16 Mar 2015

Confirmed lineup vs. Swansea: £40m duo dumped; surprise on bench; disappointment for Lovren

After the bore-draw with Blackburn, Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers has made three changes for tonight's Premier League clash with Swansea City, which the Reds must win to stay within touching distance of top four.

FULL TEAM: Mignolet, Can, Skrtel, Sakho, Allen, Henderson, Lallana, Moreno, Coutinho, Sterling, Sturridge.

SUBS: Jones, Johnson, Toure, Lovren, Gerrard, Lambert, Markovic.

SWANSEA: Fabianski, Naughton, Amat, Williams, Taylor, Ki, Cork, Shelvey, Sigurdsson, Routledge, Gomis.

* Sakho comes back into the team at the expense of Lovren. It's harsh on the Croatian as he's helped the club keep 3 clean sheets in 5 games, but Can-Skrtel-Sakho is arguably the club's most solid defensive unit. Still, Lovren will probably feel disappointed to miss out.

* Allen deservedly keeps him place despite the return of Steven Gerrard, who is only granted a place on the bench. After the captain's recent injury, bringing him back slowly is the right move, as no one wants him to get injured again and miss the final stages of his illustrious Liverpool career.

* It looks like it'll be one of Sterling or Lallana at right wing-back again. It's not an ideal solution, but the alternative is Markovic, who is hardly pulling up trees this season. * Jones is back in the squad after his injury lay-off, but his chance has probably gone as Mignolet has stepped-up his game big-time over the last two months.

* Lallana had a poor game against Blackburn, so he's lucky to keep his place, but to be honest, there isn't a viable alternative right now. If Ibe was fit, though, I'm sure Lallana would be joining Gerrard and co on the bench. Probable formation:

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

----- Can ------ Skrtel ------ Sakho

-- Sterling -- Hendo - Allen --- Moreno

----------- Lallana ---- Coutinho

---------------- Sturridge

My prediction: 1-1

Author:



157 comments:

  1. We were 2 points off 4th place on sunday, could be 8 in the space of a week. Must win.
    2-1 to Liverpool.

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  2. Really, Jaimie, some bad feeling or you have some rational explenation?

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  3. BEFORE anyone complains about Mario not making the squad, he's ill so he didn't make the trip.

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  4. All right, but why then is no Ibe?!?

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  5. Are you sure he's not at the barber?

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  6. Off topic... It seems like there are a ton more ads on this site.


    Can someone tell me if it's just me or if it's happening to everyone?


    Just trying to figure out if there's something wrong with my computer

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  7. where's ibe? Rodgers out!

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  8. I like Jonjo Shelvey. Would've been cool if he'd stayed.

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  9. lallana playing wing back? well this is going to be interesting

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  10. bloody apologist

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  11. Henderson apparently disagrees.

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  12. Yikes. That was, er, enthusiastic.

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  13. He's playing on the edge.

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  14. Brendan on the indi tabs ..... squeaky bum time !

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  15. Really got to get control of the game

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  16. Nice work by Lallana.

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  17. Got to inject some pace we aren't countering

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  18. Haha shambles! I'd say "get it together, lads" but this is entertaining.

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  19. Nor are we stringing four passes together. Got to slow the game down first to get some control.

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  20. 'Entertaining ' ? Bloody frustrating ....

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  21. We slow it down we lose the ball ...

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  22. Yup - but my new motto is 'laugh it off'. :-) Might as well enjoy what we've got

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  23. I predict that attitude isn't going to survive long into the second half if the scores are still close :)

    I'm not that bothered by this so far either. Swansea look well-coached but Liverpool have so much quality in the attack, I don't think Swansea can keep them out.

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  24. Yeah; this is the time we're happy with 0-0 at half-time. Or when Coutinho swings the momentum with a Zeus-like thunderbolt that has angels singing and Garry Monk praying for a different kind of divine intervention.

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  25. Me neither. I sense that five good minutes will get our tails up, and that should be that.


    Touch wood.

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  26. Never thought much of Gomis but he's playing very well.

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  27. How we doing lads? On my way to play footy so can't watch...

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  28. Hope you do better than we are at mo

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  29. At the minute you don't wanna know but somehow 0-0

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  30. Dear God take off Sturridge. And being his biggest critic I have to admit Mignolet looks like a championship winning goalkeeper tonight. Very strong. Allen too.

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  31. playing really bad, swansea are bossing us all over the pitch.
    Skrtel and Allen the best of our players so far. our passing is extremely poor

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  32. I'm due a hattrick :0P

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  33. Oh no! One of these nights

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  34. Wtf are we doing out there...

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  35. yeah, we could do well with gerrard right now

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  36. Man oh man what a save.

