Anfield Road - Liverpool FC Forum

Football and lesser sports => Liverpool FC, football, sport => Topic started by: barticus on June 19, 2013, 12:17:42 PM

Title: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on June 19, 2013, 12:17:42 PM
Here we go....

Liverpool's 2013-14 calendar:

AUGUST

17 Stoke City (H)
24 Aston Villa (A)
28 Capital One Cup second round
31 Manchester United (H)

SEPTEMBER

14 Swansea City (A)
21 Southampton (H)
25 Capital One Cup third round
28 Sunderland (A)

OCTOBER

5 Crystal Palace (H)
19 Newcastle United (A)
26 West Bromwich Albion (H)

NOVEMBER

2 Arsenal (A)
9 Fulham (H)
23 Everton (A)
30 Hull City (A)

DECEMBER

3 Norwich City (H)
7 West Ham (H)
14 Tottenham Hotspur (A)
21 Cardiff City (H)
26 Manchester City (A)
28 Chelsea (A)

JANUARY 2014

1 Hull City (H)
4 FA Cup third round
11 Stoke City (A)
18 Aston Villa (H)
28 Everton (H)

FEBRUARY

1 West Bromwich Albion (A)
8 Arsenal (H)
12 Fulham (A)
22 Swansea City (H)

MARCH

1 Southampton (A)
8 Sunderland  (H)
15 Manchester United (A)
22 Cardiff City (A)
29 Tottenham Hotspur (H)

APRIL

5 West Ham (A)
12 Manchester City (H)
19 Norwich City (A)
26 Chelsea (H)

MAY

3 Crystal Palace (A)
11 Newcastle United (H)
17 FA Cup final
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on June 19, 2013, 06:13:58 PM
The united game 3 games in could be an interesting one, as United will have played Swansea and Chelsea by then. December looks quite a tasty month as well...with Spurs, Citeh and Chelsea...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on June 19, 2013, 10:59:55 PM
So out of the title race by the 2nd week in November as per.  :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on June 19, 2013, 11:07:07 PM
There's a surprise. The Mancs get their away game against us over during Suarez's ban. The only top club to fall inside the 6 game period.
Taggart's influence from beyond the grave pension book is still in evidence.

We haven't had a conspiracy for a while in here.  :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on June 20, 2013, 12:09:14 AM
There's a surprise. The Mancs get their away game against us over during Suarez's ban. The only top club to fall inside the 6 game period.
Taggart's influence from beyond the grave pension book is still in evidence.

Taggart never factored in Suarez's replacement though!!

(http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRzgnUX5IC0US2ED-QFSb-VAEhvzudGzyOlFY564psWfULovS70)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on June 20, 2013, 11:00:18 PM
Taggart never factored in Suarez's replacement though!!

(http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRzgnUX5IC0US2ED-QFSb-VAEhvzudGzyOlFY564psWfULovS70)

 :D   :D    :D

That's the cover of FIFA 15 sorted for EA Sports also.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on July 10, 2013, 06:57:36 AM
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2354139/Bill-Shankly-special-Liverpool-boss-remembered-Golden-Years.html
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on July 10, 2013, 08:34:20 PM
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2354139/Bill-Shankly-special-Liverpool-boss-remembered-Golden-Years.html

Another man that should have been knighted. What a legend. Its criminal to see the great men at this club throughout the years that have never received the recognition they deserve. Rival fans claim Liverpool fans always feel that the worlds against them but when you see all the knighthoods awarded to people over time you have to wonder how Shankly, Paisley, Dalglish etc never got what they deserved. On top of that you look at the cover-ups and lies in relation to Hillsborough and its easy to see why our fans often feels the worlds against LFC. It will make it all the sweeter though if we ever do reach the summit of English football again.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on July 12, 2013, 01:07:29 AM
Another man that should have been knighted. What a legend. Its criminal to see the great men at this club throughout the years that have never received the recognition they deserve. Rival fans claim Liverpool fans always feel that the worlds against them but when you see all the knighthoods awarded to people over time you have to wonder how Shankly, Paisley, Dalglish etc never got what they deserved. On top of that you look at the cover-ups and lies in relation to Hillsborough and its easy to see why our fans often feels the worlds against LFC. It will make it all the sweeter though if we ever do reach the summit of English football again.

Totally agree with every word, Juan.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on July 25, 2013, 12:04:11 AM
Magic!

http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/video/2013/jul/24/liverpool-never-walk-alone-mcg-video
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on July 25, 2013, 09:09:32 PM
Magic!

http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/video/2013/jul/24/liverpool-never-walk-alone-mcg-video

Amazing.

Not that we needed reminding but if anyone was in doubt about how big this club is or the magnitude of our support around the world then this was a timely reminder.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on July 25, 2013, 11:35:08 PM
It's amazing how enduring our worldwide support is considering our relative lack of success, the treble and CL victory apart. It's why some of us think that top ownership, CEO, and management are the least that should grace our club.

It also goes to show that the nouveau riche still have a way to go.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on July 28, 2013, 02:54:32 PM
Lad oozes class!

http://www.101greatgoals.com/gvideos/golazo-philippe-coutinho-scores-wonder-solo-goal-v-thailand/
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on July 28, 2013, 04:26:03 PM
Lad oozes class!

http://www.101greatgoals.com/gvideos/golazo-philippe-coutinho-scores-wonder-solo-goal-v-thailand/

If we could find ourselves another like that this Summer then it would be Luis who?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 13, 2013, 05:29:39 PM
Michael Owen reveals his season tips for Chelsea, United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Spurs

FORMER England striker Michael Owen has backed Jose Mourinho to beat David Moyes to the Premier League title this season.

Owen - who left Stoke City at the end of last season to join BT Sport's punditry team - believes that Chelsea will win the league this campaign.

The 33-year-old ex-Manchester United striker thinks Moyes will fail to retain the title at Old Trafford - because Mourinho cannot be matched.

"Chelsea are my favourites to win the league irrespective of transfer activity," said Owen. "The return of Jose Mourinho has transformed the atmosphere at Stamford Bridge.

"Mourinho has never lost at home in the Premier League and the ‘Special One’ thoroughly deserves his self-appointed title."

Owen was a United player for three seasons under Sir Alex Ferguson, and believes the reigning champions will struggle without the 71-year-old Scot in charge this season.

"While United have the most stable squad, the club as a whole is going through a period of transition both in terms of the manager and the backroom staff," Owen added.

"Much will depend on the form of Robin Van Persie and, if he hits the heights of last season, United can definitely expect to be in the running."

Owen also discussed his picks for the Champions League places, suggesting that Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham could all make the top four depending on their moves during the remainder of the transfer window.

"Arsenal’s prospects depend largely on their transfer activity, but if they don’t manage to secure a world-class striker, a top four position should still be achievable," he said.

"In their first season Olivier Giroud and Lukas Podolski scored a combined 22 league goals, bettering Van Persie’s initial tally in England of four – but the addition to the squad of a more prolific striker could make a huge difference.

"Spurs need to find the balance between adding to the squad and retaining the existing core," Owen said of Andre Villas-Boas' side.

"They are not shy of spending on new recruits but potentially more important is holding onto Gareth Bale among others and pushing on to the next level, which is securing a Champions League spot.

And on his first club Liverpool, Owen had this to say: "Much depends on star man Luis Suarez.

"If he goes it could be an uphill battle for Brendan Rogers who has urged the Liverpool fans to be patient over the summer months. Replacing him would be near-impossible and more than one forward replacement will have to be brought in to replicate his goals tally.

"If Suarez stays and a couple more signings join the ranks then the top four could even be within their sights.”

Michael Owen is making his predictions on www.sportlobster.com.


http://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/421779/Michael-Owen-reveals-his-season-tips-for-Chelsea-United-Liverpool-Arsenal-and-Spurs?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+daily-express-sport-news+%28Daily+Express+%3A%3A+Sport+Feed%29 (http://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/421779/Michael-Owen-reveals-his-season-tips-for-Chelsea-United-Liverpool-Arsenal-and-Spurs?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+daily-express-sport-news+%28Daily+Express+%3A%3A+Sport+Feed%29)

Does Owen understand how many make up the top four? Chelsea as champions, Arsenal, Spurs and even us to get top four, but if Van Persie fires then the Mancs will be in there also. So that's five teams in the top four and that's with totally forgetting the team that has finished 1st and 2nd in the last two seasons.

He wouldn't be trying to worm his way around our's and the Manc's fans would he? Either that, or for bloke who likes a bet his maths is bloody awful.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 13, 2013, 07:27:54 PM
Good to see Sturridge scoring a couple of goals in a behind closed doors friendly with Newcastle.

Sad state of affairs when we're looking more and more to him to be our goalscoring saviour and solution. There's no doubting his potential but does he have the mentality to realise it and he needs to start being free of niggling injuries also.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on August 16, 2013, 09:14:56 PM
I have this feeling Liverpool Football Club will surprise a lot of people this season and I am confident that Brendan's managerial skills will see a couple of players take 3-4 steps forward helping us reach the 70 points mark with room to spare. Whether it's enough for 4th or not I don't know.

That's all I had to say. You may no resume your usual service of scornful and hateful rhetoric aimed at the manager of the club I loved for over 35 years.

Have a great season, I know I will!  :)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on August 16, 2013, 10:14:22 PM
I agree Martin.

Whilst I don't believe we will get into the top 4 - mainly because Spurs and Arsenal will be more consistent than us throughout the season - I believe we'll see us getting closer to that level and being more competitive with the other 5 teams.

I think Spurs have done the best business so far in England. They've strengthen really well and imo are favourites for 4th.

I think we've done some good business too. After 3 years of declination Reina has left us and we have signed a GK for the next ten years, who is top top class in Mignolet. Extremely happy that we were the ones who were ruthless with Reina and not the other way around - just like Shankly and Paisley used to be.

Toure is a decent signing on a free. I hope we are not ultra dependent on him though but use him as cover. But his experience is useful.

Luis Alberto and Aspas are exciting signings. I'm especially excited about Luis Alberto who I think is going to be a special player. Aspas reminds me of Kuyt - which is a good thing. His tenacity and mentality are why Rodgers wanted him.

Also I am huge fan of Aly Cissokho. Of course he isn't at the level he used to be at Porto, but he is still a good player and this is a huge opportunity for him to show that he can hopefully go back to that level. He can play even further afield too and will provide Enrique with real competition.

I do believe we require another centre back and another offensive player and it seems we are targeting those areas.

Plus I look forward to see further developments of Henderson, Allen and Coutinho plus seeing how Sturridge copes over a whole season.

All of a sudden we have loads of options in attack. Sturridge, Borini, Alberto, Aspas, Sterling, Ibe, Suarez (or his replacement...)

So like Martin I am optimistic about Liverpool this season. I think 6th or 5th should be our real target with 4th being a long shot aim depending on where we are in the table in the certain periods of the season.

I keep a regular look on this forum and truly you are all a bunch of - well I'm not going to downgrade myself in saying it - but its truly pathetic.

Not even a modicum of support or modicum of optimism for the future. Support? What a laugh. Instead its non stop moaning and non stop negativity seeking ANY opportunity to feed that.

Ciao.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 16, 2013, 11:19:58 PM
5th or 6th. Great.

Were you happy with seeing a Liverpool manager 'comfortable' with there being no European football of any description on offer at Anfield this coming season?

If so, does the favour of allowing some of us to see things differently.

The saddest thing with you two is your inability to allow anyone else the latitude to see anything in a different way or from a different perspective, yet expect others to respect your rights to hold contrary views, and that your views are the 'right' ones. We get the message, you tell us often enough how wrong we are, but thanks for reinforcing the message, less we forget for a second.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 16, 2013, 11:32:58 PM
Even your mate is more upbeat and ambitious than you Edward. It's easy to set the bar low in order to achieve objectives. BTW, it's not being posted with any agenda in mind, but don't let stop you with your normal sniping, and wallowing in your superiority complexes.

No excuses insists Rodgers as Liverpool embark on a top four finish

Brendan Rodgers insists Liverpool cannot afford to look for excuses as they aim to meet the increased expectation of a genuine challenge for Champions League qualification.

The Anfield outfit kick-off the Premier League season when they host Stoke City, with a strong final few months to the previous campaign raising hopes of an improvement on their seventh place finish.

However, while many of Liverpool’s rivals have strengthened, Rodgers has found it difficult to attract quality reinforcements given the lack of Champions League football.

But the Northern Irishman remains determined to find a way of ensuring the club can return to the top table of European football.

“No doubt there will be calls for us to improve every year but that’s not new, that’s not unexpected,” said Rodgers. “It’s what you expect at a big club.

“We want to make improvements and believe we will. I believe we will be stronger this year.

“The measure will always be the Champions League and the big European competitions. I think the problem is if you start to think about it being unfair then you just anchor yourself and it’s hard to move on then.

“I can stand here and make excuses, I can say (Manchester) City have spent £90 odd million and other teams already in there have got stronger and reinforced as a group, but that won’t help my job here.

“I can make enough excuses but it’s not going to solve anything. We have got to fight for our life, with our play; play with the type of football that can maybe be different and get players in who are hungry.

“If you are in those top echelons you can maybe attract another type of player but I’m not going to bleat and moan about it being unfair, I just need to get on with the job and do the best I can.”

Having failed to lure several targets, Rodgers is hopeful of a deal for Anzhi Makhachkala left winger Willian after the Brazilian expressed an interest in moving to Anfield.

In terms of numbers, Liverpool’s squad is no better off than last year after making four signings and shipping out four senior players, the most recent of which was Stewart Downing this week to West Ham United.

“It’s unfortunate for some players but we had to do that,” said Rodgers. “We are in a situation not like some clubs, where they can just stockpile players and fill up the group and afford to keep them.

“We have had to move some out to get some in. But what we have now is players coming in with an understanding of how we work.

“We are confident in the next couple of weeks we can add to the team. And if we do that we are going to be in a real good position.

“Where we sit at the minute is a real good base and a couple of more it could really improve our chances.”

Rodgers also remains in the market for a centre-back but admits “it has to be the right one”.

And he added: “There’s a lot work that’s been done. A lot of finance has been rejigged and when he have to manage that the best we can to compete.

“But that’s the job, I knew the job I was coming into. Liverpool has to be sustainable club and I repeat four years ago it almost went into administration. So that’s the part of it.

“It doesn’t change the pressures and shouldn’t. That’s why I wouldn’t want to be at any other club.”

Rodgers must decide whether to throw fit-again Daniel Sturridge into the starting line-up today or hand Iago Aspas a full debut up front, while Daniel Agger should be fit to partner Kolo Toure at centre-back after missing Liverpool’s final two pre-season friendlies.


http://www.liverpooldailypost.co.uk/sport/football/no-excuses-insists-brendan-rodgers-5743416 (http://www.liverpooldailypost.co.uk/sport/football/no-excuses-insists-brendan-rodgers-5743416)

Fire!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on August 16, 2013, 11:45:11 PM
The saddest thing with you two is
EVERYTHING  ;D

I wouldn't even respond to their drivel Tes. I think they get their
ideas from the kids mascot Mighty Red.

Invoking the names of Bill Shankly and Bob Paisley (who led the club to
eleven league titles and seven European trophies) to bolster arguments
based on their feelings ????

Quack Quack  :-*
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 17, 2013, 04:29:22 PM
I have this feeling Liverpool Football Club will surprise a lot of people this season and I am confident that Brendan's managerial skills will see a couple of players take 3-4 steps forward helping us reach the 70 points mark with room to spare. Whether it's enough for 4th or not I don't know.

That's all I had to say. You may no resume your usual service of scornful and hateful rhetoric aimed at the manager of the club I loved for over 35 years.


I agree Martin.So like Martin I am optimistic about Liverpool this season. I think 6th or 5th should be our real target with 4th being a long shot aim depending on where we are in the table in the certain periods of the season.I keep a regular look on this forum and truly you are all a bunch of - well I'm not going to downgrade myself in saying it - but its truly pathetic.Not even a modicum of support or modicum of optimism for the future. Support? What a laugh. Instead its non stop moaning and non stop negativity seeking ANY opportunity to feed that. Ciao.


let me get this straight. 

You two suddenly re-appear (after 6 or more months gone) and post co-ordinated posts, backing each other up.......and then cuss us all and proclaim that you're gone again.

your posts are clearly orchestrated/organised.

I am gonna take a calculated guess -

1) you are one and the same person; or
2) you are gay lovers (nothing wrong with that) who love to bitch
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 17, 2013, 04:51:22 PM
Liverpool 1 Stoke 0

it's a case of, as you were from last season.

we dominated large parts of the game, against a weak side, but failed to take our chances, and were lucky on this occasion, to not squander the three points.

though we can be exciting to watch, you know, deep in your heart, that there is no balance to this type of madness. 

against sides of some quality, and tactical intelligence, we will again suffer, as we did last season.

countinho looked impressive.  Sturridge was also refreshingly fit, after only being back in training for two weeks.

life does not end with no suarez.  When I watched us last year without him, and again today, I thought we had a tighter look to the side.  I like the uruguayian, but the world does not end without him in the side.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 17, 2013, 10:36:15 PM


You two suddenly re-appear (after 6 or more months gone) and post co-ordinated posts, backing each other up.......and then cuss us all and proclaim that you're gone again.



Twas the Mother of all coincidences, and we have to be preached at when it's not even Sunday.


BTW, congratulations to the manager for single handedly securing all 3 points today. Best start to a season since we last won our opening game. Records are there to be made and broken. Carry on Brendan, the one man vinyl machine. And Joan Jett sends her love.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 17, 2013, 10:39:44 PM
Twas the Mother of all coincidences, and we have to be preached at when it's not even Sunday.


BTW, congratulations to the manager for single handedly securing all 3 points today. Best start to a season since we last won our opening game. Records are there to be made and broken. Carry on Brendan, the one man vinyl machine. And Joan Jett sends her love.


twas a mighty coincidence, that's for sure.


and yes, we sat atop of the premiership for a couple of hours today.


if only we could play every opening season game early like this one today.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 18, 2013, 10:51:20 AM
Liverpool 1 Stoke 0

it's a case of, as you were from last season.

we dominated large parts of the game, against a weak side, but failed to take our chances, and were lucky on this occasion, to not squander the three points.

though we can be exciting to watch, you know, deep in your heart, that there is no balance to this type of madness. 

against sides of some quality, and tactical intelligence, we will again suffer, as we did last season.

countinho looked impressive.  Sturridge was also refreshingly fit, after only being back in training for two weeks.

life does not end with no suarez.  When I watched us last year without him, and again today, I thought we had a tighter look to the side.  I like the uruguayian, but the world does not end without him in the side.

I know we've mentioned it numerous times before, but it is puzzling that the one thing we struggled with last season has barely had it's surface disturbed, and then it seems (or at least feels like) that if Carra hadn't forced the issue with his retirement then nothing would have changed at all.
The manager obviously doesn't rate or trust Coates, going on his actions and words, yet he's still here, and/or hasn't been upgraded or replaced. Likewise Skrtel, who couldn't displace a 35 year old about to retire, yet again it seems no action has been taken (granted, it could be not for a lack of trying) and it's always possible to improve the defensive side of the game by offering greater protection to the defence, yet Lucas is deemed the complete solution, even it seems when he's injured or suspended.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 18, 2013, 08:38:51 PM
Hopefully Toure can be a threat from set pieces this season. Not since Sami have we had a centre half who you felt could pose the opposition problems.

Good to see Aspas looking as though it won't take him long to tune into the wavelength that Coutinho and Sturridge already appear to be on, and Henderson appears to have picked up where he left off last season and is showing a willingness to get forward and get himself in goal scoring positions.

Strange as it seems, I'm starting to think that Hendo could become an important player for us this season if given the opportunity. He brings genuine energy to the midfield and is starting to look like he has got his head around what being at big club, with the associated expectation, requires of a player.

Maybe, just maybe, he may prove to be the silver lining on the blacker than black cloud that was Dalglish/Comolli's transfer policy.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 18, 2013, 10:30:30 PM

Put Your Cards on the Table Time

who do you think will finish in the top four.

I prefer to wait a few weeks, to see the various top clubs opening performances.  But I will make an early prediction.

Man City, Chelsea and Man Utd will obviously dominate the division.

City have a lot of resources to call upon.  And I always liked their manager, Manuel Pellegrini.  But when looking for new Liverpool managers, in recent years, and studying the new City boss's CV, I was amazed to find how little he has won in his managerial career.  One trophy in Europe (Intertoto Cup in 2004); and 3 or 4 titles in south american leagues many years ago.

He does not appear to be a winner in europe - instead more of a david moyes type, e.g. doing well to take villarreal to decent positions in the Liga.

Anyroads,  I am not sure how well Chelsea have done in the market this summer, but I am gonna go for Chelsea.

1) Chelsea
2) Man Utd
3) Man City
4) Spurs
5) Arsenal

let's see some predictions.
 








Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 18, 2013, 11:05:34 PM
Put Your Cards on the Table Time

who do you think will finish in the top four.

I prefer to wait a few weeks, to see the various top clubs opening performances.  But I will make an early prediction.

Man City, Chelsea and Man Utd will obviously dominate the division.

City have a lot of resources to call upon.  And I always liked their manager, Manuel Pellegrini.  But when looking for new Liverpool managers, in recent years, and studying the new City boss's CV, I was amazed to find how little he has won in his managerial career.  One trophy in Europe (Intertoto Cup in 2004); and 3 or 4 titles in south american leagues many years ago.

He does not appear to be a winner in europe - instead more of a david moyes type, e.g. doing well to take villarreal to decent positions in the Liga.

Anyroads,  I am not sure how well Chelsea have done in the market this summer, but I am gonna go for Chelsea.

1) Chelsea
2) Man Utd
3) Man City
4) Spurs
5) Arsenal

let's see some predictions.

When we were looking at a replacement for Hodgson (I think it was or maybe before appointing Hodgson), Pellegrini was one of those in the frame that Dalglish was apparently charged with looking at.
I think the thing with Pellegrini is he's never had the chance at a club that had any realistic chance of winning anything, and like Moyes, his success was therefore always going to be relative.

I agree with you Dude that the top five, based on squad strength, and the relative experience/inexperience of the managers involved sort of pick themselves. Man City, despite having a manager new to the PL have strengthened a lot, as have Spurs. Chelsea already have a strong and reasonably settled squad and Mourinho will be a rare unifying force there.
Arsenal, although you could say that sooner or later their top four run will have to end, it's been proven time and again to be a false hope, and even if they don't strengthen this Summer, they were strong enough to finish well ahead of us last season, and by not adding to the squad means it is more settled, with everyone having played together and no new integration to be done. I think it's one of the reasons Arsenal have maintained the run as Wenger doesn't add too many each Summer meaning the squad remains reasonably settled with little or no integration of new players needing to be done.

I think it's impossible to make predictions yet about anybody. 10 games in is always a good point as the league has started to settled down and patterns start to evolve that remain pretty much throughout the season with only one or two deviations.

As far as we go if we don't strengthen the defensive side of our game we could remain in 6th-8th. Yesterday was one of those games where the keeper had a blinder, the woodwork interjected itself and more controlled finishing was required, but we kept the lead.
We need to make sure that in these sort of games where goals can be hard to come by despite the possession and chances created, that we are able to maintain a strong defensive performance as that will actually become the match winning factor.
We were fortunate to a degree that Mignolet's palm out fell to Huth (I think it was) rather than someone with more technical ability but we have to make sure we neither leak a soft goal when we've had the lion's share of the game or that we don't allow ourselves to be hit on the counter attack as Arsenal did against Villa.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on August 18, 2013, 11:54:58 PM
Put Your Cards on the Table Time
I think it's all very well to speak of the resources
other clubs have and neglect the fact that we have
no European fixtures this season.

There are distractions for those clubs and sequences of fixtures
that we don't have.

Hence arguably they need deeper squad & a higher calibre of
player for the elite European competitions.

In other words, I think it's a bit misleading when the manager
equates our situation with that of other clubs. It's simply not the
case. The bitter pill of no European football should be compensated
for by better performance in the league, that would be considered
normal and expected. The problem arises if, in spite of the reduced
workload, the campaign still peters out early.

I'd argue that March was around the time to start assessing our season
& am expecting a battle to the wire with clubs such as Arsenal & Spurs.
It would be inconceivable for/difficult to justify another lesser club to appear
on the scene and be battling us in the latter stages of the season. The
goal should be to take out at least one of those clubs & unnerve the
other. Nonsense such as performance against top & bottom clubs & points
totals in periods of the season may be criteria in a debut season, but it neglects
the fact that we competed with nobody of any significance at any point
and in any competition last season.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 19, 2013, 12:26:41 AM
but it neglects
the fact that we competed with nobody of any significance at any point
and in any competition last season.

Damn, that makes very hard reading, but try as I might I find it very hard to argue with it.

I agree that the league has to be priority and that we should benefit (if that's the right word) from fewer games and no mid-week reactions from travelling to unpronounceable European destinations.
However, I don't want to see either cup taken lightly. Firstly, we are about silverware and having our name on as many trophies as many times as possible, and secondly, whilst our target I presume is 4th (from all the interviews I've read), we have to see both the League and FA Cups as a route into European competition, one that mustn't be overlooked in order to put all our eggs into one CL basket.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on August 19, 2013, 01:38:11 PM
BELIEVE!!!!!!!!!! To all ye non believers ye shall be cast out and not spoken to by Martinmarx and Edward!!!!


Rodgers senses renewed Reds belief

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers claims there is a new camaraderie and togetherness in his squad.

The Reds started this campaign with a 1-0 win over Stoke - a stark contrast to last season's 3-0 defeat at the hands of West Brom.

The pre-season has also been dominated by uncertainty over Luis Suarez's future with the striker saying he wanted a move, but that situation appears to have resolved itself and Rodgers believes there is a positive new feeling in the club.

The ex-Swansea boss told the Reds' website: "I remember last year and people saying to me 'should we be losing 3-0 to West Brom?' They were absolutely right. (no shiite-ed)

"But we've got better and better as we've gone on. It's a big job here. But I just got the feeling in the dressing room beforehand, when the players were getting together, some of our staff were saying that it just feels different this year.

"There's a camaraderie and a togetherness there. Long may it continue.

"We haven't won the World Cup, it's a game of football. But the lads are happy, they've done their job. They knew this was a big three points."

http://www.lfconline.com/feat/ed11/rodgers_senses_renewed_reds_belief_803643/index.shtml
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on August 19, 2013, 03:33:10 PM
Rodgers senses renewed Reds belief
Lol, first game of the season?

Just think, if he's saying that NOW, where he'll end up with
the rabbiting.

Sure, we could get off to a good start, some teams do, but the
league is not a sprint, it's a marathon. Calm Down Rodge.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 19, 2013, 09:59:56 PM
Optimism - the only word allowed on Anfield Road Forum. Believe.

Realism and pessimism shall be punishable my being made to watch a constant loop of every single one of Roy's pre-match and post match interviews. Then ye shall be converted.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 19, 2013, 10:09:32 PM
I'm a believer (Dude sings the Monkees hit).


Brent has been to the mountain-top, and has seen the promised land.


Who are we to argue, with the great man.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 19, 2013, 11:50:20 PM
Good to see Borini and Kelly getting 90 mins for the U-21s tonight in a 4-2 victory away at the Mancs. Borini got half our goals. Hopefully that's a confidence booster for both of them, and Kelly played centre half.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 20, 2013, 09:33:25 PM
Looks like we're adding a new coach to the U-18s setup:

Liverpool close in on Crewe Alexandra academy director

Crewe Alexandra academy director Neil Critchley is set to leave the Gresty Road club in order to join Premier League side Liverpool, according to the Crewe Chronicle.

The 34-year-old who himself graduated from the Crewe Alex academy, has been offered the role of under-18's manager.

Critchley is unlikely to turn down such an offer despite two decades with the Railwaymen as both a player and coach.

One of just 16 FA Elite Coaches in the country, Critchley is very highly-rated in the game after learning his trade under the guidance of the likes of Dario Gradi and Steve Holland.

The Crewe Alex coach is officially among the most advanced in Europe after graduating from the continent’s first ever Elite Coaches Award course.

Critchley was among just 16 from across the country to be handpicked by the FA to attend the course – the first of its kind under UEFA.

The South Cheshire club had two other young coaches selected for the course, academy director James Collins and Elite Player Performance Plan co-ordinator Michael Jolley also represented the South Cheshire club.

The qualification is equal to the UEFA Pro Licence for managers – the highest possible in the game. After 18 months of hard work the trio recently graduated, inspiring Liverpool to approach Critchley for the job.

Crewe chronicle sports editor @ThePeterMorse tweeted: "BREAKING: #CreweAlex academy director Neil Critchley looks set to join Liverpool staff. #LFC"

Critchley is expected to be announced as the U18's boss within the next few weeks, which will leave a huge void at the helm of the Crewe academy.

Fellow academy director James Collins will stay in charge of the Crewe operation, with a new face expected to be added to the coaching staff in the coming weeks.

Alex manager Steve Davis said: “It looks like Neil is moving on to Liverpool under 18s, he told me he had been approached. I imagine he is considering a fantastic offer and opportunity to go to Liverpool.

“He will be a great loss to us because he is a great lad, and a great servant to the club. He has done a brilliant job with the young players who have come through. I’ve a lot of time and respect for Neil and we all wish him well.

“It is not a negative thing, it is a real positive that one of our bright young coaches is considered by Brendan Rodgers.

“For him to get noticed by one of the top clubs in the country is of great benefit to us, it shows where the academy is.”


http://www.givemesport.com/370670-liverpool-close-in-on-crewe-alexandra-academy-director (http://www.givemesport.com/370670-liverpool-close-in-on-crewe-alexandra-academy-director)

Talking of Crewe, we ought to approach Dario Gradi and offer him a place on the board. He is exactly the sort of 'football man' we need on the board. Massive experience at all aspects of running a football club, with particular skill in developing talent. He's exactly the sort of experienced knowledge base and 'eyes' the board needs if we're going to go down the route of buying and developing players. I can but dream.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 21, 2013, 03:55:01 PM
you're talking too much sense there, Tes.

Dario Gradi is a football man, who would come cheap, knows the game inside out, and would be loyal to the death (like aldridge or roy evans).

ye cannae have those sorts about Anfield.

but on a serious note - isn't it such a crying shame that people like Gradi, who can bring a wealth of experience, always are forgotten about and neglected when it comes to backroom jobs at top clubs.

instead we see ex-players who have just quit the game, getting jobs at top clubs. 


These management and coaching youngsters know precious little about talent or coaching talent. 


In the modern era, it is seemingly all about badges, certificates and media presence.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on August 21, 2013, 03:58:51 PM
In the modern era, it is seemingly all about badges, certificates and media presence.
(http://www.allmystery.de/i/t3aca6d_NorthKoreanMilitaryMedals_zps7714ecd2.jpg)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 21, 2013, 07:38:18 PM
you're talking too much sense there, Tes.

Dario Gradi is a football man, who would come cheap, knows the game inside out, and would be loyal to the death (like aldridge or roy evans).

ye cannae have those sorts about Anfield.

but on a serious note - isn't it such a crying shame that people like Gradi, who can bring a wealth of experience, always are forgotten about and neglected when it comes to backroom jobs at top clubs.

instead we see ex-players who have just quit the game, getting jobs at top clubs. 


These management and coaching youngsters know precious little about talent or coaching talent. 


In the modern era, it is seemingly all about badges, certificates and media presence.

Someone like Gradi should have been given the job (head of football development, or whatever the title was) that Trevor Brooking was given. As cultured a player as he was, what experience does he have of player development?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on August 22, 2013, 10:50:51 PM
"But I don't want to be defeatist."

http://www.theguardian.com/football/2013/aug/22/liverpool-real-madrid-transfer-luis-suarez

About bloody time he said it.

We're a club who's won 5 European Cups, it wasn't EASY,
but we did it. We quietly went about our business in the
face of great odds and succeeded where nobody expected
us to on the greatest footballing stages of Europe against their
richest clubs.

Has it taken him this long to figure out what we're about?

Either summon the spirit of the club or move on, we're talking
about 4th here, not the title or CL.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 23, 2013, 12:45:30 AM
Exactly. The likes of us and Cloughie's Forest focused on ourselves and ourselves only. Time spent looking enviously at others (how some of the manager's words to me come across) is time not spent focusing on what we need.

I think Willian was overpriced considering his goal record and we need all our attacking players weighing in with goals, especially if the defence  doesn't get strengthened.

Anzi have spent crazy sums of money on players and are now expecting clubs to give them their money back.

I'd rather we spent no more money than bought the wrong player and just for the sake of making 'a big money signing'. We've wasted far too much since 1990 on the wrong players.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on August 23, 2013, 07:52:13 AM
Exactly. The likes of us and Cloughie's Forest focused on ourselves and ourselves only. Time spent looking enviously at others (how some of the manager's words to me come across) is time not spent focusing on what we need.

I think Willian was overpriced considering his goal record and we need all our attacking players weighing in with goals, especially if the defence  doesn't get strengthened.

Anzi have spent crazy sums of money on players and are now expecting clubs to give them their money back.

I'd rather we spent no more money than bought the wrong player and just for the sake of making 'a big money signing'. We've wasted far too much since 1990 on the wrong players.

I would agree with that wholeheartedly. In that sense I can't have any complaints about how we fared in the transfer market thus far given our current predicament of not being able to offer European footy. I would also like to commend Brendan and his team for their recent signings. Sturride, Coutinho, Toure, Aspas (who had a very good competetive debut), Mignolet. You'd have to go back to the golden 80's to match that IMHO.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on August 23, 2013, 05:07:24 PM
Exactly. The likes of us and Cloughie's Forest focused on ourselves and ourselves only. Time spent looking enviously at others (how some of the manager's words to me come across) is time not spent focusing on what we need.

I think Willian was overpriced considering his goal record and we need all our attacking players weighing in with goals, especially if the defence  doesn't get strengthened.

Anzi have spent crazy sums of money on players and are now expecting clubs to give them their money back.

I'd rather we spent no more money than bought the wrong player and just for the sake of making 'a big money signing'. We've wasted far too much since 1990 on the wrong players.
Maybe Tes, only watched the first half of Stoke game & wasn't
particularly impressed.

My fear is that we aint done enough to put some distance between us
& a lesser club that has made some shrewd acquisitions over the Summer.

Ideally we'd have that cushion there that would give us a platform to attack
Spurs & Arsenal without having to look over our shoulder.

Our goal this season seems a bit vague to me still. Realistically we should single
out one of Arsenal & Spurs (whichever seems more vulnerable) and aim to overtake
them. In our current predicament, I don't buy into totting up the points at the end
of the season and see where we stand.

I think we should be looking at things more along the lines of Arsenal lost at the weekend
so it's necessary that we win (kind of the way you would in a title race) 'cos otherwise the
notion for young players that we should win every game cos were Liverpool loses a bit
of its motivational impact i.e. it should be more a case of we really really need to win tonight
because...

Above everything else this season should be about battling and competing, going head to head
with the opposition (Spurs, Arsenal) for 38 games.

If we see that i.e. a team that goes to WHL or the Emirates, doesn't give an inch, takes the 3
points
as opposed to settling for a draw, I think that 's the real sign of progress. A
motivated, battle-ready, mentally tough outfit that gets the business done and thrives as underdog.
Jesus, if I have to spend the season listening to us whine on about hitting the post, having
loads of chances, dominating possession etc.. Real teams know that hitting the post is meaningless,
you need to go back up & stick it in the net.

It's actually one of the reasons I get frustrated with Rodge, his emphasis is on magicians & technicians,
Rafa's at the beginning was more mentality & character. Hence looking at the squad vs Stoke my heart
sank, too many immature players (some of them quite old) who think that they do a bit of trickery, hit the
post & that's their job done, not enough characters in there imo.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 23, 2013, 09:58:10 PM
We have further building to do, I don't think there's any argument there, I'm just very uncomfortable with the idea of 'marquee signings' or us spending, what for us is pretty much our entire budget on Willian.

Of the teams that finished above us last season, only Everton and Arsenal appear remotely vulnerable.

Arsenal's run of selling players and still finishing in the top four can't continue. Spurs, though finishing a point behind them, looked the more impressive team over the season, last season, and their business this Summer has set them up nicely to mount a sustained attack on the top four, fourth or third is a possibility.

As for Everton, it depends if Martinez tries to change things too quickly and/or how they adjust to his ways and tactics.

At the moment we could as easily be looking over our shoulder as upwards, on that I definitely agree, which is why I'd prefer to see any further transfer spending be focused on the defensive side and to make sure we don't suffer from a Lucas sized hole like we did over the last two seasons.

I like your idea of targeting a team if that's possible. Whilst Arsenal got off to a bad start they will be there around 5th/6th/7th when the league settles down and having gained three points on them and two on Everton, that advantage needs to be built on directly.

I agree with you that the likes of Chelsea, City, Moyes' mob and even Spurs look to be a challenge too far, even if we do strengthen further, and experience is certainly something we have haemorrhaged over the last two years. Leadership in defence, an organising force would be a huge addition.  We also lack experience off the bench, a bit of know how when things aren't quite going our way.

Rodgers thankfully has nailed his colours to fourth. I think that needs spelling out to all the players. No more "do what we can, and let's see where it gets us". The players need to know the definition of failure, and have it clearly spelled out for them. And let's see less of our players' words in print this season, just get on and show us, and leave the talking in the dressing room.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on August 24, 2013, 12:13:29 AM
Rodgers thankfully has nailed his colours to fourth. I think that needs spelling out to all the players. No more "do what we can, and let's see where it gets us". The players need to know the definition of failure, and have it clearly spelled out for them. And let's see less of our players' words in print this season, just get on and show us, and leave the talking in the dressing room.

Still he has an obligation to appear for the pre-game PC, wouldn't you agree? We both know whatever he says will be turned and twisted. IMHO, there are clear signs he's doing great progress in adaptaing to life as manager for this club.

I would agree on the rest you wrote and especially about the obsession among media and fans of gettin in a marquee signing. Our ability to build on the second half of last season will be more important than anything else. If we can do that we'll be in it with a shout me reckons. Next 6-7 will give a strong clue as to how this season will pan out me thinks.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 24, 2013, 01:07:40 AM
Still he has an obligation to appear for the pre-game PC, wouldn't you agree? We both know whatever he says will be turned and twisted.

Either, 'turned and twisted', or 'interpreted in one of several ways'. That's one of the joys and curses of the English language.

For example: Large Family Funfair.

Does it mean: The funfair is large, there are many rides and side shows? Is it a funfair for large families, two parents and at least 6 kids. Or, does the family have to be large, all above 6 feet tall, with 50 inch waist measurements.

What he's done is lay down a marker, and rightly so. Everybody knows where they stand. We know it's about progress, but the players have to know that whilst progress can be regarded as finishing 6th, with more points, more goals scored, fewer goals conceded than we achieved last season, and a smaller points gap between us and the team that finishes in the place directly above us, progress is also relative.
If we were to achieve all those things yet finish more points behind the team that finishes fourth, is that really progress?
We can't measure our own progress in isolation, simply comparing what we finish with this season with what we did last season. We have to measure progress within the 20 team competition we play in also.
Our target is the top four, be it first, second, third or fourth. That seems to be the decree from the very top, from the owners, from the manager's bosses.
If we finish fourth with fewer points, goals scored, more goals conceded etc then that ultimately is progress, because the only measurement that really counts is the position within those 20 teams.

So the manager has to spell it out, particularly for the players. They can now be under no illusions that the first measure of progress I described is enough. By spelling it out, he has also defined what failure will be also.

It's a good topic to fill your first press conference of the season, but now he has to learn the art of filling his media obligations, of which, I admit, there are many, with a lot of words but without actually saying or giving away very much.
There's no need to talk about philosophies, or 'our way of working' or any direct or indirect references to himself in that context. He's not the whole machine, merely a cog within it. Granted, an important one, but still just a cog. He exhausted the whole 'philosphy' and 'methods of working' theme last season.
The words are spoken in the press conferences, the talking is done on the pitch, and the proof of the methods are in the results, as the song says, 'nothing else matters'. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on August 24, 2013, 04:25:42 AM
What he's done is lay down a marker, and rightly so. Everybody knows where they stand. We know it's about progress, but the players have to know that whilst progress can be regarded as finishing 6th, with more points, more goals scored, fewer goals conceded than we achieved last season, and a smaller points gap between us and the team that finishes in the place directly above us, progress is also relative.
Agree, targets should be ambitious, realistic & achieved.

Memory serves me correctly he was talking about challenging the top
3 at one point when he got a sniff last season.

We were nowhere near the top team in the division last season in terms
of over-achieving based on our resources. The likes of Everton, Swansea,
West Brom were streets ahead of us.

We simply don't have the best squad in the division, a fact that is unlikely to
change for many years. Let's not forget that we have no European commitments
though & have far greater resources and pay far better wages than other
clubs before we start feeling sorry for ourselves and the challenges we face.

It should be an honour for the gaffer to lead this club & drummed into every
player what it means to wear the shirt of the most successful club in Britain
(Success which was not achieved the easy way).
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 24, 2013, 12:13:05 PM
Agree, targets should be ambitious, realistic & achieved.

Memory serves me correctly he was talking about challenging the top
3 at one point when he got a sniff last season.

We were nowhere near the top team in the division last season in terms
of over-achieving based on our resources. The likes of Everton, Swansea,
West Brom were streets ahead of us.

We simply don't have the best squad in the division, a fact that is unlikely to
change for many years. Let's not forget that we have no European commitments
though & have far greater resources and pay far better wages than other
clubs before we start feeling sorry for ourselves and the challenges we face.

It should be an honour for the gaffer to lead this club & drummed into every
player what it means to wear the shirt of the most successful club in Britain
(Success which was not achieved the easy way).

Looking at everything in terms of squads, stability of, quality of and the managers who will select teams from those squads, length of time at club and working with the players, length of managerial experience, achievements relative to the groups of players managed and the strength of competition in the leagues competed in (this point is exactly the topic being discussed here and adds context to everything), I would say we were 6th best overall.

So obviously to get 4th we need to overachieve but the likes of Everton, Newcastle, Swansea and WBA have all done so and to arguably greater levels than we have set ourselves.

Now the target has been set, there's no need to hear anything further about it from the manager. The season is 38 games, so we could be behind or ahead of the target at differing points, but let's keep the aim constant.
It's been made clear, nothing further needs to be said, at least not publically.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on August 24, 2013, 08:12:03 PM
Good result. We faded badly in the second half but for a lot of the first half we were well on top. Mignolet saved well and hopefully he'll bed in quickly...We seriously need a goal poacher. The next game will be the real tester...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 24, 2013, 08:19:42 PM
Someone like Gradi should have been given the job (head of football development, or whatever the title was) that Trevor Brooking was given. As cultured a player as he was, what experience does he have of player development?

agreed.   But you always know that people like Brooking get the top jobs.  One can almost forecast it ahead of time.  Even before they retire, names like Sir Trevor Brooking, or Sir Sebastian Coe, have a ring to them.  Now sometimes they strike lucky and get a good un, like Coe.  But usually, one ends up with non-offensive and non-effective smilers and shakers, like Brooking.

as you say, Gradi would have brought a lot to the table.

but the FA want the Brooking and Hodgson types.  My fave england managers have been the ones that were edgy - venables, hoddle, even clough (who got overlooked).

and as for badges - don';t get me started :)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 24, 2013, 08:25:38 PM
like Stoke, we dominated - especially early on......didn't take our chances, and then relied for a second week, on our keeper saving our blushes.

however, beating Villa, away from home, is a good result.

someone needs to have a word with our striker though.  When you get chopped down in the area, you need to appeal for a penalty.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 24, 2013, 09:00:04 PM
When you get chopped down in the area, you need to appeal for a penalty.

The inverse Suarez effect.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 24, 2013, 09:03:12 PM
however, beating Villa, away from home, is a good result.

We don't have a good recent record at Villa Park so it's a good result. 3 points before a performance is always a good sign.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 24, 2013, 09:22:57 PM
From: http://www1.skysports.com/football/news/11095/8887765/ (http://www1.skysports.com/football/news/11095/8887765/)

"Obviously second half, we just needed to defend a bit deeper today. Tactically that was the idea. In the first two games, Aston Villa have been brilliant on the counter-attack and if you open up too much the spaces, then they have players who can hurt you. We defended at half-pitch, kept our ends tied together and tried to deny them any chances."

That's pleasing to read. He's learned from the way they did us last season, in the same way they did for Arsenal in the opening game. Also he's understanding substance over style wins more games than the other way around.
Winning ugly gets the same 3 points as a 10/10 on the eye.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on August 24, 2013, 10:16:34 PM
Apologies Tes, Dude and Ed you all posted replies a couple of weeks back  when I suggested we needed to look at the positives on here more. I actually did start to reply on two occasions to some of the posts but twice in the end I never got to post any replies.

In fairness today was a good day. We played well and scored. Then we played poorly and showed we could hold a lead. We're definitely not quiet there yet but one thing Rodgers seems to be building and that's consistency. Its very early days but its a solid start and something to build on. I'm not going to jump the gun and suggest anything silly but wouldn't it be a nice feeling to be 6 points clear of United come next Sunday. I know that's a big ask and we cant start looking at teams around us just focus on ourselves but if Chelsea were to do United Monday night its a possibility. 

Whats worries me about our own team is when we don't turn our possession into goals we eventually crumble. So many times we have started so well. Even when Kenny was here. We could batter teams for 30 minutes. But if we don't turn our dominance in to goals you end up with what we had in the second half today going from being completely superior to completely inferior. Even when we score one like today we seem to find it so hard to get the second.

And what a week its been with Willian doing a medical at Spurs and then heading on to Chelsea. Ive seen so much rubbish written by Spurs fans and it felt so good when Willian showed them just what a big club they really are. All credit to David Levy hes doing a super job but one season in the champions league and a bit of cash in the bank doesn't propel Spurs into footballs elite.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on August 24, 2013, 10:31:47 PM
From: http://www1.skysports.com/football/news/11095/8887765/ (http://www1.skysports.com/football/news/11095/8887765/)Winning ugly gets the same 3 points as a 10/10 on the eye.

Is right but I didn't enjoy the feeling we'd struggle to hold on to the lead against a better team. I don't mean to sound negative but we need to calm things down, find a structure that allows us to "rest" during the runs where we don't dominate the games. Good start to the season indeed. ManU will be a real test. I maintain some fans, the entire media underestimate us and the potential we carry big time. I don't mind winning ugly as long as we learn and progress. It was painful to Watch Coutinho fade, Aspas not turn up and Sturridge out of sorts playing left back one minute just to see him overlap with Johnson the next. We're making progress though, let there be no doubt about it. And let us not forget this game was out of our hand for too long periods of time.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 24, 2013, 10:42:20 PM
Whats worries me about our own team is when we don't turn our possession into goals we eventually crumble. So many times we have started so well. Even when Kenny was here. We could batter teams for 30 minutes. But if we don't turn our dominance in to goals you end up with what we had in the second half today going from being completely superior to completely inferior. Even when we score one like today we seem to find it so hard to get the second.


Sport has such a huge psychological side to it. In the same way that we have to learn to believe we can still win when not playing well, be disciplined when the need is there and understand when the need is there, we also have to learn not to allow a 'setback' of not adding a second goal quickly to derail us from adding a second goal. He have to learn not to lose belief. To keep playing and 'believe' it will come. Sometimes it doesn't.
The Mancs with their attacking strength went through a phase either last season or the season before where they won a string of games by just 1-0.
During our heyday we never steamrollered every time, in fact we were the champions of the 'late winner'. The difference was we 'believed' we would get that goal and heads never went down, despite missed chances or even a lack of chances created, the belief was unshakeable.

I think if we can start to string together a run of clean sheets then the desperation to get the second or third, and therefore the disappointment when they don't materialise, will hopefully subside. At the moment it's almost like they don't believe they'll win unless they get two or three goals and things go flat if they don't appear.
If we have confidence in our ability to keep out the opposition, we can start to be more relaxed about the point at which the second or third goal can arrive. Sheer force of belief is as valuable as any £30M player.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 24, 2013, 11:00:18 PM
Is right but I didn't enjoy the feeling we'd struggle to hold on to the lead against a better team. I don't mean to sound negative but we need to calm things down, find a structure that allows us to "rest" during the runs where we don't dominate the games. Good start to the season indeed. ManU will be a real test. I maintain some fans, the entire media underestimate us and the potential we carry big time. I don't mind winning ugly as long as we learn and progress. It was painful to Watch Coutinho fade, Aspas not turn up and Sturridge out of sorts playing left back one minute just to see him overlap with Johnson the next. We're making progress though, let there be no doubt about it. And let us not forget this game was out of our hand for too long periods of time.

You've made some good observations there, and those observations are partly the reasons some aren't as convinced as others.
Winning ugly, stylishly, luckily or undeservedly, should never be ranked in some order of preference. Teams that win things do so because they utilise all those ways. Progress is when you can turn to any of them and be successful.
I think players like Coutinho and Aspas will fade in and out of games more in this league than in any other. Until the game changes and skill, tactics, technical ability are cherished way above heart, passion and workrate in isolation, it will always be the case.
Also, lets not forget it's only the second game of the season. Arsenal's game in midweek, not just the result but the 90 minutes themselves I think was the reason they did for Fulham.
Villa have an extra game played on us and at this early stage of the season it can be a huge help building back to optimal fitness. I think that extra step ahead of us in terms of fitness showed in the second half.

The Manc game will seem odd. Playing the Mancs is always huge, but when you've got the bitterest of Bitters' managers in their dug out it will feel like playing the Mancs and the Bitters in the same game.
It will be a good chance to chart if progress is being made or how far we still have to go before we can realistically say we are in a state of progress.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on August 24, 2013, 11:18:50 PM
Sport has such a huge psychological side to it. In the same way that we have to learn to believe we can still win when not playing well, be disciplined when the need is there and understand when the need is there, we also have to learn not to allow a 'setback' of not adding a second goal quickly to derail us from adding a second goal. He have to learn not to lose belief. To keep playing and 'believe' it will come. Sometimes it doesn't.
The Mancs with their attacking strength went through a phase either last season or the season before where they won a string of games by just 1-0.
During our heyday we never steamrollered every time, in fact we were the champions of the 'late winner'. The difference was we 'believed' we would get that goal and heads never went down, despite missed chances or even a lack of chances created, the belief was unshakeable.

I think if we can start to string together a run of clean sheets then the desperation to get the second or third, and therefore the disappointment when they don't materialise, will hopefully subside. At the moment it's almost like they don't believe they'll win unless they get two or three goals and things go flat if they don't appear.
If we have confidence in our ability to keep out the opposition, we can start to be more relaxed about the point at which the second or third goal can arrive. Sheer force of belief is as valuable as any £30M player.

I'd agree with all of that Tes. Thats why wins like the last two are so important. It really will help the players from the psychological perspective. Clean sheets help breed a mental toughness in defense. Wins help instill that determination to win at all costs. As you say United scrapped to one nil wins alot last year but they always managed to win the games a mentally weaker team would've drawn or lost. All of Fergies teams never believed they were beaten no matter what the score was or no matter how many minutes were gone. This year if we are going to challenge for fourth we are going to need to be mentally rock solid. From a quality perspective and looking at today's bench I think we are very short of options. We don't have many game changers on the bench , there arent many more players in the squad you can bring on to score goals. I hope we dont spend money for the sake of spending money either. If the right players arent available I would prefer to keep whatevers left in the transfer kitty and use it in January if the right players are available or next summer if they are not.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 24, 2013, 11:43:39 PM
I'd agree with all of that Tes. Thats why wins like the last two are so important. It really will help the players from the psychological perspective. Clean sheets help breed a mental toughness in defense. Wins help instill that determination to win at all costs. As you say United scrapped to one nil wins alot last year but they always managed to win the games a mentally weaker team would've drawn or lost. All of Fergies teams never believed they were beaten no matter what the score was or no matter how many minutes were gone. This year if we are going to challenge for fourth we are going to need to be mentally rock solid. From a quality perspective and looking at today's bench I think we are very short of options. We don't have many game changers on the bench , there arent many more players in the squad you can bring on to score goals. I hope we dont spend money for the sake of spending money either. If the right players arent available I would prefer to keep whatevers left in the transfer kitty and use it in January if the right players are available or next summer if they are not.

Agree with every single word of that, Juan. The bench is a worry and as you say there are no game changers when we need a goal or a solidifying influence when we need to close the game out.

Money doesn't win you anything, buying the 'right' players does. I'm not bothered about us not getting Willian, in fact I'd rather we used that money to strengthen the defence, which two clean sheets can't mask the fact it still is nowhere near stronger enough.
If we get a left sided attacker, which apparently Rodgers wants, then great but only if he's the right player, not just a left side attacker.
Honda's free in January as his contract ends then, rather than in June like most. He could be a timely boost and he's the sort of intelligent player that you could see linking well with Coutinho, Aspas, Sturridge and Suarez.
I just hope we don't get caught out last minute trying to make a 'splash' late in the transfer window.

Coutinho has shown that the right player is better than a big ticket one.
£35M on Andy Carroll or £40M + Sturridge for Torres? The big ticket purchase doesn't look so clever now.
It's a shame we didn't get Jackson Martinez from Chiapas last Summer when we'd been linked heavily with him since January 2012. €8.8M seems a ridiculous bargain now, instead of the £10.5M for Borini.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 25, 2013, 02:17:42 PM
The search is on for Arsene Wenger's missing pocket:

(http://dejavucoding.com/images/arsen.gif)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 25, 2013, 07:52:52 PM
a further example of cost-cutting measures this summer at the Emirates.



Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 25, 2013, 09:44:52 PM
a further example of cost-cutting measures this summer at the Emirates.

 :D   :D   :D

It'll probably be found in the same place as their £70M transfer budget.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 25, 2013, 10:17:37 PM
Big game on Tuesday night at home to Notts County in the (whatever it's called) Cup, aka League Cup.

We have to get this spot on. We can't afford the embarrassment of a defeat or even a draw, neither can we afford to just nick a scrappy victory. He needs to play a reasonably strong team to make sure the winning momentum continues and this possible way into Europe is given 100% respect and taken completely seriously.

There's the obvious distraction of the Mancs up next in the league, but how better to prepare for that than with a good home victory, rather than risk a confidence shattering defeat.

I'd definitely keep Mignolet in net so he can get another early chance of playing at Anfield and settling into a big club atmosphere, plus, I wouldn't want to be on the same side as Jones in training, nevermind actually have him in the team.

Maybe give Kelly, if he's fit, a run at centre half along Kolo Toure, who would help him through. Then again that means playing Johnson again and I think we have to look after him otherwise he'll succumb to injury again later in the season. Is playing both Wisdom and Kelly too much of a risk and too many changes, as we'll probably see Cissoko make his debut if his fitness is up to it.

Agger, Johnson and Gerrard are maybe the obvious ones to be rested, but that's two changes to the back four at least. Henderson can take Gerrard's role and moving him centrally would suit him better.

It all goes to show how lacking in squad depth we still are and how dependent we are on first team players who don't have the greatest fitness/injury records.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 25, 2013, 10:29:10 PM
:D   :D   :D

It'll probably be found in the same place as their £70M transfer budget.

twas a bizarre summer.  Arsenal and Liverpool had supposedly big wads of cash to spend - but could find no takers (for various reasons)

Anyroads- Wenger IMHO is 4 years past his north london sell-by-date
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 25, 2013, 11:24:12 PM
twas a bizarre summer.  Arsenal and Liverpool had supposedly big wads of cash to spend - but could find no takers (for various reasons)

Anyroads- Wenger IMHO is 4 years past his north london sell-by-date

He's the classic example of a manager carrying on too long when his best position is now in the boardroom, serving the club in a more suitable position.

He's let so-called principles, (his over indulgent style of play, seeing the defensive side and defensive personnel being beneath his ideals somehow, and also his belief in every purchase being an unbelievable bargain, or an unknown that goes on to become a household name), get in the way of creating success.
It's as though he's got to do it without a Viera, Petit, Gilberto Silva, Tony Adams (just for the comedic value alone  :D), Keown or Seaman. Recreate the invincibles but based on possession and ball retention alone.
Prove that tackling and defending is an outdated concept and that football can be played with the most minimal of physical contact.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on August 26, 2013, 12:22:07 PM
Big game on Tuesday night at home to Notts County in the (whatever it's called) Cup, aka League Cup.

We have to get this spot on. We can't afford the embarrassment of a defeat or even a draw, neither can we afford to just nick a scrappy victory. He needs to play a reasonably strong team to make sure the winning momentum continues and this possible way into Europe is given 100% respect and taken completely seriously.

There's the obvious distraction of the Mancs up next in the league, but how better to prepare for that than with a good home victory, rather than risk a confidence shattering defeat.

I'd definitely keep Mignolet in net so he can get another early chance of playing at Anfield and settling into a big club atmosphere, plus, I wouldn't want to be on the same side as Jones in training, nevermind actually have him in the team.

Maybe give Kelly, if he's fit, a run at centre half along Kolo Toure, who would help him through. Then again that means playing Johnson again and I think we have to look after him otherwise he'll succumb to injury again later in the season. Is playing both Wisdom and Kelly too much of a risk and too many changes, as we'll probably see Cissoko make his debut if his fitness is up to it.

Agger, Johnson and Gerrard are maybe the obvious ones to be rested, but that's two changes to the back four at least. Henderson can take Gerrard's role and moving him centrally would suit him better.

It all goes to show how lacking in squad depth we still are and how dependent we are on first team players who don't have the greatest fitness/injury records.

I would agree he needs to field a fairly strong side. Nevertheless I think Kelly should get a start, I also believe Wisdom need a competetive game and so do Alberto. I would rest Toure, Agger, Gerrard, Sturridge and Coutinho and possible bring them on in the 2nd half if needed. A first test to our much spoken about depth?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on August 26, 2013, 06:19:11 PM
I would agree he needs to field a fairly strong side. Nevertheless I think Kelly should get a start, I also believe Wisdom need a competetive game and so do Alberto. I would rest Toure, Agger, Gerrard, Sturridge and Coutinho and possible bring them on in the 2nd half if needed. A first test to our much spoken about depth?

Throw Ibe and Sterling on too. Allen needs to step up. Borini should be given his chance up front.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 26, 2013, 07:20:37 PM
Let's see if we can cobble a team together between us all.

GK - Mignolet - gives him another game in front of the Kop and help him settle in.

RB - Wisdom

LB - Cissoko

CB - Kelly (if fit) Toure.  Agger needs the rest and Skrtel's not due back until the Manc game.

MIDS - Allen, Hendo (we need his energy) ?

FORWARDS - Ibe, Borini, Alberto or Sterling

So a settled, stabled team it is then.  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 26, 2013, 10:34:53 PM
we look a bit short in midfield   :D


BTW  I see my prediction for title winners picked up a good point tonight at United.


And my prediction for third, got beaten at Cardiff.  More of that type of result to come this season, I reckons for Pelligini.









Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 26, 2013, 11:35:24 PM
we look a bit short in midfield   :D

It's an odd one isn't it Dude? We replicated Henderson in buying Allen, except a shorter, more lightweight, less energetic version, Gerrard, who knows how much longer before his body breaks again, and Lucas. We've got no room to rest any player other than Gerrard (that's an absolute necessity), so we have to risk our only holding midfielder (who proved his worth over the last two seasons when he was out injured) in every game.

Likewise central defence. We'll need to play our 32 year old as the two players who may have got a game only because they're not wanted for anything that 'actually counts', are both injured, and Agger, like Gerrard and Johnson has to be preserved for league duty only.
We've had all Summer to sort out central defence. We've done the bare minimum by having to replace a player who isn't physically there anymore, yet 50% of our centre halves don't appear to be trusted by the manager, but have neither been shipped out or other choices brought in so the manager chooses his two he actually wants rather than his mistrust causing the selection to be a default one.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 12:19:26 AM
we look a bit short in midfield   :D

The more I think about it Dude, the more puzzled I get with this Summer's transfer policy.

If he wants to move Coutinho centrally, we'll be playing with a front three, with Coutinho behind, meaning we'll have to play with two sort of holding midfielders, which is what he's done after a fashion with Gerrard and Lucas.
So like with central defence, we've got only two players, Gerrard and Lucas, for two positions. Neither Hendo or Allen could play alongside Gerrard comfortably as he's bound at some point to relinquish his post, lose his discipline and go walk about, neither can they replace Lucas as the most defensive, disciplined 'sitter' of the two.

So if we genuinely have the money that was supposedly there for Henry the Armenian and Williamn, wouldn't it make more sense giving ourselves three to choose two from in the Lucas/Gerrard role(s) and give himself three centre backs, he actually positively trusts and wants, from which to choose two. Also it allows Agger and Toure to take a breather occasionally, though obviously not for the same match.

Of the three right footed centre halves we've been most heaviestly linked with, Ilori and Alderweireld would cost less than the £10M we apparently turned down from Napoli for Skrtel, so Skrtel's replacement is self financed, leaving the money to go on an addition for Gerrard's/Lucas' role and a wide left player.

Talking of wide left players, there's Assaidi. Either let's use him or cash in. If we can't sell this window, and we can't get real quality, then let's use what we've got in Assaidi, supplemented with Sterling and Ibe, and now Cissoko's here, we could also utilise Enrique there, as we did last season.
We'd at least have Coutinho then in his rightful place (or where Rodgers sees him playing) and enough strength behind him in the holding role(s) to allow for that.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 08:07:26 PM
Mignolet, Johnson, Toure, Wisdom, Cissoko, Allen, Gerrard, Alberto, Ibe, Sterling, Sturridge.

A decent, strong team. Should get the job done.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 08:34:00 PM
H-T 2-0. Sterling, Sturridge. So far, so good.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 09:31:58 PM
Both centre halves ball watching for first goal. Second goal on the counter attack. Truly dire defending.

Extra time definitely looms.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 09:55:30 PM
Toure off injured, added to Cissoko and Allen. 20 mins of extra time with 10 men, having made all our subs.

Suddenly the Manc game has got a bit tougher.

Our squad is looking threadbare again.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 09:58:10 PM
Nightmare on Anfield Road.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 09:59:54 PM
We have Sterling at right back.

I'm sure I'll wake up from this soon.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 10:02:14 PM
PHEEEWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW. Sturridge scores from a tight angle.

NOW!!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 10:11:23 PM
Jordan Gerrard Henderson, surges forward, nutmegs one and slots home with a superb finish.

The young man is growing up, really nice to see.

Why, oh why, do we make things so hard for ourselves?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 10:16:35 PM
Notts County 4 defeats in 4 1st division games. I actually feel sorry for them tonight. I'm not sure they deserved to lose.

So much for our 'famed' mentality. We have to match these lower division teams' desire.

And, please, don't ever play Agger at left back again.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 10:19:03 PM
If Henry and Co really do like 'buying things', they need to prove it in the next 5 days.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 10:25:59 PM
Right now, I'd settle for a point on Sunday, which would actually be an improvement on last season. Aren't low starting points wonderful?  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 27, 2013, 10:41:04 PM
2-nil up against weak opposition, and as usual, we do not have the tactics to put a game to bed.


it's deja vu, all over again.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 10:58:56 PM
2-nil up against weak opposition, and as usual, we do not have the tactics to put a game to bed.


it's deja vu, all over again.

Neither the tactics or players. Again, we looked complacent leading against so-called lesser opposition. We were sluggish and sloppy.
Their second goal was identical to a goal we conceded the last time Agger was played at left back.

I know it's early, but so far I'm not sure what it is about Alberto that we didn't have before we bought him, and hence the need to buy him at the moment, with real need elsewhere in the squad.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 11:14:59 PM
Third game in is all it took before we surrender a 2 goal lead. I know some of us get accused of being negative or not positive enough or whatever, but it's damned irritating to see mistakes being repeated. Once, OK, twice, makes you a slow learner, but after that?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 27, 2013, 11:19:24 PM
I hope Johnson was watching Sterling at right back tonight. The best two right back performances of the last two seasons have come from emergency right backs - Henderson and Sterling.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on August 28, 2013, 06:10:36 AM
Mignolet, Johnson, Toure, Wisdom, Cissoko, Allen, Gerrard, Alberto, Ibe, Sterling, Sturridge.

A decent, strong team. Should get the job done.

Mad game as usual....even madder line up...cannot believe that toure and gerrard were played...with manure on sunday...mad as batshiite stuff...and now toure is going to miss the manure game...brilliant...
oh well...it's not going to be dull...i'm not sure about the old heart though...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 28, 2013, 01:54:05 PM
the wheels could come off the bus, if we take a hiding.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 28, 2013, 04:06:45 PM
Mad game as usual....even madder line up...cannot believe that toure and gerrard were played...with manure on sunday...mad as batshiite stuff...and now toure is going to miss the manure game...brilliant...
oh well...it's not going to be dull...i'm not sure about the old heart though...

Because of our lack of planning for Carra's retirement and none replacement of the two centre halves Rodgers doesn't appear to trust, we ended up having to play a 32 year old instead of risking Agger's frail body.
One season clear of major injury shouldn't fool anyone, but we shouldn't have been in a position of choosing from the options that we had. We should have been able to rest both, if they are the first choice pairing.

Two centre halves are the minimum. Coates is out injured for over half the season, and out of favour anyway. Skrtel is coming back from injury, will no doubt miss some more games if his past record is anything to go by, and isn't, so it appears, trusted by the manager anyway. Now our 32 year old is injured, leaving us with just one, previously injury prone, centre half, and it being proved that Wisdom is not ready to play first team football at centre half, no matter the level of first team opponents.

Considering who has left this season, their places in the squad over the last two seasons anyway, the players that were available last season but are now on loan, all in all, our squad is probably thinner than last season, and last season's squad, in terms of useable quality, was threadbare anyway.

Rodgers has cleared out 3 Dalglish purchases he doesn't rate, a player who was here when he first arrived, and has admitted his error (if an error has been made) in removing Assadi.

Balancing out Borini/Allen (though fans are split on that one), with Sturridge/Coutinho/Mignolet, with the paucity of the numbers and quality aspects of the squad, then the manager should be backed with more than a profit making transfer budget. Whether he'll buy the right players, or for the right positions, can be argued, but the fact that he should be backed financially to do so, shouldn't really. We need numbers, preferably of the right quality of course, but we need numbers.
If they're not prepared to back the manager, then appoint one that they are, but whoever the manager is, he should be backed. I'd take Rodgers' transfer record over Dalglish's. That may not be saying much or a ringing endorsement of the man. FSG have to take responsibility for their appointments of Dalglish and Comolli and for allowing them to spend such huge sums on any single player. The shouldn't be punishing their current choice of manager, and most importantly, hanging the fans out to dry with such a lightweight squad. Ticket prices aren't being reduced in line with the strength of the squad.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 28, 2013, 09:53:22 PM
"The club today announced plans to pay tribute to Bill Shankly before Sunday’s game on the week of the great former Liverpool manager’s 100th birthday."

Sorted. Who needs players with FSG making grandiose gestures like that. Once again, I am at peace with our owners.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 28, 2013, 10:48:09 PM
We've got the Mancs away in the 4th round of the League Cup. We've no need or excuse to put out anything but a strong team, but what about them?

The match will be 24th/25th September. We're at home to Southampton on the Saturday before, with Sunderland away the Saturday after. That's not as tough as it could have been and nothing huge to distract us from picking the strongest team.

They have the away leg of the Manchester derby the Sunday before, the 22nd, and then WBA at home the following Saturday. Those three games are sandwiched in between Champions League ties.
So they have three weeks of weekend/mid week matches, where as we are likely to be resting during the midweek previous and if we play on the Saturday and they don't play until the Sunday, then we have an extra day's rest over them also.

We really have no excuse not to field the strongest team possible, but Moyes has much more to figure out. He daren't rest players for the derby, and the CL matches are his first two, and again, he daren't mess up in those two early games either, otherwise they could have a mountain to climb, in order not to exit from the group stages.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 28, 2013, 11:33:38 PM
And now the owners wheel out their friendly neighbourhood journo, and offer up this:

Liverpool WILL make signings as Reds face five days that will define their future

28 Aug 2013 11:34 By David Maddock


David Maddock says the club needs Champions League football and will therefore stop at nothing in the transfer market to build a squad capable of securing a top-four finish

It does rather seem like we're always saying this about Liverpool, but the next five days could define the future of the club.

If that seems a dramatic statement, then it merely acknowledges just how important Champions League football is to a club whose history, reputation and - more importantly - worldwide fan base, is built on European exploits.

Put simply, Liverpool need to finish in the top four this season, they need to reestablish themselves among the Premier League elite, because many more years like the last four, when they have been condemned to the footballing wilderness, and they may never get back there.

It is a depressing thought, for such a big club, not just for their own fans, but for true football fans everywhere, because the English game needs a strong Liverpool.

But let's not get too depressing. The good news is, if they can get some big decisions right over the next five days, then Brendan Rodgers is building the sort of structure - and momentum - at Anfield that could take them back where they feel they belong.

They need to make signings. And they WILL make signings, at least two of them. With the injury to Kolo Toure, they require a centre half urgently (and actually they probably need two).

Rodgers would like to sign Kyriakos Papadopoulos from Schalke, but the fee is prohibitively high for a player who has been sidelined through injury for much of the past 10 months. If he could get the Greek stopper on loan, he could solve his defensive problems.

Alternatively, and probably more likely, is his interest in Mamadou Sakho, which is likely to come to fruition before the deadline.

Whether the France international is the answer remains to be seen, but if Liverpool are to seriously challenge for the top four, then they need a confident, solid centre half to back up their impressive work going forward.

They will also need two more things to happen before the transfer window slams shut next week. One - and most important of all - is to resist the inevitable late bid for Luis Suarez from Real Madrid.

It will happen. Probably this weekend. He will want to go. But it is too late, far too late, to get a replacement of that quality, so Liverpool will need to be strong, to resist the pressure, and then somehow gently get Suarez's head right to play a role for the club over the coming months.

It will not be easy, but that is what managers are paid huge salaries for these days, to manage. To manage massive egos and millionaire superstars. To get them playing even when they don't want to play.

And at least in Brendan Rodgers they have a manager with a real talent for that. He is still young, is still learning, but he seems capable of getting players to...well, err. Play.

That is where things are most encouraging, because in their first two league games the Reds have looked like a real team, with real talent. Add a motivated Suarez into the mix and a strong centre half and they can challenge for the top four.

Add a top class attacking player to that... and they will definitely challenge for the top four. So Rodgers has five days to persuade Suarez to give it one more year, find a centre half, and then finish all that off with the capture of a world class attacker...even if there are not many of those around.


http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/transfer-news/liverpool-transfers-kyriakos-papadopoulos-mamadou-2232883 (http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/transfer-news/liverpool-transfers-kyriakos-papadopoulos-mamadou-2232883)

Words. Fail. Me.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 28, 2013, 11:49:32 PM
Spurs supposedly in talks with Eriksen. So let's think this one through.

