HALF time and it is probably Liverpool’s best Anfield first half of the league campaign. Damning in one sense. Encouraging in another. There is tons of progress here since Sunderland. Tons of football. These footballers look like something approaching themselves.
The half began with an avalanche of chances. There are no whirling dervishes, not like last season, but instead Liverpool had probed their way to the twelve and a half minute mark (that marker point that echoes through the ages) and shown enough to deserve to have a one goal lead. Swansea were a concern before kick off. A good side with the sort of pace in wide areas that could find the gaps in this new set up of Liverpool’s. They have a forward who is a “handful” and a midfield they love to play through. But for twenty minutes it isn’t quite that they can’t live with The Reds, but it is as close as we’ve seen to that.
After that point Swansea grew into it but the contest becoming more even just led to Liverpool having more space to break into. This side just wants to break. It has to break. It loves to break. There had been warnings but suddenly that break was there and suddenly Liverpool had their dancing shoes on, Fabianski beaten. Should he have done better? I haven’t a clue. I was a billion miles away and was only sure that the red blur who buried was Moreno when George said it after a yonk.
The back five feel much more secure than a) the four ever did, b) the side with Lovren in. Sakho was excellent for the goal, but going into the break he looks such a stabilising influence on this whole side. Let’s be clear – he’ll make a mistake at some point in the next nine or so halves of football he plays, but you don’t feel like the countdown has begun. Mignolet is, in reality, a welcome boost from Jones in that you don’t think an attempt on target will equal a goal. Nonetheless Swansea find a small screw to turn before the break and Liverpool look rattled but then break again and the bright Coutinho sees his effort repelled.
That’s half time and I don’t see how The Reds don’t win this. There’s a lot on the line. A Monday night Christmas pint that’s felt increasingly epic as Christmas itself has ebbed. That’s what’s on the line. That and three points already broadly deserved.
The second half begins and The Reds are slightly on the back foot but look potent on the break. Then Fabianski does his Mignolet tribute act off Lallana and the second goal that seals the game is there, however fortuitously.
And then. And then. Then The Reds ghost over the self-destruct button and gift something broadly through exuberance. The Swansea goal stems from Henderson trying far too much. Then there are a series of half mistakes and nodding off and the ball is in the Liverpool net. The Reds wobble.
And then they are magic. Absolutely magic. They are themselves, in excelsis deo. It’s beautiful from Coutinho, the crowning glory on one of his finest Liverpool performances and then slick from Lallana. These Reds don’t stop playing and just ease past Swansea. The fourth a glorious own goal from the man who always has a goal in him.
From there Liverpool play like a side looking for five more than minding four. Other than the rocky five the back three deserve credit. The wing backs deserve credit. The midfielders deserve credit. Lallana and Coutinho deserve carrying aloft. Sterling deserves credit. Swansea are good. Actually a good side, a side that could trouble Liverpool and Liverpool were far better than them.
They were The Reds.
I left on 91. Needed the loo. As I walked out someone behind me said “Quite good that.” Then I met Donald whose first game it was. Made up. Couldn’t get over Mignolet’s kicking. But made up. I saw Steve Graves. His face. His lovely face. His maths. Tons of maths and joy.
The Reds. The Reds are mustard again, says Kris Walsh. He’ll write more tomorrow. It’ll be better than this. But for one night when we’ve all had a pint and we all plan to have more, mustard will do. Forget talk of corners turned. Forget the table, though positive goal difference is lovely. Forget it all. The Reds are mustard again and one night will do.
Enjoy. Have a great new year too. Thanks for hanging round these parts.
Love to all. The Reds are mustard again. One night will do
Blah blah boys pen, blah blah Rodgers teeth, blah blah Swansea were shite, we were lucky. Just thought I’d save some lads the time and trouble. Think that was our best 11 putting in the seasons best performance. Energy , urgency , guile and guts. Loved it. Please build on this and we might salvage this season.
They will still be in moaning at some point. Though not as smug…. because we won.
And were mustard..
What’s wrong with Rodgers’ teeth?