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  37. What have they been doing this last week ? Not passing practice that's for sure Bloody hell we could be 2 down by now errr make that 3 !

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  38. another world class safe from mignolet. well done!! hope can keep the 0:0 until half time. some strong words are needed from BR and the skipper

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  39. A few asses need to be kicked that's for sure Thank God for Migno

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  40. Might as well unleash Lambert and Gerrard. They'll drift in and out of the game but at least they can force shots on goal.

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  41. i miss sturridge's sharpness. he's non-present today

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  42. I would like to see Gerrard come on at half-time

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  43. My feeling is that Swansea have found a way to play against the 3-4-3. The way Gomis is moving from pressure on Can to movement in behind Skrtel looks like part of a plan. It's hard to see on TV but Swansea are finding a way to get overloads and free runners which doesn't leave them short in midfield. This could get really open, because to counter it I think Liverpool need Can and Sterling to play much further forward...

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  44. gomis has such a weird playing style

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  45. Shockingly bad performance so far. Will the real Daniel Sturridge please stand up as this lookalike we have playing at the moment is hopeless

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  46. At this moment, we need Shelvey to come to our rescue

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  47. Good thinking. Their whole team looks good but Monk seems to have got Gomis syncing with their midfield particularly well. Think we might have to resort to a counter-attack, which means `Stevie G could play a part. This possession thing hasn't worked out this half.

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  48. So much for the week's rest .....

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  49. Thank feck for half time

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  50. 0-0 at half-time, we are very lucky.

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  51. Possession ... What Possession ? Where is the counter attack we are supposed to be so good at FFS ?

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  52. Patience, Padawan... There's still time to burgle an undeserved three points in the dying minutes of the match. And Shelvey, bless him, might do us a favour.

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  53. He looks lost. Heavy touches, pointless shots. Hope we turn the tables in the 2nd

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  54. I think they are still resting the lazy sods.

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  55. This has been exactly like the Southampton game apart from the Coutinho wonder goal. I do not know if Rodgers is doing this on purpose or not, but we will see in the second half. But, Emre has had his worst game in a Liverpool shirt.

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  56. Let's hope Gomis feints in the dressing room and doesn't come out SH

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  57. HT
    Mignolet-Fantastic 9/10
    Can-Awful defending, caught out by pace twice. 4-10
    Skrtel- Hardly put a foot wrong apart from hesitation 6/10
    Sakho-Solid-Responding to jeers well.
    Moreno-Bad defensively, ineffective going forward 4/10
    Sterling-Has the beating of the full back- Better delivery needed, was hopeless in the centre-5/10
    Allen-Apart from Migno probably our best player. Says it all 7/10
    Henderson-Ineffective-Sloppy and quiet. 4/10
    Coutinho-Quiet, sloppy and lethargic 3/10
    Lallana-Slow, uncreative and ineffective. 4/10
    Sturridge-Hopeless. Selfish and awful shooting along with inability to pass. 4/10
    Incredibly poor half. The problem with high pressure is that if a team can pass through it. You're exposed. Thats been the case.

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  58. Somebody sneak up behind him and go BOO

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  59. Always do better SH lads ......

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  60. That's actually spot on.

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  61. We are not even controlling possession, Swansea have had 58% of the possession

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  62. Worst half of football from us this year! Studge coming too deep gives us no threat on their back four and they're looking comfortable. Subutteo passing ... what's going on? Lallana off, Gerrard on for me. Still optimistic though for the second half.

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  63. Those half-time stats were surprisingly similar. Just shows that stats can sometimes be barely half the story.

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  64. I'd take Hendo off because of that card.

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  65. Too many poor performers/passengers in the first half. We are not up to pace of the game, they seem to want it more. Sturridge still not looking lethal as he was last year, Sterling starting position is too far out, not going to the by line to cross, Lallana not doing enough, Coutinho no show, Henderson passing poor and on a yellow. Bad feeling about this, but hope I'm wrong. Mignolet might have one of those games he used to have for Sunderland.

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  66. Brendan's getting a Bung to him right now ...

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  67. I would swap Johnson in for Lallana, go four at the back and 5 in midfield, move Can central and get him, Henderson and Allen narrow, with Sterling wide right and Coutinho wide left.

    And I'd be very bloody grateful to get out with a point.

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  68. Bring him on in place of Studge !

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  69. Lookin at the bench - yikes

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  70. I love Alberto Moreno, the boy has no fear

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  71. I know things arent going well but a point just wont do.

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  72. Sterling is on 5 yellows now. Does that mean he misses the next match?

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  73. Agreed. We've been outnumbered since minute one.

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  74. Ref goes to same barber as Shelvey

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  75. moreno has to improve on his final ball

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  76. Hendoooooooooooooooooooooooo

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  77. Gooood management that.

