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Friendly: LFC 0-1 Celtic

Row 33

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Jul 23, 2013
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slufsar said:
Our midfield is terrible. It was obvious the entire last season and it was obvious today. But, it seems like its not obvious to Rodgers.
Our midfield is basically occupied by three players who wont be dropped no matter how poor they play (Gerrard because he's a legend, Allen because Rodgers loves him and Lucas because he's undeservedly become a fan favourite)
Lucas is a "fans favourite" because he is excellent. Agree though about Gerrard and Rodgers' son.
 


mikeypezza

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Not one bit suprised by the result, after watching the previous game, what was they thinking a complete waste of time in every sense, they may have well played a sunday league side such was the gulf in class. Just the type of game you want with the league a week away, right?!

Then following it, was another, let's be honest aweful side. Now celtic was a more than decent side back in the day, adecade ago even. But the scottish league has never been this bad. I'd regard them now as a mid table championship side. The fact we conceded in both should have alarm bells ringing if they was not already. But atleast we played 'pretty'. Personally, having a team of 5 ft mobility players bombing forward like headless chickens with little apparent tactical formula and also leaving the defence wide open is not pretty. We should had played sides alot more to our level at this point to get the gears up. Allen showed how poor he was again, while Coutinho shown how brilliant he was. Not much learned from last season i feel. Tactical system leaves us far too exposed at the back.
 

mikeypezza

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slufsar said:
Our midfield is terrible. It was obvious the entire last season and it was obvious today. But, it seems like its not obvious to Rodgers.

Our midfield is basically occupied by three players who wont be dropped no matter how poor they play (Gerrard because he's a legend, Allen because Rodgers loves him and Lucas because he's undeservedly become a fan favourite)
Do not know where you got the conclusion gerrard is undroppable, this hasn't even been tested as gerrard is always the best player on the pitch, even on his worst days. Allen was eventually dropped last season because he was so aweful so again, not true. Lucas undeservedly? he was voted player of the season for a reason.
 

icemanwan

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Same old same old. Lacking the cutting edge up front, we even had a goal chalked off after it was given. Hats off to Celtic, they were always gonna be tough opposition as they are well into competitive matches especially in Europe while we are just about to kick off our campaign.

I know most of us wants to see the last of Stewart Downing, but today he worked his socks off and had some of the chances (and shots at goal) he created been put away, easily had won this game. Whether he is going or not, does not deserve some of the harsh criticism laid on here, kudos for him trying and deservedly the red shirt he puts on.

Thought SG not playing well today and it reflects on the team. Lucas was his old self disrupting Celtic's play before they become dangerous. Toure had a solid display at the back, even contributed up front and had a goal chalked off. Lots of clear cut chances, Jones thru with just keeper to beat, Sturridge missing the target after a good thru ball by Coutinho.

Losing this match will bring our feet back down after all the friendly wins, this was definitely one of the scenarios that we will be facing where teams score early and park their "bus" in front of goal. We must learn to take our chances or end up losing winnable matches.
 



EdWood

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slufsar said:
Our midfield is terrible. It was obvious the entire last season and it was obvious today. But, it seems like its not obvious to Rodgers.

Our midfield is basically occupied by three players who wont be dropped no matter how poor they play (Gerrard because he's a legend, Allen because Rodgers loves him and Lucas because he's undeservedly become a fan favourite)
He can't afford to drop Lucas. mate. because he's the only holding player in the first team squad. Believe me, if he wasn't in the team, things would be even worse! :rolleyes:
 

rupzzz

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Its crazy how quicky a loss changes the mood on the forum.

As far as I can tell, having only watched the highlights, we lost the game from a silly defensive error (Wisdom), but were solid other than that defensively. We created a few chances but weren't incisive enough.

Not overly concerned at this stage...but still want a signing or two in the next few weeks
 
R

RedRiot

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rupzzz said:
Its crazy how quicky a loss changes the mood on the forum.

As far as I can tell, having only watched the highlights, we lost the game from a silly defensive error (Wisdom), but were solid other than that defensively. We created a few chances but weren't incisive enough.

