19 Oct 2014

Confirmed LFC XI vs. QPR: £12m star dumped from the squad; surprise in midfield?

Glen Johnson and Jose Enrique return to the Liverpool first XI for today's must-win Premier League encounter with QPR.

FULL TEAM: Mignolet, Johnson, Skrtel, Lovren, Enrique, Gerrard, Can, Henderson, Lallana, Sterling, Balotelli

SUBS: Jones, Toure, Manquillo, Coutinho, Allen, Markovic, Lambert

After his recent injury, Emre Can also comes straight back into the team, but for some reason, Javier Manquillo is dropped to the bench, and Alberto Moreno doesn't even make the first-team squad.

Perhaps Rodgers is saving them for the Real Madrid game, but given their comparative lack of experience, it would arguably make more sense to play them today, and start Johnson and Enrique in the Champions League.

Philippe Coutinho is also dropped, which comes as no real surprise given his underwhelming form this season.

They key question is how will Rodgers utilise Can and Gerrard? Hopefully, he'll play LFC's captain further forward, with Can operating in the defensive midfielder role. Possible formation:

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

Johnson --- Skrtel --- Lovren ------- Enrique

----------------- Can

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

--------------- Lallana

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

Earlier this week, Balotelli complained about playing as a lone striker, so perhaps Rodgers will take that on board and play Sterling up-front alongside the Italian...?

Of course, it's also possible that Rodgers may stubbornly stick to his guns, and play Gerrard at DM, and Balotelli as a lone striker:

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

Johnson --- Skrtel --- Lovren ------- Enrique

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

--------- Hendo --------- Can

----- Sterling ----------- Lallana

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

I don't like the look of this formation, but it's probably what Rodgers will go with.

My prediction: 2-1 to Liverpool.

Author:



451 comments:

  1. Moreno and manquillo are likely being rested for Real game because they will be doing a lot of running against Ronaldo and bale, Good to see Can get a game and i hope Gerrard plays in number 10 role see links up better with balo. Lets do this reds!!!

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  2. I so hope you are right mate about Manquillo and Moreno.. Bale and Ronaldo will rip Johnson and Enrique to shreds..

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  3. Moreno must be injured or rested, he's a class above Enrique and hasn't done much wrong yet. I think we'll see Balotelli as a lone striker with Gerrard, Henderson, Sterling & Lallana supporting him. Looks good to me :)

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  4. I would rather see a front three then one up top so hopefully the formation is 4-3-3. Gerrard will most likely be holding with Hendo and Can playing ahead of him.

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  5. Manquillo being dropped is a good thing the weak link vs west ham and west brom


    only two problem, enriqure is kinda bad , why we play two holding mids vs qpr
    surly play coutinho over can or gerrard

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  6. enrique yes but
    johnson is better then manquillo


    manquillo was at fault for west brom goal and he was subsituted vs west ham so early bcos he was so schocking the last time i remember a player playing that bad was spearing vs chelsea in fa cup final


    manquillo is hopless attackingly always loses the ball with aimless crosses and the worst first touch since david ngog

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  7. ////can, gerrard
    Lallana, Hendo, Sterling
    ////////////Ballotelli
    I think, and hope, that is it..

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  8. What?? I have to disagree.. How was Manquillo at fault when Lovren conceded the penalty. You seriously have not seen a worse performance than Manquillos' against WBA. How about the endless great performances from Iago Aspas and Aly Cissokho. That is just recently. I think you have not seen Kolo Toure if you think Manquillo has a bad first touch. He has been dependable in attack and defence and is the perfect complement to the fast paced and attack style of Moreno.

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  9. QPR hope so too.


    Balotelli up on his own = we know how that has ended up every time this season.

