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Liverpool v Anzhi Makhachkala 25th Oct 20.05

Anfield rd Dreamer

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Our senior players should be capable of playing twice a week. Why else do we crave a return to Champions League? So that we can field our B-team in one of our almost-every-week-two-games? Nah.

If you look around all the participants in Champions League this season, they're playing to full strength - or close to it - in both games. It does require some depth to rotate the key players, but many are expected to play twice. it should be no different at Liverpool.

It may be the Europa League, but there's hunger in our players and fans, and we do need to perform here. It'll give us some amazing matches if we make it to the play-offs, where we'll be joined by the 3rds from Champions League.

The problem isn't that Suarez can't play twice a week. The problem is that he has no backup, so if he is unlucky, we are in serious trouble. Still, I'm sure if you ask Suarez, he'd tell you he definetely wants to play. He's just the kind of character that wants to play every single match.
Very good point. And as you say the problem isnt playing its what do we do if we lose players. Everybody but Suarez has adequate back up. Suarez could pick up a virus or food poisoning or drop an aftershave bottle on his foot or pull a hamstring in training.... We could lose Suarez a hundred different ways not involving this match, and we would be in trouble. Just maybe playing against the odds to play him too though. As for everywhere else on the pitch I do have faith in our depth and although wont be ideal if we pick up injuries I think we will cope.
 


Anfield rd Dreamer

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I agree - we don't have the squad to compete in this competition as well.

I'd rather we just fuck it off and concentrate on the league and domestic cups.
Spurs fucked it off last year and concentrated on the league. They actually finished 4th, although they were challenging for the title when still in Europe, it didnt do them any good though making that choice.

Id prefer to do well in Europe and finish 6th in league though than do terrible in Europe and finish in 5th.
 

DeathOrGlory

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Spurs fucked it off last year and concentrated on the league. They actually finished 4th, although they were challenging for the title when still in Europe, it didnt do them any good though making that choice.

Id prefer to do well in Europe and finish 6th in league though than do terrible in Europe and finish in 5th.
Agreed.

We were happy not being in Europe last season, we said we'd be able to concentrate on the league, and look where that ended up.

European nights at Anfield. Can't get enough of them.
 

NeverWalkedAlone

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Bloody hell. Seeing the pictures of Hiddink and the players paying their respects to the memorial for the 96 who lost their lives choked me up big time. I have the utmost respect and admiration for each classy individual that took time out of their day and it shines an excellent light onto their club in my eyes.

I hope they will be received with the same amount of respect and a large amount of applause when they enter Anfield. With the KOP being as knowledgeable as they are I fully expect that to be the case.

On to the game which I believe we enter as underdogs. Anzhi is a very good team and their record of only conceding once in the competition so far... slightly betters our defensive record...

My team:

Jones
Johnson-Coates-Skrtel-Robinson
Allen
Suso-Shelvey
Cole-Suarez-Assaidi

I think going into this game with a strong defense is integral to our chances of winning. I'd take 2 of our regular 4 in hopes of possible injuries not decimating our back-line before the derby. Agger is the an obvious choice to rest due to his history with injuries and I'm still always shocked to see Wisdom constantly picked for nearly everyone's predicted lineups. He's a massive talent but still very young and we can't burn him out with Kelly lost for the year and Flanagan battling injuries himself. Coates and Robinson slide in perfectly. Coates play isn't burdened with always having Carra by his side and Robinson is deserved of a call up due to his recent play.

With this being an important game if we wish to proceed past the group stages of the Europa league I'd pick Allen for in front of the defense. He'll bring some calm to the game and ability to implement our strategy no matter how the game goes. Above him, Shelvey picks himself and I choose Suso for the other attacking midfielder. I believe Suso performs at his best in this position and with three forward players for the defense to focus on, he's given the opportunity to either play the through ball or take it himself and dribble into the box. Shelvey and Suso are the future of our midfield so I'm personally dying to see them play together and command a game under the lights at Anfield.

