About “SI-EF-AR” or “To Whom It May Concern”.

In retrospect to CFR 1907 Cluj’s international “appearance”, I decided to write my first editorial in the language of Shakespeare, not only for our international fans, but for the domestic ones, too. Of course, the following text can suffer changes, corrections since grammatical and lexical errors may occur. I’m not a native speaker, though.

It’s still fun or it’s just not fun anymore? We still watch football as idiots or Costa CFR Cluj manager’s tactic is going downhill very fast? Well, a public debate, as recently on Tribuna CFR started, is necessary. Of course, watching football is a prerequisite for participating in such a public debate. Watching and apprehend, too, not only yelling.

As of a Guardian.co.uk fan, I selected over the last six months ideas and text assertions, which can help Mr. Costa, decide. Some of the old fans say his tactic is rubbish, others say, well, let’s see what “the cat drag in”.  It’s obvious, after the friendly games, we still don’t have any good tactic for the midfield. What to do after the obvious?

One of the recent Guardian’s articles say, I quote, “(…) the adoption – at last – of a modern and rational 4-2-3-1 formation gave them (A/N  – England national team) a structure that offered reliability in defence and flexibility in attack, enabling them to seize the initiative against opponents every bit as undistinguished as their recent record suggested”.

So, we underline “modern and rational 4-2-3-1 formation”, “reliability in defence and flexibility in attack”, and “seize the initiative against opponents”. Well, I still read about 4-2-3-1 over and over again. Which is better 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1, and which fits CFR Cluj?

Man United’s centre-back Rio Ferdinand says about 4-3-3 “in Europe last season a lot of the time we played three midfielders and three up top. But it depends – away from home we played that formation with two wide men, and they had to come back and when we got the ball we broke to make it a 4-5-1. So I don’t think the manager’s really bothered about formations. He just puts it out there and knows the players can deal with it.’  And that CFR Cluj played until “yesterday”. Leaving CFR for Sampdoria, Renan Garcia opened a green wound, the midfield weakness. I’m not a tactician, the 4-2-3-1 can fit CFR now, but I’m not convinced. Why? Let’s draw a dream team in this system: Beto, Lionn-Cadu-Piccolo(Maftei)-Nicoara, Muresan-Godemeche(Vranjes), Sougou-Peralta-Bastos-Weldon (Kapetanos). Ok, sounds great, but is De Zerbi’s future?  The midfield sounds nice on paper, in reality Weldon and Kapetanos only scored once in a while because the midfielders are not suitable for this system; they go around and around Muresan and they don’t deliver enough useful balls for the strikers. Why? What midfield tactics fits to our players? I hope our tacticians will answer to this Q or that you will provide any hint. I strongly believe Mr. Costa doesn’t know the right answer.

The Guardian also has a tradition to brighten the “Five things we learned from watching football this weekend”.  I selected five things to help Mr. Costa. Here they are:

1. Football’s focus on individuals is debilitating! So, football is a team game, however, and the focus on individual talents is a reductive exercise.

2.  Managers should watch their players’ wages. “There are no doubt plenty of self-motivated club owners around, but when will a manager – even a popular manager with plenty of friends in the media – be called to account?” Several teams have suffered different “form of financial meltdown” since some managers had “no interest in what players are earning. Maybe they should”.

3. Incompetence is back. Rejoice. I quote The Guardian: “At some point in the previous century Britain had a cultural awakening in the kitchen and suddenly everybody knew how to cook scallops, what olive oil is for and the secret to making your own bread. The inevitable consequence was MasterChef and Come Dine With Me on television on every single channel, though that is arguably a small price to pay if it means your steak is cooked properly. Similarly English football went through its own reinvention in the noughties, embracing Arsène Wenger’s appreciation of broccoli, 4-2-3-1 and zonal marking. The end result was Rafael Benítez and José Mourinho serving up some right dog’s dinners whenever Liverpool and Chelsea met, but still, just look at the tactics! We were so sophisticated, darling. Not any more. Now it would appear the meat and potatoes are back on the menu, with games between the top sides this season defined by defensive incompetence instead of strategic elegance. The ’90s are back, which is not necessarily a bad turn of events. The football might be farcical, but at least it is entertaining, as the Liverpool v Newcastle tribute match between Chelsea and Manchester United proved. Already this season Arsenal have put five past Chelsea, Manchester City have scored five and six against Tottenham and United, who in turn beat Arsenal 8-2. Asked about Arsenal beating Spurs 5-4 in November 2004, Mourinho cocked an eyebrow, smirked and said: „5-4 is not a football score. It is a hockey score.” Sure, but this retro-football is better than a dour tactical 1-0. Dig in.

