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    Ugh ffs... Man Utd will play awful against us but RVP will no doubt score a hattrick. I hate facing that guy!
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    So in terms of last night:

    Lambert is obviously an intelligent experienced player with good movement and hold up play/link up play. His problem is that he just isn't a top quality player. He's going to score very few solo match winners and we don't often cross the ball for him to score. At Southampton, where teams gave him more space, you can see how he would do well with good movement and link up play but at Liverpool you don't get afforded that. While he does well in the air, he's always up against 2 defender so he's going to struggle to make a proper impact - the way we want a world class player to lead the line.

    Sterling is getting closer to the form of last season after having gone off the boil at the start of the season. It's actually a compliment that we rely so much on a 20 year old. He's getting better in some ways but actually I think he's getting worse in others. He often slows the play down - I can't work out if that is intended or he just can't decide what the best option is so he just stops? He was at his best when he didn't overly think about the next move. I'm sure it's hard with the lack of movement up front but his decision making needs to improve next. He's got the pace, he's such a strong player for someone so small, he's added a bag of tricks and great at dropping his shoulder but to make the next step up is to improve his decision making (and then his shooting).

    Gerrard is tough to work out. At times he carries the team with his contributions. No one else in the team can pass the ball like he can and he's one of the few leaders in the side. However with age, weaknesses have come into his play such as his mobility and loose playing and then we get exposed. I think he'd still be a top top player in the right side but at the moment he seems to be the wrong player for the system that Rodgers wants the rest of the team to play?

    I feel bad for Henderson. I think he really could have made a step up this season with his energy and all round play. Unfortunately since he is so good all round, he gets shifted into other positions. More and more I think his best role would be (currently) behind Lambert. So I'd play Lucas with Allen or Can in the middle then Henderson behind Lambert with Sterling/Coutinho/Markovic/Lallana flanking him. You'd see so much drive from the middle, much like Gerrard of old. He's one of the few players who can very quickly turn it from being a 3 man midfield into a 2 man strike pair imo.

    Allen I can't figure out. I know he's a player who you need to watch in a replay to see his actual contribution but even though he's into his 3rd season at the club, he just seems to be on a different wavelength to his team mates? I can see how he could help a team really tick but at the moment we need some individual quality to lift the team but Allen doesn't seem to have that in his game.

    Lucas is coming back to Lucas of old - great defensive play and shows up everywhere but equally he still can't start an attack from deep on a continuous basis. I think it's not coincidence that him coming back into DM has improved our defence. To me they seem less exposed than before. Maybe the attacking struggles come from the terrible movement up front?

    Johnson seems to have given up a little bit? I still think he's the better allround fullback over Manquillo and Moreno but he's lost that yard of pace and that 10% of willingness for me. For me he'll leave in the summer and we'll try to buy another experienced RB to compete with Flanagan and Manquillo.

    Enrique is just poor. His injury has made it harder for him since he needs game time to get fit again but i think it more clearly shows the weaknesses in his game.

    Skrtel has just carried on as before. He's a solid CB but grabs way too much and has the odd brain fart so he's never going to be world class. At the same token, he reads the game well enough that we don't get ripped to shreds even more.

    Lovren has been such a bad buy (and for that price!) I can't work out if he's just in bad form or just a bit unlucky or just crap? He generally gets into the right position/does the right thing to start and then it goes horribly wrong? Every clearance seems to go to the opposition. Amazing that we let Agger go for next to nothing to replace with Lovren. Sakho needs to come back from injury asap. I'd be happy to see Sakho and Skrtel for a bit.

    Mignolet has time and time shown that he is a great shot stopper but no command of the area and terrible at distribution. He isn't even good enough with his feet for us to be rolling the ball out from the back each time. Our CBs aren't good enough to play out from the back either. As much as people pine for Reina, I think Reina was poor in his last couple of years. Reina wasn't great in the air and while his distribution was way better, his shot stopping was terrible. The defence has been poor which has exposed Mignolet but a poor buy at 9mil.

    Does anyone else hate how we defend corners? We seem to be in a straight line on the 6 yard box and no one covering the edge of the box. Every opposition puts a player or two there and time and time we clear the first ball only to give it away straight away. I know Sterling is further ahead to try and break but the ball never gets to him!