We're not signing Eriksen or Henry the Armenian because they play in the same position Rodgers would like to play Coutinho. However, before being able to play Coutinho where Eriksen plays we need to get a wide left player to replace Coutinho in the position he is playing at the moment. Then we sell and loan our two left sided players that could have facilitated Coutinho playing where Eriksen does, which is why we're not getting Eriksen, even though we have no one playing in his position because...............
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on August 29, 2013, 12:53:41 AM
Words. Fail. Me.
Not the journalist though.

Have no idea either what that article was about.

The argument about the centre half? Rodgers is the one who
had the strategy of alienating Skrtel and instantly making Toure 1st team.
I have absolutely nothing personal against the player but have questioned
repeatedly on here the wisdom of heavily relying on a player his age for a 38
game campaign.

Lee Dixon (good co-commentator there on NBC's coverage) predicted the
Toure injury the other day, saying that the key to a good defense is the
length of time you can keep the 4 together and saying he had reservations
about us in that department. It gives an indication of the naivety at play on
defensive matters and is very embarassing when you listen to an ex-pro
cutting through the happy-speak and with one sentence demolishing our
credibility as contenders.

One SERIOUSLY has to wonder what the transfer strategy really was if Toure had gotten
the injury a week later. I mean you could effectively have written off the season had
that happened. Madness.

Watched a bit of the Villa game. It actually reminded me of how Swansea played 2
seasons ago.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 29, 2013, 11:07:36 AM
We need a defensive coach who can either teach us how to defend, or get the players to understand and apply Rodgers' philosophy for the defensive side of our play, because one thing's certain, whatever the reason, our defending is still poor.

We were picked apart by a division 1 team on Tuesday night for both their goals.

I've given my views on defenders/transfer strategy ad nauseum, so I won't repeat myself, but I'm in total agreement with you Ed. I simply don't understand what is going off.

Like you Ed, I like listening to Dixon explain the defensive side of the game and from the perspective of if he was actually on the pitch. There's no bland straight bats or cliches. He just explains things simply and clearly, and doesn't look as though he's out to make a name for himself as a pundit.

I'm not out to criticise the manager, because in order to do that I would need to understand his philosophy and methods when it it comes to defending and his transfer policy, in order to then identify what I think are the holes, but I simply don't understand any of it. I'm baffled by it all.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 29, 2013, 09:56:35 PM
apart from needing new owners, long overdue development of the ground, a new manager, a new set of scouts, new defenders, new midfielders, winger, and possibly a striker to eventually replace Suarez (when he leaves next summer), what did the Romans ever do for us.

I am upbeat, in a gallows sense of humour, sort of way.

Like what could possibly go wrong. 

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 29, 2013, 11:56:27 PM
apart from needing new owners, long overdue development of the ground, a new manager, a new set of scouts, new defenders, new midfielders, winger, and possibly a striker to eventually replace Suarez (when he leaves next summer), what did the Romans ever do for us.

I am upbeat, in a gallows sense of humour, sort of way.

Like what could possibly go wrong.

It's like watching a real life Laurel and Hardy film. It would be hilarious if it was another club, but it's still funny, even though it's us, because it is actually funny, no matter who the club involved is.

Spurs have done remarkably well this Summer. Their centre back line up is still under strength, but they've replaced Gallas with the Romanian they've just bought. They've managed to pick up these players, one after the other, whilst keeping Madrid at bay and hammering out a cracking deal with them over Bale, they've got Parker (the ultimate expensive, short term 'Arry signing) off the wage bill, whilst turning a profit off Dempsey off the MLS (which is no mean feat for a league with no money), £5.5M for Huddlestone stands up to scrutiny and they've managed to wring £9M out of Cardiff for Caulkner. Who? Exactly.

The only downside is getting nearly an entire new first 11 to bed in.

Even before Baldini arrived, it must be the case as he's not been there long enough to influence this entire turn about, they appear to be well organised in terms of who and where and what, and have just gone about it super efficiently picking off/up their targets. There's always a risk in buying so many pieces of the jigsaw together that when the dust starts to settle you find too many that don't fit.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on August 30, 2013, 12:26:15 AM
It's like watching a real life Laurel and Hardy film. It would be hilarious if it was another club, but it's still funny, even though it's us, because it is actually funny, no matter who the club involved is.
yes, spurs have been amazing this summer.

if it was for sale, they bought it.

and with the massive Bale money, their net spend for essentially a whole new team of top class players, is tiny.

but as you say, the trick is gluing all these pieces together.  I think AVB will be under immense pressure and I would not be surprised to see him fired before next summer.

they clearly want to cement CL football for years tocome; and in doing so move ahead of arsenal.

spurs also seem to have the financial fair play thing in mind - and are getting their big money spent now.

as for us - yes, you reminded me of that laurel and hardy film, about delivering a piano, to a customer who lived up a lot of stairs.  Our owners, scouts and manager, are something else.  They just do not have a clue.

And like you say, I suspect Rodgers is just keen to lick posteriors, to hang on to his dream job. 

Rafa, or any man worth his salt, would never have put up with this.  And the yanks knew that.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on August 30, 2013, 06:03:34 PM
'The Chairman' speaks:

http://www.espn.co.uk/espn/sport/video_audio/234029.html?CMP=OTC-RSS;genre=1;sport=3 (http://www.espn.co.uk/espn/sport/video_audio/234029.html?CMP=OTC-RSS;genre=1;sport=3)

It would would be nice to see LFC's chairman interviewed with Anfield as the backdrop. Liverpool, precinct of Boston.  ::)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 01, 2013, 02:19:20 PM
We are becoming a 'one man team' again, granted it's a different player.  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 01, 2013, 02:54:11 PM
Poor second half so far, we've let the Mancs back in. We need to defend by keeping possession. We're not good enough to sit back and let come at us. Despite Moyes, they've still got too much talent to let them have the ball.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 01, 2013, 03:02:45 PM
We need to up it. What happens at half time? Do the players get a sedative?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 01, 2013, 03:10:17 PM
Johnson off injured now.  ???  Wisdom on. Kelly would have been preferable, if he wasn't just back from injury himself. The bench makes worrying viewing, not too much creation on it.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 01, 2013, 03:13:52 PM
Luis Alberto on for Coutinho. Coutinho's been one of the better players on show but we've lack real creativity and composure when in possession, especially second half.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 01, 2013, 03:17:34 PM
The crowd's not done their part either, they've been subdued.

Van Pursie misses an excellent chance, we're riding our luck far too much.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 01, 2013, 03:48:09 PM
Ground it out, and three points are three points. We need to play the second half like we've played the first.
All four games this season have seen decent first halves, but then we put ourselves in trouble by not continuing to do what has put us in a good position in the match. Early days, but it's a vast improvement on the start we made last season, and we're looking more 'realistic' in our approach, and it's paying dividends.

The international break, at least in terms on injuries, has come at the right time. We now need to push on and try and get a bit more rhythm in our play, and do it for the whole 90 minutes.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on September 01, 2013, 06:05:32 PM
Ground it out, and three points are three points. We need to play the second half like we've played the first.
All four games this season have seen decent first halves, but then we put ourselves in trouble by not continuing to do what has put us in a good position in the match. Early days, but it's a vast improvement on the start we made last season, and we're looking more 'realistic' in our approach, and it's paying dividends.

The international break, at least in terms on injuries, has come at the right time. We now need to push on and try and get a bit more rhythm in our play, and do it for the whole 90 minutes.


Great result...but as you say Tes, badly fading in the second half...what happens if we don't score early? Do we have a plan B...good stuff from the lads though and considering Suarez is still banned even better...if we keep him and get a few additions, a centre back, a defensive midfielder and another attacking midfielder then we could do pretty well...waiting til the last day though is just stupid and in hindsight might cost us big style...
All in all a great result...nice to be unbeaten, no goals conceded and TOP! Not getting carried away though...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 01, 2013, 06:53:08 PM

Great result...but as you say Tes, badly fading in the second half...what happens if we don't score early? Do we have a plan B...good stuff from the lads though and considering Suarez is still banned even better...if we keep him and get a few additions, a centre back, a defensive midfielder and another attacking midfielder then we could do pretty well...waiting til the last day though is just stupid and in hindsight might cost us big style...
All in all a great result...nice to be unbeaten, no goals conceded and TOP! Not getting carried away though...

It definitely looks like we're getting the centre half. I don't think the manager sees a need for another defensive midfielder, which seems odd. With Suarez out for such a long time at the start of the season, we could have done with Gerrard being free to play further forward to give Coutinho someone other than just Sturridge to combine with. He's definitely missing the movement and creativity of Suarez.
Aspas has made a slow start, but then the PL is very different to La Liga.
We could do with someone a bit more inspirational and inspiring than Moses, but if we've not beeen able to get positive choices, I'd rather we spent the relatively modest sum of £1M on Moses and then try and find the answer in the Winter window, tricky as it may seem. Downing certainly wasn't the answer, Assaidi wasn't given the chance to be, so let's see what Moses can offer. It's why I can't understand the lack of interest in Honda.
Here's just the sort of bright, sparky player that would help the likes of Coutinho, Sturridge and Suarez, plus he'd be another potential goal outlet too.
Hopefully Sakho with his height and strength will provide a threat when we get set pieces and tightened us up when we concede them.

It's early in the season still and we had a tougher than it should have been test in midweek and a few players looked like they were feeling the effects of midweek. The Mancs of course had longer to rest after the Chelsea game, but the manager and players need to get to grips with our lack of performances in 2nd halves.
We're doing ourselves no favours and making it harder on ourselves than we need to.

There's one positive though. We're not going out all gung ho looking to get the second goal and leaving ourselves wide open. Rodgers seems to be learning that substance before style, whilst maybe not being as pleasing on the eye, is sometimes the way you have to play it in the PL.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on September 01, 2013, 07:30:33 PM
The Mail said that Ilori, Sakho and Moses were in the directors box watching todays game...

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2408403/Victor-Moses-spotted-Anfield-signing-Liverpool-loan-Chelsea.html

Also was nice to see Skrtel today....
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 01, 2013, 08:20:58 PM
Also was nice to see Skrtel today....

But could be gone tomorrow as Napoli are apparently back in for him. Agger, Sakho, Toure and Ilori and Coates to pay without getting use from him for most of the season, could see Skrtel go and see us recoup a big chunk of the Sakho/Ilori outlay.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 01, 2013, 10:03:20 PM
Unbelievably, the Guardian are talking about our title credentials:

http://www.theguardian.com/football/blog/2013/sep/01/liverpool-manchester-united-five-things-learned (http://www.theguardian.com/football/blog/2013/sep/01/liverpool-manchester-united-five-things-learned)

"5) Are Liverpool and Gerrard really so far away from a first title since 1990?

Before kick-off, the home captain had said:

    "I would like to win a Premier League title but at 33 I have to be realistic and say there might only be two or three years left. Realistically I'm quite a distance away from winning the league at the moment. I have to take that on the chin, but I'll never give up fighting for it. Getting back into the Champions League might be a more achievable target – but even that is going to be difficult."

Is this a seasoned professional's realistic view of a team in transition or an overly pessimistic analysis of a side who appear to be on a particularly rapid rise?
"

Yet when we won 3 on the spin last season, nobody, quite rightly so, mentioned anything. It has to be the ultimate in 'knee-jerk journalism'. It's the first three games of the season, so what?
To even consider it is stupid, but to actually write it............
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 01, 2013, 10:44:18 PM
Henry the Armenian got his first and second goals for Dortmund today. 2 goals in 3 games isn't bad, considering the step up in quality of the league. It would be nice to have the reinforcement of a midfielder to supply goals on a regular basis.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 02, 2013, 06:56:22 PM
Van Pursie misses an excellent chance, we're riding our luck far too much.

I don't think we're riding our luck mate, but we do lack control of things which is quite annoying. Less so in this game than against Villa. But as Brendan is evidently a quick learner he'll address this 2nd half problem sooner rather than later. People keep asking whether we have a plan B or not. Thing is we haven't had any use of it just yet and until we do, and depending on how we respond to it, I'll be made up to see us grind out results as opposed to outplay our opponents just to draw/lose games. I've seen United, City, Arsenal and Tottenham winning games although being far far more outplayed and out of control of things than we werein the last 2 games without hearing people calling into question those teams quality.

Again, if we can see it we can rest assured so can Brendan.

I think we've had a tremendous transfer window. We've brought in 4 quality defenders. That goes a long way to show our manager can see and address a problem properly. I am a tad worried Aspas will turn out a new Borini. He looks uncomfy and frightened to be honest. Some say he works hard but so did Riise.  ;D

Coutinho was probably brought back down to earth yesterday. That will help him mature and improve. Henderson works but offers so little, so little in the offensive direction. Lucas keeps up giving away  rather unnecessary free-kicks in dangerous areas.

I actually think Skrtel had a tremendous game and responded well although I feel he won't play at that level for a long series of games. Johnson and Enrique showed we have, on the day, arguably two of the best full-backs in the PL.

I wish Brendan sometime would entertain the idea of making a half-time substitution to kick the team into action. We need to improve our 2nd half performances at the Liberty Stadium or I feel we'll get punished.

All in all a fantastic win that shows there's more to our manager than the alleged obsession with tiki-taka.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 04, 2013, 09:52:05 PM
I don't think we're riding our luck mate, but we do lack control of things which is quite annoying. Less so in this game than against Villa. But as Brendan is evidently a quick learner he'll address this 2nd half problem sooner rather than later. People keep asking whether we have a plan B or not. Thing is we haven't had any use of it just yet and until we do, and depending on how we respond to it, I'll be made up to see us grind out results as opposed to outplay our opponents just to draw/lose games. I've seen United, City, Arsenal and Tottenham winning games although being far far more outplayed and out of control of things than we werein the last 2 games without hearing people calling into question those teams quality.

Again, if we can see it we can rest assured so can Brendan.

I think we've had a tremendous transfer window. We've brought in 4 quality defenders. That goes a long way to show our manager can see and address a problem properly. I am a tad worried Aspas will turn out a new Borini. He looks uncomfy and frightened to be honest. Some say he works hard but so did Riise.  ;D

Coutinho was probably brought back down to earth yesterday. That will help him mature and improve. Henderson works but offers so little, so little in the offensive direction. Lucas keeps up giving away  rather unnecessary free-kicks in dangerous areas.

I actually think Skrtel had a tremendous game and responded well although I feel he won't play at that level for a long series of games. Johnson and Enrique showed we have, on the day, arguably two of the best full-backs in the PL.

I wish Brendan sometime would entertain the idea of making a half-time substitution to kick the team into action. We need to improve our 2nd half performances at the Liberty Stadium or I feel we'll get punished.

All in all a fantastic win that shows there's more to our manager than the alleged obsession with tiki-taka.

Aspas hasn't clicked, it's true, but whilst there's a Hendo, there's hope. The more he plays the more chance he'll get to figure out how the PL works, and what he needs to do differently. The hope I have with his sort of player is that they are technically and tactically better versed than your average British 'guts and passion' type. We've seen far better players than him seemingly struggling to a greater degree, especially when  you consider what they went on to.

We were our own worst enemies second half. We let them back in and then couldn't get get back the rhythm we'd had in the first half, and we did ride our luck. The RVP miss. That's what you call 'getting away with it'.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 04, 2013, 10:10:01 PM
Aspas hasn't clicked, it's true, but whilst there's a Hendo, there's hope. The more he plays the more chance he'll get to figure out how the PL works, and what he needs to do differently. The hope I have with his sort of player is that they are technically and tactically better versed than your average British 'guts and passion' type. We've seen far better players than him seemingly struggling to a greater degree, especially when  you consider what they went on to.

We were our own worst enemies second half. We let them back in and then couldn't get get back the rhythm we'd had in the first half, and we did ride our luck. The RVP miss. That's what you call 'getting away with it'.

I would agree when the situation ocurred I was certain he'd score, watching the behind-goal replay I really thought Mignolet covered the near post in a way it would've taken something out of the ordinary to score but then again if there's one player capable of doing that... Thought we were far more lucky on Bentekes sitter.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 13, 2013, 11:18:24 PM
Rodge a.k.a. manager of the month (contain yourself Martin  :P )
looking relaxed and confident ahead of Swansea...

http://www.merseyreds.com/2013/09/13/brendan-rodgers-pre-swansea-press-conference-free-video-2/

His demeanour & voice are different from those early horror shows
last season.

Anyway, from our perspective (not the rest of the league) this game is
shaping up to be of interest. I'll take 1-0 all day!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 15, 2013, 08:58:34 PM
I'll take 1-0 all day!

It depends whether we get the one or the zero.  ;D

Bigger test than the last match. Let's hope everyone's up to it.

I can't believe the rubbish being written about about 'title challenges'. It's three games. No three win run at any time of the season makes you title challengers. We don't have the required squad depth or quality yet. To think otherwise is to set yourself up for a huge disappointment.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 15, 2013, 10:38:41 PM
I can't believe the rubbish being written about about 'title challenges'. It's three games. No three win run at any time of the season makes you title challengers. We don't have the required squad depth or quality yet. To think otherwise is to set yourself up for a huge disappointment.
TITLE CHALLENGES???

Jesus, I thought it would be deemed a good start to the season,
same way we had a poor one last season.

We've won 3 games 1-0 and not played particularly well in any of
them.

Tomorrow's game is interesting because we're top of the league &
hence there's a bit of pressure to stay there. Gives an indicator
of the mental strength and determination in the side. Things which
may be useful when we go up against the big boys if a challenge
for 4th materialises.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 15, 2013, 11:16:10 PM
TITLE CHALLENGES???

Jesus, I thought it would be deemed a good start to the season,
same way we had a poor one last season.

We've won 3 games 1-0 and not played particularly well in any of
them.

Tomorrow's game is interesting because we're top of the league &
hence there's a bit of pressure to stay there. Gives an indicator
of the mental strength and determination in the side. Things which
may be useful when we go up against the big boys if a challenge
for 4th materialises.

Eggzackerley.

It makes my eyes itch when I read any mention of the words 'title challenge(rs)' and us in the same sentence, but amazingly I'm seeing it quite a bit. Also we're now being listed with the Mancs, Chelsea and Arsenal in other comparisons and lists.

As you say Ed, it's just a good start, albeit only 3 games. If we have 15 points after 6 games, I'll be amazed. 12 from 6 would be a really good start in comparison to last year, where we had 5 points from 6 games and realistically that's what we still should be focusing on, a noticeable improvement on last season.  Looking to finish above any one of the two Mancs, Chelsea, Spurs and Arsenal is still unrealistic at this stage, no matter our points tally after 3 games, as it would require at least a 20% improvement in our points tally, or putting it another way, very nearly 2 points a game, or every 2 game sequence has to be: W, D and a defeat means the 3 game sequence being: L, W, W
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 16, 2013, 07:21:22 PM
Line up vs Swansea:

--------------Mignolet---------------------

Wisdom---Skrtel---Sakho---Jose Enrique

----------------Lucas----------------------

--------Gerrard-----------Henderson-----

------Moses---Sturridge---Coutinho------

Subs: Jones, Toure, Alberto, Aspas, Sterling, Ibe, Kelly

I don't know the in's and out's but if deemed fit I would've preferred Toure over Sakho for this one.

Come on you red men!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 16, 2013, 09:00:27 PM
Brilliant response to Shelvey's opener. Very happy with the first 30, we then fell back a bit. Moses looks very inspiring and so does Sakho minus a slight slip up here and there. Wisdom, I'm sorry to say, looks a liability and needs, IMHO, to come off for Toure. Hopefully we won't continue 2nd half as we finished 1st. We probably need a 3rd goal to win me thinks.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 16, 2013, 09:22:01 PM
Liability indeed.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 16, 2013, 10:11:06 PM
We probably need a 3rd goal to win me thinks.
Very prophetic, Martin.

Our inability to defensively smoother, as shown with Shelvey's goal, still means we will struggle to hold on to a lead with the slightest degree of comfort.

Eriksen already showing why it was a mistake not to go for him.

Still, this time last season we were on 2 points after 4 games, and the fact that we had the longest 100% record with a mere 3 games could suggest the league will be more competitive this season. Still, Chelsea also had the leagues only 100% record after 3 games last season, but the league after 3 and 4 games had a less familiar look about it than it does this season (except for us, of course  ;D).
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 16, 2013, 10:29:36 PM
Very prophetic, Martin.

Our inability to defensively smoother, as shown with Shelvey's goal, still means we will struggle to hold on to a lead with the slightest degree of comfort.

Eriksen already showing why it was a mistake not to go for him.

Still, this time last season we were on 2 points after 4 games, and the fact that we had the longest 100% record with a mere 3 games could suggest the league will be more competitive this season. Still, Chelsea also had the leagues only 100% record after 3 games last season, but the league after 3 and 4 games had a less familiar look about it than it does this season (except for us, of course  ;D).

Wow, first of all hats off to Swansea for a fantastic 2nd half. I don't think they have 10 more of those in them this seasons. So in that sense I was very pleased with the resilience that won us a point. Although we were far more outplayed in this game than against Villa, I don't get the feel we panicked in this game to the same extent we did at Villa Park.

We do look a bit light weight in the middle of the park. I've said it for the last 3-4 years but unless Lucas brings authority and leadership to his gain I don't rate him as highly as many other do. This game was a good example of that as he struggled, in my opinion, heavily to find a proper position on the pitch.

I would suggest this point will have a similar effect on team development as our win against Stoke and for that I am very very happy. It is a pattern, nevertheless, we fade in the 2nd half and Rodgers really need to sort that out or we will be heavily punished.

Moses had a great first half but I feel he's more suited for teams who dominates games. Sakho was indeed very very impressive and astute. What a signing!

As for Eriksen. I don't know mate, it's one game and even if we got him there's no guarantee he'd do for us what he offer Spurs, se Coutinho for reference.

A tricky home fixture against a very talented So'ton awaits. If we can push them high and dominate the center of the part we'll be fine. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 16, 2013, 11:32:26 PM
We do look a bit light weight in the middle of the park. I've said it for the last 3-4 years but unless Lucas brings authority and leadership to his gain I don't rate him as highly as many other do. This game was a good example of that as he struggled, in my opinion, heavily to find a proper position on the pitch.

As good as Lucas is he can't help either his physical size or his amount of pace. We really do need to look for a physical ball winner, preferably with pace, so that in these sort of games, against a good footballing team, with a strong home record, that we can bring that player on to help disrupt the opposition's flow and see out a game when we take the lead.

We can't maintain a high pressing game for the entire 90 minutes so we have to learn to take possession and make it tell in the second half. I don't mean by necessarily scoring or even creating a bunch of chances, but by simply keeping possession of the ball for longer periods, not allowing the opposition to build momentum and confidence. We can give the ball away too easily sometimes by trying to force it too much.
It also less tiring moving about to find space for your team mate to pass to you than it is chasing the opposition and forever closing down. There will be times when the shape of the opposition is such that when we win the ball deep in our own half, that we can counter attack at pace, but other times it's a case of simply keep the ball and knock it around. The opposition will then either be happy to let us play in front of them, which also suits us fine as we hold the lead, or they will get desperate either flying into tackles, which breaks the game up with free kicks (again that suits us fine), or will lose their shape somewhat and we then need to take advantage of that by creating a chance(s).
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 16, 2013, 11:40:24 PM
We do look a bit light weight in the middle of the park. I've said it for the last 3-4 years but unless Lucas brings authority and leadership to his gain I don't rate him as highly as many other do. This game was a good example of that as he struggled, in my opinion, heavily to find a proper position on the pitch.

I would suggest this point will have a similar effect on team development as our win against Stoke and for that I am very very happy. It is a pattern, nevertheless, we fade in the 2nd half and Rodgers really need to sort that out or we will be heavily punished.

Moses had a great first half but I feel he's more suited for teams who dominates games. Sakho was indeed very very impressive and astute. What a signing!

As for Eriksen. I don't know mate, it's one game and even if we got him there's no guarantee he'd do for us what he offer Spurs, se Coutinho for reference.

A tricky home fixture against a very talented So'ton awaits. If we can push them high and dominate the center of the part we'll be fine.

Agreed on the middle of the park Martin. We look very lightweight but I dont blame Lucas. I think he breaks up play well which is why hes in there. For me our weak link in there looked to be Gerrard. He did nothing tonight, the odd long ball. He doesnt break up play, he doesnt get forward quickly, I'm not sure what his role is.

I had a completely different view on Sakhos performance, I thought he was shocking. He reminded me of Djimi Traore. Its only his first game and im sure it will get better.

Moses did well in the first half, tired not long into the second. Sturridge was dangerous, lovely finish again. Aspas frustrated.

All in all we have 10 points and we havent got out of first gear. For me Toure has to be nailed on with Agger as centre back pairing. Skrtel was indecisive and poor again tonight. Its fine being able to do it against United but he is consistently too inconsistent to be a starter for me. Toure on the other hand generally oozes composure.

One game to go before Suarez is back. It might be the catalyst we need to kick on again.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 16, 2013, 11:49:03 PM
As good as Lucas is he can't help either his physical size or his amount of pace. We really do need to look for a physical ball winner, preferably with pace, so that in these sort of games, against a good footballing team, with a strong home record, that we can bring that player on to help disrupt the opposition's flow and see out a game when we take the lead.

We can't maintain a high pressing game for the entire 90 minutes so we have to learn to take possession and make it tell in the second half. I don't mean by necessarily scoring or even creating a bunch of chances, but by simply keeping possession of the ball for longer periods, not allowing the opposition to build momentum and confidence. We can give the ball away too easily sometimes by trying to force it too much.
It also less tiring moving about to find space for your team mate to pass to you than it is chasing the opposition and forever closing down. There will be times when the shape of the opposition is such that when we win the ball deep in our own half, that we can counter attack at pace, but other times it's a case of simply keep the ball and knock it around. The opposition will then either be happy to let us play in front of them, which also suits us fine as we hold the lead, or they will get desperate either flying into tackles, which breaks the game up with free kicks (again that suits us fine), or will lose their shape somewhat and we then need to take advantage of that by creating a chance(s).

I think Rodgers got the defensive line up wrong tonight. We never looked comfortable. We were too easily cut open. Like I was saying in my post above im not sure Lucas is the one to blame, Gerrard put in half a shift tonight and Id have no problem dropping him going forward if needs be. Problem is theres no one there to replace him. Even his free kick when we had all our big men up, he took a ridiculous shot at goal from 30-35 yards out instead of whipping it in.

Our winning streak had to come to an end sooner or later, away to Swansea was always going to be a tough call. Hopefully we will see Toure restored to the team for Saturday and its important we go back to winning ways to keep the momentum up.

And agreed Eriksen was a huge miss
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 18, 2013, 02:41:23 AM
Gerrard put in half a shift tonight and Id have no problem dropping him going forward if needs be. Problem is theres no one there to replace him. Even his free kick when we had all our big men up, he took a ridiculous shot at goal from 30-35 yards out instead of whipping it in.
Seemed to be a huge difference between Stevie & Shelvey in terms of
time on the ball. Not sure we can afford 90 minutes of Stevie week in
week out in the league (i was probably saying this two seasons ago).

Fact is Swansea destroyed us in the second half and we had no answer.

I think he whipped in two nice free kicks in the first half & occasionally
launches one from deep but against the sustained dominance of Swansea
as the match wore on? Hendo'll run his socks off (out of position to accomodate
Coutinho) and Lucas is a busy bee. Not sure where Allen fits in to all of this.

As we saw, in the premier league, it's a young mans game over 90 minutes in
the centre of the park.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Gurdeep on September 18, 2013, 09:37:36 AM
Motormouth is at it again  :'(

http://www.teamtalk.com/news/2483/8927781/Rodgers-ready-for-title-fight (http://www.teamtalk.com/news/2483/8927781/Rodgers-ready-for-title-fight)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 18, 2013, 12:22:30 PM
Seemed to be a huge difference between Stevie & Shelvey in terms of
time on the ball. Not sure we can afford 90 minutes of Stevie week in
week out in the league (i was probably saying this two seasons ago).

Fact is Swansea destroyed us in the second half and we had no answer.

I think he whipped in two nice free kicks in the first half & occasionally
launches one from deep but against the sustained dominance of Swansea
as the match wore on? Hendo'll run his socks off (out of position to accomodate
Coutinho) and Lucas is a busy bee. Not sure where Allen fits in to all of this.

As we saw, in the premier league, it's a young mans game over 90 minutes in
the centre of the park.

I'm not sure if it had anything to do with 3 games in a week for Gerrard or not but for me he was way off the mark in terms of where we need our centre midfield performance to be. It's definitely where we need to strengthen next. Where we finish could depend on it. As you say the second half performance against Swansea was poor. Home games hopefully wont be a problem but I'm not sure what they are going to do to prevent a repeat of that second half away. We do seem to be finding a new level of consistency and thats with the team only occasionally coming out of first gear so far. Ten games in it will be interesting to see how things have settled. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 18, 2013, 12:38:53 PM
Our squads top 4 credentials will be tested early with the news Coutihno has been ruled out until the end of October.

Does Suarez now slot in behind Sturridge?

Alberto scored a hat trick for the reserves, maybe this will give him some more game time too.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 18, 2013, 03:43:09 PM
I'm not sure if it had anything to do with 3 games in a week for Gerrard or not but for me he was way off the mark in terms of where we need our centre midfield performance to be. It's definitely where we need to strengthen next. Where we finish could depend on it. As you say the second half performance against Swansea was poor. Home games hopefully wont be a problem but I'm not sure what they are going to do to prevent a repeat of that second half away. We do seem to be finding a new level of consistency and thats with the team only occasionally coming out of first gear so far. Ten games in it will be interesting to see how things have settled. 
Agree entirely, away from home there's a problem in midfield
Swansea had their attacking energy central and we dumped
ours out on the right.

Now for sure there were a few debutantes in our set up but to
concede the initiative so dramatically & be unable (with substitutions)
to regain a foothold was surprising.

Last season it was more a case of us been hit on the break, I can't recall
a team spending the guts of half an hour dominating us, camped in our
half and relentlessly attacking.

I wouldn't mind but we had the lead, couldn't hold it & then were lucky to
hang on.

It gives an indication of how Swansea viewed us that they felt comfortable
going for a win - down both flanks & through the middle.

I wouldn't necessarily argue with a point, but wasn't happy with the manner
of it and note that the two goals we got were gifts.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on September 18, 2013, 06:50:13 PM
Our squads top 4 credentials will be tested early with the news Coutihno has been ruled out until the end of October.

Does Suarez now slot in behind Sturridge?

Alberto scored a hat trick for the reserves, maybe this will give him some more game time too.

I would think it would have to be a shoo-in for alberto cos the players looked pretty clueless creatively once coutinho left the field...oh and i hope toure is fit for southampton...i hope sakho will be a great success as he showed some good touches but he also showed a lot of bad points, he needs to be eased in...i can understand that he played if toure was unfit...but let's hope he and agger are back to full fitness at the weekend...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 18, 2013, 07:04:37 PM
Talking of Agger and gym injuries:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGXzhWQDkic (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGXzhWQDkic)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 18, 2013, 07:06:44 PM
There are several posts in the Summer transfer thread where we stated we needed cover for the Lucas/Gerrard partnership. Gerrard can't play ever game and the internationals.

Our squad is still thin in certain areas and injuries will stretch us thinner.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 18, 2013, 11:34:23 PM
I would think it would have to be a shoo-in for alberto cos the players looked pretty clueless creatively once coutinho left the field...oh and i hope toure is fit for southampton...i hope sakho will be a great success as he showed some good touches but he also showed a lot of bad points, he needs to be eased in...i can understand that he played if toure was unfit...but let's hope he and agger are back to full fitness at the weekend...

Yeah Alberto does seem like he should make the bench, possibly start saturday. We could possibly see Suarez take Coutinhos place when he returns.

Totally agreed on Sakho. He could become a very astute signing but hes not ready to start if you go by mondays performance. Toures experience and composure needs to be reinstated. And not at right back.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 18, 2013, 11:35:58 PM
Talking of Agger and gym injuries:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGXzhWQDkic (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGXzhWQDkic)

Haha, two torn hamstrings and possibly some paralysis.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 18, 2013, 11:40:43 PM
There are several posts in the Summer transfer thread where we stated we needed cover for the Lucas/Gerrard partnership. Gerrard can't play ever game and the internationals.

Our squad is still thin in certain areas and injuries will stretch us thinner.

Yet to see anything of Allen this season either. I dont think Rodgers trusts him. We will have to see how Gerrard will fare playing one game a week. Talk of a possible Alonso return in January. Id take it if he proved his fitness and the price was right. We have to be looking at that position long term though.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 20, 2013, 03:50:08 PM
Yet to see anything of Allen this season either. I dont think Rodgers trusts him. We will have to see how Gerrard will fare playing one game a week. Talk of a possible Alonso return in January. Id take it if he proved his fitness and the price was right. We have to be looking at that position long term though.

Completely agree, Juan. When we're essentially playing with a two man screen of the defence, it makes no sense to have not even a single player to cover the position.

It's hard to know what to make of the Allen situation. We can be fair to him and blame last season on getting the shoulder injury relatively early in the season, playing out of position and being at a new club with greater pressure and expectation than he's ever experienced, and the £15M price was not his doing, either.
But then none of that explains this season. Considering how much football Gerrard had played this season already and two internationals in a week before before the Swansea game, you would have thought Allen would have stood a chance, especially being away from home and with the need to keep possession, especially in our second half fades.

Our whole midfield setup and the particular kinds of players we have and don't have need close examination between now and January and an addition somewhere needs to be made. We're not particularly strong physically, creatively or in terms of goal scoring, and neither are we blessed with a deal of pace overall either. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 21, 2013, 10:54:11 AM
Sorry folks but I have this very very bad feeling about So'ton at home this afternoon. Injuries been hard on us + we seem to struggle to keep our game together for a full 90. 1-2 I predict.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 21, 2013, 11:46:35 AM
Sorry folks but I have this very very bad feeling about So'ton at home this afternoon. Injuries been hard on us + we seem to struggle to keep our game together for a full 90. 1-2 I predict.
Geez, nudder dreadful presser

http://www.merseyreds.com/2013/09/19/brendan-rodgers-pre-southampton-press-conference-free-video/

Can he not just do 5 minutes and then say that's all
I have to say bye! When he starts on about Kolo Toure
being a humble guy, I mean this mania for humble guys
and eulogies about our sainted squad. He just feels like a
guy selling self-help books.

I never heard Roy Keane referred to as a humble guy by Ferguson.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on September 21, 2013, 02:09:52 PM
Sorry folks but I have this very very bad feeling about So'ton at home this afternoon. Injuries been hard on us + we seem to struggle to keep our game together for a full 90. 1-2 I predict.

I find your lack of faith...disturbing, Martin.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 21, 2013, 04:02:10 PM
I find your lack of faith...disturbing, Martin.

I know, I feel dirty inside.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 21, 2013, 05:17:21 PM
Sorry folks but I have this very very bad feeling about So'ton at home this afternoon. Injuries been hard on us + we seem to struggle to keep our game together for a full 90. 1-2 I predict.

I wasnt feeling comfortable myself after seeing the team sheet. Today though wasnt about injuries. Simply Rodgers got it wrong. Starting with 4 centre backs was an awful call and he has to take the blame.

We have been on this run spanning from the end of last season, our defense has been solid yet we are adamant to just give the new players their place without making them work for it. Moses I dont mind so much hes done in the PL before now. Toure has been rock solid too. But Aspas and Sakho should be made work for their start.

Today it just seemed like he didnt want to drop any of our centre backs so instead he decided to play them all even if it was square pegs in round holes etc etc. Going forward he has to man up and do whats best for the team. For me thats Toure and Agger if they are fit while playing fullbacks in the full back positions.

Still not such a bad start to the season. Suarez to come back is massive. I am worried about our centre midfield though. I'm not sure Gerrard has the ability to take a game by the scruff of its neck anymore.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 21, 2013, 05:26:41 PM
I wasnt feeling comfortable myself after seeing the team sheet. Today though wasnt about injuries. Simply Rodgers got it wrong. Starting with 4 centre backs was an awful call and he has to take the blame.

We have been on this run spanning from the end of last season, our defense has been solid yet we are adamant to just give the new players their place without making them work for it. Moses I dont mind so much hes done in the PL before now. Toure has been rock solid too. But Aspas and Sakho should be made work for their start.

Today it just seemed like he didnt want to drop any of our centre backs so instead he decided to play them all even if it was square pegs in round holes etc etc. Going forward he has to man up and do whats best for the team. For me thats Toure and Agger if they are fit while playing fullbacks in the full back positions.

Still not such a bad start to the season. Suarez to come back is massive. I am worried about our centre midfield though. I'm not sure Gerrard has the ability to take a game by the scruff of its neck anymore.

I agree with a lot Juan. I do feel that Skrtel was back to his normal self after two above par performances. His acting that led up to the corner the won the game from was nothing short of criminal. I hope he doesn't feature anytime soon again.

I would also agree the line-up was spurious to say the least. At the same time it's evident Aspas, Henderson and Lucas just aren't good enough.

Worst of all tho was the lack of urgency given our incredible "confidence". On the other hand, if the ref would've awarded us that peno it probably would've ended differently.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 21, 2013, 05:45:00 PM
I agree with a lot Juan. I do feel that Skrtel was back to his normal self after two above par performances. His acting that led up to the corner the won the game from was nothing short of criminal. I hope he doesn't feature anytime soon again.

I would also agree the line-up was spurious to say the least. At the same time it's evident Aspas, Henderson and Lucas just aren't good enough.

Worst of all tho was the lack of urgency given our incredible "confidence". On the other hand, if the ref would've awarded us that peno it probably would've ended differently.

Yeah theres no doubt Skrtel is capable of putting in a big performance but his problem has always been consistency and concentration. Hes too prone to errors. Sakho Ive no doubt will prove a great acquisition but there has been no need to put him in straight away with the form Toures been in. Before Monday we had 3 clean sheets but even with Aggers injury we changed it up too much and we have paid the price.

Aspas deserves his chance but again I'm not sure what hes done to warrant a starting place considering he was ear marked as a squad signing and not necessarily a first teamer. Saying that with Coutihno out it was probably fair he got a run today but maybe Rodgers needs to introduce him slowly from the bench until hes up to the pace of the Premier league. So far hes been miles off being good enough.

Henderson has a good engine but he lacks from a technical perspective.  Lucas does a job. For me he warrants a place more than Gerrard at the moment.

Today was probably inevitable because all of our wins before today have been achieved sluggishly and not getting out of first gear. 

People need to step up in Coutihnos absence.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on September 21, 2013, 06:00:06 PM
So we have 4 centre halves on the field and we still can't defend against a header...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 21, 2013, 06:21:59 PM

People need to step up in Coutihnos absence.

That sentence alone captures the one big problem we face and it goes some way to prove Rodger's words a tad hollow if I'm honest.

It was a bad game from Rodgers. We can only hope he's doing his homework well as he usually does. I don't mind see Toure start ahead of Wisdom as he was a liability on Monday night. But I don't get why he rested Enrique who has shown such good form of late.

Even my Manc mate say we probably have the best CB pair in Toure and Sakho.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 21, 2013, 06:26:14 PM
At least he's honest about it. From the offal:

Quote
The Reds suffered their first defeat of 2013-14 as Dejan Lovren's second-half header secured three points for the visitors.

Afterwards, Rodgers was honest in his appraisal of his side's performance.

He told his post-match press conference: "I think both [the result and performance] were very disappointing, in all honesty.

"We never really got going from the off - it was a bit lethargic and technically we were short today, so it was a very disappointing result and performance for us.

"As I said, technically, I was really disappointed today. I thought we never really got going and we were flat and slow in our game.

"Which hasn't been like us. We've normally started games very well. But we'll just put it down as one of those days and now we need to go on another good run."

Rodgers elected to select a back four consisting of Kolo Toure, Daniel Agger, Martin Skrtel and Mamadou Sakho for the contest - and reporters quizzed the boss on his reasoning.

He explained: "It was really what we had available. We've got Glen Johnson out injured and Martin Kelly's only returning - he's had a few games, but he's still trying to work up his fitness having been out for a year.

"Jose Enrique is one we've got to keep an eye on his knee. He's got an issue with his knee and if there is an overload on that, it could maybe put him out longer term. We've got Cissokho out already, so it [Enrique's knee] was one we needed to keep an eye on.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 21, 2013, 08:06:37 PM
For honesty we get 'nul points'.

As the saying goes, 'if you can't be good, be lucky', which we were in the first three games. Today we were neither.

At least maybe reality will now set in.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 21, 2013, 08:16:55 PM
People need to step up in (fill in the name) absence.

Juan, how long have we been saying that? It seems to be for a very long time.

This is where the idea of buying two players for £15M rather than one for £16M seems to have been our undoing for too long. Concentrate on quality and fill in the quantity with young players if need be. It gives a more stable team, fewer new players to integrate and we may just get a hero rise up from one of the young lads.
Despite the more obvious problems, I'm convinced that this is why Arsenal always find themselves in the Top Four come the end of the season, as they have a stable core line up and less new faces to integrate.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 21, 2013, 11:45:35 PM
Injury problems of Kelly/Johnson leaving us without a senior right back, and the curse of both left backs being injured, really bit us on the a$$ today.

Wouldn't it have been better to play Gerrard as a no10 instead of Henderson and use Henderson's energy deeper in midfield where Gerrard simply appears to now lack the legs.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 21, 2013, 11:55:55 PM
The only positive to come out of that shambles is that we lost by only one goal.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 22, 2013, 12:14:09 AM
Injury problems of Kelly/Johnson leaving us without a senior right back, and the curse of both left backs being injured, really bit us on the a$$ today.
Dunno Tes, we seemed to make it hard on ourselves today playing out
from the back with 4 centre backs.

& sure Southampton came with a simple plan to press high up.

I remember Rodgers saying last season, how were this to happen, the solution
was to pass it over their heads to the gaps they leave (whatever!) - instead it appears we
continue with increasing desperation to play it out from the back!!!

I haven't seen the game (off to dig it up) just watched the highlights on MOTD.

No disguising that it is a desperately poor result though. Manager isn't angry, just
one of those days.

You see I never bought into results we got in the back end of last season, when the
pressure was off, & was surprised to see the gaffer continually refer to those results
this season. What I see is an appalling home result (my understanding is that
the performance was also appalling) coming on the back of a shocking last 30
minutes against Swansea - where neither the manager or the players could turn it around.

Maybe Swansea and Southampton are the best teams in the division but I'd have been
very angry today in the post match, most particularly because the team started the day
with the opportunity to hold onto their position in the league, with a draw or win in a home
game and finished the day ceding the position (it's not particularly relevant that it was the
top spot).

Makes a mockery of notions of maturity, mental toughness and resilience!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 22, 2013, 12:26:16 AM
The only positive to come out of that shambles is that we lost by only one goal.

Agreed
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 22, 2013, 12:29:45 AM
Juan, how long have we been saying that? It seems to be for a very long time.

This is where the idea of buying two players for £15M rather than one for £16M seems to have been our undoing for too long. Concentrate on quality and fill in the quantity with young players if need be. It gives a more stable team, fewer new players to integrate and we may just get a hero rise up from one of the young lads.
Despite the more obvious problems, I'm convinced that this is why Arsenal always find themselves in the Top Four come the end of the season, as they have a stable core line up and less new faces to integrate.

In fairness thats generally the approach we are trying to take now. Its not necessarily about how much we are willing to spend but we are now trying to buy a certain type of player, technically capable players. It looks like it might take Aspas a while to show if hes capable or not but its far too early for us to write him or any of the other new players off.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 22, 2013, 12:55:19 AM
You see I never bought into results we got in the back end of last season, when the
pressure was off, & was surprised to see the gaffer continually refer to those results
this season. What I see is an appalling home result (my understanding is that
the performance was also appalling) coming on the back of a shocking last 30
minutes against Swansea - where neither the manager or the players could turn it around.

Maybe Swansea and Southampton are the best teams in the division but I'd have been
very angry today in the post match, most particularly because the team started the day
with the opportunity to hold onto their position in the league, with a draw or win in a home
game and finished the day ceding the position (it's not particularly relevant that it was the
top spot).

Makes a mockery of notions of maturity, mental toughness and resilience!

I dont necessarily think it was one of those days. I dont think we have performed well yet this season at all. However we have shown an ability to get results while playing badly and I know from the second half of last season we are capable of playing well. So if we can pick up points doing both this season hopefully we can challenge for fourth.

I havent seen the Rodgers interview yet and I think hes doing a good job but I hold him completely accountable today and he should probably take some of the blame for Monday night also. I know Agger got injured, as did Toure for the United game but we had seen enough in the first 3 games to know the defence doesnt need tinkering especially with new buys being played for the sake of being played. Toure shouldve started central either beside Agger, Sakho or Skrtel. Enrique shouldve started left and either Kelly or Wisdom right. When I saw the team lineup I moaned I'm sure like every other Liverpool fan. It just looked as if he was playing all four centre backs because he didnt want to drop any of them.

I'm not sure what type of football we are trying to play this season because the sharp quick pass and move seems to have broken down aswell. Players arent showing for each other enough, theres no sustained team pressurising of the opposition like there has been in the past and the team lacks fluidity. 

Today is a reality check. I genuinely think Rodgers is building something worthwhile at the club but he needs to take the courageous decisions of putting out a team for the right reasons because that starting back four certainly didnt seems to be picked for the right reasons today and for me the defence cost us for the second game running.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 22, 2013, 01:52:25 AM
I'm not sure what type of football we are trying to play this season because the sharp quick pass and move seems to have broken down aswell. Players arent showing for each other enough, theres no sustained team pressurising of the opposition like there has been in the past and the team lacks fluidity. 

Today is a reality check.
I haven't seen the game Juan but what worries me is, Swansea showed the way
against us on Monday, almost attack is the best form of defence, they kept coming
forward at us, so there was no time or space for us to do the usual pass the ball to
death thing. They were also buoyed on by some very old-fashioned banging of
drums by their home supporters.

Today from what I say in the highlights it was simply a tactic of the team pressing
us high up the pitch, which seemed to totally unnerve us.

Swansea came at us in the centre of the park and encroached into our half with
their own decent passing game & Southampton had a variation on that i.e. we don't
need the passing bit if we just apply the pressure at the jugular with simple energy.

So it goes back to the much debated question of only plan A: How brittle is it? Have
so-called lesser teams sussed it? Two different sets of tactics home and away in space
of a week have proven very effective against us.

& other teams are watching...

It's not the counter-attack stuff & big striker thing which used catch us out last season.

It's actually the pluckiness of the opposition to have a go, a belief they seem to have in
the last two games which would have me wondering...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 22, 2013, 12:01:40 PM
What really hurts the most, besides the lacklustre performance, is the fact we lost one-nil. I'd much rather we lost 1-2 or 2-3.

In fairness we have probably played the two most in-form teams in the league in the span of 5 days. I'm not making excuses I just don't think either Swansea nor So'ton have Another 10 games like  this in them this season.

Just as there was no reason to gett carried away with the opening three wins, there's no reason to resort to negativity and anti-Rodgers rants after this poor result. It remains a fact that with all players available we're deffo in it with a shout, 3-4 injuries and we're less so. I have no doubt in my mind that with Johnson, Enrique, Coutinho and Suarez we would've stood on 15 Points today.

Besides having a thing squad I would say our center midfield is becoming the main problem for us with non of Lucas, Henderson and even Gerrard looking even remotely close to being good enough for enginge a 4th spot. Lucas may well pass 43 out of 45 sideways/backwards balls spot on but he NEVER EVER offers leadership in his role as holding midfielder. I won't rule out Gerrard but Lucas and Henderson for me raises big questions of whether we can reach 70 points this season.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 23, 2013, 12:02:57 AM
Today from what I say in the highlights it was simply a tactic of the team pressing
us high up the pitch, which seemed to totally unnerve us.

Swansea came at us in the centre of the park and encroached into our half with
their own decent passing game & Southampton had a variation on that i.e. we don't
need the passing bit if we just apply the pressure at the jugular with simple energy.

So it goes back to the much debated question of only plan A: How brittle is it? Have
so-called lesser teams sussed it? Two different sets of tactics home and away in space
of a week have proven very effective against us.

& other teams are watching...

It's not the counter-attack stuff & big striker thing which used catch us out last season.

It's actually the pluckiness of the opposition to have a go, a belief they seem to have in
the last two games which would have me wondering...

Southampton were all over us like a rash from our kick out alright. I think the fact that our defense was so unfamiliar probably added to the sense of uncertainty. I dont necessarily think we've being found out but its definitely something that needs to be addressed.

As for our plan A, at the moment it just doesnt look like its being incorporated effectively yet this season. We had only managed to play well in patches up to yesterday without showing the type of football we watched in the second half of last season. I assumed there would be a marked improvement in performance starting yesterday but such hope went out the window with the line up. It will be interesting to see how we respond over the next five games in the league. They could define how our season will take shape. If we can pull things together and start a new run of wins yesterday will prove to be a blip. Dropping more points in the same fashion as yesterday could see us struggle. We cant afford to start playing catch up this early.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 23, 2013, 12:29:00 AM
In fairness thats generally the approach we are trying to take now. Its not necessarily about how much we are willing to spend but we are now trying to buy a certain type of player, technically capable players. It looks like it might take Aspas a while to show if hes capable or not but its far too early for us to write him or any of the other new players off.

Every game I've seen Aspas in there's been a moment where he's done something which offers some sort of promise, therefore I'm hopeful we'll see something more once he's got used to the pace and the more physical aspect. I've certainly got more hope for him than I have for Borini.
I wonder what his best position is and if he's going to get to play in it. That may be the thing that proves a deciding factor as to whether he settles long term or not.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 23, 2013, 12:31:19 AM

Just as there was no reason to gett carried away with the opening three wins, there's no reason to resort to negativity and anti-Rodgers rants after this poor result. It remains a fact that with all players available we're deffo in it with a shout, 3-4 injuries and we're less so. I have no doubt in my mind that with Johnson, Enrique, Coutinho and Suarez we would've stood on 15 Points today.

Besides having a thing squad I would say our center midfield is becoming the main problem for us with non of Lucas, Henderson and even Gerrard looking even remotely close to being good enough for enginge a 4th spot. Lucas may well pass 43 out of 45 sideways/backwards balls spot on but he NEVER EVER offers leadership in his role as holding midfielder. I won't rule out Gerrard but Lucas and Henderson for me raises big questions of whether we can reach 70 points this season.

I dont think theres been any anti Rodgers rants as such after yesterday Martin. I'm willing to give Rodgers a fair crack of the whip. For me hes doing a very good job at the club. But just like hes deserves acknowledgement when things are working I think we cant ignore scenarios when he gets it wrong too. For me yesterday was one of those days and I feel his defensive line up cost us and allowed Southampton the chance to grow into the game.

I do think 70 points is achievable. We still have our weak spots, we are all agreed that middle of the park looks particularly weak. It could be time to start seeing whether Allen can cut it or not. There are big questions over Henderson Gerard and to some degree Lucas although I think hes still been the best of the three. For me Rodgers needs to go back to what he knows and whats been working. Toure has to start central. It could be time to give Stevie a wake up call too. Nobody should be un droppable because at times we look like we are playing with 10 hes contributing so little.

I'm very optimistic and probably just hopeful too that yesterday was nothing more than once off bad decision making from the gaffer and a bad day at the office for the players. You will hear talk of a reaction now, with the United game seen as a perfect opportunity. But for me the reaction needs to be winning the next 3 league games to prove we do mean business and this start wasnt down to luck and a favorable fixture list.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 23, 2013, 12:35:29 AM
Every game I've seen Aspas in there's been a moment where he's done something which offers some sort of promise, therefore I'm hopeful we'll see something more once he's got used to the pace and the more physical aspect. I've certainly got more hope for him than I have for Borini.
I wonder what his best position is and if he's going to get to play in it. That may be the thing that proves a deciding factor as to whether he settles long term or not.

Agreed Tes. A goal or two could change everything for Aspas. He was poor on Saturday but he was also probably treated like a bit of a scapegoat by being subbed at half time. It could have easily been 6 other players but he just seems to be the easy one to take off.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 23, 2013, 12:57:58 AM
Agreed Tes. A goal or two could change everything for Aspas. He was poor on Saturday but he was also probably treated like a bit of a scapegoat by being subbed at half time. It could have easily been 6 other players but he just seems to be the easy one to take off.

There was one piece of link up play with Sturridge (I think it was) where he received the ball, turned his man and then slipped a lovely weighted pass into Sturridge.

I think if our play was flowing rather than juddering it would enable him to settle quicker and contribute much more.
I agree he was no more or less the obvious candidate to come off and as we weren't blessed with options on the bench, then keeping him on the pitch would be more beneficial to his form and confidence.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 23, 2013, 01:27:12 AM
From: http://www.theguardian.com/football/2013/sep/22/liverpool-southampton-premier-league (http://www.theguardian.com/football/2013/sep/22/liverpool-southampton-premier-league)

On the summer transfer policy Rodgers said: "We were on the look-out for a No10 but we were unable to get one."

During that same transfer window he said more than once that he wanted a left sided forward so he could move Coutinho to be our no 10, and just last week he stated that Coutinho was one of the best no 10s in the league.

Maybe that's an insight into why the Summer window appeared to be rather muddled and haphazard. I appreciate bringing in players for the future but our budget isn't one where we can build for the present (as we still need to do) and pick up players for the future also.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 23, 2013, 01:48:52 AM
Southampton were all over us like a rash from our kick out alright. I think the fact that our defense was so unfamiliar probably added to the sense of uncertainty. I dont necessarily think we've being found out but its definitely something that needs to be addressed.

As for our plan A, at the moment it just doesnt look like its being incorporated effectively yet this season. We had only managed to play well in patches up to yesterday without showing the type of football we watched in the second half of last season. I assumed there would be a marked improvement in performance starting yesterday but such hope went out the window with the line up. It will be interesting to see how we respond over the next five games in the league. They could define how our season will take shape. If we can pull things together and start a new run of wins yesterday will prove to be a blip. Dropping more points in the same fashion as yesterday could see us struggle. We cant afford to start playing catch up this early.
Luis coming back will put the frighteners on a lot of teams methinks.
They can ill-afford to be too confident in defence and may sit back more as
the nature of the disturbance he creates ripples into midfield. In both
the Swansea & Southampton game it was apparent to me that the teams
were too comfortable containing our threat going forward and used it
as a launch pad to gain a foothold. We need to suck their players back
into their own half and then just patrol the counter.

I'd say simply that we didn't look remotely like a team yesterday &
yes the nature of changes hardly helped matters at the back. Further
forward you take out our number 1 provider Coutinho and all of a sudden
we're exposed and the balance is upset by a certain one-dimensionality in
Sturridge's role as number 1 consumer - lad needs to learn how to pass!

But having said that, Lee Dixon foresaw problems (as I'm sure did many others)
as soon as he saw the teamsheet. So I wouldn't exonerate the gaffer and
was less than impressed with his managing of the situation.

From: http://www.theguardian.com/football/2013/sep/22/liverpool-southampton-premier-league (http://www.theguardian.com/football/2013/sep/22/liverpool-southampton-premier-league)

On the summer transfer policy Rodgers said: "We were on the look-out for a No10 but we were unable to get one."
Did he try hard enough for Eriksen??
Sure he was saying the other day that the defence was sorted for the next
ten years and then it becomes the root cause of failure in the next game?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 23, 2013, 11:51:22 AM
I'm very optimistic and probably just hopeful too that yesterday was nothing more than once off bad decision making from the gaffer and a bad day at the office for the players. You will hear talk of a reaction now, with the United game seen as a perfect opportunity. But for me the reaction needs to be winning the next 3 league games to prove we do mean business and this start wasnt down to luck and a favorable fixture list.

Totally agree there Juan. A proper reaction would be 10  points from our next 4 games. Having said that, it is a bit unfortunate though that Di Canio got the sack this weekend rather than next. Teams with a new manager always seem to react positively, so in that sense this will probably the toughest game of the season to play the Black Cats at the Stadium of Light.

What Brendan really really needs to do know is to take out the squad sheet, name his no. 1 CB-pair and stick with it. IMHO, he should go for Toure and Sakho. Agger messed up yet again (2nd time this season) and Skrtel showed incredible incompetence (again) in the situation that led to the corner.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 23, 2013, 08:53:30 PM
Having said that, it is a bit unfortunate though that Di Canio got the sack this weekend rather than next. Teams with a new manager always seem to react positively, so in that sense this will probably the toughest game of the season to play the Black Cats at the Stadium of Light.


Martin, it's probably better for us this way. There can be no complacency about an easy 3 points against one of this season's (so far) whipping boys. The last thing we need is this group of players thinking 'it will be an easier game' and they've to only turn up.
They really need to focus and try and get things to click. It's been a slow start to the season and they've escaped with getting maximum points from the first three games and only conceding one against Southampton.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 24, 2013, 12:15:39 AM
I hope we put out the strongest possible team on Wednesday night. Forget what competition it is, we need to bounce back from that woeful defeat and display, and also make sure it doesn't become three games without a win, that's without considering the opposition.

This is where the lack of depth of cover for Lucas and Gerrard will hamstring us. Ideally both play in this game, then one gets rested for the next league game, with the other being rested for the game after.

Maybe he thinks he can do that by bringing in Allen for both of them alternatively. He should be able to. Sunderland away and Palace at home shouldn't be the two most testing games of the season, but with Coutinho missing and most of our creativity it seems with him, suddenly goals are going to be at a premium, and therefore keeping them out takes on even greater importance than it would otherwise do. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 24, 2013, 05:11:55 PM
Martin, it's probably better for us this way. There can be no complacency about an easy 3 points against one of this season's (so far) whipping boys. The last thing we need is this group of players thinking 'it will be an easier game' and they've to only turn up.
They really need to focus and try and get things to click. It's been a slow start to the season and they've escaped with getting maximum points from the first three games and only conceding one against Southampton.

We shall see. My experience tells me a side with a newly appointed manager usually gets a massive energy injection that may last for a couple of rounds. But as you say, it's pretty much down to us to get a result. Maybe the return of Suarez will go some way to mitigate whatever positive they get from their new manager. I would also agree about our slow start to the season bar, possibly, the Stoke game, where I thought we did enough to be up at least 3-0 before their penalty kick.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 24, 2013, 05:13:41 PM
I hope we put out the strongest possible team on Wednesday night.

Me too, if only to increase our chances of winning the game and pile pressure on Moyes. I don't think losing to us twice in less than 3 weeks and twice in 3 days will go down well with the OT faithful.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 25, 2013, 03:32:09 AM
Me too, if only to increase our chances of winning the game and pile pressure on Moyes. I don't think losing to us twice in less than 3 weeks and twice in 3 days will go down well with the OT faithful.
Nah, we need to get a result in the game to keep alive an opportunity
of qualifying for Europe i.e. the priority is progression to the next round of
the competition. Beating Utd. in a early round of the cup is a bonus, puts
a smile on the face.

Moyes is an irrelevance to us, any short-term pain he endures may be of
interest to City, Chelsea, Arsenal etc., who might be poised to take advantage
of it this season.

Just to re-iterate, our goal this season is to get top 4 - would take a miracle but hey!
Failing that, our goal is to qualify for the Europa League by winning a cup or
through the league position - sad but true.
Additionally we'll try to win the 2 cup competitions we're in.

Based on this analysis, should we lose tomorrow our opportunity for silverware
this season will be halved & entry to Europe next season made less likely though
not impossible. So for these reasons it's probably more important that we win, though
I'm sure both teams will try to win and Wazza was saying something about it being
a chance for redemption for them on the back of the City mauling.

I still think that Rodgers would view this trophy plus a very respectable league campaign
as success, so the damage done to us for this season would be greater (Moyes may
ultimately be more concerned this season with getting out of the CL group stages).
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 25, 2013, 10:32:56 AM
We definitely owe Moyes one from when Everton knocked us out of the FA Cup, but the immediate priority is to make sure we don't make it 3 games without a win and we start to develop some sort of form.

And the bigger picture is that we need to win this competition to assure ourselves of European football next season. That is vital.
If we lose, as Ed says, we halve our chance of a trophy, and we reduce by a third our chances of seeing European football at Anfield next season. Not being in the CL has harmed Spurs ability to attract players much less than us not being in Europe at all has harmed ours.
We may look down on the Europa League in this country (I can't understand why), but other European countries and players from other countries, rightfully take it seriously and understand that playing European football is important.

Bob Paisley wasn't deterred by an ugly trophy and a stupid name when winning the Milk Cup for the first years of it's re-branding, so why should we be turning our noses up at any silverware.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 25, 2013, 09:50:30 PM
Disappointing result, encouraging performance in many aspects. It's obvious we're on a goal drought and gets nothing for free. Two hits in the woodwork and a few good chances created is defenitely a step forward from the last 2 games. I also thought we had the best or 2nd best 2nd half this season. Our passing game was sublime at times. A tad sloppy goal to concede but anyone who ever played a game of footy knows you're vulnerable in the opening minute of a game/half.

Player rating:

Mignolet 8: Did very well on Rooney's very well taken shots. Isn't as comfortable with the ball at his feet as Reina, but then again, who is? Best shot stopper in the PL?

Toure 7: Made no errors but we miss Johnson's offensive qualities.

Skrtel 7: Deffo an improvement on the So'ton game.

Sakho 6: Looks a bit error prone at times but looks a monster tackler. Will come a great signing.

Enrique 6: At fault for their goal but did a good job defensively over all. Too many errors in the forward direction.

Henderson 5: Offers next to nothing and really had a poor finishing 20. Needs to rest a few games me thinks.

Gerrard 4: Looks jaded, almost ill, if not uninterested. Something's not right with our captain and I think he too needs a rest.

Lucas 6: Started very well but faded. Failed as per usual to offer leadership and help us get a grip of the game.

Moses 6: Was involved in som of our better attacks but seem to struggle to find his position.

Sturridge 6: I don't know. Maybe this is the real Sturridge we've seen the last 2 games. He struggles though. No doubt about it.

Suarez 8: You have to give him an 8 just for that extra energy he brings to the team. Not unexpectedly he faded after 65. It'll probably be November Before he's back to full match fitness.

All in all a step in the right direction. If we can build on the opening 65 minutes we should be able to get a good result at the Stadium of light.

Johnson and Coutinho can't return soon enough.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 25, 2013, 10:02:31 PM
All in all a step in the right direction.
The direction of not winning a trophy this season?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on September 25, 2013, 11:37:32 PM
For reasons best known and kept within the manager's office, Gerrard and Lucas have no cover what so ever in the squad. That's two of the core players, two crucial positions if we our to improve on last season's defending, who are going to be expected to play ever game this season without a rest, avoiding both injury and suspension.
I guess the silver lining where they are concerned from tonight is that there is nothing but league games now until January to add to any international appearances they may have to make.

Does anybody know whether we are supposed to be man-marking or zonally marking at set pieces?

We need a defensive coach because quite honestly our defending will see us struggle to climb two places to fifth, nevermind fourth, and this was the best opportunity out of the three (5th place being the third and hardest to achieve) to qualify for European football as so many clubs would be playing weakened or radically changed teams.

It's bitterly disappointing to have lost to what is a 'not much better than average' team under Moyes. He's blunted their attacking thrust more than any opposition manager has been able to do in the last 25 years.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 29, 2013, 04:00:28 PM
Expecting a victory today (c'mon the Black Cats are
bottom with no manager! - disarray). Need one, or what seemed
a good start to the league (if disastrous Capital One campaign
is excluded) will revert to an ok one.

Sad to see Gerrard anchoring another Away midfield though
(he needs to hold onto possession today!), would prefer the
boss to let Hendo run that show - he showed at Old Trafford
that he has the dynamism needed for away games.

Expecting to see Luis on the scoresheet - can't keep him down
for long and he was unlucky at OT.

3-0! & a much needed boost to our top 4 campaign!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 29, 2013, 06:52:45 PM
Disappointing first 30 minutes. I thought we responded well in the 2nd half and although they clawed a goal back we played our best 2nd half of the season.

Suarez' return's a massive massive boost for the team. But please Rodgers you need to rest Henderson he's so poor it's unbelieveable in the forward direction.

Well done red men!!!  :)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on September 29, 2013, 07:47:32 PM
Good result and we played in part quite well...in other parts we weren't so good and the midfield ain't good at all...luckily we have suarez and sturridge who are pretty top at the moment...if we could have added a quality midfielder things even might look promising. Some nice play at times as well, in attack anyway...
Can't complain about being second, but am not getting carried away...if we can beat palace then we might have coutinho back after that and moses certainly looks decent...thought gerrard looked shattered...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 29, 2013, 08:09:04 PM
Good result and we played in part quite well...in other parts we weren't so good and the midfield ain't good at all...luckily we have suarez and sturridge who are pretty top at the moment...if we could have added a quality midfielder things even might look promising. Some nice play at times as well, in attack anyway...
Can't complain about being second, but am not getting carried away...if we can beat palace then we might have coutinho back after that and moses certainly looks decent...thought gerrard looked shattered...

I would agree with most of that Bart, bar, perhaps, the Moses bit. Individually he's good no doubt, but as a team player I more often than not end up scratching my head. We desperately need a physically - read Dembeler, Diamé, Wanyama - strong midfielder.

As you correctly say the midfield more and more looks like our achilles heel. The more I think of it the more I actually believe this "ooh, Lucas is soooo good" comment is just a cool thing to say, not based at all on any hard fact. Yes' he has his moments, and yes he's pretty good at breaking up opponent's play. But he's also damn good at picking up unnecessary cards anf free-kicks while at the same time he offers no authority, no bravery, no leadership, no guts. I actually think he's half-decent.

Gerrard needs to be replaced. For me  (and I've watched this club play on a regular basis since 1979) he's the greatest player to ever wear a red shirt. But time has come to call it a day. I'm not saying he should be dropped instantly but phased out over the course of the season.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on September 29, 2013, 09:23:05 PM

Gerrard needs to be replaced. For me  (and I've watched this club play on a regular basis since 1979) he's the greatest player to ever wear a red shirt. But time has come to call it a day. I'm not saying he should be dropped instantly but phased out over the course of the season.

I think if Gerrard was used sparingly then he could still be useful...the problem is that he's playing all the liverpool games as well as the england ones..it shows now...he was hardly mentioned cos he can't do the full 90 anymore...

Eriksen could have been perfect to act as cover for gerrard...to learn from him and to be eased into the squad...and spurs got him for 12 mil? bad bad missed opportunity....
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 29, 2013, 10:14:33 PM
I think if Gerrard was used sparingly then he could still be useful...the problem is that he's playing all the liverpool games as well as the england ones..it shows now...he was hardly mentioned cos he can't do the full 90 anymore...

Eriksen could have been perfect to act as cover for gerrard...to learn from him and to be eased into the squad...and spurs got him for 12 mil? bad bad missed opportunity....

Or not. We just don't know that mate. He could've been a flop and for all I know he's just got a couple of games under the belt for Spurs. I don't know why everybody's making him out to be the next Cantona-Zidane-Messi-Ronaldo in one.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 29, 2013, 11:01:25 PM
Wasnt able to catch todays game. Much needed 3 points especially considering the results over the weekend. If we are to have any chance of putting up a fight for a top 4 place we have to take advantage of the other top sides slipping up.

How was Sakho? I havent been impressed as of yet but obviously its very early days. So far for me hes looked unpredictable and thats the last thing you need from a centre back.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 30, 2013, 01:39:33 AM
As you correctly say the midfield more and more looks like our achilles heel. The more I think of it the more I actually believe this "ooh, Lucas is soooo good" comment is just a cool thing to say, not based at all on any hard fact. Yes' he has his moments, and yes he's pretty good at breaking up opponent's play. But he's also damn good at picking up unnecessary cards anf free-kicks while at the same time he offers no authority, no bravery, no leadership, no guts. I actually think he's half-decent.
U talking horseshit again?

U have no clue about what's required away from home do you?

U still don't understand his role in the team!

All those little nicks and tackles Lucas did all afternoon, the only
guy on the pitch whose switched on virtually the entire game.

He's still not at the level where he left off prior to his injury, way back
ago but he's getting there. If you look you'll see that the consistency (90 minutes)
and mental awareness are there.

Not sure if he fits in Scholari's plans, but I fully expect him to be
busting a gut after Christmas to be in contention for what's a
historic event in his country - in any case I expect him to be busting
a gut because that's the professional he is. Wondering will he stay
beyond next Summer...

But please Rodgers you need to rest Henderson he's so poor it's unbelieveable in the forward direction.
More utter Horseshit, he was playing semi-right back today 'til the switch to 2 at
the back when Sterling came on.

& who was it in the 89th minute steaming forward like it was the 2nd minute
who made Suarez's goal?? Sure the plaudits will go to Sturridge & Suarez but
it was the presence of Henderson occupying 2 defenders which created the hole
for Luis - Hendo's one of the few players out there who actually enjoys wearing
the shirt!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 30, 2013, 02:07:59 AM
Wasnt able to catch todays game. Much needed 3 points especially considering the results over the weekend. If we are to have any chance of putting up a fight for a top 4 place we have to take advantage of the other top sides slipping up.

How was Sakho? I havent been impressed as of yet but obviously its very early days. So far for me hes looked unpredictable and thats the last thing you need from a centre back.
Agree, the result was important!

Sakho seemed fine when on the ball, kept it simple, not flustered and
found a player (there's a certain intelligence to that, given he's new, relatively
young and we're away from home) - not exactly sure off the ball what his role
was in the 3 man defence.

Looking at him he still doesn't seem to fit his body yet, might need to wait 18
months to judge whether he is a league winning/potential captain centre half,
which is what we need - a monster at the back who's more than a monster. Just
not seeing that poise yet which marks a central defender out as special, I'd be
happy enough if he spends the rest of the season displaying all the different
attributes of a proper top 4 central defender and starts bring it all together next
season. What's exciting is he appears to have the potential to be an all rounder/
big presence at the back - early days though!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on September 30, 2013, 06:36:47 AM
U talking horseshit again?

U have no clue about what's required away from home do you?

U still don't understand his role in the team!

All those little nicks and tackles Lucas did all afternoon, the only
guy on the pitch whose switched on virtually the entire game.

He's still not at the level where he left off prior to his injury, way back
ago but he's getting there. If you look you'll see that the consistency (90 minutes)
and mental awareness are there.

Not sure if he fits in Scholari's plans, but I fully expect him to be
busting a gut after Christmas to be in contention for what's a
historic event in his country - in any case I expect him to be busting
a gut because that's the professional he is. Wondering will he stay
beyond next Summer...
More utter Horseshit, he was playing semi-right back today 'til the switch to 2 at
the back when Sterling came on.

