Showing posts from August, 2010

Fernando Is Back

Sometimes he does make you think "Where would we be without him?"...
It may have taken a while longer than we're used to and i'm with the conspiracy that he's had to wait for his new hairstyle to settle in... But Fernando Torres got off the mark for the new season yesterday in an otherwise evenly poised tie against West Bromwich Albion.
Hodgson again chose to field Agger as a make shift left back in his back four with Skrtel, Carragher and Johnson completing the set up. Reina was in goal and it was Jovanovic, Poulsen, Lucas and Kuyt who made up midfield. Captain Steven Gerrard had the role sitting just behind lone forward Torres.
A slow start by Liverpool meant West Brom were able to try their luck, the Baggies weren't too prolific in front of goal but the defence had some scares when players like Fortune and Dorrans managed to get through the midfield blockade of Poulsen and Lucas and into the danger areas.
Despite this Liverpool eventually found their feet and …

Baggies Boing Boing To Anfield

Torres looked lively against City, lets hope he continues this form if he starts in tomorrows clash...
Liverpool face West Bromwich Albion tomorrow at Anfield and after a tough start with Arsenal and then Manchester City as the opening games of the Reds' season it will be a game hopefully of less demand and more things to cheer about.
Newly promoted Midlanders are often reffered to as the "yo-yo" club, after several seasons rotating between the championship and the premiership, they just never seem to have been able to settle in England's top footballing league.
West Brom have a few players unavailable for tomorrows game through injury including Ishmael Miller who i personally think poses a slight threat for the boys from the Hawthorns. As for players that are fit and could feature i'd say it would perhaps be wise to keep an eye on Graham Dorrans who for a midfielder in the championship did well last season goalscoring wise.
West Brom don't really have too many…

Kuyt Converts To Secure Liverpool's First Ever Victory In Turkey

Really hope Martin Kelly continues to get game time from Hodgson, we need to support talent coming through the ranks...
A nervy and somewhat scrappy 2-1 win for Liverpool last night, thankfully prevented Hodgson from becoming the first manager to go out of Europe with Liverpool before the end of August. Liverpool will now face Steaua Bucharest, Napoli and Utrecht in the group stages of the Europa League.
Hodgson's side as mentioned in my preview was without Steven Gerrard, Fernando Torres and Javier Maschernao, all for differing reasons but this ultimately meant a very different XI would be fielded. Reina, Carragher, Kyrgiakos, Johnson and Kelly made up the back 5. Ngog was up front alone with Poulsen, Lucas, Cole and Kuyt making up the midfield.
Liverpool's starting 5minutes couldn't have been filled with more contrast. 2 minutes in and Kyrgiakos went close with a header from a Fabio Aurelio corner but just another couple of minutes later the Reds found themselves down after…

Second Leg In Trabzon

Ngog will certainly fancy his chances...
After the poor result against Man City on Monday night Liverpool will be looking for a much better performance and result tomorrow night in Turkey.
With suggestions that Fernando Torres will not be playing it is reasonable to assume that Ngog will get another go up front for the Reds. Steven Gerrard will also miss out, suffering from a minor back problem the skipper will be rested instead and the worrying realisation that we have no real attacking midfielders anymore after the loaning out of Aquilani means it could be difficult tomorrow.
Of course Lucas Leiva's original title surprisingly enough was an "attacking midfielder" not in fact the defensive one he has been moulded into. With this in mind i expect it may well be himself and Poulsen in the midfield tomorrow. Be safe to suggest Kelly might get another chance in defence too.
There will be changes but Roy still needs to keep enough experience and talent in the side to ensure we …

