The football is back and we are loving it. Mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org after you have watched Sunday’s games.
Have a few words of advice for you Jurgen:
Sort out the bloody defence
Don’t care how you do it but I can’t watch this muck any longer.
…See when players win a penalty and all their team mates run up to congratulate them…well they’re going to start doing that when they win a corner against us.
Vinnie Brownlow, LFC, Glasgow
On Liverpool insanity
One famous definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.
So if you play the same defence as last season, in the same way, guess what happens? You defend the same! If we couldn’t defend set pieces last year, guess what again? We won’t defend them this year either!
What in the name of unholy hell were we doing not buying at *least* two new defenders? City were rubbish defensively last year – so they bought a new defence. Simples yes?
The market’s crazy , I get that. Klopp only wants his first choice and I get that too. But I refuse to believe there wasn’t *anyone* available who could have improved us considerably.
This will really help persuade Coutinho we’re moving forward and he should stay…
James, Liverpool (Help me Virgil Van Dijk, you’re my only hope!)
* Jurgen Klopp has stated repeatedly that improving the players you have is more important than buying new ones. Based on that performance, I cannot see how he has improved any of our defenders.
* Moreno should not be anywhere near the first team. Still.
* TAA looks set to give Clyne a real battle for his place this season.
* Mignolet is a good keeper, not an excellent one. Unfortunately, Chelski, Spurs and Yoo all have excellent keepers, putting us at an immediate disadvantage.
* Lovren & Matip both seem to need someone next to them telling them what to do. Which leads us to…
* …Van Dijk. Wow, we really screwed the pooch. We desperately need him. Or, and this is a key point, someone like him. He’s not the only good centre back in the world. Jurgen, buy someone, please.
* This performance (yes, I know it’s only one game) makes Coutinho expendable. We have weaknesses that are more important to our chance of success than keeping him. If Barca were to offer something like £100m + Rakitic(!), then take it.
* Back to Clippety, I can’t understand the thought process in giving Mignolet £80,000 a week then buying Karius, and giving Lovren £100,000 a week and then trying to spend £60,000,000 on his replacement.
* Sakho. He’s better than Lovren. Just saying.
* Did FSG really turn down £28,000,000 for Sakho, knowing that Clippety won’t play him? There’s driving a hard bargain, and there’s just plain dumb.
* I dislike him as much as every other Pool fan, but Fat Sam should be offered a coaching role. He’d sort us out defensively, especially at corners, where we are laughably bad. He wouldn’t have the stress, travel or long hours of management, and think how much credit he’d get for turning us around. Worth a try, surely?
Did you think there was going to be 16 of these? I don’t get paid for this, and the kids want to watch cartoons on Netflix.
Stew, LFC, Chicago (opening day of the season is when I’m most homesick for England)
The root of the problem
Here is my theory as to why clubs like Liverpool, City will never be good at defence. It’s because their managers will never punish those players who make defensive errors. Klopp will never bench Firmino for that error he made at defending that corner, Mourinho would have. Klopp favours attack over defence and we all know it. That is why he would let these mistakes go. Mourinho on the other hand demands that all his players be disciplined while defending. This leads to his players being alert, knowing that a mistake while defending could cost then their spot.
I have complete faith in Klopp and actually love to see my team play such beautiful attacking football, but I can’t deny that conceding such stupid goals doesn’t boil my blood. I believe that Van Dijk would go a long way in helping our defence but we need to improve our overall concentration while defending. We can’t concede such stupid goals not when we’re in Europe. Hopefully things will improve.
Zaki (Coutinho will stay) India
Thoughts on Liverpool v Watford
* I won’t say too much about set piece defending as F365 have got it covered but for the love of god, why was Firmino expected to cover the central part of the box for Watford’s first? Zonal marking clearly doesn’t work, or at least not with these players. Klopp has to take responsibility and make a change.
* Watford started really well, packing the midfield and defending resolutely in front of their own box. They didn’t give Liverpool the chance to get settled on the ball and were the better side in the first half. Marcos Silva again deserves credit for creating an effective play style and Watford will trouble a few teams this season. Of course Liverpool were missing important players today, Clyne, Coutinho and L’allant (Sturridge too maybe?) But they still had a strong team out there and got bossed for a good portion of the game. Firmino was anonymous because of a total lack of decent service in the first half.