    We've reverted back to the way we're played under Rodgers' first season. Lots of sideways passing but no movement up front so the play is slow and stale. Obviously that's what having 2 top strikers helps with. Rodgers said after the match that we don't have the players available to play as intended - I think he's basically referring to Sturridge. So why risk everything on the fitness of one player? If a top striker is key to the way you play, then you should have at least 2 options.

    If Rodgers gets a sizable war chest in January, then it means FSG are backing him. If we see nothing, I think that means he'll get till the end of the season to turn it around with what he has - if he's not able to then he'll get the sack and we'll see someone new come in.
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    Disgraceful. LFC had their destiny in their own hands and blew it....didn't even turn up for the occassion. Pathetic. How many years have LFC waited to get back into the Champions League, only to lay an egg?

    Mignolet: Pathetic. His confidence is shot. LFC should have bought Begovic when they had the chance. His signing needs to be a priority. He could be a decent back up keeper...and if he has to fight for his job, he can improve.
    Full backs....I could go on...but my response will be concise. WHERE'S FLANAGAN??? :'( When a 21 year old is hands down the best player in the defense....that defense has trouble. Ugh. Moreno's added nothing....Enrique...well...what happened to him? I guess...Manquillo isn't Johnson...who would be more at home at RM/RWB in a 352, or 343 formation. LFC downgraded, by getting rid of Kelly..who at the very least showed he was a good fullback...and had the size to be a competent CB.
    Centerbacks: Walter Samel, was and still is a better centerback than any of the miscreant rag-tags LFC have right now, who are not centerbacks...but centergones. Kolo Toure was decent....10 years ago. Sakho makes too many mistakes...and Skrtl's lost it completely. I stand by what I said just after last season had finished...with Carragher last year...LFC would have won the league. LFC miss Agger's technical ability on the ball, and Carragher's leadership....it's depressing that after spending 20M on a CB, that Liverpool have a more pressing need in this position than Man United.
    Lucas: He's past it. The injuries have taken a toll
    Henderson: the only bright spot in that midfield. The rest: needs improvement.
    Gerrard: If Gerrard is going to play the Pirlo role...and he can play that role, he needs more than the legs of Jordan Henderson in front of him. Heck, Pirlo has Pogba, Vidal and Marchisio all in front of him who all exude pace and energy, ability to defend and technicality on the ball.
    Strikers: COME BACK SUAREZ!! :'( STURRIDGE...COME BACK FROM INJURY!
    Sterling is great, but he needs to be played on the wing. There needs to be an emphasis on speed and fluidity in attack...that's not happening.

    Well...at least if all goes to plan, come 2019, Liverpool will be back in the Champions League. This actually sucks raw fish eggs. Goodnight.
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    So in terms of last night:

    Lambert is obviously an intelligent experienced player with good movement and hold up play/link up play. His problem is that he just isn't a top quality player. He's going to score very few solo match winners and we don't often cross the ball for him to score. At Southampton, where teams gave him more space, you can see how he would do well with good movement and link up play but at Liverpool you don't get afforded that. While he does well in the air, he's always up against 2 defender so he's going to struggle to make a proper impact - the way we want a world class player to lead the line.

    Sterling is getting closer to the form of last season after having gone off the boil at the start of the season. It's actually a compliment that we rely so much on a 20 year old. He's getting better in some ways but actually I think he's getting worse in others. He often slows the play down - I can't work out if that is intended or he just can't decide what the best option is so he just stops? He was at his best when he didn't overly think about the next move. I'm sure it's hard with the lack of movement up front but his decision making needs to improve next. He's got the pace, he's such a strong player for someone so small, he's added a bag of tricks and great at dropping his shoulder but to make the next step up is to improve his decision making (and then his shooting).

    Gerrard is tough to work out. At times he carries the team with his contributions. No one else in the team can pass the ball like he can and he's one of the few leaders in the side. However with age, weaknesses have come into his play such as his mobility and loose playing and then we get exposed. I think he'd still be a top top player in the right side but at the moment he seems to be the wrong player for the system that Rodgers wants the rest of the team to play?

