THERE’S something about Leicester.
Sounds like the shittest ever film sequel that, doesn’t it? Where a fella pretending to have a disability, one whose face starts to melt the closer he gets to the city and a small-time crook with horrific dress sense battle it out to startup front for them. You can’t rule out the possibility that it is being filmed as we speak, like a cross between Any Given Sunday and the Truman Show, given that Jamie Vardy could quite conceivably play all three roles.
It is one of them places though that we really could do without. Maybe it’s because it takes about a month to get there from any major motorway in the country, or that they have auld monarchs buried willy nilly all over the gaff. Perhaps it is Kasabian. Yer, its deffo Kasabian. Maybe it’s the bullshit “arrgh” they still do. Maybe it’s just that whenever The Reds go there they tend to be absolutely shite.
A boss Robbie Fowler hat trick aside all I can remember is non-descript mings banging goal after goal against The Reds. Reckon that changes over the next two games but then I always think Liverpool are going to win.
Pre-match prediction: 3-1 to The Reds with us all wanting Jürgen Klopp to name the same team on Saturday only for him to go full strength and get beat 2-0 with a possession percentage of 94 per cent, 64 shots with 45 on target and one clear-cut chance.
By the way, what the fucking hell was that trumpet when the players were coming out then? Good lord. Get into these, Reds.
Prediction 1-0 The Reds. Danny Ings sausage dinner and hopefully not a double knee implosion.
It is getting a bit silly now this, isn’t it? All the focus will be on a lack of ruthlessness but the game changes on their lad heading a corner out, going a bit unconscious, them being forced to drag him off and his replacement changing the game, scoring the first and effectively putting it to bed.
You can rightly question The Reds’ response but you aren’t telling me there isn’t an element of poor fortune in there. They played well first half, alright second half and then got beat. As per then. Cop for these ratings and if you don’t like them, well you can either tell us why and back it up with a rationale argument or fuck the fuck off. It’s up to you. Before you start I’m a generous marker. If I was a teacher no fucker would be failing on my watch.
Danny Ward: 7
I can’t give him any higher because apart from pick the ball out of his net he had pretty much fuck all to do — a typical day’s work for a Liverpool ‘keeper at the minute. No chance with either goal followed up by a bit of watching our lads look good. Looks like he makes good decisions which I’m not sure any of the other ‘keepers do so. Would probably play him every game because I’m sick of the sight of Simon Mignolet and he’s better than Loris Karius.
Jon Flanagan: 5
Attacked the ball well. It was nice to see some arl arse defending and looked good first half when the team was a lot more compact. Not sure he is going to be good enough to stay much longer mind you, as his quality isn’t quite good enough when exposed and by Christ he will get exposed in this team. Unlucky for the first goal as Joe Gomez plays everyone onside and Wes Morgan is really, really big you know.
Joe Gomez: 6
The benefits and drawbacks of youth in one performance this. First half he was excellent, strong, quick and aggressive in the challenge, staying tight to his man and alongside Ragnar Klavan and Jordan Henderson helped to set the high tempo. At half time I’m considering sacking Degsi Lovren and making him captain. The goal does for him though. Played the world onside for the first goal (although it was a nice touch for the rest of the team except the back four to fuck off on the charge of the light brigade leaving a lovely big gap) and then seemed to lose all composure in everything else he did.
Ragnar Klavan: 6
I’m determined not to get drawn in any confirmation bias here and maybe I’ve gone too far the other way but I thought he did alright. Like Gomez was tight to his man, neat and tidy doesn’t do much wrong. Possibly a little slow for their goal but I don’t know, the ball goes in off a deflection into the only place it could go.
Andy Robertson: 8
Excellent first half, looks to have everything you need to be a good full back. He can defend, he can cross, his link-up play with Phil Coutinho was great and he was probably Liverpool’s most dangerous player first half. His attacking impact reduced in the second half because Coutinho wasn’t creating space for him anymore but he didn’t do much wrong. Unlucky for the first goal as he reacted a lot quicker than he did on Saturday to a similar situation, which despite not feeling like it, is promising in a way.
Jordan Henderson: 7
At his metronomic best first half but lost impact as the game wore on. Set the tempo well, tried to keep the team working and playing despite the obvious frustrations. Wasn’t helped out much in midfield second half but was one of the only ones who still had any composure left at the end.
Marko Grujic: 4
To be honest, I couldn’t remember his first name which probably reveals a lot. Not quite neat and tidy. Deffo wasn’t when he tripped over his own feet in their box. Extra point earned for giving their lad a bit of a clout in the grid, telling him to fucking get up and then realising where he was and patting him on the head. Immediately lost the extra point for the shite tackle on the edge of his box and subsequent lunge second half that had me convinced he was sent off. Think he might need to lend someone’s brain before he is any good, which might prove a tad tricky.
Georginio Wijnaldum: 6
Full of energy first half, breaking well but made a couple of poor decisions, chewing the ball when in space and picking the wrong pass a few times. Looked like he had been asked to impose himself a bit more in an attacking sense and nearly pulled it off. Got kneed in the arse and they hurt them. There is a bit of insight there for you. Don’t say I never teach you anything.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain: 4
Neat and tidy first half, aside from when he is trying to set someone up where he likes to take turns between twatting it out and under hitting everything. Linked up well with Coutinho from time to time but then as the game started to fall away from The Reds he turned into a chicken with no head.
His decision making needs some work and I’m trying to convince myself that Liverpool haven’t bought an absolute pudding. Took a point off for his sock game. Ludicrously overcomplicated. Three layers of tape, no layers of sock. End result was his legs ending up like Bubs off The Wire’s arms.
Philippe Coutinho: 8
Rusty, rusty, rusty, sublime, rusty. Made to look all the better after the match given the impact his removal had on Liverpool’s attacking play. His ability to create space for others was the pivotal reason for the difference between the two halves and his constant showing for the ball and threat was missed second half. Hopefully a pre planned change as he is so important to everything Liverpool do going forward.
Dominic Solanke: 8
The high point on a weird night. He looks a player. A proper centre forward, his movement was excellent, a couple of early turn and snapshots were unlucky and very difficult to defend against. He has got something about him – Big Paws on a Pup as your man Marlow (off The Wire) would say. Star in the making and how mad is it that it was his first professional start in England? I read that on Twitter somewhere so it could be pure bollocks. Don’t tell me I don’t research these things enough. He was unlucky not to score at least one as The Reds are every week. A perfect fit.
Ben Woodburn: 7
He is another one who is going to be brilliant. Fine margins this game, isn’t it? His cut inside and shot to the top bin goes in and The Reds win the game. Meanwhile, some crab runs the length of the pitch after touching it twice all game and lashes one top bin for them. I want to see him play, every week because he is a joy to watch. Could lend Grujic 60 per cent of his brain and still be intelligent on the ball.
Danny Ings: N/A
Got about 10 minutes, but handicapped by his hair which was like a Tudor monarch’s. Worked hard as always, good movement, unlucky with the one that span away from him.
Jürgen Klopp: 7
Looked like he might thrash someone after the game with a boot. Good.
Not sure where we go from here but I think I want to win on Saturday more than any other game in Liverpool’s history. Strap yourselves in for another dominating defeat then, eh?