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  10. played gerrard again and will play him against madrid and against hull city too maybe..lets just finish gerrard off and liverpool's chances of winning anything..genius pure genius

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  11. your just following the bandwagon
    manquillo lost the ball up-field vs west brom with a careless first touch this led to west brom attacking a vulnerable liverpools defense


    manquillo vs west ham was what i was talking about
    only two times rodgers has taken a player off at 30 mins without the guy being forced off due to inury the other was suso vs wigan

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  12. They are poor defensevly, so Hendo Lallana and Sterling will be in front of the goal all the time. And if Can is any good, even Steven might get few chances to work his magic in finak third.

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  13. exactly why not coutinho
    we have to attack qpr because we cant defend
    its like rodgers lost his principles and forgot what made us sucsessful last season

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  14. He got rest. He will probably get out for Lazar if we are up two..

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  15. We are poor defensively too, add to that a striker which cannot lead the line and we are in for yet another disaster.

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  16. this is how we will set up like vs spurs last year?


    .......................................................balotelli /suarez
    lallana/coutinho...................................henderson...................sterling
    ..........................................can/allen..........gerrard/lucas

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  17. Against them, with Johnson(yes him), we are not..

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  18. What bandwagon have I been following? I have advocated Manquillo's performances from the very beginning. I have been hugely impressed with him and you might not see it but he works really, really hard to defend and attack. If you think Johnson is the solution then I give up..

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  19. It is quite simple


    1. We have an inept defence.


    2. To counter that we have to score goals.


    3. To score goals Rodgers should have by now realised Balotelli cannot play up on his own.


    4. QPR will be hoping to see Balotelli up on his own :-)

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  20. johnson is not the solution but we use the best we have at the present moment rodgesr seems to agree with me
    when flanno comes back he will start above him


    i dont see how you can be impressed with manquillo but i guess thats your opinion

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  21. atleast johnson does not lose the ball every time he receives
    putting in aimless crosses or reckless first touches

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  22. in all games till now i havent seen him taking gerrard off..i highly doubt it now.he has played him in each and every game barring one where lucas started..if thats the plan than we are in trouble..gerrard as holding midfielder requires protection which is not making us an attacking threat and defensively we havent improved.

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  23. 1 not working, at the moment, have the potential to.
    2We can.
    3HE won`t be alone
    4fcuk them
    hehe

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  24. He will be good these months, me thinks. And Manquillo will improve.

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  25. this is our best team when everyone's fit:
    .......................mignolet
    johnson........skrtel........lovren..........moreno
    ............................gerrard
    ..................henderson........allen
    ..............................sterling
    .....................baloteli........sturridge


    with lallana and flanagan unlucky to miss out

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  26. Lallana is our best midfielder. But your line up is something to go to Chelsea or Real fearless. And that what dept is..

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  27. Can is protection. Things are changing regarding subs with our mid healthy.

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  28. lets hope so.

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  29. if rogers is going to play Gerrard against Madrid he should of played allen today to see how a midfield 3 of can allen and hendo performs .....but thats way to logical for rogers ...not sure what reasons there are for dropping moreno and manquillo unless its to rest them as they have been as good as anyone

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  30. blaming manquillo for them defeats is a kin to blaming Oppenheimer s mum for Hiroshima

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  31. Gerrard playing up..

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  32. We ought to be concerned about Zamora!

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  33. Did i not say QPR were hoping to see Balotelli up on his own?


    They got their wish.

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  34. They have dominated the opening.

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  35. That's just pathetic defending. F*** this club and their endless defensive errors. Why so many?

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  36. Our defence an accident waiting to happen.

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  37. Why is Brendan doing this? Our defence is so weak..

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  38. Why are we playing one upfront again?

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  39. Dude we've hardly even had enough ball to see if 3 forwards is going to work just see what happens

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  40. Wish we had an Alex Song type to control the middle. One up front against QPR says it all!

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  41. Well nothing is going to happen for us the way we are setup at the moment.


    Rodgers has lost the plot.

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  42. zamora is so sick
    what a player

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  43. cant believe QPR is dominating

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  44. we are doing well so far we need to carry this on

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  45. because rogers doesnt know his own players ...