Great performance! Hopefully a corner turned that doesn’t lead up another blind alley. That second Lallana goal was pure bliss
Love the magazine, love the podcast, love the performance tonight but don’t understand the repeated sakho-blindness… He is a liability, pure and simple. Watch him, just watch him. Most passes see him end up on the floor and these back heel passes only mask an inability to remain calm when pressed… It’s a game of opinions after all!
Game of opinions but some people’s opinions are just rubbish mate. I don’t understand A) what game you watched or B) why you feel the need to criticise him when it’s obviously unwarranted. What annoys me most is ‘most passes end up on the floor’ ‘watch him’. Unfuckinbelievable. I’ve watched him like a hawk and I’m astounded how good his passing is. I don’t think he’s had a misplaced pass in the last 3. He’s fuckin incredible on the ball. If there’s 1 criticism you could have is that you hold your breath when he tackles in the box. That aside, he’s a class player but maybe you don’t like the look of him.
I have to admit I’m a bit more conflicted on Sakho than some. I think his passing is pretty good and I called out ages ago that his physical appearance and ungainly nature convinces some people that he passes worse than the stats say he does. And as with Mertesacker when he was getting a ton of shit from certain pundits and journos, I tend to take the view that guys playing regularly for the likes of Germany and France are generally pretty good at football. So whatever failings he has, I put down to the fact that he’s still finding his feet in the EPL. But right now I do find some of the commentary on his performance a little over the top. I don’t know whether this is because he has all the characteristics of cult figure – the sort of player you constantly want to do well – and this is colouring people’s perceptions, or whether he’s just benefitting from ‘not being Lovren’. Either way, the “such a stabilizing influence on the side” stuff I don’t see. Are we better with him in? On the whole, yes, but no more than that.
Put it this way, he’s partly responsible for their goal. Can has a brain fart for the initial cross in from the right, but Sakho is wrong side of Bony(?) for the header back across the box to Sigurdsson. He wins the header, but his positioning means that even craning his neck he can’t steer the ball away from goal. If that’s Lovren’s or Skrtel’s header, they’d be getting pelters.
Don’t want this to sound negative as I like Sakho and would have him in my back three all week, but yes I do think that he is being cut more slack than, for example, Skrtel, who for my money is doing pretty well but tends to get undue criticism from some on here.
I’ve come from a position where I’d been listening to mates tell me he was the worst footballer to ever play for Liverpool. I couldn’t actually remember how he did last season so I believed them. I’m amazed how wrong they were. The pass to Moreno for the first goal was exactly what we’ve been missing when playing out from the back. I’m not having it that Sakho was to blame for their goal. No chance. What was Lucas doing turning his back on the play? Henderson (who’s fault it was initially and arguably for not tracking Sigurdsson) spotted it and tried to track him but gave up and Skrtel was just ball watching. I’d expect the last man to look at the opposition players. Can should have cleared it too (possibly twice). My point is, I can’t see how Sakho is to blame at all. He did well to win the header from his position 10 seconds earlier. What is it with us Liverpool fans????? Do we just like destroying players because we didn’t call for them to be recalled. I don’t get it. I can only see positives both with the win and with Sakho’s performance. Quality night.
Like I said, I’d have him in the team, especially with a back three. No question. I’m not interested in criticizing players just for the sake of it, but I do think it’s interesting how certain players get cut slack for their mistakes when others don’t. And he was definitely at fault for the goal – the CB can’t be standing where we was in relation to Bony. We’d have been better off him not winning the header and simply putting Bony under pressure. He heads it straight back to Sigurdsson for not much more than a tap in. How can he not be at fault? And then immediately after nearly gifts Swansea a second.
Does this make him shit? No. Does it mean he should be dropped? No. If the name on the back of his shirt last night was ‘Skrtel’ would commenters be lining up here to say how well he played given those errors? Not a frickin’ chance.
That’s the bit I find interesting.
that was skrtel’s header, sakho bailed him out. But a lot of mistakes led to it.
The ball is about 15ft above Skrtel’s head. It’s only Skrtel’s header if you blame him for not being the jolly green giant.
Sakho’s header is back along the 6 yard line into the path of Sigurdsson for a tap in. Head the ball away from goal, or out for a corner, but not back into the danger zone. You can reel off 100 things that happen before that which maybe shouldn’t have happened, but the responsibility for the header is Sakho’s.
