An expression we all know and love. For various reasons of course. Some for the clear innuendo, others for the intended meaning: sic, the first sight of a Swallow in your garden does by no means, signify that summer is upon us. Same can be said for LFC this week.
In the same way, this can be applied to Liverpool’s recent performance against (and no disrespect to them) Championship side AFC Bournemouth. OK, the result was a resounding 1-3 victory in favour of the Reds. OK, the first score was the result of a 50+ pass move – a point that has been repeatedly made since. However, the fact remains, for all the plaudit’s, that Liverpool’s recent record is: P:4 L:1 D:2 W:1
Now far be it from me to piss on the parade but other than two positives, I don’t see much to be upbeat about. The performance was at best lukewarm and against a better side, like the one Liverpool host on Sunday, Arsenal, or the one poor Jamie Redknapp drew out of the hat on Wednesday night (much to the dismay of Graeme Souness) Chelsea, I fear the scoreline would probably have been a draw or at worst a reversal. That’s how frail I think the team is right now.
Mid-table or lower, I’m optimistic the team can get a result. However above that or shall we say top 6, the Reds are struggling big time. The two positives I refer to were the performances of Raheem Sterling and Adam Lallana. The latter I believe has been overlooked until recently and I hope this is now a sign that Brendan Rodgers is going to place more faith in the ex-Southampton attacker. Where Sterling is concerned I have to say this is a bold move by Rodgers and one that could arguably have been done some time ago.
Sterling is by no means a striker, but what is clear is that his efficiency in the position (3 goals in 16 appearances from 24 shots) is superior than that of Mario Balotelli (0 goals in 10 appearances from 30 shots). he’s also far more mobile that the strikers Liverpool have on the books with the exception of Daniel Sturridge. Common sense tells you he can’t be any worse than Balotelli – never mind the stats!
If Sterling continues in this vain, Rodgers may just have hit on something here. The 20 year-old would not be the first player to have moved from a wide or attacking midfield role into that of striker. The most notable of whom is Thierry Henry for example, and look what he done after that? Rodgers has a chance here. I get from Rodgers that he sees this and he was eager to talk up the youngster’s performance. Hence, he’ll start as a striker on Sunday I presume.
The decision to drop Simon Mignolet is a bad one in my opinion. We’ll see but I have had the opinion that in the absence of a better alternative – a description not befitting Brad Jones – then Mignolet should remain between the sticks. No matter how painful.
I think this is another example of one of the many tricks that Rodgers has missed. He brought Mignolet to the club under the pretence of “Competition” for Pepe Reina. OK, fair enough, but then when the other half of your competition leaves the club, wouldn’t it be a good idea to maintain the Competitive environment? I don’t recall Brad Pitt being mentioned in any of those discussions. So here we are, two and a half years down the line and quelle surprise, the goalie’s lost form and we only have a dud as replacement. Well done.
I’m of the impression now that Rodgers is out of his depth. Yesterday, I saw another LFC blog that suggested Rodgers should be replaced in January. A tad harsh IMHO. That will probably do more harm than good but at the end of the season would be the time to have a good look at LFC and the way forward.
I’m more than happy to be proved wrong. At this point Rodgers’ only hope rests with a 20 year-old who seems to have Don King as his representative and is thus stalling on a contract. There’s still more for Rodgers and the players to do in order to convince me things are improving. So as the title says: One Swallow doesn’t make a summer. Unless of course, if one swallow does make your summer, then you’ll be happy with Wednesday’s performance and you can lay back and smoke a cigarette!
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