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  78. Hendo the striker !

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  79. Me too. And Mr. I want 130k a week should be so lucky to get what Coutinho is on because lil Phil is three times the player Sterling is.

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  80. if we get a CL spot this year, we have a good chance in signing Lacazette. I'm pretty sure he would be happy to get 100k a week at liverpool.

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  81. Hendo looks our sharpest forward ;-)

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  82. C mon lads see it out

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  83. Our best player, week in, week out.

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  84. Captain material now ?

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  85. He works hard and he tries and that's all he can do until he has his sharpness back. Its just frustrating to see knowing what he can do. For tonight I'd take him off now and let Sterling finish up front.

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  86. Hendo deserves to be the captain of liverpool

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  87. No question, for me.

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  88. I hope you're right but simehow I can see him ending up at Real Madrid

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  89. Leads by example that's for sure

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  90. that's where I can see Sterling soon ...

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  91. So glad he didn't

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  92. Just keep the ball n run the clock down

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  93. Joe Allen MOTM for sure!

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  94. Mignolet for me

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  95. Sved the first half for us and kept us in it

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  96. Wtf Emnes and Gommis are some kinda twins?!:-)

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  97. I'd pay good money just to watch Sakho doing dribbling practice.

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  98. Fantastic, totally undeserved victory.

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  99. 3 points and another CLEAN SHEET Well done the lads

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  100. WE bossed the SH tho

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  101. Each team had it's half, we scored they didn't. Deserved win.

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  102. Gonna keep posting these negative half time posts in an attempt to be proved wrong time and time again :)

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  103. Now I know what it feels like to be a Man Utd fan

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  104. Another draw predicted, another win. Onwards.

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  105. Only really the last 25 minutes after the boss changed the system. So many mistakes as well, even during our good spells... Anyway, roll on Sunday!

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  106. They are next .... Bring it on
    Results are all that matter at this stage !

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  107. But at least he has the ability to do that ....
    In Brendan we trust !

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  108. 13 bloody games in prem now without defeat ....

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  109. Hey has anyone noticed we're only 4 points off 2nd place? Crazy...

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  110. The fact that Hendo of all people is our best going forward today says a lot about poor quality squad that BR has assembled. Probably only one or two players in this team could get a look in on any of the teams above us in the table.

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  111. Only 10 pts off 1st. Not that anyone's looking that high, but 3 losses = 9 pts, with 10 games to go. We might not get there, but City might.

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  112. Very lucky to take all 3 points tonight but hey, they all count

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  113. Yes that's the problem we're not in the Championship we're in the Premiership ;-)

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  114. Brendan Rodgers - "We haven't done anything yet". He might be overpraising the players a lot in the press but they're still grounded and the team knows nothing is done yet too. Great result, bring on United!!

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  115. Well done lads in grinding out that victory and now we're gone like the wind! Special shout out goes to out to the welsh Xa.... Joe Allen who played well and was positive in his approach. Side praise goes to Sakho for staying focused with all the winding up that he had to endure.

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  116. TheRed has a point. Mignolet kept us in the game so it is hard to look past him but next best top performer would be Allen with Skrtel and Sakho fighting for third place.

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  117. Not really. We dominated the second half but didn't create too much.

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  118. System change happened half time bud, As soon as second half kicked off you could tell we had a single pivot in midfield.

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  119. I would have said that after first half but once we came through that I don't think we were ever worried and we could and should have made more of our positional superiority. Also hit the post.

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  120. If one team was going to win in the second it was going to be us. And it was us ha ha.

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  121. Yes we will do it once Studge kicks in. He hasn't scored in two whole games. For him that's a crisis.

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  122. Na, he may well end up at Madrid but I think there'll be a stepping stone first. No reason that couldn't be us

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  123. Men of the match for me, Allen and Mignolet. But because most people will probably say Mignolet Ill go got Allen 😄

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  124. Well if someone pays him 130k, I'd rather it wasnt us. Hes a decent player but Luis Suarez he is not.

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  125. Take the points and walk away quietly.

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  126. Liverpool probably have special short segments on their LFCTV channel for just that. Also a half hour program where Emre gives his latest hair styling tips.

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  127. Just caught this one ha ha.

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  128. Why didn't Sturridge find the center of the box? I couldn't figure out where he was playing most of the time. He should have scored late to put it out of reach, but the passes are always too late and we chronically head the ball to nobody..and we continue to lose about every 50-50 ball. Migs MotM for keeping us in it. Butt-ugliest match I have seen yet. The rain made it worse but that was ugly. I agree slink out of the stadium and wait till you're on the bus and out of Wales before anyone celebrates. A lucky win is still a win.