Try swapping Skrtel/Lovren and Sakho for their respective roles in that goal and tell me that Skrtel/Lovren would not be getting torn to pieces for that header. Especially if it had been followed by a giveaway seconds later that nearly leads to an equalizer.
Look, I’m not bothered who’s fault it was but for the record, Sakho was out wide and running back into the goal. I thought it was Skrtel’s ball to win but he left it and left Sakho no choice but to challenge it. From his position there was little else he could do.
He’s not the finished article yet Brownie but he looks like a proper defender, hence the enthusiasm.
I live in France and love Sakho, seen him à lot and hé is the Best défender in France. Looks a bit ungainly but knows how to defenend but prône to the odd lapes but 30 million less than David Luiz, ask any PSG fan whom was better,
Your completely fuckin wrong about sakho mate. Completely.
Now I feel like buying your book Neil, it was all to painful before tonight. Class performance with 4 new signings in the team, who says Rogers can’t pick a player.
Point to a miss-placed Sakho pass since he’s come in then lads? He and Emre have been calming recently. Their goal is Hendersons fault for ball watching Sakho won the header and Mignolet and Henderson watched on as Sigurdson drifted in.
I like Sakho but his square ball that led to Bonys shot and a decent save from Migs was atrocious. Only one that springs to mind though.
Compare that one misplaced pass with the dozens Lovren gave away EVERY match. There’s a reason why Sakho frequently has a 90+% accuracy with his passing……..he’s very good at it.
Sakho is wrong side of Bony(?) for his header. Watch it again and you can see him craning his neck to try to steer the ball away from goal as he knows he’s wrong side. He’s at least partially responsible, as is Can for allowing the initial cross from the right to reach the Swansea man when he could and should have cut it out.
Neither is an egregious error, but if that’s Lovren or Skrtel lots of people would be talking as if they are.
I don’t see it as Sakhos fault whatsoever.
Skrtel is pointing at Hendo to pick up their man when in fact it was Skrtels responsibility.
Sakho was in the position he was meant to be, seen Skrtel wasn’t picking up the man and tried to rectify the situation. He actually managed somehow to win the ball but couldn’t header it out and so it dropped to Sigurdsen.
If we were playing 2 at the back then Sakho would be more at fault but we were playing 3 and Sakho was were he was meant to be.
Whether Sakho was picking up Bony because someone else wasn’t doing their job is arguable, but even allowing for that the CB can’t be standing that side of the forward. He’s got to be other side and then the header can be directed away from goal. He doesn’t shoulder all the blame, but in taking up the position he does he certainly shares it.
There was thunder on the mountain and fires on the moon.And the sun will be here soon.And every time I hear a new-born baby cry;or see the sky.Then I know why……
But tonight? The North wind doth blow and it be a wee jammy of a kinder and aye stood before a tempest .But I? Aye I hear you knocking but you can’t come in.
But the bell that ringeeth,so mighty and loud,a wee saughie moray,so dressed in a shroud.
And all we are saying is get off my cloud.
Why can’t you just write about football instead of trying to sound like Dylan Thomas or Robbie Burns? Or Robbie Savage for that matter!
Haha. There’s only one Dylan Thomas on here mate (or more accurately, Robert Burns). Well done Brian, fantastic.
I think you’ll find the internet is awash in people writing about football in a standard football-writing voice. Why would you criticize a writer for having a voice that’s different? If you want stock-standard, go find it. If you don’t like this particular style, don’t read it. If you want to express your pointless and arbitrary negativity regarding a match write-up on stylistic grounds, save it for your side of the monitor. Putting it in the Comments is a frivolous condemnation of the actual person behind the voice that might discourage that writer from doing something different that people other than yourself enjoy.
I don’t really understand much of that but you seem to have perfectly understood what I was saying.
Anyway,just look at the comments below.Perfectly reasoned in straightforward language.
This is how normal football supporters communicate with one another.
I can show off with flowery prose and poetry if that’s your thing.
Rose tinted. He goes to ground too easily, can’t pass and makes rash decisions. Not just tonight. Look back at the games since he arrived.
Can’t pass?? You’re having a laff now!!
It’s no coincidence were conceding less since he’s came in.
Don’t mistake his ungainly manner from being poor, because you’re massively wide of the mark.
