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Post Match: Aston Villa 0-1 Liverpool (Sturridge)

kopite1982

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Check this tweet out

@neilashton_: Making Lucas my player of the weekend. He was outstanding for Liverpool yesterday.
 


SoueysTash

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kopite1982 said:
Check this tweet out

@neilashton_: Making Lucas my player of the weekend. He was outstanding for Liverpool yesterday.
Yeh I just posted a riposte to that on twitter...not expecting a satisfactory answer...

Edit: just realised, he's a journo!!! Must have only seen highlights
 

kopite1982

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SoueysTash said:
Yeh I just posted a riposte to that on twitter...not expecting a satisfactory answer...

Edit: just realised, he's a journo!!! Must have only seen highlights
This made ma laugh

@Emillins: @LucasLeiva87 You caused five-loosed balls... Stop that! It's unlike you...

@LucasLeiva87: @Emillins watch the whole game not the last 10 min.
 

rupzzz

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Lucas had a couple of hairy moments, but his positioning and tactical awareness always goes unnoticed.

He was still at the right place at the right time. Just needs to gain match sharpness now to pick out the right pass.
 

NZred

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kopite1982 said:
Check this tweet out

@neilashton_: Making Lucas my player of the weekend. He was outstanding for Liverpool yesterday.
Must have been watching a different match. He gash, easily the worst LFC player on the pitch.
 



therealkeano1

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NZred said:
Check this tweet out


@neilashton_: Making Lucas my player of the weekend. He was outstanding for Liverpool yesterday.



Must have been watching a different match. He gash, easily the worst LFC player on the pitch.
I think you were. Lucas was good not at his best but still one of our best players.
 

Tetteh_Dalglish

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SoueysTash said:
It doesn't matter whether we're playing defensively or not, if Lucas can't play whilst under pressure then I really don't think he's a player we should be keeping on the books longer term. His job is to break up play and give the ball quickly, that's his role...he failed too often in that yesterday.

I think the whole coming back from injury thing isn't really an excuse, I'm not convinced he's the right man for the job in the system. He might just have had a bad day and I hope he proves me wrong. If Gerrard & Toure hadn't baby sat him - it could've been a lot worse.

Edit: In addition...if I were an opposing team manager I'd be putting Lucas under constant pressure...bound to result in some goals and that's the real danger with the lackadaisical approach he showed yesterday
Yeah, I think you're reading too much into a great day at the office for Villa's midfield and bad day at the office for several of our players making Lucas' job hard. Villa were closing down as a group and pressing even the players off the ball very closely. It meant we needed to be working hard off the ball to make some pace so the player in possession could have someone to pass to. Many of our up-field players were failing to do this, except Sturridge. Coutinho did it a fair bit in the 1st half and got clipped several times and closed down very quickly. Lucas would be the one to get caught in possession, especially in the 2nd half, because he'd see a pass and be about to execute but the player would be very tightly marked. This got worse as the game progressed because Villa pressed more and more and our players weren't moving a lot off the ball to give the CMs an outlet. This happened to Gerrard too - not just Lucas. In fact, Gerrard gave the ball away significantly more times than he typically does.

Given how crucial Lucas has been to us, with our results and performances dipping monstrously when he has been out injured, I think it's absolute madness to suggest he can't play under pressure. I did see you used the word "if", so probably someone else suggested that was the issue? Not calling you or anyone else out, but Lucas would be the first name on my team-sheet in most matches against teams with a strong midfield presence. It's the position in which we also have nobody else who can even do as good a job as he does, much less improve on him. We ought to reinforce that position both for back-up and for competition, but the notion of selling Lucas? Absolutely crazy.
 

mccabsea

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jimmydestiny said:
I thought he said thanks to God for the opportunity to play in his position......
If he keeps scoring the winning goal every game he can thank whoever he wants as far as I'm concerned. :)
 

mccabsea

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ptt said:
If I was at a PC I'd start a new thread but I've no idea what to call it. "Will we win the league" "When will we win the league" "Where will we finish" "How gorgeous will out annihilation of United be"? All good questions but somebody please put some thought in and open THE thread :)
I've been away from here for a while, nice to see you are still the sensible, moderate head on the forum ptt. :)
 

Mascot88

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I don't get this Lucas was Gash thing. I thought he was fine. He a genuinely brilliant first 45 where he didn't give Villa a second and won everything.

In the second half he struggled as we sat deeper, and as far as I could tell he couldn't get an outball.