* Emre Can is representative of Liverpool as a whole. He’s either great or bloody awful and in the first half today he was rotten. It feels a little unfair to single him out as the entire team was rubbish but the number of fouls he conceded combined with wayward passes was infuriating. That said, his flick for Mane’s goal was great and he did improve in the second period. However Grujic should definitely be given some more minutes. He’s the type of player who can add bite and pick a good pass which Liverpool needed today.
* Alberto Moreno is not a left back nor is he good enough for any side with any sort of serious ambition. He has to be the most tactically unaware player I’ve ever seen. At one point he passed the ball to Mane who was facing his own goal and then ran beyond him leaving Mane isolated and with no outlet for a pass and Liverpool lost the ball. Again.
* Alexander-Arnold had a decent game, given the somewhat chaotic nature of the contest but replacing him with Gomez seemed like an odd move. Liverpool needed to shore up and see out the game so removing one inexperienced defender for another was strange.
* I wonder to what extent does the high tempo Liverpool play with affect their composure. While it is essential for the pressing play style it seems to lead to stray passes, wayward shots or players running down blind alleys,. It’s great when it clicks sometimes just not giving away the ball cheaply should be the goal.
* Fully expecting the Arsenal v Liverpool games this season to set some kind of record for mistakes leading to goals.
* Finally, football is back! Already looking forward to Winners and Losers.
Same old Liverpool, always collapsing…
Been on my holibobs (so apologies I have been somewhat MIA from all things Mailbox related and my very occasional evisceration of no-marks on the YourSay boards) but now back. And how heart-warming to see that the Liverpool of the PL era is back too! Mesmerising in attack, stupefying in defence. ’twas ever thus…
I have always viewed us as [one of] the great entertainers, probably alongside the Arsenal. But the difference being with us you can reel off the breathless Cup Finals, the incredible comebacks, the famous European nights at Anfield etc, etc. All great and would not swop some of those memories for all the tea in China. But it is precisely because we have been so abject at defending for so long that these titanic efforts are required! Think of the calamitous ‘keepers, some of the abject CB pairings, how long have the FB berths been an issue? Of course, the difference with the Arse being they cracked the whole mean defence thing for a while whereas today I am not sure we have ever seemed so far away.
History is always revisionist. I say this as I started sort of going to Anfield at a very young age so caught the tail end of some of those all-conquering Liverpool teams as it was the early 80s. And there has been a load of guff written about those teams. Pass And Move and all that nonsense. Sure those teams were sprinkled with absolute stardust but most were proper hard bastards too! This is not a harking for hobnail boots and rolled-up newspaper for shinnys, “when I were a lad” missive but those great Liverpool teams earned the right to play you off the park first. Try and kick them, they’d kick you back with interest. Let them play and you’d be chasing shadows for 90 minutes.
For the last quarter of century if you give Liverpool time and space you might be in real trouble. But defend deep, get up in their stuff and wait for a set piece and you are half-way there. It strikes me as over-simplifying it to state that VVD is the panacea for our ills and whilst Lovren is the very epitome of a goal headstart the problems are collective. Migs being in his comfort zone and a real flapper that makes even Calamity look assured doesn’t help those immediately in front of him.
I know the Spice Boys get dogs abuse for somewhat being the benchmark for unfulfilled potential but as Roy Keane highlights in one of his autobios it was always Liverpool he feared the most. But Roy knew we lacked the mental fibre to be champions, to be consistent. As reliably as Gary Vance waxing lyrical about a woman’s place being in the kitchen and decrying the standard of the recent Euros (whilst forgetting how crap he is at footie) we will tear you apart if given the opportunity but put it in the mixer and we crumple and fold like wet brown paper. It is almost as if it is so ingrained now as to be in our DNA.
The Chelsea result will potentially overshadow just how unforgivable all three goals we conceded today were but you would bet that their result was likely an anomaly. Bewitching in attack at times (minus Lallana, Sturridge and Coutinho) but it is the cheapness of the goals against that should always temper expectations with Liverpool. And who better than Fat Sam up next to really twist the knife!?
