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    5 year contract, £5.1m fee although we're getting around £700k back as loan fee.

    Milner, Sturridge and Henderson have outside chance v Stoke according to Echo.
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    Sturridge is done and is nicking a living. He should opt into that Barclay's sponsored wheelchair sport where crocked males admirably dunk balls into hoops whilst doing wheelies. He'll be playing alongside veteran's that had their legs blown off in Afghanistan. That'll toughen the **** up.
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    2-0 to west ham ahahahah
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    Wouldn't be surprised if we see the likes of Kent, Brad Smith and Brannagan against Exeter to be honest. I wouldn't mind, either.
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    (Original post by Mackay)
    Wouldn't be surprised if we see the likes of Kent, Brad Smith and Brannagan against Exeter to be honest. I wouldn't mind, either.
    4th tier of the English leagues? You'd imagine it is one game we should be trying to rest a few players.
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    Having a think about our current players, I think we should be trying to do the following formations:


    Benteke
    Coutinho* Henderson Ibe
    Can Lucas
    Moreno Sakho Lovren Clyne
    Mignolet

    *can be swapped with Lallana or Firmino


    Sturridge
    Firmino Coutinho Milner
    Can Henderson
    Moreno Sakho Lovren Clyne
    Mignolet

    I don't think Benteke will be able to adapt and play as a lone striker. At the moment Ings and Origi are out and Sturridge can't play since always injured or recovering.

    So the next best option for Benteke where no other strike partners are available (Firmino didn't work either) is to have a player who can make runs beyond him. Imo the only player I can think of is Henderson. Milner is probably intelligent enough to do it too. Henderson has a bit of pace and has the energy to run on beyond him but also settle back into a midfield three. Ibe gives a bit of pace and anyone can play on the left frankly.

    If Sturridge is available, Coutinho has to play centrally for me. Firmino used to play on the left flank at Hoffenheim so stick him out there since he hasn't done enough for me in a more central role. Milner just because he links up well with Clyne on the right.

    Really hope we can keep it tight against Stoke tomorrow night. Worst thing would be to be out of the tie before the return leg. We'll have a few more players back before we play the 2nd leg.
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    Surely a diamond would be great. Sturridge's pace making runs beyond him and Benteke's aerial prowess. Also allows Firmino to play in a forward position similar to Sterling.
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    (Original post by jam277)
    Surely a diamond would be great. Sturridge's pace making runs beyond him and Benteke's aerial prowess. Also allows Firmino to play in a forward position similar to Sterling.
    Not sure we'll see Sturridge and Benteke together since one is always injured.

    I think the problem with using the diamond is that we then only use one of Firmino, Coutinho, Lallana, Ibe and Milner (assuming we use Lucas, Henderson and Can as the other 3 in the midfield).
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    Not sure we'll see Sturridge and Benteke together since one is always injured.

    I think the problem with using the diamond is that we then only use one of Firmino, Coutinho, Lallana, Ibe and Milner (assuming we use Lucas, Henderson and Can as the other 3 in the midfield).
    Firmino can play at ST, possibly Ibe so there is room for that in the formation. The issue is that you don't have any wingers really, Ibe at most and a wide forward in Firmino. No real wingers, saying that you haven't had or used that since the years of Stewart Downing
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    (Original post by jam277)
    Firmino can play at ST, possibly Ibe so there is room for that in the formation. The issue is that you don't have any wingers really, Ibe at most and a wide forward in Firmino. No real wingers, saying that you haven't had or used that since the years of Stewart Downing
    Yea we saw him as ST against Chelsea and Man City but I think the problem is that he doesn't offer an outball (he's not fast enough like Sturridge and he's not big/strong like Benteke). I'm not really sure why Firmino hasn't been tried as a lone striker in other games.

    Firmino and Benteke were tried in one game together and it was really really bad. I think Klopp realises they aren't on the same wavelength as we haven't seen that combination since.

    We could do with a pacey winger in January. I think that is where we really miss Sterling.
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    http://www.thisisanfield.com/2015/12...ffer-contract/

    Liverpool are also hoping to strike a pre-contract agreement in January with the Schalke defender Joel Matip, who is out of contract with the Bundesliga club next summer.

    Or we could make a £4mil bid to bring him in January.

    Seems to play DM or CB. Only 24 too.
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    (Original post by jam277)
    Surely a diamond would be great. Sturridge's pace making runs beyond him and Benteke's aerial prowess. Also allows Firmino to play in a forward position similar to Sterling.
    Agreed that a diamond is our best option and probably what BR was aiming for with the signings he made, before injuries made it not possible. It's no coincidence we destroyed Southampton the one time we went with a diamond under Klopp.

    Benteke and Sturridge would be a deadly pairing, and imo the only way we could get the most out of Benteke. I also don't think it's too much of an issue with fitting in our attacking mid players. Firmino can play as part of the front two, and Coutinho (or Lallana) could play in the LCM position, which is actually pretty ideal because CM's in a diamond also need to provide width at times, just like Henderson and Milner are capable of doing from RCM.

