Jordan Henderson should be first out of immobile Liverpool midfield as Man Utd fans shrug

Date published: Monday 3rd October 2022 2:58 - Editor F365

Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson

Manchester United fans are pretty calm about the derby defeat while Liverpool fans debate whether there are issues at the club.

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Liverpool need a whole new midfield
Klopp has taken note of all the clamouring. This dreadlocked version of Trent is definitely not stuck to the touchline and putting in crosses (like afro Trent used to do). For one, all those glorious cross field balls to the left back… How many have you seen him do this season?

Our midfield doesn’t have the industry to still operate in Klopp’s system. Workmanlike, tireless, self-sacrificing. We don’t have the legs to fill the spots when our fullbacks go forward. Thiago, Hendo… the mainstays, are not mobile. It must really devastate our opponents when we are chasing a game and we send out James Milner to warm up. Elliot and Carvalho are wingers. They are not central mids.

Henderson should realise his duty to terminate his contract at the end of this season. He’s been an incredible captain and driving force, but he needs to go. Milly must go. Keita must go. Ox is still on our books for what can only be ceremonial purposes. We need new energy in midfield.

Just a final note – people saying it’s not due to Mane leaving, of course it plays a part. Mane’s movement is different to Diaz. Diaz stays on the wing. Mane came inside. Mane always wanted the ball, was always prepared to take on his man. He wasn’t afraid to put up his hand when we struggled. Mane never disappeared in games. Diaz does. Diaz has all the qualities but he is no Mane. Not yet at least.
Wik, Pretoria (can only think that Klopp thinks Darwin is Origi, him now sporting Origi’s 27 shirt), LFC


Actually, Liverpool were great v Brighton
There is no doubt Liverpool have had a poor start to the season. To argue otherwise would be a fool’s game.

However, despite the nonsense in Ian King’s article, the reason there are no ‘Cracked Badges’ or sense of doom is because in the game yesterday, Liverpool…… played well.

OK, let’s take the first 25 minutes out of that because they were awful for that bit.

After that they completely dominated the game. They were the best side by a mile. As, one could argue they should be, given the financial and player disparity.

Brighton were fantastic in that opening period and seemed to take Liverpool by surprise. Butterfly effect puts paid to any notion they could have been 4 down, were it not for Alisson. But I get the point people make when they say that.

After that it was the game we would have all expected.

When analysing the game, I struggle to understand how people like Ian and others (including the Live commentators) can’t see what is literally in front of their eyes.

Liverpool didn’t get the result expected but at no point did they look ‘laden footed’ and to suggest Van Dijk ‘looked like he couldn’t be arsed’ is comical.

Liverpool have issues, conceding first too many times is the primary one.

Liverpool, one could argue, are at the same point Klopp was with his Dortmund team in 2014/15, but as Hans-Joachim Watzke said after Klopp’s departure “Maybe it would have been better if we had replaced the entire team – and not the coach” with the recent arrivals of Diaz and Nunez maybe that’s what Liverpool are starting to do and they’re back to Klopp’s first season?
Graham, LFC


Things still going in right direction for Man Utd
First, let me be clear. No one expected United to win. We are a few months into a rebuild, while City are a polished machine who just added their missing piece. We know we’re a long way off them. We wanted to see how close we are, we hoped for better, but it was good to face the challenge. It teaches the players and manager what they need to do.

Second, City were as incredible as we were poor. Saying we were just rubbish misses the point about how good City are and were. That pass from Kevin was just impossible. Every player on that pitch is top-notch, carefully selected and trained. Haaland was amazing, although seeing Eriksen matched against him at the corner was more than a little odd. However, after the first goal, we did seem to wake up even if we were trying to hard for the Hollywood pass. It all seemed a bit desperate, maybe with an awareness that Rashford only had so much gas in the tank after injury. Unfortunately, we then succumbed to the beast before the late revival.

Third, Dion at Arsenal might be enjoying himself, but he will recall that we beat them recently. I’d be careful of too much schadenfreude. If we can beat you guys, think what they will do.

Fourth, people talk about money invested and that’s completely fair, but for City that was mostly under the eyes of one manager with a vision. United have had five managers since Sir Alex spending that money in different and often terrible ways. Things are going the right way for United, but it’s not an instant success, it never is for any club.

Fifth, let’s talk about Shaw. Can people stop pretending that he’s rubbish? Malacia may have the spot for the moment, but Shaw is an excellent player who offers a lot to the team. It’s very nice to have a number of players competing for spots, but we need more for other spots, and that will come.

The Everton game should be interesting.


Harry Kane and what might have been
It’s fair to say that Haaland is as good as the rest of us feared, and will probably rip up the record books this season, fitness permitting.

But please spare a thought for poor Harry Kane(pen). He must be looking on with a large tinge of disappointment, as I have no doubts that if Kane had completed his move to City, then he would be producing similar, if not better statistics, along with pocketing a Premier league winners medal and dare I say it, a Champions league medal as well?

Whilst Haaland gets the deserved credit, KDB is a cheat code. Makes it look so easy, and seems like a nice guy to boot!
Chris, South Wales (suffering pool fan)


…Imagine Levy let Kane go to City last summer. Haaland probably would have gone to Madrid and then he’d be Barcelona’s problem.
Silvio Dante


Haaland was always going to be brilliant
I wrote a long and grumpy email after the Community Shield, calling out Ian King for his ridiculous take. If you don’t remember, he claimed that the match had shown how our fears over the Haaland-bot were overblown and that he was not a good fit for this City team.

My mail said a bunch of things, spoke about Man City fitness, about how the robot had had two absolutely gilt edge chances, about how VVD was the centre half best equipped to stop Haaland, and how if this was an “abject” performance, then this was evidence that he’ll succeed, not fail.

