4 Mar 2012

Mark Wright: I'm 'gobsmacked' over Liverpool's defeat to Arsenal

As the old saying goes, 'football is a funny old game', and that applies to Liverpool more than most other teams this season. The team has played well so many times over the last 7 months but come away with nothing, and yesterday's game was no exception. Liverpool dominated against a poor Arsenal side, yet ended up losing the match. Given the performance, it was a barely believable result, and it left former Liverpool defender Mark Wright sick to the stomach.

Speaking to LFC TV after the game, Wright could not believe how Liverpool had lost the game. He argued:

"I'm gobsmacked. That's the best I've seen Liverpool play this season.

"It was a complete performance, from the defenders to the midfield, to the partnership of Kuyt and Suarez.

"It was exceptional. We hit the post twice; their keeper has had a very good game, and we've missed a penalty.

"I don't know what to say about it - I feel so sorry for that dressing room. It's the best performance, but they've got beat again".

I'm not sure it was a 'complete performance', but the the team definitely played fairly well for large portions of the game. Performance alone is not good enough though; if points were awarded for good performances, Liverpool would probably be near the top of the league right now.

Liverpool obviously need more clinical finishers in the team, but that alone will not solve the problem. End product in the final third is the real issue - whether that's the final pass; crosses; corners; free kicks, or any other attacking action in the top half of the field, it all needs to improve next season, and the only way that is going to happen is (IMO) if Liverpool buy genuinely creative and technically gifted players.

If I have to see one more cross just hoofed aimlessly into the box and failing to beat the first man...

Jaimie Kanwar


  1. We lack quality and composure in the final third. We need an attacking mid and a finisher if we are to ever see the UCL again.

  2. I think two names sum up this loss very well: Adam, Carragher one giving the ball away and lacking vision, always trying to be too ambitious, the other losing his marker with both goals. the team for not making enough effort in the second half, partially with kenny waiting to make subs till the next game

  3. About time one of them stepped up to be the new cult hero any one in the team from the defence, midfield or forwards like we have had in the past with Garcia, Mellor, Mcallister, Rosenthal and Hypia .
    Kelly miss his big chance yesterday.

  4. Again what game were all of you watching it was carragher fault for the first goal and pepe for the second, never should a keeper like pepe be bet at the near post, he dident even try to save it and as for carragher well again a yes man for king k who knows sure it not his fault, it was sky sports pundits who cause that.There the two not the rest of the team who lost us the game..

  5. well we were playing arsenal not wolves!! was almost the complete performance. someone please tell me why adams is better than shelvey?
    were wasting that boy on loan. adams is just garbage, if hes not giving away stupid free kicks hes trying to constantly do hollywood passes and fails basic passes. alonso never always set the world alight but he done the basic things well and keeping the ball and bideing his time for the right pass. untill liverpool get a reliable steady centre mid in we can forget it

  6. We knew months back that we needed a true out and out goalscorer, but the club decided not to break the bank to get a proven striker. We took the gamble and hoped that the rest of the team would make up the goals. Sorry kenny u cannot use bad luck as an excuse, its very unprofessional. I think kenny really needs to carry himself and the club better when giving interviews......the game is based on 3 points won or lost and nothing else when u keep making the same mistakes. Unfortunately its survival of the fittest now a days and u just cannot run on emotion or shankly theories anymore.

  7. Jamie Kanwar has got it spot on. Every time I watch Liverpool I'm screaming for them to have a bit of composure going forward. They seem clueless and a far cry to the team at the back end of last season. When I see Carroll on the pitch, his positional sense is terrible, he always hangs back around the edge of the area when we counter attack, Suarez can do everything but finish. Henderson looks so nervous and out of his depth (still 20/21), Adam (11 assists this season) has bizarrely lost his ability to pass, Downing does not look a 20 million pound player though he is gradually improving. For me Spearing looked our best player yesterday. A free talent out shinning 47 million pounds worth of 'British star quality'. I really hope Dalglish signs a couple of flair players to add some creativity, it's so frustrating to watch.

  8. Agreed that Kelly missed our best chance of the 2nd half - but, really, don't you reckon it is symptomatic of our midfielders and forwards being so lacking in ambition and awareness that it was our right back who was standing where one of them should have been?

    I think, if we look at the figures (and they're pretty poor), Johnson and Skrtel have score more goals for us that Adam, Downing anf Henderson combined. 

  9. I feel you on that. I have no optimism when I see Adam on a freekick or corner. He didn't have one good kick of the ball in that game. Poor old Spearing. 

  10. i totally agree why the hell does he allways take set pieces everytime i see him step up, we all know its just going to fall short an be cleared by the first defender

  11. I have noticed that when Adam played for Blackpool, he was good in the first half of the season, but the rest, he was crap.  He should not be allowed to take any set pieces from now on - even in Gerrards absence.

    After the Cup final, downing seems to be getting better, so I would put Bellamy and Downing in charge of set-pieces now.

    As for penalties, I would go for the following (if playing and in order and in Stevies absence):
    1) Carragher
    2) Johnson
    3) Downing
    4) Kuyt
    5) anyone but Adam, Henderson and Suarez

  12. Final passes, crosses, corners, and freekicks were all Charlie Adam was supposed to be good at; yet these areas are where we have fallen short. Dalglish fought tough and nail to get him. Who do we blame now?