    From a tactical standpoint, I don't think there's actually that much difference between a 4-3-3 and a 4-4-2 diamond. The midfield 3 is pretty much the same, it is simply about how you get the best out of the forward 3 (which is always pretty fluid in a team like ours anyway) with the personnel you have got. For the players we have, who are pretty **** at crossing, is best to get them playing close together, making runs off each other and creating space for one another by dragging players out of position. Actually, we saw that with the narrow 4-3-3 against City.

    A change of formation can only do so much though. A big part of the problem is simply that our players are lazy and unwilling to do the pressing. This is a bit disappointing considering both Lallana and Firmino were brought in partly due to their high workrate. The pressing is nothing new that Klopp has brought in, BR insisted on it too, and in 13/14 when we were playing well we saw that (in part due to Suarez leading from the front). When the players lose their confidence, and they don't see the pressing working, then they stop bothering, and that has been as much of an issue for Klopp as it was with BR. I'm not sure how it can be fixed though... a kick up the backside, or new players? Neither is as easy as it sounds.

    Coutinho is a big problem atm. He has been terrible all season, and wasn't much better for a lot of last season. Literally all he does nowadays is try to make space for himself and shoot. Great when it works, but how often is that? He is no longer the creative player we all fell in love with, he is not interested in trying to play in teammates. I think part of it is down to BR, the likes of Sterling, Henderson and Downing all said things along the lines of "the boss has been telling me take more shots when there is an opening" after scoring long range goals, so it seemed to be a common theme with BR. But I'm surprised that Klopp seemingly hasn't tried to stamp it out of Coutinho. If any of our other attacking mids were playing well at all, he surely would have been dropped by now.

    Just a quick word on Brad Smith, he has looked top notch on the brief glimpses I've had of him. I was surprised to see a U21's LB being subbed on when we were chasing a game but he definitely added something for us. Deserves a start in the cup I reckon.
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    No Sturridge again tomorrow.
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    (Original post by mr tim)
    No Sturridge again tomorrow.
    Perhaps Klopp is sticking to his "mini pre-season" for Sturridge with an eye on getting him ready for the Man Utd and Arsenal games?
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    (Original post by jam277)
    Firmino can play at ST, possibly Ibe so there is room for that in the formation. The issue is that you don't have any wingers really, Ibe at most and a wide forward in Firmino. No real wingers, saying that you haven't had or used that since the years of Stewart Downing
    I'd actually back Firmino up top, to be honest. He seems to thrive in that final fifth, and arguably is at his best the nearer the goalposts he gets. We saw in 2013-14 that he knows where the net is, so let's see a bit more of that.
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    (Original post by Mackay)
    I'd actually back Firmino up top, to be honest. He seems to thrive in that final fifth, and arguably is at his best the nearer the goalposts he gets. We saw in 2013-14 that he knows where the net is, so let's see a bit more of that.
    But at the moment Firmino doesn't seem to know what a football is?

    Toughest thing is we don't really have much to rotate with due to our current injuries.

    Stoke have basically played the same side for the last 3 games in a week. I think they will be just as fatigued as us..
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    But at the moment Firmino doesn't seem to know what a football is?
    Does anybody in red?

    We scored more against Southampton than in the seven games since. Last year we couldn't seem to find the net, but we had scored SIX more than we have currently.

    We've managed 22. That's less than Vardy and Mahrez combined.
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    (Original post by Mackay)
    Does anybody in red?

    We scored more against Southampton than in the seven games since. Last year we couldn't seem to find the net, but we had scored SIX more than we have currently.

    We've managed 22. That's less than Vardy and Mahrez combined.
    http://www.theguardian.com/football/...15-interactive

    Coutinho the only one to make the top 100 best footballers in the world at 46.

    Even in recent years we always had a couple in the top 10/20 and a few more in the top 100. Shows you how far this squad has fallen in 5-7 years.

    Who in this side would you truly want to build a side around? A lot of them could be good team players or squad players in a title challenging/top 4 challenging side but who is true quality?

    FSG are onto their 4th manager in 5 years - I think it's fair to say they either need to adapt their chosen approach or we need to lower our expectations of what is feasible.

    Personally I think FSG and the fans should give Klopp a few years to build a side slowly from scratch, even if that means missing out on CL football for a few years. He's proven himself to be a great manager if he has time. We keep trying to take shortcuts and putting plasters on the squad but the bottom has fallen out now. There's some potential there but I'd probably only keep half of the squad if I had the option.

    The solution isn't even to buy a Vardy/Mahrez. We need to either go out and buy or develop a core of star players (a striker, an attacker, a CM and a CB) and then work on from there.

    Rafa was the last manager to manage it here where he stripped away most of the old and brought in new who worked in a system that the manager wanted.

    I think the pressure got to Rodger after that title challenge. He went from having time to build a side with little pressure to suddenly needing results all the time.

    Look at Arsenal in comparison and look how long it has taken Wenger to build this latest squad into something decent. Half the squad developed from youth and the other half have been bought in the last 2-5 years.

    But hey, maybe we'll smash Stoke, win the league cup and then everything will be okay
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    http://www.theguardian.com/football/...15-interactive

    Coutinho the only one to make the top 100 best footballers in the world at 46.
    Haven't seen that list. Will peruse now.
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    Rooney at 60 though...
 
 
 
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