If you have anything to say on any subject, mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Slaven Bilic suggested that West Ham played “parking the bus but with the handbrake off”.
Parking the minibus? Sturdy but with a bit more manoeuvrability?
Tesh, London (Glasgow for the weekend)
Brendan Rodgers surely has to be the king of putting foot firmly into mouth? Every single time he comes out with a grand statement of our progression, we lose the next game! Please Brendan, come out saying we’re going to get destroyed my Man Utd, that way we might have a chance!
Cian LFC (brackets)
Once again the most stylish thing about Liverpool was Brendan’s suit. He definitely has the vain man’s eye for quality threads. Unfortunately his tactical judgement isn’t as unerring as his fashion sense.
Could Brendan really have been caught unaware of how West Ham would set up? That they’d sit deep and narrow and force Liverpool to play through them? Yet it took Rodgers until after the break to go three at the back in order to get some pace and width through wingbacks Moreno and Clyne. An elementary choice to begin with I would’ve thought. And even then, down two and in desperate need of a goal he elects to drop Can, who admittedly wasn’t having a stellar day, but who always offers unpredictability and a forward threat, in favour of Leiva. Now I’m a big fan of Lucas, but really … unless Can had an injury I’m unaware of, it’s a head-scratching decision to put it kindly.
There was much to scratch one’s head over in this one. Like for instance why Benteke was left in virtual isolation. What on earth was he supposed to do with what little service he received when Firmino, Coutinho, and Ings were almost always 20 or 30 yards away? Who was Clyne supposed to be picking out on his overlaps when there’s one lonely attacker in a box packed with defenders? What was … Oh never mind.
I made a long list of these mysteries on a scratch pad as I watched. It kept me from pulling my hair out, or rubbing at my bleeding eyes. But it seems beyond futile to go on with them. Obviously the first half at Arsenal was a mirage, like Lovren’s excellent season at Southampton. But before I end this rant I do want to make a point about the refereeing. Kevin Friend is an excellent fourth official. If you need a man to stand on the sidelines and good-naturedly put up with the abuse of managers he’s your man. But he is a poor choice for the middle of the park. The sending off of Coutinho was a poor decision, but a straight red card to Mark Noble was completely mental. Not that it mattered to the result of course. We were lost the moment Brendan employed better judgement in his choice of wardrobe than his tactics.
Coulda Been A Contender
Wednesday 26th August– ‘Why are Liverpool such title outsiders?’
Saturday 29th August- Liverpool 0-3 West Ham
Curse of the mailboxer
Sak Him Off
well it’s nice to know Dejan Lovren isn’t dead but Brendan, can you play that other lad play? you know the one who looked pretty bloody solid in the first 3 games?
if not then play Sakho, he’s pretty bloody good aswell.
Tyla (in all fairness West Ham look like a nightmare to play at home) Roxburgh, Merseyside
Remember that article by Sarah Winterburn saying we’ve reached Peak Brendan sometime last year? She had absolutely no idea. This is peak Brendan. Liverpool are staring down at yet another failed season. I know its just four games in but come on, does anyone else think different?
The problem with Liverpool is that they don’t know what they want. Look at their transfer record for the past couple of seasons. They keep spending on players who last a maximum of one season at the club. That’s it. No long term planning, no forethought into these signing.
Change is needed at Liverpool and I am not just looking at Rodgers. Failure to make these changes now will put Liverpool firmly in the mid table and the way some of the other mid-table clubs have started the season, it anybody guess where Liverpool will end up.
– Kay (Yes, I know they are 6th in the league table)
Liverpool And Midget Albino Strippers
I watched the Liverpool pre match interview with Lovren and immediately sensed a disaster in the making. His take on Liverpool’s improving defense and the work that they have done made me think of only one thing. My binge drinking.
I routinely wake up from a session and think to myself. F**k I should not have spent $400 on lap dances from midget albinos. F**k I should not have defecated in line at Burger King, F**k I should invest in adult diapers.
Listening to Lovren made me think of one thing. One of those rare nights where I go out, get bladdered and don’t make a complete fool of myself. I wake up and think ‘F**k me I’ve got this all sorted’ only to completely derail a week later.