Assaidi also picks himself and I think the more we see of him, the more he'll push himself into the starting XI to play alongside Suarez and Sterling for league games. To further their on-field understanding of one another and for again the reason of this being a near 'must-win' game in the Europa league Suarez will have to start. It's ridiculous we don't have another striking option... you know what... I'll avoid ranting on that subject yet again or I may pop a blood vessel. Different circumstances, I'd love to see Yesil and if we go on to lose this game then of course he'll be given all the opportunities in the upcoming Europa league fixtures.

The 3rd spot on the front three goes to either Cole or Downing. Who gives a fuck? They will both never be the players to excite me when seeing their name on the team sheet but with Johnson behind him and Suso possibly switching with him during the game giving him an opportunity to move more centrally, I'd pick Cole.

Prediction: 2 - 1 (Shelvey x2)

Way too big of a post. Fuck it. Seeing the pictures of the Anzhi players at the memorial got me fired up. This rant and two cigarettes later, I'm off to bed. YNWA.
 



Red Armada

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Pascoe has declared that we'll field a strong lineup. Personally i'd prefer we didn't or at least we shielded the players who have shouldered the burden so far. I know that we expect to be competitive in all four competitions but we don't have the depth for that.

It is far more advisable to risk losing the game with our youngsters rather than risking losing key members of the squad long term. For once let's not repeat the mistakes of the recent past.
 

Matt

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For once let's not repeat the mistakes of the recent past.
Exactly. We were woeful against Arsenal after BR played full strength team against Hearts on the Thurs before.
 

Anfield rd Dreamer

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We will field a strong line up;

Jones
Johnson, Carra, Coates, Enrique
Henderson
Shelvey, Sahin
Pacheco, Yesil, Assaidi

9 full blooded senior internationals and two players that have been rated anongst the best at youth team levels for Spain and Germany. Not saying that will be the squad but not sure why everyone thinks strong means our top players. Our back up squad is actually very strong too. Ive not even included Cole and Downing (obviously) despite their international status, most neutrals would consider them strong too.
 

Anfield rd Dreamer

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Pascoe has declared that we'll field a strong lineup. Personally i'd prefer we didn't or at least we shielded the players who have shouldered the burden so far. I know that we expect to be competitive in all four competitions but we don't have the depth for that.

It is far more advisable to risk losing the game with our youngsters rather than risking losing key members of the squad long term. For once let's not repeat the mistakes of the recent past.
Plus our worst performances in Europa League so far have been from players considered as the senior stars, its been when the "kids" were left to their own devices that we have been at our best.
 



kylel39

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It's always the same with these type of matches.

I can see the Pros/Cons of fielding both a weak side or a strong side. Some will be happy with a strong side others will disagree and want a weak side in preservation for the important one at the weekend. I don't think either is particularly wrong.

I personally on this occasion, would like to see a strongish side. I see peoples points regarding the Hearts game and the aftermath and we were certainly flat against Arsenal. I'm hopeful that was just a one off even though the evidence probably suggest that of the contrary and coupled with the recent International matches it may get worse. But it is Everton so there's going to be no issues with motivation and we've got no travel to contend with with this one. I just think trying to stay in the competition is important even if it only acts as a chance to see some more of the fringe/youth players. A game like this would probably be enough to keep the likes of Coates, Robinson and co happy for the time being. Doesn't hurt financially as well, although we know that's not a great factor with the Europa League.

All that said, we all know the plan of course will be to grab a goal or two early and take the players likely to play on Sunday off. But we at LFC hate do things the easy way and we'll probably run Suarez, Gerrard and Co. into the ground for 90 mins and bugger them for Sunday :) Here's hoping not though of course.
 

