an amazing job and we fill 50% of those key players with youth players (Very unlikely), it still leaves us in a very bad spot.

    We're now in a position where our winger and centre for the majority of games next season won't be a first team level player. What happens to our results when that's the case for probably half the side, including the key positions? In fact, even just Walmsley and Lomax? What happens when they go and we don't sign anyone?

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    Quote Originally Posted by CaseyJ View Post
    I listed them you miserable get. Honest to god, you make toothache seem appealing.
    But they're absolute nonsense, or you're about 8? Wellens might know a lot about RL, but it doesn't make him a good coach. He's not shown any signs at all that he's going to make it. He's taken Woolf's players and Woolf's tactics and turned us from champions into losing semi finalists. Add another season of decline on and we likely won't even be in the semi finals next season unless he changes things.

    The squad has been superb and the owners need credit for that. But it's also ageing now and we need to be doing more than we are to refresh it. We're not currently even managing to replace the outgoings with first team players of any level of capability. Wing and centre just black holes and absolutely no depth anywhere.

    The stuff like the stadium and our owners are great. But neither is going to win us a trophy next season. It may well be that the club is financially no longer in a position to be on of the top sides and that would be fair enough. But until they state that, the expectation levels from the supporters isn't going to drop any.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaVenRouge View Post
    Very funny. But I've been a beacon of positivity for about five years now. But the pom poms and the tutu have come off now the club is sliding off the track full speed into mid table anonymity.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    Very funny. But I've been a beacon of positivity for about five years now. But the pom poms and the tutu have come off now the club is sliding off the track full speed into mid table anonymity.
    I thought Saddened was just a name you use on here but it’s a philosophical foundation. I’m depressed now, where is my Prozac?

    I don’t think it’s quite as bad as you do. We will finish top 4. We might win something but Wigan are favourites. In knock competitions anything is possible. We don’t actually know what Wellens can do with a full off season and a squad that isn’t ripped apart by injuries. Most of the old players you list are not dead yet. Lomax is slowing down but he is still a great half back with arguably the best brain in the business. Our pack is still dynamic even without Paasi and Walmsley

    We need to hope Dodd improves, Ritson steps up and either Vaughn or Sambou is actually ready.

    Can you still get therapy on the NHS up there in the north west?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    Being realistic, what positives are there now? Welsby is one, probably our sole elite player now. Our squad is still strong, despite the core of it being past their prime now. So we do still have time to correct the downwards trajectory if they have the ambition to do it.

    The negatives? We're quite visibly in decline, with our key players ageing and our style of play so easy to deal with given our lack of squad depth in the pack. We have a coach who is simply out of his depth and incapable of getting a response from the players when it's needed, something Holbrook and Woolf could both do. He's also very naive tactically and we're likely to rinse and repeat the same negative grind tactics we did this season. All very reminiscent of the Cunningham era. If anything, Cunningham was probably the better coach as he didn't have anything like the squad available to him that Wellens does, yet their records will likely be similar when Wellens leaves.

    Then you've got recruitment. It's very worry how many times we're failing now. We clearly wanted a first team winger to replace Regan Grace. The club said this repeatedly. Yet we failed. The club also clearly wants a centre and again they've failed to get one. We went for a few young forwards over the last year and failed to get them as well. It's very worrying because over the next three years we're going to have to replace Walmsley, Paasi, Makinson, Lomax, Percival, Hurrell, Sironen, Mata'utia, Clark (Be amazed if he can do 2 years, never mind 3) and Mbye and possibly Welsby, Dodd and Lees if they choose to move to the NRL or for more money within Super League. With a success rate like we've got at the moment, does that prospect not terrify you? Even if the academy system does an amazing job and we fill 50% of those key players with youth players (Very unlikely), it still leaves us in a very bad spot.

    We're now in a position where our winger and centre for the majority of games next season won't be a first team level player. What happens to our results when that's the case for probably half the side, including the key positions? In fact, even just Walmsley and Lomax? What happens when they go and we don't sign anyone?
    Ok, so 'being realistic' is one line of positivity and twelve of, let's say, concerns. That's the problem I see - the imbalance of some people's views ! And the concerns are generally opinions which may or may not be shared by others. E.g. after one season in which we finished equal top on points league I certainly wouldn't class Wellens (in his first season) as being out of his depth or a worse coach than Cunningham. You say that he's 'incapable of getting a response from the players when it's needed' - if you mean the semis then I refer you to Holbrook's record. I am aware of Eseh, but who else is in the 'few young forwards' you say we went for and failed to get - I genuinely don't know (if there are two or three others then fine, otherwise it's more unfounded negativity) . As to certain scenarios terrifying me - actually no they don't. It's sport, it's life, nothing is perfect. As a Saints supporter I am just interested to see how things pan out. Of course I'd love a new signing that everyone could get behind (almost impossible as some people will always find a negative) and some more enterprising play, but all things considered (many as detailed by CaseyJ in post 71 above) I'm content that we're in a better overall place than anyone else.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    Very funny. But I've been a beacon of positivity for about five years now. But the pom poms and the tutu have come off now the club is sliding off the track full speed into mid table anonymity.
    Glad that you took it in the spirit that it was intended.

