29-04-2006, 06:21 AM
For pride and prejudice: CHE v MU
Title clincher or title pinchers?
Well, this is the big Match of the week folks. But deep down, Fergie knows he has little chance to override Chelski's title claims this season. If not at Stamford Bridge, the Blues will likely seal it at their next match at Blackburn. So, its all abt MU's pride in not losing to the champions-elect in the EPL this season. But Mourinho will be prejudiced to think that he has the title all sealed up because of their excellent home record and their desire to clinch it at the expense of their great rivals in front of their fans. We'll hv to see who will hv the better of the other tonite then.
29-04-2006, 07:59 AM
wow teeque, it seems that u have the insider version of owengate, u good friend of benitez ah??
I would love to see mu win as to break the invincibility of Stamfordbridge, but i will loss my god's t shirt
29-04-2006, 09:10 AM
Talking about Fowler, the 'rumour' is he is 60% certain to sign for one more season ...but I think he will continue to play as a support role. Who can you see as the next 'Ian Rush' that Liverpool will try to buy ? This red team surely
Originally Posted by chsum
enjoy hitting the ball to his supporters/oppositions (in the stand) than in the net
29-04-2006, 04:28 PM
I hope Fowler stays, the striker I see going out should be Morientes as he do not seems to fit into english style very well, he seems lost.
If u look at Benitez style of play, he rotates the striker very often even when they r winning(not so much for back 4) hence u don't get 20 goals striker in Liverpool now, even when u score 2 goals u get sub n deny a hattrick, most top scorer hates it that is why liverpool have problem scoring more goals, the striker don't get into the scoring rythem then they got sub, even if they do they get sub.
29-04-2006, 06:33 PM
That is why Benitez is fretting at his attacking options or the lack of it. Because of this deficiency, most of the Reds formations are centred ard Gerrard and the back four. If you noticed in most of the Reds matches, its almost always a 4-5-1 or 4-4-1-1 with that lone striker, either Crouch or Morientes, upfront. Depending on fit players available, Gerrard will be played either just behind that lone striker or on the right because the Reds lack a right winger. Garcia and Cisse are certainly not wingers as they are being played there as plug gap measures. If either the lone striker or Gerrard is unavailable, Benitez has to switch his options, and strikers, around to plug those gaps. Therefore, its no surprise that we see him always rotating his striking options. If we see Benitez fielding 2 strikers upfront, normally Crouch and Morientes as favorite choice, then we know he is confident of winning that match (most likely against a weaker opponent) and also mainly because, Gerrard and Alonso are playing in the middle with Riise on their left and Garcia on their right. This is his prefered formation if all players are available.
Then, why Crouch and Morientes, and not Cisse and Fowler upfront, you might ask? Simple. Look at the team and tell me who are most of the goal scorers in the list? Its Gerrard, Garcia, Riise and sometimes Alonso. Crouch's and Morientes' roles are not a goal scoring role but a 'target man' role. Both of them are not goalscorers extraordinaire and Benitez is using them as target men roles to knock on balls for the midfielders to score. Cisse was the only traditional out and out striker but he wasnt on form at the time so Benitez has to change his strategy. Fowler is in the same role as Cisse but he is playing a more supporting role now because of his age and lack of fitness.
So, naturally, Benitez would like to hv more options in his attacking line up with better qualified personnel but funding has been his problem. A world class striker cost a lot and unfortunately, by Benitez's standards, Cisse is not up to par.
Erm...no, I'm not related to Benitez or am friends with him. I'm just able to analyse his game plans better with the inside knowledge that I hv frm the club and the game. Benefits of membership and friendship with ardent supporters and members of the Liverpool Supporters Club here. In line with the theme of our club sponsor, we are 'Part of the game'.
29-04-2006, 07:19 PM
Special Merseyside Derby: LIV v EVE '86
There will be a replay of a Special Merseyside derby of the '86 FA Cup match between these 2 clubs on Monday. In 1986, King Kenny was the player/manager, the Reds made history with their first League and FA Cup double and Everton was a footballing force then. OK, we know who was the striking predator for the Reds at that time but tell me, who was the very big name striker playing for Everton at that time?
Recognise who these greats are?
This was certainly a historic match between these two teams and it is now being replayed for a good cause - the Marina Dalglish Appeal and organised by Kenny Dalglish himself. The ex-players will be there with the likes of Rush, Steve Nicol, Grobbellaar, Whelan, Hansen, Molby, Craig Johnston etc. No doubt these players are past their prime but still, it will be exciting to relive the memories and watch these great players in action, whether they still hv 'it' in them. Unfortunately, the match will not be shown on Malaysian TV but fans can watch the match 'live' at the Liverpool website with a paid subscription. If not, just follow the commentary and match reports on the site.