SirBillShankly

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As Matt has already said, playing Gerrard and Suarez is not a good idea, i'd go as far to say it's a terrible idea and i hope Brendan rests our main men. Add to that list DAgger, Johnson and Allen. Want them fresh and revitalised for the derby. If they play then i can see us running out of steam on sunday.
 

red to the bone

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With tricky games both teams face at the weekend this could be a game of what you're ready to risk and for what gain between Rodgers and Hiddink. Both sides will probably start weakened first elevens with some big names on the bench. Our backup players are more than capable of dealing with Anzhi's backups. But handling Eto'o could be very tricky. I'm not sure that Coates and Carra can do it. They couldn't handle Di Natale effectively and Eto'o is a class above him. I'd like to see us start either Skrtel or Agger (or both) just to handle Eto'o. He may not start the game but even if he comes in later on, without our best defenders there it could be a game over for us.

What worries me the most is the possibility that Hiddink will tactically outdo Brendan. I can easily see us trying desperately to score in the second half, BR using his subs to bring in attacking players, Hiddink bringing in Zhirkov and Eto'o and butchering us on the counter attack. Hopefully it won't come to that but, to be honest, I don't expect too much from this game.

As many people said before, we need that early goal and hope that we learned our lesson from the Udinese game.
 

SirBillShankly

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My team would be

..........................Jones...................
Wisdom......Carra.......Coates......Robinson
.....Henderson................Sahin...........
........................Shelvey.....................
Assaidi...............Yesil.................Enrique

Looks a weak and almost ridiculous line-up i know but Enrique looked good on the left the other day, i would try Assaidi wide right ahead of Cole and instead of the hapless Downing and this team is selected with the more important derby in mind and also to protect the likes of Suso and Sterling from burn out and to give our seniors a rest.
 



Anfield rd Dreamer

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My team would be

..........................Jones...................
Wisdom......Carra.......Coates......Robinson
.....Henderson................Sahin...........
........................Shelvey.....................
Assaidi...............Yesil.................Enrique

Looks a weak and almost ridiculous line-up i know but Enrique looked good on the left the other day, i would try Assaidi wide right ahead of Cole and instead of the hapless Downing and this team is selected with the more important derby in mind and also to protect the likes of Suso and Sterling from burn out and to give our seniors a rest.
Like everything except the front line Id have:

Pacheco Yesil Assaidi

Instead.

Then load the bench with the heavy hitters for if needed. I actually believe the midfield and defence you listed is good enough.
 

SoueysTash

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If the papers are right and we're playing a strong team this could be very much a defining moment in BR's career at Liverpool. If he plays a strong team, we win now and on Sunday then he'll be a hero, if we lose both...well, questions will asked about playing a strong team in the competition.
 

shlohmoh

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Can see us being 'famously scalped' at this.Suarez of course will dazzle and if you listen carefully,there will be a rustling of Dagestani cheque books in the air-I trust the Blessed Brendan is not looking at anything less than £30m for our mercurial Luis,but he is the kind of player their fans crave.
We will probably go on the back burner for this one with the derby in mind,staying out of tackles,no running down the lost cause or bustin a gut to get in the box - since the savvy seniors I understand , are going to be on duty.Hope Pepe has his game face on.
 

Anfield rd Dreamer

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"A young guy will run through a barbwire fence for you. An older guy will look for the holes!"

Anzhi are the barbed wire, with the derby on the other side we cant afford any of our guys being half hearted tonight and looking for the holes.

I agree tonight and the derby could be a huge boost or massive set back for us.

I actually think the worst thing that could happen tonight would be play the seniors and lose.

If the seniors play then no excuses we have to win.

If the kids play and lose then its just "oh well"! An move on.

If the kids play and get anything out of the game it will be a huge boost, much more than a senior side win.
 

bigdai77

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i've seen this question posted elsewhere without a knowledgable response, but, where the hell is Doni? surely he needs to be on the bench with Reina out. if not, are we still paying him wages? are we fineing him for going walkabout. as for the team i'd like to see yesil and morgan get on the bench at least.
 



