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Sunday, September 18, 2005

0-0 stalemate helps Chelsea all the more

Disappointing 0-0 draw at Anfield, our third so far. Plus side is we haven't conceded, the only team along with Chelsea in that position at the moment. Minus side is obviously not scoring at all, much less enough. One goal in four games is not Premiership title quality. One win in four games is not looking Premiership title quality. Rafael Benitez is looking to build a side that can strangle the game from the best of them that comes. We were defensive enough to quiet Utd but not attacking enough to threaten them into panic. At the end of the day, both sides didn't want to lose more than they wanted to win. We were aware of Utd's attacking prowess, their formation should business after Villarreal, 4-3-3 with Roy Keane returning miraculously, having been said to be out for weeks.

Benitez went on to say afterwards that the goals will come, and I believe they will. If Newcastle can go to Ewood Park and score 3 without the Rovers replying after their barren run, then Liverpool will start hitting the goals. We can do it in the Champions League, we will transfer it to the Premiership. At the least it wasn't a performance that allowed another easy shot to go in. Considering last season, we were not competitive enough against Utd. Benitez isn't looking to suddenly jump into 1st place after the CL win. He almost has the players he wants, now he wants the mentality needed to make them strong, to anyone.

I think the players will look on today and should consider resolving what and where and how, for this non-scoring run is to come to an end now. Perhaps that is down to the players chosen, the formation, or the players themselves. At the end of the day, they are in good positions to score, it is, as Michael Owen stated, a matter of time and when we score more than one, we will score more often. Stuart Pearce said after Man City's defeat to Bolton today's defeat that "someone will pick up the tab for us getting beaten, I am sure of that."

Someone will be getting a similar bill when Liverpool start hitting more goals. And I don't care who.



Blogger T said...

As a neutral I found yesterday's match to be quite predictable.

Liverpool are the home team but they play just one man up-front- and that is the quite unprolific Peter Crouch.

Man Utd again set-up with a three man central midfield with Rooney and Ronaldo quite ineffectual in the hole. RVN craves crosses in the box a'la from Beckham or Neville- but yet again he was starved.

Nil-nil was predicted in my household very early on. Only individual brilliance or an error was to gain the three points- but neither came. Mourinho must have watched the match with a smile on his face.

Everyone is attempting to copy his formation- but only he has mastered it.

Man Utd should get back to a fearsome 4-4-2. Since implementing 4-5-1 last season their goals ratio has plummeted.

And while the defensive 4-5-1 may work for the Pool in Europe when up against excellent teams- Benitez has to be more adventurous when it comes to the Premiership.

9/19/2005 12:31 pm

Blogger Skippy said...

I agree with TS.

To add further, I don't understand why so many teams are adopting this silly formation. I have written in the past in relation to England, and I will add again, for 4-5-1 to work you need to have quality players on the flanks, like Chelsea do.

Liverpool don't have good enough players to play this formation. They must revert to 4-4-2.

9/20/2005 10:46 am

Anonymous Tripping said...

Agree, so many draws across the Premiership. It used to be the point was to accumulate points. In Europe knock-out rounds a more defensive approach makes a lot more sense. But when it works for teams like Everton and Bolton, how can you argue?

9/21/2005 1:16 am

Blogger RedsMan said...

All good points. In Europe it is more effective as the European teams take a different approach even if the formation is the same.

And as for the 4-4-2, couldnt agree more, I implore for this formation eagerly and urge for Crouch to have Cisse. Not only is Crouch not suitable as the lone striker, but the point was to use his height to knock on high balls or hold it up for a second striker.

With Sunday, RB must have been looking to withhold Utd rather than seek points. Now it is time to seek points, that is another way of withholding the opposition, attack is another form of defence.

Sympathetically, Liverpool are looking to soon confront the team that seem unstoppable and they have to mentally have the kind of balance with focus and determination to thwart them. Chelsea twice in quick succession isn't any team's welcoming duo of fixtures.


9/21/2005 9:54 am


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