22 Mar 2014

'Absolutely electric' - Hamann, SAS, BR, Coutinho etc hail 'outstanding' win

The feel-good factor continues. Liverpool's magnificent 6-3 victory over Cardiff City today makes it three away wins in a row for the Reds, a huge turnaround from earlier in the season when the club's form on the road left a lot to be desired. Brendan Rodgers' team just will not be denied, though, and despite going behind twice during the game, Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge produced yet another attacking master-class to help LFC grab all three points.

Post match reaction/tweets:

Brendan Rodgers

"We lost the ball once or twice too cheaply. But we were still an offensive threat; at half-time we just shortened the pitch a bit more and reinforced our idea to dominate the ball. Obviously that led to our creation of chances"

Daniel Sturridge

"Buzzing to help the team win!! Striving to be second to none... 8 more cup finals"

Luis Suarez

"Very happy for the victory and the hat-trick. But the important thing is the great work we did today".

Philippe Coutinho

"Happy to be a part of that group. Good victory today!! Come on Reds"

Didi Hamann

"Great performance by the lads again. a few nervy moments and sloppy passing in the first half, but you always felt they had another one or two gears to go up. Absolutely electric going forward."

Phil Babb

"Some of the football and possession was sublime. SAS is the best strike partnership in the best league in the world".

Bitter Ex-Manc

"I couldn't care less [about LFC's title chances]. At 2-2 we've got two lads off for their corner on the third goal. There must be a way of looking at that rule because you've got no chance to defend them. I thought football was a common sense game, but for me it's absolutely nonsense."

Given the fact Solksjaer is a former Man United player, and played a big part in 'knocking LFC of its fu**ing perch', it's hardly surprising that he's irritated by Liverpool's resurgence :-)

A few points:

* Six goals this season for Martin Skrtel now. Another immense contribution from the Slovakian, and I personally hope he's still at the club next season.

* Jon Flanagan had a nightmare game. Constantly gave the ball away; sloppy passing, and Cardiff exposed his suspect positioning time and time again.

* On the other side, Glen Johnson put in another sold performance, especially going forward, where he overlapped effectively throughout the game.

* Some great passing from Henderson, particularly his through-ball to Johnson during the build-up to Luis Suarez's first goal. Some pinpoint-accurate, Gerrard-esque diagonals too.

* Some more suspect defending from Agger, and Frazier Campbell went past him like he wasn't there for Cardiff's second goal. Not great. The death knell is sounding for Agger's Anfield future.

* Good assist for Coutinho, but he seems to be slowly losing his position as an automatic starter. If Rodgers buys one or two attacking players over the summer (which seems likely), he will have some major competition for his place next season, and may fall further behind in the pecking order.

* I've argued this point before, but the diamond formation doesn't seem to work as well against teams with pacy/good quality attacking players. Cardiff proved that again in the first half, and if it was Chelsea or Man City instead of a relegation team, the Reds might've been 3 or 4 down at half time. It's too easy to get the better of LFC at times: Start fast; play a high-tempo game, and put serious pressure on the full-backs = LFC disarray.

* Once again, the diamond also curtailed the effectiveness of the attacking player at it's head (Coutinho). That formation just doesn't seem to suit his style of play. SAS bailed the Reds out again (4 goals/2 assists between them), but at some point, Liverpool will come unstuck. Hopefully, Rodgers will revert to 433 for five remaining home games.

In his post-match interview, Brendan Rodgers described the three goals conceded by the team as 'poor', and he's right. The defensive side of things needs a massive shake-up in the summer, but right now, results are all that matter, and if the Reds win every game 5-4 until the end of the season, then so be it.



  1. Oh yeah...that first half passing was horrible...so many balls just pushed right to Cardiff.

  2. Nicolas Chamberlain8:28 pm, March 22, 2014

    Spot on.
    The pitch was too large in the 1st half, our midfield was all over the place when defending, and I was very happy we were level at halftime. The 2nd half we played some brilliant attacking football, but our sloppy defending need to be sorted out. If we can keep that deadly composure in attack, nothing is impossible.

  3. Flanagan was not on the pitch anymore when they scored their third though. And the first one was caused by a misplaced pass from Allen rather than Flanagan's positioning. For the second goal there was no pressure at all on the opposition in midfield.

  4. Great run from Sterling for Luis' third at the end. Without the run, the goalkeeper would have had a much better chance to defend Suarez one vs. one. Bit disappointed for Sterling that Luis did not pass it towards him or thanked him first before celebrating the goal with the fans.