Not overly concerned at this stage...but still want a signing or two in the next few weeks
I think at this point people are trying to see who can overreact the most. Your impression is accurate. We were the better team. We didn't score. If it was a meaningful match you might understand the worries about "same old, same old" but we started a different FW in each half (one who hasn't played a minute this preseason) and played a 19-year old in the center of defense (from whose mistake we lost).
 

lfc.8

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The performance itself is not the biggest concern. It is the lack of quality throughout the squad. And this hasn't changed. The season starts in a weeks time, while the transfer window closes in a few weeks time.

We've not signed one player who really improves the starting eleven. We were 7th last season. This will be the fourth season in a row with no champions league. That's beyond poor. There's every reason to be concerned. We've done almost nothing to suggest we'll make the top four this season. I have hope, but that's not always enough.
 

104TOSH

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After Celtic scored we had a period of play were we saw the Celtic keeper pull off some fine saves, at this point I thought we'd score, alas, it wasn't to be! Thought Downing really should have scored, seemed to be caught in two minds and the chance went begging. So it was a mixture of good keeping and poor finishing which deprived us of a win today, and this has been a regular feature of our play over the last two seasons. Frustrating when it happens!

However it was a friendly on the road to our opening match against rugby side Stoke City.

Game 1 against Stoke is when it really matters!
 



Bleech

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rupzzz said:
Its crazy how quicky a loss changes the mood on the forum.

As far as I can tell, having only watched the highlights, we lost the game from a silly defensive error (Wisdom)
...or Downing depending on which way you look at it
 

jabu

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always fun to come on here after a loss, dont matter its preseason, the schitzo reactions are all the same!!!
 

mattyhurst

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Explain as I watched the game what did Allen exactly do wrong? Same goes for Henderson and Lucas really, I didn't really see any fault by them cost Liverpool or distribute the play in fact in the first half Allen and Coutinho connected well.

We lost because of the finishing product, that is as much down to Steven Gerrard as it is to Joe Allen and as much down to Lucas as it is down to Coutinho.

Toure, Sturridge and Ibe and perhaps Mingolet came out of this game well the rest were so so...and some were poor though the two that really let the side down today and they may well next week are Sterling and Suarez.
 

A True Red From NZ

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Only watched the highlights but it seemed as if we created plenty of decent chances.
Sturridge seemed to change the game completely, lots of attacking threat from him and was good to see him create chances out of nothing, or have the balls to try something different. Daniel and Coutinho link up very well, good signs for the upcoming season.
Downing appeared to play quite well in the final third, Coutinho missed a wonderful chance to level the scores.
Toure meanwhile also had that good goal which was ruled out for offside.

Personally, I thought it was a fine performance from us, although I haven't seen the majority of the game.
Being more clinical is clearly the issue surrounding the squad, but can't understand all the doom and gloom to be perfectly honest.

Bring on Stoke
 
R

RedRiot

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Yeah, I thought Allen and Lucas were generally good to great, as was Henderson. Thought Gerrard looked jaded throughout the match and even a bit old. He just wasn't moving much without the ball. In terms of disappointing performances, his would go to the top for me. Aspas wasn't very good but he also only had a half.
 



mattyhurst

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RedRiot said:
Yeah, I thought Allen and Lucas were generally good to great, as was Henderson. Thought Gerrard looked jaded throughout the match and even a bit old. He just wasn't moving much without the ball. In terms of disappointing performances, his would go to the top for me. Aspas wasn't very good but he also only had a half.
Gerrard reminded me of how he looked in the first 2 months of last season, I thought that was down to the change in system, I still think that midweek game and travel was a factor if were honest it's been rarely done for 3 seasons, Gerrard I think only went on one trip (Maybe 2) last season this is also a preseason. The Celtic youngsters are probably the Celtic squad after all don't they have that U21 rule up there still?

Throw into the fact that Celtic started their season about 3 weeks you would expect them to be fitter and the more I reflect the more I see the whole picture, I guess it's why I avoided the post match thread for 2 hours after most draws/losses last season.

I also wouldn't say they were great but they were improved on last season and that goes for the entire pre season with Lucas and Allen and Henderson (who looks like he has been in the gym).

