1 Oct 2014

Confirmed LFC XI vs. Basel: BR springs £38m surprise; lightweight team a worry?

Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers has named a very attacking line-up for tonight's Champions League clash with FC Basel, but there are a couple of omissions that may come as a surprise. [Scroll to bottom for post-match discussion].

FULL TEAM: Mignolet, Manquillo, Lovren, Skrtel, Henderson, Gerrard, Markovic, Sterling, Coutinho, Balotelli

SUBS: Jones, Toure, Moreno, Lucas, Lallana, Lambert, Borini

The biggest surprise is the relegation of Adam Lallana and Alberto Moreno to the bench, with Jose Enrique and Coutinho coming into the team instead.

Lallana had his best game for Liverpool against Everton at the weekend, so it seems a little counter-productive to suddenly put the blockers on his momentum, but perhaps it's an injury management issue.

Given the personnel, a 442 diamond formation makes sense:

-------------- Mignolet

Manquillo -- Skrtel - Lovren ----- Enrique

--------------- Gerrard

--------- Hendo ------- Markovic

-------------- Coutinho

-------- Sterling -- Balotelli

4231 also works:

-------------- Mignolet

Manquillo -- Skrtel - Lovren ----- Enrique

------------ Hendo -- Gerrard

--- Sterling -- Coutinho ----- Markovic

---------------- Balotelli

Either way, I can't help feeling that this team is a little on the lightweight side. Is there enough defensive discipline and physical presence with Sterling, Coutinho, Markovic in the same team?

Additionally, with that front-line, it probably means that Henderson will spend most of the game being a water-carrier, doing the donkey work for Gerrard, and covering the inevitable gaps left by Coutinho et al.

And so much for the brief resurgence of Suso. After a brief period of being in Rodgers' good books, the Spaniard is now back in the Anfield wilderness. Great job, Brendan!

Ultimately, I'll always support a more attacking line-up over the more cautious option, and there's enough talent in the starting line-up to get a positive result.

My prediction: Still 2-2.

Author:



319 comments:

  1. Just flip Couts and Lazar in that diamond.

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  2. Its damn clear that BR doesnt rate SUSO..But I want to why?

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  3. Doubt Markovic will be played in midfield. Not sure if he ever has.


    Henderson and Coutinho ahead of Gerrard would make the most sense.

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  4. Nevergonnacrackthecode7:20 pm, October 01, 2014

    rodgers why you putting leiva in squad ahead of rossiter?

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  5. Finally a question with a bit of sense from you...

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  6. Ruined Suso's career? I mean seriously get a grip.

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  7. Nevergonnacrackthecode7:42 pm, October 01, 2014

    how dare you!
    are you trying to insult me ?


    rodgers has ruined susos career players at his age play at the highest level while his on the third bench

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  8. Suso is 20 years old. You are the one insulting yourself.

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  9. Come On Guys. Who cares. First away game in 5 years... Let's enjoy the moment...

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  10. Nevergonnacrackthecode7:44 pm, October 01, 2014

    no you are sniping which goes againts the rules
    by telling me i ahve no grip

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  11. If I was sniping then Jaimie would remove my post.

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  12. Nevergonnacrackthecode7:51 pm, October 01, 2014

    early but coutinho decision making has been awful

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  13. Nevergonnacrackthecode7:54 pm, October 01, 2014

    markovic never shoots
    sturridge needs to show him the way

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  14. Nevergonnacrackthecode7:59 pm, October 01, 2014

    enrique
    oh my god

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  15. The one thing Markovic has shown is that he is lightning quick! I think this guy needs to be converted into a striker.

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  16. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:01 pm, October 01, 2014

    why does balotelli always go far post?

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  17. We need to go two upfront.

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  18. Our defence looking very nervous as usual.

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  19. We are getting worse as the minutes tick by.

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  20. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:15 pm, October 01, 2014

    thats not the solution
    wrong solution
    balotelli for me is the anti liverpool
    he is completly different to how lfc play or played last season

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  21. Why is it the wrong solution? What problems are we causing Basel at the moment?

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  22. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:18 pm, October 01, 2014

    thats because balotelli running destroys all option


    from now on we need jerome sinclair he is so similar to sturridge

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  23. I think Rodgers is a bit blind to be honest.