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  46. all our hard work paying off we are defending much better

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  47. Doing well? Ha ha, what match are you watching?

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  48. lovren doing well now shows he is adapting
    balotelli much better as well

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  49. We just got robbed of a great goal scoring opportunity by a horrendous offside call

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  50. i dont see what lfc have done wrong we are containing teh ebast

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  51. it all evnes out
    at the end of the season
    spurs were robbed when allen won that penalty

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  52. yeah you are right. i was hoping we would contain them just another 65 minutes to go and we are home free.

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  53. he does rodgers is planning to contain qpr a draw here is good a tough stadium loftus road

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  54. Is it just me or are we playing like we did under Hodgson?

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  55. your right i suppose a draw at qpr is a good result

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  56. cant watch. please no more..

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  57. exactly we lfc fans demand too much we aint real much we aint chelsea or city

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  58. cant see winning this..it should be 1-0 up for QPR

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  59. yeah long balls to a target man ..wheres our fluent football we need 2 up front

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  60. God I've had enough of them. This is QPR and they're able to just open us up like that. Useless. AND STOP THESE PASSES STRAIGHT TO BALOTELLI'S HEELS

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  61. It'll be fun against real madrid...

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  62. WTF Rodgers, can you see that your experiment has gone horribly wrong? Speechless.

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  63. Sterling you have to release the ball faster

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  64. QPR are a beast?

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  65. OH PISS OFF MIGNOLET. YOU'RE USELESS.

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  66. oh my why are we so crap geee!!!!!!!!

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  67. Skrtel doesn't even jump... he just let the attacker get a free header.

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  68. They're both in the wrong

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  69. Is BR trying to get sacked ? because if it's what he's aiming for he could well succeed on this one :/

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  70. its okay though because hes not sako

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  71. Skrtel jumped into Mignolet plus he made a, how is a muck up of his clearance. Comon mate, how is a goalkeeper supposed to be comfortable with such rubbish defending?

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  72. this has to be the worst half of football that we have ever played

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  73. no there are too many...west ham , southampton etc

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  74. Anyone with pace or presence will shake up our defence!

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  75. talking about free pass i don't understand how sterling is plaing, he's been in poor form lately constantly loosing the ball.
    If coutinho had that kind of game...

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  76. No pressing, do not know what to do with the ball. Inept defence. Laughable attack etc.

    When West Ham under Sam Allardyce play more attractive football then that is when you need to start worrying.

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  77. rogers must of abandoned the short passing possession strategy ....

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  78. Rodgers is the biggest problem- refuses to change a method which works against us

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  79. Abandon 2 holding midfielders and one upfront.

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  80. guys thoughts of pushing SG back to dm taking Can off and bringing couts on? not much pace in qprs attack couts myt open them up?

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  81. We have no one who is comfortable on the ball especially in midfield who can dictate play. There is no steel & Ballotelli is isolated.

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  82. Doesn't have a strategy

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  83. if we sign jackson martinez gonzalo higuain yohan cabaye
    this january we should be okay

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  84. I can't remember nor give a shit anymore.

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  85. to think that we're lucky not to be behind at half-time against QPR show how poor we are right now...

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  86. Hahaha this tam against Madrid- Oh no

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  87. ........................................martinez..........higuain
    ......................................................sterling
    .........................................allen......................henderson
    ....................................................cabaye


    sell coutinho,balotelli

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  88. only if we play them in the right positions with the right game plan ,which on todays evidence seems highly improbable

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  89. at least we'll see a lot of goals

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  90. Not sure I even want to watch the 2nd half. Rodgers needs to come back to reality. He is in la la land at the moment.

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  91. I hate to say it, but I think it's simple... we are not very good without Danny Sturridge

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  92. it is an honor to ahve real at anfield

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  93. agreed this is so poor our performance

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  94. Nicolas Chamberlain2:19 pm, October 19, 2014

    Balotelli is again beyond woeful. That last action just before half time sums it all up for me. He is our striker not our winger or no. 10.
    He should proves his worth because this is just ridicilous.
    What an awful game, again. Hopefully we can show some passion the second half.