Best centre back at the club. Him and Can might become our mainstays.
sorry but you’re the blinkered one, and repeating your opinion doesn’t make it any more valid.
Besides that, it was a joy to watch tonight , some fantastic inter play and a well deserved win. Finally Rodgers is correct with his “outstanding” comment.
@ Simon Thomas
“Can’t pass”? It’s the pace he puts on the ball that makes the first goal possible, there aren’t many centre halves in the league and certainly none in our squad (bar the newly positioned Can) that can play that pass. His passing is excellent. And yes, I’m aware of his misplaced pass right after Swansea’s goal.
Sakho misplaced a pass straight after they scored nearly leading to an equalizer. It got forgot about because sky were replaying the goal. However that was the only foot wrong he’s done in about 3 games now I feel.
Much, much better without the skipper and Lovren. Who’d have thought?
Odds on Gerrard slotting straight back into the team against Leicester?
Can looks some player. Strong, composed, good in the air, good technique, two-footed, confident. I want him playing every game from now on whether in a back three or alongside Henderson in centre mid. Coutinho was very good and Lallana does what he does: end product. They complement each other well when they have a moving target in front of them. I like a box midfield, that’s how City get the best from Silva and Nasri. Moreno was born to play wing-back and Sakho, panicky 5 minutes aside, is so much better than Lovren. Let’s hope Kolo comes in for Skrtl at the weekend.
Really enjoyed tonight but all that good work could be undone if he selects his favourites again at the weekend.
Was anyone else reminded of Terry Mac’s goal against Spurs when Raheem hit the post?
You mentioned the unmentionable Paul. How much more secure we seem without SG. I believe he is our greatest ever player, and I’ve seen them all since Liddell, but he seems now to be increasingly marginalised. I have occasionally commented on how Lucas looks so much better when he isn’t having to cover for SG and Glen Johnson: we have to find a cameo role for Steven now, because Can, Toure, Sakho and Skrtel should have the central defence stitched. Can looks like a robust Agger-type CB, a powerful ballplayer. Took a while to realise it but let’s hope it’s settled now.
It’s only one game, but all
of a sudden Liverpool is back!!
Oh ffs, Paul. It was a good performance last night but your constant desire to distill everything to a point about Gerrard is getting tiring. Claiming last night’s good performance was due to Gerrard’s absence is as simplistic and agenda-driven as claiming our inept displays against Sunderland and Stoke earlier in the month were down to starting without him. Have you forgotten about them? Or how about the fact that the only performance better than last night’s (Spurs away) was with a team including Gerrard for the full 90? It’s easy this stuff.
Leicester will be a totally different game. Swansea like to play. The game last night – especially in the second half – was totally open with play switching end to end like a kids’ u-12 match. You won’t get that against Leicester who will play a much more percentage game. Swansea had 56% possession last night and I’ll guarantee now we have at least 60% against Leicester. We won’t be counter-attacking at pace, rather we’ll have to work across the lines for minutes at a time. Against Burley virtually everyone was shit, but I remember Gerrard’s pass into Lambert for his offside goal, and the pass that put Lallana through where you could argue he should have done better. We’ll need passing like that against Leicester and Gerrard is still better at it than anyone else we have.
Does that mean he should automatically start? No. Does last night confirm we can and should do without him from now until the end of the season? Equally ridiculous
Why can’t people just enjoy good performances instead of looking for validation of their own bias?
I’m far from alone Brownie, or hadn’t you noticed?
Do you think it’s a coincidence that we pressed more effectively last night? That we had greater energy? That Henderson provided an assist for one goal and the cross from which Raheem hit the post rather than labouring out wide where he can only pass sideways or backwards? All these things are self-evident to anyone unencumbered by preconceived ideas. I will acknowledge that we have a soft-centre with or without the skipper and need either an upgrade or for Can to move up the pitch to partner Henderson or Lucas. I’m still cursing our manager and/or committee for failing to sign Alex Song, he’s exactly the type of player we need to mirror City’s setup. I’d always hoped that Stevie would adapt his game, he has all the tools to be a great libero but I can’t see it happening anymore. He hasn’t the defensive nous. The question is Brownie, would you change the team against Leicester? If so, why?