    4-2-3-1 IS NOT WORKING and has not worked all season long.

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  24. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:21 pm, October 01, 2014

    rodgers is not great
    but like me he know lfc have only 4 strikers who can play uptop
    not sterling not markovic they are midfielders


    balotelli,lambert ,borini,sturridge


    one is injured
    balo and lambo are too simmilar
    while borini is borini


    so ablo is only option
    you keep thinking sterling can play upfront but me and rodgers knows he cant

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  25. Yet you questioned me why I had a problem with 4-2-3-1 recently???

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  26. We have just got to keep possession upfield - giving ball away to easily ..
    If we start defending deep ( yet again ) we will concede

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  27. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:24 pm, October 01, 2014

    look we should ahve got sanchez we could not break wage barrier for him so we got someone who we dont need

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  28. That is the 4-2-3-1 formation for you.


    Show me a one match this season playing this formation where we have been convincing.

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  29. are you talking about liverpool or basle

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  30. i dont like mondays tell me why

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  31. Exactly what relevance does your comment have to my reply?

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  32. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:29 pm, October 01, 2014

    learn someone how to take set peices

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  33. We dont look like we will ever score again - if we lose B R JOB looking ever more precarious - HE HAS LOST THE PLOT

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  34. 4-2-3-1


    It will save our season. NOT!

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  35. Sanchez isMAGNIFICENT for Arsenal - THANKS PHIL THOMPSON for ensuring we never got him

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  36. so that he can run into excellent positions and never shoot ?

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  37. Sanchez has not been very consistent for Arsenal but this is one player who would have fitted in seamlessly with our style of play. Pity he chose us over London.

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  38. Is 2-2 your default prediction Jaimie? Bloody hell

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  39. Basel are going to score which will see us lose if we do not start showing some intention to win the game.

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  40. He is still young. With the correct coaching this player can become a monster.

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  41. Again, do you ever think before you type away at your keyboard? I don't think you do. There is rewarding players for form, and then there's completely ignoring an experienced UCL player for a 17 year old kid who's only ever played a Carling Cup match. That's just crazy and utterly stupid. Please think before you say things.

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  42. What this game is shown is Basel are not used to pressure. We have put them under pressure so many times and when we have got the ball, we have just lost it. Lot of gaps in midfield. Lallana needs to come on.

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  43. I have noticed a trend that whenever he predicts that scoreline, something bad happens.

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  44. No idea why he does it, it's like an African child dying every time Bono claps his hands.

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  45. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:43 pm, October 01, 2014

    all you downers
    bright side we have still not conceded
    its been 135 mins we only conceded 1 goal
    woooooooooooooooooooooooooooow!
    give rodgers a new contract

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  46. Basel have some good scalps in this comp its easy to under estimate them just seeing Ludogrets taking it up to Real it can be a funny game.

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  47. Basel are a good side. There is no doubting that. I think Rodgers dropped the ball by not playing Lallana. The ease with which Basel counter is crazy. Something needs to be done. On the bright side, Coutinho seems to be back.

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  48. usual Liverpool strategy play well and your on the bench....we seem to have lost all ability of a short passing game to keep possession and create a gap...tino and lazer are poor

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  49. I think Coutinho has done fine. He has just not got the ball much.

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  50. lets hope he gets time,

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  51. he flatters to deceive for me

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  52. If we change the formation/tactics then maybe there would not be any issues yet we persist with something that does not work.

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  53. no individual is playing that bad or that good but as a whole we just look so lacklustre and insipid

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  54. Q: Does Ballotelli think he'll drown if he runs into the channel?

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  55. Because the setup is not right.

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  56. next goal will win this

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  57. Why are we still playing with one upfront and two holding midfielders?

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  58. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:54 pm, October 01, 2014

    idk why you think two holding mids are bad
    99% of teams have two holding mids
    chelsea,city,arsenal,bayern, dourtmount

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  59. Our final ball needs to be a lot better.

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  60. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:55 pm, October 01, 2014

    it cant not be right every game


    rodgers has the right tactics wrong personnal

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  61. How is it working for us. Please explain.