EdWood

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i've seen this question posted elsewhere without a knowledgable response, but, where the hell is Doni? surely he needs to be on the bench with Reina out. if not, are we still paying him wages? are we fineing him for going walkabout. as for the team i'd like to see yesil and morgan get on the bench at least.
Hmmmm.......certainly sounds like us.

I think he's on a pre-Carnivale break or post-Carnivale break or an actual Carnivale break or somesuch ;)
 

Chewbazza

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It's a weird one this, if we were doing okay in the league and this was a Champions League group game, most would be clamoring for the strongest possible line-up and worry about Everton later.

With the squad as it is at the moment, we can't afford really to think like that.

Personally, I'd go for 'reserve' rather than 'youth' as much as possible here.

..........................Jones...................
Wisdom......Carra.......Coates......Robinson
.....Henderson................Sahin...........
........................Shelvey.....................
Cole...............Yesil.................Assadi

Suso, Gerrard, Suarez, Enrique, Johnson and Downing ( for when Cole limps off after 15mins)

If we're stuggling to impact up front bring on any of Suso, Gerrard, Suarez
Rest of the bench offers enough to resolve most other problems, especially if Wisdom able to move to CB if anything happens to the starting two.
 

ChicagoRed

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After most of our players played during the international break and had only 2/3 days of rest prior to the Reading game, I thought we would rest most of our top players in this game. Not sure its worth risking losing points to Everton in order to progress through in Europa League.
 

Dane

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Bit of a tricky one for Rodgers.
The derby is massive in terms of league progression and confidence levels, but if he doesn't put out a strong team here we can effectively say goodbye to qualifying.

Top professionals should be able to play twice in 4 days once in a while, so lame excuses to the contrary are wasted on me.
It's a lot to to with attitude and desire, let's see how many are found wanting.
 

norwegian Suarez

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[sub]I think Enrique is playing to night, He needs match training. Assaidi has been a handful when he has played, so I think he will start to. Jones starts for the injuried Reina.
Coates and Shelvey also is near the starting XI and needs to play. Others like Downing and Cole I think will start on the bench. rest of the team will bee from the regulars. I think Suarez will start togethet with Johnson, Either Agger or Skrtel. The midfield is hard to predict...Gerrard is rumored to start (Echo)

Jones

Johnson - Coates - Agger - Enrique

Gerrard - Hendo - Shelvey

Downing (Changed my mind...sterling needs a rest) - Suarez - Assaidi[/sub]
 



Arminius

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i've seen this question posted elsewhere without a knowledgable response, but, where the hell is Doni? surely he needs to be on the bench with Reina out. if not, are we still paying him wages? are we fineing him for going walkabout.
The club has kept silent as to what is going on, so you can assume it is not a disciplinary matter. Whatever it is, the club clearly understands both the situation and Doni's need for privacy.
 

AnfieldCat

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Its a shame but I wouldn't even entertain the idea of playing Luis, we need to keep him fit for the majority of the season espcially until January. the good thing about him is he hardly ever gets injured but I suppose I want him fresh for Sunday.
 

zagueiro

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Its a shame but I wouldn't even entertain the idea of playing Luis, we need to keep him fit for the majority of the season espcially until January. the good thing about him is he hardly ever gets injured but I suppose I want him fresh for Sunday.
Neither did Lucas :( and we all now know how that went....
 

Arminius

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Its a shame but I wouldn't even entertain the idea of playing Luis, we need to keep him fit for the majority of the season espcially until January. the good thing about him is he hardly ever gets injured but I suppose I want him fresh for Sunday.
With Uruguay really needing him to fight for WC qualification, if we overplay and he gets injured for any relevant amount of time, I would really worry about the club's relationship with him. I don't think most English fans quite understand that for South American players, there is no club versus country debate.
 

lfc491

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Will be interesting to see how the team sets up tactically. Going up against Hiddink is always a game of chess. This is almost like a champions league fixture.