Illarramendi hype

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Post by Mr Nick09 Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:15 pm

From Phil Ball, who according to him, is the perfect replacement for Alonso in Madrid, ahead of the Gundogans, Verrattis and etc...

The real gem, and the one that Marca bizarrely failed to mention, is Asier Illarramendi. Permit me to take a deep breath, because in ten years of writing this column I've tried very hard to not make over-the-top statements (they tend to come back and haunt you, down the line), but if there is something approaching an Alonso clone, or to push the envelope further, a potentially better player still, then this is the guy. I've been watching Sociedad for over 20 years now, and Illarramendi ('Pea mountain' in Basque) is the best thing I've seen since Alonso. The whispers are that Barcelona have already made their move, because they see him as a better Xavi-clone than Thiago. Xavi or Xabi? Only time (and euros) will tell.

There are parallels. Like Alonso, Illarramendi is quiet and discreet, and was slightly tubby in his youth. In footballing terms, he has started at the opposite end of the central midfielder's continuum to Alonso, in that his basic instincts are defensive and his ball-distribution is what you notice next. With Alonso, as with Pardo, it was the other way around. But Illarramendi, still only 23, perfectly epitomises the second most wonderful quote from Spanish football, from Jorge Valdano. "Hay jugadores quien, si les dejas en un bosque sin brujula, siempre saldrán. La mayoria se perderá". (There are players who, if you leave them in a forest without a compass, they'll always find their way out. Most players will get lost.) It's the perfect description of the good central midfielder. If you play on the wing, there is always time and space, and one guy to worry about. But the central midfielder is always surrounded by trees. He has to constantly find space, he has to find a way out. Only a certain type of player fits this mould, and he rarely needs pace, or even a great physique. They can be tubby but mightily effective. Think of Jan Molby in his later years.
http://espnfc.com/columns/story/_/id/1404174/ball:-clones-from-pea-mountain?cc=5901

It's true that Illarra has probably been Sociedad most influential midfielder all season long but didnt see him THIS good but then again, i am only second guessing myself because Phil Ball is a fantastic writer and i respect his opinion a lot. I did read similar praises from the catalan press about him though, strangely.

Arq, Dani, Hala, Z etc, are we missing out on something?
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Post by Zealous Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:22 pm

I think we all know what Arq's answer is going to be :I'munoriginal:

Anyway Ball is a La Real fan boy so I have trouble taking his opinions seriously on certain players however there is no doubt that Illarramendi has been having a great season and along with Pardo has made Sociadad's midfield a very good one.

Can he replace Alonso? Maybe he has all the tools but he doesn't have the hype mostly because the way he plays is not very high profile from what I have seen.

I think he's good and if we did sign him we could definitely do worse than him.

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Post by futbol Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:24 pm

You have Godric. Why would you sign anyone?

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Post by sportsczy Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:26 pm

I've watched quite a bit of Sociedad lately because Bein Sport has carried their games in France... this article is way over the top. Good player though. But there's better out there.
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Post by Zealous Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:32 pm

futbol wrote:You have Godric. Why would you sign anyone?

We're looking for someone young who would be OK with not being a starter according to reports. Someone to replace Xab's role in the team when he eventually leaves.
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Post by Zealous Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:36 pm

sportsczy wrote:I've watched quite a bit of Sociedad lately because Bein Sport has carried their games in France... this article is way over the top. Good player though. But there's better out there.

Ball is such a fanboy when it comes to La Real. From what I've seen of La Real I like Pardo more and Prieto has been their best midfielder this season. Also Zurutuza has more of those hollywood quarterback passes from what I have seen.

Not hating on Illarramendi, he's good but Ball is making him sound like the heir to Xabi a bit too soon imo.
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Post by Onyx Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:39 pm

We don't really need to buy a playmaker to replace Alonso, since we already have Modric.

Marca linked us with DM type players like Fernando, Javi Garcia and Kondogbia, which is the type of player we should get to partner Modric.

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Post by Zealous Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:41 pm

Fernando is good, I'd prefer Paulinho or just staright up sign Hernanes though :wub:

----------Hernanes--------
Khedira------------Modric-
--------------Ozil-----------

:bow:
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Post by phenom Wed Apr 10, 2013 12:53 am

i would rather have a pure DM ,an upgrade in defense over alonso and then play him with modric

DM
modric
ozil isco

striker cr hmm
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Post by Mr Nick09 Wed Apr 10, 2013 12:56 am

yeah, it's about what i thought, i didnt see him being that good, although better than Khedira :coffee:
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Post by sportsczy Wed Apr 10, 2013 1:34 am

Since Bein carries a lot of La Liga games, i'm watching a lot more. Seeing it in HD gave me incentive... Madrid or Barca v other La Liga teams are not indicative because they have to play gimmick tactics to contend with the talent of those 2 teams. But when you watch La Liga teams play their game... i have to say, it's the best league in the world. The tactics, technique, imagination, etc are just a step above. So much fun.

Such a freakin shame that the media rights sharing is so jacked up and the league/referees are a joke. With better marketing, this league could easily dominate everything. As it is, they already dominate in the game.
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Post by Zealous Wed Apr 10, 2013 1:38 am

Fully agree. The actual football on show is really fun to watch but the atmosphere surrounding it is what is holding the league back.
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Post by The Franchise Wed Apr 10, 2013 1:41 am

Well first of all I think, whats the point you guys getting him? He will end up like so many others considering the options you already have in midfield.

