Based in London and writing for a global audience our aim is to produce EliteFootballTalk. Enjoy the site and feel welcome to join in our discussion on the beautiful game.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Why Liverpool may struggle this season

I have been following Liverpool's pre-season games. The stats read played 7, won 2, drawn 2 lost 3.

I am not normally too concerned about friendly matches, as they are all about getting players fit and ready for the new season. Perhaps I shouldn't therefore read too much into Liverpool's disappointing form, but there are several reasons why I am concerned that Liverpool may struggle this season:

1. Absence of Alonso - no doubt he will be missed. Rafa will replace him with Lucas until Aquilani is fit. That's the double wammy here - Lucas is a poor player and Aquilani sounds as though he won't be fit for another 2 months. He will also need time to settle into the English football (not a certainty for a player who has only ever played in the Italy). Alonso's absence has created a massive void in Liverpool's midfield and I cannot see any current Liverpool player who can come in a do as good a job.

2. Defensive frailties - Carragher, Agger, Skrtel and Aurelio have all suffered injuries in pre- season and are doubts for the start of the season. Johnson is a good signing but Liverpool look seriously vulnerable in defence when they replace any one of the above with their younger reserve players.

3. Lack of wingers - this is a old old problem and for some reason has not been rectified. Kuyt on the right and Benayoun on the left - where is the width?

4. Gerrard and Torres cannot play every game - if they could, they would be supermen. If either one of these players gets injured, Liverpool virtually lose 50% of their attack. Liverpool have no decent replacements for these players - Voronin, Ngog, Babel are nowhere near as good.

5. Will other players want to leave? Mascherano has already given Barcelona the green light to make an offer. Thankfully they didn't, but how long will it be until he and others get fed up?

6. Lack of transfer funds - Liverpool have to sell to buy - period. They simply don't have the power in the transfer market like Chelsea, Man Utd, Man City etc do. Liverpool risk being left behind.

7. No new stadium - as much as we love Anfield, it is too old and too small. Liverpool need that new stadium built asap to generate the revenue to even get close to the likes of Man Utd. The stadium won't be built any time soon however.

8. Pressure - Liverpool came very close to wining the league last season that there will be even more pressure this time round for them to go one better. Ths slightest sign of a stuggle will pour the pressure on Rafa. 3 season without a trophy - how long can this go on for?

9. The Americans - enough said.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

well said, we will b shit again this year. the only problem is "we have got no money" !!!! but the yanks can waste a lot of our money for their trips n enjoy, fucking bastards!!!

8/09/2009 10:58 am

Anonymous Anonymous said...

way to go. right off our chances before the first game is played. you offer the kind of support we can do without.

8/09/2009 11:14 am

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Total rubbish.

Pre season?????? I didnt think the phrase needed explaining.

Remember last year, how good Voronin was? How dreadful the rest of the team were?

Dont make up a season of predictions on a few friendlies with understrenght players.

If were going down that line of thought, Micky Owens gonna bang in 30 and instead of crockin it up, actually his bones grow to twice the thickness and strength

8/09/2009 11:16 am

Blogger Conor said...

Ridiculous article. Really is a load of generalized boll*cks based on the views of the tabloids.

8/09/2009 11:18 am

Anonymous Ian said...

if this is "elitefootballtalk" I'm a Dutchman.

Cheer up lads there's plenty to be positive about.

We have virtually the same side as last year, with the exception of Alonso. The fear that Torres gets injured and misses half the season is real, but it is not a reason to suggest we will do worse than last year as he did miss half of last season, and we still came second.

Lucas, Babel, Ngog, Insua, will all be one year more experienced and in my opinion be much more influential than last season, in particular Lucas and Insua.

We do have real width; Albert Riera. Kuyt and Benny score goals, and with the addition of Johnson we have more width in the ideal way that the system we play allows. A real significant improvement on last season. He has played really well in the friendlies too.

Granted, it is a concern that our central defenders are injured and that could cost us early on as it seems we can't ever rely on Agger to be fit when we need him. However, it appears that Rafa is going to buy cover, so hopefully that problem will be plastered over for the beginning of the season.

And finally, we will have the addition of Aquilani when fit who by all accounts is a class act, although I know nothing of the lad myself. And possibly another signing elsewhere, hopefully cover for Torres.

Plenty to be upbeat about. Besides, what everybody forgets is that you only have to be better than the team you are playing on the day. Which means for the premier league, for 32 games of the season we only have to be better than Man City, or Aston Villa or Spurs, which I no doubt we are. The other six games, we need to play well against Chelsea, Man U and Arsenal, which again, I dont think we are much worse than last season.

So come on. Reds for the title!!

8/09/2009 11:27 am

Blogger Hallos said...

Carra will be fit for the Spurs game by the way. Shocking article what a load of recycled tabloid rubbish.

8/09/2009 11:42 am

Blogger Mark said...

complete crap. same old clueless rubbish

1. alonso is gone, but there are other options. i think lucas will come of age this year, although he is a different kind of player than alonso. even discounting lucas' role, there are other options, such as putting gerrard back into midfield and having either voronin or benayoun in the 'gerrard role' behind torres. this is the prefered position for both of these players.

2. i imagine liverpool will sign a more experienced center back before the season starts.carra is meant to be ok for the spurs game, too. aurelio is out for a while, but we have 2 other left backs who are fit.

3. lack of wingers - benitez doesn't play with wingers and i doubt this will change. the width comes from the full backs - johnson and insua. wasn't quite there last year, cos arbeloa didn't have that pace natural attacking ability. just watch how much johnson gets forward this year, especially at home, against the stokes etc.