City Give Liverpool Early Season Blues

Hmm, i wonder if Mascherano has answered my voicemail...
It was always going to be a pretty tough fixture for Liverpool last night but i don't think many would have predicted such a one sided affair from the home team. Liverpool looked like a team still in pre-season with sloppiness and slow reactions, not to mention a shoddy section of defence. It was just an altogether unpleasant game of football to watch as a Liverpool fan.
Hodgson started Reina in goal with Johnson, Carragher, Skrtel and Agger across the back. Midfield was missing Javier Mascherano who had apparently said he no longer wished to play for Liverpool to Hodgson earlier in the day. It was Gerrard & Lucas then who made up the centre with Kuyt and Jovanovic on the wings. Ngog and Torres led the 4-4-2 formation.
At first glance i felt intrigued by this formation and was interested to see if it could work after so long going 4-5-1 but it didn't take long to start to see the flaws in this plan.
The first incident of…

Reds Face Moneybags City

Hmm... I wonder where i put my scarf...
Well folks after a weekend away with my other half in rather wet Torquay i have been slammed back to reality this Monday afternoon and here i am back in regular routine supplying you lot with a short and sweet match preview... It's ok, there's no need to thank me...
Moving on, if you aren't excited yet for tonight's game i don't know what's going to spur you on. It's a different kind of excitement to the Arsenal game, perhaps due to the realisation that Man City will probably be one of our closest rivals in terms of battling for places just underneath the top four this season, of course we hope for more but that has to be the realistic target for now.
Hodgson has been speaking today/yesterday about how Torres fared against Trabzonspor in his 45minutes on the field and his comments suggest he was very pleased. Torres therefore has got a good chance of starting against this unpredictable City side and boy are we going to n…

Babel Scores To Secure Liverpool Win

Babel celebrates his first goal of the season with team-mates Joe Cole and Milan Jovanovic...
Last nights Europa League clash for Liverpool was not one of our most memorable European nights at Anfield but a win is a win and the sole goal from Mr.Potential allows Liverpool to go to Turkey with a slim lead over their opposition.
Hodgson opted to rest some players who had featured in the game against Arsenal meaning lads like Glen Johnson and Steven Gerrard sat this one out. Mascherano and Agger were unable to feature through injury and rather surprisingly Alberto Aquilani wasn't even chosen for the bench.
Reports coming out this morning though suggest that he may be subject to a loan move and other reports say that Kuyt could be considering a move to link up with Rafa at Inter Milan... All that is for another post though.
So Liverpool had Reina in goal with Kelly, Carragher, Kyrgiakos and Aurelio making up the back line. Midfield consisted of Jovanovic, Rodriguez, Lucas and Pouslen with…

Liverpool V Trabzonspor

Here is hoping Agger gets his memory back soon, might be embarrassing if he calls Roy, Rafa...
Daniel Agger and Javier Mascherano will not be featuring in Liverpool's game tomorrow against Trabzonspor. Agger seems to have totally forgotten he even played a football match on Sunday and is still suffering from concussion whereas Mascherano has picked up a calf injury.
Roy's selection will therefore be slightly different to Sunday's team fielded against Arsenal but will presumably still include the big names i.e. Torres, Gerrard and co.
So what about the opposition? Well some of you older lot will remember a clash with the Turkish side in the European Cup in 1976. The first leg Liverpool trailed 1-0 but won their home leg 3-0 to see the Reds through.
What else do we know Trabzonspor then?
Well, it's no coincidence that they hail from the Turkish town of Trabzon. They were formed in 1967 when several football clubs in Trabzon merged together.
They play in dark red and blue hence…

Joe Cole Sees Red In Draw With Arsenal

Aww... The poor sod! Someone give him a bear hug and a whiskey...
Liverpool came away from Anfield yesterday with a draw, at first glance, a more than respectable result but after the circumstances and sheer madness of the match, the Reds were right to feel hard done by after such a hard fought game.
Roy set up his team with Reina in goal, Skrtel and Carragher in the centre with Agger as left back and Glen on the right. Gerrard sat with surprise inclusion Javier Mascherano in the centre of the park. Jovanovic and Kuyt were the wing men with Cole sitting behind David N'Gog.
For the first 45minutes Liverpool looked steady, fireworks weren't exploding but we were more than holding up against Arsenal i thought. That being said it was clearly dangerous to think Arsenal may not pop up with a flash of brilliance.
Liverpool were eager to get going and keen youngster N'Gog was caught offside on a few occasions in the first half after he set off just that slight bit too early. Persisten…