Lovren get a grip. Defense sucks. It’s only a matter of time before the midget strippers come calling.
Jason Gallagher, Montreal Canada, Via Bangor Norn Iron.
Rodgers Is Just Not Good Enough
I wish yesterdays results was this huge shock, this huge disappointment after a promising start to the season which has taken the wind out of our sails…
But it isn’t a shock, we have been awful in every game this season and the results have been a false dawn.
Stoke – how they didn’t score against us is a mystery and lets face it a moment of sheer brilliance from Coutinho won us 3 undeserved points. But hey… “playing badly and winning is the hallmark of a great team…” is it not? We are not even a good team…
Bournemouth – Not a goal… at all?! Coutinho might as well as waved the flag himself so obvious was his being offside. We never got started in the game and the goal really knocked Bournemouth’s belief after their positive unrewarded start and disgracefully disallowed goal.
Arsenal – They have alot of the same problems as us, underperforming players and a soft defence. I think a draw was a fair result based on how awful the game was. I think even Cech’s point blank save from Benteke was more striker failing than goalkeeping skill, if you cannot score from there are you really worth £32.5 odd million?
West Ham – Wow… just wow! We never got to grips with West Ham moving the ball, our defensive structure was shocking and Lovren should be as far away from a football as humanly possible. I rated him so highly at Southampton but he has probably had one good game since joining us… 3-0 was a gift, should’ve been 4 or 5…
Instead of 7 points after 4 games, in reality a fairer return would be between 1 and 4. We will not get anything from OT, so that should be our total from 5 games. Awful.
When I saw West Ham had scored first, I knew we were going to lose. We always struggle against teams at home who score first and/or have a well organised defence. Norwich, Leicester, Chelsea, Southampton, Un*ted, Aston Villa etc. are just a few examples of teams who we have failed to win against at Anfield but in reality, the list is endless… I haven’t even factored in last season’s disastrous Champions League campaign. Rodgers seems remiss to use this knowledge to change – this for me is the failing of any manager or leader.
Rodgers talks of belief and confidence being the foundations of his coaching. We seemingly fall to pieces when we concede first, fail to score in the first 20 minutes, face an organised defence… this foundation on which this house of tactics seems to be built on a foundation of sand.
Rodgers has now had 3 season as Liverpool manager, we have finished 7th, 2nd, 6th -an average position of 5th, which is by definition not top 4 and not good enough, not for a club of Liverpool’s stature but based on the money he has been afforded.
We missed a massive chance this summer to wish Brendan good luck in his future endeavours and get Ancelotti or Klopp – we probably wouldn’t have improved overnight or even in a season but they are proven managers.
I guess what my ramblings are trying to say is I do not think Rodgers will bring success to Liverpool, we have regressed as a side over the past 12+ months and now will probably finish 6th-8th again this season. He was lucky when we finished 2nd that Sturridge stayed injury free, Suarez was playing like a superhuman and Sterling was an unknown quantity – we were top with three games left, the league title was in our grasp and he somehow managed to throw that away. Rival fans laugh at Liverpool, Stevie G etc. and yeah I would and have done the exact same but this capitulation was down to Rodgers and Rodgers alone.
Un*ted next… GREAT!
Jon Andrews, LFC
Klopp On The Horizon
My initial reaction to our poor pre-season results where I predicted a fight for 4th seems to be more than justified, it may even have been a tad optimistic.
Terrible performance again and at this rate we will have a hard time getting European football next season. Roman has many traits but we know patience is not one of them and I think Jose has about a month left and in late September or early October Klopp will be in.
The stubborn insistence on keeping Ivanovic in the side, especially against pacy wingers, makes no sense at all and he’s been responsible for almost all the goals conceded this season. Thanks for your service but it’s time to go. Jose has had the ruthless streak with dropping goal keepers but he seems to bottle the decision with a few of his players that needs to be dropped. Matic, who was imperious last season, looks a shadow of the player we know he can be and Fabregas has been useless both going forward and in defense. Pedro, Azpilicueta, and Zouma are the only players who have performed to an acceptable standard and the rest of the team has been well below par.