I'm not saying he was immense. He was OK over the 90. I could give you a number of players who were worse. Agger and Johnson were terrible. Aspas was largely anonymous, Henderson did fuck all. Coutinho was quiet by his standards.

Lucas had a better game than all those.
 



redbj

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Saying Lucas had a better game than countinho is like saying your fiat 500 was faster than your Ferrari because you left the Ferrari in the garage and took the fiat on the front nature strip and washed it.....

Both cars did fuck all is I suppose my point.....one being slightly more involved than the other is a non point.

But I digress, it's not his basic errors that I was overly upset with, it was more the philosophy of Rodgers mindset after 35 mins, definitely after half time.

Again to qualify, generally very happy with 6 points, couldn't help but get pissed off whilst watching that game though, which I think is natural.
 

Tetteh_Dalglish

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Agreed Mascot. Lucas had a very good first 45 just as the team overall did. Villa upped their tempo and overall game, pressure and movement significantly in the 2nd, and we had to be very organized as a team to prevent them scoring. We didn't have our best game, but I'm not sure enough credit is being given to Paul Lambert's Villa team. I thought Arsenal must have been shit to lose 3-1, 'til I saw that Villa played very well. They did really well against Chelsea too and were unlucky to lose. Again we had to work our socks off to cope with their fast movement and pressure in the 2nd half and we did quite well without really playing our best.

To bash any individuals after yesterday seems a bit harsh. The team as a whole did a pretty good job and were remarkably organized in defense if not very good with the ball in the 2nd half. Some of that may be due to having to work so hard to win the ball back. Villa did to us what we do to some opponents.

Lucas was better than many others, but yes, he like everyone else struggled to cope with Villa's pressure. I struggle to understand how he is being singled out for criticism when he did his primary job VERY well. Gerrard had to also carry more defensive duty and perhaps didn't have the legs to contribute as much in possession, so we all sat deeper. Frequently Gerrard would sit deep and Lucas would be the one who had to close down the man with the ball once they got past our attackers. Fabian Delph and Leandro Bacuna were a handful to deal with and Lucas made several crucial tackles and interceptions and even made one very crucial foul (for which he got booked) when we looked vulnerable.

Again, credit to Villa for their 2nd half performance. They forced us back and prevented us from playing our game and many players couldn't settle in the 2nd half and couldn't cope with the pressure from their CBs, full backs and midfield. Lucas and Gerrard had a tough time distributing the ball 'cos Villa closed everyone down so quickly and so aggressively.

Sometimes I think our fans watch our own players so closely they don't see what the other team is doing. That's the only way bashing Lucas makes any sense.
 

NZred

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therealkeano1 said:
I think you were. Lucas was good not at his best but still one of our best players.
Nope. Lucas gave away the ball COUNTLESS times in key areas due to pissing around with the ball and generally just being too slow to move it on.
 

Mascot88

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Tetteh_Dalglish said:
...and even made one very crucial foul (for which he got booked) when we looked vulnerable.
If you'd have been watching in my house in the run up to that, you'd have heard me shouting "Bring him down! Bring him fucking down!"

I love a good professional foul.
 

Mascot88

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NZred said:
Nope. Lucas gave away the ball COUNTLESS times in key areas due to pissing around with the ball and generally just being too slow to move it on.
Nope. If you watch the match again with an eye on what's happening around Lucas, you'll notice that the rigid shape we adopted was preventing the kind of movement that creates an out ball. Lucas is having to dwell on the ball waiting for a teammate to offer himself for a pass, and getting caught.

The rest of the team, especially Gerrard, suffered similarly.
 



Tetteh_Dalglish

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NZred said:
Nope. Lucas gave away the ball COUNTLESS times in key areas due to pissing around with the ball and generally just being too slow to move it on.
We see it very differently. Sure, there were times he was caught in possession - but some of that was because our players weren't moving off the ball well to evade their markers and give the man with the ball someone to pass to, and Villa were pressing so quickly. It's not like he was just waltzing around with all the time in the world and kept fucking up. Gerrard was also guilty of this, though arguably less so than Lucas. But Gerrard's 34, way more experienced and obviously a far, far better player. So we'd expect Gerrard to be better than Lucas. But Gerrard was also decidedly below his own normal standard - as were most of our players in the 2nd half. A lot of that was because of Villa's superb performance.

