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Indonesia XI - Pre-Season Friendly - Sat 20th July 14.30 KO BST



MarlboroMan

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Sterling is being given the star treatment by the crowd, a lot of ohhhs and ahhhhhs whenever he's on the ball.
 

MarlboroMan

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Ah our dear friend, the crossbar, is back for pre-season along with the players. That's twice we have hit the crossbar, Alberto and now Raheem.
 



LiVeRp0oL89

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Mascot88 said:
Has Kelly grown a foot? He's fucking massive.
Don't forget he's going for the Andy Carroll look. Height is just as important as hairstyle ;)
 

hoosierred

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Sterling has been electric (and wasteful) since he came on.
 

RichLFC

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He's got a bit to go sterling but really hope he can back up a proper first teamer next season. Potentially, he has the lot. Is why I hate seeing minutes wasted on mediocrity
 

tesh

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We seem a bit predictable and are struggling to break them down.

Pitch isn't helping.


Great run and ball!

Ibe?
 



mattyhurst

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RichLFC said:
He's got a bit to go sterling but really hope he can back up a proper first teamer next season. Potentially, he has the lot. Is why I hate seeing minutes wasted on mediocrity
Have to agree, I guess Downing is in the plans, I wish he wasn't mind with Ibe and sterling around a player for now who plays in the Downing position would make us dangerous now with options on the bench, with a CB that would improve us a lot.
 

gasband

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Great pace by Ibe and Assaidi did the right thing to push it to the right for a simple goal.
 

RichLFC

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Easy second, overdue a bit but feel sterling will offer a lot more than SD as a squad player next season anyway. Much more of a threat in the final 3rd and pace does stretch teams
 



gasband

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Both Ibe and Sterling have the same commodity, speed. And the one who learns how to control their output and end product will be the one who will be better. Lets hope its both of them.
 

lfc.eddie

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Mascot88 said:
Has Kelly grown a foot? He's fucking massive.
You are watching him playing against Indonesians, with average height of 5'4". If you are 5'6" you are considered tall. Anything above 5'8" looked at as tower of a man. Kelly is about 6'3" mate.... playing in Indonesia surely make him looked like he has grown a foot. :lol:
 

MarlboroMan

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SirBillShankly said:
I can see Ibe being better than Sterling eventually.

Well done lads.
Me 2. He looks stronger and quicker over the first 5 yards. Ibe looks more of a forward while Sterling looks more like a winger.
 



RichLFC

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2-0 ft

Pretty boring. Most encouraging thing is sterling scoring in both pre season games so far. Looks fresh and hope this season he gets time to play in maybe a more appropriate fashion, not having to make up too much for the inadequacies of others

One or two of the usual suspects were just a bit frustrating. Think Toure has added something to our defence though again set pieces at both ends are not stellar

Pitch though doesn't suit the way we play and not sure about goals out of Sturridge and Suarez, Coutinho and sterling may chip in but not sure about the others yet. Tough maybe Aspas will help out when he gets going

Need a bit more though come the start of the season one suspects.
 

MarlboroMan

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mattyhurst said:
Four positives...

A win
A clean sheet
Conditioning
And shirt sales
Negatives

Only 2-0 win, Arsenal got 7
Uninspiring performance
Downing is still around
Assaidi played.
Aspas missed an open goal
 

gingerbread

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I think Sterling got more paces and may have better off-the-ball movement, but Ibe seems to have better football brain.

Too early to judge btw, just from 2 pre-season matches
 

LFC-Orlando

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Judging just the 1st half, which might have been the closest to our starting 11....

My concern now is whether the changes and the continued re-building will have an adverse impact on our results. I'm all for "upgrading" each position that needs it, but I hope we don't end up starting the season worse than last.

3 of the top 4 messed with their management this season and we hope we'll capitalize on that. What would be worse is if the many changes we are making, will impact us worse.
 

OhYaBeauty

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Thoughts on our second preseason friendly:

Tactical setup



Last week I remarked on the apparent shift from the 4-2-1-3 that Rodgers preferred last season with Gerrard and Lucas playing deep to the 4-1-2-3 with just one holding midfielder and two box-to-box players ahead of him. Its important to note that the mitigating factors for using the 1-2 midfield were mostly removed; we started with Gerrard and Lucas on the pitch but still operated with Gerrard more forward of Lucas than we did last season. Ultimately, it fell somewhere between a 1-2 and a 2-1, but that clearly shows a tactical shift. We might see more of it this season.

In attacking midfield, I would argue that the experiment with playing Luis Alberto with Coutinho failed. Both had moments of individual brilliance, but neither really played well with the other. They seemed to be out of sync, and often occupied the same positions at the same time, which is not what they should be doing. Rather, they should be interchanging fluidly, switching spots but never being in the same place.

Second half tactics were clearly a bit scatterbrained in an attempt to get a bunch of young talent on the pitch at the same time. Interestingly, this resulted in a shift back to the 4-2-3-1, which, near as I can tell most frequently had Sterling left, Ibe center, and Assaidi left. I would originally have thought that three wingers wouldn't have been a good choice, but Ibe played very well as a number ten and they interchanged very well.

Rustiness

It is early preseason and the match was held in the sweltering heat of Indonesia. However, I felt that several first teamers looked far rustier than they should have or at least rustier than they looked against Preston. Notables were Gerrard, Johnson, Enrique, Coutinho, and Downing. Gerrard's long passing seemed to be lacking on many occasions, and his defensive positioning was anything but solid. Johnson didn’t seem quite as comfortable with the ball at his feet as we've gotten used to, and Enrique was the same, with lots erratic movements thrown in. Coutinho looked classy as always, but his passes didn't come off all that often. Downing clearly needs replacing; despite running about well, he still has a poor touch.