  5. The problem is in the speed of our defence in a whole. Excpet Sakho all our defence players are too slow. You could seethat at the 1. and 2. goal. Our defence was tricked and outrunned. Especially at the 2. goal Agger was as a snail and Cardiff player passed him with easy.

    For the third goal Skrtel is to blame. If you check the video you will see Skrtel gave too much space to Cardiff attacker.

    Ilori was bought for the future. He is ultra fast. I think Rogers want to build fast defence in the future and Saho and Ilori are the first ones. Skrtel and Agger will leave as soon as decent fast replacement players are found on the market.

    Fast defender is assurance for not being outrun from fast tricky technical attackers.

  6. Man City now have a run of games: ManU (A), Arsenal (A), Southampton (H), Liverpool (A). If they win 3/4 of these, they'll win the PL. Full Stop.

    However, were they to drop the odd point here and there and lose at Anfield, then we have a really great shout.

    As for Chelsea, they only have one tough fixture left at Anfield. I just hope they beat PSG, cos then their semi final legs will be either side of their Anfield trip, making it more likely for a Liverpool win.

    So keep dreaming - win all our games and who knows :-)

  7. Win all our games and we win the league by at least 2 points fact.

  8. I hope so - but if City win all their games except at Anfield, they'll win the PL.

  9. ive signed up because of two reasons.
    1. i like the debate on this site
    2. the extreme bias towards english players.
    first off fantastic game. im dreaming of the title.cant stop looking at the league title

    secondly the ox incident today. all the attention has been diverted to the refs appalling decision but i haven't heard much about the disgusting cheating by ox. just watched MOTD and nothing to say. just used the refs mistake divert the real problem. i find it funny actually especially as he didn't even need to handball it.

    we all know how much our number 7 was pulverized for his blatant handball but he got the deserved punishment yet it was spoken about again and again. i believe luis deserves some of the criticism he gets because he brings it on his self.

    what i don't agree with is when you are not consistent with your views. i hope jamie says something about this issue as he is very quick to point out flaws with luis. i know jamie says that he doesn't write about issues that dont affect liverpool but he has in the past. i would like to know what jamie thinks about this ridiculous piece of cheating.

  10. I think they also targeted Flanno when they knew he'd be alone. His lack of experience showed. He'll get better because of this.

  11. Not only did he leave too much space but at the last minute he ran in front of SM and shielded his vision. SM may have made a stop but Skrtel was in the way.

  12. I don't have a problem with it, I just discuss it. Gerrard's goals this season have nothing to do with his new position, FACT, so you just manufacture some other argument about how difficult penalties are. But whatever, stick to being indoctrinated.

    I love how you pinpointed Agger for the first goal but totally ignored Allen's massive error. Campbell also zipped past Gerrard in the first minute which got Stevie in the book. Agger got done by the same move for the second goal.

    When you talk about players bottling it, do you mean players like Joe Allen?

  13. I am a genius.

  14. The diamond has to go. Coutinho was decent today but Sterling was given no opportunity to make an impact, he couldn't be seen on the ball after coming on. The diamond benefits SAS and Gerrard but a regular 4-3-3 benefits the whole team. We'd get much more out of Hendo, Allen, Sterling and Coutinho if we switched back.

    I also can't believe how Lucas didn't get any minutes during the game when Gerrard was on a yellow and all Allen did was give away fouls and gift the opposition a goal. I recognised Allen's defensive contributions during the last two matches, but against Cardiff he was worthless. He gets his opportunities but never seems to take them.

    Last point, I reckon Henderson is turning into a real leader within the squad. Whenever the cameras were focused on Hendo you could see him bossing players and telling them where to be.

  15. Being honest, I don't think they will, but I also don't think we will, if they do, bar Anfield, they will win by a point, let's hope that blue lot fcuk em up on the 3rd of May cos utd and arsenal will get rolled over.

  16. I'd switch to 4-3-3, put both of them in and drop Allen. If we are lacking control of the game we can always bring Lucas on, but at home and with the way we are going, I think we will dominate.

    Teams have rattled us when they have been looking to play. Cardiff is an example, Stoke threatened us, Hull beat us. Parking the bus has worked in the past, notoriously under Kenny Dalglish, but I think that's the wrong mentality for other teams to have because SAS can score at any moment and if you're parking the bus but concede a goal the plan goes out the window.