    I feel bad for Henderson. I think he really could have made a step up this season with his energy and all round play. Unfortunately since he is so good all round, he gets shifted into other positions. More and more I think his best role would be (currently) behind Lambert. So I'd play Lucas with Allen or Can in the middle then Henderson behind Lambert with Sterling/Coutinho/Markovic/Lallana flanking him. You'd see so much drive from the middle, much like Gerrard of old. He's one of the few players who can very quickly turn it from being a 3 man midfield into a 2 man strike pair imo.

    Allen I can't figure out. I know he's a player who you need to watch in a replay to see his actual contribution but even though he's into his 3rd season at the club, he just seems to be on a different wavelength to his team mates? I can see how he could help a team really tick but at the moment we need some individual quality to lift the team but Allen doesn't seem to have that in his game.

    Lucas is coming back to Lucas of old - great defensive play and shows up everywhere but equally he still can't start an attack from deep on a continuous basis. I think it's not coincidence that him coming back into DM has improved our defence. To me they seem less exposed than before. Maybe the attacking struggles come from the terrible movement up front?

    Johnson seems to have given up a little bit? I still think he's the better allround fullback over Manquillo and Moreno but he's lost that yard of pace and that 10% of willingness for me. For me he'll leave in the summer and we'll try to buy another experienced RB to compete with Flanagan and Manquillo.

    Enrique is just poor. His injury has made it harder for him since he needs game time to get fit again but i think it more clearly shows the weaknesses in his game.

    Skrtel has just carried on as before. He's a solid CB but grabs way too much and has the odd brain fart so he's never going to be world class. At the same token, he reads the game well enough that we don't get ripped to shreds even more.

    Lovren has been such a bad buy (and for that price!) I can't work out if he's just in bad form or just a bit unlucky or just crap? He generally gets into the right position/does the right thing to start and then it goes horribly wrong? Every clearance seems to go to the opposition. Amazing that we let Agger go for next to nothing to replace with Lovren. Sakho needs to come back from injury asap. I'd be happy to see Sakho and Skrtel for a bit.

    Mignolet has time and time shown that he is a great shot stopper but no command of the area and terrible at distribution. He isn't even good enough with his feet for us to be rolling the ball out from the back each time. Our CBs aren't good enough to play out from the back either. As much as people pine for Reina, I think Reina was poor in his last couple of years. Reina wasn't great in the air and while his distribution was way better, his shot stopping was terrible. The defence has been poor which has exposed Mignolet but a poor buy at 9mil.

    Does anyone else hate how we defend corners? We seem to be in a straight line on the 6 yard box and no one covering the edge of the box. Every opposition puts a player or two there and time and time we clear the first ball only to give it away straight away. I know Sterling is further ahead to try and break but the ball never gets to him!

    We've reverted back to the way we're played under Rodgers' first season. Lots of sideways passing but no movement up front so the play is slow and stale. Obviously that's what having 2 top strikers helps with. Rodgers said after the match that we don't have the players available to play as intended - I think he's basically referring to Sturridge. So why risk everything on the fitness of one player? If a top striker is key to the way you play, then you should have at least 2 options.

    If Rodgers gets a sizable war chest in January, then it means FSG are backing him. If we see nothing, I think that means he'll get till the end of the season to turn it around with what he has - if he's not able to then he'll get the sack and we'll see someone new come in.
    That's a good analysis. The thing is....Lambert is a really technical player. If his name was Ricardo Lamberto, he would be the focal point of the attack...he really isn't getting any help. LFC made the crossing to the big English guy mistake with Crouch and Carroll....who were actually very technically-sound players.

    Reina was an excellent all-round keeper. I believe he still is. His distribution and ability on the ball was amazing. Whatever mistakes he made, he was a victim of his earlier success; ie. three golden gloves; he came in and improving that defense almost overnight. Reina had issues catching the ball...but he never screwed up to the extent that Mignolet does. Suddenly 15M for Begovic doesn't look so bad though...
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    (Original post by jammy4041)
    Sterling is great, but he needs to be played on the wing. There needs to be an emphasis on speed and fluidity in attack...that's not happening.
    Bull****, Raheem is clearly better in the middle. He is lethal there. The problem is he had no one to lay off to and Gerrard playing as a striker alongside Skrtel towards the end.