& who was it in the 89th minute steaming forward like it was the 2nd minute
who made Suarez's goal?? Sure the plaudits will go to Sturridge & Suarez but
it was the presence of Henderson occupying 2 defenders which created the hole
for Luis - Hendo's one of the few players out there who actually enjoys wearing
the shirt!

Cant be arsed responding to a kid who calls ppl name simply because they don't agree with him. Tragic. Did u even see the game? You usually don't. Seen it twice now and feel even stronger in my opinion.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 30, 2013, 06:24:30 PM
Tragic. Did u even see the game? You usually don't.
I heard MOTD were looking for you once Hansen leaves  :P
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on September 30, 2013, 06:37:13 PM
How was Sakho?

http://www.merseyreds.com/2013/09/30/mamadou-sakho-vs-sunderland-defensively-strong-composed-on-the-ball-brilliant-video/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mamadou-sakho-vs-sunderland-defensively-strong-composed-on-the-ball-brilliant-video&utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on September 30, 2013, 11:09:43 PM
http://www.merseyreds.com/2013/09/30/mamadou-sakho-vs-sunderland-defensively-strong-composed-on-the-ball-brilliant-video/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mamadou-sakho-vs-sunderland-defensively-strong-composed-on-the-ball-brilliant-video&utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

Cheers Ed.

Going by that piece Sakho looked solid. It may be just his style but his passing looks shaky. He looks susceptible to making a mistake when in possession. Only time will tell. There is big hope for him. I suppose what worries me is when a player comes with a big reputation and a relatively big price tag and they havent been playing for their previous team you just worry that there is an underlying reason.

Thats why I'm not a Skrtel fan. He can be excellent but he generally makes potentially goal conceding mistakes every couple of matches. The one season he eradicated them he finished as our player of the season. Hes not the strongest in the air either. Anyway my point is we need a greater level of consistency from Sakho than we have from Skrtel.

All that said I recall Vidic didnt have a great start to his United career but after about 9 month was immense. Hopefully Sakho is more Vidic than Skrtel.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 01, 2013, 12:26:14 AM
Sakho will turn out to be cross between Desailly and Djimi Traore. He'll be fine.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 01, 2013, 12:29:59 AM
But please Rodgers you need to rest Henderson he's so poor it's unbelieveable in the forward direction.

Hendo's being played out of position a lot of the time. I wish we had more players that would at least 'bust a gut' like Hendo does. He's way down our list of worries.

And it's 'Brendan' to you, not 'Rodgers!". The man has us second in the league, give him a break.*  ;D




















*Permanently
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 01, 2013, 12:30:55 AM
I don't know why everybody's making him out to be the next Cantona-Zidane-Messi-Ronaldo in one.

Brilliantly understated, as always.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 01, 2013, 12:33:26 AM
The more I think of it the more I actually believe this "ooh, Lucas is soooo good" comment is just a cool thing to say, not based at all on any hard fact.

Easily remedied. Stop thinking about it.

The French used to say the same things about Deschamps, that you do about Lucas.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on October 01, 2013, 03:10:09 AM
Easily remedied. Stop thinking about it.
I tink he's stuck somewhere 4 seasons ago! - probably went into
shock when hodge lost the gig...

Meanwhile you have to laugh  ;D

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/columnists/alanhansen/10342657/Manchester-United-and-David-Moyes-must-heed-the-warning-of-a-then-dominant-Liverpools-demise.html

What I'm waiting for is Grandpa to have to come out & plead
with the supporters to give Moyes time (I feel another defeat
this week could tip some of their more pampered/deluded
supporters over the edge). Joke club.  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on October 02, 2013, 02:56:11 PM
I tink he's stuck somewhere 4 seasons ago! - probably went into
shock when hodge lost the gig...

Meanwhile you have to laugh  ;D

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/columnists/alanhansen/10342657/Manchester-United-and-David-Moyes-must-heed-the-warning-of-a-then-dominant-Liverpools-demise.html

What I'm waiting for is Grandpa to have to come out & plead
with the supporters to give Moyes time (I feel another defeat
this week could tip some of their more pampered/deluded
supporters over the edge). Joke club.  ;D

Its amazing how things can turn into a crisis overnight. Fergie won the league at a canter last season. Their dip in form has been even greater than anticipated. People talk about ageing players and lack of summer signings but I dont buy that for a second. Theres no doubt Rio and Vidic cant go on forever but its no co-incidence that the minute Fergie goes so does the teams consistency. He gave average squads the belief that they were world beaters and in fairness it worked. Whatever way he managed his teams I genuinely believe he was often the cause for his team to be 20 points plus better off than they should have been and last season was no different.

Whats great to see is United finally have someone mortal in the dugout and as you predicted Ed grandpa was out today saying Moyes needed time.

I still think United and Moyes will get it right sooner rather than later. We just have to ensure that we are winning every time they slip up. Talk of crisis is definitely been peddled by the media and impatient fans but if we could gatecrash the top 4 and keep United out of it in the process then there could be genuine cause for concern for them. Until then unfortunately I still expect to see them surging up the table.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 03, 2013, 03:07:20 PM
Its amazing how things can turn into a crisis overnight. Fergie won the league at a canter last season. Their dip in form has been even greater than anticipated. People talk about ageing players and lack of summer signings but I dont buy that for a second. Theres no doubt Rio and Vidic cant go on forever but its no co-incidence that the minute Fergie goes so does the teams consistency. He gave average squads the belief that they were world beaters and in fairness it worked. Whatever way he managed his teams I genuinely believe he was often the cause for his team to be 20 points plus better off than they should have been and last season was no different.

Whats great to see is United finally have someone mortal in the dugout and as you predicted Ed grandpa was out today saying Moyes needed time.

I still think United and Moyes will get it right sooner rather than later. We just have to ensure that we are winning every time they slip up. Talk of crisis is definitely been peddled by the media and impatient fans but if we could gatecrash the top 4 and keep United out of it in the process then there could be genuine cause for concern for them. Until then unfortunately I still expect to see them surging up the table.

No of those players have worked under Moyes before and it was always going to be interesting to see if he would change his mentality, that he needed at Everton to get their relative success, or whether he would expect the players to change to his method(s) of playing.

We didn't learn from them when they had to replace Busby, hopeful they won't learn from us. What is promising is that not only did they lose the best manager of the last 25 years, but also one of the best football administrators in Gill. We at least kept Peter Robinson for a few years into Moores term as chairman, yet that proved to be insufficient. Hopefully the same will happen to them.

So far, what we thought may happen, (that the top 5/6 teams, with the probable exception of Arsenal, are, for different reasons, wobbling), is happening, and there is a huge opportunity to get amongst them and break into the top four. Whether we can take advantage remains to be seen and we're going to need a Winter window on a par with last January's, rather than a repeat of either Summer window.   
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 03, 2013, 03:49:00 PM
A very good read that echoes my thaughts and sentiments  on the spot bar, perhaps the Henderson bit.

Quote

Six games into the 2012-2013 season, Liverpool sat 14th in the Premier League table on just five points. One year on, and Brendan Rodgers side are now second on 13 points – but many fans feel the football currently being played by the Reds is inferior to the style we saw a year ago.

Gone is the possession football, gone is the slow, patient build-up play and gone are any signs of the pressing game that failed to materialise as we hoped in the first place. Instead, this season’s Liverpool side has so far been one that struggles to hold on to the ball, has no presence of any kind in midfield, but despite that, tends to take away the points.

For a club barren of Champions League football for 5 years and desperate to get back among Europe’s elite, it is, of course, winning that counts. The concern is that results soon start to match performances, and if Liverpool’s football doesn’t improve soon, the points might start to dry up.

The return of the mercurial Luis Suarez – a player who has already proved he can win games on his own – will go some way to allaying those fears, but he can’t solve the fundamental issues in midfield currently stunting the side’s play.

Lucas and Gerrard
So far this season Liverpool have averaged only just over 50% possession: hardly what you’d expect from a team playing possession-based football. At 33, Steven Gerrard is increasingly immobile and Lucas Leiva was never been the quickest of players even before his double injury, meaning the midfield duo often struggles to keep with play, especially when breaking quickly. At times there has been nothing but a huge void where the midfield should be, especially in the second halves of games when both Gerrard and Lucas have run out of steam.

Defensively, Lucas still has has a tendency to be drawn to the ball instead of reading the game and holding a tactical position, and Gerrard has never been known for his tactical discipline. Lucas offers little going forward (when did he last play a delicate through-ball) and while Gerrard still has most of the technical attributes, his legs don’t often get him in a position to contribute to attacks other than from set-pieces

Perhaps the biggest downfall of the pairing is the lack of energy in what is supposed to be the engine-room. Jordan Henderson does a good job of doing their running for them, but this clearly detracts from the attacking threat he poses down the right, and wears him out in the process.

Coutinho the Creator

So far during his Liverpool career Coutinho has been played either on the left where he drifts into the middle but also out of games, or in the hole as a dedicated No 10. Towards the end of last season he performed the latter role to great effect, supplying the nails for Daniel Sturridge to hammer home. The only time we’ve seen Coutinho deployed centrally from the start this season was against Swansea before he was withdrawn because of injury, and the difference his absence made was obvious. Before being clattered by Ashley Williams, the creative Brazilian was dropping deep to collect the ball from Lucas and Gerrard with such regularity that it was almost as if he were playing as a designated ball-carrier.

Liverpool’s centre-backs and central midfielders have frequently struggle to find a passing outlet this season, causing possession to break down, but Coutinho’s main duty against Swansea appeared to be to make sure his teammates always had a simple passing option. Sometimes that option was just to let him take the ball from their toes, but with Coutinho’s sublime passing and dribbling skills, his ability to see and execute a pass others couldn’t or move forward with the ball himself helped us to keep possession and build attacks.

This wasn’t Coutinho playing strictly in the hole behind the strikers; instead he was dropping right back to the halfway line and deeper, and if you look at his time at Liverpool so far, a good deal of his best work – particularly his passing – has come from deeper areas; picking the ball up around the halfway line.

Brendan Rodgers has said himself that Coutinho can play as a central midfielder as well as an attacking midfielder, meaning he could potentially be incorporated into a 1-2 midfield as part of the ‘2’, as opposed to having to play as the ‘1’ in a 2-1. Playing Coutinho in this slightly deeper role – similar to how Iniesta plays for Barcelona – would not only help the team keep possession and increase the creativity in deeper areas, but would also allow Rodgers to revert to playing with one holding player who routinely collects the ball from defence and starts attacking moves.

Allen the Controller 

At the start of last season Joe Allen was arguably Liverpool’s best player, picking up three man of the match awards from journalists on the official site. His deployment as the holding player was a temporary measure while Lucas recovered from injury, with even Rodgers stating that when played slightly further player as the ‘shuttle’ in a midfield 3, there is even more to Allen’s game.

Yet those early performances when Allen fell in-between split centre backs and helped the side build from the back remain his best in a red shirt. Of course, this was during a time when the side as a whole was struggling results wise, but this was down to a dodgy defence and, aside from Suarez, impotent attack, with the Welshman looking like the one player who truly understood the system.

Another of Liverpool’s issue this season has been Mignolet’s distribution, with the Belgian struggling to maintain the high standards set by Pepe Reina. But is this entirely Mignolet’s fault? With Gerrard and Lucas operating as the world’s most static double-pivot, Mignolet hasn’t had a designated player confident with the ball in tight situations coming to collect the ball from him, and the inclusion of the possession-averse Martin Skrtel ahead of him hasn’t helped either.

Brendan Rodgers appears to be the only person opting out of the consensus that Liverpool require a defensive midfielder, but preferring a ‘controller’ type DM to the more physical alternative many fans would like to see, Allen’s inclusion at the back of a midfield triangle, with Coutinho and one other ahead of him would instantly transform Liverpool’s midfield to one far more mobile and comfortable on the ball. But who should that third player be?

From Gerrard to Henderson

With Allen starting things off from deep and Coutinho dropping in and linking midfield to attack, the third player needs to be someone who can bind the midfield together with strong running and a physical presence. Jordan Henderson’s incredible engine and stamina allow him to contribute both going forwards and in defence, and his comparative physicality would compensate for the diminutive frames of Allen and Coutinho. Playing alongside (or just behind) Coutinho, Henderson would compliment the Brazilian’s quick feet and vision with well-timed runs forward, arriving late in the box or bursting beyond the strikers.

If the opposition is in the ascendency, Henderson can drop in beside Allen leaving Coutinho ahead of them. With Coutinho more comfortable left of centre and Henderson naturally suited to the right, the pair should offer good balance horizontally as well as vertically.

Whether Brendan Rodgers is prepared to drop Gerrard for the player many see as his natural replacement remains to be seen. Judging by fans’ reactions whenever it’s suggested that he should, he can perhaps be forgiven for feeling that it just isn’t an option for him politically, if not tactically. Lucas’ ban presents a natural opportunity to try out something new, but with Steven Gerrard seemingly unbreakable these days, it may be a while before he is given a similar opportunity to experiment without the club captain in the line-up.

In large sections of the fan-base the suspicion remains that Gerrard simply isn’t suited to playing in a team true to Rodgers playing philosophy – a philosophy which appears to have been completely disregarded so far this season. If the change is in-part to accommodate a player four months the wrong side of 33, and results start to fall in-line with performances, dropping Gerrard could become a make-or-break decision for Rodgers.

For now, of course, there is no cause for alarm. Liverpool sit just two points behind Arsenal at the top of the table with winnable fixtures coming up and Luis Suarez back in the team. But Steven Gerrard can’t play forever. At some point a Liverpool manager will have to leave him out. Brendan Rodgers should make sure that manager is him and not somebody else.

http://www.thisisanfield.com/2013/10/how-brendan-rodgers-can-repair-liverpools-faltering-midfield/ (http://www.thisisanfield.com/2013/10/how-brendan-rodgers-can-repair-liverpools-faltering-midfield/)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 03, 2013, 04:13:43 PM
(http://images.football.co.uk/245x318/player/joe_allen/121805.jpg)



as



(http://images2.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20130625110056/ttte/images/thumb/2/26/TheFatController2.png/166px-TheFatController2.png)





You can almost see the strings on the top photo.  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on October 03, 2013, 08:41:03 PM
A very good read

Defensively, Lucas still has has a tendency to be drawn to the ball instead of reading the game and holding a tactical position,
B*llshit. In a sentence whoever the author is reveals their ignorance.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on October 05, 2013, 08:12:44 PM
The more we win the quieter this place seems to get. Are there any posters left?

Good win today. We were always expected to win this one comfortably but maybe in previous years this is where we wouldve left two points behind. For me the most impressive thing about the team at the moment is that we have the potential to score from a number of different sources. We can no longer be labelled a one man team. I still dont think we are capable of winning the title yet. I'm hugely impressed by Toure and Id love to see himself and Agger start at the heart of defence but I'm not sure Rodgers knows quiet how to accommodate all of the players in that department without resorting to three centre backs.   

Its a pity the international break halts our momentum once again but on the other hand it probably gives us time to get some injured players back in the fold.

Looking at the table its shaping up to be the closest top 4 contest in the Premier League yet not even to mention who is going to win the league. I still think its Citys or Chelseas to lose but maybe another 5 or 10 games will be the true judge of that.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on October 05, 2013, 09:07:16 PM
The more we win the quieter this place seems to get. Are there any posters left?

Good win today. We were always expected to win this one comfortably but maybe in previous years this is where we wouldve left two points behind.
Nah, I still post, as does Tes and Marx only goes quiet when
we're losing, Dude's about keeping his counsel, we all know
his position, though he may have changed it...

Haven't seen the game yet, but can't argue with the result.
League aint a sprint though...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on October 06, 2013, 04:01:48 AM
I'm hugely impressed by Toure and Id love to see himself and Agger start at the heart of defence but I'm not sure Rodgers knows quiet how to accommodate all of the players in that department without resorting to three centre backs.
In an ideal world, the back two would be Agger and Skrtel, with Sakho & Toure
chomping at the bit. He sidelined Martin in favour of Carra for half of last season,
if he does similarly the first half of this season using Toure, he'd need to justify
that with results and solid defensive displays (if it aint broke!).

Luckily the injuries at the back have contrived to make the current selection choice
easier for him & as you say he may use Johnson slightly further forward and stick
with 3 at the back in the short-term. But then we look a bit unbalanced (overloaded at
the back imo) if Lucas comes back in...

I think he needs to sit down with Skrtel and sort it out. Say to him, I'm putting my faith in
you, now prove me right!

The advantage there is Martin doesn't push for an exit at Christmas (which he could easily unless
there's serious momentum about our challenge), but is kept on his toes & Toure is ready to
jump in and there for the entire campaign as opposed to wearing himself out or getting injured.
Sakho will surely find opportunities as the season wears on and just needs to be reassured that
his day will come and to pick up as much as he can in the meantime and be ready when called
upon.

I'd keep in simple with:

Johnson, Skrtel Agger, Enrique
                    Lucas

Meantime, thought Hendo did his chances of inclusion in the World Cup squad no harm
today. No doubt the watching England manager (em, Roy f**king Hodgson) will have
noted his energy and growing authority today - even if it was at home to Palace. Needs
to stick a picture of Graham Souness up in his locker and grow a moustache!

What I liked about today was the two big athletic but technical 23 year-olds in the team
(Hendo & Sakho), need at least another two of them to be a credible force in the league.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on October 06, 2013, 08:53:18 PM
In an ideal world, the back two would be Agger and Skrtel, with Sakho & Toure
chomping at the bit. He sidelined Martin in favour of Carra for half of last season,
if he does similarly the first half of this season using Toure, he'd need to justify
that with results and solid defensive displays (if it aint broke!).

Luckily the injuries at the back have contrived to make the current selection choice
easier for him & as you say he may use Johnson slightly further forward and stick
with 3 at the back in the short-term. But then we look a bit unbalanced (overloaded at
the back imo) if Lucas comes back in...

I think he needs to sit down with Skrtel and sort it out. Say to him, I'm putting my faith in
you, now prove me right!

The advantage there is Martin doesn't push for an exit at Christmas (which he could easily unless
there's serious momentum about our challenge), but is kept on his toes & Toure is ready to
jump in and there for the entire campaign as opposed to wearing himself out or getting injured.
Sakho will surely find opportunities as the season wears on and just needs to be reassured that
his day will come and to pick up as much as he can in the meantime and be ready when called
upon.

I'd keep in simple with:

Johnson, Skrtel Agger, Enrique
                    Lucas

Meantime, thought Hendo did his chances of inclusion in the World Cup squad no harm
today. No doubt the watching England manager (em, Roy f**king Hodgson) will have
noted his energy and growing authority today - even if it was at home to Palace. Needs
to stick a picture of Graham Souness up in his locker and grow a moustache!

What I liked about today was the two big athletic but technical 23 year-olds in the team
(Hendo & Sakho), need at least another two of them to be a credible force in the league.



Id agree with that back five with the exception of Skrtel. Hes capable of putting in great displays but I find him to be often poor at defending set pieces and error prone. Toure looks calmness personified and long may Man City keep spending money if they are going to let players like him walk away on a free. Hendersons a bit of a mystery. Hes got a great engine but technically he can be lacking. But it may not be inconceivable that he could warrant starting in front of Gerrard going forward. I think Stevies place in the team is a given but I'm not sure how much longer that can be guaranteed.

Another good weekend with Arsenal and Spurs dropping points. I cant see any team going unbeaten from here on out so hopefully that bodes well for our top 4 chances.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 06, 2013, 09:43:31 PM
I would say it's absolutely vital we keep Toure in the side if we're to nurture any hopes of finishing in the top 4. He adds energy, experience, quality and a winning mentality none of the other CB's can provide. Agger I don't understand why he's considered a no-brainer considering his proness to error.

I expect Rodgers to return to a 4 men defence with the return of Johnson. This 3-5-2 formation may work a game or couple but will prove costly in the long run as there's extremly few sides in the modern game having a good enough squad to play it.

The return of Johnson and Coutinho is very timely as we need to up our game and we need to do it now. Thus far we can't complain about the return we've had and we can't expect to keep picking up points at this performance level. So there's two directins this season can turn out: Either it collapse starting at St. James in a fortnigt or we step up 2 gears and then I would agree with Rodgers that only the sky is the limit.

Finally, cred where it's due. Well done Henderson on your best game of the season - by far that is. Maybe there's something to the argument yer being played out of position. Moses as no. 10? Tend to disagree Rodgers.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 06, 2013, 10:45:56 PM
Set piece achilles strikes again, but a comfortable first half display saw us over the line.

What's wrong with our squad? Are they all on half pay or something? Do they forget about the second half? Maybe we ought to turn the heating off for half time then they'd have too run round getting warm again in the second half.

I'm going to have to take up the guitar and write 'the second half blues' so it can be played ad nauseam all half time.

I'm certainly glad, at least at this stage, that we can hand Moses back at the end of the season.

Hendo played well again, and at least he turned up for the second half. There's a few more senior players would do well to follow his example.

Toure was class again and I hope he can teach Sakho which feet to put his boots on. There's a fine player inside though trying to get out. I just wish he would hurry up and do so.

And where's Allen? Golden boy to Golden Shower in less than 12 months. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 06, 2013, 11:22:15 PM
Last season it took us 13 games and until Tues 27th November to reach the points tally we have at the moment. It feels great to see us in the podium positions and only goal difference, not even a single point is stopping us from being top, but as Ed wisely points out, it's a marathon slog of 38 games, not a quick dash of 7.
We haven't and can't win anything with our current points total and it's that knowledge that needs to keep us grounded and hungry for more, much more.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 07, 2013, 12:16:59 AM
Set piece achilles strikes again, but a comfortable first half display saw us over the line.

What's wrong with our squad? Are they all on half pay or something? Do they forget about the second half? Maybe we ought to turn the heating off for half time then they'd have too run round getting warm again in the second half.

I'm going to have to take up the guitar and write 'the second half blues' so it can be played ad nauseam all half time.

I'm certainly glad, at least at this stage, that we can hand Moses back at the end of the season.

Hendo played well again, and at least he turned up for the second half. There's a few more senior players would do well to follow his example.

Toure was class again and I hope he can teach Sakho which feet to put his boots on. There's a fine player inside though trying to get out. I just wish he would hurry up and do so.

And where's Allen? Golden boy to Golden Shower in less than 12 months.

Just this once I'm prepared to accept taking the foot off the pedal given the half-time score. Toure was indeed classy, but then again I never saw him as back up. After all he's the only PL Winner in the squad. You echo my sentiments spot on re Sakho. Too soon for Sterling. There's no two ways about it - he had a stinker. Suso I hear had another brilliant assist in La Liga.  Also thought young Luis Alberto did well off the bench.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 09, 2013, 11:10:12 PM
Sterling may have pace and some level of ability but it won't be fashioned into a useful product until he improves his decision making and becomes much more tactically aware. He looks like a player who needs to go out loan and play regular first team football. At this stage he isn't at the level we need him to be at.

Both Suso and Alberto are far more tactically aware, as a lot of Spanish youngsters tend to be, and if possible, Alberto should be getting pitch time ahead of Sterling at the moment.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on October 09, 2013, 11:47:11 PM
Sterling may have pace and some level of ability but it won't be fashioned into a useful product until he improves his decision making and becomes much more tactically aware. He looks like a player who needs to go out loan and play regular first team football. At this stage he isn't at the level we need him to be at.

Both Suso and Alberto are far more tactically aware, as a lot of Spanish youngsters tend to be, and if possible, Alberto should be getting pitch time ahead of Sterling at the moment.

Agreed Tes. I think he needs to mature a bit on top of all of that. Trouble has a habit of finding him and I get the impression thats largely his own doing. A club will only take so much crap. The reason Suarez is still here is because his undeniable talent. Sterling is still just potential and until he starts fulfilling that talent his future at the club is never certain. As you say a season on loan could be exactly what he needs.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on October 09, 2013, 11:54:35 PM
In fact Suso could go from being further down the pecking order than Sterling at the club to jumping ahead of him if this seasons loan at Almera goes okay. I cant see Sterling getting too many minutes so Suso could come back closer to being a first team regular. I dont see it happening because our squad isnt good enough but it may be worth our while getting Sterling out in loan in January.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 10, 2013, 11:26:39 AM
In fact Suso could go from being further down the pecking order than Sterling at the club to jumping ahead of him if this seasons loan at Almera goes okay. I cant see Sterling getting too many minutes so Suso could come back closer to being a first team regular. I dont see it happening because our squad isnt good enough but it may be worth our while getting Sterling out in loan in January.

Juan, I was thinking along those lines as well. I also agree with both of you Sterling may not be the new Barnes after all. Ibe then, he's got it IMHO. Physically he's better equipped and he looks a tad more competent in other aspects of the games than Sterling the little I've seen.

As for Suso, the reports I hear suggests he's something of an impact player for Almera but I might have gotten that wrong. I would say the center of the park is the main problem and, the way I see it, the main reason we perform less well in the 2nd half of games. If I were pick one formation it would look something like this.


----------------------------Mignolet-------------------------------

Johnson---------Toure-----------Sakho/Agger------Enrique

--------------------------Allen/Lucas-----------------------------

------------Henderson--------------Gerrard--------------------

-------------------------Coutinho---------------------------------

------------Sturridge---------------Suarez----------------------

I think this would help us crowd the center of the park and also bring out the best, offensively, of Johnson and Enrique. I think this 3-5-2 formation may be a great short-term solution but few teams in the history of this game have shown able to play it successfully over an extended period of time.

And that's right, I haven't given up on Allen. Lucas on the other hand...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on October 10, 2013, 03:31:21 PM
Agreed Martin I havent given up on Allen either. There must be huge question marks though hanging over his future at the club considering hes played so little. He has been a major disappointment to date. The centre of our midfield is easily now the weakest position in the team but Allen doesnt seem to be able to make any kind of  impression. I know hes been out injured but to be honest I wouldnt have even noticed had there not been pre match updates on the web that reminded me.

I havent given up on Lucas either. He hasnt come back the same player since injuring himself in that game at Stamford Bridge but up to that point he had proven the level he could reach and maintain so Ive hope he can get back there.

Its a little hypocritical of me really because I dont necessarily afford Skrtel the same reasoning. If Zenith were to come in with a 16 million bid in January thats being reported I would snap their hands off and take it.

We seem to have been linked with a move for Athleticos young Spanish midfielder Koke. I cant see the player wanting a move with Athletico playing as they are. One thing that is for sure at least Rodgers scouting network must be working because the players we tried to get and missed out on Costa and the Armenian lad seem to be doing well for their respective clubs.   

As for Sterling I still have high hopes for him but I think he has a lot of work to do to fulfill the potential he showed in recent years.

The team you have chosen there is definitely very strong. Im an Agger fan so I would have him automatically starting beside Toure. Sakho still has to earn his start but I would certainly prefer a back 4 that includes only two centre backs.

Looking forward to the positions that hypothetically need to be filled in the next few transfer windows. Central midfield is priority. I still think Suarez will go regardless of Champions league. It might be Bayern, Barca or Real Madrid but once one of the super clubs come in for him again I think he could be off. So hes someone we will have to replace. Costas price will have sky rocketed considering hes already got 10 league goals so we will probably have to look elsewhere. Im not sure whether we have adequate cover at left and right back yet. Time will tell. And whether we need to strengthen out wide or behind the forwards may depend on how Suso Ibe and Sterling develop in the next couple of seasons.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on October 10, 2013, 07:07:54 PM
Agreed Martin I havent given up on Allen either. There must be huge question marks though hanging over his future at the club considering hes played so little. He has been a major disappointment to date. The centre of our midfield is easily now the weakest position in the team but Allen doesnt seem to be able to make any kind of  impression. I know hes been out injured but to be honest I wouldnt have even noticed had there not been pre match updates on the web that reminded me.
Joe Allen. It seemed to go wrong for him last season when
given deep defensive midfield duties. Lad became a single
point of failure, easily targetted by the opposition & overrun.

Not sure whether he had the shoulder injury at that time and
also the Rodgers system was in it's infancy, with the passing
concentrated deep in our own half - no team in their right mind
wants to pass the ball around in their own half!

Anyway it became obvious to some of us on here that Henderson was
the better option and somewhat belatedly the manager made the
switch, though my recollection is that the shoulder injury was cited as
the reason he lost his place.

Matters not, whilst Allen has been out Henderson has cemented his place
in the first 11 - amongst other things demonstrating flexibility to the point
where he was able to assume large parts of the Lucas role the other day -
albeit with a back 3 and at home to Palace.

As things stand Henderson is virtually undroppable in a midfield comprising
Lucas and Gerrard - both lacking natural athleticism (not saying Stevie doesn't
run around, just his contribution in that area is not sustained or effective enough
to be missed if he was out) . I see an opening for Allen as a replacement for
Gerrard around the 70 minute mark, in games where retention of possession
becomes key and breakneck 70 yard passes are less the order of the day.

It is somewhat unfortunate for him the way things have worked out, wouldn't
be surprised if his confidence has taken a bit of a knock. I don't see an automatic
starting role for him at the moment (I never did), he'll need to make the most of what
opportunities come his way now (work on his goal-scoring, in particular - not his strongest
suit) and show a lot of character.  Seems a decent guy, who's been a bit unlucky, so
I hope he at least gets the opportunity to show us what he can do.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 10, 2013, 09:30:49 PM
Allen's out with hamstring problems, partly I suspect as a result of being out for a period with that shoulder injury, having played on too long with it.

Lucas' problem is two severe injuries, the second coming far too soon after returning from the first, having not reached anywhere near the allround fitness and conditioning required. That has meant his body has not be able to deal with the second injury, which in turn means it took even more from him than it ordinarily would.
I can actually see him having a so-so season whilst all the underlying indicators gradually get back to the levels required, so we could easily be looking to next season before he stands a chance of getting back to pre-injury form.

The midfield really is the outstanding weakness in the team. The manager has to decide what formation(s) he wishes to use so he knows how each part of the team needs to function within any given formation and adopted style. Then he needs to figure out how the midfield fits in, what is therefore required from the midfield, what is required from each individual midfielder and do we even have the required midfield components at the club.
Pace is the obvious characteristic missing from the midfield, but then goals and physical presence are also in low supply. Creativity could be better and we have to find a way of better blending defence into midfield, and midfield into the forward line than we do at the moment.

The next two midfield signings are going to be the most crucial in the manager's career thus far. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 11, 2013, 11:29:03 AM
All great posts. I even agree wholeheartedly with Ed for a change! ;D

I would agree Tes that the next two midfield signings are the most important in that if he gets them wrong it may undo all the good work and progress made thus far.

As I said I agree Ed with your sentiments, still the questin in the back of my head repeat itself: "He was one of the better CM's for Swansea, did he lose all that when signing for us? Why?".

Juan, I used to be very pro-Agger. IMHO, he's struggled a lot over the last 12 months often costing us points or nearly so. Even this season he's very errorprone. Sakho too has made a few mistakes but I would say they originate from the early-days syndrome rather than lack of quality. I really think this team is so centered around Agger and Gerrard (Suarez of course) but I do question whether they're helping us move forward or stand in the way of progress. Gerrard of late deffo looks the latter option.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on October 11, 2013, 06:25:34 PM
Whether the hierarchy is reading our posts...but the placement of kenny, robbie, stevie mac and rob jones around the place is a good thing...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 11, 2013, 10:02:15 PM
I really think this team is so centered around Agger and Gerrard (Suarez of course) but I do question whether they're helping us move forward or stand in the way of progress. Gerrard of late deffo looks the latter option.

Therein lies the secret, and it must be a secret  ;D as very few managers truly pull it off, of true man management. 

Taggart understood that nobody could be bigger than him. Look at the way Sir Bob dispatch Emlyn Hughes and and Tommy Smith to Wolves ans Swansea respectively. Would Carra and Gerrard last as long under Taggart or Paisley?

I think Agger's become complacent. Not deliberately, but comfortable all the same having no competition for too long. Whether he can raise his game again, I guess we'll find out over the season.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on October 13, 2013, 05:23:18 PM
As things stand Henderson is virtually undroppable in a midfield comprising
Lucas and Gerrard - both lacking natural athleticism (not saying Stevie doesn't
run around, just his contribution in that area is not sustained or effective enough
to be missed if he was out) . I see an opening for Allen as a replacement for
Gerrard around the 70 minute mark, in games where retention of possession
becomes key and breakneck 70 yard passes are less the order of the day.

It is somewhat unfortunate for him the way things have worked out, wouldn't
be surprised if his confidence has taken a bit of a knock. I don't see an automatic
starting role for him at the moment (I never did), he'll need to make the most of what
opportunities come his way now (work on his goal-scoring, in particular - not his strongest
suit) and show a lot of character.  Seems a decent guy, who's been a bit unlucky, so
I hope he at least gets the opportunity to show us what he can do.

Henderson is as you say undropable at the moment but Id still be wary of how consistent he can be. I dont doubt his engine but I do question his mentality and technical ability. Like you though I believe he warrants a place in the centre of our midfield. At the moment he would be the first name down on the teamsheet for that position.

Like you I also would like to see Allen get a chance to prove himself before hes considered surplus to requirements. Not many players have starts like hes had and survive at a club like this but I do hope he can buck the trend and prove he was worth the 15 million.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on October 13, 2013, 05:25:42 PM
Whether the hierarchy is reading our posts...but the placement of kenny, robbie, stevie mac and rob jones around the place is a good thing...

Agreed Bart. I often wonder why very few players from era's gone by get brought in to the club in certain capacities. Good to see the names you mentioned back.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 17, 2013, 12:58:14 AM
Both McManaman and Fowler have 'settled down' from the laddish characters they were as players. Rob Jones is an interesting one. He and his wife were running a daycare nursery at one time. It's to be hoped he can pass on some of the undoubted defensive qualities that he had.
It was such a shame his career was blighted so heavily and then cut short by injury, as he would have been a terrific full back. As strong defensively as going forward and vice versa. Gary Neville wouldn't have had as many England caps early on as he did either.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on October 17, 2013, 10:42:39 PM
All great posts. I even agree wholeheartedly with Ed for a change! ;D
Jesus wept! Blue Moon ;D

As I said I agree Ed with your sentiments, still the questin in the back of my head repeat itself: "He was one of the better CM's for Swansea, did he lose all that when signing for us? Why?".
I'm not overly fussed about it, it's a question of whether he can make it
as first 11, becomes a quality, reliable squad player (somewhat expensive
for 15 million quid) or moves on. Wenger showed patience with Ramsay and
seems to be getting some reward for it. Given the start he's had with us it's
probably best to keep the pressure off him and give him some space to get
back on track. I think it's important that he gets the opportunity (on merit) to
show us what he can do, that we're a bit patient there.

To answer your question, I think what we saw at Swansea was a player
who'd quietly, under the radar, been allowed to develop (grow up with) an
evolving system which had reached a certain point of maturity - his comfort
zone. The switch to the big time (pressure/expectation) and the fact that he
was now playing with a group of players learning the system probably threw
him a bit and the injury to his shoulder hardly helped. It may be the case that
further down the line when more of the pieces are in place that there is a more
natural role for him in the team. I'd be waiting for him to be consistently coming
off the bench & making a difference to games (as opposed to making up the
numbers) before thinking of him in terms of first 11 though.

Anyway, I was delighted to see Lucas Leiva donning the yellow shirt of Brazil again
(really need him involved at international level):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjFxO0FqcHo&feature=player_embedded
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 18, 2013, 01:53:04 PM
Jesus wept! Blue Moon ;D
I'm not overly fussed about it, it's a question of whether he can make it
as first 11, becomes a quality, reliable squad player (somewhat expensive
for 15 million quid) or moves on. Wenger showed patience with Ramsay and
seems to be getting some reward for it. Given the start he's had with us it's
probably best to keep the pressure off him and give him some space to get
back on track. I think it's important that he gets the opportunity (on merit) to
show us what he can do, that we're a bit patient there.

To answer your question, I think what we saw at Swansea was a player
who'd quietly, under the radar, been allowed to develop (grow up with) an
evolving system which had reached a certain point of maturity - his comfort
zone. The switch to the big time (pressure/expectation) and the fact that he
was now playing with a group of players learning the system probably threw
him a bit and the injury to his shoulder hardly helped. It may be the case that
further down the line when more of the pieces are in place that there is a more
natural role for him in the team. I'd be waiting for him to be consistently coming
off the bench & making a difference to games (as opposed to making up the
numbers) before thinking of him in terms of first 11 though.

Anyway, I was delighted to see Lucas Leiva donning the yellow shirt of Brazil again
(really need him involved at international level):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjFxO0FqcHo&feature=player_embedded

Ramsey suffered big time with injuries which kept him of the reckoning, though in the long term I think it's done him a favour as he's now older and more mature, more able to cope with the pressures of being at a big club, and he's probably been forgotten about or written off by half the fanbase, so anything he produces is a bonus.

Excellent points about Allen's Swansea career. Some players are just a good fit for certain clubs. I hope he doesn't prove to be one of them.
It's hard to know exactly what sort of player he is and whether or how he would fit in to the midfield that Rodgers surely has plans for. I can't see that the way the midfield is at the moment is how Rogers wants it be. At least I'd hope not.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on October 18, 2013, 03:51:22 PM
It's hard to know exactly what sort of player he is and whether or how he would fit in to the midfield that Rodgers surely has plans for. I can't see that the way the midfield is at the moment is how Rogers wants it be. At least I'd hope not.
My presumption is that a young, technical, physical, possession oriented midfield is
the aim.

                Lucas

Henderson          Allen

But then where does Coutinho fit in, I mean I could switch
that round to

Henderson       Lucas

             Coutinho

Obviously I've left Gerrard out to have a look. I agree totally with you
Tes on the difficulty of nailing down the single attribute which justifies
Allen's claim on a first 11 spot. It's easy with Lucas, he destroys the play
or Henderson, he has the energy. It seems and I don't mean to do him
down that Allen can pick a pass and retain possession. Thing is both
Lucas & Henderson can also do that and they are both more physical
than Allen.

Hence I don't see him as starting 11 in the short term and would think that he'd
have to develop something extra e.g. neither Henderson or Lucas are great at
scoring goals, but neither is Allen. I expect Henderson to be working on that side of
his game this season, so I think Allen is up against it but competition is healthy.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on October 18, 2013, 05:51:20 PM

Given the start he's had with us it's
probably best to keep the pressure off him and give him some space to get
back on track. I think it's important that he gets the opportunity (on merit) to
show us what he can do, that we're a bit patient there.

To answer your question, I think what we saw at Swansea was a player
who'd quietly, under the radar, been allowed to develop (grow up with) an
evolving system which had reached a certain point of maturity - his comfort
zone. The switch to the big time (pressure/expectation) and the fact that he
was now playing with a group of players learning the system probably threw
him a bit and the injury to his shoulder hardly helped. It may be the case that
further down the line when more of the pieces are in place that there is a more
natural role for him in the team. I'd be waiting for him to be consistently coming
off the bench & making a difference to games (as opposed to making up the
numbers) before thinking of him in terms of first 11 though.

I think all of that's fair in the case of Allen. I suspect Rodgers hasnt written him off just yet. I'm not sure he will be afforded a gentle reintegration into the first team. I dont see him starting any games but thats just because hes down the pecking order but if Rodgers feels hes fit enough I think he will be thrown straight back in when necessary. Hes definitely better than what we've seen so far and I hope he isn't out of his depth. The fact that he was one of Rodgers key players at Swansea I think he will be afforded time. But by time I mean probably until the end of the season. If he hasnt shown at least some promise by then he could very well be shown the door.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on October 18, 2013, 06:06:43 PM

It's hard to know exactly what sort of player he is and whether or how he would fit in to the midfield that Rodgers surely has plans for. I can't see that the way the midfield is at the moment is how Rogers wants it be. At least I'd hope not.

I suppose we just havent seen enough of him and what we have seen didnt live up to what had been expected. Whatever the reasons behind his poor form to date have to be put to one side and he can be afforded a clean slate. As I said in my previous post though I dont think he will get as long to prove himself this time around. If by the summer its the same story and we still havent been convinced I think then Rodgers will sell. Whatever anybody thinks of Rodgers they have to admit he isn't afraid to admit he made a mistake with a player. He has shipped Borini out pretty quickly and and anybody not consistently performing will probably suffer the same fate. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on October 18, 2013, 06:22:54 PM
My presumption is that a young, technical, physical, possession oriented midfield is
the aim.

                Lucas

Henderson          Allen

But then where does Coutinho fit in, I mean I could switch
that round to

Henderson       Lucas

             Coutinho

Obviously I've left Gerrard out to have a look. I agree totally with you
Tes on the difficulty of nailing down the single attribute which justifies
Allen's claim on a first 11 spot. It's easy with Lucas, he destroys the play
or Henderson, he has the energy. It seems and I don't mean to do him
down that Allen can pick a pass and retain possession. Thing is both
Lucas & Henderson can also do that and they are both more physical
than Allen.

Hence I don't see him as starting 11 in the short term and would think that he'd
have to develop something extra e.g. neither Henderson or Lucas are great at
scoring goals, but neither is Allen. I expect Henderson to be working on that side of
his game this season, so I think Allen is up against it but competition is healthy.

Although Allen isnt going to be a starter hes probably lucky hes vying for the one position that nobody is excelling in at the moment. If he stands any chance of getting game time its most likely going to happen in the centre of midfield. He has been mooted as a potential number 10 but I'm not sure he has the attributes for that position. At Swansea he was known for retaining possession but from what I have seen from his early days at the club just because he can retain possession doesnt necessarily mean he has an eye for a pass. I'm not saying he doesnt but he has yet to prove he does. Its one thing increasing your passing percentages by passing sideways and backwards which I found Allen seemed to do alot early on for us but its another thing to split defences which I havent witnessed yet.

As I was alluding to the centre of the park should be up for grabs. Gerrard is getting all of the plaudits for England at the moment but hes been miles off the pace for us so far this season. IF he continues as is he cant be guaranteed a first 11 spot anymore because we are being over run in midfield. Thats not to say his form wont improve. Lucas in my opinion has been better than Gerrard this season but only just. He needs to up his level too or he also cant be guaranteed a first team place. Henderson has being playing well, out of position. I have problems with his consistency and technical ability. I think he still needs to prove both. Saying that hes one of the most improved performers so far this season and realistically he should be the first name on the team sheet for the centre of the park right now when hes not needed elsewhere. So if Allen can come back fighting theres no reason he cant figure this season. Hes lucky hes not a centre back or forward because he'd probably be with Borini at Sunderland by now if he were.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 19, 2013, 12:02:56 PM
Team vs. Newcastle:

-------------------Mignolet----------------------

-------------Toure---Skrtel---Sakho-----------

Johnson----Henderson----Gerrard--Cissokho
 
---------------------Moses---------------------

------------Suarez-------- Sturridge-----------

Lucas and Enrique fail to make the bench for different reasons.

God team I say.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on October 19, 2013, 01:15:50 PM
Let's see if we've got the mental toughness now...good goal from Cabaye...but wtf was mignolet doing? The Newcastle defence are a joke, we should be putting these chances in...we look half asleep as well...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on October 19, 2013, 01:34:06 PM
Thank gawd for Suarez...deffo penalty and sending off...good pen by gerrard...hopefully we can wake up in the 2nd half and really go for the jugular...newcastle will get more and more tired...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 19, 2013, 01:48:14 PM
Very good shot from Cabayé to be honest. Can't fault Mignolet for that.

Other than that a very disappointing first half. We don't look up for it at all. No urgency, no passion. We need to step up a gear or three in the second half if we have any hope of bringing home 3 points.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 19, 2013, 02:54:17 PM
Bitterly disappointed with the result and the performance. Rodgers needs to reconsider the 3-5-2 formation ASAP. It just isn't working or maybe we just miss Coutinho that much.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 19, 2013, 11:44:57 PM
I think there's two very minor positives we can take from the game - firstly we weren't the victims of a 10 man smash 'n' grab, and it happens, and secondly, we scored a goal in the second half of the game, which definitely counts as a collector's item. The rest was almost forgettable before it happened.

It's impossible to tell yet if it was two points lost or one gained. We'll only know that much nearer the end of the season.

Whilst we defend so sloppily, we'll always make it hard for ourselves.

Moses is certainly no number 10 but there's little if no alternative at the moment.

Midfield has to be a priority in January. Just one, clearly defined midfielder, be it a genuine playmaker, goalscoring midfielder or even a strong, pacy enforcer would make a definite difference. At the moment we have much of muchness and nothing of anything. I think 'bland' is a word that sums up our midfield.

Imagine this team with Alonso and Masch where we have Lucas and Gerrard, and Gerrard where Moses lines up. I still think we missed a trick not getting Flamini or even Barry on loan.

Gerrard neither looks convincing or convinced about playing his current role and whilst he's been a great player for the team, he's never been a great team player.

West Brom has to prove to be a cause for salvation if we're to keep the wheels on this season's wagon, otherwise we could start to see a slow decline from any promise the early season may have hinted at.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 20, 2013, 10:11:07 AM
Well said Tes. I know it may not be kosher bto say this, but I genuinely believe as long as Lucas and Henderson are, not only regular starters, but also integral cogs in our squad 4th may be behind us. We sure must strengthen this part of the squad.

At the same time I believe the 3-5-2 formation is a major problem for us. We started the season with a more 4-3-3 or 4-4-1-1 like formation and our ability to dominate the game was evident against Stoke, Villa and Swansea (at least first half in the latter two).  After Coutinho's injury Rodgers went for the current 3-5-2 and we really struggled in midfield against all of Sunderland, Crystal Palace and Newcastle. Gone is the high pressure game, gone is the positional play in midfield and attacking areas, gone is the trademark passing game over the last 15 months. I don't know but I have the feeling Rodgers always wanted to play 3-5-2 and just waited for the right time to implement it. I hope I am wrong but if I'm not this will end badly because he doesn't have the material to play that formation nor is it suitable to the PL.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on October 20, 2013, 10:47:34 AM
Well said Tes. I know it may not be kosher bto say this, but I genuinely believe as long as Lucas and Henderson are, not only regular starters, but also integral cogs in our squad 4th may be behind us. We sure must strengthen this part of the squad.

At the same time I believe the 3-5-2 formation is a major problem for us. We started the season with a more 4-3-3 or 4-4-1-1 like formation and our ability to dominate the game was evident against Stoke, Villa and Swansea (at least first half in the latter two).  After Coutinho's injury Rodgers went for the current 3-5-2 and we really struggled in midfield against all of Sunderland, Crystal Palace and Newcastle. Gone is the high pressure game, gone is the positional play in midfield and attacking areas, gone is the trademark passing game over the last 15 months. I don't know but I have the feeling Rodgers always wanted to play 3-5-2 and just waited for the right time to implement it. I hope I am wrong but if I'm not this will end badly because he doesn't have the material to play that formation nor is it suitable to the PL.

Not sure why you have such a downer on Lucas, Martin, when it was glaringly obvious we missed him against Newcastle. (Congrats btw to the Leiva family on the new born one).
One of the major problems in our midfield is Gerrard, as he ain't no good in that position. He wasn't any good 2 years ago let alone when he's slowing down now. He's been a glorious player for us but he should be played to his strengths and not to what he thinks is his strengths..Benitez could see the difference and played him accordingly, other managers...not so much.
He should be playing behind the strikers...which would mean he has no more responsibility as midfield general...cos he simply can't do it...
As Rodgers wants to attack then he needs Coutinho...cos we're not the same without him...so he's a given...
Then add Lucas (sorry if he can play for Brazil he must be doing something right)...and another defensive midfielder general type..to cover....Wanyama of Celtic/Southhampton would be the ideal type to cover the flair and indiscipline of coutinho and gerrard...
If we got a similar Viera/Wanyama type...then his discipline and playing for the team rather than personal glory combined with Lucas could make the serious difference to this wayward team we have at the moment...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on October 20, 2013, 03:30:39 PM
Midfield has to be a priority in January. Just one, clearly defined midfielder, be it a genuine playmaker, goalscoring midfielder or even a strong, pacy enforcer would make a definite difference. At the moment we have much of muchness and nothing of anything. I think 'bland' is a word that sums up our midfield.
I'd agree wholeheartedly there Tes - workmanlike would be my description, no ambition to
get on the ball and make it happen.

One of the major problems in our midfield is Gerrard
Again, that's the weak point for me too.

This f**kin 3 at the back nonsense has to stop. It just confuses the issue. It's this
new coach b*llshit, the modern game, attacking fullbacks. A team needs defensive
capability full stop, a structure, clearly defined roles, solidity, partnerships & understanding,
consistency, the platform on which everything else is built.

I wanna see two centre-backs, a defensive midfielder and two full-backs who can defend first
& foremost & if they're going forward, they're making significant contributions. Call me old-
fashioned but that's the rhythm of things I understand. Rodgers is all about fluidity, loosely
defined roles (is he an attacker/defender?), difficult to watch and the gaps will always appear -
It's not about trying to be clever and modern (formation w*nk), it's about getting 3 points against
10 men and not labouring to create a decent chance with this advantage!

The weird sh*t about the Newxastle game was the sterility in midfield, because of the 3 centre
halves & two attacking full backs structure, there's no adventure in midfield, a sterile entity, two
guys doing the exact same thing.

I understand Lucas and Henderson in midfield, it's the third man that's the key.

Dude said it on here years ago Gerrard is our Bryan Robson!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 20, 2013, 07:29:15 PM
Not sure why you have such a downer on Lucas, Martin, when it was glaringly obvious we missed him against Newcastle. (Congrats btw to the Leiva family on the new born one).

I don't know if I'm that harsh on Lucas. It isn't my intention anyroad. I genuinely appreciate his ability to break up opponents play and his positional awareness. Too bad he only show that when the team performs well. My main gripe with Lucas is, without one exception, he never took a step forward and offered leadership when the team cried out for it. For 4-5 years he's been given so many chances to grow and develop into the enforcer he needs to be if we are to develop with him in the team and he failed massively. I don't know if he's complacent knowing full well he'll be played regardless of the level of his performance. I know he's many fans favorite but I've never come around to understand as to why that is. I would much rather we could find a defensive midfielder in the Batty-Keane-Masch mould and keep Lucas as back up.

I'd also agre with what's being said about Gerrard. Arguably the best player in the history of this club but time really have catched up with him. Yesterday he needlessly gave away possession on at least 6 occasions. I really can see the wheels coming off sooner rather than later unless Rodgers' sort out our central midfield. Maybe he should start by going back to a formation the players are familiar and feel comfortable with?

Rant over.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 25, 2013, 09:21:05 PM
Martin, did you ever see Lucas play for Gremio?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 25, 2013, 10:23:09 PM
I think the 3 man central defensive setup has been a way to play both Skrtel and Sakho, whilst being unable to leave Toure out for obvious reasons.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on October 25, 2013, 11:20:40 PM
I think the 3 man central defensive setup has been a way to play both Skrtel and Sakho, whilst being unable to leave Toure out for obvious reasons.
Not forgetting Lucas's recent absences.

Was looking at Arsenal's (we play them soon)  midfield/forward lineup
the other day. Just struck me that it was much more coherent, balanced
than ours.

Still when the coot gets back we have:


                                                                Skrtel/Agger (Combo)
Kelly (Direct/Solid)                                                                                                 X   
                                         Henderson (Energy)    Lucas (Defensive)

                                                           Coutinho (Magician)

                                          ?                                             Suarez (Mayhem)
                                                         Sturridge (Goals)

Think Lucas & Henderson cover the flanks well if it breaks down with the full backs
& would seem difficult to me to drive through them in the centre.

I drag Coutinho back from the 10 position to the midfield because we have
no one there who can beat a man with a trick.

I bring Suarez back a bit too leaving Sturridge up front.

Haven't seen enough of Alberto to know if he'd fit where the ? is. Who
does the pressing (first line of defence) up front these days?

Stevie & Allen can slot in as subs.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 26, 2013, 09:54:52 AM
Martin, did you ever see Lucas play for Gremio?

No I didn't. Anyroad, that's in the past and the fact remain Lucas has failed to establish himself at a level that would help our cause. I'm not saying he's no good, just that he doesn't offer what the team need to seriously fight it out for 4th. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 26, 2013, 10:39:52 AM
Not forgetting Lucas's recent absences.

Was looking at Arsenal's (we play them soon)  midfield/forward lineup
the other day. Just struck me that it was much more coherent, balanced
than ours.

Still when the coot gets back we have:


                                                                Skrtel/Agger (Combo)
Kelly (Direct/Solid)                                                                                                 X   
                                         Henderson (Energy)    Lucas (Defensive)

                                                           Coutinho (Magician)

                                          ?                                             Suarez (Mayhem)
                                                         Sturridge (Goals)

Think Lucas & Henderson cover the flanks well if it breaks down with the full backs
& would seem difficult to me to drive through them in the centre.

I drag Coutinho back from the 10 position to the midfield because we have
no one there who can beat a man with a trick.

I bring Suarez back a bit too leaving Sturridge up front.

Haven't seen enough of Alberto to know if he'd fit where the ? is. Who
does the pressing (first line of defence) up front these days?

Stevie & Allen can slot in as subs.

Very interesting, Ed, very interesting (said whilst crunching through the end of a pencil to the yummy graphic centre [who needs caramel], in deep concentration and thought, that's if I'm actually capable of such a thing)  :D

Ed, you make an interesting point about the pressing up front, as I was reading an interview with Rodgers last night, where he was bemoaning the fact that playing 3 central defenders only left us with two up top, meaning we weren't able to press as effectively, as high up the pitch and win the ball back both earlier and higher up.
My solution would be change it, you don't need to suffer it, as you're the manager, but then that's probably the anti-Rodgers, non Liverpool manager supporting, non-Liverpool supporting side of my personality, so it must be ignored.

I'm with you on the 'diamond' shape with the top four. A diamond is so flexible in that it can be stretched in terms of height or width or it can be condensed either or both ways also. It's like with moving it back into midfield where you can have a deeper lying defensive midfielder at the foot of the diamond and a more attacking midfielder at the head, squeezing in the two wider midfielders when defending and allowing either width or condensed formation for more quick intricate one-touch passing in combination with the forwards and advanced midfielder.

Another thing you mentioned Ed, I think in another thread was the nature of defenders, ie that they can defend first and foremost. Kelly's an interesting choice in that as a defender he is much better than Johnson, but doesn't have Glenn's ability with the ball at his feet, but you don't neccesarily need to have an attacking full back with the ability of a winger to make him an effective attacking fullback.

I hate to say it but for me Gary Neville was the perfect kind of fullback. Strong defensively but so effective going forward, not because he could beat his man with blinding skill and then whip in the perfect cross, but because he would time his forward run in order to take away the opposition fullback, stopping his teammate in the wider position being doubled up on, or would time his run so that the ball could be slipped into him as he broke past the fullback or wide midfielder (which ever was there) and cross it into the box or pull it back without taking a touch and having to break stride (because of the correct angle and weight of pass). The move would switch direction rapidly twice making it harder to defend against but easy in the attacking sense as both passes/cross is played into space for the attacker running onto.

For such an overtly attacking fullback, Glenn doesn't score enough goals. If you're going to leave yourself open at the back, which happens a lot with Johnson being out of position, the disadvantage of that has to be turned to an advantage by the amount of goals scored and created, thereby offsetting chances and goals conceded at the other end. Allowing the opposition to create chances is nearly as bad as conceding a goal as it allows confidence and belief to build and the more chances conceded, it increases the likelihood of a goal being conceded. The style of play doesn't control the match from just a physical point of view but also a psychological point of view also. Stifle the belief and confidence of the opposition and you have one foot over the winning line. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 26, 2013, 10:44:29 AM
No I didn't. Anyroad, that's in the past and the fact remain Lucas has failed to establish himself at a level that would help our cause. I'm not saying he's no good, just that he doesn't offer what the team need to seriously fight it out for 4th.

OK, I see your mind is made up (though remember and apply that observation), so I'm not going to entice you into a 'back and forth', so if not Lucas, if he doesn't fit the bill, then who should we sign/use from the squad we have, and what would be the necessary qualities and characteristics required to fit the bill and what would be the role you would want him to play?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 26, 2013, 02:37:46 PM
Off to in-laws for dinner so will have to get back to you on that Tes.

Terrible terrible line-up for the WBA game. Both Lucas and Henderson ensure we have zip, zero, nil creativity and offensive quality in the center of the park. This will cost us points I'm afraid.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on October 26, 2013, 05:26:41 PM

Terrible terrible line-up for the WBA game. Both Lucas and Henderson ensure we have zip, zero, nil creativity and offensive quality in the center of the park. This will cost us points I'm afraid.

:) Or perhaps defensive strength in midfield allowed our attackers to have a field day?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on October 26, 2013, 10:52:12 PM
:) Or perhaps defensive strength in midfield allowed our attackers to have a field day?

Humble pie for me no doubt. But I take that in return for having witnessed our best performance this season. Lucas was arguably our best player behind Suarez, but then again he always performed brilliantly when the team did the same. Henderson's work ethic is indeed admirable but his ball handling poor as ever. Surely he conceded 10 unforced errors throughout the game. For those who recorded the game please look at his performance of the 79th minute.

Today we were up for it from minute one. Hopefully we can build on this and bring it to the Emirates against what more and more looks like a highly overrated Arsenal.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on October 27, 2013, 02:00:09 AM
Very interesting, Ed, very interesting (said whilst crunching through the end of a pencil to the yummy graphic centre [who needs caramel], in deep concentration and thought, that's if I'm actually capable of such a thing)  :D
Careful with the lead there!   ;D

Ed, you make an interesting point about the pressing up front, as I was reading an interview with Rodgers last night, where he was bemoaning the fact that playing 3 central defenders only left us with two up top, meaning we weren't able to press as effectively, as high up the pitch and win the ball back both earlier and higher up.
My solution would be change it, you don't need to suffer it, as you're the manager, but then that's probably the anti-Rodgers, non Liverpool manager supporting, non-Liverpool supporting side of my personality, so it must be ignored.
Yeah, this idea of balance - granted we got the result today, Suarez was in the f**king mood &
Sturridge is showing a lot of confidence at the moment. Anyway, that's why I'm perennially suspicious
of Gerrard & Johnson and 3 at the back stuff. I watch Johnson and I'm never sure what the f**k he's
doing on the football pitch, for me he's stuck between being a defender and winger and ends up being
neither imo, which makes me rather uncomfortable. Now granted Kelly is only feeling his way back
today, but immediately I see him making blocks when he's high up the pitch (defender's instinct!) - all
of a sudden himself and Henderson are pressing on that side together.

Similarly with Stevie, I only want to see 30 minutes from him. Sure he has something to offer but he's
not a 90 minute guy for me.  I feel he can inhibit others, upsets the balance and rhythm.

& then this 3 at the back crap. It may have gone unnoticed cos of the result today but West Brom had
their chances. Firstly it's f**king redundant if you have two proper central defenders and a defensive
midfielder. But secondly it messes up all the roles, who's responsible for what back there. Too many cooks.

I'm with you on the 'diamond' shape with the top four.
I'd love to see Coutinho tried in midfield in place of Stevie. Just to have a look at that for 30 minutes. It's
been so long since I've seen a player take a man out of the game in midfield with a trick (Alonso could do it, Molby too).
We seem to be missing a guy on the right there further upfield for the diamond (unless it's supposed to be Alberto).

For such an overtly attacking fullback, Glenn doesn't score enough goals. If you're going to leave yourself open at the back, which happens a lot with Johnson being out of position, the disadvantage of that has to be turned to an advantage by the amount of goals scored and created, thereby offsetting chances and goals conceded at the other end.
Precisely, fancy touches and unusual skill for a defender is no substitute for end product - I'd forgive him if
he was regularly contributing with assist and goals.

On a plus note, was impressed with the substitutions today (though arguably the last two could have come
a little earlier). Need depth and players to be fresh to succeed in the league.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on October 27, 2013, 08:58:37 PM
Doesn't this hapless dude play for us?  ;D

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n05DDVAl1uw

Fair play to him.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 29, 2013, 11:26:14 PM
Lucas was arguably our best player behind Suarez, but then again he always performed brilliantly when the team did the same. Henderson's work ethic is indeed admirable but his ball handling poor as ever. Surely he conceded 10 unforced errors throughout the game. For those who recorded the game please look at his performance of the 79th minute.

Or maybe he provides the base for the team to do well.  :D

Young players, especially those who don't know where they will be asked to play from week to week will make unforced errors, in fact if you were to focus on any player for 90 minutes you will see them. Heavy touches, misplaced passes, underhit passes, poor decision making in the use of the ball. It comes with the territory of being human, and as the game is generally played much quicker in the PL than probably on any other platform of the game the world over, the reduced thinking and execution time will result in more errors.
The human mind can't always reduce it's calculation time just because the situation requires it.
There's no doubt that Henderson is a work in progress and very long way from the finished article, but he's made good improvement in every aspect of his game since his first season. I wish we had a few more like him in terms of grit and determination, and as we've seen a run of games leading to improvement, I think we'd see likewise if he was played in a stable position. It's credit to him that the manager trusts him to play several different positions, and that Henderson never looks annoyed or downcast at being asked to play what he wouldn't regard to be his best position. Maybe the captain could learn a lesson or two from Henderson's attitude.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on October 31, 2013, 01:50:05 PM
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/othersports/article-2480788/Boston-Red-Sox-win-World-Series-St-Louis-Cardinals.html
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 31, 2013, 10:42:07 PM
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/othersports/article-2480788/Boston-Red-Sox-win-World-Series-St-Louis-Cardinals.html

Congratulations to them. Now can we have the same amount of attention paid to us. I bet they don't have to rely on Ian Ayre's equivalent to run the show either.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on October 31, 2013, 10:43:39 PM
Why did he have to:

http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpools-brendan-rodgers-were-title-2662594 (http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpools-brendan-rodgers-were-title-2662594)

Just keep our collective head down until May and see where it gets us. It worked nicely for the tortoise.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 01, 2013, 06:33:12 AM
Why did he have to:

http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpools-brendan-rodgers-were-title-2662594 (http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpools-brendan-rodgers-were-title-2662594)

Just keep our collective head down until May and see where it gets us. It worked nicely for the tortoise.

One day he'll learn Tes, it just ain't going to be any time soon...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 01, 2013, 12:36:54 PM
Just keep our collective head down until May and see where it gets us. It worked nicely for the tortoise.
He didn't actually say it!

http://www.merseyreds.com/2013/10/31/brendan-rodgers-pre-arsenal-press-conference-free-video-2/

I agree though any talk of the TITLE at the beginning of November...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 02, 2013, 06:00:17 PM
Change the formation...the strikers are stranded...bring on coutinho..our midfield is non existent  .if we don't we'll lose by 2 at least...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on November 02, 2013, 08:37:21 PM
Rodgers did what he could at half-time but Henderson's and Lucas' shortcomings aren't his fault. Hopefully he realised this 3-5-2/5-3-2 crap aint the way forward. Again Lucas was dismal and lost in a game where we needed leadership and urgency. He's gotten away with this crap for too long IMHO.

Henderson? Well don't get me started. It's harsh I know, but until we get these two replaced we won't stand a chance to get 4th. Simple as. Henderson's collapse when free on goal says it all really. "Oh, he runs and runs, he's such a superduperstar".

Congrats to the bottom for their best display of the season. You won't make the play-off's anyroad.

Oh, and Gerrard needs replacing ASAP. The wheels are coming off I'm afraid.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 03, 2013, 01:00:48 AM
Was looking at Arsenal's (we play them soon)  midfield/forward lineup
the other day. Just struck me that it was much more coherent, balanced
than ours.
Hmmm.... ::)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 03, 2013, 07:23:12 AM
In games like these, tactics and formation have to be spot on from the start, there are no second chances. Learnt nowt from the game against another good footballing side aka Southampton and with that in mind it's an idiotic selection with 3 at the back away at arsenal...ffs...
Cissokho was dire and thank gawd we haven't bought him, not flanagan's fault but he was picked to keep the formation going, Sakho preferred to Agger???,
considering we had 5 in midfield where were they? no support to the SAS and it's pretty pitiful to see sturridge running around the pitch with no backup at all...suarez underperformed too..and mignolet looks nervous as i would be with the shiite in front of me
If Rodgers can't get the formation and respond tactically with the limited squad we have then we'll be lucky to get 6th at the end of the season...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on November 03, 2013, 10:21:25 AM
In games like these, tactics and formation have to be spot on from the start, there are no second chances. Learnt nowt from the game against another good footballing side aka Southampton and with that in mind it's an idiotic selection with 3 at the back away at arsenal...ffs...
Cissokho was dire and thank gawd we haven't bought him, not flanagan's fault but he was picked to keep the formation going, Sakho preferred to Agger???,
considering we had 5 in midfield where were they? no support to the SAS and it's pretty pitiful to see sturridge running around the pitch with no backup at all...suarez underperformed too..and mignolet looks nervous as i would be with the shiite in front of me
If Rodgers can't get the formation and respond tactically with the limited squad we have then we'll be lucky to get 6th at the end of the season...

I agree with some of that Bart. Still, it is what it is and Gerrard, Henderson and Lucas looks more average by each game that pass. No top-50 team in Europe play 3-5-2/5-3-2 so why persist when we so obviously lack the squad?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on November 03, 2013, 01:57:26 PM
Theres alot been written and said in the media about yesterdays game but like last weeks win against West Brom I think results like these need to be taken with a bit of perspective. We were playing away to the leagues form team where we didnt play well, they did and we lost two nil. Its football, it happens. Same thing happened to Chelsea yesterday but they dont seem to attract the same media headlines that we do.

The truth is we are continually improving as a side. If whats on show on the pitch isnt a good enough barometer for that then you can look at our points tally this year compared to last. At the same point this season we have approximately twice as many points as last. Reflecting on some articles in todays papers its their job to analyse things to death. So after yesterdays performance the general consensus seems to be that we are not good enough to maintain a title challenge. Yet in six weeks time if we manage to maintain the start we've had to the season those same journo's will have selective amnesia about what they are saying today and we will be deservedly or not be back labelled as challengers.

So without going into any real analysis on yesterdays game I plan to take this one on the chin. We lost, we only played well in patches and the weaknesses in our side which have been evident from the outset were magnified that little bit more in the wake of yesterdays defeat. Were we to lose two or three in a row against any of our closest rivals it may be cause for concern but at the end of the day its just a 2 nil defeat without us learning too much that we didnt already know.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 03, 2013, 02:41:29 PM
I agree with some of that Bart. Still, it is what it is and Gerrard, Henderson and Lucas looks more average by each game that pass. No top-50 team in Europe play 3-5-2/5-3-2 so why persist when we so obviously lack the squad?
I'd say the root problem for us in that game is his indecisiveness over
the two centre backs (something we've pointed to on here).

You add in the injuries/sicknesses Enrique/Johnson, lack of cover at RB &
surprising inclusions Flanagan (came out of nowhere, that one - throw him in
away at the Emirates?) & we started with:

          X                      Toure/Skrtel/Sakho                     X

Flanagan                           Lucas                                  Cissokho
                               Henderson  Gerrrard

                                Sturridge     Suarez

In the first minute of the commentary Lee Dixon pointed to the
space where the Xs are with that formation. I still feel that it's a
question of clear roles in defence, who does what & it's just too
easy with all those defensively minded players on the pitch to
leave picking up an extra man to someone else or even more
simply the players asking where should I be right now?

Then you look at who's organising these 6 defenders on the pitch?

What I see is a horrid transfer of this notion of fluidity and
interchanging roles that Rodgers has in the final third to defense!

Defense is completely different, it's all about structure, organisation and roles
2 proper CBs, a defensive midfielder and 2 fullbacks should be enough.

Lots of these things get sorted out naturally when you have the right combination
of 2 centre backs & a decent defensive midfielder (which we have in Lucas).

Anyway, then you look at the two guys who've been selected as the high wing backs
& you get these dreaded attenders/defackers, players who do neither well. Hence as
Bart pointed out the 2 strikers are starved of the ball in the first half & there's confusion
at the back.

I think we may have started the game decently, but as the half wore it became apparent
that we lacked any control of the game.

We finished the game with:

Henderson                Toure/Skrtel              Sakho?

                                  Lucas/Gerrard

Moses                                                         Coutinho

                              Sturridge       Suarez

Granted we were actually able to create some chances but the game was
over at this point - Just seems a mess to me (with all the focus on over 80% of
our goals been scored by 2 players, the team as a whole wasn't ready for the
demands of a big game away).

The only other point I'd make is, there didn't seem to be the appetite for a big
game - a lack of sharpness that comes with regularly playing in the CL maybe?
Lucas was dreadfully ponderous in possession imo.

People will talk about injuries but by my estimation Arsenal were missing
Wilshere/Ox/Flamini/Walcott, so best to take our medicine and go back to
beating the league's canon fodder at home.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on November 03, 2013, 06:13:09 PM
I agree with some of that Bart. Still, it is what it is and Gerrard, Henderson and Lucas looks more average by each game that pass. No top-50 team in Europe play 3-5-2/5-3-2 so why persist when we so obviously lack the squad?

Juventus play 3-5-2 to accommodate Pirlo. Thing is they have actual midfielders in Pogba, Vidal (imo the best central midfielder in the world except for those at Bayern or Barca) and Marchisio who are all excellent and can play that way to allow the brilliance of Pirlo and his play making skills.

But I whole heartedly agree we should drop this 3 at the back nonsense.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on November 03, 2013, 11:41:03 PM
Juventus play 3-5-2 to accommodate Pirlo. Thing is they have actual midfielders in Pogba, Vidal (imo the best central midfielder in the world except for those at Bayern or Barca) and Marchisio who are all excellent and can play that way to allow the brilliance of Pirlo and his play making skills.

But I whole heartedly agree we should drop this 3 at the back nonsense.

Udinese used to, may still do, but I haven't watched Serie A for a while. Continental teams who have employed it don't simply stick three centre halves there, they utilise 3 defenders to form a 3 man defensive unit.
I doubt any of our centre halves have ever played the system and it shows.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on November 03, 2013, 11:48:34 PM
As Juan says, if things are kept in perspective, we were last season's seventh best team, and this season has to see an improvement from that, 5th being the minimum.
There's a huge leap from 7th to 4th, as even Man City  showed despite their spending, and 7th to title challengers is just fantasy nonsense.
We lost away to the league leaders, the team best team overall so far this season and the most consistent in the league.
In addition we went there and set up in a way that would allow them to play to their strengths, and that's just what they did.

