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Toulouse (A) - EL Grp E, Thurs 9th Nov 2023 (5:45pm)


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Work-rate. Incisiveness. Nous.


I don't ask for much.


This is how it's gonna be. Build from the ground up.


A win in this one secures our place in the knockout stage. Note the time, as it's an early kick-off like all our European aways in the group. The last meeting in Toulouse between the teams was in the first leg of the 2007/08 Champions League qualifiers. Rafa had railed against the club's transfer market sluggishness already that summer (right after the defeat in Athens in fact), and the club responded by moving on the likes of Bellamy and Gonzalez, and also L'il Luis surprisingly. The latter did help smooth the negotiations between us and Atletico for Nando, as our No10 moved in the opposite direction in a separate deal. A tweak in our attacking approach would follow, with Nando being joined by Babel and Yossi. And our new No10 with his penchant for ponytails and shit clobber. Andriy Voronin had joined on a free and in the early weeks of the season was getting a few goals too. Like the 30-yard piledriver that won us the first leg on a scorching hot August afternoon in the south of France. His impact waned significantly after the first few months, but you can't tell me that you didn't think we might have nabbed a bit of a bargain after seeing that debut goal.


Toulouse were defensively very suspect at Anfield in the last game, but going forward they looked to counter with pace and numbers. While it was refreshing and played into our hands, the fact that they need points to get out of the group suggests they might give it the beans in this one. They have nothing Toulouse and everything to gain here (sorry!).


We have to be wary of that, and crucially (unlikely at Luton) be ready for it. Jurgen will likely go with his usual cup-team cast for this game, and keep our bigger names on the bench. Hopefully Curtis' knock is minor and he is available for this one. I'd be inclined to use Mac as one of the 8s, with Endo as the 6. We need to see what Mac can do for us there, and as he is suspended for Brentford next weekend, we might as well use him prior to the upcoming international break. Concentration, motivation, attitude and application from first minute to last please. 3 points and safe passage to the next round. Get it done!

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There is no reason not to start Mac Allister in this, due to his domestic suspension. It is probably a good thing thst Mac Allister misses the Brentford game as it gives Endo a chance to stick his hand up for inclusion for the City game. Mac Allister plays for Argentina against Uruguay and Brazil (early hours of Wednesday, British time) during the international break, prior to a 12:30 Saturday k.o., away to City. I would definitely think about not starting him in that. He struggled against Wolves in similar circumstances (granted the international game had been at altitude) and it's away to City where we might need more physicality in there. 


Why not play Jones at RB again, if fit? He did ok against Leicester there, and it gets him, and others, needed minutes but keeps most of the 11 for Brentford fresh. Dom looked fucked yesterday but surely 76 minutes midweek, in horrendous conditions, were a contributory cause of that. Hopefully the first choice 11/13 players will only play as required and if the worst case happens in Toulouse, we'll still top the group. Take Jones and Endo (and whoever else that need protecting) off early and give the kids a runout. 











Mac Allister 





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47 minutes ago, Scott_M said:

Being the super fans we are, @Captain Turdseye & I are going to this.


We’ll wave / flick V’s.

I think it was @Jennings that once posted “I’ll be the one wearing jeans” which made me laugh and ever since then I’ve said it to my kids every time I go to a game. Boss shout. 

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I'd go something like






------------Elliot--------Mac Callister



Reckon Mo will start though. 

Kill this game off tonight and the groups won and we can properly rotate after. 

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