    I can't say that I disagree with all of your points, and there may be a bit of "head in the sand" mentality from me for some of it

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    But they're absolute nonsense, or you're about 8? Wellens might know a lot about RL, but it doesn't make him a good coach. He's not shown any signs at all that he's going to make it. He's taken Woolf's players and Woolf's tactics and turned us from champions into losing semi finalists. Add another season of decline on and we likely won't even be in the semi finals next season unless he changes things.

    The squad has been superb and the owners need credit for that. But it's also ageing now and we need to be doing more than we are to refresh it. We're not currently even managing to replace the outgoings with first team players of any level of capability. Wing and centre just black holes and absolutely no depth anywhere.

    The stuff like the stadium and our owners are great. But neither is going to win us a trophy next season. It may well be that the club is financially no longer in a position to be on of the top sides and that would be fair enough. But until they state that, the expectation levels from the supporters isn't going to drop any.
    I will openly admit that I have been skeptical about Wellens from the first announcement he had the job. But I am willing to at least admit some of the circumstances which contributed to an overall poor season may be somewhat out of his control;

    1) a short off season wedged between a World Cup and the WCC tour. With the beauty of hindsight, I think people mistook the whole “jet lag” excuse/ fiasco and misinterpreted us simply not getting enough time for an off-season, leading to us playing catch up. Still think there was a huge motivation issue which was a Wellens problem he should have resolved, but it was compounded by us not really prepping for the season.
    2) the Dodd situation; second season syndrome, recovery from the injury, NRL seducing him, no competition for his spot - it’s a heady combination for him. I suppose you could argue that the competition for his place was Wellens fault, but those criticising Mbye forget that Dodds uptick in form at the end of the season coincided with Mbye joining and offering us a viable alternative. It is very much a ship up or ship out year for Dodd and he alone could offer massive improvement to us as a team overall.
    3) the Lussick situation; who knows what really went down but it contributed to our single worst performance in 5 years, and killed any momentum 3 big performances prior had built.

    I don’t agree with this decline narrative. Makinson is still the best winger in the league. Walmsley is still the best prop in the league. Further, they weren’t the people contributing to our performances last season. Even then, the above 3 aren’t true this season; and that alone should find another 15%. Whether that’s enough, and whether that makes Wellens the right man for the job, remains to be seen.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Infamous Grouse View Post
    Ah but in each of those lists it's the same team that's favourite ahead of us :-)

    Dont forget the old adage, "it doesn't matter where we finish as long as it's above Wigan" :-)
    Of course. Wigan are rightly favourites for all 3. They have replaced their outgoings and likely improved their starting team. As well as adding depth. My point was more about the posters with the bleak outlooks (saw one predicting 4-6). Bookies know what they are talking about generally! We beat them convincingly at TW last season, no reason why we can't again.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    But they're absolute nonsense, or you're about 8? Wellens might know a lot about RL, but it doesn't make him a good coach. He's not shown any signs at all that he's going to make it. He's taken Woolf's players and Woolf's tactics and turned us from champions into losing semi finalists. Add another season of decline on and we likely won't even be in the semi finals next season unless he changes things.

    The squad has been superb and the owners need credit for that. But it's also ageing now and we need to be doing more than we are to refresh it. We're not currently even managing to replace the outgoings with first team players of any level of capability. Wing and centre just black holes and absolutely no depth anywhere.

    The stuff like the stadium and our owners are great. But neither is going to win us a trophy next season. It may well be that the club is financially no longer in a position to be on of the top sides and that would be fair enough. But until they state that, the expectation levels from the supporters isn't going to drop any.
    I'm not stupid, I just prefer not to focus on the negative of everything.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    But they're absolute nonsense, or you're about 8? Wellens might know a lot about RL, but it doesn't make him a good coach. He's not shown any signs at all that he's going to make it. He's taken Woolf's players and Woolf's tactics and turned us from champions into losing semi finalists. Add another season of decline on and we likely won't even be in the semi finals next season unless he changes things.

    The squad has been superb and the owners need credit for that. But it's also ageing now and we need to be doing more than we are to refresh it. We're not currently even managing to replace the outgoings with first team players of any level of capability. Wing and centre just black holes and absolutely no depth anywhere.