We’ve played 8 games in December and Henderson has started all 8, Lucas 7. The Leicester game will mean 9 games in 31 days which is a big ask for anyone in any position, let alone in midfield. On that basis alone you could make an argument for changing things, especially at home against the team propping up the entire league. If you can’t rotate your squad for a game like that, then when?
We played well yesterday in the second half, but if you were going to ask a team to play at Anfield in a way that best suited us the way we were set up last night, it would look like Swansea in the second half. The game was completely open, space all over the park and with our pace on the counter it was the perfect scenario. It could/should have been about 6-3. That was partly due to us going 1-0 up, of course, but Swansea will always let you play whatever the score because of how they approach a game. They are not parkers of buses or ever looking to stifle. They look to play their own game which means you get a game of football whatever the result.
Leicester will be completely different. Even if we got an early goal they will still look to keep the game within reach until last 15 or so. There won’t be wide open spaces for Coutinho and Lallana to run into. They’ll play a low-risk game and we will probably have 50% more possession than we had last night, with two banks of 5 and 4 to break through every time we look up. We’ll have to unpick them because you can’t counter against a team that will only spend 5% of the game in your defensive third.
My main issue is with this default argument you and others promote that says were Rodgers to change things for Leicester, it couldn’t possibly be for any of the reasons listed above (or any other tactical reasons for that matter), but because he has ‘favourites’ or ‘mates’. It’s ridiculous. Rodgers has shown himself to be prepared to make pretty radical decisions whether right or wrong (e.g. the team at Real, resting Gerrard, playing Can in a back 3, swapping out his keeper). Anyone can make an argument for a particular starting eleven and that may or may not include the captain, but can we stop already with this ‘he only picks Gerrard because he’s scared to leave him out / he’s his mate’ stuff?
You ask me whether I’ve noticed other people share your belief about Gerrard, but the truth is outside of some of the LFC boards I don’t notice too many people (pundits, journos, fans of other teams) clamouring for Gerrard to be put out to pasture just yet. Not because he’s undroppable, but because on balance we are still a better team with him in it than out of it, last night’s performance notwithstanding.
Since the Basel game, I think the team has played pretty well (Burnley being far worse than our performance at the Mancs whatever the results said). Gerrard has been part of that along with everyone else who has played, but I no more think he should be a guaranteed starter than I believe he should never start.
Whatever you might think, I don’t have any dogma over Gerrard; from where I’m sitting, the only people showing that characteristic are those arguing he shouldn’t be starting *any* games. To think that, by definition it means other midfielders have played well enough this season to guarantee them a start in every game. In my opinion, there is no-one in this current squad who has come close to earning that right. If you think differently, I’d like to know who you have in mind?
But no-one’s arguing he shouldn’t be starting any games Brownie. This is what’s known as a Straw Man fallacy.
Okay Paul, remind me again the last game that you argued for Gerrard’s inclusion? I never once heard you argue that he should start ahead of any other midfielder we have, because even when he plays well it is – apparently – to the wider detriment of the team. And if we play well without him, you’re first out of the blocks to insist he shouldn’t start the next game, whilst bemoaning the likelihood that he will because he is Rodgers’ BFF.
This is what’s known as pointing out the bleedin’ obvious.
But you’re presumably addressing your argument to posters other than myself, many of whom have argued that he should be utilised differently rather than dropped. It’s pretty simple for me; he doesn’t get into our best eleven anymore. Not because he’s Steven Gerrard but because he’s no longer one of our best eleven players, at least, not if we’re playing high intensity football.
I can see value in him being played against teams that sit back and let us play or coming on from the bench – he may not have the shooting power of old but can still pick a pass and remains, alongside Sturridge, the best finisher at the club – but I don’t want to see other players sacrificed at the altar of Gerrard. Henderson and Lucas are the most natural and complementary midfield pairing at the club right now, rest Henderson every now and then by all means, but don’t play him as a wing-back to accommodate the skipper. I can’t see a place for him further forward as long as we play a box midfield. We have a surfeit of riches at inside forward. Any one of Lallana, Coutinho, Sterling and Markovic can do a job in that role with Sturridge up top. So that leaves the bench or the libero role, and I just can’t see that happening anymore, more’s the pity, because it doesn’t look as though he has the defensive nous (I’d still be tempted to select him ahead of Lovren).
