Vital Swansea City contributors Ottawa_swan and Senhin have given Vital Leeds the lowdown on our loan signing from the swans Alan Tate.
Tate has spent ten successful years with Swansea, helping them from a relegation dogfight at the bottom of League Two to the Premier League.
What are his strengths and weaknesses?
Strength is his experience and positional sense in the box. Weakness is his speed (he doesn’t have any!) and so the ability of wide men to get around him easily.
He’s got good positioning, but a bit slow and possibly on the decline, though that could well be more not having played much in a long time rather than old age, because he’s not that old, so could pick up with more playing time
What is his best position?
Best position is easily centre back in a back four, and mostly on the right. Speed problem mentioned above, means he is not great at left or right back. He doesn’t really work in midfield, as he’s not an intricate passer.
He’s not a full back, even if he has been played there, he’s too slow for it.
Are you disappointed that he has not been given much of a chance this season?
Not really disappointed as when he did get a run-out (against Everton) his lack of speed showed up. Having said that, he could be used as a backstop against teams that don’t have speedy wingers and do have big guys using their heads in the middle.
I’m not disappointed as I’d definitely go with Williams and Chico above him, then I’d probably give Bartley some playing time, then there’s Monk who I feel is still pretty good and he’s always determined and a good commanding presence.
Then I’d probably play Ki there, as he makes some good tackles and we have others who could come into midfield. In addition, I think I would like to see Situ given a game over Tate as well, if we were to get that far into our reserves.
He’s nowhere near our first choice defender, but seeing has he was signed as a short term emergency loan I think he’ll be okay. You have to remember we’re judging him at Premiership level at the moment. Back in the championship, I think he will be an okay emergency cover for you.
Having no real playing chances at our club (aside from a possible rustiness in the first game or two), he will be making the most of first team chances.
I think he will really go for it and at least work hard for you and just enjoy being playing again. He is a bit slow, but he has pretty good positioning, and I think positioning is probably more important in a centre back at championship level than speed is.
Centre backs being quick is much more important when you are playing against world class, tricky strikers like the Aguero’s etc.
Basically, I don’t think you should be too worried. It’s not like you’ve bought him and he flops, he’s just there to hopefully ease your problems until your first choice defenders are back to performing.
Best describe him in three words
Experienced, solid, calming influence (whoops, sorry that was four words!)
Experienced, eager and ginger.
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