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Re: Squad Numbers
Post Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:15 pm
Posted by Wires71 on Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:15 pm
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Jimathay wrote:
I think it's important to look at what version of a Wire team Patton has been a part of. He broke through into first team at the "beginning of the end" of the Tony Smith reign in 2015. Our amazing 2010-2013 squad was no more, and dross was replacing quality.
Asotasi, England, Penny, Russell were our 2014 signings.

Without opening the can of worms, it's fair to say the dressing room was probably not a great place to be during this time. Popular players leaving under a cloud, Smith with his favourites. Patton himself was frozen out for a chunk of time after falling out with Smith.

Now consider age. You could point the finger at some senior players for not delivering during our bad spots, but that environment is not great for a developing 20/21/22 year-old. We signed the reigning MOS, a 21 year-old who was also named in the 4-nations team of the tournament just before arriving. He looked a different player under TS and went backwards.

We have one of the best academy's in the country, and we go out to sign young talents too. While I wouldn't go as far as saying we ruined talent, we could never seem to nurture it once it reached the first team.

Off the top of my head, GOB, Laithwaite, Rhys Williams, Matty Blythe, Tyke McCarthy, Rhys Evans, Gene Ormsby were all given a ton of first team minutes, none progressed. Even when times were good. These players may never have been destined to be world beaters, but our youngsters historically seem to stop developing once they get a squad number.

I'd even throw Myler in that list as a young talent signed who never really progressed in our first team.

It's worth mentioning that Currie and maybe Chris Riley for a period bucked the trend. Cooper too, but he left for the NRL at the right time to miss out on the dreaded Warrington development sticky patch.

Why is this important? Because Steve Price is now our head coach. Under Price we've seen T King properly break into the first team and develop well. Philbin too has looked our most impactful interchange. Clark is somewhere near back to his MOS form. And the list continues with some of the more senior players too. Price is bringing something different. Price is giving the players structure, coaching and renewed confidence.

Patton is still only 23. He's had a pretty crummy time in his early development, but it's not time to throw him on the scrap heap yet.


All decent points. But to continue the debate.

1. Surely we cannot say with any credibility we have one of the best academies in the country when you look at the output. The vast majority end up either not breaking into the side or off playing a lower standard after a number of games? For the avoidance of doubt Currie was developed by Wigan and Riley was so good that when he left Warrington aged 26, in his prime, he could only get in Wakefield -> Rochdale's sides. Yet you cite Riley as bucking the trend.

2. If we accept the idea that the environment was not in place for Patton to flourish since debut, what have you seen that encourages you that he will flourish in 2019 and is a raw talent worth persisting with? Do you think he has progressed in 2018 under Price when compared to 2017? In 2016 he started at Old Trafford in the GF and played the vast majority of the game, scoring our only try. In 2018 he played 19 minutes when he replaced an injured Roberts.

3. As SC highlights, this does not explain how better players have broken through in more difficult times. Patton had the opportunity and one of the best British halfbacks in the last 20 years as a mentor. Speaking of Briers, he made his breakthrough at a crumbling stadium, in an under performing side where players were not getting paid on time.
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Re: Squad Numbers
Post Thu Dec 06, 2018 7:30 pm
Posted by rubber duckie on Thu Dec 06, 2018 7:30 pm
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The only thing that persists is your agenda on Patton.
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Re: Squad Numbers
Post Thu Dec 06, 2018 7:39 pm
Posted by Terry Griffiths on Thu Dec 06, 2018 7:39 pm
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Not fair, Duckie. There are lots who feel that Patton has not progressed at all. If he left us, he would not go to Wigan, St Helens, Cas, Hull. He might go to Leeds but that says more about their recent bizarre recruitment than it does about him. He is not good enough to give us the half back spark we need. A lot is resting on Austin's shoulders.
Re: Squad Numbers
Post Thu Dec 06, 2018 7:40 pm
Posted by Jimathay on Thu Dec 06, 2018 7:40 pm
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Wires71 wrote:
All decent points. But to continue the debate.

1. Surely we cannot say with any credibility we have one of the best academies in the country when you look at the output. The vast majority end up either not breaking into the side or off playing a lower standard after a number of games? For the avoidance of doubt Currie was developed by Wigan and Riley was so good that when he left Warrington aged 26, in his prime, he could only get in Wakefield -> Rochdale's sides. Yet you cite Riley as bucking the trend.

2. If we accept the idea that the environment was not in place for Patton to flourish since debut, what have you seen that encourages you that he will flourish in 2019 and is a raw talent worth persisting with? Do you think he has progressed in 2018 under Price when compared to 2017? In 2016 he started at Old Trafford in the GF and played the vast majority of the game, scoring our only try. In 2018 he played 19 minutes when he replaced an injured Roberts.

3. As SC highlights, this does not explain how better players have broken through in more difficult times. Patton had the opportunity and one of the best British halfbacks in the last 20 years as a mentor. Speaking of Briers, he made his breakthrough at a crumbling stadium, in an under performing side where players were not getting paid on time.


1 - Probably a fair call-out. An academy is only as good as the quality of first team players it produces. In which case by my own logic, it's not a very good academy! I am still of the view that our academy itself, and our effort (be it financially) to bring in talented youngsters from around the country is up there with the best. I did a quick search for a couple of articles I remember reading about the make-up of the England Academy Squad a few years back, from around the time I was describing (Currie, Laithwaite, GOB, the Evans twins all there etc), and in 2010 we were the second most represented club behind Wigan. In 2011 we were the most represented. I guess there are more barometers of what makes a good academy, but certainly that crop of players were identified as the most talented young English players at that time.