Hopefully now we don't see or hear the words 'Liverpool', 'title' and 'challengers' in the same sentence for the rest of the season.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on November 04, 2013, 12:09:47 AM
As Juan says, if things are kept in perspective, we were last season's seventh best team, and this season has to see an improvement from that, 5th being the minimum.
There's a huge leap from 7th to 4th, as even Man City  showed despite their spending, and 7th to title challengers is just fantasy nonsense.
We lost away to the league leaders, the team best team overall so far this season and the most consistent in the league.
In addition we went there and set up in a way that would allow them to play to their strengths, and that's just what they did.

Hopefully now we don't see or hear the words 'Liverpool', 'title' and 'challengers' in the same sentence for the rest of the season.

Don't hold your breath mate. Wins over Fulham and the Bitters will no doubt see us have at least one finger on the title, by some accounts.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 04, 2013, 12:20:20 AM
to form a 3 man defensive unit.
Precisely. Annoying this whole formation w*nk
because the great LFC teams kept it so simple
& made it look so easy (When I see Toure attempting
to pass to Skrtel and Giroud almost scoring, I lose
the f**king will to live).

In addition we went there and set up in a way that would allow them to play to their strengths, and that's just what they did.
I looked at the teamsheet & went f**k. The really annoying
thing was the cohesion of Arsenal, working as a team whereas
we seemed to be two separate entities a glut of defenders at 1
end, two strikers at the other & Arsenal dominating the space
in between...

In fact strangely Arsenal looked like everything Rodgers craves
(bar the crazy passing around at the back bit).

Wins over Fulham and the Bitters will no doubt see us have at least one finger on the title, by some accounts.
They should look at the December fixture list, away to Chelsea, City & Spurs... :o 9 points!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on November 04, 2013, 08:36:05 AM
In fairness they completely lost the game last 25 and there was this feeling among neutrals in the pub if we score before 85 we'll get a Point at least. They were good but not that good.

Hopefully Rodgers will be as good a learner from his own mistakes as he's been in the past.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 04, 2013, 05:47:04 PM
Cox's analysis of the game:

http://www.zonalmarking.net/2013/11/04/arsenal-2-0-liverpool-arsenal-get-the-better-of-both-of-rodgers-systems/

Interesting to see it without the fan's prejudices and passions:

"Arsenal were the better side – just about keeping Liverpool’s front two quiet, and dominating both centrally and down the flanks in possession."

"There’s a lack of creativity from deeper positions, however – Steven Gerrard was unusually quiet – and Liverpool tend to be dominated down the flanks with this formation, conceding too much pressure"

"if Arsenal could keep Suarez and Sturridge quiet, they would win the game."

"Arsenal had two major solutions to the threat posed by Liverpool’s front two. First, Mikel Arteta played an extremely deep role in front of the defence, almost as a forward-playing centre-back at times...Second, Koscielny was at his most proactive. When playing alongside Mertesacker he’s a very forward-thinking defender who relentlessly closes down opponents when they drop into deeper positions."

"When Liverpool broke quickly, they were dangerous, but when Arsenal got men behind the ball, they lacked incision from the midfielders."

"Crossing has been an prominent part of Arsenal’s gameplan recently"

"You can also partly blame Liverpool’s system for the concession – as Mamadou Sakho moved out of the defence they remained two-against-one with Giroud in the centre, but Flanagan’s advanced positioning meant he wasn’t able to get back goalside of Cazorla, who found a pocket of space – a proper right-back (in a back four) would probably have been covering."

" Liverpool’s midfield zone seemed rather disorganised, with Gerrard and Lucas often bypassed too easily."

"For long periods – especially once ahead – Arsenal took advantage of the fact Liverpool’s three-versus-one against Giroud meant Arsenal had more men in deeper positions. Arsenal always had a free player, effectively nine-against-seven across the rest of the pitch – and while they didn’t relentlessly threaten Mignolet, they calmed the tempo of the game and retained control."


and he finishes with:

"Rodgers’ side were eventually well beaten, but it’s hard to fault many of his decisions. It was understandable to start with the 3-5-2 given its recent success, and the decision to keep Henderson central made sense considering his performance in this game last year. His forward charges from the top of midfield allowed Liverpool to break dangerously.

It was also a logical early decision to revert to the 4-4-2 with Coutinho coming inside off the flank – he was dangerous, if frustratingly ineffective with his passing. Moving Henderson to right-back, in order to accommodate another attacker also made sense, with Liverpool having a good spell of late pressure."
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on November 04, 2013, 10:53:48 PM
Cox's analysis of the game:

http://www.zonalmarking.net/2013/11/04/arsenal-2-0-liverpool-arsenal-get-the-better-of-both-of-rodgers-systems/

Interesting to see it without the fan's prejudices and passions:

"Arsenal were the better side – just about keeping Liverpool’s front two quiet, and dominating both centrally and down the flanks in possession."

"There’s a lack of creativity from deeper positions, however – Steven Gerrard was unusually quiet – and Liverpool tend to be dominated down the flanks with this formation, conceding too much pressure"

"if Arsenal could keep Suarez and Sturridge quiet, they would win the game."

"Arsenal had two major solutions to the threat posed by Liverpool’s front two. First, Mikel Arteta played an extremely deep role in front of the defence, almost as a forward-playing centre-back at times...Second, Koscielny was at his most proactive. When playing alongside Mertesacker he’s a very forward-thinking defender who relentlessly closes down opponents when they drop into deeper positions."

"When Liverpool broke quickly, they were dangerous, but when Arsenal got men behind the ball, they lacked incision from the midfielders."

"Crossing has been an prominent part of Arsenal’s gameplan recently"

"You can also partly blame Liverpool’s system for the concession – as Mamadou Sakho moved out of the defence they remained two-against-one with Giroud in the centre, but Flanagan’s advanced positioning meant he wasn’t able to get back goalside of Cazorla, who found a pocket of space – a proper right-back (in a back four) would probably have been covering."

" Liverpool’s midfield zone seemed rather disorganised, with Gerrard and Lucas often bypassed too easily."

"For long periods – especially once ahead – Arsenal took advantage of the fact Liverpool’s three-versus-one against Giroud meant Arsenal had more men in deeper positions. Arsenal always had a free player, effectively nine-against-seven across the rest of the pitch – and while they didn’t relentlessly threaten Mignolet, they calmed the tempo of the game and retained control."


and he finishes with:

"Rodgers’ side were eventually well beaten, but it’s hard to fault many of his decisions. It was understandable to start with the 3-5-2 given its recent success, and the decision to keep Henderson central made sense considering his performance in this game last year. His forward charges from the top of midfield allowed Liverpool to break dangerously.

It was also a logical early decision to revert to the 4-4-2 with Coutinho coming inside off the flank – he was dangerous, if frustratingly ineffective with his passing. Moving Henderson to right-back, in order to accommodate another attacker also made sense, with Liverpool having a good spell of late pressure."


Good read indeed. Still wonder what IF any other player than Henderson would've got his chance after 10, or what IF Atkinson didn't disallow our perfect goal after taking that free-kick quickly. Amazing decision really to call it off just to award a yellow.

Anyroad, the most important thing right now is to get back to a back-4. That would allow us to switch between 4-3-3 and 4-5-1 depending on the run of play and whether or not we're on top of things. As it has turned out, the 3-5-2/5-3-2 formation requires too big alterations when it fails (which it will in most games away from home regardless of opposition. Remember Sunderland's domination for periods of the game?).
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 04, 2013, 11:46:57 PM
Good read indeed. Still wonder what IF any other player than Henderson would've got his chance after 10, or what IF Atkinson didn't disallow our perfect goal after taking that free-kick quickly. Amazing decision really to call it off just to award a yellow.

Anyroad, the most important thing right now is to get back to a back-4. That would allow us to switch between 4-3-3 and 4-5-1 depending on the run of play and whether or not we're on top of things. As it has turned out, the 3-5-2/5-3-2 formation requires too big alterations when it fails (which it will in most games away from home regardless of opposition. Remember Sunderland's domination for periods of the game?).
Yeah was a chastening experience the whole thing. The
problem with the 3 at the back is it may work at home against
lower teams, but it fudges the notion of a two CB combination
and it seems strange to me that Arsenal could effectively contain
two strikers with a more traditional 2 CBs and a DM while we looked
ridiculous with 3 CBs up against 1 striker.

Anyway, barring the derby, which is probably going to turn out to be
the significant battle for us this season - what I thought the Arsenal
game might have been -  our next big assignment is away to Spurs.
I note Cox has also been doing some research there:

http://www.theguardian.com/football/2013/nov/03/tottenham

I'll leave it to Tes to sort this one out:

(http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Sport/Pix/columnists/2013/11/3/1383501277369/Michael-Cox-Tactics-008.jpg)

My pencil needs sharpening and the cat destroyed my slippers!  :)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 06, 2013, 11:58:29 AM
I see we're linked with Cabaye from Newcastle...he might be a useful addition to our midfield...if we got him and another quality player...and let aspas, alberto and allen (does rodgers use a alphabetical index on transfer targets?) all go...then we might salvage 5th from this season...if we repeat the jan transfer window of last season...then we might, just might be in with a shout...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on November 06, 2013, 12:16:02 PM
I see we're linked with Cabaye from Newcastle...he might be a useful addition to our midfield...if we got him and another quality player...and let aspas, alberto and allen (does rodgers use a alphabetical index on transfer targets?) all go...then we might salvage 5th from this season...if we repeat the jan transfer window of last season...then we might, just might be in with a shout...

I don't doubt Cabayé's qualities, but I do wish were looking for midfielders of a different built. I'm much more into the Diamé, Wanyama, Dembele kind. Players who can dominate the center of the field by their sheer physical presence.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 07, 2013, 12:10:23 AM
then we might salvage 5th from this season...
With all the talk about top 4 (and always keep
in mind our diminished fixture list this season,
virtually paired back to the bare minimum of 38
games). I can't for the life of me see us mounting
a campaign in the CL next season, I'd be gobsmacked.

People can talk all day about first 11s when fully fit, but
Arsenal have been playing CL every season for the last
decade. For us, the game last Saturday was massive. For
them, more like a tricky fixture (warm-up) in a sequence of
bigger tests.

& given our seeming unpreparedness (Squad, tactics) for away
at the Emirates, it's self-evident that this time next season we
are unlikely to be troubling Europe's elite in the CL.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on November 07, 2013, 09:41:00 AM
For us, the game last Saturday was massive. For
them, more like a tricky fixture (warm-up) in a sequence of
bigger tests.

It's funny how two people can see the same thing so differently. For me it was the other way round. It was more a test for us, whereas three consecutive homedefeats for them could've seen the wheels come off.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 07, 2013, 12:03:47 PM
.

People can talk all day about first 11s when fully fit, but
Arsenal have been playing CL every season for the last
decade. For us, the game last Saturday was massive. For
them, more like a tricky fixture (warm-up) in a sequence of
bigger tests.

& given our seeming unpreparedness (Squad, tactics) for away
at the Emirates, it's self-evident that this time next season we
are unlikely to be troubling Europe's elite in the CL.

I think we have suarez and sturridge but need another quality striker...
in midfield we have lucas, coutinho and perhaps gerrard as an impact player...cos he aint getting younger..
in defence we need a left sided defender ...but we're ok with agger, skrtel, toure, kelly, johnson, sakho...
so with that in mind it means we have about 8 quality players...our midfield is horribly lightweight as arsenal showed...
the problem is that missing 3 of quality is what will make us struggle in the future...

as for any talk of the champions league...it would mean massive investment...
midfield is key....and a defensive midfielder essential like wanyama...2 wingers and another attacking midifielder like cabaye would be ideal...
another attacker is essential...
and a good left sided defender would be essential..
that is if we get top 4...cos one stupid loss to fulham and the others win...we'd be sitting in 7th and all nonsense talk of titles would hopefully peter out...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on November 08, 2013, 09:13:23 AM
I think we have suarez and sturridge but need another quality striker...
in midfield we have lucas, coutinho and perhaps gerrard as an impact player...cos he aint getting younger..
in defence we need a left sided defender ...but we're ok with agger, skrtel, toure, kelly, johnson, sakho...
so with that in mind it means we have about 8 quality players...our midfield is horribly lightweight as arsenal showed...
the problem is that missing 3 of quality is what will make us struggle in the future...

as for any talk of the champions league...it would mean massive investment...
midfield is key....and a defensive midfielder essential like wanyama...2 wingers and another attacking midifielder like cabaye would be ideal...
another attacker is essential...
and a good left sided defender would be essential..
that is if we get top 4...cos one stupid loss to fulham and the others win...we'd be sitting in 7th and all nonsense talk of titles would hopefully peter out...

While wins tomorrow and @ Goodison while Arsenal lose to the Mancs and draw against So'ton will see us joint top. Why the doom and gloom? It's not like Rodgers haven't made tactical mistakes before and recovered from it rapidly.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 08, 2013, 02:04:04 PM
While wins tomorrow and @ Goodison while Arsenal lose to the Mancs and draw against So'ton will see us joint top. Why the doom and gloom? It's not like Rodgers haven't made tactical mistakes before and recovered from it rapidly.

note to self: have a look at martinmarx's pregame comment against west brom...aka we're doomed!!
nothing has convinced me in rodgers tenure that he is vaguely tactically astute...it's all very well being good against the lower teams...but until we start to win against the top 4 teams and regain our position (in the top 4) then we can start saying he can be ok on tactics...with suarez and sturridge in a certain mood our team will win...
did you see sturridge's disgust at the lack of the pass in the 86th minute against bottom.nal...said it all...depsite rodgers 3 at the back with luck we could have got something out of the game...
but we can't rely on luck and chance and if the moon is in a correct position...
we need 2 world class midfielders..in jan...cos i still don't see us getting anywhere near the top...
it's not doom and gloom...just solid realism...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 09, 2013, 11:10:20 AM
nothing has convinced me in rodgers tenure that he is vaguely tactically astute...it's all very well being good against the lower teams...but until we start to win against the top 4 teams and regain our position (in the top 4) then we can start saying he can be ok on tactics...
Agree.

Home to Fulham should be comfortable (though I note
they scored a few crackers against Crystal Palace, I think).

I feel fans get confused because the press love a manager
from this part of the world who experiments with formations,
formation w*nk - instead of keeping things simple and getting
results with what you have.

They get sick of the likes of Wenger, Benitez, Mourinho, Pellegrini,
Villas Boas, Martinez etc.. being the tactical ones.

Hence Rodgers gets an easy ride. Terms such as 'brave' are bandied
about.

As Bart says, with a player like Suarez in the mix, we don't need
much tactics at home against lower opposition. I haven't been
impressed with us away from home, at all, this season. The Swansea
game made me wince.

The match against Arsenal was a perfect example of a big game
where he had to think on his feet (with Johnson's illness) and
it was suspect decision-making - could just as easily be the scenario
last season where the lad got sent off Man Utd. v. Madrid - sh.it happens,
where's the plan?

Last season's European campaign was full of quirky decisions.

His dithering over defence and loyalty to Gerrard are other areas where
he appears to lack the confidence to make decisions.

Ultimately, Rodgers talent will bring us to a point where he can take us
no further and we'll need to bring in a top guy (I'm keeping an eagle eye
on Sami's Leverkusen). Essentially he is a career manager, bit like
a career politician, mates with everyone in the game, a guy who aims
to be managing football teams (not serially winning trophies) for, as he says
himself, the next 20 to 25 years.

It's not a question of him being a bad, average and some would say good manager,
it's just he doesn't have the X-factor character to break monopolies (instead of being
broken by them).

& sure look, every manager in the division will say if they had the players or the resources.
It's not about that.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 09, 2013, 11:41:02 AM

Ultimately, Rodgers talent will bring us to a point where he can take us
no further and we'll need to bring in a top guy (I'm keeping an eagle eye
on Sami's Leverkusen). Essentially he is a career manager, bit like
a career politician, mates with everyone in the game, a guy who aims
to be managing football teams (not serially winning trophies) for, as he says
himself, the next 20 to 25 years.

It's not a question of him being a bad, average and some would say good manager,
it's just he doesn't have the X-factor character to break monopolies (instead of being
broken by them).


Bang on....
on a jungian analysis 'wanting to be liked' is the ego talking...and i've seen a lot of signs that rodgers ego is who's in control....the big portrait, the need to speak to increase his fame on inane shed that he should keep well out of and the talk that he's here as saviour to Liverpool fc ...you can control the ego...and i'd advise rodgers to read jung to do so...

once he has control of his ego...then he can break all the rules...and which is what Liverpool football club should be all about...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 09, 2013, 05:23:06 PM
Thank gawd we went back to 4-4-2....Agger even played! Have seen nothing of the game or highlights or even writeups but at least we got rid of the crappy 3 at the back...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on November 09, 2013, 06:32:10 PM
Hence Rodgers gets an easy ride. Terms such as 'brave' are bandied
about.

As Bart says, with a player like Suarez in the mix, we don't need
much tactics at home against lower opposition. I haven't been
impressed with us away from home, at all, this season. The Swansea
game made me wince.

The match against Arsenal was a perfect example of a big game
where he had to think on his feet (with Johnson's illness) and
it was suspect decision-making - could just as easily be the scenario
last season where the lad got sent off Man Utd. v. Madrid - sh.it happens,
where's the plan?

Last season's European campaign was full of quirky decisions.

His dithering over defence and loyalty to Gerrard are other areas where
he appears to lack the confidence to make decisions.

Ultimately, Rodgers talent will bring us to a point where he can take us
no further and we'll need to bring in a top guy (I'm keeping an eagle eye
on Sami's Leverkusen). Essentially he is a career manager, bit like
a career politician, mates with everyone in the game, a guy who aims
to be managing football teams (not serially winning trophies) for, as he says
himself, the next 20 to 25 years.

It's not a question of him being a bad, average and some would say good manager,
it's just he doesn't have the X-factor character to break monopolies (instead of being
broken by them).

& sure look, every manager in the division will say if they had the players or the resources.
It's not about that.

That's the most scornful, condescending and arrogant post I ever read on a Liverpool forum. I take it your proud of the way you "support" the club and its manager. It can't be easy sitting around with the answers to EVERYTHING.

If your failed and egoistic hero Rafa had repeated the same run Rodgers did since January 1st you would no doubt claim he's a greated manager than Shankly, Sir Bob and Fergie.

4-0 in your face. LMFAO.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 09, 2013, 06:51:40 PM
4-0 in your face. LMFAO.
What are u mumbling about, we knew it'd be
easy today vs. Fulham. I said so earlier.

Home to Fulham should be comfortable
More important is the first clean sheet in ages. I wonder
if that has anything to do with Skrtel & Agger back playing
together in a two-man, something we've been on about
in here for ages?


Still when the coot gets back we have:


                                                                Skrtel/Agger (Combo)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on November 09, 2013, 11:01:19 PM
Think on his feet and you give the example last week of Johnson who was ill at the last moment. Well seeing as we were away in London and could only bring 18 players he had two choices in reality. Play Toure or Skrtel at right back or play Flanagan at right back.

Now I watched that game and for me Flanagan acquit himself quite well in that game.

You say the press love a man who is from that part of the world who messes about with formations and instead of keeping it simple. Well what do you constitute as messing about? because if you remember a certain player was banned for 6 games so we had to play a certain formation to take that into account. Then when he comes back we change the formation from a four to a three at the back. So he's changed the formation twice then.........so that's messing about in your mind.

Well in my mind have different formations for different opponents is a good thing and I am glad to see Brendan has the confidence to change formations when he sees fit - whether I agree with them or not is a different matter - however results suggest that he is coping fine with his changes to formation.

I've never seen the word brave been bandied about us during Rodgers tenure. Please provide a link. Oh and Rodgers getting a free ride? a big LOL didn't you see the criticism of him when he was wanting to sign Sturridge saying Sturridge is overrated and what not. Didn't you see criticism he got for bringing in that old has been Kolo Toure. Didn't you see the stick he got when in 2012 we started off poorly. However since January 2013 there hasn't been much to criticise because, you know, we are performing and winning games.

"with a player like Suarez in the mix, we don't need much tactics at home against lower opposition."

Lol so under the King and under Rafa when we drew almost as many games as we won at Anfield against lesser opposition we didn't need much tactics because we have Gerrard/Torres and Kenny had Suarez???? Of course you need tactics against them you fool. You need to decide if you want to press high up the pitch, or be compact. Whether to play it into the wide areas more often. Whether its better to pack the midfield in because the opposition will most probably only play one up front. No we just let the players get on with it because we don't need much tactics......... :-X

You I haven't been impressed with us away from home, at all, this season. That makes two of us then because neither have I. I happen to believe its mainly down to playing 3 at the back which exposes our midfield. Swansea game was the debut for Sakho so a little leeway is needed for that. But after a good 1st half performance the players didn't press like that did second half.


Yes last season in europe was full of quirky decisions but then again did we have the squad to cope with that and compete for a top 4 place in the league? Rodgers also was new to this and I happen to think will have learned a great deal from it - I say this because he has shown an aptitude for learning from his mistakes already so I see no reason he won't if we  are in europe again next year. Had Sturridge and Coutinho been available from the start of that campaign things may have been different.

"His dithering over defence and loyalty to Gerrard are other areas where he appears to lack the confidence to make decisions."

Firstly the defence. As I stated in this post he made change in tactics from a 4 to a 3 to see if it makes the SAS a better partnership, which it clearly did. However I was and am not a big fan of 3 at the back but results suggest that this change didn't have a bad affect on results. In terms of personnel well until today he's stuck with Toure. Sakho has been an ever present since he came in and Agger to until he got injured and Skrtel too his place. Skrtel to his credit has taken his chance and done well so Agger, quite rightly, has had to wait for his opportunity back into the team. That is of course unless you want to say that you don't care about form and what not just select what you perceive as the best players. Form doesn't count in your book. Nor probably does fatigue I guess....

Loyalty to Gerrard? I agree with you. Which may surprise you but I agree with you. He is being too loyal to Gerrard. However here is where I branch off from your stance. I see it from the point of view that Brendan knows the day he drops Gerrard he'll get it full throttle from the media and the supporters - in some quarters who can't see that Gerrard's legs have gone. Brendan is playing a coy game. He knows that he has to be careful in this situation. We've seen a better manager being sacked in Benitez because Gerrard wanted him gone. So he's being coy. Anyway I still think Gerrard can do for us what Pirlo does for Juventus. Gerrard's legs have gone but still possess's that killer pass and game intelligence to have a role. But as the saying goes until Gerrard himself realises his legs have gone then he still see himself as this box to box player. So I think Brendan is playing the smart game with Gerrard actually. But I agree he is being too loyal. But like an addict the first and hardest step is to admit that you are one. Until Gerrard admits to himself that he isn't the player he used to be and that his legs have gone, Brendan will have to play the smart game with him.

Brendan's talent can take us to the Premier league and CL. I no zero doubts about that. So you see Sami, a guy with lesser experience than Brendan as being a top guy? Hey I love Sami and he IS a top guy but he isn't a top manager either - and Brendan hasn't proven he is either before you bark at me. But Brendan has proved that he learns from his mistakes and he has proved he can instill an philosophy into the squad.

What the hell is a  career manager?! Don't all managers want a long a prosperous career in management. Or you do you mean a career manager is one who changes jobs every couple of years ala Mourinho and Ancelotti. Well firstly all managers are career managers and secondly  I believe Brendan ultimate aim is to manage England have them playing to a philosophy that we are seeing at Liverpool and saw at Swansea. He wants more english players learning to play that way. So for sure I believe that is his ultimate aim.

Am I bothered by that? no because if he is in a position for that it must mean he is doing something right for us and I also don't see him going until we have established ourselves in the CL and won a few trophies and not least the premier league. I genuinely think Brendan will win us the league in the next 3-4 years.

He doesn't have x factor? Well if who has the x factor? In my mind currently only two men have that Guardiola and Mourinho and no way in hell do I want Mourinho here. Does Moyes have the x factor? does Wenger? does Ancelotti? Ask Real Madrid supporters if you think Ancelotti has the x factor and they'll laugh at you. He's played FIVE formations already in madrid so God knows what you'd say if he was here and did that!

Of course its about players and resources!! Or is it just coincidence that the best resourced teams wins the majority of trophies!!!!!

There are four key components to win trophies. Manager. Players. Resources and Time. IMO we have 2 1/2 out of the four. We have the manager and FSG will give him time. A quarter each to resources and players. Once the stadium refurbishment is done we'll be able to compete fully with others in england.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 10, 2013, 12:01:07 AM
Think on his feet and you give the example last week of Johnson who was ill at the last moment. Well seeing as we were away in London and could only bring 18 players he had two choices in reality. Play Toure or Skrtel at right back or play Flanagan at right back.

Now I watched that game and for me Flanagan acquit himself quite well in that game.

You say the press love a man who is from that part of the world who messes about with formations and instead of keeping it simple. Well what do you constitute as messing about? because if you remember a certain player was banned for 6 games so we had to play a certain formation to take that into account. Then when he comes back we change the formation from a four to a three at the back. So he's changed the formation twice then.........so that's messing about in your mind.

Well in my mind have different formations for different opponents is a good thing and I am glad to see Brendan has the confidence to change formations when he sees fit - whether I agree with them or not is a different matter - however results suggest that he is coping fine with his changes to formation.

I've never seen the word brave been bandied about us during Rodgers tenure. Please provide a link. Oh and Rodgers getting a free ride? a big LOL didn't you see the criticism of him when he was wanting to sign Sturridge saying Sturridge is overrated and what not. Didn't you see criticism he got for bringing in that old has been Kolo Toure. Didn't you see the stick he got when in 2012 we started off poorly. However since January 2013 there hasn't been much to criticise because, you know, we are performing and winning games.

"with a player like Suarez in the mix, we don't need much tactics at home against lower opposition."

Lol so under the King and under Rafa when we drew almost as many games as we won at Anfield against lesser opposition we didn't need much tactics because we have Gerrard/Torres and Kenny had Suarez???? Of course you need tactics against them you fool. You need to decide if you want to press high up the pitch, or be compact. Whether to play it into the wide areas more often. Whether its better to pack the midfield in because the opposition will most probably only play one up front. No we just let the players get on with it because we don't need much tactics......... :-X

You I haven't been impressed with us away from home, at all, this season. That makes two of us then because neither have I. I happen to believe its mainly down to playing 3 at the back which exposes our midfield. Swansea game was the debut for Sakho so a little leeway is needed for that. But after a good 1st half performance the players didn't press like that did second half.


Yes last season in europe was full of quirky decisions but then again did we have the squad to cope with that and compete for a top 4 place in the league? Rodgers also was new to this and I happen to think will have learned a great deal from it - I say this because he has shown an aptitude for learning from his mistakes already so I see no reason he won't if we  are in europe again next year. Had Sturridge and Coutinho been available from the start of that campaign things may have been different.

"His dithering over defence and loyalty to Gerrard are other areas where he appears to lack the confidence to make decisions."

Firstly the defence. As I stated in this post he made change in tactics from a 4 to a 3 to see if it makes the SAS a better partnership, which it clearly did. However I was and am not a big fan of 3 at the back but results suggest that this change didn't have a bad affect on results. In terms of personnel well until today he's stuck with Toure. Sakho has been an ever present since he came in and Agger to until he got injured and Skrtel too his place. Skrtel to his credit has taken his chance and done well so Agger, quite rightly, has had to wait for his opportunity back into the team. That is of course unless you want to say that you don't care about form and what not just select what you perceive as the best players. Form doesn't count in your book. Nor probably does fatigue I guess....

Loyalty to Gerrard? I agree with you. Which may surprise you but I agree with you. He is being too loyal to Gerrard. However here is where I branch off from your stance. I see it from the point of view that Brendan knows the day he drops Gerrard he'll get it full throttle from the media and the supporters - in some quarters who can't see that Gerrard's legs have gone. Brendan is playing a coy game. He knows that he has to be careful in this situation. We've seen a better manager being sacked in Benitez because Gerrard wanted him gone. So he's being coy. Anyway I still think Gerrard can do for us what Pirlo does for Juventus. Gerrard's legs have gone but still possess's that killer pass and game intelligence to have a role. But as the saying goes until Gerrard himself realises his legs have gone then he still see himself as this box to box player. So I think Brendan is playing the smart game with Gerrard actually. But I agree he is being too loyal. But like an addict the first and hardest step is to admit that you are one. Until Gerrard admits to himself that he isn't the player he used to be and that his legs have gone, Brendan will have to play the smart game with him.

Brendan's talent can take us to the Premier league and CL. I no zero doubts about that. So you see Sami, a guy with lesser experience than Brendan as being a top guy? Hey I love Sami and he IS a top guy but he isn't a top manager either - and Brendan hasn't proven he is either before you bark at me. But Brendan has proved that he learns from his mistakes and he has proved he can instill an philosophy into the squad.

What the hell is a  career manager?! Don't all managers want a long a prosperous career in management. Or you do you mean a career manager is one who changes jobs every couple of years ala Mourinho and Ancelotti. Well firstly all managers are career managers and secondly  I believe Brendan ultimate aim is to manage England have them playing to a philosophy that we are seeing at Liverpool and saw at Swansea. He wants more english players learning to play that way. So for sure I believe that is his ultimate aim.

Am I bothered by that? no because if he is in a position for that it must mean he is doing something right for us and I also don't see him going until we have established ourselves in the CL and won a few trophies and not least the premier league. I genuinely think Brendan will win us the league in the next 3-4 years.

He doesn't have x factor? Well if who has the x factor? In my mind currently only two men have that Guardiola and Mourinho and no way in hell do I want Mourinho here. Does Moyes have the x factor? does Wenger? does Ancelotti? Ask Real Madrid supporters if you think Ancelotti has the x factor and they'll laugh at you. He's played FIVE formations already in madrid so God knows what you'd say if he was here and did that!

Of course its about players and resources!! Or is it just coincidence that the best resourced teams wins the majority of trophies!!!!!

There are four key components to win trophies. Manager. Players. Resources and Time. IMO we have 2 1/2 out of the four. We have the manager and FSG will give him time. A quarter each to resources and players. Once the stadium refurbishment is done we'll be able to compete fully with others in england.

224, I'm somewhat impressed that you are finally
engaging in debate on here.

Your point of view is welcome.

See my stuff is reasonably hardline, I demand high
standards. I offer a point of view which steers clear
from often more predictable fan-type views
you get elsewhere. It works as a sounding board.

I'm not saying I'm Rodgers number 1 fan (it's clear I'm not),
but at the same time, I've not called for his head & am
quite patient in that regard.

That's why the Dude was priceless on here, because he was
a wee bit more hardline than me, Tes a little less so but us 3
generally agree and could play some neat triangles of merciless
criticism  :) Often with Bart doing a DM role, watching our backs.

Juan & Marx are over the other side (haven't seen ASI in ages, the
negativity puts him off, i think).

It's views and opinion, an online kickabout.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on November 13, 2013, 11:17:02 PM
That's the most scornful, condescending and arrogant post I ever read on a Liverpool forum.

You've lead a very sheltered 'forum life' if that's accurate, Martin.  ;D  Try the Liverpool Way. We're all pussy cats in comparison.

Fulham are low on confidence at the moment, but we can only beat what's in front of us and that was done reasonably comfortably.

The Arsenal game showed the gulf that still exists between us and seasoned Top Four teams, and demonstrated yet again that the whole defensive side of our game is still a long way from where it needs to be.

I wonder who we have coaching the defensive side of the game - maybe a defensive coach is the order of the day.

Good to see Edward224 back in addition to Martin. We may all see things from different perspectives but we all want the same thing at the end of the day match.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on November 13, 2013, 11:32:02 PM
I don't doubt Cabayé's qualities, but I do wish were looking for midfielders of a different built. I'm much more into the Diamé, Wanyama, Dembele kind. Players who can dominate the center of the field by their sheer physical presence.

Wanyama's error was horrid on Saturday, but it's definitely something we lack. A destroyer isn't always needed but there are certain matches and opponents where it would be a huge advantage (over our current situation) to have the option.

I'm still not convinced that Gerrard is at all convinced by having to play deeper and does he have the discipline in his personality to play as a playmaker, allbeit from a deep position?
It's one of the the things that Pirlo and Alonso have in abundance - discipline with their passing.

If we're to essentially play with a three man midfield, we really need each of the three to have two attributes apiece, rather than a single one.

Talking of Gerrard, he's having painkilling injections, apparently, to be fit to play for England against Germany. It's hardly going to help him last the season for us. He's got nothing to prove with the national side and it's about time he sees how other players in their 30s have extended their careers by knocking playing for the national team on the head.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 20, 2013, 06:10:22 PM
Interesting international games...i note Sakho scored twice for France to save their ass.es and am hoping that gerrard will be fit for everton (i have my doubts though cos of the pain killing injections)...
am assuming sturridge's complete disconnection with the round thing at his feet was due to him thinking about everton as well...
John henry is laying on his own private jet to bring suarez back from uruguay a day early..and i'd imagine after a days rest and sleep that he'll be ok....
thought hendo did pretty well for england...we might moan sometimes about him but he was pretty decent and did some nice interplay..as every other english midfielder kept giving the ball away, hendo did ok
englands complete inability to defend against headers was our undoing and Roy will be having nightmares about that particular weakness let alone the other failings...not our problem though...roll on saturday...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 23, 2013, 12:40:25 PM
.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 23, 2013, 12:44:50 PM
Liverpool:

                     Mignolet,

Flanagan    Agger, Skrtel     Johnson
                       
                       Lucas,
                 Gerrard, Allen,
Henderson,                     Coutinho,
                      Suarez.

Subs: Jones, Toure, Alberto, Moses, Sturridge, Sakho, Sterling.

I presume it's something like that. Can see plenty of subs
and changes in formation happening. Not the most balanced
line-up I've seen. Expect us to score a couple, but we look a
bit soft 2-2 draw!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on November 23, 2013, 02:09:19 PM
if any more proof were needed, Joe Allen is nowhere near good enough for this level.


absolutely shocking miss......a howler.

 
our keeper is superb tho.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on November 23, 2013, 02:11:24 PM
he's being subbed - which is exactly what I would have done after that howler.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on November 23, 2013, 02:16:00 PM
mind you, Moses is the last person I'd be bringing on for the final 25 minutes of a hard fought local derby.


he is IMHO a bit of a lazy basterward.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on November 23, 2013, 02:16:31 PM
feck  grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr rrrrrrrrrrr
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 23, 2013, 02:17:53 PM
absolutely shocking miss......a howler.
Away from home, need to be taking those!

Hopefully it don't spoil the 3 points!

Good to see you back Dude! Place has been less fun
without you!

feck  grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr rrrrrrrrrrr
Hate when that happens  ;D

Someone needs to make a name for themselves now!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on November 23, 2013, 02:26:35 PM
gerrard what in under feck are you about son
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 23, 2013, 02:27:17 PM
feck sake...take lucas off???
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on November 23, 2013, 02:28:32 PM
3-2


that corner all came from the ridiculous give-away that gerrard did in the middle of the park


trying a fecking spiral shot or pass,, who the feck knows what it was (from 60 yards and the ball about 8 feet in the air)....gifts everton the break-away.


and of course the commentators never even mention it
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on November 23, 2013, 02:29:32 PM

Hopefully it don't spoil the 3 points!

Good to see you back Dude! Place has been less fun
without you!


thanks, Ed.


good to see you all again.



Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 23, 2013, 02:32:42 PM
Being torn apart in midfield and so what does Rodgers do? Weaken it by taking Lucas off and putting an unfit sturridge on...idiot stuff...

lol! and as soon as i say that...sturridge scores!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on November 23, 2013, 02:35:32 PM
Being torn apart in midfield and so what does Rodgers do? Weaken it by taking Lucas off and putting an unfit sturridge on...idiot stuff...


agreed, bart


keeganesque in all it's naivety.


the one fecking decent midfielder we have on the pitch - and he takes him off, at the height of a local derby.


reminds me of houllier taking did hamann off against bayer in germany, the white hot heat of a CL quarter final



Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 23, 2013, 02:40:38 PM
Being torn apart in midfield and so what does Rodgers do? Weaken it by taking Lucas off and putting an unfit sturridge on...idiot stuff...

lol! and as soon as i say that...sturridge scores!!
Not sure Rodgers understands the science of going for a win.
He'll say was because of the card but...taking Lucas off away from
home in a derby is dumb. Period.

Basically, the substitution cancelled itself out!

thanks, Ed.
You're welcome!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on November 23, 2013, 02:43:46 PM
if we had a midfield and tactics for when the heat is on, we could win something.

with a smart guy in the dugout, three points were there for the taking today.

but as it turned out, we were lucky to get out of goodison with a point.






Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on November 23, 2013, 04:11:42 PM
we could win something.
FFS Dude name me a manager from the British Isles
in the last 10 years (not Fergie's era or Cloughies) who
has consistently won things.

In general you get these guys, the Redknapps who get a
disproportionate amount of good press, produce sides that
do things like "play attractive" football or are "motivated",
"survive relegation", "punch above their weight", "have cup runs",
"lose finals" etc. and very, very occasionally win a trophy.
Never the league though.

It has been my contention from the start that Rodgers is one of these.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on November 23, 2013, 11:25:09 PM
There's no pleasing the haters. The last 2 pages have convinced me winning no. 19 will bring about another hateful and scornful post from you lot.

Your hero Lucas was responsible for two unnecessary freekicks from which they scored. He's playing so withdrawn it's impossible for the midfield to stay tight and keep the pressure up. We constantly leave a huge hole in the middle for the the opponents to explore because he's so ferkin insecure and only plays for himself.. The sooner he's sacked the better as that's a prerequisite for this dysfunctional midfield to get back on track.

Other than that a disappointing result even though we did one point better than the chavs. Was mighty impressed with young Flanagan's performance. Also thought Henderson had a really good game for a change. Gerrard was back to his hopless self (though the cross that led to the corner that set us up 1-0 was great).

Second year running we're robbed by he ref as there's no doubt in my mind we would've won it with one more man. I always thought Dowd's a fuckin travesty to refereeing.

Mignolet had a great game but in all honesty only had two tricky saves - Barkly's supposed cross and Lukaku's shot from the left side of the area. We created 3 good chances in ET but it wasn't to be. There's many positives to take from this game.

I sense we're about going on a winning run sooner rather than later.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 24, 2013, 07:43:46 AM
There's no pleasing the haters. The last 2 pages have convinced me winning no. 19 will bring about another hateful and scornful post from you lot.


Here we go again...'haters' as in any criticism towards Rodgers, which i might add you do quite a bit yourself...if hating means criticising a manager who at 2-1 up and with suarez in rampant form then proceeds to weaken our midfield with moses coming on and then lucas taken off...we were under the cosh even before allen came off but we were just about containing them, mainly thanks to mignolet...moses is lightweight and good riddance in january...but to then go further and weaken the midfield once again was damn right criminal...rodgers got lucky but i hope to god that he doesn't do that again...
great game though but not for the old heart...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on November 24, 2013, 01:41:24 PM

First Paragraph


There's no pleasing the haters. The last 2 pages have convinced me winning no. 19 will bring about another hateful and scornful post from you lot.


Second Paragraph, and we see the hypocrisy already


Your hero Lucas was responsible for two unnecessary freekicks from which they scored. He's playing so withdrawn it's impossible for the midfield to stay tight and keep the pressure up. We constantly leave a huge hole in the middle for the the opponents to explore because he's so ferkin insecure and only plays for himself.. The sooner he's sacked the better


And, going forward, Mr Positive (the boy) goes on to add some additional nuggets of light and positivity.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on November 24, 2013, 01:43:58 PM
Here we go again...'haters' as in any criticism towards Rodgers, which i might add you do quite a bit yourself...if hating means criticising a manager who at 2-1 up and with suarez in rampant form then proceeds to weaken our midfield with moses coming on and then lucas taken off...we were under the cosh even before allen came off but we were just about containing them, mainly thanks to mignolet...moses is lightweight and good riddance in january...but to then go further and weaken the midfield once again was damn right criminal...rodgers got lucky but i hope to god that he doesn't do that again...
great game though but not for the old heart...


Bart, I thought Everton were there for the taking.  But we played an open game, end to end.....needless thing to do, when one takes the lead.


In playing such an open game, we were (as you say above) lucky to get away with anything from the game.



Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 24, 2013, 09:27:25 PM

Bart, I thought Everton were there for the taking.  But we played an open game, end to end.....needless thing to do, when one takes the lead.

In playing such an open game, we were (as you say above) lucky to get away with anything from the game.

exactly mate...at 2-1 we should have shut up shop....killed the game....but not with our current...we have to go for the ego win...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on November 27, 2013, 09:43:39 AM
I've stayed off since 'that game' as I'd have only added to the reality 'hate'.

I've only one more thing to say, or rather ask - at what point in his tenure does the manager even start to develop a defensive side to our game, in any way, shape or form?

That's me done on that game, as I need to brood a a while longer.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on November 27, 2013, 09:53:58 AM
There's no pleasing the haters. The last 2 pages have convinced me winning no. 19 will bring about another hateful and scornful post from you lot.

Martin, you just let yourself down badly when you come out with stuff like that. You are a far, far better poster than that.

You've made critical observations of the manager on numerous occasions this season, IMHO, all warranted, so allow others to do likewise. If you don't agree then put down a contrary argument rather than just put daft stuff like the above. You're more than capable of constructing a coherent argument and lashing out when anybody else dares to be less than effusive, something you've done regularly this season, is of no credit to you.
I'm not defending anybody, rather just not wanting you to let yourself down, as you're much more capable than that.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on November 29, 2013, 09:58:45 AM
A big game away to Hull on Sunday....we've only won 1 of 6 since august and it's high time we sort out our vulnerable defense and stop leaking stupid goals. Hull will defend and counter and we'd better have our wits about us. Please god play a solid 4-4-2 cos if it aint we're not going to have fun...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on December 01, 2013, 02:11:29 PM
Liverpool:
                  Mignolet,

Flanagan, Toure, Skrtel, Johnson,
                   Lucas

           Gerrard, Henderson

     Sterling                    Moses.
                   Suarez

Subs: Brad Jones, Agger, Alberto, Aspas, Coutinho, Sakho, Allen.

Sturridge out, big blow for those 3 hard fixtures that are coming up.

Optimistic enough for today! Good to see Toure in there
for some no-nonsense defending.

Presumably Hull are going to try focus on giving nothing
away and nicking a goal from big cross from somewhere.

Midfield will have to work their b*llix off though 'cos there'll
be f*ck all tracking on the flanks from Sterling & Moses.

Big performances from Hendo & Lucas and Stevie needs to NOT
give the ball away.

Hopefrully Luis will do the rest.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on December 01, 2013, 04:01:19 PM
Daniel Sturridge ankle injury: Liverpool striker could be out 'for up to eight weeks' says Brendan Rodgers

http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/premier-league/daniel-sturridge-ankle-injury-liverpool-striker-could-be-out-for-up-to-eight-weeks-says-brendan-rodgers-8975853.html (http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/premier-league/daniel-sturridge-ankle-injury-liverpool-striker-could-be-out-for-up-to-eight-weeks-says-brendan-rodgers-8975853.html)

Borini let out on loan, Moses instead of Lakaku, that one keeps biting it on the bottom. I said at the time it was a mistake, that cover was needed for Sturridge's injury susceptibility and now Lakaku has said he would be prepared to leave Chelsea and stay at Everton if they make the CL. The last part may have been hard for us to live up to, but the rest of it?

Us stronger, Everton weaker and an exposed position covered. What was the benefit of Moses over Lakaku?

Again, those clean sheets in the first two games are looking more the exception than the rule. Until we have a defensive side to our game, we'll get nowhere. Passports will be gathering more dust again next year. 

Frustration's not the word.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on December 01, 2013, 05:47:35 PM
Frustration's not the word.
I can think of a few.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 01, 2013, 06:55:22 PM
Terrible performance and result. Two things are obvious: 1) Our squad is too thin. Moses and Sterling ain't good enough to play in a team chasing 4th. 2) As a team we do not possess the confidence to go out and win games like this. Fair enough, Hull had their game of the season just like So'ton in September but we need to make it more difficult for those teams that sit back with 10 men but we just aint got the personnel.

Harsh on Skrtel who had a good game and was arguably our best player alongside Flanagan. Too many players failed the test and I don't see a reason to keep Aspas, Alberto and Sakho out of the team for much longer. Henderson needs a rest. He contributes fork all to be honest apart from his running around like a headless chicken when their keeper has the ball. Sorry but it's the truth.

Nothing less than 6 points in the 2 upcoming games are expected.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 01, 2013, 09:42:34 PM
ho hum...so that's 1 win in 7 away now....almost fulhamesque...at least sturridge proved that he did his all in training...but oops he's out for 2 months...
oh how i am looking forward to the Xmas crunch time with Rodgers tactical acumen...
watch us drop...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on December 01, 2013, 10:33:15 PM
Terrible performance and result. Two things are obvious: 1) Our squad is too thin. Moses and Sterling ain't good enough to play in a team chasing 4th. 2) As a team we do not possess the confidence to go out and win games like this. Fair enough, Hull had their game of the season just like So'ton in September but we need to make it more difficult for those teams that sit back with 10 men but we just aint got the personnel.

Harsh on Skrtel who had a good game and was arguably our best player alongside Flanagan. Too many players failed the test and I don't see a reason to keep Aspas, Alberto and Sakho out of the team for much longer. Henderson needs a rest. He contributes fork all to be honest apart from his running around like a headless chicken when their keeper has the ball. Sorry but it's the truth.

Nothing less than 6 points in the 2 upcoming games are expected.

Martin, I think Southampton have done more than well enough this season for your comment to be unfair to them. As for Hull, two words, Steve Bruce.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 02, 2013, 09:17:26 AM
Tes, I don't mean to take anything away from an impressive and very competent Southampton side but in my honest opinion it remains a fact they haven't put in such a perfect performance before or since their trip to Anfield.

I do believe we have a good chance to take 6 points in the coming week. After that, however, and based on our away record thus far, I fear we'll lose another 3 games between now and the New Year's.

While Skrtel have been brilliant individually, I do believe Rodgers needs to find and stick with a different CB-pair to create a solid back-4, a functional defensive UNIT. My choice at this time would be Sakho and Toure. I know this won't go down well with most of you but I think it's time to quit looking at individual brilliance and instead try to pick our best defense. Johnson is weird, he can be absolutely sublime one game and yesterday he was sluggish and indifferent.

What's disappointing is we're so far from having that Manc-mentality, i.e., "fork this, lets win this game now". I'm a tad despondent today but I do feel that the wheels will start to come off now. Injuries played its part, true, but Rodgers have also struggled to find a formation and a starting XI which haven't help team development and continuity.

On the flipside of things are Flanagan's recent performances, of course. I am mighty impressed by how he's transformed into this mature and intelligent player! (cred to Rodgers as well I guess).
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 02, 2013, 10:23:16 AM
What's disappointing is we're so far from having that Manc-mentality, i.e., "fork this, lets win this game now". I'm a tad despondent today but I do feel that the wheels will start to come off now. Injuries played its part, true, but Rodgers have also struggled to find a formation and a starting XI which haven't help team development and continuity.


the Manc mentality would have seen our boy in the dugout not releasing Sturridge to England, or at ast demanding he only play for 20 minutes.

but why should the feels come off the wagon now.

if anything, we should be pushing on now, to ever greater things after Christmas.

our other top competitors are all involved in travelling the length and breadth of Europe, taking part in draining Champions League and Europa Cup encounters.

Liverool have no such demands.  Nor do we have to worry about the league cup (nor I imagine will we be too worried about the fa cup)

We have a clean and clear calendar.  We should be the freshest top team in England, come February and March onwards.

If we falter, it will not be because of tiredness or injuries.  It will be because of poor tactics and poor recruitment.

In the summer, I said top 8 is what I foresee.  I see nothing to date that makes me change my mind.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on December 02, 2013, 11:09:51 AM
Tes, I don't mean to take anything away from an impressive and very competent Southampton side but in my honest opinion it remains a fact they haven't put in such a perfect performance before or since their trip to Anfield.

I do believe we have a good chance to take 6 points in the coming week. After that, however, and based on our away record thus far, I fear we'll lose another 3 games between now and the New Year's.

While Skrtel have been brilliant individually, I do believe Rodgers needs to find and stick with a different CB-pair to create a solid back-4, a functional defensive UNIT. My choice at this time would be Sakho and Toure. I know this won't go down well with most of you but I think it's time to quit looking at individual brilliance and instead try to pick our best defense. Johnson is weird, he can be absolutely sublime one game and yesterday he was sluggish and indifferent.

What's disappointing is we're so far from having that Manc-mentality, i.e., "fork this, lets win this game now". I'm a tad despondent today but I do feel that the wheels will start to come off now. Injuries played its part, true, but Rodgers have also struggled to find a formation and a starting XI which haven't help team development and continuity.

On the flipside of things are Flanagan's recent performances, of course. I am mighty impressed by how he's transformed into this mature and intelligent player! (cred to Rodgers as well I guess).

I agree with all of that, Martin. Pochettino got his tactics perfect and his team executed them to the letter - a mark of a top coach is to devise the right tactics  and to get your team to respond to you, play for you and execute your tactics perfectly.

I agree with your centre half pairing as that combination gives us more of the sum of qualities you need in a centre half pairing than any other combination. Agger has been a disappointment for me during Rodgers' reign, but I still think the problem lies with the method of play, or rather lack of it, than the personnel involved.

Agger and Skrtel performed well in a unit (not neccessarily individually, especially in Skrtel's case) under both Benitez and Dalglish's caretaker stint (credit to Steve Clarke) so are both capable of being part of an effective defensive unit, if the method of play has a strong defensive component to it.

I think when you look at our Summer transfer dealings and then look at the squad in May and September, you can see that there was a certain haphazard quality to our transfer dealings and that players were moved in, out and around without really addressing the issues and improving the quality of the squad.

Rodgers mentioned squad depth last season, and is now talking about it again, but we've added to the squad depth to a reasonable level in terms of numbers. Most of the players that left in the Summer played little or no part, or as in Downing's case, completely ineffective. But now looking at who and what was added you can that the acquisitions weren't well planned. Although it's nice to add 'for the future', our level of need and size of transfer funds means that we aren't at a stage where we can add for the future. The present first team can be the only priority, and if he chooses to add for the future (Ilori and Alberto) then he takes funds away from strengthening the present first team squad. Therefore he can't now moan about squad depth.

His transfer method this Summer more and more has the look of 'buying because they were available' rather than focus solely on what was required and acquire only those players. If a player(s) isn't available for a position in need of strengthening, then surely given our limited funds (compared to other clubs) you keep hold of that money until a player you need becomes available, rather than spend it on one that is available though not in a position that is a priority, or is 'one for the future'.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 02, 2013, 02:14:49 PM
It's odd isn't it that teams who beat us always have their game of the season against us...it's nowt to do with us having moses and sterling in midfield then...

Only Norwcih, Stoke and Sunderland have conceded more goals than us on our travels.
We've only won once against a team in the top half of the season.

Ain't good enough.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 02, 2013, 04:10:32 PM
I agree with all of that, Martin. Pochettino got his tactics perfect and his team executed them to the letter - a mark of a top coach is to devise the right tactics  and to get your team to respond to you, play for you and execute your tactics perfectly.

I agree with your centre half pairing as that combination gives us more of the sum of qualities you need in a centre half pairing than any other combination. Agger has been a disappointment for me during Rodgers' reign, but I still think the problem lies with the method of play, or rather lack of it, than the personnel involved.

Agger and Skrtel performed well in a unit (not neccessarily individually, especially in Skrtel's case) under both Benitez and Dalglish's caretaker stint (credit to Steve Clarke) so are both capable of being part of an effective defensive unit, if the method of play has a strong defensive component to it.

I think when you look at our Summer transfer dealings and then look at the squad in May and September, you can see that there was a certain haphazard quality to our transfer dealings and that players were moved in, out and around without really addressing the issues and improving the quality of the squad.

Rodgers mentioned squad depth last season, and is now talking about it again, but we've added to the squad depth to a reasonable level in terms of numbers. Most of the players that left in the Summer played little or no part, or as in Downing's case, completely ineffective. But now looking at who and what was added you can that the acquisitions weren't well planned. Although it's nice to add 'for the future', our level of need and size of transfer funds means that we aren't at a stage where we can add for the future. The present first team can be the only priority, and if he chooses to add for the future (Ilori and Alberto) then he takes funds away from strengthening the present first team squad. Therefore he can't now moan about squad depth.

His transfer method this Summer more and more has the look of 'buying because they were available' rather than focus solely on what was required and acquire only those players. If a player(s) isn't available for a position in need of strengthening, then surely given our limited funds (compared to other clubs) you keep hold of that money until a player you need becomes available, rather than spend it on one that is available though not in a position that is a priority, or is 'one for the future'.

He is right to say the squad is too thin tho. He only had 3 windows to evaluate the squad, get rid of deadwood and bring the right players in. I think it's been a mix of good and bad but in comparison to both Hodgson and Dalglish he's been a revelation. Also in some aspects in comparison to Benitez. What pleases me the most is that for the first time since we're looking for the right players. Both Mkthyrian and Da Costa is emerging as the next generation of great players and we were in the running for both. Actually we started the run for Mkthyrian. Willian remains to be seen what he'll turn into.

I'm less impressed by his loan-signings tho and I think he needs to rethink that strategy to be honest. I would assume we both agree on that one.

As for the defence both Agger and Skrtel bring a lot of quality to the team. At the same time they don't add the physical presence that Sakho and Toure does. I really don't care what players he decides to play as long as he sticks with them. This chopping and changing of central defenders as if they were in fact central midfielders must stop or we'll fight it out with the relegated teams who had the worst away record this season.

It will be interesting to see how the team react. If we win on wednesday and satdee and then draw at the Lane while winning at home to Cardiff would take some pressure off going in to the hectic christmas schedule. If we don't get 6 from the next two games any hope of finishing 4th or better is over.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 02, 2013, 04:59:02 PM
It's odd isn't it that teams who beat us always have their game of the season against us...it's nowt to do with us having moses and sterling in midfield then...

Only Norwcih, Stoke and Sunderland have conceded more goals than us on our travels.
We've only won once against a team in the top half of the season.

Ain't good enough.


absolutely, Bart.


I always smell a rat when we are getting rolled over by teams that miraculously are having their game of the season (always against Liverpool).


our midfield is a disaster.  Lucas needed support brought in this summer.  He is having to cope alone in the engine room.


I would love to have seen us acquire that lad Henrikh Mkhitaryan lad (the one that Dortmund nicked off us).  But when we missed out, we had to look for other alternatives.  if none were of sufficient standard, then we had to bring in a temporary stop-gap.  I think we missed out in not bringing in Gareth Barry.  He could have done a job for us this season.


Our boy in the dugout is suggesting (this past week) that Captain Marvel can now be a top class defender for us.  Bluddy ell.    He's got no discipline to work midfield, can you imagine how more desperate he would be in defence.


On our travels we are conceding far too many goals.  We need balance.  Instead we have too many fruity offensive players.  Away from home, you first off have to earn the right to play.  You have to be first to the ball, first to the second ball.


Sadly, I see several players in red who are lazy.



Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 02, 2013, 05:22:25 PM
Either lazy or not up for it mentally. Either way it's not good enough and I think it is in this sense Rodger's is claiming our squad is a tad too thin. Again, November usually treats us badly so there's no reason to get too despondant from this result. Again, if we win wednesdat and saturday we can go to the lane knowing full well a point is a decent result whereas they will desperate for a win helping our cause further.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 03, 2013, 02:11:29 PM
My starting line up tomorrow:


------------------------------Mignolet-----------------------------

Johnson----------Toure--------------Agger---------Flanagan

-------------------------------Lucas--------------------------------

-----------------------Gerrard----------Allen----------------------

--------Aspas-----------------Suarez-----------------Coutinho

I think it's best we go back to what has proven to be our best CB-pairing this season - Toure and Agger. I get the feeling Skrtel is selected based on his individual contribution. However good games he's had I never felt as calm with him in the team as when Toure plays.

Henderson I feel needs a rest. I do not understand all this talk about his progression and I cannot see what it is he's offering us now compared to when he was hugely questioned some 15 months ago.

It is imperative Rodgers starts to nail a starting XI.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 04, 2013, 08:57:14 PM
Can we give Suarez the keys to the city? He's the only one who's saving this season.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 04, 2013, 11:58:00 PM
Can we give Suarez the keys to the city? He's the only one who's saving this season.

That's a bit harsh me thinks. Gerrard and Allen had a good game and also young Flanagan put in another  solid performance. Coutinho is slowly finding his form. It's too soon for Sterling though. Henderson just needs to be benched. Another very very average performance against a very average Norwich.

We played well once we took the lead as we looked nervous in the opening 20. Although it was a good performance by the team, there are flaws in our game a better opponent might have taken advantage of. I will never feel comfortable with Agger and Skrtel as our CB pair. I hope Rodgers realise he needs to change it one last time and then stick with what he chose because Agger and Skrtel will cost us 4th no mater how good they may be individually.

Watched an uninspiring West Ham yesterday. There's every reason to be optimistic we can build on this win on Saturday. Sooner or later Arsenal will run out of easy goals and luck.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 07, 2013, 06:38:08 PM
The Fergie Era is over.

I rejoice from the highest mountain-top.

Fergie, and his fear factor, are gone.

United are now having to compete on the same level playing field as the rest of us.

I suspected that, just like after we lost the last of the old boot-room managers in 1985, we would stumble along for a few years under Kenny, the super-tanker that was Liverpool slowly running aground.  But only after winning two or three more titles.  And that was the case.

I suspected the same post-Fergie - i.e. United would win a couple more titles in the next 4 or 5 years, and then become a normal side once again - when they had to rebuild anew.

But the wheels have quickly came off the United wagon after Fergie left.

They are playing mid-table football.  Whilst I expect them to improve, when their large squad gains traction in the second half of the season - and other sides get tired and have injuries to their smaller squads.

But would it be too much to dream that United might actually struggle to get a Champions League spot?

 :)

Sorry to prattle on in this thread about a non-Liverpool issue.  But post-Fergie is such a wonderful new era to behold.   It is everything that I dreamed it would be.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 07, 2013, 06:47:48 PM
My starting line up tomorrow:


------------------------------Mignolet-----------------------------

Johnson----------Toure--------------Agger---------Flanagan

-------------------------------Lucas--------------------------------

-----------------------Gerrard----------Allen----------------------

--------Aspas-----------------Suarez-----------------Coutinho

I think it's best we go back to what has proven to be our best CB-pairing this season - Toure and Agger. I get the feeling Skrtel is selected based on his individual contribution. However good games he's had I never felt as calm with him in the team as when Toure plays.

Henderson I feel needs a rest. I do not understand all this talk about his progression and I cannot see what it is he's offering us now compared to when he was hugely questioned some 15 months ago.

It is imperative Rodgers starts to nail a starting XI.

Come on you redmen!!!

I had started to reply to this post the afternoon of the Norwich game. But with work here, never got it posted.

I had typed that we were good for 3 or 4 goals at least against Norwich.  Their away form is dire - shipping goals for fun and scoring very few.

Disappointed that we conceded a goal.  But 5 was a good score.

Against the hammers today, we again had a good positive game, scoring for fun.

I would like though, to not concede anything against these lower teams.   Small point. 

If we had bought a decent midfielder this summer past, life would have been very interesting.

I hope we can maintain out form in the final weeks of the year.  Three tough games in the second part of December.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 07, 2013, 09:11:59 PM
It was a so and so game against the Hammers to be brutally honest. Just like against the Canaries we looked a tad anxious and confused until we scored. Once we got the opener we kept going. True they had a good period after their flukey own-goal. But at the end of the day 28-4, 7-1 and 65-35 gives you the bigger picture.

Hats off for Sakho who also was my MOTM. Finally we have a CB who deter situations before they get threatening. What a game he had. Not a pass wrong, not a challenge lost, perfect! If he's not in the team against the Jews I'll ask for Rodgers head!!!

I also thought Allen had a great game and is slowly staring to show his worth. Yes, Lucas is brilliant against the top teams when breaking up play is enough. Against "lesser" teams we need more in the offensive direction and that Allen provides.

My main gripe tho is that even though we were up 2-0 pressing them into desperate moves I hade the feeling a flukey goal could swing things the wrong way. Thankfully it didn't happen tonite but I really think we need to do better with the chances  we create (YOU HEAR THE YOUNG MR STERLING!!!).

White Heart Lane next. Unfortunatly they've escaped with good results the last 2 games but I seriously believe a win is over-due. FFS, Luis has scored as many goals as their team combined.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 08, 2013, 01:19:20 PM
Suarez was brilliant once more..forcing the own goals and generally terrorising the west ham defence...agreed that i though allen showed signs of improvement..and at least he's not let his head hang...he's not the long term solution but if gerrard is out for a couple of games, allen might see this as his last chance saloon...
Coutinho was pretty damn good and we made our own luck by attacking...
big 3 tests in the next 4 games...then hull...need to get our midfield working...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 08, 2013, 09:42:31 PM
Suarez was brilliant once more..forcing the own goals and generally terrorising the west ham defence...agreed that i though allen showed signs of improvement..and at least he's not let his head hang...he's not the long term solution but if gerrard is out for a couple of games, allen might see this as his last chance saloon...
Coutinho was pretty damn good and we made our own luck by attacking...
big 3 tests in the next 4 games...then hull...need to get our midfield working...

Game by game for the remainder of the year. If we can get a good result at the Lane while City trash Arsenal things will starting to look very very interesting.

Was it just me, or did we actually play better in midfield when Gerrard came off yesterday? We'll need him for the big upcoming games though.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 08, 2013, 11:15:42 PM
Was it just me, or did we actually play better in midfield when Gerrard came off yesterday? We'll need him for the big upcoming games though.


we always play better without gerrard

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 08, 2013, 11:18:03 PM
Suarez was brilliant once more..forcing the own goals and generally terrorising the west ham defence...agreed that i though allen showed signs of improvement..and at least he's not let his head hang...he's not the long term solution but if gerrard is out for a couple of games, allen might see this as his last chance saloon...
Coutinho was pretty damn good and we made our own luck by attacking...
big 3 tests in the next 4 games...then hull...need to get our midfield working...


yes, we need suarez and countinho firing in these next very important games.


if we can avoid losing against the top sides, we are half way there.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 10, 2013, 09:00:24 AM

we always play better without gerrard

You're difficult to please. Don't you feel he's been slightly better the last couple of months?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 10, 2013, 09:02:46 AM

yes, we need suarez and countinho firing in these next very important games.


if we can avoid losing against the top sides, we are half way there.

Yeapp, indeed. If offered today I'd bite any hand off offering 5 points from the next four games. If we could get 8 that would mean we beat at least one of our rivals away which would do a world of good going into a slightly easier fixture (on paper) in January and February.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 11, 2013, 05:58:08 PM
Ok so now that Gerrard is out for at least 6 weeks until the end of January, and possibly beyond that...then i would think a replacement class midfielder would be top priority on Jan 1st....otherwise we're gonna blow any chance of Europe let alone the champs league...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 12, 2013, 12:38:14 PM
Ok so now that Gerrard is out for at least 6 weeks until the end of January, and possibly beyond that...then i would think a replacement class midfielder would be top priority on Jan 1st....otherwise we're gonna blow any chance of Europe let alone the champs league...

Cheer up mate! Let us first see how we fare between now and New Year's. We were always gonna struggle for points in those games. Either the wheels comes off, or we lay the foundation for something really really interesting, I'd say.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 12, 2013, 05:48:05 PM
Cheer up mate! Let us first see how we fare between now and New Year's. We were always gonna struggle for points in those games. Either the wheels comes off, or we lay the foundation for something really really interesting, I'd say.

Am i supposed to keep the faith then Martin?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 13, 2013, 09:15:42 AM
Am i supposed to keep the faith then Martin?


 That would be to push it a tad too far, right? ;D Yeah of course, as I said. If we can come away from the upcoming 4 games with 7-8 points we're gonna send a message of intent, indeed. I have a feeling a couple of players might actually rise to the occasion. A lot will depend on how Allen responds. Lucas we know is always good against the bigger teams where breaking up play is enough. Henderson is Henderson, he doesn't offer anything extra regardless of opposition but he does have a physical side to things that may come in handy. The key will be for Rodgers to get the defense bang on. I hear rumours suggesting he's reverting to 5 at the back. That would be a huge mistake in my opinion and would probably see us slated at the Lane. I think he should continue with Skrtel and Sakho. Fair enough we conceded against West Ham, but unlike against Norwich it was more of a mishap than poor defending.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 15, 2013, 04:59:51 PM
You're difficult to please. Don't you feel Gerard's been slightly better the last couple of months?

no, we always play better when he is not in the side.  I know that from watching the team across the years.And also the data says the same.

today is evidence of that.  We are far more fluid and dynamic when Gerrard is absent.  We are quicker to break, and we lose less needless possession in the middle of the park.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 15, 2013, 05:03:06 PM
Yeapp, indeed. If offered today I'd bite any hand off offering 5 points from the next four games. If we could get 8 that would mean we beat at least one of our rivals away which would do a world of good going into a slightly easier fixture (on paper) in January and February.

great first half.

we could be 4 or 5 goals up at half time.

now, with the second half about to start, this is where we need to use our heads.  Spurs will, as the half progresses, have to throw caution to the wind, and push forward.  Then we can really hit them on the break.

if we are smart, we could score loads more goals in this second half........maybe enough to see AVB get his P45.

but our boss needs to be smart.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 15, 2013, 07:01:00 PM
great first half.

we could be 4 or 5 goals up at half time.

now, with the second half about to start, this is where we need to use our heads.  Spurs will, as the half progresses, have to throw caution to the wind, and push forward.  Then we can really hit them on the break.

if we are smart, we could score loads more goals in this second half........maybe enough to see AVB get his P45.

but our boss needs to be smart.

watched the game with a spurs fan who took it well...a really good all round team performance...gerrard was on commentary and must have though uh oh...could have been 7-0 at least....we kept it simple...thought the midfield of lucas, allen and henderson kept it simple and hugely effective...our defense was good as well...i was expecting a draw...and so well pleased...let's keep out concentration on...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 15, 2013, 07:04:36 PM
I STAND CORRECTED. I'VE SPENT THE LAST HOUR EATING HUMBLE PIE. I'M SORRY JORDAN HENDERSON FOR ALL THE HARSH WORDS YOU'RE THE MAN. A leader when we needed it the most. Easily my MOTM!!!

Wow!!! What a game. Surely this is the best since our 4-1 at OT. What a brilliant tactical game from Brendan Rodgers, what a fantastic performance of the red men. I'm in tears. Know it may sound a tad gay but that's how I feel.

We were soooooo fornicating much better against Spurs (AT THEIR GROUND) than were city at the Etihad. I doubt we can keep the energy level this well for the rest of the season but when we do we surely can beat any team. So proud, so happy. It should've been 4-0 at half time really.

I think Luis will stay beyond the summer. He knows pretty damn well this is the real deal. He'll never get this in Madrid.

What a masterstroke by Rodgers to hand him the armband. I really feel our manager deserves credit!

Need to stay focused against Cardiff. No fork up or this brilliant display i wasted.

Come on you redmen!!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 15, 2013, 07:15:29 PM
I STAND CORRECTED. I'VE SPENT THE LAST HOUR EATING HUMBLE PIE. I'M SORRY JORDAN HENDERSON FOR ALL THE HARSH WORDS YOU'RE THE MAN. A leader when we needed it the most. Easily my MOTM!!!

Wow!!! What a game. Surely this is the best since our 4-1 at OT. What a brilliant tactical game from Brendan Rodgers, what a fantastic performance of the red men. I'm in tears. Know it may sound a tad gay but that's how I feel.

We were soooooo fornicating much better against Spurs (AT THEIR GROUND) than were city at the Etihad. I doubt we can keep the energy level this well for the rest of the season but when we do we surely can beat any team. So proud, so happy. It should've been 4-0 at half time really.

I think Luis will stay beyond the summer. He knows pretty damn well this is the real deal. He'll never get this in Madrid.

What a masterstroke by Rodgers to hand him the armband. I really feel our manager deserves credit!

Need to stay focused against Cardiff. No fork up or this brilliant display i wasted.

Come on you redmen!!!!

Steady now, Martin. Keep the faith. :)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on December 15, 2013, 08:48:29 PM
Remember the time when people mocked Rodgers and his 120 page dossier?

Or his purchase of Allen?

Or his touchy-feely nature with the players?

Or his willingness to try to educate people on how he sees the game?

Or how he talked about making a game against Liverpool the longest 90 minutes of the opposition's life?

Remember how they laughed?

Everything Rodgers does has a reason. When it comes together, it looks like today.

Keep calm and trust the manager.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 15, 2013, 08:55:02 PM
Remember the time when people mocked Rodgers and his 120 page dossier?

Or his purchase of Allen?

Or his touchy-feely nature with the players?

Or his willingness to try to educate people on how he sees the game?

Or how he talked about making a game against Liverpool the longest 90 minutes of the opposition's life?

Remember how they laughed?

Everything Rodgers does has a reason. When it comes together, it looks like today.

Keep calm and trust the manager.

At the same time Ed mate, we both know we were right all along. No need to rub it in. Let's move on and stick together. This is the best I felt since we last won the title. I'm not gonna get carried away but for every game now the feeling infested by GH, Rafa, Hodgson and Kenny "we're gonna bottle it" is slowly fading.

I did, however, say at the start of the season we're gonna surprise a lot of people this year.  :P
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 15, 2013, 09:07:30 PM
Remember the time when people mocked Rodgers and his 120 page dossier?

Or his purchase of Allen?

Or his touchy-feely nature with the players?

Or his willingness to try to educate people on how he sees the game?

Or how he talked about making a game against Liverpool the longest 90 minutes of the opposition's life?

Remember how they laughed?

Everything Rodgers does has a reason. When it comes together, it looks like today.

Keep calm and trust the manager.

remember how I always said we were a far better team when Gerrard was not in the side?

remember how some people laughed and ridiculed such a notion?

keep calm and trust the dude.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 15, 2013, 09:11:22 PM
I STAND CORRECTED. I'VE SPENT THE LAST HOUR EATING HUMBLE PIE. I'M SORRY JORDAN HENDERSON FOR ALL THE HARSH WORDS YOU'RE THE MAN. A leader when we needed it the most. Easily my MOTM!!!

Wow!!! What a game. Surely this is the best since our 4-1 at OT. What a brilliant tactical game from Brendan Rodgers, what a fantastic performance of the red men. I'm in tears. Know it may sound a tad gay but that's how I feel.

henderson was superb - and lucas too.

see what happens Martin when we have a strong and disciplined midfield in operation?


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 15, 2013, 09:16:33 PM
watched the game with a spurs fan who took it well...a really good all round team performance...gerrard was on commentary and must have though uh oh...could have been 7-0 at least....we kept it simple...thought the midfield of lucas, allen and henderson kept it simple and hugely effective...our defense was good as well...i was expecting a draw...and so well pleased...let's keep out concentration on...

