28 Nov 2014

LFC XI vs. Stoke: £20m star dropped again? BR to make surprise €12m change?

With only one win in the last eight games, Liverpool are in the eye of the storm right now, and after three consecutive defeats in the league, victory over Stoke City tomorrow is absolutely essential. Can the Reds arrest this awful slump?

In his pre-match press conference today, Brendan Rodgers confirmed that Mario Balotelli will miss the game, but with Rickie Lambert finally scoring goals, it's doubtful he would've started anyway.

Kolo Toure and Lucas game into the side for the midweek draw with Ludogorets, but did they do enough to keep their places?

Probably not. The team still conceded two goals, and I can't see Rodgers dropping resting Dejan Lovren for two games in a row.

Alberto Moreno has been on the bench for last two games, but after Glen Johnson's latest costly mistake against Ludo, it's surely time for Rodgers to bench him?

Moreno and Manquillo are more than capable of replacing Johnson; they are the future, he is not, so why not just play them in most games to get them up to speed?

The same applies to Mignolet - Brad Jones should come in and replace the error-prone 'keeper against Stoke. Jones is not a world-beater by any means, but is he any worse than Mignolet? Arguably no.

Jamie Carragher is in favour of dropping €12m-rated Mignolet. Last night, he told the Daily Express:

"It's another mistake for him [Mignolet] - Lovren was taken out of the team. Mignolet probably needs the same at the moment. For his own good".

I doubt any of these changes will take place, though, and I fully expect to see the following line-up from Rodgers:

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

Johnson ----- Lovren - Skrtel ------ Moreno

-------------- Allen - Gerrard

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

---------------- Lambert

Predicting a 2-0 win for Liverpool, Reds legend Mark Lawrenson urged Rodgers to 'decide on his best team and stick with it', adding:

"Stoke are having a strange old season, and seem to be better on the road than they are at home which is a reversal of their usual form. Even so, I just have a feeling that Liverpool might scrape a win".

What is Liverpool's best team? Using the players currently available, I'd go for:

------------------- Jones

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

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

---------- Hendo --------- Lallana

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

----------- Sterling -- Lambert

The 442 diamond with Lucas/Henderson axis worked a treat in LFC's 5-0 demolition of Spurs last season, so I'd give it a shot against Stoke. Gerrard's influence on Liverpool is seriously on the wane, and I doubt he'd be missed that much.

My prediction: 1-1

Author:



29 comments:

  1. I think Sterling needs to go back out wilde like last season. There is too much pressure and responsibility for him. And why not try and get Ilori back and give him a shot. Time for the likes of him, Rossiter and Jones to be geven a fair crack of the whip. I'd go for Jones; Manquillo Moreno Lovren Skrtel; Gerrard Rossiter Henderson; Lallana Lambert Sterling

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  2. Johnson, Mignolet, Lovren and Gerrard should all be dropped. Simple

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  3. From a helicopter.

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  4. He won't use the diamond, which is a shame. I think the lineup will be a 4-3-3, more like this:
    ...............................Mignolet
    Manquillo........Skrtel.........Lovren.......Moreno
    ................................Lucas
    ...............Hendo.....................Allen
    ..Sterling........................................Lallana
    ..............................Lambert

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  5. Nevergonnacrackthecode8:50 pm, November 28, 2014

    lallana,markovic,can,lovren,moreno,manquillo
    get them all in your starting 11

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  6. We need to match their physicality in the middle so no to Allen!

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  7. Liverpool fc are actually employing a goalkeeping coach ????.

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  8. I think what an easy life Joe Allen must have, no pressure on him to score or create goals , Henderson Lallana and Coutinho get singled out for that. Just make sure you go back a long way with the manager, run around a lot, always with your head down and life is indeed very sweet.

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  9. That means Can has to start

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  10. There could not be a worse time to start Rossiter. Never a good idea bringing in a really young player, in his position, with virtually an entire team low on confidence and out of form. He could be a really good player for us but he's 17. Not many 17 year old playing CM these days in the PL. Surely Can would be a better bet at the moment.