2 - Has he progressed under Price this season? Honestly difficult to answer, as he's not played enough in the halves. If you pointed a gun at my head, I'd have to say no, based solely on what I've seen on the pitch. In my view, our best HB paring last season was Roberts and Brown, so Dec doesn't play when all's fit and available.

But what have you seen that encourages you that he will flourish in 2019 and is a raw talent worth persisting with?
Price did single him out when he arrived as someone he was very excited to working with (or on). Dec signed a new contract this season. The noises from both him and Price were positive. I would wager Price has been working with him on the training ground to fit better into his style, with the trade-off being he had to be patient last season, maybe slot in at interchange 9, but he will get his chance. He'll no doubt rotate more with Brown getting more rests this season. If Steve Price talks the guy up, and thinks he's worth persisting with, then I'm on board with that.

Price: "I understand he'd like more game time but winning teams are all about (the) team first, and that's what breeds success. He is playing a solid part in and around our team at the moment. Being a local junior and there still being a lot of improvement in Declan for many years to come, he's a player we did not want to lose."

3. Yep - cannot disagree with anything sally cinnamon says. But just because Harris, Sculthorpe and Briers flourished in trying circumstances, it doesn't mean every player can, or should. It's a bit unfair to say "If Paul Sculthorpe can do it, why can't [insert another player]?"
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Re: Squad Numbers
Post Thu Dec 06, 2018 9:23 pm
Posted by sally cinnamon on Thu Dec 06, 2018 9:23 pm
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If a player can't flourish in trying circumstances, is he the type of player that fits our ambition? I guess it depends on where our ambition is. Given our record of near misses in recent years surely our ambition should be, to be Super League champions, to be the best team in the country. That means the likes of Harris, Briers and Sculthorpe are the type of calibre we are looking at.

But also lets be honest about these "trying circumstances" - he's played in three major finals already! He came in to a side that topped the league and reached two finals in the same year, he played in a Grand Final in about his 17th Super League start. And this year he's been in two more finals. How many other young players his age have had those opportunities?

Look at the experience Daryl Clark had at the start of his SL career playing in Millward's Cas at the bottom of the table, or Danny Walker at Widnes. A genuine talent can shine in a team that is struggling.

Yes you may think this is harsh and yes Patton may be good enough to have a SL career, I agree he is. But I think he's in the calibre of player who can be a first choice starter at a lower SL team or a squad player at a team like Warrington. If our ambitions are to be the best team in SL, he isn't the quality of player that will get us there as a starter.

GO'B is in the same category, but I think he is a better player than Patton.
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Re: Squad Numbers
Post Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:59 pm
Posted by Jimathay on Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:59 pm
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sally cinnamon wrote:
Look at the experience Daryl Clark had at the start of his SL career playing in Millward's Cas at the bottom of the table, or Danny Walker at Widnes. A genuine talent can shine in a team that is struggling.


But this was the exact point I made. Clark was a genuine talent who had flourished at a bottom of the table Cas and had that experience of adversity, but then came to Warrington at a crummy time for us and STILL struggled and fell away massively when he arrived.
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Re: Squad Numbers
Post Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:36 am
Posted by thepimp007 on Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:36 am
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Jimathay wrote:
But this was the exact point I made. Clark was a genuine talent who had flourished at a bottom of the table Cas and had that experience of adversity, but then came to Warrington at a crummy time for us and STILL struggled and fell away massively when he arrived.


From an England fans point of view I genuinely think we have missed out massively on what Clark should have been. He has been nowhere near the player he should have been. Maybe all the rumour about him wanting to be back in Yorkshire at the start didn't help. This year he has been superb but in a completely different way and style to the player that won the MOS, yes players need to adapt and change their game to suit but for me he genuinely should have been Englands bench 9 then starting 9 for years with and then taking over form Roby. I wonder how he will look back on his career when it is done
Re: Squad Numbers
Post Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:42 am
Posted by sally cinnamon on Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:42 am
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Jimathay wrote:
But this was the exact point I made. Clark was a genuine talent who had flourished at a bottom of the table Cas and had that experience of adversity, but then came to Warrington at a crummy time for us and STILL struggled and fell away massively when he arrived.


Not really, he wasn't Man of Steel but he didn't fall away. He seemed to manage to play well last season. Are you saying that things at Warrington were that bad that nobody could be expected to have played well? Someone must have been doing something if we got to four finals. Ben Currie came through at this time and was showing international form before his injury problems. Toby King also came through and has established himself in the last year or so.

If a player is really top quality, he doesn't need excuses making for him. We will see over the next couple of years, if Patton really is a top class halfback able to lead a team to the SL title he will either force his way past Brown this year or will leave and go to another club and dominate there. But if he ends up moving on and being a so-so player in a mid/low ranking team, perhaps the story will develop on here that he COULD have been a great, just those early days when he came through and things were 'difficult' at Warrington must have ruined him forever!
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Re: Squad Numbers
Post Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:38 pm
Posted by ratticusfinch on Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:38 pm
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Class shines through regardless of circumstance/teammates, how many more excuses is he going to get...HE IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH!! Someone name me one, just one blinder he's had for us. I don't mean a game where he's done the basics well and played well....I mean a stormer or even one absolutely class pass or kick will suffice. All the coaching in the world or playing him alongside the Kangaroos will not give him an extra yard of pace or help him make decisions half a second quicker.
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Re: Squad Numbers
Post Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:47 pm
Posted by Wires71 on Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:47 pm
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rubber duckie wrote:
The only thing that persists is your agenda on Patton.



Or your agenda with singling me out?

Note how you always fail to enter reasoned debate on the subject and just issue proclamations which, with hindsight, have shown time and time again to be not worth the keyboard you mash them out on. :D
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