I was expecting a draw at best too, Bart.

but like you say - a hugely effective midfield.  And that was the difference  IMHO

when do we ever totally boss the middle of the park, like we did today?

rarely, if ever.

I have always maintained that, we would only ever compete for the title again, when gerrard was at the end of his days (and minimally involved) or retired.

without him, we are more fluid, faster to break, more dynamic, more dangerous when in possession, more disciplined, and less predictable.

if we can go to grounds and play like this, we are going to there or there abouts.

but it is early days - this was out first away victory since September.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 16, 2013, 08:05:13 AM
I was expecting a draw at best too, Bart.

but like you say - a hugely effective midfield.  And that was the difference  IMHO

when do we ever totally boss the middle of the park, like we did today?

rarely, if ever.

I have always maintained that, we would only ever compete for the title again, when gerrard was at the end of his days (and minimally involved) or retired.

without him, we are more fluid, faster to break, more dynamic, more dangerous when in possession, more disciplined, and less predictable.

if we can go to grounds and play like this, we are going to there or there abouts.

but it is early days - this was out first away victory since September.

With yesterday's game still vividly clear, I can see your point re. Gerrard better now, Dude. It shall be an interesting festive period as it may give an indication as to the true potentional, or lack thereof, of our midfield. In the long run though, I think we need proper like-for-like replacement for Gerrard. I was, however, hugely impressed by both Henderson and Allen last night.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 16, 2013, 08:07:06 AM
henderson was superb - and lucas too.

see what happens Martin when we have a strong and disciplined midfield in operation?

I do indeed. Question is whether those players can keep that level of focus and energy for another 22 games? If they can, 4th should be in the bag by the end of April. Lets not get carried away here. First we need a good and solid win against Cardiff.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 16, 2013, 04:27:00 PM
I do indeed. Question is whether those players can keep that level of focus and energy for another 22 games? If they can, 4th should be in the bag by the end of April. Lets not get carried away here. First we need a good and solid win against Cardiff.

exactly

we have turned Liverpool into a semi-fortress.

But this was out first away win since September.    If we can keep this level of work-rate up, and this form, we will walk into the top 4 spots, and will be within touching distance of the title itself.

But we have to be honest and admit that Spurs were woeful.   It was clear even from the first 10 minutes that they were badly organised.   We were getting in behind them far far too easily.   But AVB did not have the ability to identify the issue and change things.   

Regarding the title itself.   We do not have the squad depth of other top sides - but on the flipside, we do not have european games to tire our team out this season.

I do worry about City finding this run of form - where they are hammering teams for 6 each week.   That is a concern.

But we can only focus on ourselves and how we perform.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 16, 2013, 04:33:29 PM
With yesterday's game still vividly clear, I can see your point re. Gerrard better now, Dude. It shall be an interesting festive period as it may give an indication as to the true potentional, or lack thereof, of our midfield. In the long run though, I think we need proper like-for-like replacement for Gerrard. I was, however, hugely impressed by both Henderson and Allen last night.

Glad that you see where I am coming from now, Martin re Gerrard.

Without Gerrard, we have always performed better, as a team.

Our midfield yesterday bossed the middle of the park.   Now I cannot get carried away because Spurs were dire yesterday.

I'f we could not get in a top midfielder in the summer (like Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan), then we should have brought in a stop-gap alternative - like a Gary McAllister type that could have done us a ob for a year or two.  I think someone like Gareth Barry would have been a superb piece of temporary business.

And look at how Barry has improved the Everton midfield this season.

It was a mistake, in not bringing him to Anfield.   He could have really pushed us on this season.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on December 16, 2013, 07:17:37 PM
Rumours are that we are getting M'Vila. Plus we are interested in Salah - his reps were at Anfield last week.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 17, 2013, 10:03:46 AM
Rumours are that we are getting M'Vila. Plus we are interested in Salah - his reps were at Anfield last week.

With work and family committments I've been restrained to be so and so updated on the PL only over the last couple of years. What's your take on those two players? Are they ready to step in and make an immidiate impact or will they need a year of gelling?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 17, 2013, 12:17:25 PM
exactly

we have turned Liverpool into a semi-fortress.

But this was out first away win since September.    If we can keep this level of work-rate up, and this form, we will walk into the top 4 spots, and will be within touching distance of the title itself.

But we have to be honest and admit that Spurs were woeful.   It was clear even from the first 10 minutes that they were badly organised.   We were getting in behind them far far too easily.   But AVB did not have the ability to identify the issue and change things.   

Regarding the title itself.   We do not have the squad depth of other top sides - but on the flipside, we do not have european games to tire our team out this season.

I do worry about City finding this run of form - where they are hammering teams for 6 each week.   That is a concern.

But we can only focus on ourselves and how we perform.

We shall see about City. I still don't think they're on the same level they were some 2 years ago where they combined individual quality with composure and urgency. Yes, Spurs were aweful but we should take pride from the fact we made tham look that bad. We managed to pull off the performance of the season when we needed it the most and it isn't beyond me, knock on wood an'all, we can keep this level of focus and energy for a couple of more games. It really is, in my book anyway, extremly important we keep the focus on Cardiff now. If we do that we have 4 wins on the trot meaning one point from the games against City and the Chavs wouldn't be a complete disaster.

Come on you redmen!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 17, 2013, 12:20:24 PM
Glad that you see where I am coming from now, Martin re Gerrard.

Without Gerrard, we have always performed better, as a team.

Our midfield yesterday bossed the middle of the park.   Now I cannot get carried away because Spurs were dire yesterday.

I'f we could not get in a top midfielder in the summer (like Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan), then we should have brought in a stop-gap alternative - like a Gary McAllister type that could have done us a ob for a year or two.  I think someone like Gareth Barry would have been a superb piece of temporary business.

And look at how Barry has improved the Everton midfield this season.

It was a mistake, in not bringing him to Anfield.   He could have really pushed us on this season.

I can see where you come from with that one Dude, but I'm not entirely sure I agree Barry would fit in well with the way Rodgers wants us to play. I agree however we need a quality midfielder to come in as even my Manc mate suggested maybe it's time for Gerrard to accept a role similar to what Scholes had for the lasts 2-3 years of his career. I agree more and more he's holding the development of the team back.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 17, 2013, 12:21:17 PM
With work and family committments I've been restrained to be so and so updated on football in general, besides the PL, over the last couple of years. What's your take on those two players? Are they ready to step in and make an immidiate impact or will they need a year of gelling?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 17, 2013, 02:12:21 PM
We shall see about City. I still don't think they're on the same level they were some 2 years ago where they combined individual quality with composure and urgency. Yes, Spurs were aweful but we should take pride from the fact we made tham look that bad. We managed to pull off the performance of the season when we needed it the most and it isn't beyond me, knock on wood an'all, we can keep this level of focus and energy for a couple of more games. It really is, in my book anyway, extremly important we keep the focus on Cardiff now. If we do that we have 4 wins on the trot meaning one point from the games against City and the Chavs wouldn't be a complete disaster.

Come on you redmen!

yes, very important to beat Cardiff.

shouldn't be that difficult - they have a poor away record.

if we get an early goal, we could score a few.

BUT, if Cardiff get their tactics right and frustrate us, then we will need to change things in order to make a breakthrough.  This is where we often struggle (changing things).

An interesting two weeks ahead - visiting chelsea (26th) and city (29th).


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on December 17, 2013, 06:11:08 PM
With work and family committments I've been restrained to be so and so updated on the PL only over the last couple of years. What's your take on those two players? Are they ready to step in and make an immidiate impact or will they need a year of gelling?

Well M'Vila over the last few years has gone off the boil. He was red hot a few years ago with Real, Barca, Man U and Arsenal interested in him. I'd say its sufficient to say he definitely stagnated by Rennes too long and whilst he moved to Rubin Kazan this year it may have rekindled him to improve.

I'd say M'Vila could make an immediate impact however it depends if he integrates well with the team. His physicality and power plus technique would be obvious assets. Not too sure about his passing game though. He is very good friends with Sakho, so if he did come then he'd at least have a mate to help him.

In regards to Salah this is what someone said about him last year "Salah is a huge talent who's stepped up in the big champions league games.

However, week in week out in the Swiss league he is very very inconsistent. He'll drift out of most games. Speed is his biggest asset, but he severely lacks any end product. Think Aaron Lennon. The times Salah failed to score after his extra bit of speed put him one-on-one with the keeper or even in front of an empty net, I stopped counting. It's nearly become a running joke.

He WILL start putting those chances away eventually. He's only 21, time is on his side."

From his CL appearances this season it seems like he's slightly improved in terms of consistency. I would say he'd be an upgrade on Moses but with a much higher ceiling.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 18, 2013, 07:20:49 AM
yes, very important to beat Cardiff.

shouldn't be that difficult - they have a poor away record.

if we get an early goal, we could score a few.

BUT, if Cardiff get their tactics right and frustrate us, then we will need to change things in order to make a breakthrough.  This is where we often struggle (changing things).

An interesting two weeks ahead - visiting chelsea (26th) and city (29th).

It's getting better tho. Everton away he changed things to see us earn a point. An early goal against Cardiff would set us up nicely. Need to keep the focus and energy level from last weekend.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 20, 2013, 03:44:16 PM
Quote
The striker, who has scored 17 goals in 11 appearances this season, said: "I am delighted to have agreed a new deal with Liverpool and have my future secured for the long term.


"We have some great players and the team is growing and improving all the time. I believe I can achieve the ambitions of winning trophies and playing at the very highest level with Liverpool. My aim is to help get us there as quickly as possible.

"Without doubt the backing I have received from the Liverpool fans has influenced my decision. I am so proud to represent them and go out to do my best for them every time I pull on the shirt. We have a special relationship; they have love for me and in return I love them back. I will always do my best for them and hopefully we can achieve success together."


what fantastic news!

we have a genuinely world class player sign a contract to be at Liverpool until 2018.

top top news.

delighted to see the club move so fast on this issue - and delighted that the player was so keen to sign.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 20, 2013, 04:32:50 PM

what fantastic news!

we have a genuinely world class player sign a contract to be at Liverpool until 2018.

top top news.

delighted to see the club move so fast on this issue - and delighted that the player was so keen to sign.

I couldn't agree more Dude. Absofuckinglutely fantastic news!!!! Well done to Henry, Ayre, Rodgers and the rest for handling this so quickly. Surely the monstrous weekly fee played it's part but I do have a feeling Suarez would also ask for quarantees the club is willing to strengthen the squad. Maybe we have a marquee signing already tied up? I mean a week ago noone saw this one coming. Here's hoping!

Please top this off with a great performance tomorrow!

Come on you redmen!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 20, 2013, 05:58:29 PM
I couldn't agree more Dude. Absofuckinglutely fantastic news!!!! Well done to Henry, Ayre, Rodgers and the rest for handling this so quickly. Surely the monstrous weekly fee played it's part but I do have a feeling Suarez would also ask for quarantees the club is willing to strengthen the squad. Maybe we have a marquee signing already tied up? I mean a week ago noone saw this one coming. Here's hoping!

Please top this off with a great performance tomorrow!

Come on you redmen!

I wonder Martin, if there are clauses in the new contract that let him leave if we do not qualify for the CL, and most likely a fixed buy-out clause (e.g. 100 million quid).

None-the-less, he is ours.  If Madrid do come calling in future summers, they are going to have to pay a king's ransom.

I hope this superb news, with this bumper pay rise, will motivate him to run rampant against Cardiff tomorrow.

I will predict 4-1   (assuming we can get an earlish goal, and force Cardiff to come out of their shells)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on December 20, 2013, 07:46:25 PM
£200k p/w.

There is no release clause in the contract however if we miss out on top 4 then we wouldn't stand in his way if we get a respectable and acceptable offer from an overseas club. Suarez deserves to play in CL.

But like we were fucked over by Real over Mcmanaman and Owen we won't be with Suarez.

Also another important thing is that Rodgers contact only has 18 months left.........So we need to get that sorted in the summer.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 20, 2013, 08:04:54 PM
I wonder Martin, if there are clauses in the new contract that let him leave if we do not qualify for the CL, and most likely a fixed buy-out clause (e.g. 100 million quid).

None-the-less, he is ours.  If Madrid do come calling in future summers, they are going to have to pay a king's ransom.

I hope this superb news, with this bumper pay rise, will motivate him to run rampant against Cardiff tomorrow.

I will predict 4-1   (assuming we can get an earlish goal, and force Cardiff to come out of their shells)

I concur Dude....no Champs league and i think he'll be gone at a premium in the summer...

if our owners are wise then we have to buy a coutinho/sturridge equivalent aka class in january..a top class midfielder at least....

think it might be 2-0 though against cardiff though...i ain't got the faith and belief yet...and thus still wary...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 20, 2013, 11:43:08 PM
I think there's two clauses in the contract - one around 40 or slightly less if we fail 4th, one around 80 if we reach 4th. I am sure Suarez and his representatives have seen the strides this club's taken over the last calender year (if we beat Cardiff tomorrow we've picked up 75 points from the last 38 games). Again, I do hope the promise of significant reinforcements in January besides his 67 % pay rise was part of the parcel that persuaded Suarez to sign.

Early goal yes, I'd hate to see us go in to the last quarter of the game at 0-0 as that may trigger a stressful reaction that can see us commit stupid mistakes. But I feel more and more those days are behind us now and we're in such good form that if we stay focused Cardiff shouldn't be a problem.

And I agree Ed they need to hand Rodgers an extention. But maybe they've reached an agreement in principle he'll get Another 4 years if he takes us to 4th?

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 21, 2013, 11:44:34 AM
I concur Dude....no Champs league and i think he'll be gone at a premium in the summer...

if our owners are wise then we have to buy a coutinho/sturridge equivalent aka class in january..a top class midfielder at least....

think it might be 2-0 though against cardiff though...i ain't got the faith and belief yet...and thus still wary...

yes, and with a tight race for the CL spots, Bart, it would be easy to miss out.   But I hope any clause merely allows the bids to open at that price. 

but we seem to be constantly linked to top forwards - making me sometimes suspect that we are preparing for his departure come the summer.

Suarez, when he arrived, was a world class chance creator (he could create things out of nothing).   But his game has moved up a notch - to the point where he is now also a world class chance taker.  One of his goals against Spurs (the first one) was truly top notch finishing.  He is a workaholic - and is always first to react to situations.  He is a world class reader and predictor of the game.

If we can add to the team (as you say), a top class midfielder (we are linked heavily with that Croatian lad,, the captain of Sevilla) and that Egyptian winger (looks awesome on youtube), then why shouldn't we start believing that a title might be there for the taking. 

But we know a lot more by the end of this Christmas programme of games.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 21, 2013, 01:35:30 PM
Once the goal went in...we've been pretty good...Suarez is bloody awesome..Sterling and Henderson are reborn...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 21, 2013, 01:40:56 PM
awesome.

Suarez is the best player in the world right now.

We might be in the running here for a record we might not care for - last week we cost the Spurs boss his job.   This week, we may well see the Cardiff boss getting his P45 too.

make no mistake, the football we are playing these past couple of weeks, is title winning form. 

without Gerrard, we are totally fluid.  Stunning football.  We may be weakish at the back, but we are simply far too dangerous going forward for nearly every other team.

I have memories of Maradona hauling Napoli to the Italian title in the 80s. 

Suarez is similarly taking Liverpool to amazing heights.

If we can keep this work-rate up for the next 5 months - and keep Suarez fit (and Gerrard unfit), we could well win our first ever premiership title.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 21, 2013, 01:43:22 PM
Once the goal went in...we've been pretty good...Suarez is bloody awesome..Sterling and Henderson are reborn...


agreed, Bart.

and I also thought the new French defender, Sakho, had an excellent half.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 21, 2013, 02:37:39 PM
Great result...personally i think the second half did us good and gave us a big dose of realism...Cardiff much better in the second half but we handled it fairly well..and at least we're not going into the game against City all giddy and getting ahead of ourselves. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 21, 2013, 02:45:25 PM
Great result...personally i think the second half did us good and gave us a big dose of realism...Cardiff much better in the second half but we handled it fairly well..and at least we're not going into the game against City all giddy and getting ahead of ourselves.

we tend to tail off in second halfs.   I suppose we cannot be expected keep up that pace and work-rate for an entire game.

skytrel very lucky not to have given away penalties in this game.

defensively still suspect.  Allen is a weak link (embarrassingly bad at times).   He offers no threat whatsoever to the opponent's goal.

but lots to be very happy about.

if we can play as we can - and keep up that work rate, we are gonna challenge for the title.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 22, 2013, 01:21:36 AM
Have to disagree re. Allen dude. It's obvious, at least to me, he hasn't found his position yet. He's a confidence player and as such it'll not be as smooth and easy as with some other players. I do agree he was the weak link in the midfield today, but Lucas offered little more despite being the most experienced player in the team (bar Johnson?).

We did, as Bart pointed out, take the foot off the pedal in the second half. Nothing wrong with that but I was a tad nervous after their goal they'd get another. If that had happened, it was debatable whether we'd won it. That feeling leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

Sakho had another blinder. What a defender we got!!! (I honestly can't believe he wasn't awarded a free-kick). Henderson again rose to the occasion and was behind all our goals - long may his form continue.

Coutinho is struggling - let there be no doubt about it. He's trying and trying but almost always gets it wrong. That was one of the positives of the game as he will get it right sooner rather than later.

Suarez is Suarez, no doubt the best player in the world at this moment. No doubt whatsoever. Him setting up Sterling for the second shows what strides he's made duruing his time with us - it makes him such a complete player when he plays for the team!  :)

Johnson looks jaded and completely out of sorts. Disappointed to see young Flanagan make room for Kelly when it should've been Johnson but I guess his experience was the outwheighin factor.

City away up. I was told they won quite against the run of play at Craven Cottage. I have a feeling we could upset a few people at their place. Here's hoping we don't crumble under the pressure of being top of the table.

Come on you redmen!!!

 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 22, 2013, 07:55:02 AM
Allen can probably be a useful squad player...i thought at times yesterday he was overrun but in some other parts he was ok...his header at 5ft 8 surrounded by 6ft giants at least showed a hunger to improve...out of the midfield yesterday though i would imagine his position is the most under threat...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 22, 2013, 03:54:20 PM
yes, Allen has a small frame, and is not a defensive midfielder.......he is supposed to be an attacking type - to offer some threat.   But across his career, he has never scored goals.  He averages 1 or 2 per season - which is nowhere good enough at this level.   When you win leagues, you have midfielders like terry mcdermott, jimmy case, ray kennedy, etc weighing in with goals.     

the miss against everton summed it up.  He had a clear chance to put us two goals clear, and most likely a certain three points.   And he misses a sitter.   Costly miss.

Suarez is dragging this team along. 

I hate to see Sterling or Countinho shoot - I prefer to see them let Suarez do the shooting.  Tho Suarez is so dynamic, he always mops up anything that transpires from his colleagues spurned efforts anyway.

Sakho was superb yesterday.   At only 23 years of age, he could be a key player for Liverpool in the years ahead.

Interesting to see what happens in defence now, with Agger back.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 22, 2013, 04:00:10 PM
City up next.

Going by form, City should thump us - 4-1, or 5-2, etc.

City WILL score goals (and we will concede).

Our best form of defence, is most definitely attack. 

If we escape with a high scoring draw, I would grab it.......perhaps 3-3 or 4-4.   But heck, wouldn;t it be nice to win 4-3 or 5-4.

I hope we don't get throttled.  But to stand any chance, we have to attack them, with Suarez running them ragged.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 23, 2013, 12:09:23 AM
City up next.

Going by form, City should thump us - 4-1, or 5-2, etc.

City WILL score goals (and we will concede).

Our best form of defence, is most definitely attack. 

If we escape with a high scoring draw, I would grab it.......perhaps 3-3 or 4-4.   But heck, wouldn;t it be nice to win 4-3 or 5-4.

I hope we don't get throttled.  But to stand any chance, we have to attack them, with Suarez running them ragged.

Last year we outplayed them both home and away and the only reason we didn't do the double on them was stupid mistakes from Skrtel and Reina respectively. I would deffo agree with you Dude going there with a defensive mindset would be suicidal. Me too would take a draw if offered. Seeing as all the other top teams got hugely trashed even a single-goal defeat, based on an otherwise solid display, would send some sort of mini statement. In any case, we couldn't go into this game in better form so here's hoping for a good performance.

Come on you redmen!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on December 23, 2013, 03:08:13 PM
yes, Allen has a small frame, and is not a defensive midfielder.......he is supposed to be an attacking type - to offer some threat.   But across his career, he has never scored goals.  He averages 1 or 2 per season - which is nowhere good enough at this level.   When you win leagues, you have midfielders like terry mcdermott, jimmy case, ray kennedy, etc weighing in with goals.     

the miss against everton summed it up.  He had a clear chance to put us two goals clear, and most likely a certain three points.   And he misses a sitter.   Costly miss.

Suarez is dragging this team along. 

I hate to see Sterling or Countinho shoot - I prefer to see them let Suarez do the shooting.  Tho Suarez is so dynamic, he always mops up anything that transpires from his colleagues spurned efforts anyway.

Sakho was superb yesterday.   At only 23 years of age, he could be a key player for Liverpool in the years ahead.

Interesting to see what happens in defence now, with Agger back.
Allen's a cog Dude & i prefer the idea
of a useful cog than Stevie upsetting
the balance (particularly away from home).

I agree Luis is on a roll, the likes of which
is rarely, if ever seen in the league & top
of the table is due to him. Outside of that,
Henderson's the key for me at the moment, The
goal against Spurs was lethal - the timing,
just before half-time, away from home. Haven't
seen that type of goal from us in ages.

His understanding with luis has also moved to
a different level, as evidenced by the Cardiff game.

Regards Sterling (need better end product
with crosses from him) & coutinho, it
doesn't last unless they weigh in &
start scoring important goals. So I don't mind
them shooting.

If it aint broke, the lad Sakho seems to me the
type of physical presence we need at the back (
plus he's comfortable with the ball at his feet).
I'm noting, he's quick to come across to cover
with a crunching tackle when the wing back is up
the field & Lucas slots neatly in to provide cover
in the centre. A very simple & effective piece of
the defensive structure.

Anyway, early days yet, can't complain top of the
table but any talk of the title seems premature &
forgets that our goal in a season without European
football was to get back in, CL would be a fantastic
bonus.

We haven't seen this team win knife-edge, pressure
games yet (Spurs turned into a farce), so there's
no evidence yet that we're capable of going toe to
toe with the more experienced sides like City, Chelsea
and Arsenal in the latter stages of the season.

We'll need the brutality of Sakho, Lucas & Henderson
to eake out ugly wins if the goals dry up for there to
be any chance of us disturbing the natural order of
things.

But hey, top of league, feels good!  ;D

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Juan on December 23, 2013, 10:03:46 PM
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers deserves our praise

A year of achievement has changed the Northern Irishman's image from grandiose, David Brent figure of mockery to a man of principle and substance

By Henry Winter

8:44PM GMT 23 Dec 2013

Rewind a year and Brendan Rodgers endured some belittling for his “new age” management, his aphorisms seeing him depicted as the David Brent of the dugout. Not now. People now see the substance to Rodgers’ style, his subtle and successful man management of Luis Suárez, his expert coaching of Jordan Henderson, his belief in youth seen in Jon Flanagan’s prominence and the exhilarating nature of Liverpool’s football. It is time to reappraise Rodgers and praise him.

Sayings that most annoyed listeners elicit a different reaction now that Rodgers’ managerial principles manifest themselves fully in players pushing for significant honours. When Rodgers remarked that he “started coaching for one reason and that was to make a difference for people, not just as footballers but as human beings’’ there were a few gasps.

It sounded rather grandiose from a coach whose main achievement had been only a promotion with Swansea City. Now it makes sense, capturing Rodgers’ ability to mould characters as well as players. He has turned Suárez from a toxic asset into a valued commodity respected even by rival fans.
Liverpool’s No 7 may transgress again but all around have noted the Uruguayan’s maturing, his desire to channel that edgy hunger properly. Through explanation and encouragement, Rodgers assists that change.
Quietly, Rodgers also challenges Suárez to become part of English footballing history for the right reasons, for breaking goalscoring records, not codes of conduct.


When Rodgers observed that “we play with 11 men while other teams play with 10 men and a goalkeeper” it sounded arrogant. Now those words encapsulate his footballing philosophy, a way of playing in keeping with Liverpool’s pass-and-move tradition, and bringing the best out of Suárez.
It is not all Suárez by the way. During Suárez’s suspension, Daniel Sturridge was voted Premier League Player of the Month for August while Rodgers scooped the managerial award. Liverpool currently deliver without the injured Sturridge and Steven Gerrard. Rodgers simply tweaks his team or brings in well-prepared understudies to maintain the momentum. They know what he wants. “Brendan has a brand; he’ll pass,’’ says Burnley’s Sean Dyche, who worked with Rodgers at Watford and admires his strength of footballing beliefs.
A careful plan is being put into operation at Anfield. Rodgers buys those such as Philippe Coutinho who suit his obsession with possession, inflicting on opponents “death by football”. There were doubts whether the slight Brazilian would cope with the physicality of the Premier League. Coutinho certainly looks at home now. Rodgers chose well. Joe Allen begins to justify the £15 million outlay.

Liverpool’s manager has made mistakes, and concerns remain over Fabio Borini and Iago Aspas while Nuri Sahin’s loan did not work out. Rodgers is fortunate to have good owners in John W Henry and Tom Werner.
As well as the flowing football, Rodgers’ players perform with a strong work ethic, the type instilled in him by his late father, who had him painting and decorating at a young age. “My father would work from dawn to dusk to ensure his young family had everything and I think you can see his philosophies in my team,’’ Rodgers said during his time at Swansea.

He sees the club as a family with everyone standing together. The team spirit engendered by Rodgers was demonstrated when Suárez squared the ball for Raheem Sterling to score against Cardiff City and the youngster immediately running to thank him.

Still those early maxims of Rodgers need revisiting. Bemusement followed his pronouncement that “the problem with being a manager is it’s like trying to build an aircraft while it’s flying’’. Now that Rodgers’ ideas are becoming reality on the pitch such statements will soon be staples in coach-education departments.
Rodgers is different. He is no Big Sam. He quotes Latin proverbs to his players. Addressing the media, Rodger is one of the most tactile managers I have met. He has always been quotable but now people appreciate the content properly. Discussing how he likes to train players, Rodgers once said: “You train dogs. I like to educate players.” Cue some hilarity. But he does educate players. Ask Henderson.
When Rodgers arrived at Melwood last year, the new manager sat down with the struggling midfielder. “We had conversations on what I needed to do to improve my game,’’ recalls Henderson. They also talked about whether the player should try a new start at Fulham. “I don’t want to go,’’ Henderson told Rodgers. “I want to fight for my place.’’ Impressed, Rodgers replied that if Henderson listened, learnt and improved, he would give him a chance. “He helped me to do better, always talking to me,’’ adds Henderson, now an integral part of the team.

Rodgers has put behind him that unfortunate documentary Being: Liverpool. He came over slightly oddly in the programme, leading to the Brent comparison. It is hard now to imagine Rodgers writing names in three envelopes of the players he felt “will let us down this year”.
Management is not a game show. Still only 40, Rodgers has acquired some gravitas. Now that his team are the talk of the town, Rodgers sounds increasingly like a spokesman for a managerial generation, addressing major issues. His words carry increasing weight. He berates the negative coaching that can inhibit English talent, questioning the point of St George’s Park if the philosophy isn’t right, demanding the removal of “fear” in nurturing youngsters.

Rodgers spoke powerfully in support of Malky Mackay, a former colleague at Watford. He spoke for all in football when calling to account Cardiff’s owner, Vincent Tan, as “a business guy who knows absolutely nothing about football”. Football Association and Premier League leaders would earn respect if they echoed Rodgers’ principled stance. He was embraced by an emotional, grateful Mackay after Saturday’s game at Anfield. Mackay will not forget that backing.

Rodgers is rising up to become a heavyweight of the managerial game. Harry Redknapp so respects him that he was going to ask Rodgers to help with the coaching at Euro 2012 if Redknapp got the England job. Jose Mourinho lauds his protégé. Rodgers himself is generous with advice, helping Dyche out last month.
Watford fans may disagree, following his sudden departure from Vicarage Road, but Rodgers is a man of principle. When Swansea defeated his old Reading side in the Championship play-off at Wembley in 2011, Rodgers was quick to console Brian McDermott and Sir John Madejski. Rodgers’ handling of this year’s Hillsborough developments and tributes further showed his substance as a man. Liverpool are in very good hands.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on December 23, 2013, 10:27:56 PM
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers deserves our praise

A year of achievement has changed the Northern Irishman's image from grandiose, David Brent figure of mockery to a man of principle and substance
I'm not having a go but, all seems premature to me.

Toffees are 2 points behind us in Martinez's 1st
season.

Next we'll be reading articles about the resurgence
of Merseyside as the powerhouse of football & the
arising of sleeping giants.

All makes wonderful copy for journos and editors and
plays into the hands of fans (myself included) who are
hoping for it to happen.

I'm taking a more measured approach, but can't deny
that I'm delighted we're top of the table at Christmas.
Long old season though, at best we're a surprise package
whether we have the legs for a full campaign is a different
matter.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 25, 2013, 08:45:08 PM
Last year we outplayed them both home and away and the only reason we didn't do the double on them was stupid mistakes from Skrtel and Reina respectively. I would deffo agree with you Dude going there with a defensive mindset would be suicidal. Me too would take a draw if offered. Seeing as all the other top teams got hugely trashed even a single-goal defeat, based on an otherwise solid display, would send some sort of mini statement. In any case, we couldn't go into this game in better form so here's hoping for a good performance.

Come on you redmen!

as we said previously, Martin, a draw at City and another draw at Chelsea, would be very good results.

we are running into a very fine run of form.   But admittedly, this is also the case at the other main teams as well.

but what we are doing (unlike everyone else, apart from City) is knocking over the middle and lower table teams for 4's and 5's. 

Suarez is dragging us to the pinnacle.  If he can stay fit, and in form, and we can keep up this work-rate, then we will have as good a chance a anyone, come the business end of the season.

Suarez's enthusiasm and work-rate is infectious. 

Fingers crossed for boxing day.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 25, 2013, 09:14:31 PM
Allen's a cog Dude & i prefer the idea
of a useful cog than Stevie upsetting
the balance (particularly away from home).

I agree Luis is on a roll, the likes of which
is rarely, if ever seen in the league & top
of the table is due to him. Outside of that,
Henderson's the key for me at the moment, The
goal against Spurs was lethal - the timing,
just before half-time, away from home. Haven't
seen that type of goal from us in ages.

agreed, Ed.  Sakho is looking a superb piece of business.

Henderson has been working hard and looking impressive.   Like most of the side, I think he has found Suarez's industry and outlook, infectious.

Allen is never going to threaten the opposition's goal.......and for a non-defensive midfielder, that is a problem.

That type of player has to be able to weigh in with at least half a dozen goals each season.

Overall, we are playing out of our skins.  Yes, it is the most competitive title (and top 4) hunt in years.   Isn't it great to not have Fergie around!   It levels the playing field.  I can almost feel the entire football industry outside Old Trafford, breathing a huge sigh of relief this season.   The game is enjoyable once more.

Everton and Newcastle will fall away.  You cannot keep relying on turning over other teams by a single goal every week.

If we can share the points with the big teams (City, Chelsea, etc), then we have as much chance of winning the title as anyone.  Because, when it comes to turning over the mid and low level sides, only City and ourselves are doing that for fun.

But we have to keep Suarez fit, and our work-rate up.  But I see a tremendous team spirit....a tremendous unity of purpose.   I think, though they dare not mention it publicly,  our lads see the biggest opportunity of their lives in front of them.    Why not dream of things that could be. 

Some people see things as they are, and say why? But I dream things that are not, and I say, why not?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 25, 2013, 09:17:54 PM
happy festive period to one and all.

and may all your hopes and dreams for the new year come true.

*raising my glass of red wine, to you all, and your good health*
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 26, 2013, 07:53:38 AM
happy festive period to one and all.

and may all your hopes and dreams for the new year come true.

*raising my glass of red wine, to you all, and your good health*

Aye Dude! Merry Xmas indeed!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on December 26, 2013, 05:09:41 PM
agreed, Ed.  Sakho is looking a superb piece of business.

Good to see Brendan doing his scouting in the right places - this forum.  :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on December 26, 2013, 05:10:18 PM
happy festive period to one and all.

and may all your hopes and dreams for the new year come true.

*raising my glass of red wine, to you all, and your good health*

Hear, hear
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on December 26, 2013, 05:28:43 PM
Good to see a decent, sustained response to the Hull debacle, but we step up to a whole different level with the next two aways.

One positive thing is that of Arsenal, Mancs, City, Spurs, Chelsea and Everton, all except the Mancs have to visit Anfield.

A couple of draws against City and Chelsea would see our momentum continue and the New Year off to a solid start. Whilst our defending still keeps the Cardiac units in employment, Rodgers seems to have instilled a more reinforced type of confidence and we are at least able to score, even we're not not firing perfectly.

Now he needs to repeat last January's window, not the Summer's and reinforce our midfield. I'm now prepared to say leave the left back position alone as Flannagan has played well enough (out of position) to deserve a chance to claim a starting role until the season's end.

Maybe if a quality right back were to be available then it has to be considered but otherwise a small tweak, rather than a mini overhaul, and steady as she goes, and the good ship Jolly Rodgers could be be docking in a few European ports from August.

I think that Rodgers is starting to grow into the role more and is beginning to understand that talk is meaningless, and the only way to convince anybody is by proving it with action. Nice backing of Malky McKay before the Cardiff game. It sounded sincere, considered and heartfelt, rather than a spot of LMA back slapping.

As for (Steamin') Steve Clarke being sacked, there won't be another decision by any owner/chairman, in any league, for the rest of the season, that will top that for sheer stupidity. Come home Steve and tighten up the defensive aspect of our game. Rodgers and Clarke could an interesting combination, though I doubt we'll ever get to see it.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 26, 2013, 06:06:40 PM
one up after 24 mins.

and we could have been 2 up - the linesman gave Sterling offside  a few mins earlier, when he was clean through (the lad was 2 or 3 yards onside)

as I was about to hit SEND, City equalise.   Barstewards.

I will take 3-3

We have to take the game to City - or else we will get rolled over.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 26, 2013, 06:12:54 PM
A couple of draws against City and Chelsea would see our momentum continue and the New Year off to a solid start. Whilst our defending still keeps the Cardiac units in employment, Rodgers seems to have instilled a more reinforced type of confidence and we are at least able to score, even we're not not firing perfectly.

I think that Rodgers is starting to grow into the role more and is beginning to understand that talk is meaningless, and the only way to convince anybody is by proving it with action. Nice backing of Malky McKay before the Cardiff game. It sounded sincere, considered and heartfelt, rather than a spot of LMA back slapping.

As for (Steamin') Steve Clarke being sacked, there won't be another decision by any owner/chairman, in any league, for the rest of the season, that will top that for sheer stupidity. Come home Steve and tighten up the defensive aspect of our game. Rodgers and Clarke could an interesting combination, though I doubt we'll ever get to see it.

great to see you back, Tes.

yes, sacking Clarke was madness.  The only plonker madder is that Tan guy, owner of Cardiff. 

As for Liverpool, nostradamus dude strikes again.  I quote, from ancient manuscripts - "only when Captain Marvel has a much reduced role, will Liverpool once more threaten to win the title"
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on December 26, 2013, 06:40:58 PM
great to see you back, Tes.

yes, sacking Clarke was madness.  The only plonker madder is that Tan guy, owner of Cardiff. 

As for Liverpool, nostradamus dude strikes again.  I quote, from ancient manuscripts - "only when Captain Marvel has a much reduced role, will Liverpool once more threaten to win the title"

Cheers Dude, it's good to be able to find the time.

As far back as Rafa's first season, or even maybe earlier, we've seen many games where if Gerrard wasn't bang in form, he could be a hindrance, other times he's seen us through almost single handedly, and as you say, many times we've looked a more balance team, with greater contributions from a greater array of players emerging from Gerrard's shadow and into their own spotlight.

Priority one this Summer is his replacement(s), so a proper transition can be made and hopefully his contribution can be more selective and in turn effective, especially if he doesn't call it a day with Hodgeson's rabble after the Summer.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 26, 2013, 07:33:40 PM
City win 2-1

but we look the business.

if our chances had fallen to Suarez, and the linesman knew the rules of the game, and our keeper hadn't thrown their goal into our net, we'd have won by a couple of goals.

impressive Liverpool.  We could/should have won.

we need to believe and develop mental courage, that we can win games like this.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 26, 2013, 07:36:54 PM
Cheers Dude, it's good to be able to find the time.

As far back as Rafa's first season, or even maybe earlier, we've seen many games where if Gerrard wasn't bang in form, he could be a hindrance, other times he's seen us through almost single handedly, and as you say, many times we've looked a more balance team, with greater contributions from a greater array of players emerging from Gerrard's shadow and into their own spotlight.

Priority one this Summer is his replacement(s), so a proper transition can be made and hopefully his contribution can be more selective and in turn effective, especially if he doesn't call it a day with Hodgeson's rabble after the Summer.


life after Gerrard will be good.  It was the same as life after Owen.

as the saying goes - the graveyards are full of indispensable people.

the Sevilla lad (Ratkick, Ratmik, or whatever it is) looks impressive.




Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 26, 2013, 07:55:23 PM
We played some pretty good stuff...just wasn't our day..bad mistakes from the linesmen and Mignolet cost us...overall though i didnt see much wrong and if we can further strengthen in january...we can get top 4 at least...
we went for the game and overall we were easily as good as city...
hard luck lads...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 27, 2013, 02:57:45 PM
Very proud of the team and the manager. No other team has come close to a performance like that at the Etihad. For the second top-game running we had decisive calls from the ref against us. Never thought Mason was up for games like this. Should've been Marriner, Webb or Clattenburg.

Althought there were a lot of positives to take from this game there were quite a few negatives.

* Skrtel really really has to learn and start doing things a bit more streetwise. Incredibly easy goal for Kompany while, at the same time, you have to be mighty impressed by his physical strength to keep Skrtel at arms length to head home.

* Coutinho continues to struggle and waste good chances. It's troublesome as it starts to cost us Points. We really need a competitor for his position to relieve him of responsibilities.

* Johnson haven't looked like his old self after that injury. In fact he's becoming almost a liability. I do fear some of it have to do with complacency as a consequense of no competition for his place.

On the flip side of things I actually think Cissokho had quite a good game after a nervous start. Sakho really deserves the nick-name "monster". Another brilliant game. Henderson was quite in the early stages of the game but got better and better. Allen, on the other hand, had a quite game when we needed him the most. Sterling I don't trust - he's just got to score a sitter like that. Inexcusable to say the least. Good in other parts but that counts for little if you don't turn up when it matters the most. 

I reckon Rodgers' blasting of the referees is an attempt at creating a "the world against us" feeling ahead of Sunday's game.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 27, 2013, 06:08:52 PM
I agree with most of that, Martin.

But like Bart, and you, I think we were excellent, and but for a stupid linesman, and our keeper chucking the ball into our net, and the chances falling to A N Other (as opposed to King Suarez), we would have won this game at a canter - maybe by 2 or 3 clear goals.

we were very unlucky not to at least have taken a point.

what I would be focussing on - is developing our players'mentality - to ensure that they can cope when playing the big teams.   City, last night, were there for the taking.   Maybe one or two players, with more maturity under their belt, will be better equipped in times to come.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 27, 2013, 06:39:50 PM
a league cup final appearance two years ago, and then winning the Championship title last season, and then consolidating their premiership status this season, was clearly not good enough for Mister Tan, owner of Cardiff.

the Malayasian owner is clearly a hard taskmaster.....a man who is very difficult to please.

I need to rewatch the Bridge on the River Kwai. 



Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on December 29, 2013, 02:59:10 AM
    Everton v Southampton 13:30
    Newcastle v Arsenal 13:30
    Chelsea v Liverpool 16:00
    Tottenham v Stoke 16:00

Interesting fixture list tomorrow.

If we lose and Newcastle, Everton & Spurs win it'll
begin to look awful congested up there with Utd.
also only 2 points behind.

Think we probably should be targetting a draw. I'd
almost celebrate a draw as a win.

I have the feeling a loss could affect our momentum at a key
stage of the season, as we may find it difficult to replicate some
of those emphatic wins in the New Year while other teams (United,
Chelsea) begin to hit their stride.

I think if we can grind out some results over the next month & stay
in the top 4, then hopefully pick things up again when the top sides
turn to Europe again.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 29, 2013, 03:52:31 PM
Think we probably should be targetting a draw. I'd
almost celebrate a draw as a win.

I have the feeling a loss could affect our momentum at a key
stage of the season, as we may find it difficult to replicate some
of those emphatic wins in the New Year while other teams (United,
Chelsea) begin to hit their stride.

yes, will be tough today.

with everyone around us winning this weekend, we cannot afford to lose today.

but we may well do. 

Chelsea have won their 5 of their last 6 home games, and drew the other one. 

And away, over the last 6 games, we have won only one game, drawn two, and lost three.

the writing is on the wall.

Suarez has to have a blinder today, if we are going to take something from the game.  But to be honest, Suarez rarely performs against the bigger teams.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 29, 2013, 04:29:00 PM
1-1


chelsea bossing the middle


we are dangerous going forward
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 29, 2013, 04:37:18 PM
2 - 1 to Chelsea


If we do not get our finger out in the middle of the park, we could take a pasting here.


Allen is way way way out of his depth.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on December 29, 2013, 06:13:02 PM
In reflection perhaps these 2 games will have done us some good. We're badly in need of personnel and if we don't add some class in January then we have no chance of top 4 whatsover...we weren't as good as we were against City but in part we played ok.
Sakho injured now...we need good additions and no more aspas' of this world...
on paper city and chelsea were the toughest games we had to play and we only just lost out in both...lots to be positive about but we seriously need to strengthen....
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 29, 2013, 06:33:26 PM
very true, Bart.

one thing that concerns me, is our very limited tactics. 

We were a goal up in both games, and yet both chelsea and city scored twice before half-time, to win both games.   

no matter the scenario, we seem to always play end-to-end football.   

do top teams play such open end-to-end football when they are ahead?   Keegan's teams do, but beyond him, does anyone else have such flawed tactics.

we were over-run in the middle on many occasions.  And that left our defence very vulnerable. 

I thought of the 4 goals that we have conceded these past few days, possibly 2 or maybe 3 of them, were very poor.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 29, 2013, 06:37:56 PM
and I would like to ask the FA for their OBSERVATIONS about today's game.

again, some very poor officiating.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 29, 2013, 06:46:44 PM
Very harsh result again. Chelsea probably played their best half this season in the first. Nevertheless, both their goals were rather fortunate. Especially since that twit Eto'o should've walked after one minute. Again, the refereeing is in favor with Chelsea as we had two ironcast penalty calls turned down.

But as both of you said, we're extremly thin and I think Rodgers sent a signal to Henry et.al. we need serious strengthening ASAP by playing young Smith.

Gutted to see both Allen and Sakho injured just as they started to find their feet. Coutinho is totally out of sorts at this moment and looks very very low on confidence. Lucas had another good game against a top side and Henderson really really carried the team for periods of the game. My MOTM was Luis Suarez tiredless effort to work for the team.

I tend to agree we were narrowly beaten by the two toughest opponents in 72 hours. I am afraid they cost too much energy we won't be up for it against Hull on Wednesday. It's also sickening to see the rest of the team around us win without displaying any sort of quality - and no, to me that's no sign of strength. Gutted to the bone!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on December 29, 2013, 07:25:28 PM
If Gary Neville says its a stone wall penalty, when we are involved, then you know its a stone wall penalty. Webb was looking right at it too. fornicating Refs have fucked us twice in a week.

Still overall 5th in the league with the top 7/8 so close together points wise there is still all to play for.

Apart from Man U and Soton we have played all the top sides away from home and we're not yet into 2014 and we are in a great position considering that point.

Chelsea were better than us in the first half and the 2nd half was 50-50 imo. But yet again the refs fucked us. Mind you we'd have probably missed the pen knowing our luck, but still those decisions went against us.

Just looking at the two benches tells you all you need to know in terms of squad depth. We don't have any really. Smith had a tough time when he came on but it was his debut in a tough environment so he deserves some slack.

We definitely need two new fullbacks. Johnson is starting to become a liability and we've had more changes in the left back position so it needs addressing.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 30, 2013, 05:44:14 PM
Again, my take on Smith is the only reason Rodgers brought him on was to send a signal to the owners "this is what I have to work with whilst fighting it out for top 4". There were other and more logical options to that substitution. Shrewd move indeed by Rodgers.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 30, 2013, 05:59:45 PM
Dead worried ahead of Sunday. A majority of the team looked totally exhausted last 20 yesterday - no wonders though. A lot of the players seems to suffer from minor knocks including Suarez and Henderson. I have a feeling we won't get 3 against Hull. Please cheer me up, will ya?

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on December 30, 2013, 06:12:45 PM
Dead worried ahead of Sunday.


Please cheer me up, will ya?

Liverpool v Hull, at Anfield

Liverpool have won 6 out of 6 of their last home league games.

In their last 6 away games, Hull have lost 4 and drawn 2.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on December 30, 2013, 06:13:22 PM
Dead worried ahead of Sunday. A majority of the team looked totally exhausted last 20 yesterday - no wonders though. A lot of the players seems to suffer from minor knocks including Suarez and Henderson. I have a feeling we won't get 3 against Hull. Please cheer me up, will ya?

Come on you redmen!!!

Sunday?! You mean Thursday!!! We have Oldham on Sunday!! Although that will cause you more worry seeing as its 2 days less to recover!

I too think the Hull game will be difficult. Bruce will play 10 men behind the ball and they'll be difficult to break down plus they'll be ultra confident because A) they beat us a few weeks ago and B) they won 6-0 on Saturday. So yeah think it will be hard. I'll settle for a 1-0 or 2-1 win.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on December 30, 2013, 06:29:32 PM
Sunday?! You mean Thursday!!! We have Oldham on Sunday!! Although that will cause you more worry seeing as its 2 days less to recover!

I too think the Hull game will be difficult. Bruce will play 10 men behind the ball and they'll be difficult to break down plus they'll be ultra confident because A) they beat us a few weeks ago and B) they won 6-0 on Saturday. So yeah think it will be hard. I'll settle for a 1-0 or 2-1 win.

Thursday???!!! Surely you mean Wednesday! :D That's my sentiments exactly.

Cheers though, Dude for the positive remarks.  Another positive is that it's unlikely Suarez will go goalless for 3 consecutive game. On the downside of things we're forced to break up our central defence yet again.

Hopefully it's our turn to grind out a result.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 01, 2014, 02:33:10 PM
Cheers though, Dude for the positive remarks.  Another positive is that it's unlikely Suarez will go goalless for 3 consecutive game. On the downside of things we're forced to break up our central defence yet again.

yes Martin, we need Suarez back firing on all cylinders.

Bruce always enjoys getting one over on us (being a big United and Fergie servant).

And Hull are not the type this season,to be turned over by 3 or 4 goals.

But a one or two goal victory will be fine.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 03, 2014, 01:52:11 PM
Indeed a very very good result. I totally understands where Rodgers comes from when he say it was the best win of the season. It really was written on the wall we'd drop points in this game but we cruised surprisingly easy apart from the first 20 where we looked tired and immobile. As per usual praise has to go to Suarez who played through pain to help us stay within touching distance.

I also feel Henderson is becoming better and better by each game. Here's me having some of that humble pie. Coutinho looked his best on this side of the injury but need to work seriously on his finishing at it will become costly if he doesn't improve. Sterling really isn't good enough. It's just too soon for him. He may well come good but as for now our top 4 aspirations will be seriously dented if he stays in the team. Moses was a mistake but at least he makes up the numbers. Aspas too a flop. I actually feel sorry for the lad as you can see how nervous and low on confidence he is. But that's really up to him to come around. Johnson looked like realising he need to sort himself out and had a pretty good display.

I was particularly happy to see the team regain the energy after 20-25 and use it to kill the game off. We next face Stoke away with some much needed rest, provided Rodgers doesn't feel he need to make up for last year's debacle against Oldham and field a strong side. Here's hoping we'll stay focused and composed against Stoke!

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 05, 2014, 06:46:07 PM
I also feel Henderson is becoming better and better by each game. Here's me having some of that humble pie. Coutinho looked his best on this side of the injury but need to work seriously on his finishing at it will become costly if he doesn't improve. Sterling really isn't good enough. It's just too soon for him. He may well come good but as for now our top 4 aspirations will be seriously dented if he stays in the team. Moses was a mistake but at least he makes up the numbers. Aspas too a flop. I actually feel sorry for the lad as you can see how nervous and low on confidence he is.

aspas scored today - indeed could have had another 2 minutes later (hit the post).

I hope that gives the lad some confidence.

agreed on Moses.   From the start of the season, I see Moses as either extremely lazy (not closing down players), or else he has not had proper pre-season training.  Not up to scratch.

Good result today.

And...

And Man United lose at home......5th loss at Old Trafford this season - and it is only January.  One can only imagine the repercussions should they finish outside the top 4.

Fergie has left the building - and taken the fear factor with him.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 06, 2014, 01:25:43 PM
The only game I haven't seen this season so can only go on what's been said on websites and blogs. Apparently Alberto and Moses didn't take their chances. As for Aspas I gather he didn't to much of an impact other than the goal. But it would probably be a tad naive to ask for it all to fall into place in a single game. Hopefully he can build on that as we need him. It worries me Rodgers can't trust our fringeplayers seeing as we play Burton or Bournemouth just 2 or 3 days before the derby at Anfield.

Agger picking up another injury means we'll have to revert to arguably our worst CB-combo - Skrtel and Toure.

A very tricky game at Britannia Stadium up next. Looks like Hughes has finally got his side to work. Important fixture this as both Everton and Tottenham have relatively easy fixtures at home. At the same time I wonder how much longer Everton will continue to fly? City face Newcastle away while the league's form team no.1, Chelsea, face a slightly easier away game against Hull at the KC Stadium. I don't Think all teams around us, either above or below, will get maximum points so it's hugely important we do.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 07, 2014, 06:06:44 PM
This Sterling hype really really really is a sign we haven't moved forward that much after all (for crying out loud he cost us at least a point at the Etihad). Jesus Christ, his end product has been awful over the entire campaign and so has his contribution in open play - extremly predictable and easy to close down. Am I the only one to have this thoughts?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 10, 2014, 09:48:25 AM
Very tricky game at Britannia Stadium this weeken. As you probably know we lost our three last visits. But that was against an ultra-physical-defensive Tony Pulis-side at a time when the club was still in mayhem.

They will probably come out firing on all cylinders so it'll be important to stay focused and positionally sound the first 20-25 minutes. Hopefully Sturrigde is fit enough to play some part in the game as we're gonna need at least 3 goals to win this.

Come on you redmen!!!

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 12, 2014, 02:14:49 PM
we have to win today to have any ambitions of staying in the title hunt.

Stoke's home record is fair enough (typically mid-table form). 

Our recent form, away from home, has been very poor - admittedly three of those away games have been against Arsenal, Chelsea and City.

I fear a 1-1 draw.  But I am going to go with us scrapping a 2-1 victory.



Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 12, 2014, 05:10:02 PM
when you are feckin 2 up, you go on and win games.

but as per usual, we go ahead and then give the game away.

rodgers keeps on doing this stupid thing.

the guy has no tactics.  FFS
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 12, 2014, 07:33:13 PM
insane game....we were better...but it has to be said the dolphins and unicorns were on our side...thank feck for suarez...and sturridge was quite...brilliant..
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 12, 2014, 08:39:42 PM
gotta be said though it's been 30 years since we left stoke with 3 points...mad game and not good for my heart...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 12, 2014, 08:44:25 PM
insane game....we were better...but it has to be said the dolphins and unicorns were on our side...thank feck for suarez...and sturridge was quite...brilliant..

You could argue we were fortunate on our first and slightly so on the penalty. But as a whole we were miles better and for long periods we played a very controlled game. I was particularly impressed by the second half where we came out showing a will to win. In previous years we didn't win those game. Rather we bemoaned our bad luck. We won very deservedly and as for the Dudes suggestion Rodgers doesn't have a clue tactically I think you better rethink that after the game winning changes he made when he brought on Sturridge in a 4-4-2 set up. It's obvious we're going places with Rodgers as manager. He's taken us from mid-table mediocrity to challenging for the title in one and a half season. Not even Rafa managed that.

Cred to Sterling who had his best game in a red shirt. Both Henderson and Coutinho was surprisingly anonymous but worked hard for the team in a very controlled display. We made 4 mistakes and they scored 3. Toure and Skrtel will Always be our weakest CB-pairing and it's just a matter of time before Skrtel will cost us dearly with his constant shirt-pulling.

Villa up next at home. Winnable if focus and preparations is right.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 12, 2014, 10:04:04 PM
it's Keeganesque football.

And whilst I think that that type of football is an important part of a title-winning team's arsenal, it has to be only one part of it.

when you go ahead in a game, you can slightly tweak your tactics.   So far, this has been beyond Rodgers.

it's the same old thing, every time.....we go ahead in the first half - only to let the other team equalise or go ahead before half time.

if you have any ambition at winning titles or cups, you can't continue with such limited tactics.

And I thought Gerrard was truly awful today.  I lost count of the times he gave needless possession away - and he cost us a goal before half time, when he messed up deep in our half.  I do not like to see him in our central midfield, and I am terrified when I see him drop back and play deep.  He is an accident waiting to happen.

Overall, we got out of jail.  And three points are three points.   

We are still in the hunt.  And we have all those difficult away games out of the way (apart from a trip to Old Trafford).

We need to keep winning, because if you look at the table, there is a clear risk of three teams now breaking away (arsenal, city and chelsea).

I foresee us playing the same way til May.  So best keep the blood pressure and heart tablets close at hand.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 13, 2014, 07:28:15 AM
I sincerely hope we're in the market for a decent midfielder or two this january...cos gerrard kept giving the ball away yesterday and henderson went back into his more withdrawn mood...we had a large chunk of luck yesterday along with pieces of class from suarez and sturridge...to give a 2-0 lead away so easily was criminal and the weakness of our midfield with gerrard at its centre made Stoke look way better than they actually are...up until this point they had scored less than a goal a game...and yet we let them ship in three...if rodgers can adjust such matters...and not rely on fate (if gerrard is injured and the like) then we have a serious opportunity to get top 4...not taking that advantage would be criminal...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 13, 2014, 09:42:46 AM
it's Keeganesque football.

And whilst I think that that type of football is an important part of a title-winning team's arsenal, it has to be only one part of it.

when you go ahead in a game, you can slightly tweak your tactics.   So far, this has been beyond Rodgers.

it's the same old thing, every time.....we go ahead in the first half - only to let the other team equalise or go ahead before half time.

if you have any ambition at winning titles or cups, you can't continue with such limited tactics.

And I thought Gerrard was truly awful today.  I lost count of the times he gave needless possession away - and he cost us a goal before half time, when he messed up deep in our half.  I do not like to see him in our central midfield, and I am terrified when I see him drop back and play deep.  He is an accident waiting to happen.

Overall, we got out of jail.  And three points are three points.   

We are still in the hunt.  And we have all those difficult away games out of the way (apart from a trip to Old Trafford).

We need to keep winning, because if you look at the table, there is a clear risk of three teams now breaking away (arsenal, city and chelsea).

I foresee us playing the same way til May.  So best keep the blood pressure and heart tablets close at hand.

Agree to disagree on several points mate. Again, I think your argument Rodgers lack tactical knowledge/ability wears thin. Yesterday his decision to change the formation to 4-4-2 with the introduction of Sturridge proved a masterstroke.

I also think one has to be fair and aknowledge the fact we controlled the game completely for over 70 minutes playing a type of football that allowed "in-game resting". That's something new to our game and, dare I say, a direct result of the team's improving tactical competence.

Not for a second is it fair to say we got out of jail. I don't think their first is anything to bitch about. Crouch took that goal brilliantly. If anything Johnson was out of position forcing Suarez to track back subsecuently allowing Aurnotovic way way too much time to deliver the cross. The other two goals came from sloppy and erratic play courtesy of Henderson and Gerrard. But over all we were a class apart and won very very deservedly unlike Chelsea and City.

I would agree with you on Gerrard though mate. I lost count on the number of times he gave the ball away in dangerous positions and seemingly unnecessary at that. Alonso used to do it once in a while but instantly shaped up and made amends. Gerrard just continued to do the same mistake over and over again.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 13, 2014, 09:44:37 AM
I sincerely hope we're in the market for a decent midfielder or two this january...cos gerrard kept giving the ball away yesterday and henderson went back into his more withdrawn mood...we had a large chunk of luck yesterday along with pieces of class from suarez and sturridge...to give a 2-0 lead away so easily was criminal and the weakness of our midfield with gerrard at its centre made Stoke look way better than they actually are...up until this point they had scored less than a goal a game...and yet we let them ship in three...if rodgers can adjust such matters...and not rely on fate (if gerrard is injured and the like) then we have a serious opportunity to get top 4...not taking that advantage would be criminal...

Agree completely with that bart mate. However, a couple of our goals may have been a tad fortunate. But as a whole we played them off the park for over 70 minutes. You could also argue they were very fortunate to get three goals from 4 mistakes.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Gurdeep on January 14, 2014, 07:39:31 AM
Going up 2 nil and shipping 2 goals within 10 minutes before half time....absolutely criminal! 
It's evident that we desperately need some quality in midfield.  The introduction of Gerrard in the midfield I felt made us weaker and I don't buy into the theory that he can play in this new role in front of the back four.  Another player who I feel is not at the same level as he was a few seasons ago was our former player of the year, Lucas Leiva.  I've watched every televised game this season and he's imho no where near the level he was playing at a couple of season ago.  We're crying out for that Mascherano type of player!

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 14, 2014, 09:46:03 AM
Going up 2 nil and shipping 2 goals within 10 minutes before half time....absolutely criminal! 
It's evident that we desperately need some quality in midfield.  The introduction of Gerrard in the midfield I felt made us weaker and I don't buy into the theory that he can play in this new role in front of the back four.  Another player who I feel is not at the same level as he was a few seasons ago was our former player of the year, Lucas Leiva.  I've watched every televised game this season and he's imho no where near the level he was playing at a couple of season ago.  We're crying out for that Mascherano type of player!

I agree it was disappointing to see us ship that lead. But I imagine you would agree with me that in previous years that would've seen us draw the game at best. Instead we scored the goals needed to beat a strong hometeam who beat Chelsea just a few weeks ago and took points off City. I agree with your general point though, we certainly could do with a Diamé or Dembele in the center of the park.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on January 14, 2014, 06:10:35 PM
Diame and Dembele are both crap.

Whilst I agree whole heartedly that we need improvement in that area what we need is to buy a player that will take us up a level in that area not just sustain us at the level we are at. If that makes any sense!!

Diame is no better than Lucas nor Gerrard and Dembele is no better than Henderson, especially in midfield.

I do agree we need a physical and powerful midfielder though. But the players I have in mind are the likes of Gonalons, Both Benders Lars and Sven, Gustavo, Reges, Marchisio, Moutinho, Cabaye, Strootman. The best in the world are Pogba, Vidal, Martinez, Bastian.S, Ramires, Yaya Toure, Busquets. I.e. unattainable.

That first batch of players would only be available to us if we have CL football. I mean we are heavily linked with M'Vila and he had that class once before and whether he can reach those levels again are another matter and could be worth a punt at the right price. But we need to upgrade and for me the likes of Diame and Dembele are not upgrades but sideways moves at best.

I personally am interested in seeing the dynamic of Gerrard further back and Lucas and Henderson further forward as it allows us to press further forward. But the huge drawback is the lack of tactical discipline from Gerrard and I don't think he can do it by himself but with a partner. Rodgers though does see Gerrard playing that role more often.


I think we need to improve both full back positions in the summer though. Flanagan is currently our best full back and that is saying something but we need improvement in those areas as with good quality full backs it allows our pressing game to be more effective. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 15, 2014, 06:42:30 AM
Too much CM for me that, Ed mate to be perfectly honest. I almost stopped reading where you said Diamé and Dembele are crap. They may not be worldbeaters but since when are we a club attracting worldbeaters?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on January 15, 2014, 02:05:45 PM
Diame is definitely crap. I watch a lot of West Ham games and he is next to useless. Most West Ham fans won't cry one iota if he leaves.

Dembele for me is more of an AM than a proper CM so its no good for me plus he is slow and lacks tactical awareness - which is why he is better further upfield.

But as I said sideways move at best with those two.

With CL football we can attract those in that batch I stated. One of the Benders is at Leverkusen, Reges at Porto, Gonalons at Lyon, Moutinho at Monaco, Cabaye at Newcastle and Strootman at Roma. Gustavo is unwanted at Bayern. If we were to get CL football are you telling me we couldn't attract those players from those clubs?

Pogba, Vidal, Martinez, Bastian.S, Ramires, Yaya Toure, Busquets are world beaters and I never said we can attract them as they are all unattainable to us even with CL football.

However with CL football and with Brendan at the club we can attract a hell of a lot better than Diame and Dembele.

P.s. I'd actually prefer Rossiter and Lussey in our midfield than Diame. That is how shed Diame is nowadays.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 18, 2014, 03:29:51 PM
I am concerned to see Gerrard back in the side.

And extremely concerned to see talk of him being played deeper, in front of our defence.

We will need to score 5 or 6 goals per game, to counter the number that he gifts to the opposition.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 18, 2014, 05:56:49 PM
I am concerned to see Gerrard back in the side.

And extremely concerned to see talk of him being played deeper, in front of our defence.

We will need to score 5 or 6 goals per game, to counter the number that he gifts to the opposition.

All Villa since the first 30 seconds...and with no lucas villa are running riot....ffs...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 18, 2014, 06:08:39 PM
FFS!!!! A complete shambles...nothing in midfield and i wonder why? Mignolet was pretty woeful as well...I hope John Henry takes note and strengthens our midfield..
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 19, 2014, 01:21:04 AM
Disappointing result and performance. Suarez and Coutinho was not to be recognised, nor was anything really. Although we clawed back goalwise we never dominated the game. Surely this was a lesson for Rodgers he shouldn't chance his formation to accomodate Sturridge. If it is about the team, then let the team be. Fair enough we did better at home aginst Villa than did Arsenal but we now run the risk of going into the derby behind the Bitters. Suarez a huge huge disappointment.

Sterling my MOTM.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 19, 2014, 01:05:13 PM
Pretty obvious that Gerrard in no way can play the holding midfielder role. Blindingly obvious that our midfield was pathetic yesterday and that was because there was no lucas...there's talking about having to fit sturridge in but at the moment we're a much better team without gerrard...we were lucky against stoke and were found out against villa...gerrard may be able to slot the penalties in...but he was awful in that role yesterday...
rodgers needs to stop that nonsense and also a day before he again said we can win the league...ffs
 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 19, 2014, 05:03:09 PM
Pretty obvious that Gerrard in no way can play the holding midfielder role. Blindingly obvious that our midfield was pathetic yesterday and that was because there was no lucas...there's talking about having to fit sturridge in but at the moment we're a much better team without gerrard...we were lucky against stoke and were found out against villa...gerrard may be able to slot the penalties in...but he was awful in that role yesterday...
rodgers needs to stop that nonsense and also a day before he again said we can win the league...ffs


exactly.

rodgers claimed that our midfield played well against Stoke - and that the point we gained against Villa yesterday, was on the back of a good second half performance, and could be an important one.

his claims that Gerrard can play the holding role, are the biggest pile of moronic balderdash that I have encountered in a long time.

with gerrard, we are top 8 material (maybe top 6 with a bit of luck).   Without Gerrard, we can build a proper midfield and prosper.

Gerrard should not have walked straight back into the team. 

And if I managed the club, he would never play in the middle of the park. 

He would play wide right - or not at all.


BTW - England are in for a horrid time this summer in Brazil, if Gerrard is in midfield.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 19, 2014, 06:30:38 PM
as I feared last weekend, it now looks like the top three are breaking away - arsenal, city and chelsea.

everton, liverpool and spurs are in a second tier battle for that 4th CL spot.

man utd will need to get their finger out, if they hope to join the battle.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 19, 2014, 06:48:59 PM
It was disappointing to drop points of course but it's by no means a disaster if we can get full return from our 3 next games. I'm sure Rodgers learnt his lesson last nite and will improve. We are now entering a period where the top 7 teams will face a much more difficult fixture  and I still think there's room for a few surprises along the road to May. United lost which opened up a 6 points gap and maybe it isn't beyond Baggies to snatch a point tomorrow. That would see us go into the derby in 4th place. The next 3 games will decide our season.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 20, 2014, 08:33:13 AM
We have nothing on the right side so i think it's a cracking idea to put gerrard there..he certainly hasn't the discipline for the holding midfielder and it was noticeable that even rodgers didn't put him back there after the break...his only other roll would be behind suarez..but i'm not sure that he's got the legs to do that now...henderson and lucas need to be in the central midfield...with coutinho on the left...
if we persist with gerrard as a defensive midfielder we'll be off the pace for top 4...which would be fairly tragic considering how close we are...
11 days to go before the window shuts...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 20, 2014, 11:08:43 AM
And it  seems in the media like we're finally starting to make a few moves.

I'm more and more with Dude that we're better off without Gerrard. Maybe not altogether but used more sparingly. Problem is Lucas is out for the forseeable future, Coutinho's way way off form and Gerrard is struggling to find his new role.

Part of me is a tad worried the wheels may start to come off in the coming weeks with a long run of bad/not good enough results. In very few games this season I've felt calm even when up 2, whereas when Arsenal, Chelsea or City score you know the probability they'll drop points approach zero. That, to me, is a strong indicator we're far from being the finished article and a reminder finishing 4th would be a truly, truly huge achievement.

Salah, might be good but I think Fernando would come in much handier at this time.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 20, 2014, 04:07:39 PM
We have nothing on the right side so i think it's a cracking idea to put gerrard there..he certainly hasn't the discipline for the holding midfielder and it was noticeable that even rodgers didn't put him back there after the break...his only other roll would be behind suarez..but i'm not sure that he's got the legs to do that now...henderson and lucas need to be in the central midfield...with coutinho on the left...
if we persist with gerrard as a defensive midfielder we'll be off the pace for top 4...which would be fairly tragic considering how close we are...


yes, a tragedy, given the great football we played in late November and early half of December.

it was title-winning type football.    But going by Rodgers words and overall tactics, it seems that, rather than it being by great design or plan, he rather accidentally stumbled upon a decent line-up.

and with gerrard back, top 4 will soon be a distant memory.

but like you say, why not instead play gerrard wide on the right.  The deficiency exists, so fill it with captain marvel.

any small hope of winning the title ended with the Villa result.

the other three teams are now pulling away.

Rodgers made a helluva mistake playing Gerrard in the holding role.  And the Villa boss was tactically smart.  He had two of his players get tight on Gerrard when our man had the ball - forcing him into mistakes and being hurried.  And when Villa had the ball, Gerrard was left alone - because when he does not have the ball, Captain Marvel tends to be a lazy bugger, who doesn't track the opposition back.  Villa were able to counter attack at speed.  The Villa boss was smart.

but as well as being tactically stupid - Rodgers second mistake was taking way too long to change things.

our boss should have seen the issue and changed things after 20 minutes.

by the time he finally reacted, we were two down.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 20, 2014, 05:27:01 PM

Salah, might be good but I think Fernando would come in much handier at this time.

Ideally we need both, there seems to be dithering about Salah and that we can't pay 12 mil for him...with lucas out for awhile and with gerrard not able to fit his DM boots...then i'm not sure how much Fernando might be but if it's around 8 mil then 20 mil for two players who will bolster our crappy midfield will be money well spent...
will make the difference between 4th and 6th...Champions league or the doldrums once more, that is the question...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 20, 2014, 07:33:35 PM
Oh and on a personal note...can we bring steve clarke back and sort our defence out? We've let in 26 goals in 21 games now which is pathetic...Rodgers knows nowt about defence and it could be an interesting double act...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Ed on January 20, 2014, 09:10:06 PM
and with gerrard back, top 4 will soon be a distant memory.
Rafa had some very un-Rafa like things to say about
Stevie in his latest column:

"It was interesting to see him playing in the deeper regista role
in the win against Stoke City, because regular readers of this
column will know why I think he has the qualities to be an influence
there. It is his anticipation, ability to pass long and short with incredible
accuracy and also dictate the tempo. Not many players can do that."


http://www.independent.ie/sport/rafa-benitez-column-liverpool-to-pip-united-to-top-four-29926581.html

Personally, I think Stevie's the best penalty taker in the league now
but would prefer to see him in cameos.

I agree with him on this point though:

"but Liverpool will have one important advantage when January is over.
That is time. They don’t have to play in Europe in the months ahead and
that is a big advantage when the others are distracted by those commitments.
I don’t mean it is not good to be competing and pressing to win in the
Premier League and Europe, too."


Anyway, basically, top 4 is our title & we'll probably need to pull out
all the stops to achieve it.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 21, 2014, 09:30:31 AM
As I've said above. A full return from our upcoming 3 games would set us up nicely for the rest of the season and more or less guarantee a top 4 finish given Rafa's second point, with which I agree.

Other than that I think you're too quick to pass judgement on Rodgers. I mean, we've been injury struck to the extent we could hardly get a proper squad in place for the Chelsea game. We've been forced to chop and change the back-4 constantly over this period, + the results have been truly truly crazy and very much against us. I think there's reason to believe we have a decent chance to get back to the form we had throughout most of December and if so we'll have a great chance to finish 4th which, again, would be a tremendous achievement and final proof Rodgers is the right man to lead this club.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 21, 2014, 08:49:28 PM
http://www.lfconline.com/feat/ed11/lucas_out_for_two_months_822080/index.shtml

lucas out for 2 months...we don't need Salah anymore as we've got enough going forward...we need a replacement for Lucas...and gerrard aint gonna do it...and if we don't get someone suitable thats the end of the top 4...

i read somewhere that we were going to put a bid in for nigel de jong ....but quite why he would want to leave Milan is anyone's guess...would love him but just can't see it...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 21, 2014, 10:05:29 PM
http://www.lfconline.com/feat/ed11/lucas_out_for_two_months_822080/index.shtml (http://www.lfconline.com/feat/ed11/lucas_out_for_two_months_822080/index.shtml)

lucas out for 2 months...we don't need Salah anymore as we've got enough going forward...we need a replacement for Lucas...and gerrard aint gonna do it...and if we don't get someone suitable thats the end of the top 4...

i read somewhere that we were going to put a bid in for nigel de jong ....but quite why he would want to leave Milan is anyone's guess...would love him but just can't see it...


without Lucas, we're fecked.


we're now gonna slide down the table to our natural level.





Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 22, 2014, 11:10:08 AM
You're a man of quick and dramatic conclusions my friend. I don't think we're being penetrated in any way, shape or form at all, because of Lucas' injury. Fair enough it won't help our cause and as such it is a blow to us. But we've overcome injuries to far more important and instrumental players than him this season and managed to cope with it quite well. There's 2 games where his talents will be sorely missed and that's So´ton and ManU away. Against the top teams at home we won't need him as much as we did in the reverse fixtures away. Again, I'm not saying he won't be missed or that his injury doesn't represent a blow, I'm just saying his injury isn't the be all end all you make it out to be regarding our chances to finish in the top 4.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on January 22, 2014, 11:07:15 PM
Lucas said on twitter it's a few weeks not a few months so some slight relief there.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 23, 2014, 06:36:01 AM
So Martin who have we got as cover for Lucas? I don't want to see Gerrard there after that horror show on Saturday, so any suggestions? Have we got any youngsters who can fill his boots?
New reports now that Chelsea are in for Salah, so while we've been dithering for 2 months or so, i wouldn't be at all surprised if we lose out.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 23, 2014, 06:52:35 AM
As I tried to say Bart, unlike you I'm not that sure we'll need cover for Lucas in a majority of the games. Rodgers is the first manager to realise he offers next to nothing in certain games while carrying a priceless tag in other.

And lose out we will as Chelsea has made it their priority to prevent a move for Salah to us. We can't compete with money. I hate them chavs with a passion and wish all of them the worst possible. So fed up with this. The only good thing to take from it is that we're obviously tracking the right players. Totally gutted with money's role in football.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 23, 2014, 06:56:59 AM
As I tried to say Bart, unlike you I'm not that sure we'll need cover for Lucas in a majority of the games. Rodgers is the first manager to realise he offers next to nothing in certain games while carrying a priceless tag in other.

And lose out we will as Chelsea has made it their priority to prevent a move for Salah to us. We can't compete with money. I hate them chavs with a passion and wish all of them the worst possible. So fed up with this. The only good thing to take from it is that we're obviously tracking the right players. Totally gutted with money's role in football.

But if we'd got Salah signed, sealed and delivered on the 1st of January, then Chelsea wouldn't have had the chance..we're dithering around like we did with Mkhitaryan and it's all looking very predictable...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 23, 2014, 10:04:19 AM
But if we'd got Salah signed, sealed and delivered on the 1st of January, then Chelsea wouldn't have had the chance..we're dithering around like we did with Mkhitaryan and it's all looking very predictable...

That would be the obvious take on it. I have a feeling though, things are a bit more complicated than that lest you'd be assuming the club's recruitment team are sitting back rolling their thumbs just for the sake of it. Of that I think we can agree that's not the case.

It's easy to pass judgement on the club but the fact of the matter is it has to deal with and balance two factors that goes a long way to restrain our freedom of action. Firstly, there's the financial situation where our budget is clearly limited in comparison with a number of clubs. Secondly, and as a result, our manouevering space within the FFP-framework adds to the fact there's a huge gap between what the club ideally would want to do, and what it in fact is capable of doing.

Again, it's obvious we have a very very good scouting team. This is the 4th player we've spotted other European/PL-clubs finally wants to add to their respective squads. Even if the Chavs gets this one it will be the last in a long time as it no doubt will change how other clubs go about their business in the transfer market. I wold also say, once we're in the CL we'll hit an upward spiral of sorts.  :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 23, 2014, 04:09:49 PM
it's obvious we have a very very good scouting team.

what experience of bringing success to any previous club do Dave Fallows and Barry Hunter have?

I suggest that Bart, Tes and myself could do as well, if not better.

In my opinion, top modern-day scouts are a rare and protected species.

Today, it is all about databases and, if you are a top club, you recruit from other top teams (thus we often recruit from Barca or Chelsea)....in doing that, you know you are getting a technical player of a certain level.

if we had genuine top scouts, we'd be finding young kevin keegans, or ian rushes......or the european equivalent.

Instead, we are just picking through the same list of available players (who are unhappy, or near the end of their contracts, or their club needs money quickly) as the rest of the clubs.   It's database driven.  There are very few Graham Carrs around (the scout at Newcastle). 

oh for a modern day Geoff Twentyman.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 23, 2014, 04:13:25 PM
But if we'd got Salah signed, sealed and delivered on the 1st of January, then Chelsea wouldn't have had the chance..we're dithering around like we did with Mkhitaryan and it's all looking very predictable...

exactly.

it's the teasing (of what we might have had) that does for me.

Mkhitaryan would have been a helluva signing.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on January 23, 2014, 05:41:40 PM
"Since this one is basically as good as over for us, there is no harm in pointing out some details about this transfer to let the you know how much we fucked up during this transfer as my source is as close to the player as you can get.

First of all, let me tell you that I'm not a fan of the club overpaying by any stretch, I hate it when clubs like City or Chelsea pay over the top fees for the likes of Lescott or Shaun Wright Phillips cause that means the market is inflated. However, just because the market is inflated doesn't mean that there are some players out there who are worth a good chunk of money to be paid for.

There is also a fine line between being too smart and being too smart for your own good, I didn't exactly followed the ins & outs of our other negotiation models with the other targets in the summer but there is a pattern developing of us missing out on first targets like Dempsey, Mkhitaryan, Costa, Willian and bar a miracle now, Salah. It is hard to properly judge the transfer committee plus I feel for the scouts who have their hard work cut out for when a club comes in and gets the players we have been following for months.

Now we were following Salah closely since October, we sent a lot of scouts to Basel games, began negotiating in November and his agent met with Ayre in the West Ham game to discuss terms with them. We had a verbal agreement with Basel regarding everything and we quickly became Salah's favoured destination as he saw us as a club where he can grow, get a lot of 1st team action and become a world class player. I don't know what happened between Salah's agent and Ayre, but the impression that the club got from that meeting was that, in reality there is no way Salah is going to leave for anyone bar Liverpool and/or there are no real offers on the table for Basel bar us. When we got to sending Basel our opening offer, it was a laughable offer well below what was verbally agreed upon, think of Wenger 40 million plus one pound bid, this was even more laughable.

Basel raised their as a result of being pissed off. We tried to up our offer but it was again well below what was previously agreed upon and Basel didn't want to lower their demands as they sensed that we were wasting their time. They even began courting other clubs that Salah is available. Milan & Inter thought that Basel's original demands were too high for them, Leverkusen, Wolfsburg & Monchengladbach were ready to pay but Salah didn't want to go to Germany. Basel tried to claim that Atletico was interested but it was a bluff by all accounts, however a host of other clubs wanted to be kept updated on the deal one of whom was Chelsea.

Since we saw that Salah didn't want to go to the Bundesliga and with no other club offering Basel any offer, we assumed he'll stay there till the summer and we can re-open negotiations, but Newcastle offered Basel a good first offer and now him coming to us in the summer was in doubt if Basel & Newcastle agree a fee. That's why we came back with a much more improved offer, almost what was verbally agreed upon before the window even started. Salah's personal demands were also agreed previously so there was no problems with him & his agent, just us agreeing some minor details with Basel. Chelsea, who were updated on the deal, at last asked about his availability and Basel asked about 8 million more than what we were offering (they tried to fleece Chelsea and I'm sorry last night I got confused cause I misunderstood my source as telling me Chelsea offered 8 million more, which isn't true) but Chelsea really offered a couple of million more than us but with a lot of add ons that favour Basel heavily, we didn't even hesitate and backed off, not even matching their deal.

The only thing stopping Salah from going to Chelsea is that he doesn't want to go there, full stop. Him & his advisers believe he won't get much playing time there and if it is in his hands, it is better to stay at Basel and wait till the summer to get his move, however Basel want to sell & get their money now and begin scouting their next target (who will also be from Egypt). There is a third club who asked for Salah's availability (my source won't tell me cause Salah doesn't want this to go public as he prefers to join that third club over Chelsea and doesn't want a repeat of the fiasco surrounding his negotiations with Liverpool) but like I said barring a miracle, most probably he won't be our player come the end of the window.

What makes this irritating is that we wasted three months of scouting him, weeks of negotiations and then tried to lowball Basel and looked stupid at the end when we fell flat on our arses. Board wise, there have to be some questions asked about how good we are at negotiating some deals."

Is what a close source to Salah said on another forum.

No surprise though as we all know Ian Ayre is totally inept.

Only saving grace in Salah going to Chelsea is that he isn't a left back or a central midfielder otherwise I'd be fuming with anger. Right now I'm just fuming  :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 23, 2014, 06:55:11 PM
So now we know why Johnson has been pretty poor this season...just like Joe Allen last season. WTF is the point of playing a half fit player when we could give Martin Kelly a run or another youngster? And as it's been known for a while why haven't prepared for Johnson's rest period. The mind boggles.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zzsFHkdpMSE
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 23, 2014, 07:12:25 PM
So we've been mincing about for 3 months or so and Chelsea take a day. Class stuff.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2544224/Chelsea-rival-Liverpool-Basle-forward-Mohamed-Salah.html

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 23, 2014, 07:24:03 PM
So we've been mincing about for 3 months or so and Chelsea take a day. Class stuff.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2544224/Chelsea-rival-Liverpool-Basle-forward-Mohamed-Salah.html

You base that on what? Ed's post? The one without any reference? The one that I could write myself in less than an hour if I had the urge? As you said, class stuff!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 23, 2014, 07:38:11 PM
On another note. Fair enough, we've conceded a few more goals than any of us would've liked. At the same time and in fairness it ain't that bad. We've conceded 28 from 22 games. That's 9 more than current leaders Arsenal (outscoring them by 10), 3 more than current runner's up City. My point, however, is that if we'd been as fortunate as Arsenal's been with injuries I Think we'd been much better off both goals-conceded and pointswise. Here goes.

Toure started off brilliantly only to get injured after 3-4 games. Same with Glen Johnson who really stood out in the opening 4 games before being sidelined for 6 weeks. Up on Johnson's return it was evident Enrique suffered from knee problems and would need surgery. Add to that Agger's usual in's and out's of the team. 4 games is all young Flanagan was allowed until injury struck him too. And then Sakho, the best defensive signing I've seen since Hyppiä gets sidelined for 6-7 games. And now Johnson's out "indefinitely".

I'm not making excuses but it would've been interesting to know how our games would've developed and how many goals we would've conceded if we would've been able to play an in-form and gelled back 4 of Johnson, Skrtel/Agger, Sakho, Enrique?

Just to put things into perspective.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 23, 2014, 07:40:42 PM
You base that on what? Ed's post? The one without any reference? The one that I could write myself in less than an hour if I had the urge? As you said, class stuff!

Er, no Martin...believe it or not i can form an opinion without Edwards help. We've been linked with Salah since at least November if not before and the first fecking time we heard of Chelsea's involvement was yesterday...aka my summation of 3 months for us (november, december and january) and a day for Chelski...
is that ok with you?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 23, 2014, 08:06:33 PM
Er, no Martin...believe it or not i can form an opinion without Edwards help. We've been linked with Salah since at least November if not before and the first fecking time we heard of Chelsea's involvement was yesterday...aka my summation of 3 months for us (november, december and january) and a day for Chelski...
is that ok with you?

That's perfectly fine with me mate, as long as you aknowledge there's other factors involved such as Basel and Salah himself as you make it sound as if both club and player was actually paying us to take him onboard. Unless, of course, you take that text Ed posted at face value. I'm totally pissed off but if Chelsea really, really wanted the player they wouldn't wait until January 22nd to act. It's more a case of acting like a big stack bully IMHO. We need to lift ourselves and move on and realise for the first time in decades we're spotting the right players. Sooner or later we'll get them!  :)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 24, 2014, 08:22:21 AM
Hmmm Salah is a bullet dodged...the last thing we want is this nonsense at our club...

Chelsea's £11million move for Egypt winger Mohamad Salah is mired in controversy after it emerged he has twice refused to shake hands with Israeli players. Owner Roman Abramovich, chairman Bruce Buck and director Eugene Tenenbaum are all Jewish and will be concerned by Salah’s actions. The Basle star, who will join Chelsea this weekend after completing a medical, refused to shake the hands of Maccabi Tel Aviv’s players in both legs of their Champions League qualifiers last year.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2544965/Why-did-new-11m-Chelsea-star-Mohamad-Salah-refuse-shake-hands-Israelis-twice.html

And let's face it...do we really need yet another attacking midfielder??? Cabaye or someone of that ilk would be a much better spend...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 24, 2014, 12:09:53 PM
agreed, Bart.

one has to be philosophical about it.  If the lad had REALLY wanted to come to Anfield, he would have.    I was reading overnight how Wenger did not want to sell Van Persie to United.  He wanted instead to sell him to Juventus.  But as Wenger said, you have to have the agreement of the three parties, before a deal can go ahead.     Salah could have came to Anfield if he had wanted.

And beyond the refusal to shake Israeli paws - he moved up a level when moving to the Swiss league - and if my memory serve me rightly, he has only scored 4 goals in that league.   The implication would be that he will struggle in top leagues.

He looks to have a small build - those type always struggle in the premiership.

I can imagine him becoming wealthy, but his career going nowhere (by being stuck in the Chelsea reserves).
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 27, 2014, 07:12:04 PM
So the clock ticketh...Salah has been and gone just like Mkhitaryan. The awesome January window of last year begins to look like a freak event.
Do the owners realise that with no Champs League next year we aint got a chance of keeping Suarez. Or maybe with the contract signed they want that 70 mil mentioned which will be a lovely little return on their investment.
Our squad is woefully thin and even Rodgers admits that. We have a chance of fourth, but with no investment then we'll fall by the wayside for another year.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 28, 2014, 06:26:57 AM
So i'm not the only one who's getting frustrated...Cabaye just been sold to PSG...


'Brendan Rodgers has expressed his frustration that Liverpool have failed to add to their squad in the transfer window but has vowed to keep searching for new talent until the last minute.
The Liverpool manager had hoped to sign Mohamed Salah from FC Basel but the Egypt international opted to join Chelsea after they muscled in and made a bigger offer.
It is the second time this campaign that Liverpool have been gazumped by Chelsea – they did so in August when swooping for Willian – but Rodgers is refusing to dwell on the matter.
Liverpool’s recruitment team are continuing to explore options – Rodgers has indicated he would even consider a loan if the quality was right – but, at this stage, it is looking unlikely whether they will bring anyone in. Rodgers has admitted that such an outcome would be a disappointment.
‘We’ll probably judge that (whether this month has been a frustration) best when the window has shut,’ said Rodgers. ‘We will see where we are at when the window shuts. Of course I wanted to strengthen the team that was already here.
‘If we are unable to that it would be disappointing, but there’s nothing you can do about it.  If we don’t get them in then, as a coach, I’ll work with what I’ve got. There’s no point in looking back on it.
We’ll reflect on it and as I said my sole intention then will be to maximise and get everything out of the players I have left. We can identify the players that we want to bring in and we hope we can get them in.
‘If we can, the club will do everything possible to match the value worth of the player. If they end up going to another club that of course is difficult to take. But you can’t worry about it you’ve just got to keep looking forward.’
Liverpool have a real chance of finishing in the top four this season and many supporters believe this month should have seen invest to enhance their prospects but Rodgers insists it has not been for the lack of trying.
The owners feel like (there is a chance of Champions League qualification) as well,’ said Rodgers. ‘They feel like that and the people in the club see where we are at. We’ve shown up until now that we can really challenge at the top end of the table
‘We’ve wanted to bring in players who could help us and players of quality. Let’s hope we can do that between now and the end of the window.’
Liverpool Managing Director Ian Ayre added about Salah’s decision to join Chelsea: ‘We haven’t been held back from concluding a deal, it would be wrong to say that. The player decided he didn’t want to come to Liverpool.
‘We know what the value of the player is and how far we were prepared to go. That is something myself, Brendan and the others involved in the process discuss openly. We won’t over-pay. In every transfer window you win some and lose some.’

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2547094/Brendan-Rodgers-frustrated-Liverpools-lack-activity-transfer-window.html
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 28, 2014, 08:40:23 AM
So i'm not the only one who's getting frustrated...Cabaye just been sold to PSG...


'Brendan Rodgers has expressed his frustration that Liverpool have failed to add to their squad in the transfer window but has vowed to keep searching for new talent until the last minute.
The Liverpool manager had hoped to sign Mohamed Salah from FC Basel but the Egypt international opted to join Chelsea after they muscled in and made a bigger offer.
It is the second time this campaign that Liverpool have been gazumped by Chelsea – they did so in August when swooping for Willian – but Rodgers is refusing to dwell on the matter.
Liverpool’s recruitment team are continuing to explore options – Rodgers has indicated he would even consider a loan if the quality was right – but, at this stage, it is looking unlikely whether they will bring anyone in. Rodgers has admitted that such an outcome would be a disappointment.
‘We’ll probably judge that (whether this month has been a frustration) best when the window has shut,’ said Rodgers. ‘We will see where we are at when the window shuts. Of course I wanted to strengthen the team that was already here.
‘If we are unable to that it would be disappointing, but there’s nothing you can do about it.  If we don’t get them in then, as a coach, I’ll work with what I’ve got. There’s no point in looking back on it.
We’ll reflect on it and as I said my sole intention then will be to maximise and get everything out of the players I have left. We can identify the players that we want to bring in and we hope we can get them in.
‘If we can, the club will do everything possible to match the value worth of the player. If they end up going to another club that of course is difficult to take. But you can’t worry about it you’ve just got to keep looking forward.’
Liverpool have a real chance of finishing in the top four this season and many supporters believe this month should have seen invest to enhance their prospects but Rodgers insists it has not been for the lack of trying.
The owners feel like (there is a chance of Champions League qualification) as well,’ said Rodgers. ‘They feel like that and the people in the club see where we are at. We’ve shown up until now that we can really challenge at the top end of the table
‘We’ve wanted to bring in players who could help us and players of quality. Let’s hope we can do that between now and the end of the window.’
Liverpool Managing Director Ian Ayre added about Salah’s decision to join Chelsea: ‘We haven’t been held back from concluding a deal, it would be wrong to say that. The player decided he didn’t want to come to Liverpool.
‘We know what the value of the player is and how far we were prepared to go. That is something myself, Brendan and the others involved in the process discuss openly. We won’t over-pay. In every transfer window you win some and lose some.’

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2547094/Brendan-Rodgers-frustrated-Liverpools-lack-activity-transfer-window.html

But surley you'd agree it's pointless to break the bank for a player who doesn't want to come?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 28, 2014, 11:45:58 AM
But surley you'd agree it's pointless to break the bank for a player who doesn't want to come?

I would completely agree with the statement above but the problem is that it's taking it out of context with what happened in reality.....

11 million which Chelsea paid wasn't breaking the bank and if we'd even offered 10 mil by January 1st, and stopped mincing about for the sake of 2 million, stumped up and looked like we actually made the player feel that we desperately wanted him, then Salah could have been signed up 3 weeks ago...We've been weakened 3 times now by Chelsea alone with Willian and Salah and even bloody Bertrand off too Villa on loan...so much for Rodgers special relationship with his friend, Mourinho....dog boy more like..

We're looking like amateurs who are off for their jollies and far more interested in the wining and dining rather than getting players signed...we've now got just over 3 days left to go for a panic buy because no one else is available...

We had a chance to get 4th....most of us on here have seen that we have a woefully weak squad and that Rodgers isn't the best tactically when we're in trouble...it is now 28 days aka 4 weeks after the opening of the transfer window and signed no one to strengthen us. Last January was a freak event.

Cheapskates and arrogant amateurs run our club.

No chance of 4th now...Mark my words...

p.s. and if we play Gerrard in defensive midfield tonight like we did for the Villa game, then i shudder to think what's going to happen..
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 28, 2014, 08:51:00 PM
LOL....3 -0 up and we're playing really well...let's maintain this and get the 3 points...cos united are winning also...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on January 28, 2014, 10:40:47 PM
But surley you'd agree it's pointless to break the bank for a player who doesn't want to come?

I would completely agree with the statement above but the problem is that it's taking it out of context with what happened in reality.....

And there lies the problem. If we don't spend above our valuation, we're tight and, if we do, we've overspent and been 'bent over'.

After some of the 'mares we've had in the transfer market in the past years, I'd rather we stick to our valuation, and if that means not getting the player, then move on. It's not like Salah is a signing worth financially pushing the boat out for.

However, our owners do have history for not 'investing' in January, even when we need it. Remember when we were desperately short of a striker under Dalglish's second stint, and we're within touching distance of fourth, and as a result fell away in the second half of the season.

Then again, after last January, last Summer's window didn't exactly do wonders for inspiring confidence, but it would be a mistake not to strengthen, with the obvious area being midfield.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on January 28, 2014, 10:41:37 PM
(http://gms.cachefly.net/images/6952876a121e45aea92f11e27966a1f2/130336087863846399/650x420/top.jpg)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on January 29, 2014, 12:27:30 PM
Could be very very interesting...

Liverpool have targeted an ambitious move for Yevhen Konoplyanka as Brendan Rodgers looks to make the star signing that will enhance his side's hopes of Champions League qualification.

After missing out on Mohamed Salah to Chelsea, Liverpool have turned their attentions to the Ukraine international, who has been building an impressive reputation at Dnipro.

Konoplyanka - who played in both Ukraine's World Cup qualifiers against England, scoring in the 1-1 draw at Wembley in September 2012 - is highly-regarded and if Liverpool were to capture the 24-year-old's signature in the next 48 hours, they could end up paying as much as £20million for a player who can operate effectively on the flanks or through the middle

Konoplyanka, however, fits the profile of player Liverpool are looking to sign.

If they were able to complete a deal for a player who has represented his country 35 times before this window closes, it would represent something of a coup.



Kyle Walker had a torrid time against Ukraine winger Yevhen Konoplyanka. The 23-year-old Dnipro man is incredibly fast and Walker struggled with that. The Tottenham defender is used to relying on his pace to get him out of trouble but Konoplyanka was faster than him.

From Keown's Match Zone after England 1-1 Ukraine in September 2012


http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2547918/Brendan-Rodgers-racing-sign-Yevhen-Konoplyanka-Liverpool.html
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 29, 2014, 02:30:44 PM
Bart beat me to it, with that Keown quote - I had copied it and was about to paste it here.

so if we have no problems with paying 16 million for Konoplyanka, why was 11 million so hard to find for our first choice (Salah)?

anyroads, I think Salah is best at Chelsea.  He made his bed and he can lie in it.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on January 30, 2014, 02:36:52 PM
A tad late but anyroad: WOW! What a performance. Maybe the best in your eyes this season Dude. I mean in terms of controlling things? In my book it was anyway (given the opposition and status of the game). My hope is that Rodgers can use the coming game against WBA to solodify that stability and bring it into the Arsenal game. Said a week or so back the the games against Everton, WBA and Arsenal will, to a large degree, determine the outcome of this season. If we can get 7 or better points out of it we will well and truly be in position to pick up one of the places among Europe's elite next season.

Hats off for Coutinho who was finally back to his creative best, spiced with a physicality to his game I haven't seen before. Also impressed by another solid performance by young Flanagan. Cissokho I feel sorry for actually. You really can tell he suffer from low confidence and knows he'll be out for good as soon as Enrique is back. Sturridge, of course, deserves a special mention. I think it was OK for him to take his chances in a way. Sure, objectively he should've passed it to Suarez but for too long this club's had its fair shair of well-combed and "nice" forwards. I like the "up yours" attitude from Daniel and Suarez.

As I said, very very important, yet winnable game away at WBA on Monday. I expect them to be on a low after last nights derby loss. A win would set us up nicely ahead of the Arsenal game.

Well done Rodgers for yet again reacting so quickly to previous mistakes!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on January 30, 2014, 11:21:58 PM
I hope we don't turn up at WBA on Monday............  :D I sincerely hope we do so on Sunday though!!

In regards to Enrique he is out for the rest of the season more or less. He may get 10 or 15 minutes here or there in the last game or two - but certainly not before then. So in essence the season is unfortunately over for him.

I do share your sentiments on Cissokho Martin. I also feel sorry for Cissokho in the sense that we all know he isn't up to the job on a long term basis - and he knows that. However he never ever hides, he always tries his best and is always wanting to improve.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 31, 2014, 07:38:44 PM
WOW! What a performance. Maybe the best in your eyes this season Dude. I mean in terms of controlling things? In my book it was anyway (given the opposition and status of the game).


I didn't catch the game live on tv, Martin...........had to make do with a few text commentaries from the live Guardian feed.

ok, everton were depleted, with injuries, but nevertheless we did turn them over, with quick counter attacks.

gerrard turned up, but he still is nowhere good enough IMHO to play at the back of midfield.

we just have to keep winning from the front.   City are looking good for the title.  But there is no reason why we cannot challenge arsenal and chelsea for the top spots.   I'd hate to think that we were merely fighting for 4th spot (especially this early).
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on January 31, 2014, 07:40:39 PM
I hope we don't turn up at WBA on Monday


 :D :D :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 01, 2014, 04:05:21 AM
That went well then...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 01, 2014, 04:30:32 AM
pic.twitter.com/oZ6EbmAPSH

 Dion Fanning @dionfanning
Harsh to blame Ayre for the collapse of a complicated deal. It's not as if Liverpool have kept missing out on player after play...oh

 Matt Jones @matt_jones92
Ian Ayre forgot his PayPal password and doesn't know his mother's maiden name
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 01, 2014, 12:51:08 PM
good article from (our) Jim Boardman in the Mirror.


It was a transfer window that gave Liverpool an opportunity to boost their chances of a return to Champions League football, but it was a transfer window that ended in empty-handed disappointment.

The way it ended, with Ian Ayre’s three-day Ukraine trip ending in failure, caused a great deal of anger amongst Reds fans.

That bid itself – to bring Yevhen Konoplyanka in from Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk – may well have been doomed to failure anyway. If the claims being made overnight are true, Dnipropetrovsk’s owner had wasted Liverpool’s time, refusing to sell the player even though Liverpool had met the terms of his release clause and agreed personal terms.

If there is a criticism to be made, it is of the decision to leave it so late to make a move for the player having dithered so long over Mohamed Salah. Further criticism would be aimed at the focus on one particular type of target. Is that because the transfer committee are failing to identify the right candidates or is it down to a lack of funds?

When the window opened it was clear that the Liverpool squad lacked quality in depth, a situation that could derail Liverpool’s hopes of finishing in a Champions League spot. The Reds have a strong side, one capable of beating just about anyone on its day, but the squad is vulnerable if injuries or dips in form take their toll.

The Reds’ absence from European football means it’s less of a problem than for their top four rivals but injuries aren’t only caused by playing lots of games. Liverpool will play just once a week for most of the rest of the season but the squad is down to its bare bones already.

When the window opened it was glaringly obvious that Liverpool needed a full-back. First-choice left-back Jose Enrique was out long-term. First choice right-back Glen Johnson was struggling for form and, we learned later, struggling with injury. Loanee Aly Cissokho, when fit had looked out of his depth. Youngster Jon Flanagan had become something of a saviour, drafted in during an emergency, but was also injured when the window opened.

Liverpool will go into February with Flanagan, Cissokho and Martin Kelly as the only full-backs available, all of which leaves Liverpool vulnerable and makes it odd that the focus was exclusively on bringing in an attacking player.

Top quality competition in every area of the field is important and Rodgers would no doubt have relished having more options alongside Suarez, Sturridge, Sterling and Coutinho, but it’s not an area of the field where there’s an injury crisis to contend with.

That’s not the case in central midfield and again Liverpool are vulnerable in this area. Lucas is out relatively long-term with injury and Joe Allen is in and out with various injuries. Rodgers was criticised against Aston Villa for experimenting with Gerrard in a deeper role but a week later had no choice, with he and Henderson the only experienced central midfielders fit and available.

Gerrard has looked better in his last two games in that deeper role, especially in the derby, but it remains to be seen whether he can sustain that level in that position week in week out for the rest of this season.

Rodgers said recently that he didn’t want the club to sign squad players – he wanted quality players who could come in as first choices. He didn’t get them.

Players like that aren’t cheap and there are question marks about just how much money the Reds have to spend.

A club like Liverpool needs to find that money all by itself. Owners FSG are sticking to their FFP guns and won’t lavish gifts on their manager like some clubs will. They want Liverpool to be self-sufficient and to help in that regard the club are finding new commercial partners all the time. But is all of that money being invested in the squad? As well as cutting the wage bill revenues have shot up in recent years, but has net transfer spending increased in the same way?

It would probably have been a good idea to delay the announcement of two new commercial deals by a few weeks. It’s those deals that will help fund future signings but it’s not what fans want to see Ian Ayre focusing on during the transfer window.

Supporters want to see a new player holding up a Liverpool scarf – instead they got Indonesian airline executives. Supporters want to see a future hero touching the “This Is Anfield” sign – instead they got a huge doughnut.

Missing out on Konoplyanka and losing Salah to Chelsea probably hasn’t made a huge difference to Liverpool’s hopes of getting into the Champions League but it has hit morale amongst fans and that is never a good thing.

The buzz in anticipation of a new signing was massive –but the disappointment at losing out was far greater.

Questions have to be asked of the transfer committee system, or its members, as well as the club’s actual transfer policy. At times it seems haphazard, to put it kindly.

In the meantime it’s important that fans focus any anger away from the players and the manager and stay behind the team. Liverpool are fourth, they’ve just hammered their local rivals 4-0 and if they can keep injuries at bay might even lose that gap on some of those teams above them.

In the meantime John Henry might want to sit down and work out what that transfer committee is smoking.

http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpool-transfer-policy-fans-want-3100747#.Uuzpk_ldV4I (http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpool-transfer-policy-fans-want-3100747#.Uuzpk_ldV4I)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 01, 2014, 06:01:16 PM
pretty good Saturday

United lose at Stoke - and Spurs draw with Hull

tho Everton did win.

if we can beat WBA, then we are 4 points clear of Everton and 5 clear of Spurs  (and with our great goal difference, it is effectively 5 and 6 points respectively).

United would be 9 points (effectively 10 points) behind us.

With 14 games to go, these points differences begin to take on more importance.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 01, 2014, 10:28:24 PM
Yeapp, as I sad 2 weeks ago, the upcoming 3 games against Everton, WBA and Arsenal will be seasondefining. If we win tomorrow we definitely open up a gap an put a lot of pressure on the teams behind. You know when a team depends on Naismith to score things ain't looking too bright, do they?  :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 01, 2014, 10:32:09 PM
pretty good Saturday

United lose at Stoke - and Spurs draw with Hull

tho Everton did win.

if we can beat WBA, then we are 4 points clear of Everton and 5 clear of Spurs  (and with our great goal difference, it is effectively 5 and 6 points respectively).

United would be 9 points (effectively 10 points) behind us.

With 14 games to go, these points differences begin to take on more importance.

At the same time, spending 37 million didn't seem to do the trick, did it? I have faith this squad is good enough do drag us over the line. It was a tad sloppy on Salah and unfortonate on Konoplyanka but I sincerely doubt any of the two represents the difference between finishing 4th or not. I'm sure the right people will learn from this. This summer window will, after all, be much more important to get right.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 02, 2014, 03:33:24 PM
I caught the second half.

we got away with a draw.  WBA were on top in the second half, and if anybody deserved to win it, it was them.

again, as happens far too often, we cannot go on to win a game that we have gone ahead in.  Rodgers has to start looking at himself in the mirror and start learning some lessons.  This stuff is now highly predictable.

in any normal division, a point away from home would be a good result (win your homes, draw your aways, being the rule of thumb).  But in the premiership, that is not good enough.  Especially since we have spent barrow loads of money, in comparison to teams like WBA.

I wish Gerrard would retire and let the club move forward. I hate watching the way he disrupts the team play.  His passes are telegraphed.  You can see him thinking.   


How can a team have any pattern when he dominates the pattern of play so much.  How often do these passes come off.  How much do others play have to suffer before someone says ENOUGH.

Disappointed today.  We had a chance to stay on the tails of the top 3.  Now it is turning into two mini leagues (city, arsenal and chelsea for the title..........and everton spurs and liverpool, for 4th spot).


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 02, 2014, 04:01:48 PM
Bitterly disappointed and sad with the attitude of the players today. No will, no grit, no urge to change the run of play last 25. If we lose out on 4th we may very well look back on this game and think this is where we bottled it. I despair at the though we could hardly create a chance during the last half hour bar that one-on-one for Sturridge which was a clear penalty. How Foster got away with that two footed lounge I don't understand.

I also think Rodgers got it wrong with his team selection. Sterling is just useless in games like these. Henderson was back to his headless chicken antics. Sturridge put most of his energy into doing things sooo much more difficult than they have to be and Coutinho was completely lost. I think we would've stood up better in the center of the park with Allen instead of Henderson or Coutinho.

Defeat to Arsenal and it's all over I reckon.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 02, 2014, 06:29:01 PM
We're obviously hanging back for bets. Hey why make it easy on ourselves? Without any back up squad this is going to be the typical result. Too much money spent on nonsense like Aspas and the like.
And too many players out on bloody loan. Borini played very well yesterday and Suso should never have gone anywhere.

Gerrard looked knackered and played like he did against Villa. Allen would have been a better choice to start at least.
I'm also not sure why flanaghan can't go back and play as left back with kelly on the right. I would suggest Toure is looking very long in the tooth now which is probably why Citeh let him go.

If we scrape 4th then a massive investment is needed, in order for Suarez just remain interested in our 'project'.
With no fourth we don't have to worry about that anyway.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 03, 2014, 08:31:07 AM
Still disappointed but feel, after a few hours contemplation and reflection, that my expectations might exceed what's realistic to ask of the team. There are currently 3 teams capable to change the run of play the last 20 to secure a win and all 3 of  them are placed above us. Roder's had some 18 months to develop the team and it just as well to admit he haven't reach that stage yet where we play badly for 70 minutes and yet manage to pull off a win. To get there we probably need 2 new fullbacks 1 midfielder and 1-2 CB's.

Arsenal home really have become a make or break game as a consequence of yesterday's result. I think it'll be another draw though.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 03, 2014, 02:29:33 PM
Still disappointed but feel, after a few hours contemplation and reflection, that my expectations might exceed what's realistic to ask of the team. There are currently 3 teams capable to change the run of play the last 20 to secure a win and all 3 of  them are placed above us. Roder's had some 18 months to develop the team and it just as well to admit he haven't reach that stage yet where we play badly for 70 minutes and yet manage to pull off a win. To get there we probably need 2 new fullbacks 1 midfielder and 1-2 CB's.

Arsenal home really have become a make or break game as a consequence of yesterday's result. I think it'll be another draw though.

Come on you redmen!!!

If we can't beat a team in the relegation zone when we have a gilt edged chance of moving away from any other challengers for 4th and 9 above manure, then we might as well give up.
Shiite transfer policy all round has cost us big style. Pretty damning as well that Aspas, Alberto and Moses were not even close to coming on when we've had 3 games in 8 days and playing with such a small squad.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 03, 2014, 04:08:06 PM
If we can't beat a team in the relegation zone when we have a gilt edged chance of moving away from any other challengers for 4th and 9 above manure, then we might as well give up.
Shiite transfer policy all round has cost us big style. Pretty damning as well that Aspas, Alberto and Moses were not even close to coming on when we've had 3 games in 8 days and playing with such a small squad.

Then again, half the league's in the relegation zone so... The transfer policy had zip, zero, nil to do with the fact we didn't have the mental edge to up our game last 20 to win it. Hopefully Rodgers will get the team there next season. It'll be a nailbiter for 4th right down to the wire.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 05, 2014, 01:31:30 PM
Shiite transfer policy all round has cost us big style. Pretty damning as well that Aspas, Alberto and Moses were not even close to coming on when we've had 3 games in 8 days and playing with such a small squad.


countinhio and sturridge aside, our transfer committee at Anfield have been very very poor.


e.g. did any of these guys go out and watch Cissokho before bringing him the the club.



Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 05, 2014, 07:51:32 PM
Harsh IMHO, I would say they got Sakho pretty spot on. I'm confident when we summarize his Liverpool-career he'll be up there with Hansen, Hyppiä and Carra.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 06, 2014, 01:13:37 PM
Harsh IMHO, I would say they got Sakho pretty spot on. I'm confident when we summarize his Liverpool-career he'll be up there with Hansen, Hyppiä and Carra.


Sakho looks good


but these last 4 or 5 years, we have bought an awful lot of turkeys.


it's one thing if competition (for your position) keeps you out; but quite another if you are not technically good enough to get in the side.   e.g. Cisshoko


how does a sub-standard player (technically wise) ever get to this level.   How does he get past so many people (scouts) and make it to a top club.







Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 08, 2014, 01:39:12 PM
4-0 against Everton. 4-0 at HT against the leaders. There should be no doubt anymore we're going places. THERE'S ONLY ONEE BRENDAN RODGERS, ONE BRENDAN RODGERS!!!!

COME ON YOU REDMEN!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 08, 2014, 02:47:38 PM
As I said, we're going places under Rodgers. What a wonderful slaughter of the most overrated team in the league. We're just a one man team, a one man team! Stick it up where it belong you fukin media. Let's beat Fulham and hope the Mancs can do us a favor and we're right up there!!!!

COME ON YOU REDMEN!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 08, 2014, 03:58:46 PM
In the first 20 minutes we were awesome...the early goal put the a.rse on the defensive and we could then counter.
I liked how Rodgers finally ruled us out of the title race before this game, lo and behold the pressure is off the players and we play like that.
Also Rodgers must now see the difference between futile possession and game dominance now, in this game it was 41%, and we absolutely murdered them on the counter.
If we play as well as this for the rest of the season, then 4th can be ours.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 08, 2014, 10:50:41 PM
There's every reason to aim higher mate!  :) We're going places under Rodgers. There's only one Brendan Rodgers, one Brendan Rodgers!!!

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 10, 2014, 05:11:03 PM
A fantastic result.

And I see the media have finally caught up.   There is always a time lag between something happening and them finally figuring it out.     Our performances in the final weeks of November and early weeks of December, were those of a title winning team.

We lagged in late December.   But performances in recent weeks now see us again playing breath-taking football.   The media have not caught on.

Our football is Keeganesque in it's focus on attack.  And we have areas of the team that are limited. 

If we can keep up this level of performance - and treat the final 13 league games as cup finals, we could win the title.

But consistency is what is hampering us.   
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 10, 2014, 05:30:05 PM
And over at Old Trafford, things go from bad to worse.

They are playing awful football.  They have abandoned playing with out and out wingers.  They are not passing and breaking at speed.  Their defence is a shambles.   And they now will lose Vidic and Ferdinand this summer. 

The Fergie Fear Factor is gone.   The belief is gone.  Other sides now smell anxiety and fear.

They need to build a new team this coming summer. I think they need to replace at least half of the team.   That is a massive undertaking.  And as we saw with Spurs this past summer, spending barrow-loads of money is no guarantee of success.  And how does spending 100 to 150 million, on half a dozen top new players, sit with the Glazers, who already are in many hundreds of million pounds of debt at United (and most likely no Champions League football next year, or maybe for a while).

The Glazers are in new uncharted waters.  They have only ever known success - and all via a special manager, in Alex Ferguson.  This is all new to them.  How will they handle adversity.  Will they let Moyes have more time, or will he be replaced in the summer.  I think most people are overly confident that Moyes will get more time.  I can imagine (rightly or wrongly) that they will bring in a new man at the end of the season.

I see so many similarities between United now and Liverpool in the early 90s.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 10, 2014, 05:44:58 PM
And I forgot to add - the Financial Fair Play rules may hinder United's rebuild.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 11, 2014, 09:35:46 AM
A fantastic result.

And I see the media have finally caught up.   There is always a time lag between something happening and them finally figuring it out.     Our performances in the final weeks of November and early weeks of December, were those of a title winning team.

We lagged in late December.   But performances in recent weeks now see us again playing breath-taking football.   The media have not caught on.

Our football is Keeganesque in it's focus on attack.  And we have areas of the team that are limited. 

If we can keep up this level of performance - and treat the final 13 league games as cup finals, we could win the title.

But consistency is what is hampering us.

Yes indeed breathtaking footy at its best. Beating Everton and Arsenal 9-1 really really puts us in the mix. It's incredibly important we can keep the focus in the upcoming four games against Fulham, Swansea, So'ton and Sunderland. I would expect nothing less than 10 points from these games if we are to have any chance to push City and Chelsea all the way. It pleases me to hear the players come out realising this was just one game, that we can't afford to dwell on it but instead shift focus to the tricky Fulham away fixture.

Even though they got the most unlikely point of the season and should be all fired up for the game against us, surely that point must've cost them a lot of energy? Hence it's vital the game's not postponed.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 11, 2014, 11:31:17 AM
And over at Old Trafford, things go from bad to worse.

They are playing awful football.  They have abandoned playing with out and out wingers.  They are not passing and breaking at speed.  Their defence is a shambles.   And they now will lose Vidic and Ferdinand this summer. 

The Fergie Fear Factor is gone.   The belief is gone.  Other sides now smell anxiety and fear.

They need to build a new team this coming summer. I think they need to replace at least half of the team.   That is a massive undertaking.  And as we saw with Spurs this past summer, spending barrow-loads of money is no guarantee of success.  And how does spending 100 to 150 million, on half a dozen top new players, sit with the Glazers, who already are in many hundreds of million pounds of debt at United (and most likely no Champions League football next year, or maybe for a while).

The Glazers are in new uncharted waters.  They have only ever known success - and all via a special manager, in Alex Ferguson.  This is all new to them.  How will they handle adversity.  Will they let Moyes have more time, or will he be replaced in the summer.  I think most people are overly confident that Moyes will get more time.  I can imagine (rightly or wrongly) that they will bring in a new man at the end of the season.

I see so many similarities between United now and Liverpool in the early 90s.

I hear what you say mate, and although I agree a lot I also reckon there's a difference between how things really are and how we would like them to be. I would wait another year or two before asserting their objective downfall from power with such certainty.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 11, 2014, 10:04:19 PM
Absofuckingluetly made up to see the Chavs drop points at the Hawthorn.  ;D ;D ;D

Come on you redmen!!!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 12, 2014, 05:58:58 PM
Even though they got the most unlikely point of the season and should be all fired up for the game against us, surely that point must've cost Fulham a lot of energy? Hence it's vital the game's not postponed.

Fulham have lost their last two home games.  Indeed, they have lost four of their last six home games.

Liverpool have won four and drawn two, of their last six away games.

So we should at least pick up a point, and in the vast majority of cases, win by a few goals.

I will predict a 4-1 victory.








Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 12, 2014, 06:03:52 PM
I hear what you say mate, and although I agree a lot I also reckon there's a difference between how things really are and how we would like them to be. I would wait another year or two before asserting their objective downfall from power with such certainty.

oh, with their massive worldwide fan-base, and money potential, they will be (like post-early-90s Liverpool i.e. since the end of our era of domination) there or there-abouts.

but importantly, their era of absolute domination would appear to be over.

Fergie was a special manager......a one-off.  He is irreplaceable.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 12, 2014, 06:09:57 PM
Absofuckingluetly made up to see the Chavs drop points at the Hawthorn.  ;D ;D ;D

ifonly we had not dropped stupid points, we would be sitting at the top of the tree......or within 3 points.

if we can keep the pressure on - and treat these final 13 games as cup finals, we will be in the mix.

indeed IMHO if we win all 13 games, we will definitely be champions.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 12, 2014, 07:31:26 PM
ifonly we had not dropped stupid points, we would be sitting at the top of the tree......or within 3 points.

if we can keep the pressure on - and treat these final 13 games as cup finals, we will be in the mix.

indeed IMHO if we win all 13 games, we will definitely be champions.

Yeah, I agree. But at least we gifted them that goal, rather than conceding from being outplayed.

Have a feeling United will do us a favor tonite. Let's just hope we can keep the same energy level tonite we did on Saturday. If we do that we should be OK.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 12, 2014, 10:20:51 PM
Now if that wasn't a cup win!!!!! This team's come a long way this season despite the CB's being the opponents best players. Surely this must be Toure's last game this season now that Agger's back? Skrtel again put the team in a difficult situation with a costly and totally unnecessary mistake.

Cred must go to Sturridge who's become a new leader in the team. He's so good it's unbelieveable.
If only Suarez can find the goal again. But by the look of itt he's playing for the team which is priceless.

Coutinho was actually quite wasteful but is forgiven for the equaliser.

Cissokho had another solid performance and so did Flanagan who needs to work on his delieveries into the box though. Terrible crossing.

Gerrard's getting better and better by the game and the way he took that penalty you have to take your hat off for the captain.

Henderson was quite a Disappointment. He really really lack the break through ability. Fair enough he's working hard and passes the ball sideways very well, but his overall contribution was quite disappointing.

Sterling was excellent first 30 but eventually faded. Was a tad surprised to see young Txeira get some game time.

All in all a fantastic victory that may prove a turning point for this team. Wins like these often sees team take major leaps in development.

Very proud and happy of the redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on February 12, 2014, 10:39:54 PM
Brendan Rodgers has balls to take off Sterling in favor of a youth team player with us desperate for a goal. Not a lot of coaches would have done that.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 13, 2014, 07:01:52 AM
Excellent result though of course we have to do it the hard way! Once we get the defence sorted out we can get top 4...i for one am not even going there with 'we can win the l..gue'...cos i'll jinx it as it'll tempt fate and enact murphys law...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 13, 2014, 11:22:37 AM
one down, twelve to go.

12 more cup finals

Liverpool v Swansea City   

-----------------------------
Southampton v Liverpool   

-----------------------------
Liverpool v Sunderland   

-----------------------------
Man United v Liverpool

----------------------------- 
Cardiff City v Liverpool

-----------------------------   
Liverpool v Spurs

-----------------------------   
West Ham v Liverpool

----------------------------- 
Liverpool v Man City   

-----------------------------
Norwich City v Liverpool

----------------------------- 
Liverpool v Chelsea   

-----------------------------
Crystal Palace v Liverpool 

-----------------------------
Liverpool v Newcastle United
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on February 13, 2014, 01:04:12 PM
Pessimist in me says 16 points.

Realistic in me says 23 points.

Optimist in me says 29 points.

Anything above 29 points and I'd be in heaven.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 13, 2014, 01:43:23 PM
16 it is then Ed mate. Our captain has spoken. It's all over. Damn!

http://www.thesportreview.com/tsr/2014/02/liverpool-are-dark-horses-in-title-race-declares-steven-gerrard/
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 13, 2014, 02:12:23 PM
one down, twelve to go.

12 more cup finals

Liverpool v Swansea City   

-----------------------------
Southampton v Liverpool   

-----------------------------
Liverpool v Sunderland   

-----------------------------
Man United v Liverpool

----------------------------- 
Cardiff City v Liverpool

-----------------------------   
Liverpool v Spurs

-----------------------------   
West Ham v Liverpool

----------------------------- 
Liverpool v Man City   

-----------------------------
Norwich City v Liverpool

----------------------------- 
Liverpool v Chelsea   

-----------------------------
Crystal Palace v Liverpool 

-----------------------------
Liverpool v Newcastle United


If Man C and Chelsea progress in the CL it'll be of great benefit to us as they'll play quarter/semi finals just days before travelling to Anfield. So'ton, Man U and Spurs games will be key games. The others I consider winnable although I expect an unexpected slip up or two along the road. Impossible to predict things but I hope we can get a good string of results in the upcoming 3 games of which 2 are at home to bottom half teams. So'ton I hope and expect we will be prepared for this time round.

29 would be an absolutely massive return, I agree Edward.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 13, 2014, 02:29:40 PM
If Man C and Chelsea progress in the CL it'll be of great benefit to us as they'll play quarter/semi finals just days before travelling to Anfield. So'ton, Man U and Spurs games will be key games. The others I consider winnable although I expect an unexpected slip up or two along the road. Impossible to predict things but I hope we can get a good string of results in the upcoming 3 games of which 2 are at home to bottom half teams. So'ton I hope and expect we will be prepared for this time round.

yes, I look at it in the same way - that is, view 3 or so games at a time. 

the away games will be difficult.....very difficult.

but we play all the top teams at Anfield.   So it is all in our own hands.

And as you say Martin - if Chelsea and City progress in the CL, they will have their resources stretched, prior to coming to Anfield.

massive games ahead - and in a month's time, when we go to Old Trafford, we will be in a position to end their chances of CL qualification.   And when Spurs visit Anfield, we would be in a position to end their CL dreams too.

But it would even just be awesome to be in the mix (within 3 points) come the final day of the season.

But if we go on a run, these next 3 months, then things are going to be very exciting.

It is all in our hands.  We must never lost sight of that fact.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 14, 2014, 10:07:38 AM
yes, I look at it in the same way - that is, view 3 or so games at a time. 

the away games will be difficult.....very difficult.

but we play all the top teams at Anfield.   So it is all in our own hands.

And as you say Martin - if Chelsea and City progress in the CL, they will have their resources stretched, prior to coming to Anfield.

massive games ahead - and in a month's time, when we go to Old Trafford, we will be in a position to end their chances of CL qualification.   And when Spurs visit Anfield, we would be in a position to end their CL dreams too.

But it would even just be awesome to be in the mix (within 3 points) come the final day of the season.

But if we go on a run, these next 3 months, then things are going to be very exciting.

It is all in our hands.  We must never lost sight of that fact.

Agree every word there Dude. It's just a such a fantastic feeling, as you say, it's in our own hands. If we could pull off something similar to what we did in the spring of 2009...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on February 14, 2014, 12:42:29 PM
I'm not being a negative nancy but I hope there won't be much criticising if we don't win the league from people.

Our aim this season was to qualify for the CL and we are in an excellent position to do just that and I'd be delighted at the end of the season with 3rd or 4th (so long as their is no english CL winner  i.e. Arsenal or man U! :D )

 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 14, 2014, 01:34:37 PM
I'm not being a negative nancy but I hope there won't be much criticising if we don't win the league from people.

Our aim this season was to qualify for the CL and we are in an excellent position to do just that and I'd be delighted at the end of the season with 3rd or 4th (so long as their is no english CL winner  i.e. Arsenal or man U! :D )

I honestly belive it's a media thing more than anything. Although some fans are starting to hope we can do I my feeling is that most of us would realise CL qualification was our original target and would represent a massive improvement on last season.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on February 16, 2014, 06:17:15 PM
Firstly Howard Webb is a fornicating c**t.

Secondly we dominated and bullied Arsenal. At the emirates. Let that sink in.

Thirdly our finishing was off today but alas those are the breaks. Defensively we were suspect for the first goal and got caught out for the second.

However can I also mention that Howard Webb is a c**t? Because he is!

But more importantly our mentality is improving all the time. It's we, not the opponents, that determine the outcome of the games. I like that, even if we lost today.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 16, 2014, 07:05:21 PM
I would agree wholeheartedly with that Edward. It's hard to take a defeat when they had to do next to nothing to get their goals. Always said I don't trust Sturridge and today is why. Horrendous finishing. Skrtel IS a liability. He made Another lay-off today totally and utterly unnecessary. He also got it wrong on their first.

Disappointed and gutted with Webb as per usual. The Gooners can moan all they want about that 2nd yellow on Steven, had Webb done what any competent referee should it would never have come to that.

Hopefully we'll make good use of the week ahead of the Swansea game. Am a tad nervous Suarez looks totally out of goal scoring form. We need him at his best for the remaining 12 games. Lets make the Swans pay for this.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 16, 2014, 07:41:29 PM
Not too bothered cos we want top 4...
henderson should have started and quite why he was rested with a week off now is anyone's guess...that it was rectified just showed the glaring error of dropping him in the first place...
we lost it in midfield today cos they had flamini back and we dropped henderson...
we can blame howard webb all we like...but if suarez stops the play acting and looking like something from the matrix then we could have got the second pen...the first pen was highly debateable as well...
as dude says we now have 12 cup finals...no more distractions, no more excuses...
we play our full strength team or we don't get top 4...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on February 16, 2014, 08:32:39 PM
We didn't drop Henderson. He had an operation on Thursday and it was a good time to give Allen a start.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 17, 2014, 08:55:38 AM
What Edward said re Henderson.

On another not I'd like to criticise Flanagan. He actually had a terrible game yesterday. A number of times he was caught out of position giving away free-kicks in dangerous areas or providing ample space for Arsenal to attack. But worst of all was how he acted, or rather how he didn't act, on their second goal. It amazes me he didn't realise he had to move into the center and get close to Podolski.

The lad's had a run of very impressive games, but just because he's a local lad an'all he ain't excempt from criticism.

The fact of the matter is we're currently playing with two fullbacks that would struggle to make most top-sides.

Need Johnson and Enrique back ASAP.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 18, 2014, 10:04:28 AM
On another note. Against Gunners Sturridge stood on the brink to become the first ever Liverpool player to score in 9 consecutive games - bottled it big big time. Remember last year when he was about to become the first ever Liverpool player to score in 5 consecutive games as a new player? Bottled it.

Coincidence or maybe he haven't matured all that much when all comes around? Suarez is much much more of a team player.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 18, 2014, 12:55:59 PM
On another note. Against Gunners Sturridge stood on the brink to become the first ever Liverpool player to score in 9 consecutive games - bottled it big big time. Remember last year when he was about to become the first ever Liverpool player to score in 5 consecutive games as a new player? Bottled it.

Coincidence or maybe he haven't matured all that much when all comes around? Suarez is much much more of a team player.

Right, bit of luck that Sturridge didnt bottle it for the previous eight games then.  WTF is that about? He lies 2nd in the Premier league top scorers table and he's 6 above van persie and 7 above negredo and rooney. He's scored 19 in all and 5 short of Luis. Strikers need to be greedy and when i hear that a striker does a lot of defending then it's obvious that his days are numbered.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 19, 2014, 08:30:58 AM
Just saying he's too occupied with making a name for himself to the extent he lose concentration which effects the team in a negative way. Just look at the goals against Everton, Arsenal and Fulham. Clinical as can be, then he goes on to waste more clear cut chances than Chelsea or Spurs managed to create this season inside one game. He's not the finished article no matter how many goals he's scored this season. Don't trust him fully yet to deliever when we need it the most as was evident on Sunday.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 23, 2014, 02:01:22 PM
Fuckin Skrtel's gonna cost us CL qualification. Fuckin waste that one. So overrated. Costs us a goal every fuckin time he steps on the pitch. So fuckin worthless it's unbelievable. Agger's no better.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 23, 2014, 02:23:07 PM
Incredible this game isn't done and settled. Coutinho and Henderson needs a kick up the backside after a terrible, terrible first half where they allowed Swansea oceans of space in the center for the simple reason they weren't willing to run that extra yard (but they sure as hell are eager to tell anyone willing to listen we're gonna win the title). Not enough humility. Sterling brilliant first 20 but haven't got the chance to shine thanks to our dysfynctional midfield.

Very very disappointed by the attitude. It's one thing if the opponents are better, a totally different when you allow them to be just because you don't have the right attitude. SORT IT fornicating OUT!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 23, 2014, 02:37:19 PM
Thank you Skrtel, thank you very much. Surely this has got to be his last game in a red shirt when Sakho's back. He's gonna cost us 4th. Mark my words.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 23, 2014, 02:50:31 PM
That's 4th gone. Outplayed and outrunned by a team that played in the EL less than 72 hours ago. Embarrassing. Never want to hear our players talk about confidence and quality again.

Most important of all is to get rid of Skrtel. A total liability who cost us a goal/game.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 23, 2014, 03:48:14 PM
Talk about making it difficult for ourselves Not impressed at all with our attitude today. Too many players on the pitch thinking they're good enough as it is without being willing to put the hard work in. The spaces we constantly keep giving away is alarming and needs sorting out ASAP. Allen a revelation when he came on. Must start at St. Mary's at the expense of Henderson who, besides his goals, did nothing today to merit a starting place.
 
During the 35 years I've watched this great club play football I have NEVER seen such a shaky defense. We so miss Sakho and another quality CB. If we can sort out our defense this summer (agree with Lawro it's too late ths season) we will be a force for the title next season.

I'm terribly disapointed with the attitude among the players. We've been telling anyone willing to listen this weak what a blessing it was going out of the Cup, just to put in such a lacklustre performance.

My player ratings:

Mignolet 5 - Is lightyears behind Reina in terms of providing calm and stability to the defense. Made a number of bad decisions that almost got costly. The one save he made would've gone wide anyroad.

Flanagan 7 - So and so in the first half but stood up and made a number of initiatives when it mattered the most in the last quarter of the game.

Skrtel 2 - Directly involved in all three goals. More and more look like the white answer to Titus Bramble. Laughable at best.

Agger 4 - Didn't link up with Johnson at all. Looked short on confidence and did Little to help the defense get back into the game when it mattered the most. Disappointing considering he's the VC.

Johnson 6 - Had a few shaky moments defensively but did well considering he's been out for quite some time and made his come back in an unnatural position.

Gerrard 6 - Did not manage to keep the central midfiled tight. Was poor on their first and reacted way way too late. Not the leader we needed today.

Henderson 4/7 - I put 4/7 because his 2 matchwinning goal could prove vital to our season. Other than that he looked complacent and totally out of sorts. Back to his back-/sidepassing worst. No inititative, no hard work. Will see his place threatened by Allen and Lucas.

Coutinho 4 - Another wasted game where he was anonymous for virtually 90 minutes. Need to ask more of himself.

Sterling 7 - Absolutely brilliant opening 20. Faded early due to our inability to keep possession and be on top of things which is a must if Sterling's to excel. Fantastic assisst to Sturridge's opener.

Suarez  6 - Ouch. Have a bad feeling about Luis. Totally out of form. Desperate for a goal that's obvious. Made many confusing decisions. Going through a tough run but once he scores I'll expect him to be back at his lethal self.

Sturride 8 - You have to hand it to the man. Scores a brace and sets up a third. Could sometimes do better with his decisionmaking but as long as he keeps scoring and assisting I won't complain too much. My MOTM.

Moses 3 - Does he really want to play?

Toure 4 - Marked by his mistakes of lately. Totally out of confidence.

Allen 8 - Made a great contribution when he came on and was the only midfielder to show som will and grit today. Surely he must start against So'ton.

All in all an incredibly important win. Either it serves as a wake-up call or this is a sing the wheels is coming off. Next weekend's game will give us a hint.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on February 23, 2014, 03:56:40 PM
A bad deflection and a penalty makes it look a lot worse than it was, but the defending was a consequence of the open midfield. Allow a good passing team to go at your defence without pressure and you'll see your back four get carved up. A few things to be fixed, but it starts with the middle of the park before you go to the back four. We were every bit as open in the middle today as we were tight and compact in the middle against Spurs. There seems to be no middle ground. Having said that, they only got one "real" goal from an open shot, which was Shelvey's.

Mentality was a key here, and although we pushed through to win, the first half sloppiness is what made this a contest, not anything endemic to the system.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 23, 2014, 04:14:05 PM
Yer way, way to kind IMHO, Edward mate. I would agree the non-existing pressure from our midfield didn't help our back-4 but Skrtel gave that free-kick and penalty away unnecessary. Everytime they got near the box it was a cirkus and you really felt they could score from anything.

I don't question the system as much as I question Rodger's ability to get the lads fired up for the games. Villa, WBA, Fulham and Swansea. Four games we should win easily but we didn't. This is a weakness in his management and it won't see us through to 4th unless he sorts it out. Mark my words. Fergie would never accept such a run of lacklustre performances.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 23, 2014, 07:30:03 PM
That's 4th gone. Outplayed and outrunned by a team that played in the EL less than 72 hours ago. Embarrassing. Never want to hear our players talk about confidence and quality again.

Most important of all is to get rid of Skrtel. A total liability who cost us a goal/game.

Keep the faith Martin! We have been to the mountain top and all we can do is believe!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 23, 2014, 07:48:51 PM
Yer way, way to kind IMHO, Edward mate. I would agree the non-existing pressure from our midfield didn't help our back-4 but Skrtel gave that free-kick and penalty away unnecessary. Everytime they got near the box it was a cirkus and you really felt they could score from anything.

I don't question the system as much as I question Rodger's ability to get the lads fired up for the games. Villa, WBA, Fulham and Swansea. Four games we should win easily but we didn't. This is a weakness in his management and it won't see us through to 4th unless he sorts it out. Mark my words. Fergie would never accept such a run of lacklustre performances.

Martin, Martin, Martin...why the negativity? We won with the helter skelter nonsense that has been our season, what more do you want?
Us seasoned pros have given up on making comment, about the lack of a tight midfield etc...
and all we can do is crack open the 18th beer, smoke a large spliff, descend into transcendental meditation and then enjoy the ride...things like tactics,  the right players and the like are simply a passe and outmoded way of thinking. The future is chaos, the future is Brendan!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 23, 2014, 07:54:54 PM
Oh and on a more serious note...bring back Steve Clarke to sort the shambles that is our defence, it's beyond a joke now...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 24, 2014, 08:59:25 AM
Oh and on a more serious note...bring back Steve Clarke to sort the shambles that is our defence, it's beyond a joke now...

At the same time, and in fairness, I really think Rodgers got a point when he says some of our errors are "uncoachable".

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 24, 2014, 09:10:10 AM
So, here we are in 4th place, 4 points off the summit with 11 games to go. I really, really think we're a tad unfortunate to have our homegame against Sunderland postponed as it sees us face 3 consecutive awaygames. Furthermore, it forces on us a 2 week break between the So'ton and ManU games which could be detrimental to our momentum.

I would say the So'ton game is arguably the most important of the season. A win and we'll definitely close the door to 4th for United thus making it easier to get a result at OT. A loss at St. Mary's, on the other hand, would mean United will have more than halfed the number of points they trailed us in just two games if the beat us at home. That would put us under a lot of pressure going into the Cardiff (a), Spurs (h), West Ham (a) and City (h) games.

I really really hope we will be prepared this time and that Skrtel's staying behind watching the game on telly.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on February 24, 2014, 12:14:15 PM
Anyone know where Lucas is back? I have a feeling he'll be key, that 2 week break might be a blessing in disguise if we can sit him in front of the defence and steady the line.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 25, 2014, 09:30:59 AM
Anyone know where Lucas is back? I have a feeling he'll be key, that 2 week break might be a blessing in disguise if we can sit him in front of the defence and steady the line.

I'd say that would be the only aspect in which the two weak break can be seen as a blessing. I'm dead worried what it means to our momentum we won't have a competitive game in that time.

As for Lucas I haven't heard anything which might indicate he's still some time from a return given that articles about Sakho's return starts to pop up. Reckon we'll get more information at the end of the week.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 25, 2014, 06:46:44 PM
can't wait to see Lucas back.

Gerrard is embarrassingly bad in the middle of the park.   He was rubbish first half v swansea.   Their first goal can be credited to his lazy efforts at tracking or defending.  He was lazy for their second too.

It is no coincidence that we are conceding far too many goals this past month - when Captain Marvel is in the team, we might as well raise the white flag in the middle of the park. 

And with nothing in front of them, our poor central defence are left entirely exposed.

And did anyone catch the yarn that Rodgers was trying to spin, that you cannot coach how to defend.

What a load of tripe.  The problem starts with identifying the underlying issue - namely, the lack of support that our central midfield is giving our defence.

We now have 11 cup finals.  If we win them all, we will win the league title.

But, I do fear that Southampton could ruin our season this weekend. 


We cannot go on riding our luck, like we have been doing (by throwing away needless goals).  Sooner, rather than later, one's luck will run out.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 26, 2014, 10:17:03 AM
Nah. Riding our luck? When? Gerrard had a shot in the inside of the post in the 90th. Suarez denied an obvious penalty while Bony was given a very soft one. I wouldn't say we've been particularly lucky in the sense Chelsea was against the Toffees. We haven't been all that bad defensively against the top 5 teams conceding 7 in 4 games (all away).

But I agree with your general Point our midfield is totally unable to provide cover for the defense, although Skrte's decision to go for a free-kick and constantly pulling shirts in the box doesn't help.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 26, 2014, 01:26:00 PM
Have seen a compilation of Allen's cameo and I have to say he must start at St. Mary's. I cannot for the life of it understand the hype surrounding Henderson's performance against Swansea. I thought Allen was everything Henderson wasn't, except those two goals.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on February 28, 2014, 02:18:26 PM
I agree with your general Point our midfield is totally unable to provide cover for the defense, although Skrte's decision to go for a free-kick and constantly pulling shirts in the box doesn't help.


in my team - gerrard would play on the right side of midfield - or he would not play at all.


we are going to drift out of the title race (most likely this weekend) primarily because our central midfield is providing no cover for our defence.







Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on February 28, 2014, 07:37:20 PM

in my team - gerrard would play on the right side of midfield - or he would not play at all.


we are going to drift out of the title race (most likely this weekend) primarily because our central midfield is providing no cover for our defence.

Tomorrow's game will decide it all I'd say, Dude. A defeat and 4th might all of a sudden be in danger. A win, on the other hand, would give us 2 weeks to prepare and set us up for the ManU game (they play Olympiakos just 3 Days after us, remember). Being 4 Points off the summit with 11 games to go I think it's only fair to suggest we should aim at nothing less than a win. I don't mean to sound overconfident or arrogant towards So'ton. But it is So'ton after all, regardless of our bad track record at their place.

I know it won't happen but based on his cameo agains the Swans I'd Allen's a key to get a hold of the midfield tomorrow. As per usual it'll be Henderson who starts with Coutinho in front of Gerrard. No surprises for Pochettino there, I'm afraid. Don't think it would be fair or wise to throw Sakho into the mix although he's by far our best CB having been out for 2 months.

For a change I'd like us to start slowly and patiently take over the run of play.

Dead nervous either way.

Come on you redmen!!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 01, 2014, 06:23:00 PM
Unreal we're ahead att half-time after that!!! Our midfield is non-existant in this game and finally it should be clear that Henderson is just a media Product - hyped beyond recognition.

Rodger's need to take Coutinho as he's having a stinker really. He also needs to get the team a tad shorter as we're providing oceans of space in the center (just as we did against Swansea). We really need to play 4-5-1 in the 2nd half as 4-3-3 doesn't provide the Tools to break the run of play. Gerrard is totally lost.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 01, 2014, 10:13:47 PM
Impressive 2nd half, although neither Henderson, nor Coutinho improved. Can't Believe how lazy Coutinho look sometimes, it's like he doesn't care if the opposition scores.

Hats off for Suarez who put in a brilliant performance and had a finger or two in all goals. Also impressed by Allen and Sterling's cameo.

All in all a brutally important win that sees us take huge strides towards finishing 4th, if not better.

Well done you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on March 02, 2014, 11:12:03 AM
An interesting game where we rode our luck as usual...
great result though and being effectively 15 points clear of united and now 9 (10) clear of 5th is pretty damn fine as well. Without the brilliance of the sterling, suarez and sturridge we would be nowhere near top 4...suarez was brilliant yesterday and never stopped working..
defensive midfield is still the main problem as the defense needs that extra man to mop up...gerrard isn't doing it...but i thought allen did his job...
forget the players on the bench like aspas, alberto and moses...they need to be sold and high quality replacements are needed...then we'll have strength in depth...

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 02, 2014, 01:10:09 PM
What's that about "rode our luck as per usual". We've had, by far, more hits in the woodwork than any other team. It's not to ask too much our opponents hit the post intstead of scoring a once-in-a-lifetime-goal (se Ramsey, Shelvey et.al for reference). They had a 20 minute spell where we were played off the park but worked hard (except Henderson and Coutinho) to drag us over the half-time line. In the 2nd half there was practically only on team on the pitch, as there were the opening 20 so in the end it was a fair and just win.

Rodger's taking this club places despite promises from some he ain't up for it. This is the best season I've experienced since the advent of the PL.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 02, 2014, 02:19:52 PM
one more down - ten more cup finals to come.

rode our luck - the saints dominated chunks of the game.

but as usual, our offence leads the way.

suarez is world class - he takes us from average to top notch.

central midfield continues to be our key problem area.

other teams should not be bossing midfield like they do against us.  Gerrard is way way out of his depth.

if we had a top class central midfielder, we would walk this league title.

10 more cup finals...............we win them, we win the league.   Yesterday's win was a major hurdle overcome.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on March 02, 2014, 05:32:36 PM

Rodger's taking this club places despite promises from some he ain't up for it.


Rodgers is showing signs of improvement in some areas...most importantly in attack which is a great thing...
and he's realised all the 'total possession' stats effectively mean nothing...
but he still has much to tighten up on...like midfield and defense...
Martin, we're allowed to voice an opinion mate, cos the last time i looked we weren't in Soviet Anfield. And before criticising us who do want our team to tighten up glaring problems, keep in mind your post game contents for far more negatives than we can muster...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 04, 2014, 09:19:30 AM
Rodgers is showing signs of improvement in some areas...most importantly in attack which is a great thing...
and he's realised all the 'total possession' stats effectively mean nothing...
but he still has much to tighten up on...like midfield and defense...
Martin, we're allowed to voice an opinion mate, cos the last time i looked we weren't in Soviet Anfield. And before criticising us who do want our team to tighten up glaring problems, keep in mind your post game contents for far more negatives than we can muster...

Bart mate, sorry if you got the feeling I didn't allow you your opinion. That was never my intention. Always thought some didn't give him a fair crack at the whip and got too personal too soon when "criticising" him. That's all.

Yes, I'm negative at times. Can't help it, and, come to think of it, why should I? But I would like to think I also am willing to give cred where it's due.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 16, 2014, 12:19:23 PM
get ready to rumble.

either our title hopes end today - or United's dream of Champions League football ends.

I hope we hit them hard from the start.

But I fear Gerrard - and his defensive midfield role.  Type of game where he will feck up.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 16, 2014, 01:27:49 PM
I want to predict Liverpool winning 2-1

but I fear a 2-2
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 16, 2014, 02:21:26 PM
Very good first half. It really is a team game today with no player standing out bar, possibly, Gerrard (soz Dude  :D ). Henderson needs to come off though. He seem to struggle with it mentally and offers next to nothing at either end. Sterling started brilliantly and so did Allen. Lets hope we can keep playing like this in the 2nd half.

Come on you redmen!!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 16, 2014, 02:58:57 PM
2-0 up - yehaaaaa.

note how my verbal kick up the a.r.s.e has worked wonders for captain marvel.

just need to keep it tight at the back for the final 30 mins, and let Suarez, Sterling and Sturridge - the 3 S's make hay on the counter (as United are now leaving big holes to exploit).


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 16, 2014, 03:31:09 PM
 :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

1 more cup final won

9 more cup finals to go.

if we win them all, we will be champs  IMHO

of course the 2 massive games are at home, v chelsea and v man city

but it is all in our own hands.

exciting times.

as for today - United now will not be taking part in CL football - for the first time since the second world war.