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  11. I'm so excited Rodgers is thinking of playing Lucas - masterstroke just what we need more goals in the team .

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  12. Is Sakho fit? If so, I think we should prolong Lovren's return - or Skrtel's.

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  13. People love to say GJ was at fault for the goal in midweek yet praise Moreno at the same time. IT WAS MORENO'S MAN who got the flick on. Had Moreno defended his man the flick would not have evaded GJ head. I'm not GJ biggest fan but if you fail to report the truth, whilst reporting BR has his favourites then I guess your both just as bad as each other. Moreno has been directly involved in apprx 5 conceded goals this season, yet is considered as doing ok. Yous need your heads checked.

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  14. --- Jones

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

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

    ---------- Hendo --------- Lallana

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

    ----------- Sterling -- Lambert

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  15. Liverpool .. Have to buy a new Striker .. Like Icardi he is a great player and they have to sell ..Makovic and Balotelli

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  16. Why are you so obsessed with transfer fees? "£20m this", "€12m that", does a players transfer fee have any bearing on whether or not they should be picked. And if you believe the back four is any better protected by having Lucas in front of them, you are dreaming.

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  17. Thats why he is not playing regularly.

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  18. Gerrard has had first man duty for years. Watch again, as he was the one who was beaten to the near post flick on. The rest is all reactions and Johnson was beaten to the follow up, Allen was out of position on the post and Mignolet was in no mans land.

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  19. Last season Rodgers almost always picked our most attacking line up and I'd love to see JK's team on the pitch. Rodgers has been way too conservative this season and is scared to pick a team that will win without Gerrard and co.


    Let's dump Gerrard, Johnson and probably Lovren, and get our most skilled attackers on the pitch, Lallana, Coutinho, Sterling all on the pitch at the same time with Lucas and Hendo to add balance.

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  20. ------------------- (anyone except Mignolet)

    Manquillo ---- Toure - Skrtel ----- Moreno

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

    ---------- Hendo --------- Lallana

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

    ----------- Sterling -- Borini

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  21. Rodgers needs to address corners, quickly. I give up on Mignolet. B Jones should get a chance.

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  22. Lucas should be nowhere near the DM role, the player walked past him like he was not even there during the build up for the first goal

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  23. Mignolet (4-1-2-3)

    Manquillo skrtel toure Moreno

    Lucas
    Henderson Can

    Sterling Lambert Lallana

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  24. Obviously we need a better keeper but Brad Jones is no better than Mignolet behind Skrtel, Lovren and Johnson. Skrtel, Lovren and Johnson are the ones who need to be dropped along with Gerrard but Rodgers will start with them and we will most likely get another hiding.


    When we thumped Spurs at White Hart Lane last season it was because of Henderson and Allen pressing like there was no tomorrow and Sterling along with Suarez ran Spurs ragged. The pressing system has been abandoned and this season it is about possession and slow build up play. How is Lucas going to make a difference in a possesion based system? Ludogorets was evidence of this. Stoke know exactly what to do and that is make a mockery of our defence. Lucas was run over vs Ludogorets and our defence was still 'expeosed' plus we had the usual suspects in Skrtel and Johnson so Lucas will not make any difference in this match. Stoke is a completely different proposition compared to Ludogorets. I say play Can as our midfield anchor.


    Sakho returned to training during the week so if fit I would go with the team i have been picking for a while now


    Mignolet
    Manquillo Toure Sakho Moreno
    Coutinho Can Henderson
    Sterling
    Borini Lambert


    If Sakho is not fit then I would play Lovren and I might even play Markovic ahead of Lambert.

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  25. The only thing I am thinking is Stoke's set pieces......we might loose 0-7 based on our set piece defending

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  26. Jones has been well rested evident by his little snooze the other day but its about time Mignolet was dropped a statement needs to be made.

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  27. Can would be handy to add physicality Stoke are a very physical side.

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  28. we can tinker with our lineup all we like but the fact remains we can't defend and will concede more than we can score

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