29-04-2006, 08:52 PM
hopefully people are not complaining we talked too much about the reds
among all liverpool favourties sons, I like Dalglish most .... it was tragic to see him left years ago
there is a big differene between how present and past liverpool ... the old liverpool always have a 'target man' to put balls into net (think keegan, johnson, rush, fowler or owen ...... or 'lesser known' like aldrige, wash etc) and the new one has a 'target man' to hold the ball don't know about you, it is just not the same for me. I saw valencia played (when they were under benitez) ... it was more eye pleasing than the current liverpool team
30-04-2006, 02:57 AM
Yes, the Dalglish days were the best period of football for Liverpool. The current team is still very much works-in-progress and hopefully when more funds are available, the other pieces of the jigsaw will be put in place. We are still lacking personnel in certain deparments and the critical one is the 'target man'.
30-04-2006, 04:34 AM
Match review for tonite's games
So, the title is all but sealed by Chelsea and there were three top draw, quality goals that sank MU. It was clear that MU's midfield was not working and they depended on a young Rooney to make something out of the game. And to think that England's WC challenge also depends on that same shoulders of one so young. Yes, he is a very talented player no doubt but to pin a nation's hopes on this young boy to spearhead the attack is just asking too much. Look at what happened today. He was man marked and being kicked ard as if to rile him up to get at his negative side. And, he was injured, serious enough to provoke apprehension all round the stadium and audiences alike as to his and England's WC aspirations. As if that wasnt enough, we saw how Terry hobbled on grimly for the best part of the game and Mourinho didnt seem to want to take him off, even if they were leading by 2-0. That, imo, is very questionable of Mourinho's tactics and agenda. But, the game was all won in midfield and play centred ard another such sparkling England playmaking talent, Joe Cole. He scored one and created another to add to Gallas' early goal to wrap up the Premiership for the champions. If Cole can maintain this form in the WC, he could be the man to watch for in addition to Gerrard, Lampard and Beckham in the engine room of England's midfield. The worries would now be on a toothless attack of an unfit Owen and the injury status of Rooney.
The other stories were the relegation battles being fought out by Portsmouth and Birmingham. At the end of it all, Portsmouth survived with an away win and Birmingham relegated by not getting a result at home. It was a tale of Harry and his 'Houdini act' in getting Portsmouth off the bottom 3 and this time, survived the relegation battles again. Birmingham just didnt cut it when they did not even score enough goals this season and left the manager to wonder abt his 'impotent' strikeforce. With a donkey in Heskey, what does he expect?
Blackburn still hung on to their 6th placing in their hunt for European participation by snatching an away win at Charlton. But Bolton is still closely snapping on Blackburn's heels for that 6th place and both clubs hv still 2 matches more to play. However, Blackburn has to entertain the Premiership champions next on Tuesday nite and Bolton hv the easier fixtures, first at Spurs tomoro nite and then entertain Boro at home on Wed. IMO, I think Blackburn will now intensify their push for that European spot as they are a good five points ahead of Bolton and they need just a draw frm the Chelsea match. Evidently frm tonite's excellent performance and the Bellamy threat, Blackburn's revival is on the cards.
Sadly, for the Addicks, Curbishley had tendered his resignation as their manager and will no longer be their boss next season. What do you think? Would this be an indication of the English FA's confirmation of a candidate for the post of England's manager? Or could it be that he has decided he has taken his beloved club as far as he can and feels he should make way for fresh blood and leadership to take the club to new heights? Whats your take?
Boro fell frm the heights of qualification for a UEFA Cup Final to a thud on the EPL turf with their home loss to last season's miracle team, Everton. What is it with them? Good enough to beat the second best of Europe but not up to it in English premier league? Liverpool won comfortably at Anfield with Villa and the team's midfield lynchpin capped his season with his usual captain's performance. This top class performance will definitely sound his intentions at the FA Cup Final in 2 weeks time and in the WC next mth. I believe tonite's game will be the same formation Benitez will use for the FA Cup Final match, barring injuries. Minimise the defensive lapses and the Cup will be the Reds for the taking.
Some analysis for the FA Cup and Champions League Final to come next week.
30-04-2006, 05:12 AM
Latest Rooney injury news. He will be out for 6 weeks!
England gone case lar like this???
30-04-2006, 09:27 AM
[QUOTE= With a donkey in Heskey, what does he expect?
Sadly, for the Addicks, Curbishley had tendered his resignation as their manager and will no longer be their boss next season. [/QUOTE]
That 'donkey' used to be playing for liverpool ....... he was scoringly freely in Leicester days, however was transforning to holding role for Liverpool (and at times playing in the wing) to provide for Owen ...... since then, seems to be losing his scoring touch. I like Heskey, honest hardworker ---- just did not get the 'break' he so desperately needed.
Alan, I think just have enough of the Addicks ..... He is the third/fourth in line for England job and will get it if everyone else in front of the queue reject the job
Sad to see robbo and bruce lost in the battle; but happy for harry of course ... the team I like to see relegated most is villa; o'leary is losing the plot
30-04-2006, 10:23 AM
Teequee. Thank you for the good write-up in Post #666. However if I may make a slight correction or add-on to your report:
The BBC News quoted him as saying:
Skipper John Terry, who appeared to play most of the match with a leg injury, was equally jubilant afterwards, saying: "All season we've proved how good we are. "At times we've had to dig in and graft, but we can do that as well as play. To win the league two years on the trot is a special achievement. The crowd have been unbelievable and this is for them." On his injury, the defender added: "There was no way I was going off, not a chance. I've just got a bit of blood on it I think, but I was desperate to stay on and enjoy the moment."