Aspas did disappoint me somewhat, the jury is out, though I feel he will come good in many games as the Premier League is developing into more of a technical league, we bang on about the Stokes but their are probably 3 or 4 teams that will play like that, Hull replace Reading, Moyes won't be able to do what he did at Everton and Everton now have Martinez. Westham will still play that way and Cardiff may though I've seen them play different ways but bar them who else?
 

JustHitMyHead

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Hmm... I think with some adjustment to the team selection we would have done much better. Downing can't be starting... a lot of good work but like Borini, something seems to always go wrong with the end product.

He's like a black hole that will take a good attacking play and somehow end up with little or no result. Aspas should play alongside Sturridge, or if Sturridge is unavailable, alongside Ibe and Sterling. Somehow the line up has to be adjusted when Sturridge is out to give more attacking impetus than Allen or Henderson or Downing. It could mean playing Alberto... I don't know.

I just feel Henderson was a pointless substitution if we were really playing a real competitive match. And we can't be playing too many of the "industrious" type but more of the "dangerous" type in our attacking 4.
 

lfc.eddie

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rupzzz said:
Its crazy how quicky a loss changes the mood on the forum.

As far as I can tell, having only watched the highlights, we lost the game from a silly defensive error (Wisdom), but were solid other than that defensively. We created a few chances but weren't incisive enough.

Not overly concerned at this stage...but still want a signing or two in the next few weeks
I don't think the mood has changed. A lot of people that is not happy with the dealings and squad is still not happy with the transfer dealings and first team players. The loss is not to Real Madrid that smashed 3 over Inter, it was against Celtic reserves. If we expect to convince our star players and other star players to have a look at us, we should be doing better. I would rather see 3 - 3 or 3-2 loss than 1-0 loss.

Our set piece and cross defending is still all over the place if you watched the full game yesterday. Our midfield looked light weight against Celtic. They were physical and they were organised. This is a team Neil Lennon described as their Development Squad, played against our first team, bar Agger and maybe Sturridge.

We should be worried as we have not bought anyone that we kept at Melwood. We need someone who can lead the line if Suarez starts to give us a bit of a headache with loss of form and/or Sturridge picks up a knock. Coutinho is the only one creating and pulling the strings, which should not be. He is only 20 and he will be marked off in a game this coming season. The Prem League teams may not know him last season, this is a completely different season, others would have taken notice by now.

I am pretty sure Rodgers would be as worried as some of us with players not getting themselves up to speed. And with all our slagging off, Downing did much better than some who had been showered with praises.
 

ajc56

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the hysteria over this is ridiculous. Man united has lost to much worse teams this preseason, everyone needs to just relax. If you want to see a team play with more passion tune in next week when the result is more important than getting minutes and making it through without an injury.
OH MY GOD WE LOST A FRIENDLY! ABANDON SHIP!
 

OhYaBeauty

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Thoughts on our final preseason friendly vs Celtic:

Tactical Notes



The first half formation was a 4-2-1-3 again with Coutinho, Aspas and Downing ahead of Allen ahead of Lucas and Gerrard. I think I mentioned in the Valerenga or the Olympiakos thread that this isn't really a very tactically sound formation. There's too much space in the deep playmaking areas. I much prefer the slightly unorthodox formation we switched to in the last thirty minutes, a 4-2-3-1 with Henderson out left and Coutinho central. It closes up space in deep midfield and increases playmaking for the main striker with neat play between the three behind him.

The 4-2-3-1 is far more balanced, it allows our best creator to create far more (as seen in the second half) and it gives us far more solidity down the wings with players like Henderson or even Downing or Ibe. The three behind the striker also close down space far more than just Joe Allen alone with the three ahead of him.

Once again we stuck to the Gerrard-Lucas-Allen threesome in midfield, which forces Coutinho to the left wing. I'm personally not a fan of this set up because to me, Allen doesn't bring anything special to that central attacking midfield role that Coutinho couldn't bring himself. Further, fewer sights of the ball on the wing for Coutinho means that he doesn't get as many chances to work his magic.

