Liverpool Exit Carling Cup After Losing 2-1 To Arsenal

A good performance from the lads at The Emirates this evening but unfortunately not good enough. Liverpool lost 2-1 after finding it difficult at the final push to get an equaliser but despite the defeat there were positives aplenty to gain from this match.

The starting eleven consisted of several players we rarely see in Liverpool's first eleven so tonight's game gave us another insight into the players that are shadowed by Liverpool's first choices.

Kyrgiakos;
After just coming back from an injury that was orginally thought to have been worse than it actually was the Greek was somewhat of a presence in the defence for Liverpool tonight. In all honesty he didn't have a superb game, a few silly mistakes were made but between himself and Skrtel tonight i would say he was the more defensively sound.

It was a good chance to look at his dominance in defence as i had heard alot about his strength and power he used at AEK Athens and also his invaluable experience. I hope he continues to put in performances, would be nice to see him get a run in the FA Cup.

Degen;
Again another player quite recently struggling with injury and i feel he played very well tonight. Some of his forward runs and attacking play were excellent, the man has pace for a full back. In contrast however is he good enough defensively? I didn't see much of his abilities defense wise but i feel Degen given the chance could be a good team player.

Spearing;
As in the Sunderland match i felt it was clear that the local lad was hesitant and nervous maybe? It is obvious the skills and ability are there he just seems a bit weary at the moment. However with some good flashes during the game i am positive with more match time he will continue to improve and gain confidence.

Plessis;
He wasn't necessarily outstanding but i feel he did his job this game. His passing in general was good and his awareness/movement etc was too. Again i feel with some more matches under his belt, he will certainly improve. One to keep an eye on possibly.

So what could be picked out from the more familiar faces?

Babel;
Quite simply frustrating throughout the game. Time and time again when he had possesion, he lost the ball. When attacking he appeared to pull the same old trick each time, a flick into the inside and an attempt to push into the box although this was usually sussed out by the Arsenal defense.

Is it me or is the Babel "step inside" now becoming useless? It appears when gaining entrance to the box this is his only piece of skill, every team has realised this. When faced with an attacking Babel they know instantly what he is going to do. Even his pace doesn't seem to be helping him lately. A poor game for the dutchman.

Voronin;
Again, frustrating. I try to accept that Voronin is supposed to be an average player and that within a match i shouldn't expect anything fantastic from him but surely i can expect some decent control of the ball? Some decent passing? And maybe a decent shot or two on goal. It appears he is far from a decent player. Even with his loan spell at Hertha Berlin where he actually played well and scored 11 goals he isn't Premier League standard.

Kuyt;
Who was skipper for tonight's game didn't have an outstanding performance although he didn't really put a foot wrong. It was one of those "get on with it" matches and he just did what was asked. Only down side was he wasn't attacking as much as he usually would.

Insua;
After scoring an absolute wonder goal the LB appeared to be even more confident and put in a brilliant 90minutes for the Reds. I'm becoming more and more impressed with Emiliano as the games go by. He's not perfect at the moment, but just the fact that he is already so impressive and still has so much to learn is very exciting.


Skrtel;
Sloppy. Is probably the best descriptive word for his performance. A notable moment when he was faced with Bendtner and after being unable to successfully deal with the attack found himself pulling on the Arsenal forward who then punished with the second goal. It is clear why favour has been shifted to Agger, Skrtel needs to regain some form.

Arsenal were simply more fluent tonight, their attacking play was of a better quality and after the Bendtner goal went in it was quite clear up until ten minutes before the end when Liverpool instigated some more offence on the Arsenal area that they were going to walk away with the win.

So some positives to take from the game and also fortunately the loss isn't the end of the world. There are still three pieces of silverware to aim for and there is every chance that one of them will be ours come May.

Finally, (no i didn't forget) Il Principino - Alberto Aquilani - Liverpool's Number 4 was brought on towards the end and boy for 15 monutes or so did he fill you with hope. A glimpse of his play included a fantastic long range pass, two or three successful tackles, a look at his pace and an acrobatic bicycle kick which saw the effort make contact with Senderos. The attempt should have resulted in a penalty as many a player and fan were right to argue that it was hand ball but unfortunately the decision was not given.

All we can do now is look ahead to sealing three points at Craven Cottage on the 31st.



What were your thoughts on the players performances and the result?

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