We ought to remember that we had an opponent out there. We weren't just screwing up in a vaccuum. Our opponent was doing to us what we often do to other teams and they deserve more credit than our players deserve to be bashed. Yes, there's room for improvement, but this match shows we have made HUGE improvements since last season and the year before. This is the sort of match we would have managed to lose or draw over the last 3 or 4 seasons. And it was the whole team's effort and credit to Rogdgers and co too: we were very organized as a team, defending as a group and keeping fairly organized. We failed to use the ball well and invited more pressure on ourselves - so there's still plenty of room for improvement. But we won as a result of a well organized team, grinding out a win despite a difficult away fixture.

Room for improvement, but more positives than negatives.
 

NZred

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Mascot88 said:
Nope. If you watch the match again with an eye on what's happening around Lucas, you'll notice that the rigid shape we adopted was preventing the kind of movement that creates an out ball. Lucas is having to dwell on the ball waiting for a teammate to offer himself for a pass, and getting caught.

The rest of the team, especially Gerrard, suffered similarly.
I can remember two very distinct times when a simple sideways balls to Gerrard and Johnson would have resulted in possession being kept, instead he dwelled took an extra touch and lost ball.

It's at this time I would like to point out that in my match summary post I pointed out that defensively Lucas was very good and broke up a lot of play. But his ball retention and passing cost us possession

Tetteh_Dalglish said:
We see it very differently. Sure, there were times he was caught in possession - but some of that was because our players weren't moving off the ball well to evade their markers and give the man with the ball someone to pass to, and Villa were pressing so quickly. It's not like he was just waltzing around with all the time in the world and kept fucking up. Gerrard was also guilty of this, though arguably less so than Lucas. But Gerrard's 34, way more experienced and obviously a far, far better player. So we'd expect Gerrard to be better than Lucas. But Gerrard was also decidedly below his own normal standard - as were most of our players in the 2nd half. A lot of that was because of Villa's superb performance.

We ought to remember that we had an opponent out there. We weren't just screwing up in a vaccuum. Our opponent was doing to us what we often do to other teams and they deserve more credit than our players deserve to be bashed. Yes, there's room for improvement, but this match shows we have made HUGE improvements since last season and the year before. This is the sort of match we would have managed to lose or draw over the last 3 or 4 seasons. And it was the whole team's effort and credit to Rogdgers and co too: we were very organized as a team, defending as a group and keeping fairly organized. We failed to use the ball well and invited more pressure on ourselves - so there's still plenty of room for improvement. But we won as a result of a well organized team, grinding out a win despite a difficult away fixture.

Room for improvement, but more positives than negatives.
I can agree with that :)

Definitely a performance where you take the positives but maybe focus on the negatives (which in itself is a positive) knowing we won a tricky away tie against a very dangerous Villa side, all while not playing a full 90 minutes.
 

Tetteh_Dalglish

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Mascot88 said:
Nope. If you watch the match again with an eye on what's happening around Lucas, you'll notice that the rigid shape we adopted was preventing the kind of movement that creates an out ball. Lucas is having to dwell on the ball waiting for a teammate to offer himself for a pass, and getting caught.

The rest of the team, especially Gerrard, suffered similarly.
I didn't think we had a particularly rigid shape... but we typically do our best when players interchange positions and move forward as a team. Against a strong counter-attacking team, we had to maintain a bit more positional discipline to avoid getting caught out. Think back to last year and the year before with Kenny and the matches where we dominated possession and got caught out on the break after camping around opponent's boxes. Chasing back with players all over the place and no defensive shape, we were vulnerable on the counter. We saw that risk and adapted and prevented that from happening. Credit to the whole team for being as disciplined as was necessary.

The challenge is to maintain more of an attacking threat while keeping organized and maintaining our defensive shape. We do not yet have the counter-attacking cohesiveness in our locker. This is why UTD are so dangerous. They can do both - counter-attack with great pace and organization and also drop back into their shape fairly quickly when an opponent breaks. It took Fergie decades to get that balance right. We are not there yet.

So I don't think it was rigidity so much - we chose to sit deeper and stay closer to where we needed to be to defend properly. We weren't able to do that and keep our attacking play effective because our attacking play is based on players interchanging position and covering for each other while we press high up the field. This match highlighted an area we need to improve, but that we still coped and won is testament to the progress being made.
 

Tetteh_Dalglish

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NZred said:
I can remember two very distinct times when a simple sideways balls to Gerrard and Johnson would have resulted in possession being kept, instead he dwelled took an extra touch and lost ball.