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  129. Hey Jaimie,
    Can we have some stats on Mignolet since he got back into the team? You were quick to slaughter him when things weren't going so well, and understandably so, so it would be nice to see his stats since his comeback. Thanks!

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  130. Yep - thank goodness nobody listened to me!


    Told you we'd burgle an undeserved three points with a late(ish) goal :-) Unlucky Swansea and good for us.

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  131. Is Sterling on a ban now?

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  132. apart from his pace he's nothing special.

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  133. agreed mignolet was even better.

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  134. I thought they changed it twice, only decisively when Gerrard came on? I'd have another look but that was a truly terrible match to watch on TV -- not much desire to sit through it again.

    Speaking of which, I wish they'd give us the option to watch from a static position on halfway, zoomed out so we could see the shape of the teams. I really don't need all these close ups of handsome young chaps snorting mucus, offering outrageous curses, and pretending that they have sore legs, which the directors apparently find so terribly interesting.

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  135. Migs - great shot stopper and made two fine saves yesterday to keep us in the game first half.

    However cannot kick or distribute the ball.

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  136. Hmmn - sorry no. Allen was poor first half, along with the majority of the team. Did a decent job second half with lots of energy.

    I am only hoping and expecting for Lucas to regain his place when he is fit again, and then for LFC to find a permanent replacement for this key position in the summer.

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  137. I happen to think he's an exceptional talent but his final ball leaves a lot to be desired. That is fine, he's only 20 years old but when you compare him to Coutinho who is two years older there is still some work to do before he is even on that level. Let alone on that of someone who makes 130k a week.

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  138. For someone who has always accused BR of not having a plan B, I need to give BR loads of credit:

    1. For changing things at half time (more aggression, pushing the wing backs up against the full backs)

    2. With the introduction of SG changing to a modified diamond in the middle confusing Swansea and allowing Hendo the freedom to make the run that led to the goal.

    Well done BR.

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  139. Defo two changes - hence load of credit to BR.

    Should not mask the fact that we didn't really play well or click.

    Main thing though is the 3 points, and sometimes you need to win ugly - but win!

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  140. OK I watched it again. And you're right. Allen drops back 10 yards, Lallana goes left, Henderson right, Coutinho to the tip. It's quite an interesting formation actually with the wide players keeping their role pretty much the same, maybe pushing on a little.

    But looking at it further, Henderson, Allen, Lallana still rotate to receive possession from the back players, it's not just Allen stuck there. So really it's almost a 3-(2)-3-1-1, where the (2) wide players can add themselves to any of the lines: at moments it was 3-3-1-3, at others 5-3-1-1, and so on.

    Then when Gerrard comes on the rotation stops and it becomes more like a 3-(2)-1-3-1, with Gerrard as the first 1 pretty much all the time. The effect of this which really made a difference was the extent to which it freed Henderson, who didn't have to rotate any more and could focus on getting forward. You can't do that with Allen in the anchor position because he can't be trusted to drop in to cover a CB bringing the ball forward, whereas Gerrard can.

    Sorry, droning on, I know you can see all this stuff for yourself. I'm just amazed. I never played in any formation remotely as fluid and complicated as this, which does so much to free the players to make their own decisions. It's incredible to see something like this Liverpool team thriving in English football. It's going to revolutionise our game I think.

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  141. It's nearly Total Football.

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  142. The fluidity has been a common theme for a while. Players cover positions for each other and that is perhaps why Rodgers likes versatile players so much. It is almost certainly why he has players play in unfamiliar roles. You get to understand the game better. Your dead right about the changing of positions. When Hendo would come to pick it up Allen would start getting forward. It was really interesting working out what was happening once we came back from the break.

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  143. It wasn't droning mate either. It was interesting to see what you saw from second viewing. You see more detail second time round as you are less edgy.

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  144. Yeah. We've seen interchanging and covering before in recent times, from coaches like Wenger and Rodgers -- even less progressive coaches like Ferguson used to have his wingers swap sides sometimes... one of his central midfielders was even allowed to run in to space behind sometimes if things got very sticky ;) Van Gaal would probably have a stroke at the very idea.

    But I think what feels like a significant change to me in this 3-4-3, and which opens up so many possibilities to change things spontaneously during the match, is the degree of freedom opened up by the assymetrical wing-backs. This, *twinned* with the rotational midfield, *and* the rotation between anchor man and centre backs, along with the more usual fluid use of the space between the lines by the attackers -- well the *whole* attacking system from back to front now has a potential fluidity which previously we'd have seen confined to one or two key areas.

    Maybe I'm getting overexcited, but I love the responsibility this gives to the players. If they have character and intelligence they can feed off each other and raise each others' level to places we've not often seen in English football.

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