Its worth noting that Gerrard didn't go forward very often in this match. Normally he finds time for forward forays (a little bit of alliterative fun) but he mostly sat deep by the central defenders and picked up the ball before he moved it forward with diagonal passes. We were at our best when he was doing this. Pains me to say this as I very much enjoy his forward runs to add quality, but his staying deep and shifting the ball wide allowed the fullbacks to attack, which was a source of real creativity for us today. Johnson in particular looked good up the right hand side.

Defensively, we weren't that solid. Against a large target man type forward, it doesn't matter how much you pull fullbacks or midfielders back to help; it really is an isolated duel between the forward and the central defenders. On several occasions today, Wisdom and Toure lost that duel. Theoretically, both should be very good against a target man; they're both big physical players. However, Balde clearly targeted Wisdom and moved to the left so as to isolate him. There, Toure's experience was unable to help out while Wisdom's lack thereof led to him mistiming tackles when he should have simply kept pace with the forward, showing him wide.

From a tactical perspective, this isn't a huge worry; we can just play Agger and Toure against physical center forwards. Agger is smart enough positioning wise and Toure has the experience. However, I'd still like to see us bring in another central defender to supersede Toure and become first choice. Toure's got the leadership and organization down, but he's a little bit past it and we need somebody with more legs to play alongside Agger(who can do the organizing himself) regularly if we're going to compete for the top four. I think we all know who that is….

Player Notes

Andre Wisdom looked good at times but showed his lack of top level experience several times when dealing with a player who made him look small. Since he couldn't simply outrun and outmuscle Balde, he tried to force tackles that weren't on, one of which lead to the forward's goal. He needs to learn to sit back and force the player away from dangerous positions instead of going in for a tackle when its not on. I hope Toure will be mentoring him as he has the physical skills, but lacks experience against niche forwards (your giants or speed merchants). I really like the aerial threat that Toure adds as well.

Glen Johnson seemed to be back to his attacking best with a couple of very good runs forward and a couple of nice through balls, one of which almost provided Coutinho with a goal. He needs to keep this up throughout the season because we will need his presence on the right wing; whoever we play there will most likely not be naturally right sided and his attacking brings width and an alternative pass. Jose Enrique on the other hand has little to no ability going forward; when Michael Owen comments on how poor your crossing is while he's commentating you know its plain to see. What's more, I think his forceful balls into the center of the pitch are often a bit unintelligent and leave the receiving player in a bad place.

Iago Aspas disappointed me a fair bit with how lightweight he was. Multiple times he lost the ball due to a simple nudge from the central defenders. He's probably not going to be good enough to play as a center forward for us, but as I discussed at the midweek, he's also a completely unknown quantity on the wing. I would have hoped to have this sorted by now. I think he also proved today that he should not be a definite starter; I've seen several on TIA saying Suarez, Coutinho, Sturridge and Aspas is a very good front line but I'm not sure how Aspas will be against better competition, much less how he'll do on the wing. Watch this space. Downing had a good first half, generally doing what we'd expect of him, playing through balls, crossing and shooting well. I would be a bit hesitant to sell him at the moment due to what I perceive as a lack of legitimate options on the right wing. Aspas is still an unknown quantity and who knows what's going to happen with Suarez, who I perceive to be Rodgers' first choice right forward. I still want Downing out, but I'd be careful about selling him at the moment.

Lucas had good timing on a lot of tackles and won the ball well for us but also conceded a few fouls. Average day for the Brazilian, really. Stevie had great passing again in the deeper role but I'm sad that it takes a bit of the offensive side of his game away.

With such an amazing ability to find players ahead of him with miraculous through balls, Coutinho really should be playing centrally. His ball to Aspas right before half time was magnificent. In addition to my already noted problem with him playing wide (that he doesn't get enough touches) it seems that when he does get the ball, he tries to do too much to get himself into the box with it. Similar criticisms have been levelled at Suarez; he tries to beat one too many player, often losing the ball in the process. He's great at dribbling, but in the absence of other legitimate options up front he tries to do too much. If he was deeper with Suarez and Sturridge ahead of him, his dribbles would undoubtedly work as he'd have less attention on him. As it was with just Aspas, he gave the ball away a few times right on the edge of the area.