There were some encouraging signs with the young players Kenedy and Loftus-Cheek doing well in their short cameos. Loftus-Cheek does look a real prospect and it feels great finally having a player come through the youth system since the first time since Jody Morris and John Terry came in the team almost 15-20 years ago. Hopefully he has a similar career to Terry rather than Morris. Kenedy was really lively and added a much needed injection of pace to the side and he doesn’t appear to be afraid to shoot from distance either which brings another dimension.
I don’t see the point of getting Stones in as we already had three full international central defenders that we sent out on loan, they could have been easily slotted in to the side rather than getting an expensive England reserve who will be on the bench next year when Christensen and Kalas return to fight for the spot next to Zouma in the center of the defense. This season appears to be one of those dreaded transitional seasons, I just don’t think Jose will be the man to oversee the changes or the best choice for it
MJ (Los Angeles)
Arsenal Don’t Need A Striker…
All that possession, playing against 10 men with half of the opposition on a yellow card tight rope before the break and all we have to show for it is one own goal.
Here comes the inevitable “Arsenal need a world class striker” brigade. Now it would be nice, but what would help more is Arsenal’s midfield not fart-arsing around with the ball so bloody much. Its an EPL game, not a training run. Pick up the tempo for crying out loud.
Also, Theo – get out on the wing and stay there.
Matt Wright, Gunner in Aus.
Own Goal: 2 Giroud: 1 Walcott: 0
Looks like Wenger did go out and make a deal to get the goals for Arsenal.
Just like Ferguson in 2012, he signed Own Goal. And now, if we can complete our summer business with the signing of Howard Webb, we’d be unstoppable this season!
Shreyas (ManUtd to win the 4th place trophy again) Krishna
Burnley To The Rescue
They’re going to sign Joey Barton aren’t they? Careful what you wish for, Gooners.
More Arsenal Observations
a) It’s a rather odd co-incidence that Wenger played a front three with frightening pace and Ozil was out ‘injured’. This might sound crazy but how about trying the two together next time? Or even Giroud up front, with Alexis and Theo on the wings.
b) Following on from the above- I think Wenger erred in starting Theo up front. It’s apparent that Theo’s issues are psychological and that there is a mental divide in his head between being tagged a “winger” and a “striker”. “Winger” Walcott would have been converted those chances, “striker” Walcott just doesn’t exude the same confidence. Many media outlets (including F365) pondered over whether he was the solution, in the aftermath of his performances at the end of last season. I think he’s best on the wing. See point (d) below.
c) Also following on from the above two points and a further case for Giroud’s inclusion today was the use of Ramsey as the No.10/ second striker/ furthest forward midfielder. The Ramsey of two seasons ago was at his most effective playing off of Giroud’s flicks and clever touches. This is arguably Giroud’s biggest asset (besides his physical presence). He brings the likes of Ramsey into the attacking third, thereby creating multiple attacking opportunities. With Walcott, you get the sense that your only chance is with a him running onto a pass played behind the defence. Without Ozil and with 10 men Newcastle defending deep, this was not going to happen today.
d) It’s also curious to note that we have moments in a game where we revert to Invincibles style one touch football and carve out chances and then forget it ever happened and pass the ball aimlessly. The latter is getting annoying. In relation to point (b), if Walcott is to be played a striker then we must play quick, direct, one touch football and not a slow passing game that allows our opponents to sit deep thereby completely negating the point of Walcott’s pace and ability to run in behind them.
e) Gabriel and Koscielny must surely continue to be our first choice defensive partnership with BFG as a back up. The only downside to this is an injury to both (which is very realistic in the Arsenal world) would leave us with Chambers and BFG- arguably the slowest defensive pairing in the League.
f) Come on Wenger, let’s smash that transfer window and get a CM/CDM and a striker in the Benzema/ Lewandowski/ Cavani mould. It appears that City are this season’s Chelsea-of-last-season. Let’s make sure we’re not 12 points behind them before we go on a run.
Deepak (Well done, Pardiola!)
Spurs Going Backwards?
