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Liverpool vs Sunderland


Rory Fitzgerald

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These were on a horrible run recently from the start of November until mid-December when they played 7 games and only won 1 of them which was away to Fulham when Hangeland got sent off. They lost 5, drew 1 and got that win against 10 men at Craven Cottage. It even prompted rumours that O'Neill had offered his resignation. They've turned if around somewhat since then winning 3 of the last 5 and losing the other 2 away to Utd and then home to Spurs.

 

They have the 6th best away record in terms of goals conceded on the road conceding just 14 from 10 aways which suggests they won't be blown away like Fulham and QPR were. However, of those 10 aways, they only won 2, drawing 4 and losing 4 because they only managed to score 10 goals.

 

We may have to be patient because Sunderland have only conceded 4 goals before the 40th minute with the remaining 22 being conceded thereafter.

 

Fletcher is their top scorer with 8 but Sessegnon will run his legs off. If he pulls a defender out of position then our midfield need to be sharp because McLean, Larsson and Johnson won't be shy about moving in field if there is a sniff of space and that is part of our achilles heel, the midfield not giving enough protection to the back 4 (well, 4 if the full backs have made it back).

 

There hasn't been much squad management from O'Neill over the Christmas games so it will be interesting if he sticks with the same legs though Danny Rose is likely to come back in.

 

Mignolet

 

Gardner O'Shea Cuellar Rose

 

Johnson Larsson Colback McClean

 

Sessegnon Fletcher

 

The last 2 matches at Anfield finished in draws, 1-1 at the start of last season and 2-2 under Hodgson. The last win was under Rafa when we beat them 3-0 at Anfield and Torres curled in a beauty at the start of the game.

 

Bookies price the game as follows

 

Liverpool 2/5

Draw 7/2

Sunderland 7/1

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Shame we cant keep the same 11 after today even though QPR were utter gash, we smashed them either way.

 

With Jose out it is either Downing left back and one of Suso, Shelvey or Assaidi in or Widsom in and Johnson moved over.

 

Saying that I still think Lucas will start, hope Henderson keeps his place above anything.

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We looked better today without Lucas.

 

But also against much weaker opposition.

 

I'd like to see someone more dominant signed as an option.Not talking about spending millions on someone but being astute in the market and finding a squad player for a season or two.

 

Hopefully Rodgers has seen enough to stick with this type of midfield but i'm convinced it would be better with Gerrard where Henderson was, especially against stronger and, more importantly, quicker opposition.

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But also against much weaker opposition.

 

I'd like to see someone more dominant signed as an option.Not talking about spending millions on someone but being astute in the market and finding a squad player for a season or two.

 

Hopefully Rodgers has seen enough to stick with this type of midfield but i'm convinced it would be better with Gerrard where Henderson was, especially against stronger and, more importantly, quicker opposition.

 

If he gets his favoured midfield out there and plays with two at the base instead of 1 then Gerrard will occupy that space. If it's just one at the base and Gerrard and Allen pushing on then I think it will be more ineffective than otherwise. This is of course taking into account the opposition strength

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But also against much weaker opposition.

 

I'd like to see someone more dominant signed as an option.Not talking about spending millions on someone but being astute in the market and finding a squad player for a season or two.

 

Hopefully Rodgers has seen enough to stick with this type of midfield but i'm convinced it would be better with Gerrard where Henderson was, especially against stronger and, more importantly, quicker opposition.

I seem to be in a minority on this but I think Allen has done a reasonable job as stand-in for Lucas.

 

As for the position of Henderson and Gerrard, Rodgers seems to have decided that Gerrard doesn't have the legs to press the ball the way Henderson did today and he's probably right. The flip side is that Henderson is a less of a threat when he receives the ball in advanced areas. The Mackem Sissoko - better at finding a red shirt than Momo was but not as strong in the tackle.

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Due to the fact Henderson put in a good performance today , i would like to see him given another start , now with Enrique being out and Lucas likely to come back into the starting line up , the only shape i could imagine that we would start with would be as follows .......

 

 

---------------------Reina

 

Henderson Skrtel Agger Johnson

 

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

 

----------Gerrard---------Allen

 

Downing-------Suarez--------Sterling

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Due to the fact Henderson put in a good performance today , i would like to see him given another start , now with Enrique being out and Lucas likely to come back into the starting line up , the only shape i could imagine that we would start with would be as follows .......

 

 

---------------------Reina

 

Henderson Skrtel Agger Johnson

 

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

 

----------Gerrard---------Allen

 

Downing-------Suarez--------Sterling

You're rewarding him for his good performance today by playing him out of position at RB?

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I seem to be in a minority on this but I think Allen has done a reasonable job as stand-in for Lucas.

 

As for the position of Henderson and Gerrard, Rodgers seems to have decided that Gerrard doesn't have the legs to press the ball the way Henderson did today and he's probably right. The flip side is that Henderson is a less of a threat when he receives the ball in advanced areas. The Mackem Sissoko - better at finding a red shirt than Momo was but not as strong in the tackle.

 

He did better than anyone else in our squad would and maybe it's just the system that left him exposed but he never felt like the greatest shield

 

Due to the fact Henderson put in a good performance today , i would like to see him given another start , now with Enrique being out and Lucas likely to come back into the starting line up , the only shape i could imagine that we would start with would be as follows .......

 

 

---------------------Reina

 

Henderson Skrtel Agger Johnson

 

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

 

----------Gerrard---------Allen

 

Downing-------Suarez--------Sterling

 

What's the point? Might as well not pick him

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I seem to be in a minority on this but I think Allen has done a reasonable job as stand-in for Lucas.

 

As for the position of Henderson and Gerrard, Rodgers seems to have decided that Gerrard doesn't have the legs to press the ball the way Henderson did today and he's probably right. The flip side is that Henderson is a less of a threat when he receives the ball in advanced areas. The Mackem Sissoko - better at finding a red shirt than Momo was but not as strong in the tackle.

 

 

I think Allen has played well in general but has suffered due to the imbalanced midfield. Think there are times when we should have played three plus Gerrard in there. We've lacked forwards but have Gerrard and yet have restricted his attacking threat

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The referee for this is Phil Dowd.

 

In case you forgot, he awarded 2 pens to West Brom against us on the opening day of the season and turned down our claims away at Spurs ! On the bright side, those things may say he is a 'homer' :hmm:

 

Only 4 refs have given more yellow cards than Big Phil (64 in 18 games) and only 2 refs have given more reds than Dowd (4)

 

You might remember "Not on my Watch" from this match

 

http://videos.sapo.pt/4gnqOl2PznzNlwoZ6lvt

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As long as Sturridge isn't introduced to the crowd, either pre-match or at half-time, then I can cope with him not playing on Weds night.

 

"Anfield, yes we may be 4-0 down at half-time, but please give a big welcome to the man who should hopefully be playing against mansfield on Sunday..."

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