Thus it was not Jose Mourinho not wanting to take him off. At 3-0, there was no reason to sacrifice their skipper which could possibly led to serious injury that may affect their preparation for next season. Normally an injured player would signal to the bench to be taken off. John Terry wanted to play. On another note, Wayne Rooney's late challenge on him could actually see him out of England for the World Cup and at the end of the match, the commentator did say that John Terry was indeed a big man to be concerned about Wayne Rooney when the latter could - very rashly - put him out of the World Cup.
I absolutely agree with you that it is ridiculous a great footballing country could and is going to put all their hopes on the shoulders of a young man (and in my view, a football genuis). Wayne Rooney still has demons riding on both shoulders and his temper was a suspect towards the later part of the game. You can see the petulance in his facial expressions coming in as the match progressed. The poor lad has too much to do and he has been running around without an well-oiled midfield machinery to support him. Louis Saha was so effectively played out of the game that he hardly touched the ball and he looked very lost up front. Rudd van Nistelrooy touched the ball about five times when he came on. He was played out of the game as well. All the UK newspapers reported the injury but all of them said that Paulo Ferreira's challenge on him was a fair one.
When the game started, I was convinced that MU was going to win. Even after William Gallas' early goal, MU looked very dangerous. MU looked dangerous because of one man, Wayne Rooney. The rest looked pretty awed by the occasion and looked very lost. It was only after Joe Cole's goal - which made Rio Ferdinand looked like a clown as he practically swerved past him - was the match (almost) won.
Last edited by Jose Mourinho; 30-04-2006 at 10:35 AM.
30-04-2006, 10:26 AM
Teeque. My take is that the game is won in the midfield nowadays. MU is building its midfield engine but it will be some time before it has the strength and ability of their Beckham-Keane-Scholes-Giggs era. And that is why despite having one of the best midfield engine-room in the league, Roman Abramovich is forking out money to get yet another midfielder, Michael Ballack. We shall see what Jose Mourinho is going to do next season and it woudl be awesome to see the Ballack-Essien-Lampard-Cole-Makele combination.
Last edited by Jose Mourinho; 30-04-2006 at 10:36 AM.
30-04-2006, 08:43 PM
With regards to John Terry, I know he has a reputation to play thru the pain. Granted, yesterday's Premiership winning match was a moment to savour and not to be missed, by him or any other player for that matter. But, for him to play on despite the pain and hobbling abt because he, in his own words, "was desperate to stay on and enjoy the moment" is a very stupid and selfish act for a player of his stature. Even if he goes off when they were leading by two goals, he would still be the rightful captain of the club, be the one to receive the Premiership trophy in any case and celebrate the win with his mates and fans alike. Nobody can and will deny him that moment. We could all see how he endured the painful agony and, at one stage, even shook his head to signify the difficulty in continuing. By continuing in the game, he would put himself at a great risk for the injury to be aggravated further or for someone to put in a challenge and 'put him out of his misery'. If that happens, he then would be following in Rooney's footsteps and risk himself out of the WC. I guess all this would raise the issue of the club over country arguments again and that players, if chosen to represent the country and with the world's showcase footballing tournament weeks away in mind, hv to weigh their critical playing decisions and their availability for an equally important mission and assignment for the country as well.
As for Rooney, well, the club statement reporting his return in six weeks is a wee bit too optimistic according to medical opinions reported in the English press. Some medical experts are of the opinion that an injury to the metatarsal in the foot do take at least 2-3 mths to heal completely. I would say the 2-3 mths absence is the more ideal diagnosis of his injury situation. Unless there is a super drug in the market that heals a broken bone in a shorter time than 2 mths, which I do not think there is. And yes, I agree with you, Jose, that it was a fair challenge. It was just unlucky of him, that he was the centre of attention for opposing teams' defenders and that he is the only player in a 'great' MU team that would pose a threat to rival teams.
Coupled with the injury scare frm Owen yesterday, soccer pundits in England hv now drastically demoted England's WC chances to a minimal. Sir Bobby Robson even believes that England's chances hv gone frm 'possible winners to rank outsiders now.. These are indeed dismal and pessimistic views coming frm the English now.
And yes, Jose, you are quite right abt that, that the midfield are where pitch battles are fought out. They are the first line of defense and also the offense. Excellent midfield players these days must be able to spearhead an attack to achieve a result as well as provide an important first line cover for the defense. A team's success does critically depend on this advantage. It is the reason also why many hv viewed Gerrard (and Vieira as well) as the complete midfielder in the world. His ability to attack frm midfield and scores crucial goals as well as defend his defense with gusto are the qualities that many managers envy and are looking to prise him frm Anfield.
Last edited by Teeque; 30-04-2006 at 09:02 PM.
30-04-2006, 08:49 PM
hmckl, for me I never like the 'donkey' even with his positive playing attitude in his Liverpool days. He just was a misfit in the whole setup. He came with promise and left without fulfilling that prophecy. He was just...promising, never established himself there.