Sturridge was remarkably sharp in his first game back from injury. He had several good plays in link up and had good movement, which led to several goal scoring chances. I think he might even be ready in time for Stoke. Ibe had a good cameo as well, looking very dangerous and putting a few shots and crosses in.

Adversity

This was our first opposition of any real quality so far in preseason and it was also the first time we were behind (also just the second time we were scored upon). As such it was really the first time we've faced any sort of adversity this season. When your team's down a goal, you expect them to work twice as hard in order to equalize. The effort we saw in the second half versus Celtic was okay, but not as much as we'd like to see if we're chasing a game.

Some of it might be down to the lack of Luis Suarez. We lack a lot of the mental toughness of better teams and players like Suarez go mental trying to equalize late in games. Although players like Coutinho, Sturridge, and Gerrard have the class to bring us back into the game, without Suarez we lack the sort of raw passion we'd need to get back into games. Hopefully we find a better way to fight back into games.

The Result vs. The Performance

The performance was certainly deserving of a better result than came our way. Sturridge had several good chances to score, as did Downing and Coutinho. We created chances, we simply didn't finish them, as it was in the 2011-2012 season.

Last season we were generally better about winning games that we deserved to win, and I hope this isn't a sign of things to come that we can do so well in a match and not bury our chances.

Downing

So Karl says he's off to West Ham and everyone jumps on it (looking at you Sky, BBC, and Echo) and we all get excited. Myself included, really, as I have generally thought that he's not good enough for us and his attitude is toxic. But his performances in the past two friendlies (Valerenga and Celtic) have been very good. He's done well in link up, he's crossing, playing through balls and shooting well.

So what do we do? Its pretty clear that despite the improvement he's still not going to be a ten goal player and I highly doubt he'll pick up ten assists, either. I also still have my worries that he'll continue to have a poor attitude in the dressing room. I still hold a grudge because of the interview he gave in October and the poor form and attitude he displayed in his first 18 months here.

But we don't have a better option. I believe Suarez is Rodgers' first choice right forward, as he clearly prefers Coutinho on the left and Allen or Henderson centrally. Sturridge seems all but certain to start up top. So we have a better option in Suarez, if he stays. But that's all but certain and Aspas is still a completely unknown quantity on the wing. Sterling and Ibe are promising but not good enough to start for large parts of the season.

His position is clearly one that could easily be improved upon, but Rodgers and FSG seem content to keep him around and not buy a top class replacement (Lamela, Griezman, Muniain, Costa, Muriel). I'm none to impressed by that decision but I could get used to it if Downing continues to display a bit of cajones.
 



grooveshark

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Might be a bit off topic, but i seriously hope that in coming seasons we get better opponents especially in the final three or four games of pre season.

Fitness may be important on the first leg of the tour, but one would love to see more challenging opponents and intensity crancked up as the start of the season nears.

If Everton can play the likes of Juve, Real and Valencia, City playing Sunderland, Bayern, Arsenal, Milan, Chelsea playing Real, Inter, Roma, Milan, and Arsenal playing Napoli, Galatasaray, and City on top of a few good japanese sides, United two good japanese sides, Sevilla.

Overall, it has been a good pre season, players have looked good, but i hope that there will be teams in future that offer more resistance.

As for the game, thought the team played well just couldnt get the ball in the net. Either way, shouldnt be losing to Celtic's reserves.
 

grooveshark

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Jugger said:
Well considering if the season had started after Sturridge and Coutinho joined (2nd half of the season) we would have been in the Top 4 with points earned, yes. Now we've got a better keeper and a better CB we should in theory concede less giving us even more points.




I'd rather a 4231 for the exact reason you gave but BR has set up 433 the past 2 matches and you know how you line-up on the last pre-season game is 99% of the time how you will start the season.



Fair enough, world would be a boring place if we all shared the same views!

See first response for Top 4 argument. WIth Sturridge, Suarez and Coutinho all in the same team anything is possible.

Sturridge scored 10 goals in the 2nd half of the season whilst he was injured frequently. Another 5+ goals at least would have been scored if he played another half a season. If Suarez stayed out of trouble you could probably have added another couple to his tally of 23. Not so unthinkable now, no? Obviously with Suarez being out until Oct 20+ goals may be unlikely this season.

