30 Apr 2008

Peter Crouch must start against Chelsea tonight if Liverpool want to win the game

Liverpool’s 4-2-3-1 formation must be dropped if Liverpool are to achieve the impossible and beat Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

It has been proven time and time again this season that Liverpool’s 4-2-3-1 formation - with Steven Gerrard playing behind Fernando Torres - does not work against good defences.

Against the likes of Bolton, Newcastle, Wigan and other poor defences, it works like a charm, but against the world’s top defenders, Gerrard and Torres are regularly squeezed out of the game.

Liverpool need to throw a curve ball and play Gerrard on the right and have Crouch partner Torres. In the last round, Liverpool switched to 4-4-2 and ended up beating Arsenal 4-2.

The same thing can happen again against Chelsea. And whenever Crouch has played against Chelsea, he has made an impact.

Gerrard by his own admission had one of his worst games for Liverpool in the 4-2 victory against Arsenal.

The team does not need to rely solely on him to beat Chelsea, and for the sake of the balance of the team, Gerrard should play on the right tonight.

I would choose the following team:

------------------------------ Reina

Finnan -------------- Carra --------- Skrtl---------- Riise

--------------------------- Mascherano

Gerrard -------------------- Alonso ----------------- Babel

--------------------- Crouch ------ Torres

Crouch has been superb for Liverpool this season, and as I’ve been arguing endlessly all year, if you start Crouch, he will invariably score or create a goal.

Just look at his stats - 41 goals scored/created in the last 46 games! In his last 4starts alone, he’s scored 3 goals and created 1 goal!

Rafa made the right decision to start Crouch against Arsenal, and tonight he needs to make the same decision again.

Playing 4-2-3-1 tonight will be madness, and if Liverpool line up that way, the game will be lost.


  1. Yeah, it seems the formation provides more balance and discipline in the middle of the park. Alonso will provide the range of accurate passes while sticking to his task at hand. I'm hoping too, Crouch will start the match against the Blues. If Crouch starts, I can imagine him providing the crucial assist via a header with Torres at the end of the killer goal.

  2. Totally agree, Jonathan. Crouch is on a roll at the moment, but then again, he's always on a roll, as 41 goals scored/created in the last 46 starts proves.

    I have no doubt that if Crouch plays, he will make a crucial contribution somewhere along the line.

    Defenders hate playing against him, and after Chelsea know what to expect with Torres/Gerrard partnership, and have handled it fine so far.

    Why not give them something different to think about?