Playing it right.
Am I the only person thinking that AVB has played his Lloris card as well as can be deemed possible?
Many a good player has been destroyed by the Premiership after being thrust into the firing-line too early, Gomes being a fine and recent example of this, also De Gea's early struggles also spring to mind.
By giving Lloris time to adapt to a new country, new team-mates and new club he's clearly taken the pressure off and enabled the lad to perform when the team aren't desperate for results, making it a smooth transition.
For me, playing Friedel for the last month should be praised, it's given Hugo the chance to acclimatise and now we should hopefully see the best of him in the coming weeks and months. Although it was a logical progression to wean him in gently, maybe other managers wouldn't have seen it in the same way and maybe would have rushed his promotion to number one, possibly putting him under unnecessary pressure when it was not required.
Brad should be commended for being a great professional and also, by all accounts, actually being a nice-guy to boot, something that is considered rare in football these days. But now is the time that our much-hyped goalkeeper gets to prove on the big stage that he's the real-deal and able to push us forwards, hopefully winning points on his own in the weeks and months to come.
I think AVB has played this situation perfectly, keeping the pressure off and introducing slowly when we weren't totally desperate for a new 'keeper can only be a good thing and should benefit the club both in the short and the long-term, maybe others will disagree with that notion, but hey, it's all opinions.
Written by Crissybwoy.