Dear Mr Levy
As a Spurs supporter I have a few questions.
In 2010, we had a midfield of Bale, Modric, Van der Vaart, Lennon and Sandro. Pretty good. Most of those players have been sold and generated 138m quid.
Yesterday we had a midfield of Bentaleb, Dier, Mason, Dembele and Chadli. I’ll do the opposition fans job for them – ‘Who are ya, who are ya?!’ How did this happen?
10 years ago we had a midfield choice of Carrick, Lennon, Danny Murphy, Jenas, Hudd, Tainio and Edgar Davids. Have we gone backwards? It feels like it.
Jonathan, Gold Coast, Australia
No Laughing At Vardy For England
It took me a little while, but i finally realised that most people who write into Football365’s mailbox are fans of the ‘bigger’ clubs of the Premier League. So after watching last season again as a neutral (I’m a Blackburn fan unfortunately) I laughed, but was at a the same time a bit surprised by how people reacted at Jamie Vardy being picked after both his and Leicester’s great run of form at the end of last season.
After the first 3 games, on pure form he deserves to be in the English set up as much as anyone. Townsend hasn’t even gotten on the bench yet, ‘The Ox’ is a bench warmer then looked average against Newcastle, and Walcott now looks a striker under Walcott. So why is it a joke that Vardy be a genuine England player? He can play wide extremely easily, his entire game is based on pace and harassing defenders at all costs. Plus he also looks very good in the middle of the park. If he was great in the Championship and a ‘bigger’ club signed him and he showed his wares there 90% of uneducated football fans wouldn’t have much a bad word about him playing international football, yet he comes from Leicester so he’s looked down upon ? This is a genuine problem i always find with English football, we build people up and knock them down incredibly quickly but at the same time we don’t actually seem to want anymore decent who rising up from smaller clubs unless they are the typical type thats been praised, and capped, from a young age.
Jamie Vardy is more than good enough. Get behind him, he could do some special stuff.
Don’t Forget Us
We City fans tend not to write into the Mailbox much, but thought I would let everyone know we’re doing just fine thanks.
Champions Elect? Stop It
There’s a lot of commentary going around, at least around me, regarding Man City and how they’re already looking like an unstoppable force that will surely take a leisurely stroll to the title. Slow the f**k down people.
Look back just 12 months and you’ll find that Chelsea were being crowned Champions back in August as well. But, as you’ll probably recall, by January, Chelsea and City were level on points. Yes, Chelsea did go on to walk the league, but that was more a result of the incompetence of the teams below them (particularly City in Jan/Feb) rather than the “Chelsea juggernaut”.
It’s a long season, and everyone should take the proverbial chill pill and wait till we’re at least 10-12 games in before jumping to any conclusions.
In other news – I’ve lost complete faith in the Arsenal strikeforce. Even Alexis looks lost.
Walker On Sunshine
Kyle Walker is a better defender in the oppositions box than he is his own.
TGWolf (…. …. …. for the opposition) THFC
Whoever keeps booking Robbie Savage for both BT Sport and BBC should be fired for negligence.
Another Alternative Prem
Dave, Spurs must be one of the many brainwashed children that think Sky invented football in 1992. I’ll see his Derby 7-16 Southampton PL seasons and raise him Derby 65-39 Southampton Top Flight seasons.
The fairest way to do this would surely be to go by these numbers, giving a league of:
1) Everton – 113 seasons
2) Aston Villa – 105
3) Liverpool – 101
4) Arsenal – 99
5) Man U – 91
6) Man C – 87
7) Newcastle – 85
= Sunderland – 85
9) Chelsea – 81
= Tottenham – 81
11) West Brom – 79
12) Bolton – 73
13) Blackburn – 72
14) Sheff Wed – 66
15) Derby – 65
16) Wolves – 63
17) Middlesb. – 60
= Sheff Utd – 60
= Stoke – 60
20) West Ham – 58
Tut tut, Mr Degsy.
Someone needs to go to the naughty corner.
Bad news, I think I have found Degsy sleeping rough. Broke and praying for Rooney to score on Sunday.
Dont worry, I threw him a couple of quid.