For perhaps the first time this season there were no passengers last night and I’d like to see the players rewarded (the skipper hasn’t been the only passenger this season, there have been plenty). So for me, he’s a squad player from now on.
I’m in sympathy with John Ritchie’s take on last night’s performance and the season thus far:
I do. It was a great pass, but I wouldn’t be starting him in games against the more physical teams.
Nice to be able to relax with 10 left for a change.
Best performances in a red shirt from Llana, Cout, Can and the Mo’s.
The Burnley result now looks much better and the performance can be boxed under “blip”.
Rodgers has found his mojo and decided to try to score at least one more than the opponents. Oh come all ye faithful.
Sakho looks slow, He looks ungainly. He looks like he can’t pass. But he’s fast, he’s strong, he’s dominant, and he can pass. If you don’t believe your own eyes, just check the stats.
WIll he make an error or two? Course he will. Will he make many? No. Has our defence been better with him in the side? Unquestionably.
That’s it I think.
People see him as ungainly, which in fairness he is, and automatically equate that with being poor…..or as I like to call it the “djimi traore effect”….but in fact Sakho is extremely effective in what he does.
His passing is very good, he’s quick, he’s strong, he’s dominant and maybe the only down point is he can be a little rash in the tackle but he wins more than his fair share.
After that performance tonight the last thing we should be talking about on here is Sakho.
Exactly mate! How’s this descended into a Sakho inquest. Paul Tomkins posted an article today where he asked – are people judging Sakho on Traore because they appear similar on the eye. I think some most definitely are.
Couldn’t agree more. That header back into the middle of play for West Ham’s third didn’t help his cause but he’s got much more potential than Skrtel has ever had or Lovren ever will have (although funnily enough it would be a tall ask to expect him to become the Kolo Toure of the undefeated Arsenal side anytime soon). Arguably looked like *the* centre half of the World Cup after Hummels in the summer. The ‘should have kept Agger/he looks awkward like Traore’ crowd can get to fuck.
Spot on, he was the defensive leader in a very good, organized and disciplined France side in the WC.
Spot on. He is slightly vulnerable to the high press but that’s something that can be worked on with his team mates; it’s as much to do with the movement around him as his ability to pick out pass. No player should be isolated by the press.
Fuckin brilliant tonight. Where are all the regular commenter’s, haha. Fuck em anyway, Lallana’s a lovely little player. Silky is exactly the right word for him. His first touch is similar to mine in my prime. I didn’t really get all the plaudits for Can after the Burnley game but I thought he was really good tonight. Surprised to see him as the one telling the defence to get out and doing the talking. Would have expected Skrtel or Sakho to have done that. I thought he could have done better for their goal but did very well. Coutinho was brilliant again. Henderson is much better there but I did spend the journey back arguing with a mate who asks me every week ‘what is it that Henderson does?’ I’ve given up now. Anyway, please! Just get 3 more bastard points against Leicester. Be flying then! 2015’s gonna be our year, haha.
Yep, Chaka’s the bees knees. Don’t know why you’re expecting leadership from Skrtl after all these years!
Haha, fair point
The possible rematch for the thick as pig shit player for Liverpool award when Balotelli came on had me going off my head. Lallana’s fluke goal reminded me of Babel vs Beskitas; imagine him, Shelvey and Balotelli in an idiot-off sharing the same oxygen. The Big Crunch would kick off in L4 – what a way to go! We’re up +2 on goal difference from last season’s 4-3 in the same fixture so I’m drinking the beer left over in the fridge from Christmas because it’s Christmas/New Year and fuck you!
Sakho impressed me a lot today, some of the passes he made at times took the piss, but it showed me that he has the confidence/arrogance to pull them off which I felt gave others the belief to express themselves too. This might sound crazy but it having somebody in the team who is a bit left-field like Sakho add something to the Liverpool team which has been lost since the departure of Luis Suarez. Liverpool under Rogders are at their best when they play on the edge and that has not happened for most of the season so far.
Of course Sakho missed placed pass nearly gave Swansea and equalizer but overall his passing was very astute and kept the movement of team flowing. In my opinion Sakho has not had a run of games to bed him into the English game but if does get the chance, he can become a vital clog in the first 11.