4.same can be said for other teams - who do utd have if rooney picks up an injury. none of thier forwards will be able to provide the impact of him. gerrard and torres are world class - you can't have world class backup too.

5.mascherano will be here this season. who knows what will happen next year, but if we win the league this year, thats all thats important.

6.benitez has sold for a decent amount this year. i imagine he has money sitting there, doesn't mean it has to be spent. maybe the kind of players he wants aren't available right now? maybe he wants to have funds left in january in case we need strengthening. maybe he's about to buy someone right now?

7. no new stadium. anfield isn't 'too old' but it is too small to generate the money that other clubs do. this doesn't impact our chances of winning the league this year though.

8. pressure - the one valid point in your post. it's unknown how they will cope with being tagged as contenders. i hope last seasons experience will be a positive thing, especially the way they played in the run in.

9. ok, you can have that one too.

8/09/2009 12:16 pm

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Complete Bollocks.
Don't worry be happy.
Trust Life and Trust Rafa.
We'll be there, this year.

8/09/2009 5:10 pm

Blogger RedsMan said...

OK, as a thorough fan, I have taken on board all said. SKG has made valuable points, based on his opinion. Some of you guys have just dismissed his opinion without a counter-point. So let's see what's to disagree with.....

1. "Absence of Alonso" - It is a big pity. Let's not forget his 07-08 form was mediocre and led way for RB to plug for Barry. But it had to be done - we dont hold onto unhappy players, or players wanting to leave. And in Aquilani, while we appear to have done a MON job in securing a player who isnt 100% fit, we do have interim options.

Gerrard could sit back into CM with Masch, with Kuyt behind Torres, Babel right, for one. Or we beef up a certain young Brazilian and get him in the rut of things. Who knows what will happen if he plays.

2. "Defensive frailties" - has been a spanner in the works recently, though I suspect they are knocks rather than injuries and we will have something substantial come next week. I would like Darby and Kelly going out there if need be, but we may face Keane and Defoe so they will have to be on their toes.

I think Carragher will be there with Agger. Insua should be available too.

3. "Lack of wingers" - We have Babel, Kuyt, Benayoun, Riera, Aurelio, Dossena, El Zhar off my head. Aurelio and Riera are not available, we can change to suit. Babel can come in, El Zhar is good enough but not sure he is focused enough. We have Benayoun. RB knows. I would have Babel and Benayoun wide, Kuyt behind Torres, or even Torres behind Kuyt!

4. "Gerrard and Torres cannot play every game" - I wouldn't bank on this myself, we shoul dhave alternative attacking prowess and options in the other players. Alonso wasnt a figurehead for attacking regularly. Our wide men can contribute more, so can the midfield. We had neither against Villa away and earned a bore-draw but a decent one, considering how AV went on over Barry and wanted to lynch us.

We seem unsettled and Alonso's loss is probably the reason. I hope RB can get them out of that rut by engaging them to share in the responsibilities Alonso provided, and hopefully we can cover for his absence, perhaps until Aquilani returns.

5. "Will other players want to leave?" - Mascherano wanted to leave owing to personal affairs. Maybe we have him for one season more. I'm not sure about being fed-up, they are the ones who carry the fight on the pitch. if we dont progress it is primarily down to them.

6. "Lack of transfer funds" - who do we need? Someone who can add to our scoring ability, sharpen it, enhance it, execute it. Score more from chances than we do, every game. That should eradicate the draws. We did this so well last season andf the majority of it wasnt down to Alonso. Is that someone Villa or Silva?

Money is tight, I imagine, but I also imagine it is tight as it is provided away from the club's finances. If RB felt compelled to seek a player, we should have the finances to accommodate him. Not a whole lot but then you dont need a whole lot to make a difference. Wenger refers.

7. "No new stadium" - not until 2012 kicks in. We have had Anfield for decades. I'm not in a hurry to leave it and we can only wait. In the meanwhile we will do with what we have.

8. "Pressure" - Yes, I agree. We want the title, and we are mocked over its absence. Not only that but other honours. We have a squad capable enough to take on the EPL - it's not an easy task, it took Ferguson some years before he tasted it in 1993. However, if it's not the title, we want other honours.

9. "The Americans" - Yes.....typically. The Glazers may do this behind closed doors, ours seem to not give a *****^%^%£. Rafa didnt like how things were going on upstairs, as it affected his decision-making downstairs. It was Valencia all over again. Someone upstairs had to give, and it was Parry. There should be nothing else to have a handbag thrown at between the owners and RB, just need to stabilise ourselves financially and on the pitch. Get the players hungry, mentally focused, and eager for the win.

8/09/2009 6:50 pm

Blogger Adelaidered said...

Have to be honest, this is a very negative view of the upcoming season. We may have lost 1 player, but 1 player does not make a team. All (I know that sounds easy) we have to do is convert home draws to win and the title is ours. Now do the same review on Manure, who have lost Tevez and that puffy winger coupled with that most of their 1st team are now at pension age and they will be lucky to avoid relegation!

8/10/2009 5:17 am

Blogger Skipper said...

Liverpool will be ok. Be postive SKG.

8/11/2009 10:57 pm

Anonymous Striker said...

Hi Guys
good to see you back!

Thanks Redsman for the kind words on SFS


8/12/2009 2:22 pm

Blogger SKG said...

i am sorry to sound negative, and trust me, i hope i am wrong and liverpool go on to have a great season.

8/12/2009 2:47 pm

Blogger SKG said...

Liverpool were very poor against Spurs today. I am worried.

8/16/2009 7:52 pm

Blogger SKG said...

Liverpool 1-3 Villa - I wish I never wrote this article now.

8/24/2009 10:14 pm


Post a Comment

<< Home


Locations of visitors to this page