'Filling Out' / 'Bulking Up'
There have been a few comments recently to the effect that the club have always thought Colback at least as good a footballer as Henderson, but have been reluctant to give him games because he took longer to 'fill out'.
Similarly, there were spells last season where we couldn't buy a goal and even a few games where we had no fit strikers at all, and we wouldn't play a lad who can't stop scoring at youth and reserve level because 'he sill needs to fill out / bulk up'.
Now I can see that in some positions bulk and strength are important attributes that you can't do without, ie centre halves, target men and certain styles of defensive midfielder.
But in forward and creative positions it's not a prerequisite IMO and in some cases extra bulk and weight is a hinderance more than a help.
If you are a quick striker or creative midfielder, surely nimbleness and agility are more important than 'filling out'.
Smaller players get the better of their opponents by throwing them off balance, using their agility, touch, technique, speed, balance, etc. An extra stone of muscle won't help them with this.
It's no wonder our players are technically deficient when we prefer gym monkeys and mini hulks over footballers, and tell them it's about improving their physique rather than technique if they want to get games (it's not just SAFC where this attitude prevails).
Some players are better players before they fill out or bulk up because their game is about skill and agility. Owen, Fowler, Fat Ronaldo are all examples who were better players before they 'bulked up'.
Can you imagine Barcelona telling Iniesta to put on some muscle before they'd pick him? He still hasn't filled out yet, does anyone think an extra stone of muscle would improve his game?
Technique over physique every time for me like.