    If we could play Lambert/Balotelli (deep lying) and Sturridge together, and started with Coutinho/Sterling/Lallana behind, I think we'd have seen a different outcome. The problem is we have no one to bang in goals, and we have a keeper who refuses to distribute more than 20 yards and catches a ball like a wet trout. Midfield is fairly solid. Allen did look a bit sheepish closing down earlier on but got better. Hendo had a few moments of last season's brilliance but not quite as persistent. Gerrard as we know has lost his legs and needs to stop trying to shoot from distance like days of old, but still quality when you need him. Few people can score free kicks like that in those sorts of situations.
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    (Original post by Lúcio)
    thought i'd quote you for the hissy fit about to follow.
    Cheers man. Always great to hear from you.

    Yeah, it's a difficult one. Do you think you over achieved last season? I mean for me, it's just not good enough to say well that was a one off now we'll go back to being 7th, if I was a Liverpool fan, massive club, I'd have wanted to spend 120M wisely and challenge for the title this year, I mean you were incredible last season, you tore us apart at Old Trafford.

    Is it Rodgers? Would you sack? Is he just a mid table manager who got lucky to have Suarez last year?
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    (Original post by MJK91)
    Bull****, Raheem is clearly better in the middle. He is lethal there. The problem is he had no one to lay off to and Gerrard playing as a striker alongside Skrtel towards the end.

    If we could play Lambert/Balotelli (deep lying) and Sturridge together, and started with Coutinho/Sterling/Lallana behind, I think we'd have seen a different outcome. The problem is we have no one to bang in goals, and we have a keeper who refuses to distribute more than 20 yards and catches a ball like a wet trout. Midfield is fairly solid. Allen did look a bit sheepish closing down earlier on but got better. Hendo had a few moments of last season's brilliance but not quite as persistent. Gerrard as we know has lost his legs and needs to stop trying to shoot from distance like days of old, but still quality when you need him. Few people can score free kicks like that in those sorts of situations.
    Then LFC would have no width. 4-3-1-1-1 does not work, and I just don't like the 4-3-1-2 approach, because they don't. I think he's better when he's taking on players. He's got the tools to succeed in a CAM position, but LFC also have Coutinho, who is much better as a CAM than a winger, to such an extent that any advantage of playing Sterling at CAM rather than on the wing are negated with Coutiniho being forced from his actual position. The attack has to have fluidity, and it was one thing that was stressed. He can start on the wing, and move inside, or start inside and move outside, but there has to be movement up top. Sturridge cannot be the silver bullet as a magical solution to the attacking ills.
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    (Original post by jammy4041)
    Then LFC would have no width. 4-3-1-1-1 does not work, and I just don't like the 4-3-1-2 approach, because they don't. I think he's better when he's taking on players. He's got the tools to succeed in a CAM position, but LFC also have Coutinho, who is much better as a CAM than a winger, to such an extent that any advantage of playing Sterling at CAM rather than on the wing are negated with Coutiniho being forced from his actual position. The attack has to have fluidity, and it was one thing that was stressed. He can start on the wing, and move inside, or start inside and move outside, but there has to be movement up top. Sturridge cannot be the silver bullet as a magical solution to the attacking ills.
    But he kind of is. We have not seen Sturridge and Balotelli play together properly: Balotelli is not an out-and-out striker and is better playing off someone else, in a deeper position. 4-3-1-2 could well work. Coutinho played well when he came on last night. There is no reason why those attacking three (Cout/Sterling/Lallana) can't switch positions in play, but Sterling's pace makes him more effective through the middle. Effectively makes it 4-3-3 in attacking play with Sterling playing as a faux-striker and and Coutinho/Lallana and one of Gerrard/Henderson in attacking midfield. It does work well, but needs the right players and a bit of luck injury wise.
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    (Original post by jammy4041)
    That's a good analysis. The thing is....Lambert is a really technical player. If his name was Ricardo Lamberto, he would be the focal point of the attack...he really isn't getting any help. LFC made the crossing to the big English guy mistake with Crouch and Carroll....who were actually very technically-sound players.

