1 Oct 2014

Basel 1-0 LFC: Euro fail as BR blows it again. Liverpool in crisis, or temporary blip?

With three defeats in the first six games, Liverpool's Premier League form is poor at the moment, but on the plus side, the Reds have a 100% record in Champions League, so it's not all doom and gloom ;-) Okay, it's only one game, but it's a positive, so I'll take it. The first team remains weakened by injury for tonight's game with Basel, but the Reds should have enough quality in the squad to get a positive result, and a good win will be a massive boost ahead of this weekend's league game against West Brom.


Sturridge, Allen, Flanagan, Sakho, and Johnson are all set to miss the game through injury, but after recent injury scares, Hendo and Coutinho should be fit to feature.

As such, the team basically picks itself, and I wouldn't be surprised to see Brendan Rodgers go with the same team that beat Ludogorets, bar Sakho, who is injured.

That said, given the fact it's an away game, it's possible Rodgers may go slightly more cautious and start with Lucas ahead of Coutinho. Against Ludogorets, Lucas replaced his compatriot in the second half, so it's a definitely possibility.

I'd prefer to see a more progressive approach, but given the club's ongoing defensive issues, it won't come as a surprise to see craft sacrificed for steel. As such, the following line-up is a possibility:

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

Manquillo --- Skrtel -- Lovren ---- Moreno

----------------- Lucas

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

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

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

If Lucas plays, then he should (IMO) be the deepest-lying midfielder. Lucas should never play ahead of Gerrard as he doesn't have the attacking threat required, but that doesn't seem to make any difference to the manager. Rodgers has also employed 4231 recently, so there's a possibility that he may try that formation in Europe:

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

Manquillo --- Skrtel -- Lovren ---- Moreno

-------------- Lucas -- Gerrard

----- Hendo ----- Sterling ------ Lallana

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

On paper, it looks tasty (bar the Lucas/Gerrard partnership), but in practice, it isn't really working. I'd like to see either Coutinho or Markovic start the game, but I have a feeling that one or both may end up on the bench.

With seven wins in their first ten league games, Basel are on a roll at the moment, and manager Paulo Sousa is determined to make it a night to remember for the Swiss club. He told reporters this week:

"We could create a story tomorrow which will be remembered in the future. As a coach all the games are a real test. It is a fantastic moment for us, myself and the players and our club to enjoy but also to compete as we are looking to get results."

This is going to be a tough game, but being away from home could suit Liverpool as there be more space to exploit during the game.

My prediction: 2-2

Author:



49 comments:

  1. Completely agree about Lucas only being able to play as the midfield anchor. This should be the best option to stop Stevie getting shackled by being man- marked and give him free reign to do what he does best- pick out incisive passes. I still think he can do a job behind the strikers where he will get the ball higher up the pitch. With sterling and Lallana flanking him, I think this could be an option

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  2. Play two strikers. Lambert, Borini, Suso, anyone just to link up with balotelli and get him his wings. (Gerrard as cf?)

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  3. Gerrard will not play further up he pitch let alone with Lucas as the deepest midfielder. Just like Lucas he does not have the legs to track back so our midfield will crumble. I am quite confident that Rodgers will not start with Gerrard and Lucas. He surely has learnt his lesson. It has to be one or the other.


    Rodgers will most likely start with the same team vs Everton and with 4-2-3-1. We ain't going to score many goals with this formation. Balotelli is also struggling upfront on his own. If Basel take the game to us from the start like most teams have done this season and we sit back and try soak up the pressure then we are in for a hiding.

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  4. No matter what formation or players....Plz DONT SIT BACK..we jsust cannt absorb the opposition attacks and end up conceding

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  5. That should be an option, but unfortenatelly it isn`t..

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  6. One word if we play that team- Suicide

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  7. Defence is most probably right one, and it is the best one. As Brendan will not push Steven up the pitch we should line up him in that anchore rolewith Hendo and Lallana, plus Sterling, Balotelli and one half time for each Suso and Markovic, Though maybe it is time to start Lambert and get Suso or Markovic from the bench.

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  8. Mignolet
    Manquillo-Lovren-Skrtel-Moreno
    Gerrard
    Hendo-Lallana
    Coutinho
    Sterling-Balotelli


    Suso and Markovic to come off the bench. Do It Brendan.

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  9. Wasn`t counting on Couts being fit, but if he is I just don`t see a better solution with what we have than yours.

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  10. He is fit I think because he came on in the Derby.If he is not then just put Suso in for him. Just no Lucas and Gerrard together.

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  11. I saw the match, and I thought that he looked himself again, do not know how I thought he was out.. That jagilka strike really hit me hard...
    They play 352, with one of the two strikers actually being a bit behind so I think we could hurt them on the flanks and Sterling Moreno looks lethal

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  12. Couts and Markovic. with Lallana out. Enrique for Moreno.

