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Gerrard Testimonial: Liverpool 2-0 Olympiacos

cardiffpete

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Apr 14, 2009
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SoueysTash said:
Indeed but he should have had more - that's the worry, in tight games where we'll only get a handful of chances those goals can make the difference between a mediocre and a good season

Not fair to judge based on just that though, as I said in my original post - he looks like a classy player with clever interplay. I've picked him for my FF team based on pre-season...
Aspas should be a very decent player for us. It's now 3 goals and 3 assists, of our 13 goals already scored in pre-season; which isn't exactly setting the world on-fire aka being admittedly achieved against (mostly) vastly inferior opposition. Still he does seems to be pretty productive for us from-the-off, and most past attacking signings haven't been instant successes at all, something which he does actually kind-of look like being ...although achieving it in a bit of an unorthodox way.

Aspas should (of course) have very much buried his chance in the opening 5 minutes Saturday and another one just before half-time on the swivel from Agger's knock-down, but here his composure and coolness on that chance was actually very nice to see. I wouldn't have him down as a natural finisher so much, but would like to think that he could net around 10+ goals, and also set up many others too, if used regularly

And there was so much more to like as well. Some great running into the left-channel in attack, an outrageous back-heel flick inside the box from Enrique's dink to set-up Allen, his similarly outrageous Cruyff-like turn inside the box and an almost wonder goal as a result, his instant pass on to Sterling (on about 40') for Gerrard's half-chance - when Gerrard drove-on from Lucas's great vertical ball out of defense. On Allen's goal, he was also in a great position to receive a wonderful (and driving) pass from Lucas on the break-down and then very much emulated the Oscar-Neymar move from the Confed Cup final when combining with Sterling to assist Allen's goal And last but not least his endless running and work-rate all game too.

Would I be semi-comfortable with Aspas at #9, were Suarez to depart? Not really, in the sense of Aspas not truly being a natural finisher plus him being not really physical either ...although he has very good work-rate, some finesse, decent guile and very good istincts. Of course, we'd have Sturridge too with his more natural finishing and with his raw pace and directness as well. I would still feel that it wouldn't really be enough though. However here (and hopefully, for me), we will this week quickly add Diego Costa to the mix as well. Then we'd have a player on-board with a very definite and a very strong physical presence plus one blessed with pace and power as well ...which we definitely lack at the moment.

I would have (by far) preferred Bony myself ...but Diego Costa should fill the void just fine too, in giving us a far more robust presence up-top, which we will surely need many times as well. Can't just rely on finesse and guile to break teams down ...we will surely also need a battering-ram from time-to-time - hence why (to me) Diego Costa makes a lot of sense.

Of course, if we do end-up keeping Suarez, then it's win-win ...as we'd then have 3 proven goal-scorers onboard to help him out - with all 3 being pretty decent on the ball as well. If we do end-up losing Suarez, then obviously we probably lose the potential to hit 80 goals in a season - so therefore the team (defensively) would need to be fairly tight throughout the campaign and we would need to spread the goals around a bit more. A front-line of Diego Costa - Sturridge - Aspas - either all three at once ...or a la ManU just last 20~30 minutes etc is not a weak one, by any means, and all 3 should also be players who would complement each other well ...with all 3 possessing qualities the other 2 may miss. Maybe no single 30-goal a-season striker there (unless Sturridge) but still pretty decent goal-output for sure.

Add-in Gerrard, Coutinho, Sterling, Hendo, Lucas, Glen and Enrique plus at times Ibe (note- I very deliberately choose to not mention Downing here) to the attacking mix as well (and all to varying degrees) and no reason at all that we cannot win quite a few games next term. Maybe not end-up routing teams 3-0 ~ 5-0 all that much anymore i.e. without Suarez ...but then again - there are no extra points on offer for beating teams by more than a single goal. ;-)
 


Chewbazza

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I think the stand-out stat from before we signed Aspas was that he was directly involved with more than 50% of the goals at Celta last season.

3 goals and 3 assists from 13 goals is nothing to be ashamed of to this point. He doesn't have the feel of a regular week in week out scorer, but I think he will get us some important goals this season, and while I don't hold much with direct comparisons, I could see him being held in the same esteem as Luis Garcia when his time with us comes to an end.