I hope Fergie was knocked off his perch today.  And you can print that. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 16, 2014, 04:08:12 PM
(http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Guardian/Pix/pictures/2014/3/16/1394983950118/Man-U-Liverpool-Live-036.jpg)

Celebrations for our third goal.

Anelka will feel hard done by.  :)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 16, 2014, 06:51:51 PM
Let us all take the hat off for our manager Brendan Rodgers who managed to make us titlecontenders in less than 2 full seasons. We were in it in 2009 but not in this way.

Brilliant performance which sends out a message. Cardiff away and Sunderland at home up next. We need to make sure we take advantage of our quality against those teams as nothing less than 6 points is acceptable.

Still think Henderson is the most overrated players since the dawn of this game. Utter rubbish.

Hail to Captain Marvel for putting in his best display of the season at the right time!!! Skrtel had a cracking game and was absolutely fantastic. Flanagan should be very happy not to be sent off while Sterling keeps improving by each game. Also, a special mention must go to Johnson who was absolutely fantastic today.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on March 16, 2014, 07:42:24 PM
Let us all take the hat off for our manager Brendan Rodgers who managed to make us titlecontenders in less than 2 full seasons. We were in it in 2009 but not in this way.

Brilliant performance which sends out a message. Cardiff away and Sunderland at home up next. We need to make sure we take advantage of our quality against those teams as nothing less than 6 points is acceptable.

Still think Henderson is the most overrated players since the dawn of this game. Utter rubbish.

Hail to Captain Marvel for putting in his best display of the season at the right time!!! Skrtel had a cracking game and was absolutely fantastic. Flanagan should be very happy not to be sent off while Sterling keeps improving by each game. Also, a special mention must go to Johnson who was absolutely fantastic today.

Come on you redmen!!!

Agreed Johnson was great today...makes a difference not playing with an injury...as was Allen...
and yes fair play to Rodgers on his ability to learn and adapt...we were in it in 2009 but there was fergies influence...a major factor methinks...
loved this game as i was calm throughout and while not perfect it was pretty fecking close...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 17, 2014, 10:58:56 AM
Agreed Johnson was great today...makes a difference not playing with an injury...as was Allen...
and yes fair play to Rodgers on his ability to learn and adapt...we were in it in 2009 but there was fergies influence...a major factor methinks...
loved this game as i was calm throughout and while not perfect it was pretty fecking close...

Good for you, you managed to stay calm. Don't know what it is. When I see a game live on telly it seems tight and can go either way. When I watch a replay (like I did last night) I realise there's no way this could've ended any other way.

Dude, I take notice how your constant advising of our captain has finally helped him.  :D Could you please to a bit of the same for Henderson?

We must not slip on the bananaskin that is Cardiff. Have seen their last 2 games and they've been very very unlucky to get nothing from them. The balance of average an'all I hope we remain as focused next weekend we were yesterday!

There's only one Brendan Rodgers, one Brendan Rodgers, there's only one Brendan Rodgers!!!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 18, 2014, 02:46:52 PM
Dude, I take notice how your constant advising of our captain has finally helped him.  :D Could you please to a bit of the same for Henderson?

 :D

cardiff up next (away), then two home games - sunderland and spurs.....then away to west ham.

all cup finals.

but if we can keep on winning, then we are going to take this down to the wire.

I don;t think I have seen a closer finish to the premiership in all my years.........4 clubs are still in it.

if only we had got the right decisions from refs when we lost at city and chelsea (2-1 in both cases) in december, we would be sitting on top of the pile now.

but we have nine games to go - win these 9 cup finals, and we are champs.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 19, 2014, 09:06:05 AM
:D

cardiff up next (away), then two home games - sunderland and spurs.....then away to west ham.

all cup finals.

but if we can keep on winning, then we are going to take this down to the wire.

I don;t think I have seen a closer finish to the premiership in all my years.........4 clubs are still in it.

if only we had got the right decisions from refs when we lost at city and chelsea (2-1 in both cases) in december, we would be sitting on top of the pile now.

but we have nine games to go - win these 9 cup finals, and we are champs.

Yes, it's a tad annoying we didn't get what we deserved during the festive period. Hopefully we'll get a return in the games to come. I am a bit worried Arsenal will beat Chelsea this weekend and what that will do to them. They do have a habit of being quite capable of putting long winning streaks in Place.

It pleases me to hear the players are already looking forward to the tricky Cardiff away game. Said it before, they've been very unlucky in the last couple of games, long may it continue. If we beat them they're doomed for relegation so they'll be up for it no doubt.

Sunderland and Tottenham at home I think are winnable whereas West Ham away could be a potential bananaskin. They're an unpredictable side either being able to win/draw away to hometeams or lose to relegation fodder.

As you say, if this block leaves a good return (at least 10 points) it'll no doubt go down to the wire.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on March 19, 2014, 10:29:50 AM
I hope Fergie was knocked off his perch today.  And you can print that.

First thing Monday morning I went to the local pet shop and bought two budgies, one the shop owner had called Fergie, the other Moyesy, strange coincidence, I realise. Anyway, I decided to have them all the same, as the cage at home was empty.
 The funniest thing happened when I put them in the cage. Fergie went and settled bang slap in the middle of the top perch (there are three perches all together). Moyesy flew around the cage for a while then sort of swooped down to land on the top perch but got it totally wrong and took Fergie straight off it (in what looked like a dive bombing action). Unfortunately they both had bad landings and are now both lying feet up, stiff as concrete on the base of the cage.

They were bought as a replacement for my last budgie, which was called Brendan, that managed to escape the cage and now has taken up residency in a neighbour's budgie cage.

I don't seem to have much luck with the birds, so I'll stick to the 'wine' and 'song'' in future, and David Coverdale can keep his 'women'.

(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHpxwwAAKm4 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHpxwwAAKm4) - for the 'uneducated'  ;D) 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JFS-91Qhwdw (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JFS-91Qhwdw) - do we recognise what Bernie Marsden's wearing (guitarist on the left as you look at stage)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 19, 2014, 11:01:45 AM
 ;D

Nice to hear from you Tes. It's been a while. Happy with proceedings?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on March 22, 2014, 02:53:42 PM
;D

Nice to hear from you Tes. It's been a while. Happy with proceedings?

At one end, yes. But we've still got the same problems at the other. It's why I haven't been on for a while. I got sick of banging on about the 'same old' all the time.

We've taken full advantage of no European football or cup runs (stroke of bad luck getting Arsenal in one and the Mancs in the other), and it's good to see Rodgers learning from last season's mistakes, credit to him for being able to do that, and his handling of the media has matured this season also.

With Arsenal getting whopped (4-0 as I write, sorry 6-0) by Chelsea, a win against Cardiff could see us consolidate third place.

I think it's unrealistic to expect us to win it this season and it would work against us next season as we wouldn't be able to match it when we'd have CL football (and traveling) to contend with. So finishing third (whether a point or two or just goal difference) behind City and maybe three points off Chelsea would show marked progress, but progress that we could realistically maintain again next season by consolidating ourselves in the top four (preferably top 3) whilst also attempting to get out of the group stages in the CL.

I'd much prefer us to make steady, solid progress that can be sustained year after year, than make rapid progress this year, only to see us drop back in the league because we have European football to contend with next season.

A third place finish would also help the owners to back Rodgers with funds, as we know we are definitely in the CL group stages. A 4th place finish would be so much more problematical and create too much uncertainty.

Considering the depth of our squad, the areas that need improving in the first 11 and the lack of depth beneath the areas of the first team that look good, third would be a superb achievement and one that we could solidify next season if the right purchases are made this Summer.

We have to learn to walk first. Finishing a close third this season with no European football, repeating it again next season whilst finishing closer to the eventual winner AND getting out of the group stage first time back in the CL since what seems like forever, would constitute sustainable progress and it's the sustainability of the progress we make which is the key thing.

I'd settle for scraping third on the last day of next season, with the same points gap between us and 1st, if we could add a trophy, as well as getting out of the group stages, even if we were to narrowly go out of the CL at the first knockout stage. It's all steady, solid progress, which will help build a better future. Much better than having a great season this season (missing out on the title by a point, but finishing comfortably second) but dropping back to struggling to return to the top four again next season because European football was to make such a huge difference to our league season.

I don't want to appear negative, but I'm seeing things this way because this season we were playing without European football, without half our squad playing off the back of a World Cup, our preseason wasn't as dis-jointed as this Summer's is likely to prove, and the World Cup always makes it harder to sign players.  Then there's the question mark over whether we will have enough funds to sign both the quality and quantity of players needed to allow us to replicate this season's league performance, with all the other factors in play that we didn't have this season.

So I'm looking at this and next season in combination, rather than just this season in isolation and how collectively they influence the picture going forward over the next 5-10 seasons.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 22, 2014, 03:30:54 PM
Flanagan and Agger's having a stinker first 30. Either or both needs to come off ASAP.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on March 22, 2014, 06:30:15 PM
At one end, yes. But we've still got the same problems at the other. It's why I haven't been on for a while. I got sick of banging on about the 'same old' all the time.

We've taken full advantage of no European football or cup runs (stroke of bad luck getting Arsenal in one and the Mancs in the other), and it's good to see Rodgers learning from last season's mistakes, credit to him for being able to do that, and his handling of the media has matured this season also.

With Arsenal getting whopped (4-0 as I write, sorry 6-0) by Chelsea, a win against Cardiff could see us consolidate third place.

I think it's unrealistic to expect us to win it this season and it would work against us next season as we wouldn't be able to match it when we'd have CL football (and traveling) to contend with. So finishing third (whether a point or two or just goal difference) behind City and maybe three points off Chelsea would show marked progress, but progress that we could realistically maintain again next season by consolidating ourselves in the top four (preferably top 3) whilst also attempting to get out of the group stages in the CL.

I'd much prefer us to make steady, solid progress that can be sustained year after year, than make rapid progress this year, only to see us drop back in the league because we have European football to contend with next season.

A third place finish would also help the owners to back Rodgers with funds, as we know we are definitely in the CL group stages. A 4th place finish would be so much more problematical and create too much uncertainty.

Considering the depth of our squad, the areas that need improving in the first 11 and the lack of depth beneath the areas of the first team that look good, third would be a superb achievement and one that we could solidify next season if the right purchases are made this Summer.

We have to learn to walk first. Finishing a close third this season with no European football, repeating it again next season whilst finishing closer to the eventual winner AND getting out of the group stage first time back in the CL since what seems like forever, would constitute sustainable progress and it's the sustainability of the progress we make which is the key thing.

I'd settle for scraping third on the last day of next season, with the same points gap between us and 1st, if we could add a trophy, as well as getting out of the group stages, even if we were to narrowly go out of the CL at the first knockout stage. It's all steady, solid progress, which will help build a better future. Much better than having a great season this season (missing out on the title by a point, but finishing comfortably second) but dropping back to struggling to return to the top four again next season because European football was to make such a huge difference to our league season.

I don't want to appear negative, but I'm seeing things this way because this season we were playing without European football, without half our squad playing off the back of a World Cup, our preseason wasn't as dis-jointed as this Summer's is likely to prove, and the World Cup always makes it harder to sign players.  Then there's the question mark over whether we will have enough funds to sign both the quality and quantity of players needed to allow us to replicate this season's league performance, with all the other factors in play that we didn't have this season.

So I'm looking at this and next season in combination, rather than just this season in isolation and how collectively they influence the picture going forward over the next 5-10 seasons.

No disrespect Tes but that stinks of negativity. We have an opportunity to do something this season and whilst we have that chance we must go for it and not think of the "what ifs" next season.

Also in regards to the defence we've had injuries to all the backline at one time or another this season whilst the teams around us have a settled back four. Certainly the full back area is one which needs major investment in however I think you're being a tad bit over critical.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on March 22, 2014, 09:09:16 PM
No disrespect Tes but that stinks of negativity. We have an opportunity to do something this season and whilst we have that chance we must go for it and not think of the "what ifs" next season.

Also in regards to the defence we've had injuries to all the backline at one time or another this season whilst the teams around us have a settled back four. Certainly the full back area is one which needs major investment in however I think you're being a tad bit over critical.

Thanks, Edward, non taken, mate. I did caveat the 'negativity' bit. I'm not saying "let's not", obviously. No one will underplay our name being on the League Championship roll of honour for 2013/14 because of 'any perceived advantage we may somehow have had', in the same way we've got 5 European Cups, even though the fifth was won on penalties etc, etc. Who remembers Bayern hitting the post when they were one up and uses that to diminish Taggart's 'treble'? (Apart from me  ;D).

I've no problems if you're satisfied with our central defenders but my heart's done no favours with Skrtel being a fixture. Agger I feel is 'too comfortable' - he reminds me of how Riise ended up and Toure was a free for a reason. I'm not being negative but it's the small details that ultimately end up being a difference maker. Ultimately, we score more than we give the opposition, so a win's, a win's, a win. And I won't complain about that.

You'll just have to put it down to the fact that I don't ever see things in isolation, but as part of something bigger. Conceding three goals against Cardiff City is no problem when we score six in reply - so I'll keep my thoughts about how it could relate to when Chelsea and Man City visit Anfield to myself, likewise the 'what ifs' when we we lead at Stamford Bridge and the Etihad, as they're discussions for another time I sense.  ;)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 22, 2014, 10:19:20 PM
At one end, yes. But we've still got the same problems at the other. It's why I haven't been on for a while. I got sick of banging on about the 'same old' all the time.

We've taken full advantage of no European football or cup runs (stroke of bad luck getting Arsenal in one and the Mancs in the other), and it's good to see Rodgers learning from last season's mistakes, credit to him for being able to do that, and his handling of the media has matured this season also.

With Arsenal getting whopped (4-0 as I write, sorry 6-0) by Chelsea, a win against Cardiff could see us consolidate third place.

I think it's unrealistic to expect us to win it this season and it would work against us next season as we wouldn't be able to match it when we'd have CL football (and traveling) to contend with. So finishing third (whether a point or two or just goal difference) behind City and maybe three points off Chelsea would show marked progress, but progress that we could realistically maintain again next season by consolidating ourselves in the top four (preferably top 3) whilst also attempting to get out of the group stages in the CL.

I'd much prefer us to make steady, solid progress that can be sustained year after year, than make rapid progress this year, only to see us drop back in the league because we have European football to contend with next season.

A third place finish would also help the owners to back Rodgers with funds, as we know we are definitely in the CL group stages. A 4th place finish would be so much more problematical and create too much uncertainty.

Considering the depth of our squad, the areas that need improving in the first 11 and the lack of depth beneath the areas of the first team that look good, third would be a superb achievement and one that we could solidify next season if the right purchases are made this Summer.

We have to learn to walk first. Finishing a close third this season with no European football, repeating it again next season whilst finishing closer to the eventual winner AND getting out of the group stage first time back in the CL since what seems like forever, would constitute sustainable progress and it's the sustainability of the progress we make which is the key thing.

I'd settle for scraping third on the last day of next season, with the same points gap between us and 1st, if we could add a trophy, as well as getting out of the group stages, even if we were to narrowly go out of the CL at the first knockout stage. It's all steady, solid progress, which will help build a better future. Much better than having a great season this season (missing out on the title by a point, but finishing comfortably second) but dropping back to struggling to return to the top four again next season because European football was to make such a huge difference to our league season.

I don't want to appear negative, but I'm seeing things this way because this season we were playing without European football, without half our squad playing off the back of a World Cup, our preseason wasn't as dis-jointed as this Summer's is likely to prove, and the World Cup always makes it harder to sign players.  Then there's the question mark over whether we will have enough funds to sign both the quality and quantity of players needed to allow us to replicate this season's league performance, with all the other factors in play that we didn't have this season.

So I'm looking at this and next season in combination, rather than just this season in isolation and how collectively they influence the picture going forward over the next 5-10 seasons.

Sorry mate but I don't agree one bit with that. This idea you seem to have footy is a linear is misguided, at best, I think. I don't think you're acknowledging at all the progress Rodgers and the players have done this season (about a year ago this forum was high on telling anyone willing to listen how we'd be in the same position a year from now simply beause Rafa wasn't the manager). We're playing a football I haven't seen in over 2 decades and the neutrals are watching us in awe, journous are talking about us with utter respect, the travelling kop is singing "we're gonna win the league" with a confidence they didn't have 5 years ago. What more could you ask for really? You really shold embrace this moment rather than speculating on things no one can have a realistic take on today.

Again mate. Spurs 5-0, Everton 4-0, Arsenal 5-1, So'ton 3-0. United 3-0. I know I am proud as fork and even if we drop back next season, what we're doing right now will carry this club for a decade so lets just sit down, have a beer and enjoy this crazy rise. 6-3 against Cardiff. We're so good it's unbelieveable thanks to Rodgers genius.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on March 22, 2014, 10:23:09 PM
Let me put it another way. Before the first ball of the season had been kicked, looking at everything, funds available, squad strengths, new signings, experience of the relative managers, past performance over the previous two seasons, all the pros and cons, the amount of ground and points to make up, and all the mass of relevant factors I've omitted, finishing fifth and getting back into Europe, finishing above two teams we'd failed to finish above under two different managers, was the size of the task, just to get back to having European football of any sort at Anfield.

Now, I'll be as sick as a dead dog if we're facing a CL qualifier next season. I don't want 2013/14 to join 2008/09, 2001/02, 2000/01 (possibly, though not for quite the same reason as the others) and 1996-97 in looking to be the start of something then proving to be mere pinnacles of the few years either side.

Read: http://www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2007/feb/15/onsecondthoughtsroyevans (http://www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2007/feb/15/onsecondthoughtsroyevans)

Paragraphs 4 onwards perfectly encapsulates who we are (hopefully were) and what we've become (hopefully became) since 1990. It's because I'm desperate to leave it behind that I see it as I do.

Let the Blackburns and Newcastles have the one seasons in the sun. We want to get back to having an all year round tan again.

Talking of (fake) tan (sorry Martin and 224, old habits die hard  ;D), before the owners think of budgets and Summer signings, the manager's two year extension should be sorted the day after the season ends. For purposes of stability of course, you understand.  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 22, 2014, 10:27:35 PM
Thanks, Edward, non taken, mate. I did caveat the 'negativity' bit. I'm not saying "let's not", obviously. No one will underplay our name being on the League Championship roll of honour for 2013/14 because of 'any perceived advantage we may somehow have had', in the same way we've got 5 European Cups, even though the fifth was won on penalties etc, etc. Who remembers Bayern hitting the post when they were one up and uses that to diminish Taggart's 'treble'? (Apart from me  ;D).

I've no problems if you're satisfied with our central defenders but my heart's done no favours with Skrtel being a fixture. Agger I feel is 'too comfortable' - he reminds me of how Riise ended up and Toure was a free for a reason. I'm not being negative but it's the small details that ultimately end up being a difference maker. Ultimately, we score more than we give the opposition, so a win's, a win's, a win. And I won't complain about that.

You'll just have to put it down to the fact that I don't ever see things in isolation, but as part of something bigger. Conceding three goals against Cardiff City is no problem when we score six in reply - so I'll keep my thoughts about how it could relate to when Chelsea and Man City visit Anfield to myself, likewise the 'what ifs' when we we lead at Stamford Bridge and the Etihad, as they're discussions for another time I sense.  ;)

Few, if any teams, have performed like we did at SB and the Etihad. Remember it was in the span of 3 days. So robbed  at the Bridge by Webb denying us a peno. Also hade a legitimate call at Eitihad. I fell most people thought we got away from those game  with less than we  deserved. Agree with you on Agger and Skrtel. At the same time we need to look at the TEAM and how it has evolved over the past 12 months. It's incredible really. It's like we don't care when we conded against Cardiff knowing we'll outscore them. Few other team has that mental strength and is the reason I won't rule us out of winning the title just yet.

City will play United and Arsenal away next week. If they win both it'll be difficult, if they drop Points in either or both it's game on indeed. Chelsea play Pulis' CP away befor hosting Stoke. We'll see how it goes.

Haven't been this happy since the 80s really. :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 22, 2014, 10:40:25 PM
Let me put it another way. Before the first ball of the season had been kicked, looking at everything, funds available, squad strengths, new signings, experience of the relative managers, past performance over the previous two seasons, all the pros and cons, the amount of ground and points to make up, and all the mass of relevant factors I've omitted, finishing fifth and getting back into Europe, finishing above two teams we'd failed to finish above under two different managers, was the size of the task, just to get back to having European football of any sort at Anfield.

Now, I'll be as sick as a dead dog if we're facing a CL qualifier next season. I don't want 2013/14 to join 2008/09, 2001/02, 2000/01 (possibly, though not for quite the same reason as the others) and 1996-97 in looking to be the start of something then proving to be mere pinnacles of the few years either side.

Read: http://www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2007/feb/15/onsecondthoughtsroyevans (http://www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2007/feb/15/onsecondthoughtsroyevans)

Paragraphs 4 onwards perfectly encapsulates who we are (hopefully were) and what we've become (hopefully became) since 1990. It's because I'm desperate to leave it behind that I see it as I do.

Let the Blackburns and Newcastles have the one seasons in the sun. We want to get back to having an all year round tan again.

Talking of (fake) tan (sorry Martin and 224, old habits die hard  ;D), before the owners think of budgets and Summer signings, the manager's two year extension should be sorted the day after the season ends. For purposes of stability of course, you understand.  ;D

Been quite hard on the ale tonight so my Swenglish might be worse than usual.  ;D I do understand where you come from Tes, as I more often than not share the same feeling it's just another false dawn (I am extremly weary of predicting results or outcomes at other forums as a way to avoid jinxing it). But today it struck me it isn't just Another 01/02 or 08/09. At half time one of the Swedish pundits (who I hold in very high regard) said in relation to the question whether the 2-2 result was us cracking under the pressure of being title contenders: "What impresses me the most this half is the fact Liverpool seem completely unmoved by conceding 2 to Cardiff. They seem to accept they will concede a goal or two here and there knowing and believing full well they're capable to outscore the opponent." That's when I realised Rodger's has managed to take the team to a level that will ensure us this isn't a one off. And before you know it we were 4-2 up and it was game over. We may not win it but I have the feeling Rodgers has managed to exorcist the ghosts of the past. He's made it a "thing" to wear the Liverbird on the chest. For that I am humble and grateful irrespective of how the rest of the season pans out.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on March 22, 2014, 10:51:56 PM
Sorry mate but I don't agree one bit with that. This idea you seem to have footy is a linear is misguided, at best, I think. I don't think you're acknowledging at all the progress Rodgers and the players have done this season (about a year ago this forum was high on telling anyone willing to listen how we'd be in the same position a year from now simply beause Rafa wasn't the manager). We're playing a football I haven't seen in over 2 decades and the neutrals are watching us in awe, journous are talking about us with utter respect, the travelling kop is singing "we're gonna win the league" with a confidence they didn't have 5 years ago. What more could you ask for really? You really shold embrace this moment rather than speculating on things no one can have a realistic take on today.

Again mate. Spurs 5-0, Everton 4-0, Arsenal 5-1, So'ton 3-0. United 3-0. I know I am proud as fork and even if we drop back next season, what we're doing right now will carry this club for a decade so lets just sit down, have a beer and enjoy this crazy rise. 6-3 against Cardiff. We're so good it's unbelieveable thanks to Rodgers genius.

Thanks, Martin. Home, sweet, home. If only football was as simple as being mere linear.  ;D

I agree with you that going forward we're the nearest we've been to the red machine we once were since we stopped being the Red sea that swept away all in it's path. The bit about journos is the only downside to the whole ride. It was sickening reading Martin 'Bluto' Samuels the other day defending us against all the Manc comments in the Mail. They've been glad enough to stick the knife in, now they're inviting us round for dinner to eat with those same knives.

Anywho...........good to see you're well Martin. Give my regards to Rofa.  ;D

I feel sooooooooooooo misunderstood. I yearn for the days of losing away to the likes of the newly promoted Cardiffs and Hull Citys of this world. Wait a minu.......t........................e.. .....................didn't we................... ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on March 22, 2014, 11:04:28 PM
It's a bit like going all out to get more p!ssed than you ever have before, just to see how far you can take it and just how much alcohol the human body really can take, but at the same knowing and having to face up to the fact you may face the most absolute Motherf@cka of a hangover, feeling things you didn't think it was humanly possible to have to feel and still actually be alive to feel them.

Still, I guess it could be worse. Being a Manc fan for example. Their hangover could become excruciating.

And as Martin mentioned journos. Isn't it strange how they're not mentioning all the things we've always said about Taggart's unholy influence on English football, all being born out in less than one season. My ears are ringing from their silence.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on March 24, 2014, 01:24:55 PM
Certainly the full back area is one which needs major investment

So who should we be looking at for the fullback positions? And what needs to happen re Johnson's contract situation, especially with Real supposedly sniffing around?

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on March 24, 2014, 06:00:22 PM
So who should we be looking at for the fullback positions? And what needs to happen re Johnson's contract situation, especially with Real supposedly sniffing around?

Real sniffing around who? Johnson?!?!  hahaha doubt that when they have Carvajhal and Ramos.

I would offer Johnson another contract but on reduced terms but with better incentives.

I'd have Flanagan and Enrique as our back up full backs and Johnson on the right means we need a left back. I'd target a number of left backs that are attainable to us:- Ricardo Rodriguez from Wolfsberg, De Sciglio at Milan, Ansaldi at Zenit, Ben Davies at Swansea. Hell I'd even offer Ashley Cole a 1 year deal.

My dream signing would be De Sciglio but imo he wouldn't leave Milan for another couple of years. My next preference would be Rodriguez.

For me Luke Shaw is unattainable. He is Chelsea bound imo.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 25, 2014, 12:20:21 PM
United!

Damn, that felt good!  :D

The mere thing I'm supporting United to win to help us is Amazing.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on March 25, 2014, 12:42:06 PM
United!

Damn, that felt good!  :D

The mere thing I'm supporting United to win to help us is Amazing.

Never.

Amen.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on March 25, 2014, 01:28:52 PM
United!

Damn, that felt good!  :D

The mere thing I'm supporting United to win to help us is Amazing.

The moment we start supporting the enemy is the moment we are truly lost.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 25, 2014, 08:42:36 PM
So, given the choice between them losing a derby and us winning no 19 you'd prefer the former, right? Not sure I'm the one who's lost to be honest, mate.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on March 25, 2014, 09:07:32 PM
So, given the choice between them losing a derby and us winning no 19 you'd prefer the former, right? Not sure I'm the one who's lost to be honest, mate.

Martin, absolutely yes....united beating city was never on the cards....and the moment we start whoring our selves out to the manure scum is the day i stop believing...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 25, 2014, 11:49:32 PM
First thing Monday morning I went to the local pet shop and bought two budgies, one the shop owner had called Fergie, the other Moyesy, strange coincidence, I realise. Anyway, I decided to have them all the same, as the cage at home was empty.
 The funniest thing happened when I put them in the cage. Fergie went and settled bang slap in the middle of the top perch (there are three perches all together). Moyesy flew around the cage for a while then sort of swooped down to land on the top perch but got it totally wrong and took Fergie straight off it (in what looked like a dive bombing action). Unfortunately they both had bad landings and are now both lying feet up, stiff as concrete on the base of the cage.

They were bought as a replacement for my last budgie, which was called Brendan, that managed to escape the cage and now has taken up residency in a neighbour's budgie cage.

I don't seem to have much luck with the birds, so I'll stick to the 'wine' and 'song'' in future, and David Coverdale can keep his 'women'.

(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHpxwwAAKm4 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHpxwwAAKm4) - for the 'uneducated'  ;D ) 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JFS-91Qhwdw (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JFS-91Qhwdw) - do we recognise what Bernie Marsden's wearing (guitarist on the left as you look at stage)


 :D :D :D

great to see you back, Tes.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 25, 2014, 11:55:04 PM
8 cup finals left.

but disappointed that City didn't drop something tonight.

How bad are friggen United.    How dire are they.  They go from 1st to nowhere, ten minutes after Fergie leaves.  Agent Moyes is one of Liverpool's finest agents.  We bedded him in at Goodison, for a decade, before unleashing him on Old Trafford.

Back to the title race - But as well as us beating them at Anfield, City need to drop points in another game. 

But even if last day nerves feck em up, that will suffice.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 26, 2014, 11:01:21 AM
How bad are friggen United.    How dire are they.  They go from 1st to nowhere, ten minutes after Fergie leaves.  Agent Moyes is one of Liverpool's finest agents.  We bedded him in at Goodison, for a decade, before unleashing him on Old Trafford.

 ;D ;D ;D

As you say, too bad United couldn't ask at least a question of their neighbours. Nor do I nurse any hopes the specialist in failures can help out at the weekend. The only positive is that 3rd and automatic qualification is all but guaranteed.

Dead nervous our 3 away wins has made us complacent towards Sunderland. At the same time I'd be surprised if Rodger's hasn't reminded the players those wins count for nothing if we throw it away tonite.

I'd like to see 2 changes: Sakho for Agger and Sterling for Coutinho.

Come on your redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 26, 2014, 08:54:17 PM
Very poor half. We don't look up for it, complacent making it increasingly easy for Sunderland to manage the parked bus. So fed up with Sturridge's indifferent and lazy attitude. I don't know about this guy really.

Kevin Friend isn't having his game of his career managing somehow to keep Vergini on the pitch for 2nd half.

We're too one dimensional and need to penetratet better. 1 shot on goal in the first half against Sunderland when you play to stay in the race for the title just isn't good enough by any standards.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 27, 2014, 07:03:54 PM
;D ;D ;D

As you say, too bad United couldn't ask at least a question of their neighbours. Nor do I nurse any hopes the specialist in failures can help out at the weekend. The only positive is that 3rd and automatic qualification is all but guaranteed.

Dead nervous our 3 away wins has made us complacent towards Sunderland.

We're too one dimensional and need to penetrate better.

one more down......seven more cup finals to go.

a good team can scrap, and dig out a result when needs be, and we did that last night.

we were fortunate.

I hope Gerrard does not take on a major role in these final games - because if he does, it means we are behind and trying to recover a game.

We have a tough game on Sunday.  But if we win, we put off our day of reckoning a bit longer.

Chelsea will be a massive game.  But if we win our 7 final games, the maths say we finish above them.

It is City that need to slip up one day soon.  They are rolling on a sea of confidence right now. 

But they have some tests to come.

And wouldn't it be delightful, if on May 3rd, at Goodsion Park, Everton (fighting for that 4th Champions League place) BEAT City.......to put their scouse neighbours on top of the table.

But I am getting ahead of myself.....too many big games before we get near that point.



Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 27, 2014, 08:07:02 PM
one more down......seven more cup finals to go.

a good team can scrap, and dig out a result when needs be, and we did that last night.

we were fortunate.

I hope Gerrard does not take on a major role in these final games - because if he does, it means we are behind and trying to recover a game.

We have a tough game on Sunday.  But if we win, we put off our day of reckoning a bit longer.

Chelsea will be a massive game.  But if we win our 7 final games, the maths say we finish above them.

It is City that need to slip up one day soon.  They are rolling on a sea of confidence right now. 

But they have some tests to come.

And wouldn't it be delightful, if on May 3rd, at Goodsion Park, Everton (fighting for that 4th Champions League place) BEAT City.......to put their scouse neighbours on top of the table.

But I am getting ahead of myself.....too many big games before we get near that point.

Two very difficult games coming up before it's time to take on City. Spurs will look to get revenge for their disastrous display in December and the Hammers can get a point against any team on their day. So for me I can't look past these two games.

I don't know what to make of our performance last night. Either it will make us stronger as Carra suggests, or it will have woken us up from the dream dragging us back to our cautious best.

Being in this position really brings about double feelings. The level of nervousness before games and until they're decided is definitely not healthy.

Here's hoping we can raise our game considerably this Sunday.

Come on you redmen!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on March 28, 2014, 09:51:55 PM
There's certainly some interesting matches ahead.

We have it in our hands to a degree. Beat City, and neutralises 1 of their games in hand. The Chelsea game speaks for itself.

City are at Arsenal tomorrow, so let's hope Arsenal don't capitulate like they did against Chelsea.

City also have to go to Everton, so that could be a tricky one.

The Sunderland game showed that when the pressure was on, at home, against a team we're expected to beat, we coped with the pressure a ground out the 3 points - always a good sign.

We're not expected to win the league - Chelsea have the points, the squad, the experience and the manager. City have the squad, the games in hand and most of their squad have recent experience of winning the league.

So we need to take each game as it comes, forget about titles and do what we need to do to get the three points in the current game. If Skrtel and Agger can bring their 'A' game for a few weeks, then who knows.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 29, 2014, 10:32:59 PM
7 cup finals.

we win them all, we win the title.

today was a wonderful day for Liverpool.

But we have to keep focussed and beat Spurs tomorrow - not an easy task.

There will be several hiccups among the top 3, in these final weeks of the season.

But after today's results, it is now all in our hands.

I said, repeatedly in here, as far back as November and December, that we were playing title-winning football.

If we can just hold our nerve at this crucial juncture...


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on March 29, 2014, 10:59:26 PM
But after today's results, it is now all in our hands.

Exactly. Win tomorrow and we're 2 points ahead of Chelsea (same games played) and 4 ahead of Man City (played 2 games more).

Firstly, we have the points in the bag, always preferable over games in hand, that puts an extra dimension of pressure on City.

Beat them both at home, that's 5 ahead of Chelsea and 7 ahead of City (games in hand neutralised) if we match them point for point before and after, then we win our first league title since Sky invented football.

Whatever happens though, to finish in the top 3 this season surely has to be beyond even our most optimistic fans hopes last August.

And all this whilst still being crap at defending and sh!t at Summer transfer windows.  :D :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on March 29, 2014, 11:02:31 PM
and the Hammers can get a point against any team on their day.

Then we have to make sure it's our day not their's and that the former player curse doesn't rear it's ugly head that day - and they have enough of our former players. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on March 29, 2014, 11:21:45 PM
But we have to keep focussed and beat Spurs tomorrow - not an easy task.

They're the team with the league's best away record, so this is up there with the Chelsea and City games, and Adebeyour has been superb since Sherwood brought him back into the team - let's hope he fails his fitness test.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 30, 2014, 06:10:52 PM
Exactly. Win tomorrow and we're 2 points ahead of Chelsea (same games played) and 4 ahead of Man City (played 2 games more).

Firstly, we have the points in the bag, always preferable over games in hand, that puts an extra dimension of pressure on City.

Beat them both at home, that's 5 ahead of Chelsea and 7 ahead of City (games in hand neutralised) if we match them point for point before and after, then we win our first league title since Sky invented football.

Whatever happens though, to finish in the top 3 this season surely has to be beyond even our most optimistic fans hopes last August.

And all this whilst still being crap at defending and sh!t at Summer transfer windows.  :D :D

 :D

4-0

another cup final overcome.

6 more cup finals.

a great weekend of results for us.

I think winning 4 or 5, and drawing 1 or 2, may even suffice.

Chelsea may have blown it this weekend....what with their future CL involvement disrupting their run-in.

They will probably have to come to Anfield, needing to win.  Though their other games are very winnable, on paper - stoke, swansea, sunderland and cardiff (as well as playing ourselves at anfield).

City are now only 2 or 3 ahead of us re goal difference.  I'd like to wipe that goal difference out - so that they will need to be a point ahead of us, to beat us to the title.

Tough games to come.

But it is all in our hands now.  The Liverpool versus City game may well be the winner-takes-all game.   Though there are many upsets in closing days of the season.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on March 30, 2014, 09:32:38 PM
6 more cup finals.

6th April....West Ham (away)

13th April....Man City (home)   
 
20th April...Norwich (away)

27th April...Chelsea (home)

3rd May.....Crystal Palace (away) 
   
11th May....Newcastle (home)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on March 31, 2014, 11:53:07 AM
It'll be decided over the next 4 games as I genuinely believe we have what it takes to beat Palace away and Newcastle at home should we enter day 37 as leaders.

West Ham up next. Arguably the most inconsistent side in the leage, one month looking destined for relegation while the next cancelling Chelsea out on the Bridge. As it is they're 95 % certain of playing the PL next season so they won't have as much to play for us as. What worries me more is their (Allerdyce's) physical style will cost us in terms of injuries. A too physical game would also threaten Gerrard to pick up his 10th yellow losing him for the City game.

Other than that I mean that yesterday's performance was the best of the season thus far. Questions were being raised whether pressure was getting to us after our nervy finish against Sunderland on Wednesday. This was a team that was fighting for CL qualification (though I personally never thought they were good enough) and wanted revenge after the  mid-December trashing at the Lane. And we just dominate the game in a way I haven't seen us do many times this season. An incredibly impressive performance where no player let us down. I've had this feeling for a while once Coutinho starts to hit the target he will soon develop into one of the PL's greatest players. I hope his goal against Spurs was the beginning of that journey.

Too afraid to make any bold predictions beyond stating the obvious - 3rd is already in the bag which, in itself, is a testament to Rodgers and his often ridiculed philosophy. We got ourselves a new Shankly I say!!! :)

Also, it shall be interesting to see what So'ton can do at the Etihad. One very competent team able to beat any team on their day. Also, Hughes' Stoke at home isn't the easiest of fixtures.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 03, 2014, 01:20:24 AM
It's a good point about West Ham having little to play for. Unfortunately that won't kick in until after Sunday, as Fat Sham hates us with a passion, and there's Downing and Carroll with something to prove and Nolan always loves scoring against the team he supports.

Although I despise Tony Pulis and Crystal Palace (we've never done well at Selhurst Park and Wimbledon always made our record worse), I hope they're safe for the penultimate game, likewise with Newcastle, who have really gone off the boil for Pardew this season.

I'd settle for an unispiring 2-0 at Upton Park, and a pair of scrappy 1-0s against City and Chelsea.

What's the odds on another Luis hat trick against Norwich?

We need a favour off the bitters against City and I'd love them to draw against Arsenal in their next game as it will give them (in their eyes at least) a fighting chance for fourth and hopefully they'll be really up for the City game, even they know they'll be doing us a huge favour, there'll be as much in it for them too. Unfortunately, it's the penultimate game of the season, so we'll have to hope they fail to get fourrth on the last day of the season. Actually, that would be more fun.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 06, 2014, 03:51:21 PM
I hope we have our shooting boots on today.

West Ham are in a good run of form.  And Caroll would love to make fools of Agger and Skytrail.

Hope we can win, or at least avoid defeat.   An early goal, could see us score a few. 

Overall, Chelsea have a very easy run-in - if there is such a thing.  Apart from playing at Anfield, the other 4 games are very straightforward.    I suspect that we may have to beat them at Anfield.   

City's run-in is slightly more trying.

I reckon we have to win all our final 6 games.

Nothing less will do.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on April 06, 2014, 04:53:29 PM
Flanagan needs to come off NOW! I'd fornicating rather see Jones as LB for 2n half. His pisspoor defending led to their corner and equaliser. Again the referee is killing our chances to win the title.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 06, 2014, 06:01:30 PM
wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

we have done it

away to west ham was always gonna be one of our toughest games - due to the physical nature of allardyce's sides

now it goes down to next Sunday.......super sunday, or suicide sunday!

if we could beat city at anfield (and swansea get a result at home to a tired CL-fecked Chelsea).

5 cup finals to go - one of the hardest ones was won today.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 06, 2014, 06:02:19 PM
BTW the standard of refereeing is woeful these days.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on April 06, 2014, 06:37:03 PM
Flanagan needs to come off NOW! I'd fornicating rather see Jones as LB for 2n half. His pisspoor defending led to their corner and equaliser. Again the referee is killing our chances to win the title.

Actually Martin I thought Flanagan had a good game today.

But for me our two stand out players were Henderson and Sakho. Sakho is a beast and his passing is bloody awesome. Henderson just keeps getting better and better. He is our engine room and made things tick for us.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on April 06, 2014, 07:00:52 PM
Personally i was not looking forward to the west ham game...so to win after their crappy equaliser was excellent...refs get worse and worse...gerrard and suarez were excellent today....
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 06, 2014, 07:31:56 PM
wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

we have done it

away to west ham was always gonna be one of our toughest games - due to the physical nature of allardyce's sides

now it goes down to next Sunday.......super sunday, or suicide sunday!

if we could beat city at anfield (and swansea get a result at home to a tired CL-fecked Chelsea).

5 cup finals to go - one of the hardest ones was won today.

We have a pretty poor record against London teams going back over a few years. That's two weeks running we've known a win puts us top, which in itself brings it's own form of pressure.
We had the crowd to help us last week, but this was very different, and because of all those things I'd say it was our best win of the season.

It's still City's to lose, but just as important as our result was Everton's. They are the form team below us and know they have everything to play for still, and as long as their results hold up, they could do us a massive favour by beating City in the penultimate game of the season, giving City little time to recover. They have a great chance of 5th, seeing as the Mancs are six points behind having also played a game more, and will believe they can get 4th, as they are a point behind Arsenal with a game in hand over the Gunners.

This could be the turning point of the season with Everton placing themselves where they have and us winning again.

It's all about belief and confidence now - something we will have as our sequence of consecutive wins continues and it could dent the other two teams morale if we keep responding to their attempted pressure with a win each time.

City's games in hand are home against Sunderland on Wed 16th April and home against Villa on Wed 7th May. Both are very, very winnable, making a win, no matter how, for us next Sunday, absolutely crucial.

If we beat City, it could also work in Sunderland's favour (and additionally our's) for the game after, and with Sunderland still in with a chance of escaping the drop due to their games in hand, we could help ourselves by helping Sunderland maybe knick a point against a demoralised City team.

City and Chelsea at home and Palace away (final trip to London of the season) are definitely the harder of the games left. Norwich, which is the game after the City one, is the biggest potential banana skin with them in 17th place and still not assured of avoiding the drop.

At least we have home advantage for the last game of the season, as do City, unlike Chelsea who are at Cardiff, who may be down by then, but that could see them relax with the pressure off.

Hopefully, being at home won't bring it's own pressure and the crowd will need to put their nerves aside and just focus on driving the team on, no matter what other scores may come through during the game. That I see as our biggest obstacle, that the crowd get nervy and it transmits to the players. The crowd will need to have their game of the season and treat like the old European nights and employ the spirit of Istanbul.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on April 06, 2014, 08:31:11 PM
BTW the standard of refereeing is woeful these days.

And here I was telling me mate before the game it's a good thing we got the best ref in the League for this game. Seriously disappointed with Taylor's decision to allow there goal. His only mistake in the game but what a crucial one it could've been.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on April 06, 2014, 08:35:21 PM
Actually Martin I thought Flanagan had a good game today.

But for me our two stand out players were Henderson and Sakho. Sakho is a beast and his passing is bloody awesome. Henderson just keeps getting better and better. He is our engine room and made things tick for us.

I would agree with you Ed on Henderson and Sakho. To think this was his first start in 13 games in arguably the hardest away game we played this calender year. He's a monster indeed and his passing is incredible. Big big plus to have him back now.

As for Flanagan I think your emotions is getting the better of you if you think he was good. Look at his game in the sequence that led to their extra-time corner. Time and again he was rounded with ease. Not good enough and I hope he's properly replaced in the summer. I don't care if he was born and bread in the Anfield area.

Oh, and Sturridge need to up his game. Been really poor the last couple of games. 3rd forward next season if he doesn't improve.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on April 06, 2014, 08:39:17 PM
Personally i was not looking forward to the west ham game...so to win after their crappy equaliser was excellent...refs get worse and worse...gerrard and suarez were excellent today....

My sentiments exactly. I think some of the criticism Dude blasted Gerrard's way over the last couple of seasons were fully justified. That's why watching him play his best footy during his long career at LFC over the last few months fills really makes it for me.

Suarez, what can you say. He is the best player I've seen in a red shirt since 1979 regardless of how we fare between now and the rest of the season. He was lost, now he's found his home. What a fantastic turn around. People can say whatever they want about Rodger's man-man skills re. Sterling and Henderson. His handling and transformation of Suarez says it all really. We got the best manager in Europe!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on April 06, 2014, 08:42:31 PM
We have a pretty poor record against London teams going back over a few years. That's two weeks running we've known a win puts us top, which in itself brings it's own form of pressure.
We had the crowd to help us last week, but this was very different, and because of all those things I'd say it was our best win of the season.

It's still City's to lose, but just as important as our result was Everton's. They are the form team below us and know they have everything to play for still, and as long as their results hold up, they could do us a massive favour by beating City in the penultimate game of the season, giving City little time to recover. They have a great chance of 5th, seeing as the Mancs are six points behind having also played a game more, and will believe they can get 4th, as they are a point behind Arsenal with a game in hand over the Gunners.

This could be the turning point of the season with Everton placing themselves where they have and us winning again.

It's all about belief and confidence now - something we will have as our sequence of consecutive wins continues and it could dent the other two teams morale if we keep responding to their attempted pressure with a win each time.

City's games in hand are home against Sunderland on Wed 16th April and home against Villa on Wed 7th May. Both are very, very winnable, making a win, no matter how, for us next Sunday, absolutely crucial.

If we beat City, it could also work in Sunderland's favour (and additionally our's) for the game after, and with Sunderland still in with a chance of escaping the drop due to their games in hand, we could help ourselves by helping Sunderland maybe knick a point against a demoralised City team.

City and Chelsea at home and Palace away (final trip to London of the season) are definitely the harder of the games left. Norwich, which is the game after the City one, is the biggest potential banana skin with them in 17th place and still not assured of avoiding the drop.

At least we have home advantage for the last game of the season, as do City, unlike Chelsea who are at Cardiff, who may be down by then, but that could see them relax with the pressure off.

Hopefully, being at home won't bring it's own pressure and the crowd will need to put their nerves aside and just focus on driving the team on, no matter what other scores may come through during the game. That I see as our biggest obstacle, that the crowd get nervy and it transmits to the players. The crowd will need to have their game of the season and treat like the old European nights and employ the spirit of Istanbul.

Many points there with which I agree Tes. My position is that if we beat City a draw against Chelsea will be enough provided we win the other 3 games.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 13, 2014, 10:25:57 AM
well this is it.

hold on to your hats.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on April 13, 2014, 12:08:14 PM
well this is it.

hold on to your hats.


Midfield is key. If we get Lucas in there we should be able to nullify the threat..might mean dropping sterling though until he comes on as an impact sub.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 13, 2014, 03:35:10 PM
Midfield is key. If we get Lucas in there we should be able to nullify the threat..might mean dropping sterling though until he comes on as an impact sub.

over, we win

3-2

crying here, so happy with emotion.

we really are in the driving seat now.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 13, 2014, 04:22:10 PM
(http://e2.365dm.com/14/04/800x600/Liverpool-end-of-match-celeb-v-Manchester-Cit_3120295.jpg)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on April 13, 2014, 04:22:36 PM
Not sure my heart can take it anymore...lol...mad game...
Good stuff though and our attack is awesome...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 13, 2014, 04:26:18 PM
Not sure my heart can take it anymore...lol...mad game...
Good stuff though and our attack is awesome...


same here - heart cannae take it.

i stayed in bed for the first half (6 hours behind here).

I got up and it was 5 mins into the second half - we were 2 up.

but within 10 mins, city were level.

i felt like going back to bed.

long long game to watch.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 13, 2014, 04:30:18 PM
how many games will Henderson miss?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on April 13, 2014, 04:32:20 PM
how many games will Henderson miss?

if its violent conduct it's 3 games...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 13, 2014, 04:34:26 PM
so he will miss 3 of the remaining 4.....norwich, palace and chelsea

he will be a big miss.

i can see us winning at norwich and the final game at home to newcastle.

but away at palace, and home to chelsea, will be ultra hard.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 13, 2014, 07:50:59 PM
how many games will Henderson miss?

It's definitely three - back for the Newcastle game. Lucas and Allen have possible points to prove to the manager, and Lucas normally saves his best games for Chelsea.

Imagine, if we could defend they'd have presented the league trophy to us today.  ;D

It's been a good weekend - Chelsea winning mean we still have to be just as focused, absolutely no let up (that could just prove to be to our advantage).
Everton winning keeps them in with a chance of 4th, which will probably mean more to their players, than doing us a favour by beating City in the penultimate game. Not so sure about their fans.
They beat City to help us win the league and Arsenal pip them to fourth on the last game of the season. Arsenal scrapping through against Wigan may give them renewed confidence for the league, giving Everton a real challenge, a making the City game crucial for them.

Norwich had their best away result for a while, only losing 1-0 at Fulham, which again could work in our favour as it should mean no complacency against a rejuvenated relagation fighter with a decent home record.

For me, the Palace game is the one I'm looking forward to least. Selhurst Park has never been a good ground for us, whether it was Palace or Wimbledon, and Pulis will have them playing like Wimbledon, and it's vital we either match City's points score that day or take advantage of an Everton victory. That could be the weekend that decides the title.

If there's a footballing equivalent of the Victoria Cross, then Rodgers deserves it - bravery or foolhardiness, whichever it is, it's getting us over the line in each game.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on April 14, 2014, 08:47:44 AM
I'm slightly disappointed with the results this weekend. Norwich somehow lost to Fulham. How they didn't win that one I will never know. So instead of facing a side on the safe side of things, we'll be the first hard test for them which is Always a bad thing. Their remaining games are us, United, Chelsea and Arsenal so there's every chance they may go down.

The importance of the Norwich game cannot be underestimated as a win will see Chelsea in a situation where they must beat us to have a chance rather than sitting out a dull 0-0 or 1-1 draw.

I dare not think beyond those two games. Up until So'ton away it was 4 game blocks, now it's blocks of 2. 6 against Norwich and Chelsea and I think we could survive a draw at Palace. But as Dude said, it'll be ultra hard.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on April 14, 2014, 05:10:53 PM
Well as we saw in the huddle the lads are all concentrated on the Norwich game so they'll be fully prepared.

We play palace on the Monday and City good the Goodison on the Saturday before, so if they drop points in that game then yes Martin is right we could take a draw at Selhurst park.

I'm equally as worried about the Palace game as well as the Chelsea game tbh. As we've a poor record against Pulis teams at his home ground.

But our mentality is amazing at the moment so I am confident we can get the job done.

Norwich played much more aggressively offensively against Fulham than they have done this due to their new manager not wanting to look like Hughton. If they play that way against us then they are in big trouble. Play like they have done most of the season and be more defensive and try to grind out a draw/win then we should beat them with our superior offense and defense.

Also Chelsea are at Cardiff last game of the season - which is no easy game especially if Cardiff need something to stay up. I expect Chelsea to thrash Sunderland 4-0 or 5-0. Plus beat Norwich at home 4-0 or 5-0. So they will need 6 points away from Stamford Bridge at Anfield and Cardiff to have any hope to win the league. Hopefully Bellars does us a favour  ;D

I also think Man City can easily drop points at Goodison and at Palace. Plus Villa and West Ham at home know how to counter attack.

Henderson though is a really big loss for the Chelsea game as we need to match their energy and dynamism in the middle as Matic and Ramires are both excellent. So we need Allen definitely.
Overall I am enjoying the moment and heeding our captains advice in thinking our next game is our biggest game and taking each game as it comes.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 14, 2014, 08:22:27 PM
We play palace on the Monday and City good the Goodison on the Saturday before, so if they drop points in that game then yes Martin is right we could take a draw at Selhurst park.

thanks, Edward.   That is a very good point and one I had not considered.

we will already know the Everton-City result, by the time we face Palace.

Nobody  IMHO will beat City - our only hope lies in Palace and/or Everton grabbing a draw from them (both away games for City).  City's season will turn on those back to back games in London and Merseyside. 

Two points lost at Goodison, would mean we can win three and draw one....to win the title.

There is so little margin for error.  One loss (or a couple of draws) and it could be curtains. 

My hope is that Palace and Everton will hole City's title bid below the waterline. 

And that we will ruin Chelsea's bid, with either a draw or victory, when they come to Anfield.

Chelsea are not playing well, and having trouble scoring goals.  Life will be very interesting if a tired and jaded Chelsea come to Anfield needing to win.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 14, 2014, 08:24:26 PM
The importance of the Norwich game cannot be underestimated as a win will see Chelsea in a situation where they must beat us to have a chance rather than sitting out a dull 0-0 or 1-1 draw.

I dare not think beyond those two games. Up until So'ton away it was 4 game blocks, now it's blocks of 2. 6 against Norwich and Chelsea and I think we could survive a draw at Palace. But as Dude said, it'll be ultra hard.

me too, Martin, I am thinking in chunks of two games, as well.

like you, I think Chelsea will come to Anfield, feeling they need to beat us (if only to stay the pace with City)

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 14, 2014, 08:29:26 PM
Norwich had their best away result for a while, only losing 1-0 at Fulham, which again could work in our favour as it should mean no complacency against a rejuvenated relagation fighter with a decent home record.

For me, the Palace game is the one I'm looking forward to least. Selhurst Park has never been a good ground for us, whether it was Palace or Wimbledon, and Pulis will have them playing like Wimbledon, and it's vital we either match City's points score that day or take advantage of an Everton victory.

I think Norwich should be there for the taking.  They are in dire straights. and have to come at us, and play football.  And they are a club well known for playing football the proper way (and not like Allardyce sides).

If we get an early goal, even one in the first half, then I think we could score 4 or 5.

Palace, as we all agree, is the real banana skin.

They are in a great run of form since the new year, and Pulis taking over.

I do worry that something new will pop up in these final stressful games - for example, a Gerrard booking, or a Suarez sending off.  Nerves are getting freyed, and I hope all our guys can keep their heads.



Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 14, 2014, 09:21:01 PM
Plus Villa and West Ham at home know how to counter attack.

Villa are dire. They are lucky they manage to scrape the points they did earlier in the season. 4 defeats on the trot and no Benteke.

Villa are the last team I hold any hope out for to 'help us'.

Martin makes a good point about Chelsea hoping to hold out for a draw at Anfield. Mourinho is exactly the type to try and negate our game with them and look to beat us over the other three games - they play three of the bottom four, two of them at home, and Cardiff could already be down by the last game of the season (which is the one away from home), and an ex-Manc is really going to want to do us a favour if there's 'nothing else' to 'play' for.

Norwich next and three points at stake. That's it. Forget titles. We can't win it by winning at Norwich but we could lose it (the title) by not. As usual, whoever the opposition, there's three points at stake, and that's all we need to focus on.

As Hansen says, you think about titles when the medal's in your hand.

Having said all that - damn, am I enjoying watching Sterling play at the moment. He's added an end product and his decision making is unrecognisable from last season. He's everything Tony Daley, and to a lesser extent, Laurie Cunningham, used to threaten to be.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 14, 2014, 10:10:07 PM
Martin makes a good point about Chelsea hoping to hold out for a draw at Anfield. Mourinho is exactly the type to try and negate our game with them and look to beat us over the other three games

I think Chelsea will come to Anfield knowing they have to win (and they also know they are depending on City slipping up).   Chelsea will come looking for a scrappy one goal victory.  But with our expansive play, I do not easily imagine how Chelsea will keep it tight.  But if we have to win it 7-6, then so-be-it.   But Chelsea are having major issues scoring goals.   

Henderson is a bad miss for that Chelsea game.  But even without the lad, I still think we can end their dreams that weekend.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 14, 2014, 10:37:30 PM
I think Chelsea will come to Anfield knowing they have to win (and they also know they are depending on City slipping up).   Chelsea will come looking for a scrappy one goal victory.  But with our expansive play, I do not easily imagine how Chelsea will keep it tight.  But if we have to win it 7-6, then so-be-it.   But Chelsea are having major issues scoring goals.   

Henderson is a bad miss for that Chelsea game.  But even without the lad, I still think we can end their dreams that weekend.

I see what you mean Dude, but what impressed me was the way Chelsea picked off the Arsenal attack recently. Granted, we're a more confident beast than Arsenal and more capable of running Terry and Cahill wragged than Arsenal's beige attack. Demba Ba has always scored in bursts, and he's looking like he's started one just at  the right time for them (2 in his last 2 games).

The games either side of the Chelsea game read much better for them (Sunderland and Norwich, both at home), than Norwich and Pulace away, read for us. Hopefully a good win in the CL Semi 1st leg, which is their last game before Anfield, will have Mourinho dreaming of bigger things for this season (becoming the first manager to win the CL with three different clubs and equally Sir Bob's haul of three).

No need to worry about a Gerrard yellow as we're past the cut off point, though Suarez needs to quit making the most of contact as it could just cost us a genuine penalty.

Now it's a case of just getting the three points, who cares how, just that we do.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 16, 2014, 08:42:49 PM
I see what you mean Dude, but what impressed me was the way Chelsea picked off the Arsenal attack recently. Granted, we're a more confident beast than Arsenal and more capable of running Terry and Cahill wragged than Arsenal's beige attack. Demba Ba has always scored in bursts, and he's looking like he's started one just at  the right time for them (2 in his last 2 games).

The games either side of the Chelsea game read much better for them (Sunderland and Norwich, both at home), than Norwich and Pulace away, read for us. Hopefully a good win in the CL Semi 1st leg, which is their last game before Anfield, will have Mourinho dreaming of bigger things for this season (becoming the first manager to win the CL with three different clubs and equally Sir Bob's haul of three).

No need to worry about a Gerrard yellow as we're past the cut off point, though Suarez needs to quit making the most of contact as it could just cost us a genuine penalty.

Now it's a case of just getting the three points, who cares how, just that we do.

thanks for clearing that up re Gerrard and another card.

yes, I hope Chelsea keep focussed on the CL semi final legs.

though Tes, if Chelsea should win at Anfield, then I think the title is theirs.........they are a dark horse on a dark race course, and could easily steam in on everybodys blindside.

Having said that, I think we will draw or beat them at Anfield.....if we beat them, their title race is over.

the two tough games for City fall together - away to Palace, and then away to Everton.   They could easily draw one, or even both.

three wins and a draw might well be enough for us.

if goal difference was not a factor - three wins and a loss at Palace, might have been enough.

if only we could hammer Norwich and/or Newcastle......that would negate the small goal difference issue with City.

first Norwich - three points essential.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 16, 2014, 08:45:07 PM
lovely to see and hear Borussia Dortmund's fans wave their YNWA scarves and sing our anthem, in remembrance for the 96.   

http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/hillsborough-disaster-borussia-dortmund-fans-3419234 (http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/hillsborough-disaster-borussia-dortmund-fans-3419234)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 16, 2014, 11:05:02 PM
 ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D

2 bloody 2!!!!!

City have messed up.

They now have to win all 5 of their remaining 5 and pray that we feck up.

ok, essential to get our three points v norwich.......and then at least draw with chelsea.

to be honest, if we have negotiated norwich, then i think if we beat chelsea, the title is ours.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 16, 2014, 11:47:12 PM
Palace beat Everton 3-2 at Woodison.  Just shows how much tougher our two games, either side of the Chelsea one, is than their (Chelsea's) two.

City's draw has given us some breathing space, but a draw against Chelsea and they are right back in it if they win their corresponding fixture, before they then go to Woodison with renewed belief, whilst we're away at the league's current form team Palace.

We still have arguably the hardest run in, especially has Palace have really hit form and Everton (for City) may be running out of steam.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 16, 2014, 11:54:24 PM
We still have arguably the hardest run in, especially has Palace have really hit form and Everton (for City) may be running out of steam.

true Tes.

but what I take from it, is that Palace now have sealed their survival, hitting 40 points tonight.

hopefully, they can take it easier from now on in.

tho as we both know, a team that plays with no pressure or anxiety, can be a nightmare to play against.

pity sunderland could not have held on for all three points!  ha

awesome night.....i think city are wobbling, on the ropes.....possibly out on their feet.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 16, 2014, 11:56:33 PM
if goal difference was not a factor - three wins and a loss at Palace, might have been enough.

City's goal difference is 3 better than ours. If we could overcome that at Norwich it would be great. It would leave City having to win their game in hand and try to get ahead again on goal difference, thereby essentially regaining one of the two points they dropped against Sunderland.

It will be interesting to see the team Mourinho puts out against Atletico, bearing in mind that we're the next game, and whether the result from that has a bearing on the team he chooses against us, with the return against Atletico the game after us.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 17, 2014, 12:05:48 AM
Hopefully Sunderland's draw tonight gives them confidence for the game against Chelsea on Saturday. A repeat of tonight would be great.

Also City's game on the 27th, when we play Chelsea, is away against Palace. Hopefully they can inadvertently make our task against them easier by beating City. If we've beaten Chelsea, and Palace could beat City, we could afford a blip against them and only draw, and it wouldn't harm our chances.

Interesting how Sunderland and Palace are having such a big say, and both us and Chelsea have our destiny in our own hands by playing each other.

Also Everton's defeat tonight may help us as there is now more importance on the City game for them.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 17, 2014, 12:10:12 AM
City's goal difference is 3 better than ours. If we could overcome that at Norwich it would be great. It would leave City having to win their game in hand and try to get ahead again on goal difference, thereby essentially regaining one of the two points they dropped against Sunderland.

It will be interesting to see the team Mourinho puts out against Atletico, bearing in mind that we're the next game, and whether the result from that has a bearing on the team he chooses against us, with the return against Atletico the game after us.

i think they will suffer, playing a massive semi in mid week, flying, and coming to anfield at the weekend.

the key thing now, is that chelsea do not win at anfield.

as long as we draw at minimum with them.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 17, 2014, 12:12:46 AM
Hopefully Sunderland's draw tonight gives them confidence for the game against Chelsea on Saturday. A repeat of tonight would be great.

Also City's game on the 27th, when we play Chelsea, is away against Palace. Hopefully they can inadvertently make our task against them easier by beating City. If we've beaten Chelsea, and Palace could beat City, we could afford a blip against them and only draw, and it wouldn't harm our chances.

Interesting how Sunderland and Palace are having such a big say, and both us and Chelsea have our destiny in our own hands by playing each other.

Also Everton's defeat tonight may help us as there is now more importance on the City game for them.

yes, by the time we play chelsea, things could be a lot clearer.

city could be out of it by that Sunday.

the chelsea game at anfield could turn out to effectively be a cup final.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 17, 2014, 12:19:56 AM
true Tes.

but what I take from it, is that Palace now have sealed their survival, hitting 40 points tonight.

hopefully, they can take it easier from now on in.

tho as we both know, a team that plays with no pressure or anxiety, can be a nightmare to play against.

pity Sunderland could not have held on for all three points!  ha

awesome night.....i think city are wobbling, on the ropes.....possibly out on their feet.

Dude, it's fascinating, isn't it. Tonight's draw, whilst making City look like they are on the ropes, really could go either way - they come out fighting and inspired, or they wilt and drop off.

Likewise with Palace.  They could want to finish the season on a high, or lay back and already be on the beach by the time they play us. Palace definitely look safe and we can help that cause by beating Norwich.
They are away at West Ham next and a point there and then at home against City will hopefully see them ease off totally, though if they do beat City at home, and after their recent home win against Chelsea, they may want to go for the hat trick, especially as we're their last home game and may wish to finish on a high.
Maybe a point against City would be the best thing all round, rather than a Palace victory, setting us up to be the hat trick win against the Top Three.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 17, 2014, 12:23:26 AM
the chelsea game at anfield could turn out to effectively be a cup final.

It definitely seems to be building towards that. Depending on City's results and our's against Norwich, a draw might suit us more than them, and 14 straight victories has never been done in the Premier League - that would be a great double to lay claim to.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 17, 2014, 12:26:04 AM
Dude, it's fascinating, isn't it.

Palace are away at West Ham next and a point there and then at home against City will hopefully see them ease off totally, though if they do beat City at home, and after their recent home win against Chelsea, they may want to go for the hat trick, especially as we're their last home game and may wish to finish on a high.
Maybe a point against City would be the best thing all round, rather than a Palace victory, setting us up to be the hat trick win against the Top Three.

agreed, fascinating, Tes.

Palace may finally sink City's campaign.

I bet any City supporter tonight is now looking at their final run-in with much more anxiety.

no Toure, no Kompany.......no energy, many points back......tired, emotionally and physically.

i think City will drop more points.

Chelsea at Anfield is key.

I hope we can keep our 11 men on the pitch, against the barstewards.   
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 17, 2014, 12:28:21 AM
It definitely seems to be building towards that. Depending on City's results and our's against Norwich, a draw might suit us more than them, and 14 straight victories has never been done in the Premier League - that would be a great double to lay claim to.

yes, priority is 3 points at Norwich.... the icing on the cake would be a 4 or 5 goal win (to negate the GD)

I'd LOVE it, if we could hammer Chelsea, to effectively take the title.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 17, 2014, 06:33:04 PM
worrisome

I looked late last night at the form of Norwich.

Norwich's problems are on the road.

at home, they have won 2, drawn 3 and lost 1, of their last six home games.  That's decent form.

they do not score or concede many at Carrow Road.....6 goals in those 6 home games.....4 for norwich and 2  for their opponents.

that tells me that they will be hard to break down.

if we could get ahead, they will have to open up and come at us.......meaning we could score a few.

otherwise, it could be a scrappy encounter with little between the sides.

I'd grab three points right now, from a one goal thriller.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 19, 2014, 07:29:25 PM
Borini

chelsea beaten at the bridge

our boy dun good!


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 19, 2014, 11:00:06 PM
otherwise, it could be a scrappy encounter with little between the sides.

A scruffy, scrappy, dire to watch 3 points, sounds OK to me. Norwich are much better at home than their league position suggests. 3 points and I couldn't care less how.

That would set us up nicely for next week.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 20, 2014, 12:49:36 PM
half-time

2 nil up, against Norwich.

sakho has given me a few heart in the mouth moments

norwich might get a man sent off in the second half, if they continue the way they are doing.  Two men on yellows - one of them fortunate not to have been sent off.

goal difference, Man City +54 ...........  Liverpool +53





Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 20, 2014, 01:55:45 PM
norwich 2 - liverpool 3

one more cup final won

we're almost there..........beat chelsea next Sunday, and we will have one hand on the premiership trophy.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 20, 2014, 04:20:35 PM
goal difference, Man City +54 ...........  Liverpool +53

We're making hard work of overcoming that advantage City have, but if we get past our next three opponents, no matter how or by what score, we're there. I think a scrappy, nervous win can sometimes boost confidence more as we get to learn we can still beat teams, even if we're not at our best.

Signing someone like Cardiff's David Marshall could be a good move to put Mignolet under real pressure for his place and if he loses it, there are a lot of keepers I'd rather not see before Marshall, who has been one of the best keepers in the league this season.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on April 20, 2014, 05:12:24 PM
Great game for the neutral. Not sure my heart can take it much more though!
Well on top for 15 mins and took a deserved lead. Then we seem to take the foot off the peddle and slacked off. They might have been thinking about the Chelsea game and taking it easy and so let Norwich back in.
Considering Chelsea now have a game in Madrid on tues night, then we'll be well prepared for sunday!
Hopefully Sturridge will be back as well...
A good 3 points. Job done.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 20, 2014, 05:36:03 PM
agreed, Tes.  Marshall may be a smart recruit this summer.  Though there will be a few clubs interested, especially if cardiff go down.

like you say, Barticus, we made hard work of it, after taking a 2 goal lead.

but I guess, no matter what, this was always likely to be a scrappy game.....with a team fighting for their lives.

another cup final negotiated......next Sunday, we get the chance to eliminate a tired and jaded Chelsea.  I hope Athleico give them the runaround in midweek.

Mourinho is in for one tough week - he could melt down spectacularly.

Indeed, I suspect the FA will throw the book at him, and chelsea after this weekend's events (plus a 4 matvch ban for their midfielder, Ramires)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 20, 2014, 05:42:01 PM
(http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Guardian/Pix/pictures/2014/4/20/1398007648274/f326177a-0d49-46a9-8879-96a2884af6fd-620x372.jpeg)

I love the fan, sitting beside the United dugout today.     ;D ;D ;D

With Everton 2 up, they are on Arsenal's tails for that 4th CL spot (only one point behind the gunners).

It will mean that City are in for a game when they head to Goodison.

I still hold out for this perfect scenario, where Everton beat City, to effectively hand us the title.




Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 20, 2014, 06:19:10 PM
(http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Guardian/Pix/pictures/2014/4/20/1398007374246/3eea36df-7dd1-417a-bf19-01098f57259b-460x324.jpeg)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 20, 2014, 07:52:37 PM
(http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/02887/Raheem_2887706b.jpg)

Manager of the Year - Brendan Rodgers

Player of the Year - Luis Suarez

Young Player of the Year - Raheem Sterling

Sterling has came on fantastically well this season - especially in these last few months.  He seems stronger, and more confident in his finishing.

I think having Suarez around as a teacher, is invaluable to the lad.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on April 21, 2014, 11:51:07 AM
I was very glad to see agger come on on 80 minutes, he certainly steadied the ship as sakho had pretty much lost it. Sakho has been a good signing but still has much to learn, i want agger and skrtel there though against Chelsea, experience heads amongst the mourinho shenanigans.
Agreed over competition for the goalkeeper post. Marshall perhaps or even Reina back? I know he's supposed to have burnt his bridges but so had Skrtel last year and now look at him.
 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 21, 2014, 04:15:57 PM
I was very glad to see agger come on on 80 minutes, he certainly steadied the ship as sakho had pretty much lost it. Sakho has been a good signing but still has much to learn, i want agger and skrtel there though against Chelsea, experience heads amongst the mourinho shenanigans.

absolutely.

i felt the exact same yesterday.

sakho can be great - but when in the heat of this title battle, we need experienced heads.....and the skrtel and agger partnership is vital......not only against chelsea, but against palace too.

i think we need to beat chelsea, because we will get precious little at palace.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 22, 2014, 05:34:12 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Sviu9l3bew (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Sviu9l3bew)


Louis Van Gaal.

rude barsteward.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 22, 2014, 09:13:30 PM
I still hold out for this perfect scenario, where Everton beat City, to effectively hand us the title, qualify for the CL, only to be humiliated in the qualifying round by some Finish part-timers or the like.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 22, 2014, 09:15:48 PM
Cech may be out of Sundays game. Schwarzer always has a blinder against us. Let's hope for that run to end.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 22, 2014, 10:04:40 PM
John Terry may be out injured too.

and they played 96 mins......so nice and tired, after their flight home from Spain.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on April 22, 2014, 11:12:53 PM
We have a suitable back up to Mignolet his name is Brad Jones. A younger gk like Marshall would be wanting first team football and any experienced gk we'd buy would be on more money than Jones so why do that?

I don't see the gk as a major issue really. Sure Mignolet has made mistakes but the are mistakes that can be fixed. If those mistakes are ones which couldn't be fixed then I'd be more inclined to seek a replacement but not now. His strengths outweigh his weaknesses.

We all know Chelsea will park the bus against us so its up to us to not play like Atletico tonight and cross the ball put to do what we do!

