Well the first game of the season was back yesterday and all the hype, excitment and optimism for the new season was somewhat overshadowed by a poor performance, never the less a win is a win, and the sign of a top, top team is to manage to win when you play badly and Liverpool certianly played badly against a much improved Sunderland side.
Rafa’s team selection yesterday could be brought into question, with the inclusion of Plesis and Sami, although Plesis didn’t really put a foot wrong, his inexperience and lack of flair meant that Sunderland mangaed to contain the central midfield area, however Plesis’s knock to his lower back was somewhat a blessing in disguise as Rafa was forced to introduce the class act of Xabi Alonso, this substitution turned the game around for me, the central midfield area was dominant in Gerrard and Alonso.
Alonso’s range of passing is exceptional, his execution in his passes is second to none, and finally his awareness, well what can you say (that 60 yard effort he had against Craig Gordon’s goal)…he is a class act, and one that Liverpool would surely miss if he left, he was our best player in pre-season, and again yesterday he was terrific.
I feel the 18 million pound asking price for Gareth Barry could be better spent in other area’s of the team, an area in particular which especially in recent times has contributed massively to the downfall in Liverpool’s title challenges…the WIDE AREA’S.
The chav’s, the mancs and the gooners all have wide players, not only that they have good wide players, and all though we have Flying Ryan in our team, who i’m sure would have made a big difference in yesterday’s game, he is our only natural wide man.
I’ve ran out of patince with Dirk Kuyt, and although he isn’t playing in his favoured position and is being forced to play out wide, his contribution to the team is extremely minimal.
As for yossi, he actually played well yesterday, he was positive everytime he had the ball, however he offered us little width on the left, as everytime he had the ball he cut inside into the middle where gerrard plesis/alonso were operating. We need a natural winger, who is going to hog the touchline, and will ultimately create more space for the like’s of gerrard, alonso and robbie to work their magic.
Forget Gareth Barry as i feel he wouldn’t benefit the team, as he isn’t a winger, and also if he did play out wide for us, he wouldn’t be the same player, as he would if he was playing in the middle of the park… Liverpool need a winger…this is much more of a necessity than Gareth Barry…for me if we are going to mount an actual title challenge, Rafa need’s to keep Xabi and work his magic in the transfer market, to bring in a wide player.