20 Dec 2014

LFC line-up vs. Arsenal: Huge game-changing boost for LFC; BR to start £46m duo?

Liverpool face Arsenal at Anfield tomorrow, and once again, it's another must-win game for the Reds, who are quickly falling out of contention for a Champions League place.

After today's Premier League results, Liverpool are:

* 10 points off West Ham in 4th place

* 11 points behind Manchester United in 3rd.

* 6 points off the relegation zone.

* In danger of falling to 12th if Stoke win and LFC lose.

The midweek win against lower-league opposition is a welcome boost, but in the grand scheme of things, it means absolutely nothing.

Liverpool *should* be beating Championship teams, and in my view, the players don't deserve any extra credit for basically doing their jobs (for once)

The league is what matters, and a meaningless win against lower-league opposition is hardly going to compensate for yet another defeat in the league.

Against Bournemouth, Rodgers started the game without a striker, and left both full-backs on the bench; will he take the same approach against Arsenal?

It's possible, but after demolishing Arsenal 5-1 last season in the corresponding fixture, perhaps it's a better idea to go with what works, and in the game, Rodgers deployed a 433, with Coutinho playing deeper, and Sturridge flanked by Sterling and Suarez.

Obviously, SAS are not available now, but the same formation is possible:

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

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

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

---- Gerrard ------------- Henderson

--------- Markovic ---- Lallana

---------------- Sterling

* Coutinho is out of form at the moment, so it wouldn't surprise me to see Lallana replace him in the starting line-up. That said, if he still has broken ribs, then why play him and risk exacerbating the injury?

* Sakho is fit again, but in a back-four, there's no reason to interfere with a Toure/Skrtel partnership.

* If Rodgers opts for a back three, the Sakho will probably come in to replace Lovren, who picked up an injury midweek:

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

------- Skrtel -- Toure ---- Sakho

Gerrard ---- Lucas -- Hendo -- Lallana

--------- Markovic ---- Coutinho

---------------- Sterling

On the positive side, Arsenal will be without Aaron Ramsey, Mikel Arteta, Tomas Rosicky, Laurent Koscielny, Jack Wilshere, and Mesut Ozil, which is a massive, potentiall match-winning boost for Liverpool.

Predicting a 1-1 draw, Anfield legend Mark Lawrenson warned that the Reds 'cannot afford to lose', adding:

"I see this being much tighter, especially because these two sides are big rivals for the top four. If Arsenal win, they move eight points clear of Liverpool, which would be a big statement, while a Reds win would reduce the gap to just two points"

Lawro's former team-mater, Jan Molby took a much more optimistic view. In his column for the Liverpool Echo this week, he enthused:

"Liverpool have Anfield on their side, and played well at Bournemouth in midweek, so there are things they can build on. I’m not for one second expecting us to be 4-0 up after 19 minutes, like last season, but I do fancy us, I really do"

My prediction: 2-2

Author:



18 comments:

  1. My starting XI-
    Mignolet
    Skrtel-Toure-Sakho
    Henderson-Lucas-Markovic
    Gerrard-Can
    Balotelli- Sterling

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  2. This is the line up :
    ..........................................Sterling
    .................................Lallana......................Coutinho
    Markovic......................Lucas................Gerrard...................Henderson
    ..................................Sakho...........Skrtel................Toure
    .................................................Jones


    unless injuries i am 100% sure

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  3. I think you may be right but 3 at the back vs Arsenal is going to see us either be very fortunate or get a proper hiding.

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  4. Exactly! Last season Arsenal punished us when we played a back-3 in the first meeting. But due to their injury list, I hope we can overcome a rampant Arsenal midfield display... I'm praying for the 3 points.

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  5. Depends on how we do it
    If Lucas goes into defense in between Skrtel and Sakho it will be like a back 4
    Sakho has played lb before

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  6. If that formation becomes our standard this is the team i want to see soon


    ................................................Sterling
    .........................................Coutinho............Lallana/Balotelli
    .....Moreno..........................Gerrard.........Can..........Markovic/Henderson
    ......................................Sakho............Skrtel/Lovren.....Toure/Johnson
    .........................................................Mignolet


    looks very promising

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  7. I fully expect him to stick with the 3 at the back for this game. It's a horrible thing to say, but injuries to Johnson and Lovren might just save our season. I haven't lost hope for Lovren but his head's gone and an enforced period out the team and some sessions with Steve Peters might do him the world of good.
    I lost hope for Johnson a couple of years ago

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  8. Can looked disappointingly disinterested and lifeless on Wednesday. Trotted around when he should have been charging about

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  9. And injured.

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  10. I thought his one match banned was over with the Bournemouth match

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  11. It will happen for sure if your manager drops you after scoring a goal against leaders and giving an impressing display just because some old guy has to play there to be a passanger and so called leadership

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  12. This should be the lineup

    ...................migno.................
    Manqui Toure sakho moreno
    ...................lucas...................
    henderson...........can............
    .................coutinho...............
    ........markovic......sterling.....

    diamond is always effective

    mertersacker against two pacey people..he ll go home at halftime.

    if people run behind defenders i trust coutinho to be the man for those throughballs

    No gerrard please..total passenger in team

    Allen should not be near the stadium..bad luck

    trust me jones is worst

    last but not least this wont happen :)

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  13. Wish for better but expect arsenal 3 reds 2 sadly.............last years game was the best and had my family and I jumping out of our seats.........those were the days.........

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  14. Balo is also a piece of sh@t.......

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  15. Four in the back or we are cooked....

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  16. Yes....noticed that to sadly.Shame.

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  17. If anyone follows LFC on facebook, they cheerfully shared the defensive line up a few days ago. Jones, Toure, Skrtel and Sakho look to be getting the nod.

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