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  95. Even I hate to say it but " Or without Luis Suarez" it seems.

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  96. lets sign messi as well when we are at it...

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  97. we done okay the game plan is to win on the counter
    gerrard almost scored
    just need to be a bit more clinical
    balotelli kinda reminds me of a donkey i dont know why

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  98. we need to play 2 up front simple!!!!

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  99. Maybe but we will get destroyed

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  100. Still think Manquillo is the reason behind our woefulness..

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  101. I dont know how its still 0-0..... it should have been 2 for qpr

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  102. yeah but we wernt very good with suarez
    before sturridge came he revitalised us just like cantona at man utd

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  103. Is Steve Clarke still available to come back to run our defense?

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  104. They cannot even complete 2 passes let alone play a range of passes.

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  105. Do not expect anything to change if Rodgers does not change the setup. Formation needs to change. I have been saying this time and time again!!!

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  106. Could have been 4 mate..

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  107. lets get Jamie back to sort out our defence

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  108. rodgers doesnt know first thing abt defence

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  109. This is what happens with an isolated striker desperate for goal. They snatch at shots & ignore teammates. Play two upfront!

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  110. Nicolas Chamberlain2:22 pm, October 19, 2014

    Yeah, SG is our dm and playmaker but too many over critical fellow Reds were so convinced that Gerrard should play as a no. 10 because all our defeats were his fault, or something like that.

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  111. the defence done fine
    teh aim is to stop qpr scoring which they ahve done
    its teh strikers we need martinez and higuain

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  112. That was actually the worst first half I've seen us play in a long time. Absolutely disgusted

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  113. Enemyofeverydisbeliever2:22 pm, October 19, 2014

    Seriously I cant believe what Im seeing.

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  114. Rose tinted glasses. Our defence is sh!te.

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  115. no we're not doing ok... this is QPR, one of the worst team this season in the PL and they should be 2 up at half-time... jesus christ.

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  116. I just heard a great line on TV: "The best Liverpool defender today has been the crossbar"


    Usually not indicative of a "fine" defense.

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  117. Worst 45 for a long time. Can't be any worse in the second half.

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  118. we looked sure on defence
    its jsut we have not kept possesion so we been under fire all agme
    only mignolet looks awful at teh back

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  119. Does Borini have a dog?

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  120. Nicolas Chamberlain2:24 pm, October 19, 2014

    Agree. Especially when we are playing long balls we could use Lambert. I think our players can't cope with just one striker like Balotelli upfront.

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  121. Let's continue to play one upfront and we will get what we deserve.

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  122. please 80m we can sign martinez and higuain its possible


    messi would cost 360m and is too big for us

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  123. we really need to put 2 up front push SG back to dm and bring on couts

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  124. I seriously do not know what to say. We have been played off the park by QPR, the bloody bottom team in the league, could have conceded 4 or 5 and are being outmuscled and outgunned and you think we look sure on defence. All right then..

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  125. im not sure how a celebrity chef will help

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  126. We need 8 new players

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  127. yeah but it was like that vs west ham last season away


    it was SAS who won that game for us with their brilliance
    that the only difference

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  128. don't bother the guy is either clueless or a troll...

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  129. are things really that bad because if they are we are in deep

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  130. Do not be ridiculous. We need to go with what works which is the way we played last season. Rodgers and his tinkering is the problem.

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  131. well SG can deliver the passes from deep and couts can open them up I dnt see Can doing anything

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  132. look rodgers has had
    kelly,johnson,flangan,skrtel,lovren,sakho,toure,agger,moreno,enrique ,cissoko
    so many different players but it never worked
    it goes beyond the players

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  133. The game could have been over for us at half time and Glenda lucky to still be on field ...... Ballo is crap end of !

