Happy New Year!
A fresh start, a blank canvass, a new beginning…my arse. We all face the same problems on January 1st as we did on December 31st, and that includes Liverpool Football Club.
What problems, I hear you ask? Haven’t Liverpool won their last two league games to move level with Manchester United? Well, yes, they have. However that ignores a few salient points:
- Liverpool were pretty poor v Sunderland and only squeaked home against a terrible, terrible team
- Manchester United have been garbage for weeks and they’ve only now matched them on points, and trail them on goal difference.
Momentum is a rare but valued asset in football and Liverpool have a chance to make it three wins in a row in the league for the first time in 2016. Don’t bother looking up the record books, I know for a fact that’s correct.
Once again there is a potential return for Daniel Sturridge in the offing. Jurgen Klopp has been insistent that Sturridge gets a number of weeks training under his belt before his next
breakdown return, however following the injury to Origi and the ‘form’ of Benteke, the need for a pacy, mobile front man to play ahead of Lallana-Coutinho-Frimino takes precedence over a practical approach to the striker made from balsa wood.
Liverpool are also waiting to see how Jordan Henderson and Mamadou Sakho recover from their resepective injuries and knocks received at the Stadium of Light. Latest reports indicate that Sakho does indeed still have two legs, following that horror tackle by Jeremaine Lens.
West Ham are hopeful of welcoming Dimitri Payet back into the squad, which will provide them with a welcome New Year boost. However they are still without the likes of Sakho and Moses. There will be a late check on Andy Carroll to see if his hair can be done in time to make the early kick-off. It takes 5 hours to plait that hair each morning and with a 12.45pm KO, nobody is willing to wake Andy at 7.45am.
Liverpool will be hoping to gain revenge on the Hammers following their 0-3 mauling at Anfield last August, a match which saw Lanzini, Noble and Sakho score, Coutinho and Noble saw red, the Anfield faithful saw a bleak future and Brendan Rodgers saw his P45 travelling towards him at speed.
Fantasy Football Tip: If Sturridge plays he scores. Possibly twice.