Saturday, 20 December 2014

Liverpool (A)

It's been a while since my last post and in that time we've won some big games against Southampton and Newcastle but also lost a disappointing match against Stoke. After we thrashed Newcastle last weekend hopefully we can kick on as we get right into the thick of the Christmas period and we take one Liverpool at Anfield.

Now Anfield is a place where we've had mixed success after years of good performances we got taken apart last season. However Liverpool have been in even worse form than we have this season. Losing Suarez and Sturridge has cost them although their main problem so far has been at the back, where they have been leaking goals. Just last week their first choice keeper was replaced as they got thumped 3-0 at Old Trafford. If that doesn't scream problems then I don't know what does.

In terms of injuries our midfield that seemed so crowded at the beginning of the season has now been battered as we have a severe lack of central Midfielders. The OX faces a late fitness test ahead of the match and if he fails that, without Ramsey we are in big trouble. In some good news Chambers returns from suspension so I suspect we will see him slot alongside Mertesacker with Debuchy being shifted out to his familiar right. Welbeck, Cazorla and Sanchez will operate in supporting roles for Giroud upfront.

Liverpools back line tomorrow could be bare bones stuff with Johnson out and Lovren a doubt. We could see Arsenal old boy Kolo Toure handed a start. I don't rate Lazar Markovic as a wing back to whoever is on our right (probably Alexis) could have a field day as he wanders forward. Liverpool are also without Balotelli who has been banned by the FA so I'd think they'd go with Sterling upfront who has been hit and miss this season. Initially I thought this could be bad for us but thinking about it more, it means they have to pass the ball well and control the game which I'd like to think against us will be difficult. If they were playing Lambert the long balls and his hold up play may cause us problems with players making runs off him.

Looking at todays results with teams around us picking up points tomorrow is a huge game and hopefully one that we can take by the scruff of the neck and put in a shift that will take all 3 points back to the Emirates and set us up nicely for the Christmas period where we play 800 games in 10 days.