Lallana was outstanding. Hopefully tonight will do his self confidence/believe the world of good.
Coutinho wasn’t far behind either. If only that lad could shoot from distance consistently well he would be superb as it is, tonight he was merely excellent.
It’s not a ‘glamour’ position but I thought Can was as solid as any LFC defender I have seen since Carragher jacked it in.
Miniscule/irrelevant sample size, admittedly, but he looks a natural in that position
Yea, Coutinho needs to learn how to strike the ball cleaner from distance and he could double his goal tally.
Very happy with the performance. Sahko, Emre, Lallana, Coutinho all excellent. Sterling worked very hard. Wouldn’t make many, if any changes for New Years Day. Only Kolo for Skrtel which is enforced.
Totally agree. Can’t see it happening though, can you? The favourites will slot straight back in.
V Leicester suggests you may be right. Word is as start for Lovren and Gerrard is unlikely to spend the start on the bench. We’ll see…
Just realised Skrtel is out due to yellows. Also heard that Gerrard will be fee to move and not pushed for a contract renewal. My feeling is that FSG has spoken, particularly as BR has also announced we will not be spending this window. I hope to God he doesn’t mean Mignolet has redeemed himself – we need a GK at the very least.
Thought Coutinho was mesmerising tonight (yeah, shooting aside, as usual). Playing like that, the ball sticks to his feet and he unlocks defences at will. And Can put in one of the strongest, most assured performances I’ve seen all season.
Last week I was advocating going long ball for a few months, hitting the big men, I did say I know fuck all about tactics and shape. But I do feel the game and that felt great.
Brilliant to watch tonight, felt like a real old style Anfield evening game but on TV the crowd was dead quiet, I could hear the players shouting.
Can was faultless, like to see him higher up, see what else he can do.
Sterling every lucky not to have been sent off, very silly thing to do seeing as we have no other options up front
Balo fluffed his lines, he looked so self conscience when he came on, I think he’s not going to get any better any time soon.
Hopefully Strurridge back in a few weeks too.
Keep up the writing Neil, and the other columnists, you’re able to put into words how I feel. This site is becoming an addiction, I need a hit after each game.
Happy New Year all
Enjoyed tonight’s performance (except my 14 year old lad did my head in on the way to the ground so I wouldn’t speak to him for the whole first half. Kids eh?). Can was assured at the back, Sakho is madness and calmness rolled into one, and he’s brought something into the defence in last few games (aggression and decisiveness in the tackle- even if it doesn’t come off, it’s better than the dithering Chuckle Brothers to me to you that we’ve seen since the season started). Hendo looked better in CM. And Brendan had fallen on a front three of pace, trickery and no Mario that is working and is as close to what we had last season as anything else. Mention for the two wing backs – you see, if your wing backs are Moreno and Manquillo rather than Johnson and Enrique, it works, Brendan, it really does. Happy New Year. 1st January, we go again….
Still not happy with my lad, though we enjoyed the game and got back home to watch it on TV again (in silence!!)
Starting to not be able to take my eyes off Coutinho whenever he has the ball. I think a few successful dribbles early on in the game is what he needs to really kick start his engine. Also, despite his Burnley performance, I’m starting to really enjoy Markovic as well. But mostly I just enjoy watching this Liverpool. One that is dead fast and just a bit bonkers.
Happy and healthy New Year to everyone at TAW. Keep up the good work
There will be much lamenting and gnashing of teeth for the Rodgers Out crowd. Not only did we do poetry in motion, we did it with a whole lot of summer signings. You know, all those rubbish lads.
Which reminds me, what a great impact sub in young Markovic. I know I’d hate to be running up and down the pitch for 75 minutes and then see those flowing locks waiting for the electric board to call his number. His passing looks much sharper, and I love that I had absolutely no idea what position he was coming on for. It would have completely done my head in (and Garry Monk’s) if he replaced Manquillo, but it seemed utterly plausible at the time.
As for Jonjo, he won’t be thrilled to see that flying elbow again, and probably even less so when he sees how lazy (yes, lazy) he was to allow Lallana waltz past for the second goal without even breaking into a trot. Watch it again, the boy simply walks back to goal as Lallana picks up Coutinho’s sumptuous backheel and proceeds to put it in the back of the net.