It's at this time I would like to point out that in my match summary post I pointed out that defensively Lucas was very good and broke up a lot of play. But his ball retention and passing cost us possession


..
Definitely a performance where you take the positives but maybe focus on the negatives (which in itself is a positive) knowing we won a tricky away tie against a very dangerous Villa side, all while not playing a full 90 minutes.
Fair enough. I think you aren't being too harsh, but yes, you definitely are focusing on the negatives, perhaps seeing it a bit worse than I saw it. We probably agree there's certainly room for improvement. I think Lucas wasn't at his best in possession, but I give more credit to the opponent's work in forcing that to happen. Their approach made Coutinho stay more to the left to avoid leaving the flank open. It kept our full-backs from pushing too far forward in the 2nd half. And their tight midfield pressure limited the options available.

As we continue to improve, we need to have more of an answer to this type of play. But I'll be happy if we can keep winning while being hounded and pressured by an opponent who's gameplay is clicking perfectly on the day (I doubt they'll be able to sustain it over the whole season). Having lost their last two matches while playing similarly (despite being hard done by by the ref against Chelsea), they may be a bit less confident. And with teams like this, that vulnerable confidence could undo them against other organized teams. Especially if they fall behind and have to chase the game.

I do want to see add a more incisive counter-attack to our play. We don't yet have that in our locker and we need it in tough away games against teams who are also good at keeping the ball. Suarez helps greatly in this respect because he has a good burst of pace, can wriggle out of tight situations, draw a foul to help us organize and get men forward, or bring others into the game when we are on the counter-attack. Good players of that ability create for themselves an extra bit of space which gives them an extra bit of time on the ball.

It's why we all want more players of the top tier in our team. We become that much harder to pin-back successfully, as we'll be able to break with more threat on the counter.
 

NZred

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Tetteh_Dalglish said:
Fair enough. I think you aren't being too harsh, but yes, you definitely are focusing on the negatives, perhaps seeing it a bit worse than I saw it. We probably agree there's certainly room for improvement. I think Lucas wasn't at his best in possession, but I give more credit to the opponent's work in forcing that to happen. Their approach made Coutinho stay more to the left to avoid leaving the flank open. It kept our full-backs from pushing too far forward in the 2nd half. And their tight midfield pressure limited the options available.

As we continue to improve, we need to have more of an answer to this type of play. But I'll be happy if we can keep winning while being hounded and pressured by an opponent who's gameplay is clicking perfectly on the day (I doubt they'll be able to sustain it over the whole season). Having lost their last two matches while playing similarly (despite being hard done by by the ref against Chelsea), they may be a bit less confident. And with teams like this, that vulnerable confidence could undo them against other organized teams. Especially if they fall behind and have to chase the game.

I do want to see add a more incisive counter-attack to our play. We don't yet have that in our locker and we need it in tough away games against teams who are also good at keeping the ball. Suarez helps greatly in this respect because he has a good burst of pace, can wriggle out of tight situations, draw a foul to help us organize and get men forward, or bring others into the game when we are on the counter-attack. Good players of that ability create for themselves an extra bit of space which gives them an extra bit of time on the ball.

It's why we all want more players of the top tier in our team. We become that much harder to pin-back successfully, as we'll be able to break with more threat on the counter.
Agreed and Agreed.

Just on this highlighted part, comes from the manager in me. Coached many teams and it always stuck with me that you train during the week based on what you believe were the weakest aspects of your game the weekend before. Means I generally pick out what was wrong with a performance, rather than what was right.
 



lancashirelad

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Wonderful ... "Liverpool FC the only TEAM in the world, where you can experience the thrill of victory and the agony of reading about it the next day." Apologies to Mike Schmitt...

Look, villa are a great team on the counter, watch the defense again, they pushed Villas forwards into areas they were not comfortable in, overall two mistakes by dagger but a win.

Yes we had far too shots on goal but the midfield were probably under orders to hold their positions and stop the counter, Stevie didnt see not much of the opposition half, that's not age that's common sense,.
 

WellRedKev

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Very happy with another 3 points. Perfect away performance in that we kept a clean sheet and came away with three points. Tactically it looked as if we werent closing down up top from faitgue or lack of effort butR odgers said in interview he asked them to drop deeper and defend in our own half and winning 1-0 makes him correct and right.

