Archer and Stewart don't seem like either would fit the half number ten / half striker link role as well as Akpom is currently doing and neither seem like a natural little nippy closing down type striker that Forss is filling and Watmore is covering for. Unless Carrick wants to change things up and we are only setting up like this as he's utilising what he has available?
We have Forss, Watmore, Hoppe, Akpom, Muniz and seemingly Crooks to fill the two berths currently. Obviously the Teesside Haaland will be back for next season too.
I would say since Watmore's arrival we must have signed getting on for 8 strikers/forwards to replace him. It seems we are looking at a couple more, he must be moved on at some point you would think? Or is he seen as a 30 minute impact player and we're happy with that?
I will be a bit miffed if another pair of strikers are brought in after the recruitment team identified Forss and Hoppe as development strikers to bring on this season to be first team players (apparently much to our then managers chagrin), for both to be deemed not good enough five months later.
I think we probably have enough fire power if we get better supply. We have tons of competition for the the two in the middle. We have no competition at all for McGree and Jones and seemingly Giles is considered purely as a left-back now bizarrely.
I'd go all out for some athletic, pacy wide players with good assist numbers and an eye for goal. One of these can hopefully be a set-piece specialist too. Signings for the love of God, no more loans.
Muniz and Mowatt may as well be returned to their parent clubs if at all possible, but Mowatt will be extremely difficult to shift I fear. Lugouno is gone it seems, it also seems probable McNair would want first team football and Dijksteel and Bola aren't going to be first teamers either so may move on?
So Barlaser to compete with Hackney, and a couple of wingers would be sound. Then replacements for any of the above who move on.
I think we desperately need a replacement for Howson. He flatters to deceive for me, full of running, a great pro always a 6 out of ten or a bit better. But he has no pace, no goal threat, barely assists, isn't a leader or talker etc. I think he looks good in games and his performances seem of note as he is so fit, that in the latter stages of games he is still full of running and looks really involved without actually doing loads. He isn't going to go on for ever, if we can get a replacement bedded in now rotating with him he'll be fully integrated for our autos push next season
I think a big part of our failures for the last few seasons are that we just aren't mentally or physically tough or committed enough to compete in harder games. When the chips are down we buckle, we seem to concede goals in flurries at times looking like rabbits in the headlights.
McNair, Fry, Howson, Bola and Dijksteel all fall in to the category of having the ability but maybe not the 100% commitment and leadership to maintain their concentration, boIIock a team mate, smash into a tackle to save conceding a goal, bust a gut to get on the end of a set piece to win a header etc.
I'd like a few of the incoming players to be more in the mould of the competitive/*********/leaders type players than those they replace.