Simon has conceded 4 goals from the last 6 shots on target he has faced. He faced one today and Wayne Rooney scored. David De Gea was at the other end and won the match for his team. This man is on the verge of getting a new 5-year deal. Unless we’re securing his services as ‘Reserve Keeper’ for the next five years, I’m baffled. I’m trying to be fair, but I look at the goalkeepers that our ‘rivals’ have: De Gea. Cech. Courtois. Lloris. We have Mignolet. Nah, I’m not having that. That’s not good enough. Sort it out Jurgen. Get this clown out of the first team next season please.
Average. Bang average. Once more. Got away with a horror mistake against Wayne Rooney early in the second half. Even worse however was when he was on the ball around the hour mark. Henderson was bursting through the middle. I saw it. You saw it. Everyone in Anfield saw it. A simple 30 yard ball over the top into 20 yards of space and we were in…Clyne didn’t see it. Or if he did he didn’t feel willing or able to play it. That’s not good enough. You have to at least try to play it. Jon Flanagan is almost back to full fitness, and I want him to get a run at the right-back slot. I’ve had enough.
Superb. This man gives his absolute all for the shirt, and I love him for that. He had several moments when he was exposed 1-on-1 against a player with considerably more pace, but he used all his experience to manage the situation and was never shown up. Got fed up with the ineptitude ahead of him late in the second half as he stormed forward to try and score himself. He’s adorable, and a natural leader. He is forming quite the partnership with Sakho. It will be interesting to see what happens when Lovren is fit again.
The signing of Steven Caulker must have seemed like a personal insult to Mamadou. Klopp publicly said Caulker was recruited to help at defending long balls and set-pieces. I’ve never seen Mamadou dominate in the air as much as he did today…for 75 minutes. Then he lost the one and only high ball in our box, to Fellaini, and we lost the game 1-0. I despair. I’m happy with Sakho though. He stays when the clearout happens. And it’s coming….
Grand. Fine. OK. Average. So-So. Meh. Adequate. Perfunctory.
Put in another decent shift, full of energy, passion and commitment. Some lovely build-up play, but let down by some poor finishing. I don’t feel he rose to the occasion after the United goal as I would have expected our Captain to do, but that may be down to fitness levels at this stage. It’s fair to say that he faded in the second half as United came into the game. His partnership with Can will blossom in time.
Alright, own up. Who put hallucinogens in Emre’s pre-match tea? Man dear, he started the game like he’d never seen a football before – he was WAY off the pace. Constantly robbed in possession, slow to see a pass, slow to play a pass. To his credit he improved as the match went on, and was the main leader of the (kind of) late charge after the United goal. We must keep in mind that he’s 21. That’s very young. If you’re 21 or less and reading this, believe me, it’s very young. If you’re over 21 and reading this, you’ll be nodding in agreement with me.
He did alright. He was busy, neat on the ball, kind of dangerous in attack. He’s not Philippe Coutinho though, so y’know…He’s a cracking squad player to have. Of course he moved to Liverpool to get away from being a squad player. Sometimes James, my dear, you have to accept your hand in life. I, for example, am the greatest undiscovered footballer in the history of the world. I could open a tin of peas with my left foot. However I have accepted that I am now the greatest football writer of all time. I’m waiting for ‘the call’ any day now. Indeed.
So close. So close to a Man of the Match award from me. He got stuck into Manchester United like nobody else right from the kick-off. A sublime headbutt on Fellaini, disguised to look like a fair challenge was a particular highlight. Got stamped on by the same bumbling mop-headed neanderthal in the 1st half, but didn’t lose his head and just pushed him in the face, although he could only reach his chest. He’s clearly sleeping with Mark Clattenburg (or has a deep emotional connection to him) as he consistently talked himself out of what seemed to be an inevitable yellow card.
Everything was going perfectly, until THAT goal. He was marking Wayne Rooney, the same Wayne Rooney who swivelled to volley home the winner six yards out and completely unmarked. Lucas was 5 yards away, arching his back as the strike hit the back of the net. Goddammit.
Nah. Not for me. I’ve decided. I’ve made up my mind. I’m happy with it too. Adam Lallana will never be ‘good enough’ for Liverpool Football Club. God knows, he’s not the only one in that boat in this team, but I’ve reached my conclusion. He’s had enough of a run at it, particularly in this second season in the squad. He just doesn’t DO anything. Assists? Nah. Goals? Don’t be silly. He looks neat and tidy, for sure, but then so does my office desk, and I can assure you that I’m totally useless at my job. Appearances are one thing. Actions are another.
The best player on the park in red today, by quite a margin. The fact that he has to work with Lallana, Milner and Benteke up front must make him cry himself to sleep at night. Imagine if he had a fit Sturridge and Coutinho alongside him. I smile just thinking about it. Alas, we don’t have that now, and may never have it. He deserves quality alongside him. He’s the future this boy. The future is Firmino.
Fell asleep for the short corner routine. Took on Mata 1-on-1 with FIVE players in red in the box late on, and ran it out of play. Took a quick free-kick in a dangerous area just after we had brought on Benteke who has one sole purpose. It was not the most effective or impressive cameo’s from Jordon. Must do better.
He must be wondering what the hell is going on. Two appearances for Liverpool Football Club, both as an attacking last ditch throw of the dice. Seriously, his life must seem surreal right now. He didn’t believe his own agent when the call came from Anfield. He must be black and blue from pinching himself constantly.
Christian Benteke: He came on. He jumped a bit. He ran a bit. He earned obscene amounts of money. Ad infinitum.
Manager: Jurgen Klopp:
You got to feel some sympathy for Klopp. He’s inherited a clusterf*ck that has gotten significantly worse since his arrival. Sturridge is broken forever, and he knows it. All of his defenders have been broken at the same time. His most creative player is knackered. His Captain has a heel injury that won’t go away. The ex-captain and club legend called for a cup of tea and stayed for three weeks. Not exactly an ideal environment in which to operate. Poor Jurgen.
I hope he didn’t watch the Brendan Rodgers interview on ‘Goals on Sunday’ this morning. If he did, I wouldn’t be surprised to find a resignation letter on Ian Ayre’s desk tomorrow with a Jurgen Klopp shaped hole in his door. Our beloved club has been run like a poorly run co-operative. Shambles.
Note: If you enjoy the guff on this blog, you can find me on Twitter (@NiallHawthorne). I’m also regularly contributing to ByTheMinSport.com. Finally I’m a co-host for the best weekly Premier League Podcast in the whole world – @ByTheMinEPL Podcast, which can be found on the website. If you’ve read this far, pat yourself on the back.