    The stuff like the stadium and our owners are great. But neither is going to win us a trophy next season. It may well be that the club is financially no longer in a position to be on of the top sides and that would be fair enough. But until they state that, the expectation levels from the supporters isn't going to drop any.
    Far too harsh for me, he's taken a weaker team to compete throughout the season lost both semi finals by a whisker, joint top on points. When the going got tough when we lost games, he could have done a "Daryl Powell" and gone into panic mode but he didn't. All the talk of attacking style goes out out of the window when you have so many attacking players out with injuries and suspensions.

    The lack of recruitment is more about quality availability within a salary cap than signing loads of players. The team for next year is a very adaptable one, yes missing a couple of backs in a winger and a centre which we can probably manage in the short term.

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    Quote Originally Posted by STIDDY View Post
    Far too harsh for me, he's taken a weaker team to compete throughout the season lost both semi finals by a whisker, joint top on points. When the going got tough when we lost games, he could have done a "Daryl Powell" and gone into panic mode but he didn't. All the talk of attacking style goes out out of the window when you have so many attacking players out with injuries and suspensions.

    The lack of recruitment is more about quality availability within a salary cap than signing loads of players. The team for next year is a very adaptable one, yes missing a couple of backs in a winger and a centre which we can probably manage in the short term.
    All sound mitigation, and I'll praise him when he achieves. I remember praising him after we used a different style in the game against Warrington where we had almost no forwards playing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    All sound mitigation, and I'll praise him when he achieves. I remember praising him after we used a different style in the game against Warrington where we had almost no forwards playing.
    One swallow doesnít make a summer though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    All sound mitigation, and I'll praise him when he achieves. I remember praising him after we used a different style in the game against Warrington where we had almost no forwards playing.
    And the ex Barrow "black hole" winger was probably man of the match from what I saw and the pundits. So yes the passing game and flowing attack needs to be in the same vein as that game.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnathon Doe View Post
    And the ex Barrow "black hole" winger was probably man of the match from what I saw and the pundits. So yes the passing game and flowing attack needs to be in the same vein as that game.
    Did he play after that? I was all for Ritson starting over Bennison, but it Wellens saw fit to drop him and didn't bring him back and he missed about 10 games? I was amazed he kept him on, given he didn't seem to fancy playing him.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    Did he play after that? I was all for Ritson starting over Bennison, but it Wellens saw fit to drop him and didn't bring him back and he missed about 10 games? I was amazed he kept him on, given he didn't seem to fancy playing him.
    At the begining of that spell there was an interview where Wellens mentioned that he picked Bennison because he can cover different positions, around the same time it was mentioned that Lomax was limping at the end of a previous game, so that sort of made sense.

    But, as you say, he continued with Bennison for the rest of the season

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    Did he play after that? I was all for Ritson starting over Bennison, but it Wellens saw fit to drop him and didn't bring him back and he missed about 10 games? I was amazed he kept him on, given he didn't seem to fancy playing him.
    I think there was a short spell were he picked up an injury and quite a few head knocks and ended up with concussion, so Bennison was selected and Wello just stuck with it. We also had at one point 3 centres available and Hopoate had a few games on the wing.,
    Last edited by STIDDY; 14th November 2023 at 21:31.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    Did he play after that? I was all for Ritson starting over Bennison, but it Wellens saw fit to drop him and didn't bring him back and he missed about 10 games? I was amazed he kept him on, given he didn't seem to fancy playing him.
    As far as I'm aware by keeping up with what the club and Wellens were saying, it was a knee injury that kept him out, Wellens kept referring to it as a grumbly knee. I noticed it was heavily strapped for a couple of games. Then after Bennisons ankle got better he went with experience and a settled squad into the back end playoffs rather than a loanee . Don't you watch or read links and interviews?

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    Quote Originally Posted by STIDDY View Post
    I think there was a short spell were he picked up quite a few head knocks and ended up with concussion, so Bennison was selected and Wello just stuck with it. We also had at one point 3 centres available and Hopoate had a few games on the wing.,
    Hopoate recovering at the backend meant someone would have to give way because of the money he was on, Bennison having had previous playoff experience and grand final experience it seemed perfect sense to go with that and have the the trialist as back up.
    Last edited by Johnathon Doe; 14th November 2023 at 22:59.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnathon Doe View Post
    As far as I'm aware by keeping up with what the club and Wellens were saying, it was a knee injury that kept him out, Wellens kept referring to it as a grumbly knee. I noticed it was heavily strapped for a couple of games. Then after Bennisons ankle got better he went with experience and a settled squad into the back end playoffs rather than a loanee . Don't you watch or read links and interviews?
    No.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    No.
    Oh, OK. Anyway. I think Wellens had to play the safe option, Hopoate back fit and his NRL experience and his salary and Bennison who had been there last year so had the edge on experience. Any head coach would have done the same. It just fell short at the end.

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    Of course Wigan are favourites for all 3, just like we were this season. A lot of things can happen throughout the course of a season, favourites doesn't always mean winners.
    Loyal and true, not a glory hunter.

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