    Reina was an excellent all-round keeper. I believe he still is. His distribution and ability on the ball was amazing. Whatever mistakes he made, he was a victim of his earlier success; ie. three golden gloves; he came in and improving that defense almost overnight. Reina had issues catching the ball...but he never screwed up to the extent that Mignolet does. Suddenly 15M for Begovic doesn't look so bad though...
    Due to Lambert's age and limitations, he needs the right set up to flourish - for me that means a pacey strike partner who can run onto the flick-ons and runners from the midfield/flanks. But then he isn't good enough to set the entire team up around. I can see the logic in bringing him on with 20 mins to go when we need a goal. Rodgers sold Carroll because he didn't fit the blueprint. So Lambert will be used in limited circumstances - he's only playing now as Sturridge and Balotelli are injured.

    Reina wasn't so commanding in the area either but also he rarely made good saves? He saved those which ever keeper would be expected to but you can see that Migonolet is a good shot stopper. The issue is that the top sides don't need a shot stopper as much since they don't expect as many shots on target and need to be able to distribute well and command the area imo. 15mil for a goalkeeper is a lot of money. Reina cost us £6mil and Mignolet falls within the top 10 expensive GKs I believe at only 9mil.

    (Original post by MJK91)
    Bull****, Raheem is clearly better in the middle. He is lethal there. The problem is he had no one to lay off to and Gerrard playing as a striker alongside Skrtel towards the end.

    If we could play Lambert/Balotelli (deep lying) and Sturridge together, and started with Coutinho/Sterling/Lallana behind, I think we'd have seen a different outcome. The problem is we have no one to bang in goals, and we have a keeper who refuses to distribute more than 20 yards and catches a ball like a wet trout. Midfield is fairly solid. Allen did look a bit sheepish closing down earlier on but got better. Hendo had a few moments of last season's brilliance but not quite as persistent. Gerrard as we know has lost his legs and needs to stop trying to shoot from distance like days of old, but still quality when you need him. Few people can score free kicks like that in those sorts of situations.
    I can't decide where Sterling's best position is tbh. He seems to work best when he can turn and run. Can he do that in the middle when the opposition have 10 men behind the ball?

    I think Sturridge coming into the side will make everyone look better whether he has a strike partner or 3 runners from midfield.

    (Original post by Eboracum)
    Cheers man. Always great to hear from you.

    Yeah, it's a difficult one. Do you think you over achieved last season? I mean for me, it's just not good enough to say well that was a one off now we'll go back to being 7th, if I was a Liverpool fan, massive club, I'd have wanted to spend 120M wisely and challenge for the title this year, I mean you were incredible last season, you tore us apart at Old Trafford.

    Is it Rodgers? Would you sack? Is he just a mid table manager who got lucky to have Suarez last year?
    I don't think we overachieved tbh. We outplayed a lot of teams and scored a lot of goals in the process. But you take out 2 stars from that 11 and then it changes the entire dynamic of your team. The main mistake in hindsight (and plenty said it at the time) was that we needed one star striker to replace Suarez. If Sturridge was fit, we would've been half a dozen points better off imo.

    If you've watched Rodgers' team since the days of Rafa, Woy and Kenny, you can see that our attacking play last season improved to no end. My biggest gripe with Rafa was that his team passed the ball to the player instead of in front of the player which generates attacking momentum - Rodgers' sides do that.


    (Original post by jammy4041)
    Then LFC would have no width. 4-3-1-1-1 does not work, and I just don't like the 4-3-1-2 approach, because they don't. I think he's better when he's taking on players. He's got the tools to succeed in a CAM position, but LFC also have Coutinho, who is much better as a CAM than a winger, to such an extent that any advantage of playing Sterling at CAM rather than on the wing are negated with Coutiniho being forced from his actual position. The attack has to have fluidity, and it was one thing that was stressed. He can start on the wing, and move inside, or start inside and move outside, but there has to be movement up top. Sturridge cannot be the silver bullet as a magical solution to the attacking ills.
    Part of the issue is that so many players look like they may be good in the CAM position but no one truly stands out - we could go with Lambert/Balotelli playing off Sturridge or any of Sterling, Coutinho, Lallana, Gerrard or Henderson imo.
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    (Original post by Eboracum)
    Cheers man. Always great to hear from you.

    Yeah, it's a difficult one. Do you think you over achieved last season? I mean for me, it's just not good enough to say well that was a one off now we'll go back to being 7th, if I was a Liverpool fan, massive club, I'd have wanted to spend 120M wisely and challenge for the title this year, I mean you were incredible last season, you tore us apart at Old Trafford.