How you believe our squad isn't much better than last season I'll never know.

I wholeheartedly agree about needing to spend big money before the window closes though, anything less than 2 Starting XI signings minimum and I'll be so frustrated. I don't want to have a team thats just about good enough for Top 4, I want one that completely deserves to be Top 4. This will obv improve our squad even further.
the only team that didnt collect more points after the January window closed in the top 7 was Everton who had two points fewer.

Everyone else collected more points, you could check it out. It is a myth, and a rather strange one that LFC had top 4 form at the back end of last season.

This team still lacks in quality, and i honestly believe that tougher fixtures in pre season would have been better because they would have exposed those frailties better.

Some hereon think that the additions of Aspas, Mignolet, Toure, Alberto put this team amongst the top 4. It doesnt.

The only player that looks like he has the quality needed in the final third is Coutinho, if he should get injured, you have the same hopeless possession stats game with no results.
 



auzziez

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lfc.8 said:
Ignore this performance fine, but just look at the starting eleven and squad in general. There's a lack of quality throughout. We're nowhere near good enough to get back into the top four.
As Matt said earlier, its the same as it was last season. the same problems still persist. and thats nothing new to us..... unfortunately.
 

costared

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EXCELLENT piece OYB.

Don't agree totally with Lucas rating though.Apart from giving away a lot of free kicks ( he often does it deliberately so his lack of pace is not exposed) his positioning /discipline defensively is not great. A classic was yesterday.Glen was jockeying their winger,Lucas was marking a guy just outside the ".D". Lucas then rushed into a position beside Glenn so the winger simply passed to the guy that had been left unmarked who got in a decent strike on target.
As you say Downing has done better lately but he will still get lost against the better teams, always has done, even at Villa.
I to am concerned that we may be sliding back to a 2011/12 situation as Rogers does not seem to see the problems. We have needed a new CB, LB and DM since last season and with the Suarez situation up in the air we also need a new forward. Other clubs have found players to fit these roles and often at sensible prices.
There is still time to get it right ( Sissokho looks likely to sign) but the longer it goes on the less likely the chance of doing so.
 

shachart

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SoueysTash said:
Yeh we should have kept the £35m man for those 3 or 4 games a (pre)season where he could have shone...
andy was never a 35m man, and i think he would have been the first to admit it. he is worth 16M ( because that is what west ham paid ), and for that money we should have kept him, and maybe offload Borini instead. fact is we can't even buy a replacement for Andy, so why sell the one you've got.

be honest, suarez and sturridge are first 2 option in attack. who whould you rather be a 3rd option- andy, aspas or borini ?
 

shachart

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LiVeRp0oL89 said:
Mate its got fuck all to do with Andy being here, annoys me when people say that. Its about ridding ourselves of this mentality where we panic in front of goal when we're a goal down. If we actually spend on a couple of quality players this summer, we'll have a better chance of winning games like this and shaking off this mentality.
Problem is, we can't buy top quality players. ffs, we can barely hold the few top quality players we have.
 

jerusalemred

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rab said:
It's a pre-season game son, get a grip. Most teams results in pre-season aren't a true reflection of the season ahead.
you said most, well thats not true. so I dont need to buy into your false notion that pre-season aren't accurate.

This is a real concern not so much on effort which even downing was really showing effort, but this is the reality of playing against a celtic youth reserves and clearly not having enough attacking quality to even convert a goal.

Brendan shouldnt be let off too as he was sub par and contributed to the lacklustre formation and personnel. His subs on hendo on the left wing showed either how bad or thin our squad is that we have no other players to convert crosses or penetration. His several corner kicks are so attrocious. he kept whipping it into the keeper area thinking he can score there, twice I've counted. And most of the players were waiting on the far end. What kind of set piece training are we having here. I am truly worried about rodgers coaching ability and discipline from players to execute it.

He should stop wasting time on suarez apologies and start the stoke match preparation in ernest or else another 6th position come end season I am sure we all know how ruthless henry is.