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  62. its logans white whale

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  63. And so does our defence

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  64. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:56 pm, October 01, 2014

    so lets play no holding mid like against west ham
    if you only play one cdm you lose because he will be targeted like gerrard is every time we play it


    we played two holding vs arsenal 5-1
    there was no problem then

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  65. Our defence is an absolute shambles yet Mingolet is get the wrong end of the stick.


    You can bring any keeper into this team, he will look average.

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  66. OH COME ON MARKOVIC! JUST ONE GOOD FINAL BALL!?

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  67. SERIOUSLY, THIS TEAM GIVES A FINAL BALL LIKE BLOODY UNDER-12S TEAM...

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  68. For a team that can't defend corners WHY do we give sooooo
    many away ?

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  69. I think its because we have no viable option to play as the third central midfielder with both Allen, Can out and Lucas incapable of playing anywhere but defensive midfield

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  70. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:59 pm, October 01, 2014

    funniest goal i ahve ever seen


    we should just laugh

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  71. MARKOVIC, AGAIN, WHAT ARE YOU DOING!? JUST F***ING SHOOT LAD!

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  72. NOW STERLING. COME. ON. DUDE. ACRES OF ROOM THERE TO PASS TO BALOTELLI.

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  73. We were slaughtered vs West Ham because of having Gerrard and Lucas in the same midfield.


    We played 4-3-3 in the 5-1 win vs Arsenal. Even the experts from EPL index will prove this.

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  74. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:04 pm, October 01, 2014

    we werre playing diamond that day lucas was not an attacking mid


    hendo was palying cdm with gerrard in that game

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  75. OH JUST GO HOME MARKOVIC. YOU SHOULD HAVE SCORED.

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  76. I agree though. We dont have the personnel to play 4-2-3-1. We need a goalscoring center forward with good movement we have Balotelli. We need natural no.10's who have a mastery in passing, shooting and dribbling we have......... whoever is in our starting line up today. I hate 4-2-3-1. I prefer to play how Man Utd played with Cantona and Cole or Teddy and Shearer i.e a striker who likes to come deep.... Man Utd Built a fortress on this formula.

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  77. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:05 pm, October 01, 2014

    i give up
    lets just focus on the league now
    quicker we out better it is

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  78. I think you have the wrong match.

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  79. We have no Flair..... simples

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  80. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:06 pm, October 01, 2014

    no i give up
    you clearly dont know what a holding mid is

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  81. B R OUT - SACK HIM HENTY - HE HAS LOST IT

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  82. He has been shit this season

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  83. Lucas did not even play in the 5-1 win. What are you on about?

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  84. okay I'm getting pretty fed up. Every time we have a chance, we bottle it. Poor shot, poor pass, poor control.

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  85. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:09 pm, October 01, 2014

    simon mignolet go now
    coutinho seriously man you are on the down curve
    manquillo, markovic you guys have no final ball and look so poor
    balotelli you clearly a mistake luckily we have origi


    gerrard consider retiring and going out on the top of your game we cant sacrifice a position just because you can score penalties

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  86. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:10 pm, October 01, 2014

    luckily
    origi will replace balotelli next season
    ibe will replace markovic


    my only worry is we lose sterling to a top team

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  87. ...What did Enrique do wrong!!!???

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  88. This referee is bloody terrible. Even the ESPN commentator mentioned so.

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  89. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:10 pm, October 01, 2014

    i blame the mother

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  90. JOHN HENRY - B R HAS WASTED ALL YOUR MONEY

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  91. Let's just hope Ludo can hold Real

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  92. Let's not blame the referee for our inept tactics & formation etc.


    Rodgers just does not seem to want to see the light.

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  93. Sterling looks fed up!

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  94. Again, I am fed up. Markovic, uppercut yourself. Raheem, uppercut yourself.

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  95. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:14 pm, October 01, 2014

    why dont you go apply for the lfc job ?
    its not as easy as you make it seem


    one holding dont work maybe if we had a schniderlin or matic


    its teh players they are bad

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  96. Change the formation. It is that simple.


    We are not out there to win the game. We are waiting for the opposition to score and I have been proven right once again.

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  97. FFS did I blame him for what's going on?