  17. 2 more wins and we are back in the champions league woop woop

  18. Crazy Legs Djimi12:41 am, March 23, 2014

    He won't write about this topic because it won't stir a reaction. He knows if he writes about Suarez it will get a people to reaction. He's like that argumentative girlfriend who stir's up fights as a catalyst for a heated atmosphere... Atleast when I argue with my girlfriend we have 'make up cuddles', here you either get deleted or patronised. Wouldn't hold your breath fella, likely he won't bat a eyelid.

  19. okay the defence was a bit hairy today, you must remember it was Cardiff,hard for Flanno to raise his game after last week,give him a chance he is 1 for the future,Allen & Agger were very sloppy today no doubt , & i dont think you can blame Skrtel ,he was drawn to Johnson s marker for that goal,but at the end of the day we score six,are second in the table ,thanks to Arsene & his weaklings we should be breathing down the" Specials One s " neck.Lets enjoy the moment & not dwell negativity on a great season so far.

  20. Thinking that myself,Sterling has provided many a file this season for S & S ,a little selfish maybe ,i suppose Danny /Raheem/Jordan has stolen a little thunder this season from Luis,& we can expect this but we wont complain .

  21. I blame Suarez's new boots

  22. Nice win of course but several tense moments. Easily could have trailed 2-1 or 3-1 but didn't. When the pressing returned so did the scoring. Allen did some dumb things today. His pass mistake set up Cardiff 1st half and idiotic tackle of Fabio in the attacking zone was senseless. Coutinho showed a bit more energy. Still a great passer but can't shoot for beans. Whenever he improves his shooting, look out!
    This week will test of legs and bench.....good to get Sakho back. Maybe we will see Ibe or texeira get some meaningful minutes. Flanno could do with a little rest as well".....he still has played just great for us despite some lapses today.
    Lastly, this was a great win simply because we were not at our best and this was another example of NOT dropping points against a weaker team that was fired up to play us. Last 5 yrs, we lose or tie this game...not now

  23. Rodgers has programmed the team to win. Our attacking football is sublime and we put our opposition to the sword. Gone are the days where we play for the draw or choke under pressure. Long may this continue.

    11 points away from guaranteeing a CL spot so lets call it 4 wins. We are back!

  24. Agreed on Flanagan but as we concluded last week, when he had a rock solid game, he is young and he'll be somewhat inconsistent. I'd prefer to see him at right back anyway with another left back being brought in. We're being linked to Shaw today which imho is ridiculous if he should cost 20 million. On the other hand, we paid only four million less for an older Glen Johnson and he has been solid for us for quite a few years now. Still, I prefer Ben Davies of Swansea. I think he's as talented and suitable to our system as Shaw but at only half the price.

  25. I love how people want to discuss our defensive problems. Personally, if we win every game 6-3 between now and the end of the season, I'd be delighted! We play a high pressing game and that opens you up to counter attacks at times. Sure we need to switch faster between attack and defense but that's not really a matter of new players. The players we have are more than capable. It's a matter of perfecting the system even more.

  26. Merson forgot one thing...they weren't playing Everton yesterday. They were playing the real deal.

  27. Quite close anyway :-)

    How about Sunderland? I'd say the bidding starts at 2-0 for the customary Suarez and Sturridge goals.

  28. That is interesting. I'd have thought he scored a lot more before. Probably because he scored more from open play whereas under Rodgers 75% of those goals were probably penalties.

  29. 4-3-3, 4-2-2-2, 3-5-2, 4-1-3-2, 4-3-1-2 and 4-1-2-1-2 are all formations Rodgers has used this season. What it shows is that Rodgers has the ability to get results no matter what formation he decides to go with. It has also made us one of the most dangerous and least predictable teams around.

    Tactically Rodgers is getting it right most of the time. We are also unbeaten in 2014. I have never seen better attacking football from any Liverpool team two decades. 82 goals in 30 matches. If we continue at this rate then we will end with more than 100 goals for the season. Oh I cannot wait for those great European nights to return to Anfield!

