manunited

Liverpool vs. Manchester United 22/03/15

So we lost.

So I could blame many things. Our awful start. Rodgers outwitted by van Gaal. Lallana’s glaring miss. Moreno’s poor positioning. Gerrard’s STUPID stamp.

But in the end, this is a game that stood out as a stark reminder that we’re still recovering. Always recovering. Always falling short. And we should damn well have done better in the first half like we did in the second…of the season. We won’t get 4th because we don’t deserve it, because of our patchy results up until December.

The only bright spot in the match was Sakho, who was imperious and impeccable once more. He made a mockery of Rooney and Falcao (who makes a mockery of himself to be fair…), and if Fellaini had been his opponent, I’m sure he would have dealt with Elbow-man with consummate ease as well. I only hope we can keep him fit, and keep him at Liverpool.

I feel like Rodgers has made progress with the team since he’s stepped in, but it’s a slow, long and arduous journey that I wished and felt could have gone so much better. But we are where we are, and we can only try and move forward as much as possible.

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Liverpool vs. Manchester United 14/12/14

I was a bit ambivalent about watching the match, as both teams have been awful, and Rodgers’ team selections and substitutions have been baffling. Rumours of Mignolet getting dropped, of a back 3 with Lovren and Gerrard deep didn’t help matters. We also had a no-striker formation, which was not something we’ve really tried before. So it was with trepidation that I approached the game, but it was a terrible game as expected.

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Liverpool vs. Manchester United 16/03/14

First Half

We were good for that 1-0 lead into half-time, thanks to Gerrard’s cool penalty for a deliberate handball by Rafael (who was on a yellow and should have gone off). We had far better penetration, and Sturridge had two glorious chances spurned. Henderson and Allen were great in midfield, but Sterling was getting pushed off the ball quite easily. Flanagan was over-enthusiastic, and got himself booked, and he couldn’t really handle Rafael down that flank. Moyes seemed to notice that, and put Januzaj on that flank too.

On ManU’s side, Rafael has been one of their better players. And that’s about it. They had about one good shot, and a dozen poor crosses that resulted in mild panic and a grand total of nothing. Given how we like to panic at crosses, it’s not too big a deal. We pressed them well, and they intercepted us well in return (though I think it’s more of sloppy and ambitious passing rather than actual, proper interceptions).

2nd Half

What a start to the 2nd half that was. Jones bundled into Allen from behind for a penalty, and Gerrard slots it in. Sturridge then dives to get Vidic sent off, and Gerrard hits the post for the resulting penalty. Given that Sturridge dived, we didn’t deserve to score, but Rafael should have been off, so United being down to 10 men was fair play. Sturridge then should have gotten a real penalty after that, but didn’t. He slid a beautiful ball into Suarez who scored our third, and there was another shot just before, from a Johnson through-ball I believe, that De Gea did really well to save.

In the end, we finished comfortably, and got a clean sheet too. ManU could only cross and cross. Mata and Rooney were anonymous, and Januzaj was taken off for Welback when he was United’s brightest spark. Fellaini did a decent job actually, but went off for Cleverly who was predictably invisible. Instead of throwing the kitchen sink at us like Fergie would have, Moyes brought on Ferdinand for Mata to prevent another goal.

I hope they don’t sack Moyes though. He needs time to rebuild the squad. #Moyesin

Shinji Kagawa vs. Olympiakos

It’s so sad how he keeps demanding the ball and no one gives it to him. It just keeps going to the flanks for Young to dribble and cross aimlessly. He’s being so criminally underused, both by Ferguson and now Moyes. Klopp may not have been fully right to criticise them, given that Kagawa might really have some fitness/fit issues. But the way he gets shunted to the left is a joke.

Of course, some blame must land on Kagawa himself. Choosing to go to Manchester United when they are not tuned towards passing and possession football was a mistake. Even under Fergie, ManU had always relied on wing play, more so than any other top teams in any European league.

Maybe Klopp can rescue him like he did Sahin (whom I still wish was with Liverpool; playing him as a No. 10 made zero sense). And he can go and rip up the Bundesliga again, proving that Moyes is a dinosaur. And that ManU should have tried to lure Klopp instead.

I’m so glad they didn’t though. #MoyesIn.