And all of this was as a Liverpool fan.

I resisted. I deleted the email and moved on. Because, let’s be honest, it’s just an opinion piece. My grump was silly. Then Haaland scored a brace. And I resisted. An assist against Bournemouth showed he was part of the team. Another goal. A hattrick. I resisted. Another hattrick. Silence. Two more goals. And then this hattrick. No more resisting.

Ian King you bloody numpty.

There, out of my system. You’ve been told. Now excuse me as I avoid sharing how I, in the same week that said article came out, told everyone who would listen that the woes of Leicester were overblown and last season was just an injury-fuelled blip, and how they’d be back in the top six, guaranteed.
Andrew M (Grudgebearer) Streatham


Stop fawning over City
As always, the British Press are falling over themselves this morning waxing lyrical about City destroying United yesterday. Yet when Liverpool arguably achieved a better result at Old Trafford last season the media narrative was all about how bad United were. Double standards methinks.

On another note, I’d love to see Haaland up against Joe Redmond of St Pats in the League Of Ireland. He wouldn’t get a sniff.
Seán ( Joe Redmond is that good honestly) Dublin


Ed on Palace
Last weekend I encountered the most intense, aggressive pitchside coach, in charge of the team my son was playing. He was barracking the official and attempting to micro-manage the game for his players, constantly barking instructions. What’s all the more bizarre is they were playing cricket.

*It’s not quite symmetry but there are a few similarities in the details. Crystal Palace’s previous Premier League fixture was due to be away at Brighton & Hove, their first game after Graham Potter’s departure, but it was cancelled because of transport strikes. This fixture, Potter’s first Premier League game in charge of Chelsea, took place amid rail chaos.

*Palace have had a terrible record against Chelsea in recent years, their last victory against the Pensioners coming in 2017 at the end of the worst start to a top flight season by any team ever. I’m beginning to think that was a bit of a fluke against a wider context of regularly getting beaten by a significantly richer club who can afford entire squads of better players.

*To his credit, Patrick Vieira didn’t take the easy option of picking an ultra-defensive lineup, instead picking four skilful players (and Jordan Ayew) as his front five. Joel Ward started at centre-back in place of the injured Joachim Andersen, perhaps a surprising move for a back four, but then moved to right-back following Nathaniel Clyne’s injury.

That said, Palace’s main strategy was not to play on the front foot, but to counterattack with skill and speed. While the Pensioners dominated possession, the sides had the same number of shots on target and Palace even had more corners. It was a counterattack that led to the opening goal. Odsonne Edouard started a move by intercepting a pass and moving the ball out to the right, then finishing it by getting on to the end of a cross from Ayew.

*The next flashpoint was another occasion where Ayew got the better of the Chelsea defence. This time, Thiago Silva lost his footing and deliberately handled the ball to impede the Ghanaian’s progress. A free kick was awarded and the Brazilian was shown a yellow card. It’s a complicated one and it’s easy to see why Palace felt the caution was too soft. It was cynical play with no effort whatsoever to play the ball fairly, his sole intention was to impede his opponent’s progress; while Ben Chilwell was level with Ayew, he was too far away to reach him before a shot would have been taken, so a red card for Silva would have been justified. It seemed a bit like an umpire’s call in cricket, in that there wasn’t really enough to upgrade it to a dismissal, but had a red card been shown, I don’t think it would have been downgraded.

*Such is the way football works, a player takes full advantage of their reprieve, and sure enough, just a few minutes later, Silva’s knockdown provided an assist for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to fire home having got the better of Ward, who isn’t a natural centre-back.

*In the end, it seemed inevitable once Conor Gallagher came on as a substitute that he would have a hand in the result. After all, part of why he was sent on loan in the first place to a team where he would play an integral role is so that he could go back to Chelsea capable of grabbing games by the scruff of the neck. The Pensioners had looked most likely to secure a winner, pushing their hosts further and further back. We should expect to see that in October’s goal of the month competition.

*It’s hard to know what to make of this start to Palace’s season. Their seven games have yielded one win, three draws and three defeats. However, those three defeats came against the Arsenal (1st), Manchester City (2nd) and Chelsea (5th), so should not be cause for alarm, and of their draws, two came away at Anfield and St James’s Park against sides with significantly loftier ambitions. Even the other draw, at home to Brentford, is not hugely disappointing. And yet, if Nottingham Forest beat Leicester City tonight, the Eagles will be in the relegation zone.

I don’t think anyone is panicking yet, or at least, I hope no one at the club is panicking yet. However, beginning with the visit of Leeds United next Sunday, they have seven games before the World Cup, against teams with an average current league position of 16. As unlikely as it is, 21 points from those is not an impossible task. Alternatively, if there’s a poor return from through those games, I don’t think anyone would be surprised if the club looked at making changes. It’s never dull at Selhurst Park.
Ed Quoththeraven


Bye-bye Bruno
Happy Lage got the chop we have been running around like headless chickens for months. No game plan and he’s lost the players a long time ago. What happened with Hoever and also Coady we will never know the truth but he was ruining the club and after so many years of excitement being back in the premiership the 2022 has been awful. I know we had our injuries but the formations, player choices just bad.

Taking our most creative player and playing him in cb when we have toti and mosquera on the bench…..
Hope they get the right manager in now and we save our season
Colin, WWFC, Dublin

Six seconds please
Enough is enough. This trend of goal keepers catching the ball, dropping to their knees with it, then dropping to the floor laying flat out on the ground has to stop. It seems every single referee has completely forgotten that keepers can only hold the ball for 6 seconds. Why is this law not applied? Its time wasting at its best. Just start carding keepers. Fans at the ground and at home pay good money to watch 90mins of football, not 60min and a load of time wasting which seems the norm now.
Paul – London

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