  30. Yes it wil be interesting to see if he transfers that style of play to Europe or takes a more cautious approach.

  31. I have to agree. That was one of the top 100 sloppiest hat tricks I have ever seen - shocking

  32. the goals we conceded where down to tactics and personnel flanno is a right footed playing in a left footed position .What ever way you swing it he will get caught out of body position .....coupled with the fact that allen ( not the fastest of players) was covering a quasi wing back role we where asking for trouble against any team with fast players which run the channels from deep ive high lighted this weakness all season even in pre season

  33. When we play at home, Coutinho(21) and Sterling(19) along with Suarez and Sturridge(24) should always be in the starting line up. They bring the class, creativity, pace and speed of attack up a notch. Away from home, one should always be sacrificed for J Allen(24) as away from home he offers better cover defensively than Coutinho(21).

    Flannagan(20) is young and has done remarkably well this season, but he is no left back and against the lesser sides away from Home he has been exposed. In the summer, B Rodgers needs to bring in B Davies(20) Of Swansea for £5-£8M to compete and Cover J Enrique(27)
    Cissokho(26) has been an abyzmal loan signing. Otherwise he would play ahead of Flannagan game in game out as he is left footed, quicker than flannagan. Ok at defending, but he has no football brain and looks like a headless chicken when he has ball at his feet.

    Allen(24), Agger(29) and Flannagan(20) were at fault during one or all the goals scored yesterday.

    Johnson(29), Sakho(23) and Skrtel(29) are the best defenders at club when they are fully fit and injury free, they are hardest to beat and rarely get beat 1 vs 1 in situations. In summer : B Rodgers needs to bring in 5 Defensive players and 3 attacking players.

    But only after B Rodgers ships out the 8 dead wood average or injury prone players, 1 world class player he no longer has trust in and the two abyzmal and pathetic loan signings we brought to club this season:

    GK: B Jones GK: P Reina CB: S Coates CB: K Toure

    RB: M Kelly LB: A Cissokho AM: L Alberto RW: O Assaidi

    LW: V Moses FD: F Borini FD: I Aspas

    Five Defensive players: GK, CB, RB, LB and a DM

    GK: A Mccarthy(24) Of Reading for £4-£7M to compete with Mignolet(25)

    CB: S Caulker(22) Of Cardiff for £7-£11M to compete with Skrtel(29)

    RB: N Clyne(23) Of Southampton for £5-£9M to compete with Johnson(29)

    LB: B Davies(20) Of Swansea for £5-£8M to compete with Enrique(27)

    DM: M'Vila(23) Of Rubin Kazan for £7-£11M to compete with Lucas(27)

    Those 5 Defensive players will shore up defence and bring more class, quality, quality competition for places to the Squad.

  34. I'm sure that all the Cardif fans went home having a laugh about that goofy Luis Suarez.

  35. In current form, Luis has every right to be selfish. Suarez is leading in goals AND assists btw.

  36. I understand where you are coming from but the reason we conceded three was not due to playing a high line and pressing up as much as it was to do with poor passing, poor positional play and Agger being beaten way too easily.

  37. Obviously he is banging in the goals,no doubt about that but is benefitting well & getting great service from his hardworking team mates,btw.

  38. I'm worried about this game to be honest. It's coming around very fast and there were signs of tiredness in the squad yesterday. Agger is looking vulnerable and has been a bit lucky since his comeback not to have seen his positional errors cost us more. I like quite a few of Sunderland's players, they've got grit and quality and will play without fear.

    Basically I think we're going to get mugged I'm afraid.

  39. I am not sure whether I should find the criticism for Daniel "clean sheets" Agger amusing or not. I don't like but thought it odd.

  40. I concur.. and I like a front three of the SASAS and centre three of SG, Hendo and Courtinho.

  41. Good points - and hard to disagree.

    Common theme of Allen not taking his chances again. However, he seems to be a BR favourite, hence don't expect him to be dropped even though he should be.

  42. Agree.. but we need to look to fix our problems rather than sticking the head in the sand. There are lots and lots of positives no doubt.

    We can't be this lax in defence against either of Chelsea of City.

  43. I don't enjoy talking about the defence after a 6-3 win. But if we hadn't clawed it back to 2-2 at half time it could have been a different outcome.

  44. I am sure Chelsea and City have, cos I don't think they're looking forward to the trip to Anfield. Chelsea with defo be set up for the draw. Not sure City can defend for a draw.

  45. Opening few paras - completely agree and good analysis.

    Don't necessarily agree with the wholesale change approach - just look at Spurs. Much better to buy 2-3 top top big money players (LB, CB, DM) and then spend average money on 1-2 bench warmers.

    As much as I'd like the additional numbers you mention, I don't think we will have the money. Also you don't want a whole new team as it will break whatever harmony we have now which is making us so feared at the moment.

