NEIL Atkinson was joined in the studio by Rob Gutmann, Sean Rogers and James Sutton as they revel in the afterglow of the brilliant 3-0 win at St Mary’s, and yet another step towards the League title.
Get issue 7 of TAW’s monthly digital mag free from iTunes for iOS devices or from app.theanfieldwrap.com for everything else.
DIRECT LINK TO PODCAST: ALL THE BEST
Great show and good analysis of the first half. I was more than a little disturbed by Brendan congratulating himself on the diamond. We got lucky in the first half, and he made a mistake dropping Sterling for Joe Allen, Allen had to play but for Coutinho. Sterling has so much more to offer against teams like Southampton: he’s quick, strong, physical and he scores goals. His game has come on leaps and bounds this year. Still, hats off to Brendan for making the change early in the second half, it was a game changer. I’d be happy with the finishing eleven for the rest of the season, with Coutinho as a deluxe impact sub. I’d rather we binned the formation, though, diamonds aren’t forever…..
It was a fantastic result on Saturday. Always the pessimist I couldn’t see us getting the 3 points there but when I did dream I thought we could scrape a 1-0 or a 6-5. To win 3-0 under the circumstances of the game reached a new level, for me. It reminded me of what Utd have done for years. I’ve watched their games and thought ‘they’re not on top here’ but then they’ve won 3 or 4 nil. If we’re honest it’s the result of champions. It’s what they do and what 4 and 5th place teams don’t do. Even down to bringing someone off the bench who gets a goal.
It’s been obvious for some time now that if Liverpool could improve away then we’d be in business but I wasn’t seeing much change game to game. It didn’t appear our tactics were addressing the issues we had. Saturday felt like we now know how to win away. I said before the game I wanted to see us take a similar approach to when we beat Everton at home and I feel we did.
Finally, I was pleased to hear the fans chant Rodgers name. It was by no means the first time but I feel it was the most sincere and heart felt. More so than Arsenal at home. I also liked how in typical Rodgers style he didn’t acknowledge it till the crowd had sang it for a good while, knowing they’d stop once he waved. He deserves it though. Him and Sturridge have been hard done by. So, to summarise, forget Spurs away and Fulham away. This win felt like we’ve turned a corner. If we beat Utd then it’s case closed – Liverpool are back!
We mustn’t forget that Utd DO have goal scorers, who are likely to finish the kind of chances that Soton created.
Important not to be over confident about that game given how mediocre they have been this season. We need to make sure we make it tough for them and work hard to capitalise on our strengths and get the result.
They will be motivated but if we get on the score sheet it will knock them hard, especially if we do it twice. Lets go you reds.
Rob, I think the point is about Gerrard covering his full backs is that he needs to do it in a way that doesn’t leave wide open their attacking midfielder as he has done in the last two weeks with Lallana and Shelvey. I am not quite sure about this, but I think the problem is that he is leaving his zone when the ball is still high up the pitch and so leaves a nice easy pass into the attacking midfielder’s feet. Whereas I think with Lucas he is able to get across and cover his fullback further back in our half while simultaneously cutting off the angle for a square ball to the AM. Therefore by the time the ball does make into the AM he has had time to recover his position.
I basically think that Gerrard isn’t all that aware of the angles he is covering at any one moment and that is why we are struggling to contain passing teams like Swansea and Southhampton. He played really well against Arsenal but Henderson was sitting very close to him then and together they were very quick to collapse back on the little ball that Arsenal love to play to feet just in front of the back four. Will be very interesting to see how we set up in the big games against ManU, Spurs, City and Chelsea with Lucas coming back as an option.
Most important game of the season? WBA at home to the Mancs on Saturday. If they don’t win that, 4th is completely dead and buried for Moyes. So with the home game against us coming 3 days before the Olympiakos second leg, Moyes has a big selection dilemma. He’s never going to put out a second string because their fans wouldn’t tolerate that, but we may find the likes of Rooney or RVP benched, along with others, making our task that much easier.
Come on the Baggies!
I’m guessing that won’t be the case. If Utd lose to us then the calls for his head will be untenable. Surely Saturdays game is important for West Brom but irrelevant for the top half. Even if Utd win they’d need to WIN all 10 of their remaining games with the top 4 losing 4 out of their 10. Can see your point but the only thing Moyes has to play for is his job for next season.
Well if Utd beat WBA and then us, they’d be 8pts behind with 9 games left. Meaning it would still be very difficult to overhaul us, but by no means impossible. But if they lose to WBA they’ll go into the game against us 14pts behind, and with a CL second leg 3 days later he’d have to prioritise Olympiakos. Put it this way: I can’t see Moyes picking a full strength team against us whatever happens at WBA, but a defeat would simplify the equation for him. He’s not getting sacked whatever happens, IMHO.
I appreciate what you’re saying mate. On paper you’re absolutely correct. In reality, when you look at the form, the spirit in the camp and the momentum of the 2 teams then Utd ain’t catching us. They’ve had their day – it’s our turn now.
Regarding Moyes, I’d be saddened if they sacked him but the truth is Utd is a huge corporation and they don’t sit around and watch their empire crumble around them. It’s ridiculous but the bottom line is the shares are dropping the worse the results get and that’s what will make them act. They’ve just given Rooney a £80m contract in the hope it’ll build confidence throughout the club, exactly like we see in the markets. There’s a very good chance they’ll be another statement of intent in the summer. I’d guess 2. Huge investment and the end of Moyes. Losing £35m in compensation would be bad but this season has cost Utd nearly £60m (assuming they don’t get top 4). Fergie’s give the new manager a chance won’t come into it. The days of patience are over. It’s unfortunate for us LFC fans but he’s over done it. It’d have been better if he’d been a little bit less wank.
Look Brownie mate, I’m just debating for the sake of debating now but my view on the match is this – Moyes is in a terrible place at the minute. He lives this every minute of the day. He looks in the mirror of a morning and thinks to himself ‘I think they’re all right, I am fuckin clueless and to top it all off I’m ugly too’. With his Scottish fight and pride though he thinks, ‘I’ll show them who’s fuckin ugly’. So the Liverpool game is coming up. The game his advocate wanted to win most. The one that the fans want to win at any cost. Lose and the cries for his head get louder. Lose by not taking the game seriously and resting players and he needs a police escort out the ground to protect him from his own fans. He simply can’t put the LFC game as a low priority. His only choice is to come out fighting come what may later in the week.