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  134. well if he keep going like that he won't be come the january transfer windows...

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  135. how are qpr in relegation position while we arent.. i dont see how we r above them

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  136. Not for long at this rate mate

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  137. look at the match... it's just pure luck

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  138. we are playing like last season how many counters did we see explosive bursts teh difference SAS
    you cant fault their genius 52 goals and all teh others they assisted wheater winning free kicks,penalties and their sheer presence

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  139. Balotelli is worse than useless. This is really poor

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  140. How about new manager then?

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  141. im beginning to agree regrettably although he needs a partner....its made me realize how much the on fire partnership of suarez and danny propped us up i dare say if they had played for qpr they would be a top team last year

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  142. Liverpool still to win, 2-0 or 2-1

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  143. I am not going to waste my time arguing.


    If we were playing like we did last season the QPR would not be all over us.

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  144. the guy's telling us how to get the best out of him but we're not listening... what do you expect ?

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  145. i never said that : )

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  146. everyon at anfiel were all over us
    but we won 4-0 cause of SAS

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  147. if we do it's the biggest hold-up in the history of the PL

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  148. Yea after Andy dumped me not much else to do

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  149. His position on the pitch has nothing to do with those 3 times he was in a good position and put three awful shots no where near the goal.

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  150. a whole host of average teams have played us off the park this year and then gone on to be thrashed by a decent team it cant be a coincidence

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  151. Kev well said mate! BR is beyond stubborn

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  152. hes trying to hard to score adam thats what happens when a striker feels under pressue

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  153. he plays like rubbish?

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  154. qprs corners are awful dont they know just put it in head height they should score

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  155. at least we can't blame him of not being in sync with the team...

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  156. in general yes ..the confidence goes they snatch at shots they make poor decisions and its compounded because hes not a lone striker who can lead the line hes a number 10

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  157. just let crosses come in corners are more dangerous

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  158. if qpr had any quality they would be 3 nil up

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  159. We play like we're hanging on to PL status

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  160. why not paly lambert rather then balotelli who is not in form

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  161. I expect him to make one correct decision when he's on the pitch and he hasnt done that yet. His decisions to constantly go alone are alienating him from everyone else. He's been truly dreadful so far

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  162. Skrtel daydreaming again. Unable to grasp the meaning of a high defensive line and never will.

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  163. balotelli has no movement kinda painful watching him lambert would be better or markovic up front
    but rodgers doesnt havewhat chelsea players have "big balls"

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  164. you can throw that accusation at 90% of the Liverpool squad

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  165. and lamberts a real live wire

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  166. Gerrard holding. Two midfielders pushing forward and QPR are not dominating anymore.


    Well done Brendan. you have seen the light..

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  167. maybe we are in form maybe this is the best we got

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  168. allen should come on for can
    markovic for balotelli

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  169. allen or couts on for Can?

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  170. he's playing as a lone striker so being alone is pretty much the role we're giving him, i don't say he had a good start at liverpool but you can't blame the players for being played out of position.
    he hasn't exactly been given some great ball either.

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  171. allen is teh chosen one

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  172. Oh my god balotelli

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  173. ...ARE YOU JOKING MARIO

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  174. omog im just going to laugh

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  175. No excuse for Ballotelli

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  176. THAT'S TWO SITTERS HE'S MISSED IN 2 GAMES.

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  177. See what a difference it makes when Balotelli has some support? He missed but you have to play to his strengths.

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  178. agree, at least we're starting to look like a real team

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  179. why not play markovic up front

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  180. But people will keep on saying it's because he's alone up front.

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  181. if i was liverpool manager we would be in the top 3

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  182. of the vauxhall conferance

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  183. who are you managing right now ?

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  184. madness lallana been our best player

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  185. Have you seen how sh!te our entire team has been of late? Maybe if Balotelli had some support upfront then maybe he would have built up some confidence.

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  186. is there some unwritten rule that steven gerrard can never be dropped or replced

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