Top Flight Cooper is an excellent player but I don't think he fits Stam's play out from the back approach. He's too uncomfortable on the ball.
He can play at Championship level, but it might need to be with a different team and different style.
Cooper is an old fashioned, traditional centre back.
Agree with this, think it will be up to him to prove he can adjust his game to Stam's satisfaction. If he can't then he'll be out on loan/sold in January/next summer and we'll be looking for another option.
George_ Just don't get the people that are moaning about the way we are playing. This is a new team with a new way of playing and will take time, but having watched last season and the absolute rubbish we we were playing in that diamond i will happily watch us keep 80% possession, win the game and not concede again. They will only get better and better after playing together more and getting used to this style of play.
They moan 'cos we aren't going forward. However, whereas last season (and before under Adkins and Clarke) when we tried to play like that we didn't look comfortable and always looked like an accident waiting to happen, this season we actually look like we want to ball and actually try to play it out intelligently when an option appears (rather than just getting fed up and lamping it up top to no one in particular).
One hopes they will eventually see the difference and the sense of impending doom that accompanied any form of backward/crab passing under Adkins, Clarke and McDermott will soon leave them and they can appreciate it more.
True test of it though will come when we've got teams pressing us at tempo and not giving us an inch of space or second of time to think. In the top leagues usually the technical ability and speed of thought of better players will shine through in those cases. Whether we have any of that in sufficient quantity remains to be seen.
Overall though, last night was frustrating that we can't totally kill off opposition.