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  98. i dont know blowing 200m seems easy enough to me

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  99. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:15 pm, October 01, 2014

    he will ahve his pick
    city,chelsea,real,barca , bayern ,psg


    i cant blame him to be honest

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  100. Yep! He's had chances though but Markovic has been so ineffective. Ballotelli needs a partner upfront.

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  101. we have wide players who run in straight lines. pointless

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  102. For once im happy we are losing......Brenda's buys are just not doing it

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  103. he should be up front instead of impersonating a midfielder

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  104. so how many times does markovic have to lose the ball before he realizes his potential and becomes the next ronaldo ?

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  105. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:18 pm, October 01, 2014

    sterlings shot who saw it

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  106. Lallana is a proper footballer. We need another three like him

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  107. Told you! What a chance for Sterling!

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  108. Why didn't he start FFS

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  109. Hit the flipping target at least! Flip sake!

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  110. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:21 pm, October 01, 2014

    if we gonna lose go all out
    dont want europa league football
    finished 4th dont want 3rd

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  111. Just as Lucas and Gerrard cant play in the same side neither can Sterling and Markovic. Pace for pace sake. and coutinho........smh

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  112. Why did we go with 4-2-3-1 FFS!


    Get rid of it!!!

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  113. sterling, hang your head in shame. I'm sick of you flapping at shots.

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  114. It's not his ability, it's attitude.
    He has made comments the club were unhappy with on twitter and I believe he was also fined by Almeria last season for missing or being late for training. He strikes me as thinking that he is entitled to a spot in the squad and team far more than he is willing to show it.

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  115. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:21 pm, October 01, 2014

    we clearly playing 433

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  116. i think the games up ....most teams seem to have tactically worked out how to nullify liverpool

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  117. Markovic is making me wish we kept Downing! We're looking to Sterling for everything!

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  118. yeah we're back to 4-1-4-1

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  119. hes trying to hard because no one is stepping up ...its a very average display from a very average team

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  120. Where's our midfield, their number 8 is all over us!

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  121. and he isnt good enough to be our talisman yet...... nowhere near

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  122. Now only are we going 2 upfront. Too late now.

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  123. Why Lambert and not Borini?

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  124. Rodgers has BLOWN 120 MILLION POUNDS

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  125. So many offsides! Sort it out!!!

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  126. we're so orthodox without Suarez its untrue. If I know what our players are going to do next then rest assured so do the opposition

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  127. BORRING BORRING FOOTBALL FROM LIVERPOOL 0

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  128. Wake up call I'm afraid .... these are the players BR bought to compete in CL !

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  129. Come on. 8 minutes left. Show some fight...

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  130. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:27 pm, October 01, 2014

    lallana ,moreno
    so wipe 37m out of that

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  131. Markovic...................

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  132. well if you think them two are worth 37m okay

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  133. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:29 pm, October 01, 2014

    let hendo take the free kicks

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  134. Shite Real winning

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  135. turn pass, turn pass, turn pass, turn pass....... then kick and run...

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  136. Why is BR speaking one thing, doing another thing and bringing in another team this season.......What happened to LFC? This is looking pedestrian and disturbing. 20 m for Marko is highly suspect, bringing Remy for 9 was better... Super Mario is nothing delivering on all cylinders and is minutes away from a red card I am afraid.Lallana should have played from the start. I am afraid to watch LFC's next match....

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  137. Chelsea and City play with one. Toure and Fabregas are not holding mids. Arsenal play with one at a push. Arteta or Flamini but the others like Wilshere and Ramsey are not holding mids.

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  138. Come on! Such awful passing! What am I seeing?!!!

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  139. im a bit bias toward balo but i think hes been one of our better players.....

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  140. I said we will regret not buying Remy! Our transfers are garbage!

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  141. They are giving us a lesson on how to defend .....

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  142. Markavic is actually as bad as he looked in his YouTube clips before we bought him . I trusted that there was something the scouts seen that was worth 20m (wow 20m)

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  143. I had no idea Ballotelli was this immobile. But our scouts did. In essence We signed two target men this season and as ive posted before they dont work for us.

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  144. WBA are licking their lips. Let's just go with 2 holding midfielders again and let them walk all over us.


    Oh and can somebody teach our defence how to defend especially at set pieces?

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  145. POOR POOR POOR POOR POOR!!!!!!!!!!! WHAT HAS HAPPENED?!!!!!