Our perfomance needs to be better in the last 20 mins of matches but we were in complete control in that first half. To perform like that away from home is encouraging. Finding our feet a wee bit still and for me we can only get better when we click properly.

Kolo again was top drawer and love seeing him rise up for the headers.Its clear to see he's got a new lease of life by all this and we are the ones gonna benefit from having a top pro with a top attitude.

The big one Sunday is a different ball game, win that and excitment might take over!!! We need to raise our game so much more against United. But i think we will. cant see us getting beat.
 

gasband

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It will be another 1-0 win to us. With Evra scoring the winning goal from us after he trips and fall in front of his goal and the ball bouncing off his ugly face.
 

RedSouthIndian

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Fantastic first 30 minutes followed by lackluster performance. But despite this, 2nd straight win, second clean sheet and six points out of six. We ripped Villa apart until we scored and then let the game drift. Where were Couti & Aspas? Lucas had a decent first half followed by a horrendous second. Gerrard was good in patches. Other than Toure, Mingnolet & Sturridge, everyone had an average game.

Villa ran out of energy mid way through the second half. Instead of taking advantage of this, I thought we invited pressure on ourselves by sitting deep. Lucas was particularly guilty of wasting possession and committing silly fouls. Thankfully, didn't get punished for that.

Overall, I am really glad that we are off to a fantastic start. Amongst our rivals, Gooners had a good win at Fulham. Spurs had to work their socks off to defeat Swansea. One other result that favoured us was Man city's defeat at Cardiff. And bluenoses have not won a game so far. And if Chelsea draw at Manure, it would be a near perfect week.

I hope FSG are listening / seeing what is happening. I thought a win against Villa will help them persuade loosening their purse strings a bit. Hope there is a marquee signing this week!!
 

Tokyo_Red

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Three main things we learned from the Villa game which shows me that we might have a better chance of getting into the top 4 than I first thought.

1) Sturridge is a top player. He really was wasted by Chelsea and I'm glad he now has the chance to show his quality. Works hard, can be very clinical and has matured into a very classy player.

2)Rodgers has the tactical acumen to keep opposition managers guessing. After watching us at Villa, Moyes will have a little voice in his head warning him not assume we will play a 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1 and that could force him into an error.

3)Defensive improvements against set pieces are there to see. Villa had a number of set pieces but other than Benteke's half chance they rarely threatened.

It was 3 in the morning but I rarely felt like we'd concede and after seeing the way arsenal were beaten a week before I'm very happy to have 6 points.
 



kylel39

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I think someone mentioned it previously but I would bet there will be very few teams who come away with a clean sheet at Villa Park. With that strikeforce - primarily Benteke - they'll get goals in most of their home games.

Overall it was an good first half, not so great second half attacking-wise but defensively we were pretty solid. Toure was my MOTM but a special mention to Gerrard who I thought was excellent in the second half particularly.

6 points with the Mancs up next, I'm delighted with that start to our season.
 

liveforthereds

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All the Lucas bashing going on in here I just don't understand why, Why because we have won a game that in the past we would have lost. The result is more important for me. No player in the 90 mins of play is going to be perfect not even Messi, all players will give the ball away, all players will not make ever pass and they will miss a tackle or two. It's a team game and there is 10 other players on the pitch!!!
 

redbj

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Pointing out he didn't play well isn't bashing though, is it.

Feels like 2009 again, for some bizarre reason he's untouchable....
 

SoueysTash

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redbj said:
Pointing out he didn't play well isn't bashing though, is it.

Feels like 2009 again, for some bizarre reason he's untouchable....
Bashing is just saying "what a shit player" pointing out instances in the game where you feel he didn't perform is constructive criticism...Very few people on here "bash" players, it's like getting some feedback at work if your boss pulls you up on something...People need to understand criticism is part and parcel of life and it's not all done deliberately to undermine, it's mostly done (in our case as fans) in the hope that the manager picks up on it and resolves the areas he/we/whoever needs to improve...

That said...Downing was shit.
 

liveforthereds

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redbj said:
Pointing out he didn't play well isn't bashing though, is it.

Feels like 2009 again, for some bizarre reason he's untouchable....
Not untouchable, just pointingg out that it's always Lucas when there are 10 other players on the pitch, the second half there was pleaty to have a go at but that's not really being pucked up on. Lucas like anyother is not perfect but is first to get the stick and this goes back to when he first came. Just what has Lucas got to do for the fans to get off his back. He maynot have had a good second half but having said that not many did.