This Time It's Gunner Be Different

Ohhh shush yerself!...
I don't know about you lot but i don't fancy an early dose of smug mug Arshavin as the starter for my Premier League 5star meal do you?
It's a very strange thing because although Arshavin is clearly a good player he just seems to come alive at our glorious Anfield and i for one am just about sick of it. For Sundays fresh start under Roy Hodgson and with a team that shall have elements of surprise for Arsene Wengers boys, it may not be such a bad result.
A lot of people like myself are probably thinking we're gonna get hammered. At the same time however when you sit back and really have a good old think about things... Why can't we go and get a slim win over Arsenal? We've got some goalscorers, some game changers, we shouldn't have to fear Arsenal surely? A draw is more than feasible but it's the pundit fuelled ruling out of a win for Liverpool that i feel spurs on this negative attitude into the game.
Yes, maybe Arsenal will beat us a…

Win Over Rabotnicki Means Trip To Trabzon

Gerrard more than pleased the home crowd...
Liverpool notched up their first Anfield win of the season last night after they put two past Rabotnicki in their Europa League clash. A lively Anfield despite it not being a sell out provided all of the atmosphere as the away support was minimal. Chants from the kop gave a great welcoming taster of the famous atmosphere to new signings Joe Cole and Milan Jovanovic.
The side fielded by Roy was a real mixture of experience, youth and players who wouldn't always get a chance to shine. With Reina's understudy Cavalieri in goal it was Kelly, Carragher, Skrtel and Glen Johnson who made up the defence.
Jovanovic, Lucas and Gerrard made up the three man centre with Joe Cole chosen to sit behind the two front men: Pacheco and Ngog.
Liverpool got stuck in immediately and were strong even without the ball. Possession was great and the lads were playing with confidence. David Ngog notably who had two superb chances to get on the score sheet very e…

Anfield Opens Its Doors For The Competitive Season

Can Joe Cole impress in his first Anfield appearance?...
Liverpool play their first match of the season at Anfield tonight as they look to secure a place in the next round of the Europa League after this 2nd leg against Macedonian side Rabotnicki.
After the superb news earlier in the week that star striker and adopted Spaniard Fernando Torres will remain at the club, unfortunately the number 9 will not be featuring tonight due to his very late on injury he picked up in Spain's win in the world cup final.
Other players who probably won't be utilised include misfit Philip Degen who has been told he can find a new club and out of place Javier Mascherano who has told Hodgson he wishes to leave the club. Despite this Hodgson remains adamant that he is treating the midfielder still as a Liverpool player so you never know, we may just see the Argentine.
With Pepe Reina, Dirk Kuyt and Ryan Babel recently back in training after their extended breaks we could probably see all three of those…

Borussia Moenchen(not-so-glad-to-be)bach

Cole makes his debut...
Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carraghers return to football for the Reds ended with a loss yesterday after just the one goal split the two teams. Joe Cole was also allowed his debut and Glen Johnson was back too.
Cole had an impressive hour or so for Liverpool, particularly good in his ability to link up with captain Steven Gerrard. Other familiar faces for Liverpool such as Insua were also putting in respectable performances and the start from the Argentine raises new questions over his imminent future.
It took only 8minutes for the Germans to score after an unfortunate defensive error by Liverpool, Matmour was able to score what would be the winner for Borussia. They looked a stable side throughout, perhaps encouraged by some sloppy play by Liverpool after passes weren't always finding their way through but again as with all the pre season matches played, the Reds have nothing to be ashamed about.
With Reina, Kuyt, Torres and the like back in training today, my a…