I would also like to say good luck Phil! I firmly believe a behemoth like Barca will really showcase his exceptional talent. In fact I remember fondly asking a number of times to hear again from the chap who scolded Liverpool fans for getting a bit giddy (as is our way) when we thought we had a player on our hand early doors that Inter only sold ‘cos he was crap and it was a paltry 8.5M ‘cos he was crap. His cluelessness makes me think he would definitely had MUFC after his name but we never did hear from him again.
Anyway, good luck you little Brazilian maestro. Thanks for the memories and the unending effort even if you felt you had to do what you do as we were always likely to leak a few…
Gregory Whitehead, LFC
Are Chelsea just acting like a normal club?
I hate to sound like a scouser and talk of net spend but when you think in the last eight months we have:
In midfield, swapped Matic, Chalobah, Mikel and Oscar for Bakyako (With a profit of around £60 million and a saving on wages).
In defence we have swapped Ivanovic, Terry, Ake and Zouma for Christiansen and Ruddiger (At a net cost of around £14 million but a svaving of around that on the wage bill).
Up front we have bought Morata and sold Cuadrado, Traore and Bamford (Net spendng around £35 million but should get that for Costa)
Then what we are seeing is Chelsea becoming a decent business and launching a new stadium and like other teams in that position moving football to second place in its priorities.
Chelsea got off lightly…
Why did Fabregas get a second yellow for his challenge yesterday and not a red? It was as bad, if not worse, than Cahill’s.
Any reckless or dangerous foul should be a red card, irrespective of timing or previous events in the match. Far too often do you see players getting a second yellow, instead of a straight red card This is a massive let off for the player as the bans tend to be one game for two yellows, and three for a straight red.
Is there a rule I am unaware of, or is it just a case of referees mis-applying the current laws?
You can rule out Chelsea now
Like the commentator said during Chelsea 2-3 Burnley, only Man United have lost the opening game of a Premier League campaign and went on to become champions. So if you’re a betting man, you can count Chelsea out of the running to win the title even if it’s only the first game of the season….thank me later.
Making it about Mourinho
Should depleted Chelsea not get a result against Spurs next weekend (highly likely to be fair), I assume in the balance of fairness that Conte will be levelled with the same amount of criticism and abuse that Mourinho endured in the tail-end of his last stint at Chelsea?
In 2015 they were defending champions and failed to properly invest in the squad, which coupled with the Caneiro incident, snowballed into José’s inglorious departure.
Now while Bakayoko and Morata should prove to be good signings (Rudiger didn’t exactly look too sharp on his debut though), the rest of the squad is so under-cooked right now for various reasons that the match-day squad vs Burnley contained such household names as Jeremie Boga, Charley Musonda and Fikayo Tomori.
Imagine if Mourinho shipped off a first-team player to a direct rival, and a host of promising youngsters to boot, and produced the exact same squad on opening day? And if his side’s discipline imploded in an embarrassing home defeat to the same extent it done so on Saturday? His head would roll.
Imagine if Mourinho basically told his star striker he wasn’t part of his plans any more VIA TEXT? How dare he!
Imagine if Mourinho was previously charged with match-fixing? Probably wouldn’t get a top job again.
I guarantee Conte won’t get the same level of vitriol spewed his direction though, should the start pan out like 2015. Even if he leaves in a strop in frustration at the lack of transfer action, he’ll probably be portrayed more as “mis-understood” than at fault.
Just look at her face…
Watching MOTD and Mounie just scored Huddersfield’s third. I’m grinning like a loon because all I can think about is what Winty’s face must look like right now. Must be a picture. Hope you thoroughly enjoyed it.
Richard (Jolly hockey sticks and AFC) London
Doubting Winty’s Terrier credentials
So Arsenal win a home game in the 90th minute and get an article extolling them and yet there is no mention of Huddersfield being top of the table. Which one of these teams is Sarah claiming she supports again?
(Sarah is a Huddersfield Town fan but she is also the editor of a website that needs clicks so there will be lots more articles on Arsenal, Liverpool and Man United than the mighty table-topping Terriers – Ed)
Never change, F365
‘Savage – who transferred from Blackburn to Derby for £2m at the age of 34 – bemoaned average players moving for large sums of money’
This is why I keep coming back to F365. Never change, guys – I love your website more than Sarah Winterburn loves the Premier League table today.
Chris Bridgeman, Kingston Upon Thames