As a player, I have not seen Sociedad as much as their season deserves. Though I did watch them vs Malaga, I knew that would be good.

I heard before him being called "the closest thing to Xavi"...which is intresting, but I remember when Gerard Lopez was the next Guardiola...he was a talented boy too, but sometimes it just doesnt work out.

So I would just say lets wait and see. From what I see, I see a pretty talented player though, clever, moves well, is available and naturally is technically gifted.
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Post by Zealous Wed Apr 10, 2013 1:46 am

Would you trade him for Thiago? Ball seems to think it's possible.
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Post by The Franchise Wed Apr 10, 2013 1:53 am

I highy doubt it.

Even if he was "better", why would we want to take the chance? We seen what Thiago can do for us, all that is missing is more time.

Who knows what Illaramendi (who is also older I might add) will do?

Would be pretty odd.

Unless Cesc goes and Thiago gets pushed forward. Which also wont happen but the only possible way I see another midfielder arriving.

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Post by Arquitecto Wed Apr 10, 2013 2:59 am

About time Andonegi gets some recognition. Reason he doesn't is that his contribution to La Real has been a relative surprise. Initially he was deployed to replace the absence and leadership of the retired Aranburu yet his game has evolved the Sociedad Legend DM. He isn't like Xabi for Madrid but closer to Montolivo for Milan or Cabaye for Newcastle. Capable of running a midfield, distributes long and wide to spread space wonderfully, has a killer final ball and a solid shot on him. Whats important is how defensively astute he is in anchoring the midfield whilst pushing forward even under pressure. His greatest strength is under pressure and the composure that follows suit.

Is he the Xabi replacement? No because someone like Ruben Pardo is closer to Xabi than Illaramendi. Pardo hasn't been afforded too many chances since he is defensively weak in the midfield yet lights up the pitch everytime, hence the general disgruntled opinion towards Montanier in this aspect. Pardo is the jewel of the midfield in terms for the future as Illaramendi has been more of a surprise.

Zurutuza another surprise for La Real as his laser sharp passing and vision has been excellent yet where he fails is that he is too static.

Illaramendi's presence is touted vital since Sociedad look much worse without him as which is why he is praised by Ball so much. He does so many thing subtle or obtuse its difficult to measure his importance in total.

Has he been Sociedad's best player? Preito takes that title by a mile.

As for Xavi, closest thing to him is Verrati in terms of playing style.
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Post by VanDeezNuts Wed Apr 10, 2013 3:59 am

i'd rather take camacho if madrid are looking at relatively young and inexperienced MFs

especially considering malaga may have a fire sale at the end of the season.

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Post by BarcaLearning Wed Apr 10, 2013 5:15 am

Jesus, wow, u guys really know your stuff Very Happy Thumbs up Great reading this thread :bow: Hope to learn more from u guys as time goes Embarassed

So since Thiago was mentioned, do u guys think he will be able to replace Xavi? Hes improved constantly and this showings recently seem to suggest that hes still not up to it obviously, just a different type of player to me as well...

If real are looknig to replace Alonso, surely Barca are looking to replace Xavi too... the football scene is so open nowadays since Im sure the 2 clubs will be fighting over the best prospects when they emerge?

I also love to read Ball, just fun and insightful Cool
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Post by Mr Nick09 Wed Apr 10, 2013 11:40 pm

The Franchise wrote:

I heard before him being called "the closest thing to Xavi"...which is intresting, but I remember when Gerard Lopez was the next Guardiola...he was a talented boy too, but sometimes it just doesnt work out.

So I would just say lets wait and see. From what I see, I see a pretty talented player though, clever, moves well, is available and naturally is technically gifted.
where did you hear that may i ask?

@Arq, you are such a homer dude, not in a bad way and its normal. always thought there was something about that dude, worth keeping an eye on him
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Post by The Franchise Wed Apr 10, 2013 11:53 pm

I cant remember...I think Balague said it.
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Post by Mr Nick09 Wed Apr 10, 2013 11:56 pm

ah balague, probably shouldnt have said it...>.>

I have heard people calling Koke the next Xavi too, it's a thing of fashion these days
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Post by windkick Wed Apr 10, 2013 11:56 pm

futbol wrote:You have Godric. Why would you sign anyone?

They love over signing for every position.
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Post by Rebaño Sagrado Thu Apr 11, 2013 12:05 am

Lol Vela has been Sociedads best player. He is top scorer and assister. He has been consistent through out the seaon.

Illara has been good and done his job well. But like sports said there are better and younger players out there. Maybe I'm just blind but I dont see all the hype.
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Post by Mr Nick09 Thu Apr 11, 2013 12:07 am

A mexican fan telling me Vela has been their best player, of course bro, get in line Very Happy
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Post by The Franchise Thu Apr 11, 2013 12:09 am

Yeah I heard Koke too, I really dont see it.

Actually when I think of it, I dont think people realise how rare it is for 2 players to be alike.

Like literally, how many players "play like" someone else?

I think Aguero plays a bit like Romario used to...it feels like I seen Falcao in someone before....Iniesta and Zidane have some similarities in style I guess..but yeah, its not common for players to be like someone else.
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