Henderson, Allen, and Agger, however all looked quite sharp. The former two passing very well in their portion of the match, the latter being very solid in defense as well as passing well and making a few good forward runs.

Aspas/Borini

The new number 9 had a bit of a rough outing, being left isolated by his teammates frequently and lacking for ideas a bit when he did get the ball. Service was hard to find for the little lad, with most balls coming in at a strange angle or height, which led to poor first touches and turnovers. Although this is ultimately not his fault, it does show [for me] that he doesn’t have the skills to play as a lone central striker. Simply put, he's not good enough to play as a striker on his own; to do so he needs to either be lethal or create more goals.

Bearing in mind that its only preseason and there's likely more in his locker, I still think he's more suited to the flanks. His work rate will make up for Downing being out of the team, and he won't be depended on to score and create the way Suarez and Sturridge are.

Borini ultimately earns the same marks as Aspas in my book for this match. He's not got the finishing instinct at the moment to play as a lone striker, but he does seem to have very intelligent movement, good link up play, and a solid work rate. He too will be best used as a wide forward or sub forward this season but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him play as a center forward more often than Aspas.

Fringe Player Performance

Assaidi, Kelly, and Skrtel all had good runouts in the last half hour. I'm still confused by the enigma that is Assaidi; he seems to have all the skills to make it here. He's got great ball skills, a low center of gravity to avoid being knocked off the ball, and his link up play and crossing is good. I guess I'll never understand it but he was cheap, so I'm not really that bothered if Rodgers doesn't want him. His assist to Sterling was the sort of unselfish, team football that I admire. He could easily have finished it, but he went with the slightly higher probability and it resulted in a tap in for Sterling.

Kelly got the last thirty minutes at right fullback. I think he's being played as a fullback while he gains fitness so that he's not called on as much. He was pretty much par for the course today, not being troubled much and not adding much either.

Skrtel wasn't called on often but was relatively solid when needed. I did notice that he clearly does not command the back line (which I'll grant you is less experienced) even close to as well as Agger does. I start to wonder if the reason Rodgers apparently doesn't want him is more because of his lack of leadership qualities both on the pitch and in the dressing room than because of his lack of ability.

Youngsters

Once again, plenty of young players got their chance to shine in the first team. Alberto and Coutinho started, while Robinson got a half and Wisdom, Ibe, and Sterling all played for a half hour.

My pick of the youngsters would have to be Robinson. He looked lively up the left flank, was solid in defense, and even had a blistering long range drive at goal. I'll be interested to see if he's given a chance this season. I thought at the beginning of last season that he was ready to be Enrique's backup but Rodgers apparently disagreed. A few more solid preseason performances might result in him sticking around and getting good game time.

Sterling was lively down the left and center. He scored a tap in from unselfish play by Assaidi, but that wasn't really the highlight of his night. He tormented the right side of Indonesia's defense and had two good efforts just miss. One a half volley off of an Assaidi cross that struck the crossbar; the other, a volley lobbed forward by Henderson that just missed the near top corner. Promising performance that shows that he may have been working on his finishing.

Now for Ibe, Rodgers' shoot on sight starlet. He lined up in a bit of an unfamiliar role and had very good link up play. His "assist assist" to Assaidi was a good little pass and his drive at goal was solid. Its not hard to see that he models his game off of Cristiano Ronaldo, and I'd expect to see a good bit of him this season if he keeps up these types of performances.

Wisdom had an uneventful run-out and was solid when he needed to be. I'm not sure what his future contains this season. He seems to be readying himself for a shift to central defense, but I think Kelly should be moved there and he should play another season as our back up right fullback. Alternatively, he could go on loan. Wherever he goes though, I think he'll be successful.

Miscellaneous

Why does Downing still take corners for us? Besides being left footed, he brings nothing with set piece delivery. His floated balls into the center only find the center of the box about half the time, and even when they do they've got no pace on them and are easily cleared. Coutinho and Gerrard to take corners please, with Henderson next in line.

Mignolet was very good today, wtih a couple of good saves, a good clearance on a corner, and an instance where he came out to the edge of his box to take the ball off a winger down Indonesia's right. I'm still unsure of whether he's an upgrade on Pepe, but he's been as good as he can be so far against limited competition.
 



DeathOrGlory

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MarlboroMan said:
Negatives

Only 2-0 win, Arsenal got 7
Uninspiring performance
Downing is still around
Assaidi played.
Aspas missed an open goal
Please just feck off.

It's a friendly, unless a player got injured their ain't any negatives.
 

mattyhurst

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MarlboroMan said:
Negatives

Only 2-0 win, Arsenal got 7
Uninspiring performance
Downing is still around
Assaidi played.
Really does it matter how many Arsenal got, a win is a win is a win, it's the second game of pre season and Downing was around regardless. And Assaidi's fitness is good to keep up if we are looking to get rid.

As for Aspas it's the second game of pre season, come back when he misses 4 or 5 sitters by November, He again like Borini got in the position to miss, he actually created that and missed it.

Rather create chances and miss them than never create them at all, Sterling could have Borini through but I'm going complain in pre season.
 

redbj

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DeathOrGlory said:
Please just feck off.

It's a friendly, unless a player got injured their ain't any negatives.
Are you for real?

Of course per season is mainly conditioning, but if the aim was to purely avoid injuries, then no club anywhere at any level would ever play a pre season friendly.
 

Hinold_Arnold

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Mignolet is very comfortable with the ball and has some decent distribution in this friendly, which is kind of unexpected for me. I don't know if he has already shown this aspect of football during his time in Sunderland, but it is a great plus for me.
 

Anthony

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Good runout, tough conditions. Ibe, Couti, Sterling all looked lively. Great to see Stevie back. Happy just to watch footy and see my team play.

All positive for me :)