That was exhilarating. Sublime. Swashbuckling.Unbelievable. Fantastic. That’s it. I’ve run out of adjectives. Help me out with more in the comments! We scored five, but we could have scored SO many more! Suarez hitting the post, Hendo’s dink over Sczezny that went wide, Sterling missing two chances to beat the goalkeeper, Suarez’s free kick that caught everyone except an alert Sczezny out! That means 10. TEN. We could have scored TEN goals at Anfield against the league leaders!
This wasn’t just like the Liverpool of old. This was a brand new Liverpool with their own unique and devastating counter-attacking style. Credit goes to all the players, but more importantly, to the manager. All around the team, there are examples of his brilliant man management and coaching skills. Skrtel, Flanagan, Henderson, Gerrard, Sturridge, Coutinho, Suarez and Sterling have all benefited from it. I would not be able to fit our attacking fearsome foursome of Sturridge, Suarez, Sterling and Coutinho into the starting eleven even on Football Manager! Playing Coutinho in the number 10 yesterday and shifting Suarez out wide was a masterstroke. And oh, remember when we thought set pieces were useless for Liverpool? Good times, eh? With Gerrard, Coutinho and Suarez, our set piece delivery is now more lethal than ever!
As Brendan Rodgers said post-game, let’s not worry about a title challenge or the race for a Champions League spot. Let’s talk about winning as many points as we possibly can. We might have just dismantled a team that has been at the summit of the Premier League for almost all of this season, but it will count for nothing if we don’t get all three points against Fulham in midweek.
Based on this though, I can NOT wait to see Liverpool dismantling teams in the Champions League next season! Fingers crossed!
PS: Photo credit @MostarLFC
PPS: Also read this and my older posts on Rambling Reds.
Saturday’s early kickoff saw Liverpool DEMOLISH league leaders Arsenal at Anfield. The Reds opened the scoring with a Martin Skrtel brace followed by goals from Raheem Sterling and Daniel Sturridge before half time. The Reds added a fifth through Sterling before Arteta scored a penalty to give the beleaguered Gunners a consolation goal. Post match Paul was at Anfield to bring you the Uncensored Match Reaction Show…
Saturday Feb 8Posted by: jeroen adriaanse Adriaanse Comments Off
Liverpool won the Premier League title for the last time on 1 May 1990. Liverpool captain Alan Hansen lifted the Trophy after a 1-0 victory against Derby County. Steven Gerrard watched all the home games from The Kop that season. He said to himself that he will be lifting the Premier League Trophy in the future, as a tribute to his nephew Jon-Paul Gilhooley.
More than a year ago, 15 April 1989, the lives of Gilhooley’s and Gerrard’s family were shocked by a tragic accident; The Hillsborough disaster. Thousand fans were heading to the stadium of Sheffield Wednesday, to watch the semi-final of the FA Cup against Nottingham Forest. 96 supporters found the death that day. Jon-Paul Gilhooley also died; he was just 10 years old. Jon-Paul watched the match with his uncle, who managed to get a ticket at the last moment.
The youth academy of Liverpool FC scouted Steven Gerrard a few months later. Steven has the same passions for the club as his nephew so he decided to do everything what it takes to succeed at Anfield. He had the talent, but it was a hard task. His hard work paid of; He managed to get a contract in 1997.
Steven Gerrard made his debut on 29 November 1997 at Anfield against Blackburn Rovers. Gérard Houllier was the manager and decided to bring on Gerrard for Vegard Heggem a few minutes before the full-time whistle. Stevie G was 18 years old and very nervous. Passes didn’t reach his teammates but supporters that were in the stands.
He played even worse when he made his debut as a starter. He played as a right-back against David Ginola of Tottenham Hotspur, who was voted as ‘Player of the Season’ later on. Ginola danced with Gerrard that match and Steven said in an interview: ‘I hope that my parents are not at home tonight to watch ‘Match of the Day’.
Despite his debut our Skipper started to play better and better. He learned how to deal with the pressure and became one of the best English midfielders. On top of that he stayed loyal to his club. Clubs as Real Madrid and even Chelsea FC tried to sign him but the answer was always: ‘NO’. The reason why: ‘I have never said it before, but it’s true: I play for Jon-Paul’. He wrote in his autobiography.
He played 655 matches for Liverpool FC so far, and 108 times for England. He hopes that he can lead his country to a successful World-Cup as a captain. Jon-Paul Gilhooley and the Hillsborough-disaster runs like a common thread through his life. He donated 500.000 pound to a child hospital and he gave 96000 pound to the Hillsborough Families Support Group, a non-profit foundation who wants to reveal the truth, the real truth, about the disaster.
Steven Gerrard’s mission isn’t fully completed. He won the Champions league, the UEFA Cup, the FA Cup (2x) and the League Cup (3x). He still needs to win the Premier League title, so he can retire with a satisfied feeling.
Original article (in Dutch for VI) written by @tomvanhulsen
Written by @LFC_newsblogger
Tomorrow’s big game against Arsenal at Anfield will not be decided so much by Luis Suarez or Daniel Sturridge, or even by Mesut Ozil for Arsenal. It will be the game Raheem Sterling finally cements his status as a first-team player for Liverpool, or continues his role as mere squad player.
One can only look across to Arsene Wenger’s team to see similarities in Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. The young Englishman recently recovered from an injury that kept him out for around 4 months, and made his first start in Arsenal’s 2-0 win over Crystal Palace last weekend, in which Oxlade-Chamberlain bagged his side’s two goals. Having been deployed in central midfield alongside Mikel Arteta, the Ox went a long way in justifying his manager’s recent assertions that he could be the next Steven Gerrard – quite a claim for a player who is still seen as a winger rather than an actual central midfielder.
Oxlade-Chamberlain will most likely come off the bench on Saturday, in the hope of making a vital contribution midway through the second-half against tiring Liverpool legs, after temporarily stepping out of the shadows of Ozil and Santi Cazorla in his goalscoring return last week. Similarly, Sterling needs to step up to the plate in terms of goals getting and assists.
Liverpool’s young prodigy winger has already matched his goal tally from last season, but Brendan Rodgers will want him to get a couple more before the season’s end, or even simply double last season’s tally. This could be the game for Sterling to do it, and ensure he keeps his place for the season’s run-in.
Regardless of who plays at left-back for Arsenal, one of Kieran Gibbs or Nacho Monreal, Sterling will have the beating of either with his sheer pace. Whether Sterling starts or comes off the bench, his main role will be to stretch Arsenal both vertically and horizontally across the field. He will have to keep his starting position as wide as possible and receive the ball from there, ensuring that Arsenal’s defence and midfield will have to position themselves across the width of the pitch.
At Manchester City, we saw how Sterling’s diagonal runs infield, starting wide, meant he managed to lose his marker and provide an option for Philipp Coutinho or even Luis Suarez’s through balls. This time though, Sterling will have to stay wide and make runs on the outside of Arsenal’s left-back and around Arsenal’s defence, not inside runs in between the channels. This way, Arsenal’s defence and midfield will also have to sit slightly deeper to try to nullify Sterling’s pace and runs beyond their defence.
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Arsenal’s overall team shape will thus be pushed slightly deeper as well, giving Liverpool that bit more space to operate with in their attempts to play out from the back and find either Suarez or Daniel Sturridge. The more times Suarez and Sturridge has the ball, the higher the probability either will work their magic (with each other or individually) and fire shots at goal, hopefully finding the net more often than not.
In a game of such magnitude against two top-class teams, such tiny margins are the game deciders. And this could be the one decided by how Rodgers utilise Sterling.
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