4. Football scouts pick out a disproportionate number of blond players, “presumably because the colour catches the eye. This is known as an ”availability heuristic” – when information stays in your memory even though it’s irrelevant”, The Guardian says.

5. Football fans are idiots. He may look like an idiot and talk like an idiot but don’t let that fool you. He really is an idiot” – Groucho Marx. “Football fans are idiots. Or, to rephrase that sentence using less incendiary language: when it comes to football, intelligent people act stupid. And yes, that probably includes you”…and me, too.

Concluding, my dear followers, will Mr. Costa read between the above lines? Which system is better, and why? Or should I ask “why fans riot, whether their team win or lose”?


0 comentarii

  1. Since english is not mr.Costa’s native tongue, perhaps you should rewrite the article in portuguese 😀 Otherwise, thank you, it was funny, yet educational. Signed: one of those idiots.


  2. Hehe, it’s elementary (yet, original), my dear Che(f)! 4-3-3 and 4-2-3-1 it’s like the difference between pizza with and without onion! 🙂

    Cea mai tare faza, Che, e sa pui chrome-ul sa-ti faca traducerea in romana. Pun pariu ca nici nu banuiesti ce-ai scris, de fapt. 🙂


    • My dear Albu,
      The Chrome translation says: „Traducerea nu a reusit din cauza unei erori de server. Incercati din nou.” 😀 So my dear friend…I will try again later…or when I will be in the mood to understand and review what I’ve wrote so far… Untill then…I’m just a blind writing on my laptop while eating a pizza with bloody onion! He, he! 😛


      • Che, tu de felul tau cam discreditezi instrumentele bune precum browserul cromat? La mine chiar daca mi-a zis ca nu-si permite sa te traduca tot te-a tradus. Probabil nu stie mai nou sa-si traduca singur mesajele. 🙂

        Cat despre articol, daca invatam si echipa noastra sa „vorbeasca englezeste” prin joc asta chiar ar fi o minune mai mare decat toate cele infaptuite pana acum la Chefereste 🙂


        • He, he..nu discreditez…imi place tot ce e cromat! LOL…nu pe masina, pe net, of corse. Io blamam un anume server, indiferent care este el. Cat despre englezeasca in fotbalul din Gruia…io sper sa invete sa manance pizza cu ceapa mai repede decat fara, desi nu e preferata mea, mie-mi place quattro formaggi (iui, ce-am zis…:) )…intelegi, nu? 😛


  3. Costa promised us that we will see good and spectacular football.
    From what I could see in the last 3-5 years at CFR, is not the coach’s violin that plays there.
    I don’t even dare to think how long he last at CFR if he weren’t a Portuguese?
    Maybe CFR did not find the proper coach yet.
    But, like or not, CFR takes the second place (which is good), has good players (good again), but they don’t play the way everybody expects (which is bad) or I could say, we have no idea what kind of tactic they apply(good for them, bad for us), and … so go on.
    We are CFR fans and we yell, comment and watch football or theater or…!


    • 🙂 So, which is the best, „good for them, bad for us” or „bad for them, good for us”. I choose the thisrd one, „good for them and good for us”, but like you say, probably CFR didn’t find the proper coach…yet. Will Mr. Costa be the one? He doesn’t have to be the Special One 😛 , he should only be The One. 🙂
      Go, go SI-EF-AR!


  4. Folbalu’ asta la care ne pricepem toti ca si la politica de altfel 🙂

    Eu cred si asta e parerea mea deci nu e litera de lege ca JC joaca FIX cu ce are la dispozitie si daca suferim undeva calcaiul lui Ahile e la mijlocul terenului. Il putem invinovati pentru asta pe JC ? Nu cred si argumentez asta prin faptul ca altceva mai bun nu are iar semnele de la „imparatie” i-au transmis clar ca se poate linge pe bot daca viseaza la unul (de ce nu doi) mijlocasi de creatie,”nu sunt bani si cu asta basta,te descurci cu ce ai…”
    Bun trecem mai departe si revenim la acele sisteme de joc propuse de unii, altii p’aici sau oriunde altundeva .
    4-2-3-1, 3-5-2 nici nu cred ca conteaza uitandu-te la Barcelona care joaca in epoca Guardiola,acelasi plictisitor si in aceelasi timp previzibil 4-3-3…Ii bate cineva ? Da,accidental si eu cred ca doar in prisma faptului ca baietii de acolo s-au cam blazat ,de ce inving mereu si pe deasupra fac si spectacol atunci cand au chef ? Fiindca au calitate jucatorii si orice sistem ar avea in fata pentru ei conteaza mai putin sau deloc. No cam asta e parerea mea si daca sunt carcotasi care ma pot convinge de contrariu eu ii astept cu drag 🙂
    Cat despre intrebarea ta de final de ce sunt suporterii vesnic nemultumiti indiferent de rezultate sau clasamente?…am si la asta un raspuns da poate cu alta ocazie caci nu vreau sa starnesc iara un val de nemultumire pe’aici


