Oldham Athletic’s recent performances give positives and negatives despite overwhelming defeats
They have lost every pre-season game and league game so far but pulled off a 3-2 win in the Football League Trophy against Liverpool U-21s. The Latics really got to show what they were about against a weaker opponent.
The victory proved that there are class and quality in the squad to be worked with. Segbé Azankpo proved to a clinical finisher and Chris Eagles were heavily involved in attacking play throughout. This is Oldham’s threat.
Their organization in maintaining pressure and defending is lacklustre, leaving holes and gaps to exploit at the back.
Oldham’s situation is somewhat similar to that of Man Utd last season. Their weak defence stops the attack from progressing confidently and without fear. Solskjaer now has Harry Maguire and Aaron Wan-Bissaka, and the Reds put four past Chelsea on the opening day of the Premier League.
How can Banide fix his squad?
Of course, Banide cannot be blessed with such an investment. But a recognized manager like himself should be able to get the best out of the defence he has. By giving his current defence a structure and system to go by on a weekly basis, the talented attackers in the side would have more freedom. This would result in the Frenchman’s side improving, winning and gelling as a team.
In the early days of the season, it would be unfair to judge the new manager. He has come into a difficult position at a struggling club. But their defeat against Crewe and their victory over Liverpool U-21s proved that the side has a bit of bite about them when they attack.
If this can be utilized throughout the season, whilst defensive philosophies are upheld – we could still see Oldham Athletic blossom this season.
Unlike other managers in recent years, Banide should be given time to implement a system and a squad that can progress the club further. Unless they get relegated, of course.