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  13. Is this confirmed? I cannot see it anywhere..

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  14. Mignolet, Manquillo, Enrique, Lovren, Skrtel, Gerrard, Henderson, Coutinho, Sterling, Markovic, Balotelli.

    Substitutes: Jones, Toure, Moreno, Lucas, Lallana, Lambert, Borini.

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  15. I will be very surprised if we go with this formation. We are most likely to go 4-2-3-1 and defend a one goal lead if we do score.


    I just want a performance like that of Spurs where we were just relentless when we broke forward. We unfortunately are not great at defending so the only way we will win games right now is by scoring goals.


    Let's see what the plan is for tonight.

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  16. Why Brendan Why??? Why?? When will we have a settled defence..

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  17. Too many games for Moreno and Enrique is suposed to be quality sub.

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  18. Looking at the starting eleven surely we will line up like this


    ----------------Mignolet---------------
    Manquillo-Skrtel-Lovren-Enrique
    ----------------Gerrard----------------
    -----Coutinho---------Hendo-------
    Markovic--- Balotelli-----Sterling

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  19. I`d flank Raheem and check what is Markovic made of. And than Suso in if he uderperforms again.

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  20. lallana looked like one of out better performers against everton so rogers is doing the right thing benching him

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  21. Yup, all we need is another injury and Coutinho needs some confidence.

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  22. He must be tired after that match, plus he will be useful sub no matter what is the score.

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  23. i think rodgers is going for 4 2 3 1 again, hendo and gerrrard as holding midfielders ... hopefully im wrong

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  24. glad to see lazers form is keeping him in the team .....hes really earning that shirt

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  25. leaving suso out of the squad but playing markovic doesn't make any sense if you ask me ...

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  26. I too have already suggested that and said that we are unlikely to score many goals if we go 4-2-3-1.

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  27. when has sense ever been valued

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  28. But we need a settled defence not one chopped and changed. Also, would you like to see Enrique lumbering or Moreno sprinting down the flanks.

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  29. I am just happy that Rodgers has seen that Lucas and Gerrard in the same team is a disaster waiting to happen. Now all we need is for intensity and a pressing to be injected back into our performance.

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  30. Either sprinting, and I think it is possible..

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  31. Nevergonnacrackthecode6:55 pm, October 01, 2014

    i know i picked on him a lot against middlesbrough i cant stand him worst footballers




    but alot of us picked on sterling after he played so poorly vs hull the performance was so bad some were calling for his career rodgesr never lsitened
    at the kc then put in another bad performance vs nowrich then an average performance vs west ham
    sterling not looked back since

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  32. it clearly doesn't work...
    we played so fluently last season with 4-3-3 and diamond - why change a winning tactic?

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  33. I am puzzled by it too. Experiment gone wrong.

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  34. Surprised to see Moreno on the bench,?.

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  35. looking at lazer he should be coming off the bench after 70mins for several games ,my main concern is he cant keep hold of the ball early doors in a match and so are defense is under immediate pressue

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  36. jose is more than capable

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  37. With Rodgers this season, expecting the unexpected has become the expected. Next thing you know, Aspas will be playing up top.

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  38. I imagine he is there for his speed on breakaways.

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  39. Nevergonnacrackthecode7:01 pm, October 01, 2014

    rodgers you are running out of chances
    if you lose this one that's it you get lost forever
    no pressure!

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  40. Yeah, don't exaggerate or anything.

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  41. Nevergonnacrackthecode7:07 pm, October 01, 2014

    just saying cant understand why lallana and moreno are dropped
    this is like the time Rodgers thought he was all g man
    and dropped sterling vs villa


    plus the way he has handled sakho is disgraceful how dare he drop him for lolo toure


    also cant understand why we never start lambert who has so far done better then balotelli

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  42. Nevergonnacrackthecode7:09 pm, October 01, 2014

    like i said i think he is horrible has aspas mark two all over him
    but he could prove me wrong i remember i was crying one day when daglish played henderson vs wigan at anfield i think sterlings debut
    now hes my favorite player

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  43. nevergonna are you on crack ....lambert done better than balo ...do you have any facts to back that wild accusation up

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  44. Ludogorets were robbed against us, we were not good enough to win that game, but for their mad goalie, this team are better than Ludogorets I expect, they beat Chelsea Home and Away in this competition last season, how many teams have achieved that.
    A draw would be a great result for us.

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  45. Ludogorets 1 - 0 Real M.

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  46. Enrique looks awful.

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  47. Doesn't matter who we play we will lose we really are that bad

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