And I’m thrilled that people are finally jumping aboard the Sakho love train with me. I just love that man’s whole élan. We were all about characters last season – every player had a little persona, like they were in some eminently watchable WWII pic where each grunt has a distinctive little singularity. We need more characters on the pitch, which is why I like Sakho and Moreno so much.
Now let’s hope we have Cech and Lacazette waiting to give an awkward thumbs up around Anfield on the first day of the window. Character’s good and all, but we need a bit more class to sparkle things up on either end.
So one good performance in 25 games and all of a sudden the Rodgers Out crowd were full of shit?
Despite the fact the Rodgers Out crowd came to that conclusion after months and months of evidence that he’d lost the plot?
Despite the fact the good performance came after Rodgers chose a team different than the one he otherwise would have selected had others been fit enough? Last night, Rodgers would have picked Bad Jones, Glen Johnson, Dejan Lovren and Steven Gerrard if they were fit enough to play the 90. You think we’d have won 4-1 and played well with those 4 on the park?
One good performance at home vs a team with a tenth of our budget was all it took for Rodgers to be the man again?
As the kids say – fucking lolz.
Best team performance this season, and without a proper striker. Pleased to see Rodgers drop his landlord, let’s hope it continues.
A final note on Sakho. All the talk when Lovren came in was of a front-foot defender, an organizer and leader who will win his individual battles when we already had that player. What kind of message was that sending to Sakho, who is all these things and more. He’ll win his battles and first balls all day long. He’s not the finished article, he’s rash at times and a little vulnerable to the high press, but a good coach will iron out those problems, he’s still young and has bags of potential but I fear he’ll move on in the summer.
The Sakho/Can changes have made us more solid and added physicality to the team,
Two misplaced passes from the pair all night, granted one from Sakho was a howler but he is light years ahead of Lovren,
Everybody looked comfortable in this system and the pressing early doors threw Swansea and got the crowd going,
Cheers for all the efforts in 2014 lads really love this site and I’m not sure if I would actually be able to jog without a podcast in my ears although it would stop me talking to myself midrun if it was just music !!!
Good win with an eye pleasing performance. Lucas was again supeb, not prefect but does his job so well. Take Gerrard off his toes and he is so muchmore effective.
We’re still mid table with a lot of ground to makeup. However if this Liverpool team turns up and not the one that featured against Burnley, Palace and Newcastle, we might make it back to the Champions League! Rodgers, please pick a team on merit and not based on who you can’t or won’t drop. If so, Can is a shoe in.
Can we talk about that ball from Can in the first half a bit more (yes you all know the one). If that doesn’t give centre mid 5 more yards next game nothing will. I’m buzzing, and we can still get more points than last year. Not taking 84 points yet!
and love to you all too . just have to say that the swans are pants on the road .
Oohh did one of our players make a mistake over 90mins?? Oohh sack rodgers, put the team in the stocks and throw rotten fruit at them. tossers!!
A good, entertaining performance and that’s what I go for.
Just what we needed. Truly sublime.
No Gerrard? No Lovren? No lumbering front man (til late on)? More pace and movement?
Hendo playing in centre mid? Lucas at DM? Sakho, our best centre back by the proverbial mile, playing centre back? Markovic not playing left wing back?
We win 4-1 playing well? Who’d have thought it? Who’s argued for all these things since September? Put your hand up.
Fragility is never far away. We were so passive and shit scared for the 15 minutes before half time and just after they scored – the mentality of the team is still shot, which is understandable. Only more performances like this will eliminate periods like those.
I hope we’ve hit rock bottom and are now on our way back to something like half decent. I hope this isn’t the bounce of a dead cat – after all, this is one decent effort after a filthy run out vs Burnley. But even if it’s the former, we need circa 42 points from the remaining 19 games to get 4th, and thats without looking at goal difference being improved massively. Can we finish 13-3-3? Doubt it, but fuck knows if we have a good trans….fer win……..no, we can’t.
Can we beat Leicester and win 3 games in a row for the first time this season? Yes.
It’s good winning and playing well, isn’t it?