Mourinho only hates Barca more than us so don't expect a free ride or a weakened team.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 22, 2014, 11:13:24 PM
Schwarzer played well from all accounts, but if Terry's missing too and we can get an early goal and pin them back most of the first half, then we should get the result. Terry's more of an inspirational figurehead, so anything that prevents them rallying can't be bad.

Mourinho didn't get the decisive result he wanted and with Lampard and Obi Mikel out of the second leg, he may be tempted to play them to protect his other midfielders for next Wednesday.

Expect Mourinho to park the bus and settle for a repeat of tonight. That at least would ease the pressure on the defence, and with Sterling in the form he's in it could backfire on Mourinho.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 22, 2014, 11:36:58 PM
yes, he will have to park the bus and hope for a scrappy goal later.

I also think he may want a dirty game, a few heavy tackles, a lot of tempers up.   He will want us to lose our composure.....and also get a man sent off.

expect them to be trying to get us booked, get Suarez red carded etc.

all of mourinho's dark arts will be on display.

but as you say, if we get a goal, he has to come out to play.

with suarez, sturride (back i imagine) and sterling, I think we will open them up.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 23, 2014, 11:08:24 AM
I don't believe all the media hysteria about Mourinho picking a so-called weakened team. Injuries have arguably weakened the team, and he may play Lampard and Obi Mikel, as they are out on Wednesday, but that's hardly a weakened team.

Mourinho is too cute to place all his eggs in one basket, especially as an away goal for Atletico leaves them needing two goals, and they're hardly 'banging them in' at the moment. Neither do you just throw away all the hard work of the previous 35 games. He knows a win puts them right back in it, and it's only one game, but one game that allows them to remain in with a chance of doubling the amount of trophies on offer.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 23, 2014, 11:24:11 PM
I really can't see Mourinho giving up on the league. They've got two games to win still to win the CL, whereas they're only one more victory than that away from the PL title also.

If they win at Anfield, they're just 2 points behind us. We have to play Palace away, who could have beaten or drawn with City this weekend, whilst Chelsea have a home game against Norwich, who despite their recent improvement in performances, still aren't picking up the points and have a dreadful away record.

A Chelsea win and a City draw this weekend has the table looking like this:

Liverpool 80
Chelsea  78
Man City 75

Next weekend, we're away at Palace, Chelsea at home to Norwich, City away at Everton - a defeat for us, a win for Chelsea and a draw for City, none of which exactly require a huge stretch of the imagination and the table looks like this:

Chelsea    81
Liverpool  80
Man City   76

City should win at home to Villa on Wednesday 7th May, so we'd reach the last day of the season with Chelsea a point clear of us and two ahead of City.

They have Cardiff away, we have Newcastle at home and City have West Ham at home - is it so hard to see a win for all three of us?

Mourinho has many less savioury character traits, but I've never seen cowardice or defeatism as being amongst them. Also it would be disrespectful to the fans who have followed and supported them for the previous 35 games. They're not in a long run of successive wins which could come to an end, and a mini run of five successive wins (less than half the run we've put together) sees them win both competitions.
They've won at City this season in February and drawn at the Mancs and Arsenal, both with clean sheets and also Spurs, 1-1. Their only defeat to a top seven team is 1-0 away at Everton, and at home to those same teams, they've a 100% record, so one defeat, three draws and seven wins against the top seven - with a record like that, I find it hard to see Mourinho waving the white flag.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 23, 2014, 11:53:02 PM
Daniel Sturridge declares himself fit for Liverpool's title showdown against Chelsea on Sunday

http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpool-vs-chelsea-daniel-sturridge-3448439 (http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpool-vs-chelsea-daniel-sturridge-3448439)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 24, 2014, 12:06:15 AM
Mourinho has many less savioury character traits, but I've never seen cowardice or defeatism as being amongst them. Also it would be disrespectful to the fans who have followed and supported them for the previous 35 games. They're not in a long run of successive wins which could come to an end, and a mini run of five successive wins (less than half the run we've put together) sees them win both competitions.
They've won at City this season in February and drawn at the Mancs and Arsenal, both with clean sheets and also Spurs, 1-1. Their only defeat to a top seven team is 1-0 away at Everton, and at home to those same teams, they've a 100% record, so one defeat, three draws and seven wins against the top seven - with a record like that, I find it hard to see Mourinho waving the white flag.

chelsea need to win at anfield; nothing less will do

and they need to rely on either palace beating us; or palace and newcaste getting draws with us.

plus they have to rely on city slipping up too (which is very likely).

we will put chelsea to bed this weekend.

we need a maximum of 2 wins and 1 draw in these final three games, to take the title.

but City will likely drop points at palace and/or everton.....so most likely beating chelsea and newcastle will suffice for us.

apart from chelsea beating us on Sunday, my nightmare is City winning all their final games.....because if City were to do that, they would probably win the league.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 24, 2014, 12:07:59 AM
Daniel Sturridge declares himself fit for Liverpool's title showdown against Chelsea on Sunday

http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpool-vs-chelsea-daniel-sturridge-3448439 (http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpool-vs-chelsea-daniel-sturridge-3448439)

great news.

just wish henderson was available.

we beat chelsea, we have one hand on the trophy.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 24, 2014, 09:06:04 PM
chelsea need to win at anfield; nothing less will do

and they need to rely on either palace beating us; or palace and newcaste getting draws with us.

plus they have to rely on city slipping up too (which is very likely).

we will put chelsea to bed this weekend.

we need a maximum of 2 wins and 1 draw in these final three games, to take the title.

but City will likely drop points at palace and/or everton.....so most likely beating chelsea and newcastle will suffice for us.

apart from chelsea beating us on Sunday, my nightmare is City winning all their final games.....because if City were to do that, they would probably win the league.

If we can get a win, and I don't care how, against Chelsea, then I'd settle for a draw against Palace and then look to put Newcastle to the sword. Beating Chelsea, thereby removing them from the equation and securing second place at worst, would give us a boost for the last two games.

City will then have seen us beat both them and Chelsea and will know that nothing less than a win at Palace will then do, as they play after our result will be known. It just places a bit more pressure on them. They'll know that at that point they two games in hand, but will also know that they're no good unless both are won. We already have the points in the bag.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 25, 2014, 12:02:23 AM
If we can get a win, and I don't care how, against Chelsea, then I'd settle for a draw against Palace and then look to put Newcastle to the sword. Beating Chelsea, thereby removing them from the equation and securing second place at worst, would give us a boost for the last two games.

City will then have seen us beat both them and Chelsea and will know that nothing less than a win at Palace will then do, as they play after our result will be known. It just places a bit more pressure on them. They'll know that at that point they two games in hand, but will also know that they're no good unless both are won. We already have the points in the bag.

I am hoping for one more super weekend.

with us beating Chelsea, and then later on Sunday afternoon, Palace inflicting a mortal wound on City's title bid.

City are on the ropes......and I think Palace can knock them out.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on April 26, 2014, 08:45:24 PM
Nobody's mentioned Atkinson. The cad of cads who hates everything Liverpool. Dead worried he got this game as I'm sure he'll have a negative imact on it.

I just hope we win. 2 more weeks. I can't take it any longer.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 27, 2014, 02:24:50 PM
hope we can keep 11 men on the pitch.

and hope we can win.

losing would be the nightmare.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 27, 2014, 02:44:37 PM
a dangerous game is developing.

these final ten minutes of the first half, we need to put our foot on the ball and show some composure.

we are hurrying it in parts of the pitch, where we don;t need to hurry it.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 27, 2014, 02:53:10 PM
we are pressing this match a little too much.

one would think that we had to win the game, instead of chelsea.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 27, 2014, 02:55:35 PM
fuk it

fuk it

like I was predicting above, we were putting ourselves under needless pressure....doing stupid things in needless parts of the pitch.

dire dire mistake from gerrard.

we are handing this fecking game to chelsea......and because of inexperience.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 27, 2014, 03:27:19 PM
it's going exactly as mourinho would have wanted it.

and instead of chelsea having to chase the game (as they should always have been made to do), now we are fecking have to chase this game.

madness.

absolute madness.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 27, 2014, 04:02:49 PM
a nightmare day.

men against boys.

why in under feck were we chasing this game from the first minute.

is there nobody in our dugout with intelligence who can read a table, and understand that it was chelsea who had to chase the game.

we gave this game away......gave it away.

and once chelsea's old timers had their goal, we were never going to get back into it.

all we can now hope for is for palace to do us a favour against city.

I am gutted today - madness, absolute madness.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on April 27, 2014, 06:41:36 PM
a nightmare day.

men against boys.

why in under feck were we chasing this game from the first minute.

is there nobody in our dugout with intelligence who can read a table, and understand that it was chelsea who had to chase the game.

we gave this game away......gave it away.

and once chelsea's old timers had their goal, we were never going to get back into it.

all we can now hope for is for palace to do us a favour against city.

I am gutted today - madness, absolute madness.

sums it up...wtf was gerrard doing as the last man in defence?? Agger should have played.
And Rodgers should have told Gerrard to stop looking for the redemption crapola...cos he kept doing it.

A draw would have done us...and yet we kept looking for the win...naive.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on April 27, 2014, 07:01:47 PM
a nightmare day.

men against boys.

why in under feck were we chasing this game from the first minute.

is there nobody in our dugout with intelligence who can read a table, and understand that it was chelsea who had to chase the game.

we gave this game away......gave it away.

and once chelsea's old timers had their goal, we were never going to get back into it.

all we can now hope for is for palace to do us a favour against city.

I am gutted today - madness, absolute madness.

I'm gutted too but reckon your account is way way too harsh and unfair. They rode their luck for their opener and we're not the first team unable to break down that bus. I'm in tears as we lost the title today. It's so unfair and undeserving but that's how it is. I wish Chelsea, Mourinho and his players the worst. I hate them. I hate their arrogance, their dishonesty. I hope they lose and I hope Abramovich gives up on their club.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 27, 2014, 07:24:14 PM
wtf was gerrard doing as the last man in defence??

Agger should have played.

And Rodgers should have told Gerrard to stop looking for the redemption crapola...cos he kept doing it.

yes, I was very surprised to not see Agger at the start.

like you, Bart, I was spitting blood when I saw Gerard as our last man.   I have said for ten years plus, that Gerrard is not a sweeper nor a defender.  Throughout his career, he has been an accident waiting to happen, when playing near the back.

Well this time, his howler may have cost us the title.

And for the second half, as you say, he was trying his endless redemption stuff......taking shots from 25 and 30 yards, and throwing away much needed good possession in the Chelsea third.

I wondered at the time, if he would have been better hauling the Chelsea lad down, and taking his red card.

I think we possibly would have had a better chance of getting something from the game, if we had had to play the second half without him (and it still been nil-nil).

Today was a day for cool heads and composure.  It was a day for knocking the ball around, keeping possession, wasting time here and there, and getting inside Chelseas' heads.

Today was a day for senior players to show composure.  The title was never going to be won today, but it could be lost.   Big game intelligence and composure was the order of the day.

Instead, our kids served it on a plate to them.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on April 27, 2014, 07:31:19 PM
I'm gutted too but reckon your account is way way too harsh and unfair. They rode their luck for their opener and we're not the first team unable to break down that bus.

but why did we have to get past the bus?

THEY needed to beat us.  A draw was a result that would have ended their title pursuit.

We could have sat tight and let them waste their own time.  Instead we played dangerous passes in bad areas of the pitch.   i saw the goal coming......see above, when i was posting during the game.    We were an accident waiting to happen.

I thought our naivety was on display today - and/or very limited tactics.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on April 28, 2014, 06:48:12 AM
Does it matter really? It's over. We lost 1 game in the last 16 and it just feels so unfair that's gonna cost us the title. Unbelieveable really City's gonna win it on GD once more. Luck and money seems to go hand in hand really. Totally shattered!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 28, 2014, 01:52:59 PM
Unbelieveable really City's gonna win it on GD once more.

Is it really?

Reply #2317 on: April 07, 2013, 06:19:55 PM

It would be interesting to look at all the games we conceded two or more in a see if we'd conceded one less, how many differences to the result that would be.

Straight off the top of my head, with the actual points in brackets - 3 points away to Everton (1 point), 3 points away to Arsenal (1), 3 points away to Man City (1), 1 point away to the Mancs (0), 1 point at Home to the Mancs (0), 3 points at home to Man City (1),  1 point Spurs away (0).

So that's 11 points simply by conceding 1 less goal when we conceded 2 or more.

It shows where the major problem is and has been all season and that's the biggest disappointment that we've not even seen a very gradual improvement after the first 10 games (a bit of bedding in allowance, which is still more than a quarter of the season).

I wrote that more than a year ago.

Think how different the table looks, bearing in mind what I say about conceding 2 or more goals being crucial.

Everton away 2-0 up, Chelsea away 1-0 up, City away 1-0 up.

Not conceding 2 or more goals, in other words, only conceding once, and not a clean sheet needed, gives us 4 more points, City and Chelsea 2 less apiece. Note the games I've selected in both posts.
I'm not talking about the cannon fodder, where we can outscore them by 2 or 3, or where a clean sheet could reasonably be expected, I'm talking about defending when it really matters.

Our goal difference sucks because we've conceded too many goals despite the wins.

Whenever I raise the subject of our defence, I'm being negative or unfair. I don't expect it will be any different this time.

City have had their wobble, come through and have sufficient games left.
Chelsea have hit form every time it really matters this season.
Palace won't be as bad as they were against City.
Everton have probably just run out of steam.

Final table:

City 86
Chelsea 84
Us 83

The only hope is that now the winning run is at an end, and the gap has been reduced, there's no room for even a hint of complacency, which can happen, and we come back strong and take 6 points from the next two games, and Everton grind out a draw against City.
I hold out no hope of Villa (who are dire, yet still scored the magical two goals against us at Anfield) or West Ham, who are already on the beach as the 1-0 defeat at WBA showed, doing us any favours.

Third would be a truly amazing achievement and to be so close to the winners (should it not be us), and to have challenged for the title, and all the way to the end of the season, is far beyond what even the most optimistic amongst us could have hoped for.

We may not have had European football, but neither do we have a deep squad. We've probably got 15 players who you would really say were good enough to challenge, and then look at the chasm in experience between the squads and the managers.

We had a bad day, let's finish strongly and see where that gets us.

Now maybe the media will be a bit more realistic in their pronouncements.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 28, 2014, 02:13:33 PM
I've just read a rather interesting stat - of our last 50 goals, Suarez has only scored 8 of them. That augurs well for next season. So much for a one (or even two) man team.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 28, 2014, 04:05:53 PM
City are now the favourites, despite us still being top by two points - maybe that takes the pressure off somewhat.

Pulis is talking up the game - shame he didn't do the same for the City one.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 28, 2014, 04:07:18 PM
Sort of sums up yesterday's game:


 (https://i.imgflip.com/8escf.gif)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 28, 2014, 10:51:55 PM
Arsenal beat Newcastle 3-0 tonight - hopefully our next banana skin won't be Pardew being sacked before the end of the season.

Everton are now 4 points behind Arsenal and they both have two games to play - however they need to look over their shoulder to protect their potential 5th place as Spurs are only three points behind with two to play, and even the Mancs could pip them, although nine points behind, they have three games to play and their goal difference is only one less than Everton's.

Spurs are at West Ham on Saturday, then finish at home to the hapless Villa - potentially four points.
Everton need a point at the very least with having a hugely better goal difference than Spurs and they finish the season away at Hull, who's players will all be playing for an FA Cup final place.

Hopefully they'll fancy their chances of getting a point at home in front of their own crowd than away at Hull.

In our favour is the fact that Spurs play at 12.45pm, and Everton at 5.30pm, so hopefully a Spurs win earlier in the day will inspire The Toffees.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on April 29, 2014, 09:46:34 AM
Arsenal beat Newcastle 3-0 tonight - hopefully our next banana skin won't be Pardew being sacked before the end of the season.

Everton are now 4 points behind Arsenal and they both have two games to play - however they need to look over their shoulder to protect their potential 5th place as Spurs are only three points behind with two to play, and even the Mancs could pip them, although nine points behind, they have three games to play and their goal difference is only one less than Everton's.

Spurs are at West Ham on Saturday, then finish at home to the hapless Villa - potentially four points.
Everton need a point at the very least with having a hugely better goal difference than Spurs and they finish the season away at Hull, who's players will all be playing for an FA Cup final place.

Hopefully they'll fancy their chances of getting a point at home in front of their own crowd than away at Hull.

In our favour is the fact that Spurs play at 12.45pm, and Everton at 5.30pm, so hopefully a Spurs win earlier in the day will inspire The Toffees.

Yeah, we're really clutching for straws here, aren't we? Another straw is City's record over the last 4-5 years at Goodison. I just fear there's too little left of the season. God, this one hurt more than anything I've experienced in footy. Even worse than missing out on the '86 WC to Portugal.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on April 29, 2014, 12:03:57 PM
Yeah, we're really clutching for straws here, aren't we? Another straw is City's record over the last 4-5 years at Goodison. I just fear there's too little left of the season. God, this one hurt more than anything I've experienced in footy. Even worse than missing out on the '86 WC to Portugal.

Ye of little faith Martin. We have the points on the board and City have to win at Everton.

This all comes down to our naivety in the Chelsea game, it was hardly a surprise in how Chelsea was going to play as they have done so against Citeh and Arsnal, it was more of a surprise on how we didnt take this into consideration and played a waiting game. It's all very well throwing your best troops at the holders of Rourke's drift but ultimately it is doomed to fail, better to surround them, and let them starve in a siege. Which of course, we didnt.
And that is the only reason for our current predicament.
There will be more twists and turns...
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 29, 2014, 03:42:22 PM
This all comes down to our naivety in the Chelsea game.............

I think that sums it up. Before the game we were on 80 points with 9 to play for. Chelsea were on 75 with 9 to play for. City were on 74 with 12 to play for.

A draw sees us through with a win against Palace and Newcastle. Even if City win all four games they couldn't overtake us.

A point was more use to us than Chelsea and it meant we still had everything in our own hands.

On the one hand I admire the fact that the manager went out to win, but sometimes it's more about pragmatism than 'the right thing'. He's going to need to learn this for next season and the CL.
I'm sure he will. He's been prepared to more flexible this season than he was last season. When he studies the past season once it's finished, I'm sure he'll revise his thinking in certain situations.
He's a student of the game and I'm sure he'll look at the likes of Shankly, Paisley, Taggart and even Carra's comments on Monday night football.

Mourinho played it the same way as he did against Arsenal, and they picked us off in the same way as they did against Arsenal. Hopefully, long term, this will be a great point to learn from for everyone at the club.

But hey, we're getting p!ssed about not winning the league. We are still the same squad as we were when we kicked off the season, and we weren't fancied for good reason. Let's not get too down at not being able to over-achieve even more massively than we have in order to pull off the impossible.

This is probably the first real challenge we've put in (right to the bitter end) since we last won the league. We are still 2 points clear with 2 games to play. City have no room for error if we do our job, and maybe the disappointed will just give us that extra determination we need to cross the line, and if we lose it on goal difference, then just stop and think about that. Goal difference after 38 games, with a vastly inferior squad, a vastly less experienced squad and a vastly less experienced manager who hasn't had the chance to make the mistakes to learn the things that can prove the vital difference makers.

We believe until the final result is known.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on April 29, 2014, 06:04:40 PM
but why did we have to get past the bus?

THEY needed to beat us.  A draw was a result that would have ended their title pursuit.

We could have sat tight and let them waste their own time.  Instead we played dangerous passes in bad areas of the pitch.   i saw the goal coming......see above, when i was posting during the game.    We were an accident waiting to happen.

I thought our naivety was on display today - and/or very limited tactics.

I wanted to post this. This is from a member of rawk, who is a coach.

There's nothing worse than a manager trying to coach a tactic that is the polar opposite of what they are used to. That's why long ball coaches who then switch to trying to play possession tend to lose more games, or vice versa - because they are not conversant with the triggers that go with that type of game, so players get confused. Tactically, you are correct, that we could have dropped off, settled for the draw from the start, and took any goal that came our way as a gift. But that's not a game the Rodgers is very well-versed in, despite the efforts earlier in the season. Chelsea do that game better. We would have played into their hands, probably. Our failure to score today was more complex than merely going for the jugular for 90 minutes. It was down to individual issues, rather than anything systematic.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 29, 2014, 07:06:15 PM
What you quite often don't get is when a team like ours is faced with an opposition who's sole intention is to stop the game in it's tracks like Chelsea, like the lower teams in the division do, is an upping of the 'work rate' of the 'attacking' team to match the work rate of the 'defending' team.

I don't think anyone is suggesting we should have played two banks of four or even a back four and midfield five and simply knocked the ball about amongst ourselves, but when a team comes to defend so obviously, it is more important that you don't over commit in anyway and allow them a chance, because if you do and they take it, they will lock the game down even tighter, as they are already set up to sit there.

The successful teams through the ages didn't just have good defenders, or a capability of defending well when the opposition had the ball and attacked them, they themselves attacked from a solid defensive setup, so that attack was converted to defence quickly and solidly - that was what made their 'defence' so successful.

We have to learn to be patient. If we're not 2 up in the first 15 minutes, so what. One of the things Taggart's teams always had in common with our's was the ability to score late goals as well as early ones. In other words they remained calm and patient and worked the opposition for the entire game, keeping their increased rate of movement up throughout the entire game and taking advantage when the opposition inevitably tired.   
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 29, 2014, 07:13:24 PM
Luck and money seems to go hand in hand really.

It buys you the facility to have more luck.

Gary Player once said 'the more I practice, the luckier I seem to get', in response to being accused of being lucky.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 29, 2014, 07:18:54 PM
It will be interesting to see what the 'tactical genius' does against Atletico, knowing that they have to score and make sure Atletico don't.

Unless of course they've only been practicing penalties between Sunday and Wednesday.  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 30, 2014, 07:40:52 PM
Another interesting 'straw to clutch': http://www.kickoff.co.uk/18801/why-liverpool-could-clinch-the-title-on-goal-difference-after-all/ (http://www.kickoff.co.uk/18801/why-liverpool-could-clinch-the-title-on-goal-difference-after-all/)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 30, 2014, 07:47:43 PM
Another interesting 'straw to clutch': http://www.kickoff.co.uk/18801/why-liverpool-could-clinch-the-title-on-goal-difference-after-all/ (http://www.kickoff.co.uk/18801/why-liverpool-could-clinch-the-title-on-goal-difference-after-all/)

And now I'm going to take it away - Palace have the league's best defensive record since Pulis' appointment.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 30, 2014, 09:51:31 PM
It must be true what some players say about it being inspiring playing at Anfield.

Chelsea's players are more inspired at our home, in front of our fans, than they are at their home, in front of their fans.  ;D

Their trophy is stopping us winning the league - proves, just like the lot across the park, that small timers play in blue.  :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on April 30, 2014, 09:56:35 PM
An alternative view of last Sunday: http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpools-loss-chelsea-could-transform-3480008 (http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/liverpools-loss-chelsea-could-transform-3480008)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on April 30, 2014, 11:11:33 PM
This season ain't over just yet  ;D

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 01, 2014, 12:49:43 AM
This season ain't over just yet  ;D

The fat bint's still down McDs stuffing her face, and she has to pass the kebab shop (yeah, right, like she's ever managed that in her life), and she hasn't got to the local to tank herself up on pints of brown flavoured water, before singlehandedly doing a cat's chorus into the mike where the feedback's doing it's best to save us all from an aural raping.

Whilst ol' fatty's quiet, there's always hope, alternatively castleton.   (Google places of natural beauty in Derbyshire - don't worry, the mother in law's not mentioned, so you're safe.)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 01, 2014, 04:06:57 PM
Eden Hazard's criticised Mourinho's tactics after last night's defeat: http://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/473336/Eden-Hazard-Chelsea-are-NOT-set-up-to-play-football (http://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/473336/Eden-Hazard-Chelsea-are-NOT-set-up-to-play-football)

Maybe this could make their job of attracting players harder and help us for next season. Obviously we can't compete with their spending power, but if they start to appear a less attractive place to play for 'real' footballers, either we may stand a better chance for players we're both looking at (as long as money is low on the list of priorities), or find that they haven't been able to strengthen by as much as they otherwise might have done.

Silver linings and straw clutching all in one post.  :o
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 02, 2014, 11:50:01 AM
Pulis has won the April Manager of the Month award. Let's hope the curse strikes him on Monday evening.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 02, 2014, 05:18:23 PM
still licking my wounds from Sunday.

it's not the despair that does for you

it's the hope that kills you.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 02, 2014, 07:49:54 PM
it's the hope that kills you.

It's why I've kept 3rd in mind since the beginning of March. Pleasantly surprised, rather than deeply disappointed. I've been expecting the greater depth and experience of the Chelsea and City squads, plus the far greater experience of both individual managers to eventually prevail at some point. To still be top, with only 2/3 games left to play is amazing.

In so many ways we're not yet equipped to win the league yet still the worse we can finished is third, closer to the winner than we were to the 5th placed team last season. Far closer to the winner than the 2nd placed team was last season. We've made it a three team race when looking at everything, if it was to be a three team shoot-out, we wouldn't have been one of them.

It's hard to feel disappointment whatever the outcome on May 12th. I think next season has more chance of being disappointing than ever this one could feel.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on May 02, 2014, 11:05:03 PM
I have this feeling Liverpool Football Club will surprise a lot of people this season and I am confident that Brendan's managerial skills will see a couple of players take 3-4 steps forward helping us reach the 70 points mark with room to spare. Whether it's enough for 4th or not I don't know.

That's all I had to say. You may no resume your usual service of scornful and hateful rhetoric aimed at the manager of the club I loved for over 35 years.

Have a great season, I know I will!  :)

Martin and others I know you are down in the dumps at the moment as am I but read this post and smile because we have achieved more than what we all thought we would this season.

As I said this season ain't over by a long shot. It ain't over till its over!!

One other major plus is that we are guaranteed to go straight into the group stages of the CL and that gives us a better chance to prepare and is the carrot to dangle in front of speculative new signings.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 12:03:52 AM
Exactly. What's to be disappointed at.

I hate the 4th place with it's tied qualifier, meaning technically you're in the CL, but not really, and all the uncertainty it creates.

To have qualified for the CL next season, and not just 'a chance' of it but actually to be definitely in the actual competition real is amazing.

With the opportunities it brings in player recruitment this Summer, which hopefully means we move forward quicker over the next season or two than we would have expected to, is great.

We hoped to definitely qualify for Europe. We'd have taken 5th if we had to, as qualifying via the league is something we've missed out on for too long, but to skip that and qualify for the CL by also skipping the qualifier is beyond what the most optimistic optimist amongst us would have thought would be the case.

Yet we're disappointed because we lost to Chelsea, which only left us 2 points clear at the TOP of the league and maybe losing out to mega rich City on goal difference. It's an improvement not seen in modern football, definitely not Premier League era, and the last team to go from 7th to 1st the following season was Everton, apparently. Anybody have a clue of when that even was? Were any of us even alive then?  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 12:12:29 AM
Tony Pulis, what a fat mouth:

http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/crystal-palace-vs-liverpool-pulis-3489556 (http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/crystal-palace-vs-liverpool-pulis-3489556)

I don't remember him flapping his gums this much ahead of last week's game against City.

Like anybody would ever trust him with a £100M. The world's most expensive ever ale house team.

What's his problem with us? He's rapidly turning in Neil Warnock  MK2.

Did our team bus once run over his Staffy, the chavvy twot?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 03, 2014, 11:47:16 AM
we have achieved more than what we all thought we would this season.

Exactly. What's to be disappointed at.

 :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 03, 2014, 11:48:13 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ikssfUhAlgg (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ikssfUhAlgg)

it's only a flesh wound.

come on City, let's be having ye
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 03, 2014, 11:57:19 AM
I hesitated to say this earlier, because I did not want to possibly jinx things.

but since the turn of the year, I have felt something very special about this year.  And that was linked, not only to the way we were playing offensively, but also to the 96 souls who are now starting to find justice.....allbeit, some 25 years late.

I genuinely believe that the 96 are watching over us.  This is their year.

This season is not over.  It may be over after Monday night's game at Palace.  But for now, it is still on.

Everton win, we draw - title is back on.    Everton draw and we win - title is back on.   

But we have to beat City's result.

This is not over (yet).

Come on the bitters!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 12:25:25 PM
:o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o

 :D  :D

Dude, try these:  8)   Wow, suits you,  Sir.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 12:28:53 PM
I hesitated to say this earlier, because I did not want to possibly jinx things.

but since the turn of the year, I have felt something very special about this year.  And that was linked, not only to the way we were playing offensively, but also to the 96 souls who are now starting to find justice.....allbeit, some 25 years late.

I genuinely believe that the 96 are watching over us.  This is their year.

That would be my only disappointment if we can't win the title. Finally, after all these years, the world has finally woken up to the truth, and the title, like the FA Cup, would have been a fitting tribute to the 96, and just as importantly, their families.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 03, 2014, 12:38:59 PM
That would be my only disappointment if we can't win the title. Finally, after all these years, the world has finally woken up to the truth, and the title, like the FA Cup, would have been a fitting tribute to the 96, and just as importantly, their families.

well said.

today's events at Goodison will be highly significant.

but it will be heartbreaking, if we did get a chance, and then could not take it at Palace, come Monday night.

Palace will be immensely difficult - unless Suarez finds his shooting boots again.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 03, 2014, 03:07:48 PM
well said.

today's events at Goodison will be highly significant.

but it will be heartbreaking, if we did get a chance, and then could not take it at Palace, come Monday night.

Palace will be immensely difficult - unless Suarez finds his shooting boots again.

Palace will no doubt be a tough game so lets hope Rodgers´ability to learn quickly is still in place.

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 04:09:04 PM
well said.

today's events at Goodison will be highly significant.

but it will be heartbreaking, if we did get a chance, and then could not take it at Palace, come Monday night.

Palace will be immensely difficult - unless Suarez finds his shooting boots again.

The run in has highlighted our need for a third striker and a couple of others (at least) capable of weighing in with a few goals, so we rely on no-one in particular. It's all a part of the pieces that the manager still has to assemble.

I'd rather he did it carefully, with quality not quantity, because as Arsenal have shown, and we've benefited by it, stability is key. Only Sakho and Mignolet out of the core of players used regularly this season, weren't at the club last season, so stability and continuity have proven beneficial this season.

Not adding a new face to the mix in January has also probably been a blessing in disguise.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 04:21:44 PM
Palace will no doubt be a tough game so lets hope Rodgers´ability to learn quickly is still in place.

Come on you redmen!!!

It's Brendan, to you, Martin. Where's your respect for the man?  :D

It's a hope that the manager will learn from various points in the season. I think this season has shown he has learned certain things from last season, and hopefully next season will demonstrate further 'lessons learned' (I do love that song)  :D  from this one.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0wS_d8hqUJ8 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0wS_d8hqUJ8) for your musical enjoyment (or otherwise)  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 04:23:09 PM
Palace will no doubt be a tough game

The league's best defence since chavvy w@nker took over.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 03, 2014, 06:08:11 PM
Palace will no doubt be a tough game so lets hope Rodgers´ability to learn quickly is still in place.

yes, exceptionally tough.

we are badly missing henderson.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 03, 2014, 06:08:50 PM
It's Brendan, to you, Martin. Where's your respect for the man?  :D

 :D :D :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 03, 2014, 06:10:30 PM
1-1  after 37 mins

aguero, the wee bugger, equalised, before getting injured (and subbed).

At least he is off - but the return of Toure has transformed City.

He is THE difference in good City, and exceptional City.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 03, 2014, 06:37:31 PM
grrrr


City lead 2-1 at half time.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 03, 2014, 07:26:10 PM
So cash is king after all. Gutted to see the gypsy score two extremly easy goals. I hope we lay down and die just like they did the next time they need a helping hand. Absolutely gutted to see us lose the title this way. CL qualification is good an'all but this was the chance we had to win the title. It ain't gonna happen any time soon.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 03, 2014, 07:32:40 PM
totally agree, Martin.

this was our best chance ever.

we won;t be this close again for a long time. 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 08:30:40 PM
So cash is king after all. Gutted to see the gypsy score two extremly easy goals. I hope we lay down and die just like they did the next time they need a helping hand. Absolutely gutted to see us lose the title this way. CL qualification is good an'all but this was the chance we had to win the title. It ain't gonna happen any time soon.

It's pointless blaming Everton. We're responsible for our own destiny. Maybe if we'd held onto our 2-0 lead at Goodison in November, we wouldn't be hoping for favours off others.

 
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 08:35:22 PM
totally agree, Martin.

this was our best chance ever.

we won;t be this close again for a long time.

As long as we learn the lessons we should progress again next season. Probably not a title challenge but a top 3 finish with CL football would see us building a base for a sustainable bright future.

Let's not forget how long and how much City had to spend before getting their first title. We can't take the short route via spending so we have to do it the hard way, creating a squad better than the sum of it's parts.
I'd much rather we did it that way than just by throwing money at it.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 03, 2014, 08:36:21 PM
It's pointless blaming Everton. We're responsible for our own destiny. Maybe if we'd held onto our 2-0 lead at Goodison in November, we wouldn't be hoping for favours off others.

Yeah, and we would've been helped if the ref would've sent off Mirallas, or if he'd awarded us a goal and a peno at the Etihad, or a peno at the bridge. A lot of people are harping on about things have gone our way this season but forget no other team has got so many tough and decisive calls against.

I stand by what I said tes, their professionalism and integrity on City's 2nd and 3rd was non-existant and you'd be forgiven for thinking Howard had placed a huge bet on a city win on their opener.

I've seen City take on Hull with 10 men for 80 minutes, CP and Everton away and it's stunning really how bloodless all those teams were.  Almost like they didn't care (which they prolly didn't).

In all likelihood they'll spend 200 million this summer to see their first title won on points rather than GD next season. Footy's a great sport indeed. Fuckin gutted.

YES I AM BITTER AS fork!!!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 03, 2014, 08:52:37 PM
As long as we learn the lessons we should progress again next season. Probably not a title challenge but a top 3 finish with CL football would see us building a base for a sustainable bright future.

Let's not forget how long and how much City had to spend before getting their first title. We can't take the short route via spending so we have to do it the hard way, creating a squad better than the sum of it's parts.
I'd much rather we did it that way than just by throwing money at it.

They'll just outbuy us. This season is proof if any. City haven't played as a team all season but depended on individual brilliance throughout. They have the best individuals, we have the best team. Whoever said footy's a team sport got it all wrong.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: barticus on May 03, 2014, 09:32:58 PM
So cash is king after all. Gutted to see the gypsy score two extremly easy goals. I hope we lay down and die just like they did the next time they need a helping hand. Absolutely gutted to see us lose the title this way. CL qualification is good an'all but this was the chance we had to win the title. It ain't gonna happen any time soon.

The gypsy?
I thought Everton did their best against a superior team who rode their luck...
We didnt lose the title due to this game, we lost it cos we were bloody naive in the Chelsea game...
Ain't gonna happens any time soon?
If we keep what we have, strengthen the squad by 4 QUALITY players and rodgers learn the lesson of you can't pass in behind them, if they've parked the bus....then there is every chance that we can have another go....the 2 games at chelsea and citeh are also key factors...if brendan concentrates on building a fergie factor to his repertoire then in the coming years then there's every chance the title will appear again...
p.s Oh and it isn't over....
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 09:35:18 PM
Yeah, and we would've been helped if the ref would've sent off Mirallas, or if he'd awarded us a goal and a peno at the Etihad, or a peno at the bridge. A lot of people are harping on about things have gone our way this season but forget no other team has got so many tough and decisive calls against.

I stand by what I said tes, their professionalism and integrity on City's 2nd and 3rd was non-existant and you'd be forgiven for thinking Howard had placed a huge bet on a city win on their opener.

I've seen City take on Hull with 10 men for 80 minutes, CP and Everton away and it's stunning really how bloodless all those teams were.  Almost like they didn't care (which they prolly didn't).

In all likelihood they'll spend 200 million this summer to see their first title won on points rather than GD next season. Footy's a great sport indeed. Fuckin gutted.

YES I AM BITTER AS fork!!!!!

But we can't control the actions of others, only ourselves. We have to achieve it ourselves then we don't need to rely on others. They may spend £200M more than us, but the fact remains is that we've achieved more with what we've got than they have with what they've got.

We're more p!ssed off being second only one goal difference this season than we were this time last season.

Let's just place this in some perspective. Saturday May 4th 2013 after 36 games - we were 7th,  30 points behind the team in 1st.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 09:45:38 PM
Cardiff 3 - 2 Man City
Aston Villa 3 - 2 Man City
Sunderland 1 - 0 Man City
Southampton 1 - 1 Man City
Norwich 0 - 0 Man City
Man City 2 - 2 Sunderland


As Bart says, it isn't over yet, and City trip up against teams you'd least expect them to. I realise the last two games are at home, but the easier the game appears, the bigger the banana skin it could be.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 09:50:34 PM
And we've won our last 6 consecutive away games, scoring 20 goals into the bargain. Remain positive for another 180(ish) minutes.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 03, 2014, 10:38:06 PM
Good article here, and for once I agree with 'Brendan', and don't think he is 'blowing his own trumpet' (ooohhh, err, Mrs). Last season I  would have done, this season he's earned my respect (mostly).

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/liverpool/10806235/Brendan-Rodgers-I-will-be-a-better-manager-next-season-even-if-Liverpool-are-denied-title.html (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/liverpool/10806235/Brendan-Rodgers-I-will-be-a-better-manager-next-season-even-if-Liverpool-are-denied-title.html)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 04, 2014, 08:45:55 AM
Good article here, and for once I agree with 'Brendan', and don't think he is 'blowing his own trumpet' (ooohhh, err, Mrs). Last season I  would have done, this season he's earned my respect (mostly).

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/liverpool/10806235/Brendan-Rodgers-I-will-be-a-better-manager-next-season-even-if-Liverpool-are-denied-title.html (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/liverpool/10806235/Brendan-Rodgers-I-will-be-a-better-manager-next-season-even-if-Liverpool-are-denied-title.html)

I told you that would happen.  :P Cheers for staying positive Tes, I really appreciate it. Wish I could be morle like that myself. Just have the feeling the best team didn't win the title this season and although a lot have gone for us, many things have gone against us like City playing both CP and Everton away when they're having an off-day. I truly am bitter, I know.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 04, 2014, 02:06:38 PM
I told you that would happen.  :P Cheers for staying positive Tes, I really appreciate it. Wish I could be morle like that myself. Just have the feeling the best team didn't win the title this season and although a lot have gone for us, many things have gone against us like City playing both CP and Everton away when they're having an off-day. I truly am bitter, I know.

I posted several days ago that I was worried Everton were running out of steam, and I think that's whats happened.

We have to a degree, but then it's only to be expected. We have a core of probably only 14/15 players that you would be happy to select. The rest are quite literally just making up the numbers.
We may not have European competition, but our players have had international games and travel. I realise other teams have that, but City and Chelsea have a deeper squad to utilise. We barely have a first 11 + 5 subs.

In the first 5 games in which Suarez was missing, we drew 2-2 away at Swansea and lost 1-0 at home to Southampton. Just one of his goals in either game would see us with at least an extra point, and potentially the title.

I don't think you're bitter at all, Martin. We never in a million years dreamed we would be talking about a title challenge of any sort, never mind a chance of winning it this season. With the huge surprise comes even greater hope, and to be 5 points ahead of Chelsea with three games to go got us believing and hoping against all logic. And with that comes crushing disappointment and frustration if we can't take our chance.

We massively overachieved to get into that position. To see it out required experience, another thing we are massively lacking in at the moment compared to Chelsea and City, both squads and management. To pull it off required even further over achievement. We may or may not eventually win it. Who knows. There are 2 games and six points to play for. Unexpected results do happen.

Before the season started there were 6 teams that had finished ahead of us for the last two seasons running, and that happened under two different managers. We haven't finished 5th or better for the last four seasons. 5 of the 6 teams had finished ahead of us for three or more seasons running, and three for even longer.

Simply to get UEFA Cup football we had to somehow finish ahead of a third of those teams. For a CL qualifier it meant finishing ahead of half of those teams. What we're actually going to at worse is finish ahead of 4 of those 6 teams, possibly even 5.

That's the scale of the achievement to be challenging.

As I've said before though, you have to learn to challenge for the league first, before actually going one better. City have the experience of both challenging and winning, as do Chelsea. We have neither.
Even though we got ourselves 5 points ahead, it's that final part of the home straight is the hardest to negotiate, especially without experience.

Think of a 1500M race. If you kick for home too early on the straight you risk being overtaken just before the line by someone who has timed their kick for home perfectly. If you leave it too late then the finishing line appears and you've run out of track.

This is the manager's first challenge for any trophy of meaning. Nevermind one like the league that takes a lot of skill and experience to cross the line in first. Next season, or the season after, if we find ourselves in the same position as we did before the Chelsea game he will understand that avoiding defeat, picking up that point that meant two further wins and City simply can't catch us, is actually more important than trying to win the game for the sake of winning the game. Experience teaches you pragmatism. You learn to do what is needed, which may be different to what you'd ideally prefer.

We now have a new test and a new lesson, and that's to come back from the disappointment and however we do it, win the last two games. It may not be enough for this season, but learning that lesson may mean it's exactly what we need next season, and the experience of managing it this season could be the difference next season or the season after and by achieving it this season, we would give ourselves the experience to draw on in the future.

What would be the real choker is if we don't respond, and then find City slip up in one of the next two games.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Edward224 on May 04, 2014, 04:50:55 PM
We'll win the league on goals scored.

Had a dream the other night that Carroll scored a deep in injury time goal that didn't change the result of the match as West Ham will still lose, however it changes the goal difference and thus the title!!

We'll beat Palace 5-1. City will beat villa 3-1. Meaning heading into the final game City have a 7 goal advantage. In goals scored in means we have 101 and City have 99.

Going into the final game then. We end the first half against Newcy 3-0 up. City are winning 2-0. As it stands it is a 6 goal difference and we have 104 goals and city 101.

Second half. Our first attack and one of their defenders gets sent off and Gerrard converts the pen. We are 4-0 up and the difference is 5.

Around the 60min mark are faltering but all of a sudden Remy dances around our defence and scores 3-1 and difference is 6 again.

We bring on Alberto and Moses for Allen and Johnson. In our attack after the subs we get a corner and Sakho scores from that 4-1. difference is 5 again.

Noise going around Anfield and its getting louder and louder West Ham score from a free kick it is 2-1. difference is 4.

Suarez then scores a sublime free kick to make it 5-1. difference is now only 3 goals!!!

BUT DESPAIR!!!!!!! News comes that Yaya Toure scored a 20 yard screamer and its 3-1 to city so the difference is now 4.

Moses and Henderson combine a 1-2 and Sturridge taps the ball into an empty net to make it 6-1 after 75mins and the difference is back to 3. Goals scored are now 108 for us and 102 for city.

Suarez is now a man possessed and goes around 4 newcy players but Krul saves his shot and it's a corner. From the resulting corner newcy clear it but it comes out to Alberto who hits a 25 yarder to make it 7-1!! difference now 2!!!

But elation soon becomes desperation as news comes  that Nasri has scored to make it 4-1 to city difference is now 3! There are now only 5 minutes left of the game.

All of a sudden Sturridge gets a through ball rounds Krul and scores to make it 8-1 and the difference is 2 again!!.

In the last minute of the game we get a free kick about 35 yards out. At this time Aspas comes on for Sakho. Gerrard knocks it to Flanagan who puts it in the middle where Aspas scores!!!! 9-1!! and the difference is now 1!!!

4 minutes of injury time we attack again but we are denied but the post. We attack again are caught out and Newcy Counter with Gerrard the only man in our half he fouls Remy and is sent off. Newcy hit the bar with their free kick.

At city with the score 4-1 City are aware that its only 1 goal in it and are pressing but can't score.

At Anfield deep into stoppage time of injury time the ball is in the box and it comes to Sterling who hits iiiiiiitttttttttttttttttt and Krul makes a remarkable save and Newcastle clear it. The final whistle. Liverpool win 9-1 but are in despair as they miss out by one goal.

However there is still 1 more minute to play at the Etihad. Silva just missed an opportunity to make it 5-1 and West Ham have a goal kick. This comes to Noble who gives the ball to Downing who has a 1-2 with Nolan but is fouled in the process. West Ham have a free kick.

Downing takes it and city clear but it comes to Diame who passes it to the other side of the box to Taylor who crosses but Clichy clears it for a corner. 20 seconds are left. Downing takes the corner but City don't clear it Diame puts it into the box, Carroll jumps above Lescott and Zabaleta and heads it in 4-2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! goal difference is now the same but as Liverpool have scored 111 goals and Man City 103 goals we win the league goals scored!!!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 04, 2014, 06:53:14 PM
So what are your nightmares like. Second thoughts, don't answer that.  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 04, 2014, 06:54:33 PM
Cardiff 3 - 2 Man City
Aston Villa 3 - 2 Man City
Sunderland 1 - 0 Man City
Southampton 1 - 1 Man City
Norwich 0 - 0 Man City
Man City 2 - 2 Sunderland


As Bart says, it isn't over yet, and City trip up against teams you'd least expect them to. I realise the last two games are at home, but the easier the game appears, the bigger the banana skin it could be.

Add Chelsea 0-0 Norwich to that list. Probably even more unexpected than City's failure to beat Sunderland.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 04, 2014, 07:07:22 PM
What would be the real choker is if we don't respond, and then find City slip up in one of the next two games.

I think we will use the Chelsea result today to make sure we focus on the job and make sure we get the win, however we need to do it, as you would have to put West Ham and Villa down as more likely to get a draw at City, than you would have done Norwich getting a point at Chelsea, especially after their result against us last Sunday. It's what we love about football.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 04, 2014, 07:12:28 PM
Additionally a win tomorrow sees us seal 2nd place, at worst.  :o

It may also be an advantage for us now we're not defending our 1st place position. We're back to chasing, and the pressure's reduced. Everyone's talking about how City are favourites.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 04, 2014, 07:51:21 PM
edward, if we have to beat Newcastle by twelve, on that final day, then so-be-it.

6 or 7 by half-time.....and we are set.   Brendan can follow his wet dreams and play a 2-4-4 formation (with migrolet overlapping when we have the ball).

mind you, with no titus bramble marshalling the bar-codes defence, things are more difficult than they might have been.

re today - why oh why oh why, could Brendan not have done what norwich did

norwich AWAY at chelsea, against their main team.... draw......while we, at home, against their second string outfit, fuk up.

I could shake brendan and gerrard, I really could.    All the hard work we had done, thrown away.

right, Palace, let's be having yae.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 04, 2014, 07:53:22 PM
of course, if sunderland had held on to win 2-1 away at City two weeks ago, and not conceded that late 88th minute City equaliser, we would still be in cruise control.

very costly goal.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 04, 2014, 08:03:34 PM
Taken from: http://www.independent.ie/sport/soccer/premier-league/chelsea/most-clubs-would-love-chelseas-problems-30241984.html (http://www.independent.ie/sport/soccer/premier-league/chelsea/most-clubs-would-love-chelseas-problems-30241984.html)

For a bit of context, it's worth mentioning that Chelsea will be top of the Premier League if they beat Norwich this afternoon. It's the best home record against the worst away one so it's hard to see any other outcome.

This is from the Irish Independant, not a Chelsea fan site.

Believe. Football's kick in the balls for one is a crowning moment of glory for another.

Let's beat Palace and put even more pressure back on City, and then see if they can react.

Silva is unfit having just returned from injury, and Aguero is injured. If they can shut Dzeko out (who I wouldn't say no to us having if there's the slightest chance in the Summer), then the impossible could become more possible.

Villa have ended their losing run, there's no pressure on them at all and being away from the critical Villa Park hordes could work in their favour.

They've only won 6 times at home this season, but 4 times away, (suggesting they may be more comfortable away from Villa Park) including Arsenal, Southampton and Sunderland (who have only been beaten by Fulham - 1st game of season, Hull and West Ham outside of the top seven teams). So an away win at Sunderland was no mean feat by either Villa or West Ham.

West Ham may have only won away 5 times in the league, but they include a win at Spurs, Cardiff and Sunderland (both high pressure wins at the time) and they held Chelsea to a 0-0 at Stamford Bridge. Their away wins were in Jan, Feb, March, (they missed out in April) so they're due another away win.

And Andy Carroll has a good record against City.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 04, 2014, 09:23:17 PM
City have failed to score in the league 3 times this season, but not since 8th February and against the unlikeliest of teams in Norwich City. They're due a blank.

Also they've only been involved in two 0-0 this season, the last, that same game against Norwich. They're due a 0-0.

We've also only failed to score 3 times in the league, but the last one was the last game, so we're not due another over the next two games.

We've not been involved in a 0-0 at all this season, so the odds are long on that happening in the next two games.

We've kept 10 clean sheets this season, but not in the last 4 games. We've only gone 5 games or more without a clean sheet once this season, so again we're due one.

Palace have failed to score at home 8 times in the league this season. They've also kept 7 clean sheets at home.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 04, 2014, 09:47:06 PM
I posted several days ago that I was worried Everton were running out of steam, and I think that's whats happened.

We have to a degree, but then it's only to be expected. We have a core of probably only 14/15 players that you would be happy to select. The rest are quite literally just making up the numbers.
We may not have European competition, but our players have had international games and travel. I realise other teams have that, but City and Chelsea have a deeper squad to utilise. We barely have a first 11 + 5 subs.

In the first 5 games in which Suarez was missing, we drew 2-2 away at Swansea and lost 1-0 at home to Southampton. Just one of his goals in either game would see us with at least an extra point, and potentially the title.

I don't think you're bitter at all, Martin. We never in a million years dreamed we would be talking about a title challenge of any sort, never mind a chance of winning it this season. With the huge surprise comes even greater hope, and to be 5 points ahead of Chelsea with three games to go got us believing and hoping against all logic. And with that comes crushing disappointment and frustration if we can't take our chance.

We massively overachieved to get into that position. To see it out required experience, another thing we are massively lacking in at the moment compared to Chelsea and City, both squads and management. To pull it off required even further over achievement. We may or may not eventually win it. Who knows. There are 2 games and six points to play for. Unexpected results do happen.

Before the season started there were 6 teams that had finished ahead of us for the last two seasons running, and that happened under two different managers. We haven't finished 5th or better for the last four seasons. 5 of the 6 teams had finished ahead of us for three or more seasons running, and three for even longer.

Simply to get UEFA Cup football we had to somehow finish ahead of a third of those teams. For a CL qualifier it meant finishing ahead of half of those teams. What we're actually going to at worse is finish ahead of 4 of those 6 teams, possibly even 5.

That's the scale of the achievement to be challenging.

As I've said before though, you have to learn to challenge for the league first, before actually going one better. City have the experience of both challenging and winning, as do Chelsea. We have neither.
Even though we got ourselves 5 points ahead, it's that final part of the home straight is the hardest to negotiate, especially without experience.

Think of a 1500M race. If you kick for home too early on the straight you risk being overtaken just before the line by someone who has timed their kick for home perfectly. If you leave it too late then the finishing line appears and you've run out of track.

This is the manager's first challenge for any trophy of meaning. Nevermind one like the league that takes a lot of skill and experience to cross the line in first. Next season, or the season after, if we find ourselves in the same position as we did before the Chelsea game he will understand that avoiding defeat, picking up that point that meant two further wins and City simply can't catch us, is actually more important than trying to win the game for the sake of winning the game. Experience teaches you pragmatism. You learn to do what is needed, which may be different to what you'd ideally prefer.

We now have a new test and a new lesson, and that's to come back from the disappointment and however we do it, win the last two games. It may not be enough for this season, but learning that lesson may mean it's exactly what we need next season, and the experience of managing it this season could be the difference next season or the season after and by achieving it this season, we would give ourselves the experience to draw on in the future.

What would be the real choker is if we don't respond, and then find City slip up in one of the next two games.

Very good post there Tes. What really hurts me though is that we only lost 1 game since SB on Boxing day. 1 game and it potentially takes away everything we achieved every since. No team in the league is close to our run during that time so just like the two defeats at Christmas, I feel we're very had done by to be honest.

I have no problem saying we've been, by far, the best TEAM this season. For the past 10 or so games City's depended solely on individual brilliance (Silva at Hull or Toure at Palace) to win them the games. It isn't over til it's over. I just hope we can get fired up for the game tomorrow night. It would be such a tragedy if we collapsed now.

Come on you redmen!!!

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 04, 2014, 09:51:12 PM
Very good post there Tes. What really hurts me though is that we only lost 1 game since SB on Boxing day. 1 game and it potentially takes away everything we achieved every since. No team in the league is close to our run during that time so just like the two defeats at Christmas, I feel we're very had done by to be honest.

I feel exactly the same, Martin

I have been lamenting how despite that long run of victories, we have lost merely once, and yet it is not enough.

life seems so bloody unfair.



Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 04, 2014, 09:57:12 PM
if only we had a fresh set of legs, especially a fresh Suarez, we could hammer Palace and Newcastle.

but as Tes said earlier, Liverpool (and City and Chelsea) have all looked tired and jaded in the last month or so.

we had no squad to fall back on.....City and Chelsea did.

mind you, on the issue of Chelsea, after their efforts at Anfield, I am delighted to see them feck up in both the Champions League and the Premiership trophy hunt.

The Russian owner must be questioning value for money.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 04, 2014, 09:59:00 PM
Our core squad this season showing number of PL games started:

1. Mignolet  34
2. Johnson  27
3. Flanagan  21
4. Skrtel  34
5. Toure  15
6. Sakho  16
7. Agger  15
8. Gerrard  31
9. Henderson  34
10. Lucas  19
11. Allen  13
12. Coutinho  28
13. Sterling  22
14. Suarez  31
15 Sturridge  24

16. Enrique  6
17. Cissokho  12
18. Moses  6
19. Aspas  5

20. Jones  0

I wrote them out in those groupings before I'd even looked up the amount of PL games each had started - the squad is that easy to select. The only contentious one may be Allen 13 starts to Cissokho's 12, but I think it's pretty obvious that Allen would have had more starts if he'd been fit for selection for all 36 games.

Compare that to the pools of talent that Chelsea and City have to select from - and to think we're 2nd in the league, only on goal difference, with only 2 games to go (1 in Chelsea's case).
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 04, 2014, 10:25:56 PM
thanks for that data.

yes, it has been an amazing performance from that 15 man core squad.

I guess the camel that broke the horse's back, was losing Henderson.   We could not cover over that loss.

We needed him badly against Chelsea.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 04, 2014, 10:30:24 PM
I feel exactly the same, Martin

I have been lamenting how despite that long run of victories, we have lost merely once, and yet it is not enough.

life seems so bloody unfair.

Indeed, and even more so if we're to finish runner's up on 86 points for the 2nd time while, at the same time it'll be City's 2nd title on GD since the Arabs arrived with their money. Unfair doesn't half say it.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 04, 2014, 10:35:00 PM
thanks for that data.

yes, it has been an amazing performance from that 15 man core squad.

I guess the camel that broke the horse's back, was losing Henderson.   We could not cover over that loss.

We needed him badly against Chelsea.

Not sure I agree Dude seeing as we were playing to win the game I'm not sure his qualities was the missing link, so to speak. I was more disappointed in Coutinho's inability to rise to the occasion.

Yeah, thanks for the data, Tes. I really really think Allen's starting to show his worth. Has been one of our more consistent performers during the past 6-8 weeks. Long may it continue. I'm also a tad taken aback by the fact Sakho's been our 2nd highest performer in the CB position.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 04, 2014, 10:54:55 PM
I feel exactly the same, Martin

I have been lamenting how despite that long run of victories, we have lost merely once, and yet it is not enough.

life seems so bloody unfair.

It's one of the reasons that at no point should we have been regarded as favourites. We lacked the consistency over the long stretch. We may have peaked just a touch too early, or lacked the experience to see it over the line, as we have lacked experience in seeing out games at times this season. We had to peak when we did in order to put ourselves in with a chance, but with a bit more consistency in the first 13 games we could have peaked a little later and still been up there but with a bit more left to see it through - not that we haven't yet.

First 13 games:

WWWDLWWDWLWDL - ( the results in bold include) draws away at Newcastle (2 goals scored) and Everton (3 goals scored) and defeats away to Arsenal (2 goals conceded) and Hull City (3 goals conceded, 1 scored)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 04, 2014, 11:00:00 PM
Not sure I agree Dude seeing as we were playing to win the game I'm not sure his qualities was the missing link, so to speak. I was more disappointed in Coutinho's inability to rise to the occasion.

I think with Hendo being much more mobile than Lucas it would have given our midfield a different dimension, with the possibility of more forward runs, or runs to take players away and create a bit of space.

Totally agree about Coutinho, though we have to remember he's only young. I'm sure it will come, and he got us out of a hole against City.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 04, 2014, 11:03:27 PM
No fear! Tony Pulis urges Crystal Palace to attack Liverpool

http://www.dailystar.co.uk/sport/football/377356/No-fear-Tony-Pulis-urges-Crystal-Palace-to-attack-Liverpool (http://www.dailystar.co.uk/sport/football/377356/No-fear-Tony-Pulis-urges-Crystal-Palace-to-attack-Liverpool)

That would be great. It will play right into our hands as we will get space and/or pick them off on the break.

It's odd how Pulis has been far, far more vocal in the build up to this game than he was against City.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 11:03:12 AM
It looks like the manager's already learned one of the lessons of last Sunday:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/27277564 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/27277564)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 11:32:33 AM
Gerrard's slip against Chelsea:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBuOEI2Kk5o (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBuOEI2Kk5o)

Watch from the 30 second mark, keep an eye on the top left corner of the screen, though it's only a second or two, but everything Sakho does, I suggest would be done differently with experience, or if Agger had been playing. Hopefully it's little tweaks to our defending like that that the manager can definitely change without it having the slightest effect on the attacking side.

See what I'm getting at?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 07:45:02 PM
Team for tonight: Mignolet, Johnson, Flanagan, Skrtel, Sakho, Gerrard, Allen, Lucas, Sterling, Sturridge, Suarez.

                   Subs: Jones, Toure, Agger, Coutinho, Aspas, Moses, Cissokho.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 08:43:01 PM
Gerrard's slip against Chelsea:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBuOEI2Kk5o (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBuOEI2Kk5o)

Watch from the 30 second mark, keep an eye on the top left corner of the screen, though it's only a second or two, but everything Sakho does, I suggest would be done differently with experience

See what I'm getting at?

Sakho, with experience, would have shrieked on seeing Captain Marvel, "WTF are YOU doing here.  No way are you getting this fecking ball.  Your first touch is worse than mine."

I suspect you had a different solution in mind, Tes.   :)

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 08:43:57 PM
one nil up

have had a few chances since to make it more.

sadly Suarez is jaded and of little worry to the scorers.

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 05, 2014, 08:52:49 PM
one nil up

have had a few chances since to make it more.

sadly Suarez is jaded and of little worry to the scorers.

Not more so than Sturridge and Lucas though, who are so off the pace it's unreal. One or both of them needs replacing. Also, Flanagan must stop giving the ball away, it almost cost us a goal. Sakho's a giant  clearing everything in the air, while Skrtel is also very very good. Impressive first half of the team and we deffo should have one or two more goals.

Don't let this fornicating slip now!

Come on you redmen!!!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 09:07:32 PM
http://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/474174/Cagey-Brendan-Rodgers-would-take-1-0-Liverpool-win-against-Crystal-Palace?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+daily-express-sport-news+%28Daily+Express+%3A%3A+Sport+Feed%29 (http://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/474174/Cagey-Brendan-Rodgers-would-take-1-0-Liverpool-win-against-Crystal-Palace?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+daily-express-sport-news+%28Daily+Express+%3A%3A+Sport+Feed%29)

So far so good then.

I think it's a bit far fetched to think we can overcome the current 9 goal difference, especially as we'd need even more on top to make up for City winning their two games.

A win puts the pressure back on City - we should focus on that.

Two wins and see where it leaves us.

A third striker is a must in the Summer, especially as both our strikers will be away at the World Cup - Sturridge obviously not for as many games as Suarez.

Loic Remy? More like Sturridge than Suarez.

Suarez is being weighted down by all the awards he's won this season. He should have left them in the dressing room instead of tucking them down his socks for safe keeping.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 09:26:51 PM
yes Martin, the lads do look jaded. But so do Palace.

3-0 now.

I wouldn;t give up on the goal difference route just yet, Tes.

at 3 up, we are 6 off City's goal difference.

IF, and it is a big IF, we were to knock in 2 or 3 more, then it would start to get interesting.

Yes, as you say City will probably pummel  one or both of their opposition.

But if City only had a 3 or 4 goal advantage, going into that final game.....then it would be very interesting.  I could imagine us hammering Newcastle at Anfield, if we had to.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 09:45:24 PM
2-3 and we are under siege.

brendan really has not got the hang of this tactics malarky.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 09:46:09 PM
yes Martin, the lads do look jaded. But so do Palace.

3-0 now.

I wouldn;t give up on the goal difference route just yet, Tes.

at 3 up, we are 6 off City's goal difference.

IF, and it is a big IF, we were to knock in 2 or 3 more, then it would start to get interesting.

Yes, as you say City will probably pummel  one or both of their opposition.

But if City only had a 3 or 4 goal advantage, going into that final game.....then it would be very interesting.  I could imagine us hammering Newcastle at Anfield, if we had to.

Those multiple conceded goals in the high scoring wins could bite us on the @$$, but I just can't get disappointed at the thought of not winning the league this season, apparent best chance or not. We've had better, stronger squads since 1990, and at times when money didn't neccessarily buy you the league.

To be second, with only goal difference keeping us off the very top, with just two games to play for both us and the leader, is the best challenge we've put in since 1990. It's probably the most unlikely challenge (Blackburn had the money to render it as likely) since Leeds won it in the last season before the Pr£mi£r L£agu£ incarnation.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 09:46:42 PM
Sakho, with experience, would have shrieked on seeing Captain Marvel, "WTF are YOU doing here.  No way are you getting this fecking ball.  Your first touch is worse than mine."

I suspect you had a different solution in mind, Tes.   :)

Well, actually Dude................................... ....... :D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 09:47:24 PM
2-3 and we are under siege.

brendan really has not got the hang of this tactics malarky.

 :'(
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 09:48:55 PM
pure woeful

is david moyes free
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 09:49:30 PM
2-3 and we are under siege.

brendan really has not got the hang of this tactics malarky.

I hope somebody more experienced in these matters sits him down over the Summer and explains a thing or two.

Steve Clarke's only playing golf at the moment. An experienced assistant with an eye for the defence.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 09:52:55 PM
I hope somebody more experienced in these matters sits him down over the Summer and explains a thing or two.

Steve Clarke's only playing golf at the moment. An experienced assistant with an eye for the defence.

good idea, Tes.   We need some brains brought in.

The man who came up short in our title chase, was Brendan.

Fecked up v Chelsea (nutty tactics); and has utterly fecked up in the second half at Palace.

There goes the title.

and 3 nil u after an hour......utter utter madness.  Embarrassingly bad.......school boy stuff.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 09:54:51 PM
is david moyes free

No but this man is:

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/9/9b/JohnInman.jpg)
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 09:57:30 PM
 :D

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 09:58:22 PM
the title is gone.

now back to the studio.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 10:16:42 PM
I'm going to listen to five live phone-in - this should be fun.

Steve Clarridge talking sense. It's easy because it's elementary but all the same, good to hear it.

When we conceded that first goal, that was the time to say 'forget the goal difference', get the three points.

Same as the Chelsea game. Try and win, but make sure you don't lose and get the point.

Before the Chelsea game our maximum was 89 points, 87 with a draw.

City were on 74, with 4 games to play, maximum 86 points.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 05, 2014, 10:18:53 PM
the title is gone.

now back to the studio.

It was already gone. 2 individual mistakes cost us dearly. It beggar's belief how anyone can lay the blame with Rodgers for this one.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 10:23:33 PM
I'm going to listen to five live phone-in - this should be fun.

Steve Clarridge talking sense. It's easy because it's elementary but all the same, good to hear it.

When we conceded that first goal, that was the time to say 'forget the goal difference', get the three points.

Same as the Chelsea game. Try and win, but make sure you don't lose and get the point.

absolutely.

first criteria, get the 3 points.

when Palace got one back, ok, we seal up the shop, park the bus. 

We'll take the three points, and forget any more goals.

Same against Chelsea, I was shouting at the screen in the first half - you wuld have thought we needed the three points, not chelsea.

But as I always feared, Brendan does not have any other tactics......it is Keeganesque football

These two games have shown us the emperor's new clothes.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 10:24:40 PM
It was already gone. 2 individual mistakes cost us dearly. It beggar's belief how anyone can lay the blame with Rodgers for this one.

does someone else organise the team?
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 10:27:01 PM
I'm going to listen to five live phone-in - this should be fun.

wish I could hear that!

must turn on the tv, and see if I can get radio 5, via one of the apps......commentaries are blocked, but they might allow the talk show bit.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: the dude abides on May 05, 2014, 10:33:37 PM
have successfully tuned in.......chrstal clear sound.


Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 10:37:11 PM
It was already gone. 2 individual mistakes cost us dearly. It beggar's belief how anyone can lay the blame with Rodgers for this one.

If we have a defensive side to our game we have the capacity to absorb mistakes. All title winning teams make individual errors. Kompany's against us. Grob wasn't labelled a clown for nothing.

We've failed to close the season out like we've failed to close some games out. That is more than just about 'individual mistakes'.

Think about our CL's run when we won it. That's what I'm talking about. And this isn't about names or personalities, so please don't sink to a 'Brendan V Rafa' diatribe, because this is not about personalities, but the Liverpool manager's (name irrelevant) needing to be less idealistic and more pragmatic.

Just to put it another way - when Paisley was manager it was snowing heavily one Thursday. The players thought that training would cancelled. Paisley instead insisted training went ahead so they could practice a more long ball approach just in case the pitch was as snowy on the Saturday. Pragmatism - not selling out, not changing your priciples or beliefs on a whim, but being realistic, seeing a bigger picture and doing what is required, within the rules of course. Remember our constant back passing? Pragmatism.

This feels as bad as the Arsenal game in 1989.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 10:38:28 PM
have successfully tuned in.......chrstal clear sound.

Steve Clarridge was common sense personified.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 05, 2014, 10:49:39 PM
This feels as bad as the Arsenal game in 1989.

Not even close. Then it was game over. This game is still on. City WILL lose a game at home some time.  I actually feel more optimistic about the title than I did 2 hours ago. Funny thing I know. I actually watched Villa against Hull and if they can perform with the same level of energy and hunger they displayed over the weekend, then I'm not ready to call it a season just yet. Then there's Fat Sam and his hatred of the novoeau riche. Keep the faith!!!

Come on you redmen!!!

Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 05, 2014, 11:28:55 PM
Not even close. Then it was game over. This game is still on. City WILL lose a game at home some time.  I actually feel more optimistic about the title than I did 2 hours ago. Funny thing I know. I actually watched Villa against Hull and if they can perform with the same level of energy and hunger they displayed over the weekend, then I'm not ready to call it a season just yet. Then there's Fat Sam and his hatred of the novoeau riche. Keep the faith!!!

Come on you redmen!!!

Martin, I don't know what chemical they use in the water where you live, but I'd check your chest for feathers.

BTW, I'll have a 5litre bottle of it.  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 05, 2014, 11:48:36 PM
Martin, I don't know what chemical they use in the water where you live, but I'd check your chest for feathers.

BTW, I'll have a 5litre bottle of it.  ;D

Best of all - it's free!!!

Seriously though, I really really do not understand why people are so down. I don't understand it. I don't understand why a draw is considered so much more probable than a defeat? Is it really really so beyond everything City lose a game at home? They almost did against Sunderland bar a blunder from their keeper.

2 things in our favour:

1) City (just like Milan once did) think they have already won the title so in that sense, no matter how ironic, tonight's result may prove better than a win as that would surely have seen them focused and on their toes.

2) This is by far the biggest game for Villa this season if not in many years. If they win they'll go down in history for sure plus they were very impressive against Hull on Saturday.

This ain't over. Not by a long shot!
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 06, 2014, 12:03:46 AM
Best of all - it's free!!!

Seriously though, I really really do not understand why people are so down. I don't understand it. I don't understand why a draw is considered so much more probable than a defeat? Is it really really so beyond everything City lose a game at home? They almost did against Sunderland bar a blunder from their keeper.

2 things in our favour:

1) City (just like Milan once did) think they have already won the title so in that sense, no matter how ironic, tonight's result may prove better than a win as that would surely have seen them focused and on their toes.

2) This is by far the biggest game for Villa this season if not in many years. If they win they'll go down in history for sure plus they were very impressive against Hull on Saturday.

This ain't over. Not by a long shot!

But if we do our job and win, it puts more pressure on them, increasing the chances of that happening. Even if they draw one of their next two games, they only need to win the other. A win and a draw and it's their's. We should have made them have to win both games.

It's why I bang on about the defensive side (or lack of) of our game. Defenses may not win you games, but they win you and cost you titles.

Shankly, Paisley, Clough, Stein, Taggart - all built their teams on a solid defence. That's one massive coincidence.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Martinmarx on May 06, 2014, 12:10:39 AM
But if we do our job and win, it puts more pressure on them, increasing the chances of that happening. Even if they draw one of their next two games, they only need to win the other. A win and a draw and it's their's. We should have made them have to win both games.

It's why I bang on about the defensive side (or lack of) of our game. Defenses may not win you games, but they win you and cost you titles.

Shankly, Paisley, Clough, Stein, Taggart - all built their teams on a solid defence. That's one massive coincidence.

Rodger's is going about it in a different way and I don't mind it at all. I'm confident he'll sort it sooner rather than later.

I'm sure that a win tonight would've brought the best out of City on Wednesday.  in terms of focus and concentration. They will now believe it's already theirs now and the difference between 2-2 or 1-2 ain't that big either.  And even if they draw, what's not to say they won't draw again against Fat Sam's boys a few days later with tired legs and nerves on their skin? People are making way way too much of that horrible 10-15 against Palace. Had we beaten Chelsea, we'd still be in the driver's seat. No reason to despair at all. None whatsoever.

I haven't endured the last 2 months of anxiety and near heart failure just to turn into a pessimist when there's no reason to. So there!  ;D
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 06, 2014, 12:11:00 AM
Carra knows: http://www1.skysports.com/football/news/29327/9298962 (http://www1.skysports.com/football/news/29327/9298962)

This is why we've blown it.
Title: Re: 2013-2014 Season
Post by: Tes on May 06, 2014, 12:14:07 AM
I haven't endured the last 2 months of anxiety and near heart failure just to turn into a pessimist when there's no reason to. So there!  ;D

That was just too funny.  :D  :D
Titl