  46. This LFC defence will concede atleast 2 goals against Chelshit and Mancs..question is can SAS outscore them playing against terry , cahill. I highly doubt it!

  47. Yes thats true ,B.R & Co need to tweak the defence for the big matches ,we get away with it at lesser places , but we have to be concerned about it for sure.

  48. Good shout mate

  49. That's true but I wasn't talking about this match in particular. For the second, by the way, Flanagan was out of sight so I can only assume it was because he was still up the other end of the pitch. But anyway, not talking about this particular match.

  50. But we did get one back and to be honest I never doubted we would. That's our strength, we always find a way to score and we have to strikers who average a goal a game. As such, we virtually start every match being 2-0 up.

  51. Not sure how our strike force "bailed us out". Isn't scoring goals their job?

  52. The reason we need to ship out the 8 dead wood average or injury players, 1 world class player manager no longer wants or has faith in, plus the two abyzmal, pathetic loan signings we brought to club this season. Thats 11 players off the books.

    Then the 8 class quality players are needed to strengthen squad: As currently we have a poor weak squad, we have 12-13 class good players and 11-12 average/poor players.

    And if we plan to be successful in league and europe(Champions League) we need to bring better class,quality, quality competition for places to club.

    And this season our defence has been a weakest spot, so 5 defensive players are needed.

    In 5 key areas: So there is class quality , quality competition in all the defensive positions: GK, CB, RB, LB and A DM : 4 Out of the 5 of Players are British:

    GK: A Mccarthy(24) Of Reading for £4-£8M

    CB: S Caulker(22) Of Cardiff for £8-£12M

    RB: N Clyne(23) Of Southampton for £5-£8M

    LB: B Davies(20) Of Swansea for £5-£8M

    DM: M'Vila(23) Of Rubin Kazan for £8-£12M

    And Four attacking players: 3 of them are British:

    Coutinho(21) needs class, quality competition for his position:
    (AM) A Lallana(25) Of Southampton for £12-£18M

    Sterling(19) needs class, quality competition for his position
    (RW) N Redmond(20) Of Norwich for £5-£8M

    We need a pacey quick skillful left footed left winger: LW : A Johnson(26) Of Sunderland in swap deal with F Borini(22)

    Sturridge(24) needs class,quality competition for his place:
    FD: L Muriel(23) Of Udinese for £14-£18M

    Those 9 players would take squad to next level, B rodgers could bring in £30-£40M on shipping out the 9 players on the books.

    And the two abyzmal, comical and pathetic loan signings.

    And then the 9 class quality players would cost the club £90-£100M, So £60-£70M off the owners would be needed .

    And the players would be for now and future of club.

  53. Like I say there is definitley truth in what you say but if you look at how many goals we have scored from individual mistakes. Errors and own goals etc have cost us a lot of goals. Your dead right to mention the full backs pushing up so high as it does leave space and that can lead to extra pressure which can lead to mistakes. But I honestly don't think it has been as much about that as players switching off or having brain farts. Concentration needs to be high in defence and I can honestly say I see a lack of concentration far too often in our players. That goes for the whole team. If Flanno is caught up field where are the midfielders covering him? One od the goals on Sat Gerard gets on to the threat way too late. Allen had one of his poorer games in that regard too.

  54. I agree that we can still improve. I just don't feel it's all about new players. It's also about allowing the ones we have to improve. Anyway, I'm sure we will see new players in the summer and I can only hope they'll actually make us stronger because none of last summer's recruits seems to have done so.

  55. I think that is harsh. I very much like the look of Sakho and believe he has all the attributes to improve us given time. His injury came at the worst of times for him as I think he could have established himself. I myself am not writing off the youngsters either. Players who we may have hoped could have come in and been revelations but were always bought looking forward. Will they make us stronger in the long run? Who knows. For now only Sakho can be seen that way I think.

  56. I'm not saying they won't come good. I'm saying so far they haven't impacted our season much.

  57. Suarez, Sturridge and co definitely have what it takes to put more than two past Chelski. Mourinho will fear our pace more than anything, and he's likely to sit back, park the bus, and try to grind out a 1-0 win or 0-0 draw.

    But this will invite pressure, and with the atmosphere at Anfield there is no way Chelski will get away with trying to play for a 1-0 win or 0-0 draw without succumbing to the pressure.

    So if he takes the unlikely alternative and sets Chelski up to attack we'll tear their slow central defencers apart on the break.