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  146. I would rather have Iago Aspas out there. I gaurantee he would provide more for us than Ballotelli and Lambert combined.

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  147. No Flair

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  148. i didn't realize he was so slow he needs to bulk down a bit..but truth be known most of the team are poor lovren is nothing special and is no better than sako

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  149. ...Stop blaming it on your '2 holding mids' theory! That game had nothing to do with 2 holding mids. It had to do with our absolutely poor the exection and desire was. Liverpool just seemed to not give a flying f***.

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  150. I posted the same thing last week. He has lived up to his youtube hype

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  151. I mean every time Lambert controls the ball it flicks up in the air...

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  152. Brendan Rodgers OUT!!!

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  153. Agreed may as well kept Ibe.

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  154. Not one performance this season has been convincing this season when we have gone 4-2-3-1 unless you want to prove otherwise.


    It has to be scrapped ASAP!

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  155. And bring in who? Go on, I'm very interested to hear?

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  156. I cannot dcide what's worse the performance or some of the comments on here

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  157. rogers is in trouble its a reasonable assumption to say we can be out of cl and out of the running for top 4 by Christmas. There is a 70 to 30 chance wba will turn us over

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  158. Any Italian manager.

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  159. i not sure anything can top that performance

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  160. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:41 pm, October 01, 2014

    exactly hendo was not playing holding mid just a deep lying midfielder liek fabregas,ramsey and yaya do


    but logan is too stuck up to see that

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  161. We would have been better served keeping Carroll if we were going to go down the target man route. We have signed strikers who wont score

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  162. Skrtel Skrtel lol lol what an assist by him today :(
    no top 4 & no CL for us next year :(

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  163. Nevergonnacrackthecode9:42 pm, October 01, 2014

    is cesar prandelli in a job

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  164. in a nut shell we have become crap

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  165. please sack rodgers - he has no idea - best save our season and SACK B R NOW

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  166. I... I just can't even...

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  167. Poor performance, awful passing, no killer instinct, too many offsides!

    Coutinho- I don't know what has happened to him but he needs to sort it out. Better than before but still poor.

    Markovic- Not a £20M player by any means. Average.

    Balotelli- Clearly needs a striking partner. Very immobile, no pace.

    Enrique- Glad he is back but same old same old. Was Moreno injured?

    Lallana- Why not start him?

    I'm not pleased at all. We are so predicable. We can't rely just on Sterling, he's a kid.

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  168. Edit: Typo.....I meant Super Mario is not delivering on all cylinder.

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  169. Liverpool 0 West Brom 2

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  170. some players will make it but most of our forwards in the squad today wont. Suarez lifted their game by 63 percent

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  171. Carroll's a sick note so I'm glad he's gone.

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  172. Its time to start PANICKING

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  173. this kid be better off to Madrid if the rumors are true

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  174. I hope Rodgers gets the sack in the morning, this is total none-sense we are going for relegation with this form and style of play.

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  175. it was time to start panicking against the saints

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  176. I'm just surprised do many people are surprised.

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  177. but it clearly wasn't the major issue today. it was absolutely criminal final touch/pass from the players. We still could have comfortably won that with 2 holding mids if our execution was better.

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  178. At least I got a smile from this....good one:)

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  179. Admire your optimism.

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  180. Will he's heart be up to it?

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  181. I never wanted him and dont rate Carrol in the slightest, but we didnt need to sign a lump to go up there this season. BR drank the media's BS potion in believing we needed a game changer of the bench. We needed a game changer IN the first 11.

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  182. As a straight replacement for Gerrard?

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  183. At least Sakho's not a scapegoat!

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  184. so was alan wells

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  185. There was no need to sign him. We would have got more value signing Hoilett for 5mill

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  186. Oops, when he said Gerard I thought the Liverpool family might have suffered a second disaster of the evening.

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  187. It's true mate, we're that rubbish!

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  188. Sorry but how many times does it have to be repeated that Balotelli is struggling on his own?


    Even a blind man will be able to tell you that. Nothing about the tactics/formation Rodgers is persisting with suggests that we are going to win games.


    If nobody can see this then let me tell you know that we are ion for many more disappointments unless things are changed.

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