Liverpool find life hard without Torres and Gerrard

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Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard’s standing in the Castrol Rankings underlines why Liverpool have struggled this season whenever the pair have been ruled out because of injury.


Photo from fOTOGLIF

Both players have been in outstanding form over the last 12 months, with Fernando Torres positioned 8th in the overall Castrol Rankings, the top-ranked Premier League player, and Steven Gerrard close behind in 13th.

Castrol Performance Analysis can demonstrate how Liverpool’s form drops dramatically – especially in the Champions League – when the two players are not playing alongside each other.

The pair top the list of Premier League goalscorers over the last 12 months with Torres scoring 18 times since November 2008, and Gerrard in joint second place alongside Chelsea’s Nicolas Anelka with 17 goals.

In addition, Gerrard has contributed 12 assists in the last year, a return bettered only by Arsenal’s Cesc Fabregas (17 assists) and Chelsea’s Frank Lampard (13).

When the pair have been absent this season, Rafael Benitez’s side have averaged just 1 goal and 3.7 shots on target per game compared to 2.3 goals and 7.6 shots on target when both are in the team. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the Reds have won just one of the four games they played without both Gerrard and Torres before the end of October.

This continues a long-standing trend. Since the start of the 2007/08 season, Liverpool have won 69% of Champions League games when Gerrard and Torres have appeared together, but only 29% when one or both has been missing.

Castrol Ambassador and former England captain Alan Shearer said: “Any team in the world would miss players of the quality of Gerrard and Torres.

“Gerrard is an inspirational captain and a superb all-round midfielder who is nearing his peak. And Torres is simply one of the best strikers in the world right now.

“But all good teams have to cope with the loss of key players and Rafael Benitez will look to other members of his squad to fill the gap when either player is missing.”

Liverpool’s squad compares unfavourably with their main Premier League rivals when it comes to the number of players ranked in the top 100 of the Castrol Rankings.

Chelsea lead the way with nine players, Manchester United have seven, while Liverpool and Arsenal have just five representatives, confirming the importance of Gerrard and Torres to Liverpool’s ambitions.

  • For the full October Castrol Rankings, click here
  • To mark the end of the 30-year wait for a league title, the ‘Liverpool Mishmash’ poster is available to order exclusively on This Is Anfield — the history of the Reds in one image!

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