  13. By the sounds of it we are not going to buy big in the summer. I suppose money is primarily an issue, but also Kenny would not admit he has made some howlers in the market and replace all his buys. I think we should promote some youth, get a bit of pace around the team

  14. Utter nonsense, was he watching the same game? average, uninspiring
    football. what i can't believe is that no one is saying anything about
    how poor we have been this season. we scraped the worthless mug and NONE
    of kenny's buys have come good, even enrique is looking crap these

    had any other manager spent as much as kenny has and done this badly,
    the axe would be hanging. Kenny does not improve players like rafa does,
    in fact he makes them worse. then to hear him say he is happy with the
    squad and doesn't need to buy anyone else is drivel. kenny should be
    held accountable like anyone else. he's lost his mind, talks so much
    shit and has made himself look a fool. the sooner he's gone the better.

  15. Was n't it the midfield players and forward who recovered the ball from the right wing after a corner where Kelly should have been? Why Kuyt left the box went chasing after the corner then had to put the cross in? We can blame different players if we want for or the team could just start taking their chances.

  16. carragher would be the 1st one to add up to the fact that he lost van persie...terribly!letting him get goal side was criminal.the back 4 lost composure without danny"hansen" agger and the better alll rounder right back johnson whose constant running from defence is a constant menace.we are creating chances but our conversion rate-i do believe it's 8.46% is the worst in europe.our midfielders are being outscored by our defenders,there's no guille in unlocking defences.one example was when towards the end of the game ,i think it was kuyt running in acres of space on the right of arsenal's gapping defence,adam attracted 3 arsenal players around him on the left and instead of feeding a slide rule pass which if he did kuyt was on a one-on one, he turned 360 degrees tried to carry on the run,and lost it for a goal kick.no composure or vision on his part.i would like to see suso,sterling ,morgan and coates given a run out!the problem could've been addressed in the january transfer window-sadly it wasn't to be!

  17. we have the worst conversion rate in europe 8.46%.our defenders are outscoring our midfielders.there's no guille from our midfielders.huffing and puffing is not enough.adam had the chance to put  i think it was kuyt clean through in the 2nd half,and instead of finding composure and look up,it was a heads down run-attracting THREE arsenal players to him,did a 360 degree turn and then lost the ball and claiming it was a foul in the process.we missed the composure and ball playing skills of agger at the back,johnson's all roundedness and although kelly is slightly a better defender,johnson has a lot more class and composure going forward.we lost the chance to buy in january to address the situation-sadly we didn't.me personally i would give coates,suso ,sterling and morgan a run out!

  18. Definitely, surely we've spent as much as Chelsea? They are 7 points ahead of us and their manager has been fired. Arsenal spent nothing and are miles ahead. Newcastle are ahead of us!! We are slipping towards mid table and maybe that is where we deserve to be and maybe that is what it will take for the owners to make a change.

    And we played some decent football on saturday but nothing that you couldn't see, for example, Swansea playing if they were at home to Arsenal. Most of the real quality on display, creating chances, crossing, finishing, came from Arsenal unfortunately.

  19. Carragher inexplicably condeded the throw-in leading to the second goal, and then completely lost Van Persie to allow him to take an unchallenged volley from inside the box.

    I'd rather watch Coates making those mistakes 'due to inexperience', than watch Carragher make them because he just isn't good enough anymore.

  20. We have a quality attacking midfielder that has proven to be a matchwinner time and again in recent years. For some reason Dalglish keeps playing him as a holding midfielder though, and allowing Henderson the freedom to roam around the pitch with no end product...

  21. I'm not, as our finishing (and creating proper chances. Look at Downing's woeful cross for thought should have been a tap in for Suarez, on the weekend. Horrendous cross, for should have been a easy one) has been woeful throughout this season. If that was our 'best' performance, than I am worried, as a 'best' performance from a club like ours should include some real quality in finishing and creating proper chances. We may cut teams open at times but our final pass/move is lacking and incoherent, as well as the finishing simply being dud. Only so much you can put down to 'bad luck', sometimes it is simply that some players aren't good enough. 

  22. The sooner the club accepts this, the better. Another loss and it is time to give youngsters a run out, I think, and to try to win the FA Cup. Don't see us finishing higher than 6th now. Chelsea and Newcastle have done their best to give us hope but we keep messing that up. Arsenal are possibly the best team to be 10 points ahead, as they can implode at any time. But, unfortunately, we don't look good enough to capitalise even if the three teams ahead of us do all blow up over the last couple of months. None of those sides deserve to get 4th and, yet, they are still well in front of us. I was all for Hodgson moving on and I felt Benitez had taken us as far as possible, in the circumstances, so it has to be the same for Dalglish. Benitez would have done a lot better with the money Dalglish has wasted.

    But i think the club needs a completely new direction, not keep harping on about the past.

  23. goodbye Europe time to give the youngsters some premier league experience at least they'll give their heart out even though they'll make some mistakes they will learn much quicker and see whether they will make it or not

  24. Well, its goodbye champions league, anyway. As well as bad finishing and lack of creativity, our movement off the ball could be better. Which makes me wonder about the quality of our coaching.

    But our best recent result, 3-0 at Wolves, has been bettered by two of the last 3 teams that have played Wolves lately. They got battered by WBA and Fulham and both those teams are near us in the league. I suspect that we are not a million miles ahead of those sides.

  25. Exactly. So we won the won the Carling Cup - but the manner in which we won it against a Championship side leaves a lot to be desired.

    How Kenny can say that, regardless of all else that happens this season, winning this trophy alone means we have improved over last season is beyond me.

    I don't know about anybody else but my main criteria for judging improvement is our position on the table. By that score, we haven't improved at all - and are in serious danger of going backwards.

    I think Kenny is obsessed with only giving his purchases a run in the starting XI.