Some have noticed John Lundtram’s reduced effectiveness this season. It’s been subtle, but he’s produced less tubthumping tackles, less interceptions, and less of his raking passes.
He’s dominated the middle a lot less than he did earlier this year, and it’s taken eagle-eye observers to point it out.
We’ve alluded to it ourselves, and it’s become clear that John Lundstram’s role has been changed, and it’s not a good change.
For some reason best known to Gio van Bronckhorst, the manager has put Lundstram into a more advanced midfield position, the slot he was weaker in when he first joined under Gerrard, the slot which lost his place, and the slot he played alongside Davis who instead took up the deeper position.
Once Davis lost his place through injury, Lundstram started taking that deeper slot for his own, and before long he was owning matches.
At Easter Road, the map shows he’s as much advanced as he is deep, with a marginally stronger presence in Hibs’ half.
At Dundee, in another away match last season, the difference is obvious. Heavily concentrated in our own half, doing the digging.
This latter position is where Lundstram thrives, and the difference between his effectiveness in both slots is becoming more clear.
He has far from been rotten this season, but we have noticed more instances of his being careless with possession, more instances of him losing the ball, and a lot less of that crunching play which punctuated earlier this year.
Whatever Gio is telling him to do, it’s hamstringing him considerably because he’s far better deeper and turning the screw, rolling the sleeves up than he is playing more advanced.
But what the hell do we know, we’re just talking **** as usual!