  5. Dear Chefere:

    To answer your question I think it is „good for them, but bad for me” because you forgot about me lol 🙂

    Almost a year and I’m still waiting for you know what 😉 lol
    boo cfr!

    liltigressa 🙂


    • God is my witness, I did not forgot about the prize! I can only appologize for the huge delay, but again, the club’s marketing is a mess. The online store was closed, the big city store became a small one with not „what I’m looking for” etc. I was able to onor the „you know what”..only if I would crochet it! 😉 I have a promise from some guy…which promise me the same thing on Christmas..and so on. But you will get what you are waiting for, and a bonus for your patience and understanding before Easter, even if I have to crochet it! I appologize!

      PS – boo CFR, NOT! Go CFR!


  6. Aud din nou ca mijlocul ar fi problema la acest moment…..eu vad putin altfel.Daca exista intradevar minusuri in jocul echipei,acestea n-ar trebui trecute exclusiv in culpa celor de la mijloc.In momentul in care mijlocasii au obiectul iar fundasii stau pe pozitiile lor,atacantii ascunsi dupa cateun adversar,este clar ca solutiile se reduc exponential.Putem vorbi eventual de un nivel actual al echipei…..nu cred ca sistemul folosit poate sa faca diferenta in acest moment,ci calitatea jucatorilor.De pe actualul loc(2 din clasament)nu cred ca ne putem plange de rezultate…..cat de spectacol!Iar aici este o intreaga discutie de ce este mai important,rezultatul sau spectacolul?deci….


    • Ai spus bine, mijlocul e problema, nu mijlocasii Atacantii ma gandesc ca stiu la nivelul acesta sa se demarce, mai ales daca le analizam background-ul. Calitatea jucatorilor face diferenta pana la un moment dat, s-a vazut si in tur, se va vedea si mai bine in cupele europene A|colo ai nevoie de coeziune in lot, de echipa, nu de individualitati, care sa ne fie iertat, nu sunt la nivelul marilor echipe din afara. Acum poate ca ne-am mai omogenizat, ramane intrebarea de ce nu comunica cele 3 departamente bine intre ele, de ce nu circula cum trebuie balonul? Admitem ca pentru Liga 1 avem lot valoros, deci unde e problema? Sa fie doar de omogenitate? Pana la urma conteaza rezultatele, in dauna spectacolului, mai ales in ziua de azi, desi…vezi ce afirma cei de la The Guardian…


      • Cineva trebuie sa lege jocul, cineva care sa faca tranzitia din aparare spre atac,pana la urma sa faca chiar si spectacol sa dea o pasa (mai multe pase) decisive ,eu cred ca asta lipseste CFR-ului actual .Fiindca in afara de Peralta si poate Vranjes nu vad pe nimeni in lotul actual care ar putea sa faca asta. Fiindca si jocul uneori(de multe ori) haotic al echipei este rezultat din lipsa acestor mijlocasi,acestor jucatori de creatie


  7. Yeyeye a castigat El TOro:) cu 2-1 a batut echipa lui Renan, care mi a placut tare mult cum a jucat!
    o sa ne lipseasca forte mult… redevenim o ochipa de mitici pitici..


    • Da, ne va lipsi…desi nu cred ca e de calibrul lui Pereira…sau mai stii? Oricum, eu il tineam pana in vara, daca e bun, ar fi fost mai scump din postura de campion, insa cine stie ce minuni au in minte astia de la club?


  8. Dear All,
    I have just read that Liviu Ganea joined CFR, which is a great thing, albeit a surprise at the same time. I am not sure what to make of this article, which says that Weldon is leaving for China for another million Euros, but we shall find out the truth soon enough:
    Nevertheless, Ganea is a promising chap. I loved his goal against FC Brasov, when he tricked the entire defence with a repeated simulation of withdrawal and then used the element of surprise and shot on target whilst turning around:
    His headers against Vaslui and Rapid were also brilliant: both into the left corner. In fact, it was a double against Rapid.

    Well, I do hope he will find his place here and will score some memorable goals. We shall definitely need them during this season!


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