    Is it Rodgers? Would you sack? Is he just a mid table manager who got lucky to have Suarez last year?
    To be fair, Rodgers had Suarez in his first season and still finished outside top 4. It was only when Coutinho and Sturridge came is when he adopted a system to bring out the best is Suarez which in turn lifted the whole team. That was one thing to give him credit for, but he royally screwed up in the transfer market and now he doesn't have the strikers to play that system anymore as Sturridge is always injured, Lambert and Balotelli don't fit and Borini isn't really good enough but got exiled anyway. He is unable to adapt find a new system which works as a backup plan, he just reverts to the pass it out of the back and pass sideways system...
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    Rodgers went ham from after Xmas of 2013 up until end of last season. It's a strange one tbh. Berahino won't join you now, he said he wants to play CL football (not taking the piss here).


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    (Original post by jammy4041)
    Reina had issues catching the ball...but he never screwed up to the extent that Mignolet does. Suddenly 15M for Begovic doesn't look so bad though...
    I was very disappointed when we brought Mignolet as I knew Begovic would of been a better keeper for us
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    http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/sport/...-2014120493525

    :rofl:
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    Mignolet has time and time shown that he is a great shot stopper but no command of the area and terrible at distribution. He isn't even good enough with his feet for us to be rolling the ball out from the back each time. Our CBs aren't good enough to play out from the back either. As much as people pine for Reina, I think Reina was poor in his last couple of years. Reina wasn't great in the air and while his distribution was way better, his shot stopping was terrible. The defence has been poor which has exposed Mignolet but a poor buy at 9mil.
    I'm so glad someone else thinks this about Reina. People bang on about how amazing he is/was and I just don't get it. Never have done and never will do.
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    (Original post by TheMagicRat)
    I'm so glad someone else thinks this about Reina. People bang on about how amazing he is/was and I just don't get it. Never have done and never will do.
    He was brilliant for his first couple of years and had a good defence in front of him too but he didn't keep it up. I think he was pretty disillusioned by the end.

    Although he'd probably be doing a better job than Mignolet at the moment.
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    The 'why did we let Reina go?!?!?' issue just illustrates the main misunderstanding the many football fans have about their clubs wage structure. People talk about net transfer spend in terms of transfer fees but no one even thinks about wages, which is what is really important in the day-to-day running of the club.
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    Absolutely brilliant! :lol:
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    Reina was definitely on the decline in his last season, you can hardly blame the club for letting him go especially given the fact he'd have been one of your high earners. Not replacing Mignolet, or at least getting another keeper to provide competition, was a big mistake though. You can't take him out of the team for a bit (which worked for Hart & De Gea) because Brad Jones isn't Premier League standard. Was the plan to bring Valdes in or something?
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    (Original post by The_Mighty_Bush)
    The 'why did we let Reina go?!?!?' issue just illustrates the main misunderstanding the many football fans have about their clubs wage structure. People talk about net transfer spend in terms of transfer fees but no one even thinks about wages, which is what is really important in the day-to-day running of the club.
    Sure we sold Reina as we wanted to reduce the wage bill but you still need to be competitive on the pitch.

    (Original post by sr90)
    Reina was definitely on the decline in his last season, you can hardly blame the club for letting him go especially given the fact he'd have been one of your high earners. Not replacing Mignolet, or at least getting another keeper to provide competition, was a big mistake though. You can't take him out of the team for a bit (which worked for Hart & De Gea) because Brad Jones isn't Premier League standard. Was the plan to bring Valdes in or something?
    When we first bought Mignolet, Rodgers spoke about having two competing number 1s. I'm not sure why we don't have someone better than B.Jones tbh.. If we bring in Valdes now, we're probably in the same position where he's a high earner?
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    Sure we sold Reina as we wanted to reduce the wage bill but you still need to be competitive on the pitch.



    When we first bought Mignolet, Rodgers spoke about having two competing number 1s. I'm not sure why we don't have someone better than B.Jones tbh.. If we bring in Valdes now, we're probably in the same position where he's a high earner?
    You're shedding most of your high earners next summer though. Johnson's probably off and Gerrard will surely have a substantial wage cut.
 
 
 
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