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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    Well Borini puts himself about up front to put some pressure so I'd pick him or Sterling over Lambert/Balotelli. I just think Sterling is better when he has space which Villa won't give him.

    Saying that if Villa defend deep then maybe Lambert/Balotelli are best?
    the issue with borini is that although he runs around (which is great), you don't want a chance to fall to him, and that's pretty hilarious when he's your "striker".

    maybe a bigger presence would be better - if we're gonna be using the wings a fair amount, having a bigger player in the box would maybe work quite well.
    it's a tough one because villa will definitely sit back, defend deep and look to counter so like you said we won't have space running in behind - we need to use the wings.
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    Well Borini puts himself about up front to put some pressure so I'd pick him or Sterling over Lambert/Balotelli. I just think Sterling is better when he has space which Villa won't give him.

    Saying that if Villa defend deep then maybe Lambert/Balotelli are best?
    I think the wide areas will be more crucial tomorrow, as opposed to who starts up top.

    Villa will be a tough side to break down, so we can't afford to play the game at their pace. We are better when we are intensely pressing, harassing opponents and forcing mistakes, which Sterling/Borini offer us over Lambert and Balotelli.

    That makes the overlaps of the wing-backs vital. We'll need width in the opposition third to try and get behind Villa, because they'll be disciplined and look to frustrate us.
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    (Original post by Lúcio)
    the issue with borini is that although he runs around (which is great), you don't want a chance to fall to him, and that's pretty hilarious when he's your "striker".

    maybe a bigger presence would be better - if we're gonna be using the wings a fair amount, having a bigger player in the box would maybe work quite well.
    it's a tough one because villa will definitely sit back, defend deep and look to counter so like you said we won't have space running in behind - we need to use the wings.
    He'll knock one in eventually

    The problem then is if we're knocking it in to the target man then it's easier to clear the ball?

    (Original post by Mackay)
    I think the wide areas will be more crucial tomorrow, as opposed to who starts up top.

    Villa will be a tough side to break down, so we can't afford to play the game at their pace. We are better when we are intensely pressing, harassing opponents and forcing mistakes, which Sterling/Borini offer us over Lambert and Balotelli.

    That makes the overlaps of the wing-backs vital. We'll need width in the opposition third to try and get behind Villa, because they'll be disciplined and look to frustrate us.
    In that case wouldn't you want Sterling on the flank where he'll get the most of the ball? Don't think we'll see much of him if he's upfront. Markovic to play RWB to overload too?
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    He'll knock one in eventually

    The problem then is if we're knocking it in to the target man then it's easier to clear the ball?
    what if instead of playing the long ball to the target man, we put in crosses for him to get on the end of?
    playing the long ball against villa would be playing right in to their hands, and then play too deep to play somebody through behind them.
    the only real option is to use the wings and cross the ball.
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    We don't need to always cross the ball, if we can beat their fullbacks then we can cut into the box from the wings and pick out the striker or we drag the ball back to the edge of the box for a forward or midfielder to blast it into the goal (idea is that the defence will be dragged to the side making more space for a forward to have a shot from the edge or in the box.).
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    He'll knock one in eventually

    The problem then is if we're knocking it in to the target man then it's easier to clear the ball?



    In that case wouldn't you want Sterling on the flank where he'll get the most of the ball? Don't think we'll see much of him if he's upfront. Markovic to play RWB to overload too?
    I'd go with this personally:

    Mignolet
    Can, Skrtel, Sakho
    Manquillo, Lucas, Henderson, Moreno
    Coutinho, Markovic,
    Sterling
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    (Original post by samir12)
    We don't need to always cross the ball, if we can beat their fullbacks then we can cut into the box from the wings and pick out the striker or we drag the ball back to the edge of the box for a forward or midfielder to blast it into the goal (idea is that the defence will be dragged to the side making more space for a forward to have a shot from the edge or in the box.).
    did i not mention that?

    sorry, i meant to put on the end that sometimes we'd cut inside - great for late runners in to the box
    but yes, the main focus is the wings - if manquillo can get his crosses right and markovic has another good game, it could be really simple for us.

    with arsenal up against city, this is an amazing opportunity
    i'll be working so all i'm gonna do is pray
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    (Original post by Mackay)
    I'd go with this personally:

    Mignolet
    Can, Skrtel, Sakho
    Manquillo, Lucas, Henderson, Moreno
    Coutinho, Markovic,
    Sterling
    same here; keep the 3-4-3 because it's working well.

    maybe bring on gerrard, lallana and balotelli later on if we need something new.
    villa are pretty "safe" - they seem to be content with defending well and trying to nick a goal; if not, they still get a draw
    but their defence isn't impenetrable; we WILL get through it, but we need to convert because we won't get too many chances.
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    (Original post by Lúcio)
    what if instead of playing the long ball to the target man, we put in crosses for him to get on the end of?
    playing the long ball against villa would be playing right in to their hands, and then play too deep to play somebody through behind them.
    the only real option is to use the wings and cross the ball.
    Who puts in a decent cross? Crossing is too much of a numbers game instead of quality + lack of retention of the ball for me. Only 3% of corners lead to a goal.

    Mignolet, Can, Skrtel, Sakho, Markovic, Henderson, Lucas, Moreno, Coutinho, Sterling, Borini is rumoured to be the line-up.
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    Who puts in a decent cross? Crossing is too much of a numbers game instead of quality + lack of retention of the ball for me. Only 3% of corners lead to a goal.

    Mignolet, Can, Skrtel, Sakho, Markovic, Henderson, Lucas, Moreno, Coutinho, Sterling, Borini is rumoured to be the line-up.
    manquillo can if he's on his game.
    moreno normally tries to get past his man on the wing and do a low pull-back.

    sometimes we have too much of the ball though; not really doing much with it at all and it motivates the opponent to go ham in the rare occasions where they have the ball.

    that line-up isn't bad, hopefully borini actually does something useful
    at least markovic is on, even if he would be playing RWB.
    does rodgers not trust manquillo or can he not find another player to drop to allow markovic further forward?
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    (Original post by Lúcio)
    manquillo can if he's on his game.
    moreno normally tries to get past his man on the wing and do a low pull-back.

    sometimes we have too much of the ball though; not really doing much with it at all and it motivates the opponent to go ham in the rare occasions where they have the ball.

    that line-up isn't bad, hopefully borini actually does something useful
    at least markovic is on, even if he would be playing RWB.
    does rodgers not trust manquillo or can he not find another player to drop to allow markovic further forward?
    I just don't think Rodgers rates Manquillo in an attacking sense. You'd think with Flanagan and Johnson having been out for so long he would have more than 10 league games.
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    I just don't think Rodgers rates Manquillo in an attacking sense. You'd think with Flanagan and Johnson having been out for so long he would have more than 10 league games.
    yeah that's a good point.
    i rate the kid tbh; i'd always prefer him over johnson.
    i understand he has a lot to learn but compared to some of our other defenders he has been solid.
    i would say that he makes the least mistakes out of our entire defenders, but maybe he's more susceptible in general play.
    moreno is good but makes silly errors, sakho panics on the ball, lovren is lol-worthy, etc...
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    (Original post by Lúcio)
    yeah that's a good point.
    i rate the kid tbh; i'd always prefer him over johnson.
    i understand he has a lot to learn but compared to some of our other defenders he has been solid.
    i would say that he makes the least mistakes out of our entire defenders, but maybe he's more susceptible in general play.
    moreno is good but makes silly errors, sakho panics on the ball, lovren is lol-worthy, etc...
    I'd still pick Johnson over Manquillo, Flanagan and Wisdom.

    Wonder what Rodgers will do about RB in the summer. I imagine Johnson will leave on a free but that still leaves us with 3 young options. Do we send Wisdom out on loan again? Think Flanagan's contract runs out in the summer too.
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    (Original post by Zerforax)
    I'd still pick Johnson over Manquillo, Flanagan and Wisdom.

    Wonder what Rodgers will do about RB in the summer. I imagine Johnson will leave on a free but that still leaves us with 3 young options. Do we send Wisdom out on loan again? Think Flanagan's contract runs out in the summer too.
    you're a johnson fanboy though
    just like i have my bias towards lambert i suppose - in my defence he's barely had a chance compared to balotelli.

    with johnson gone we'd need to bring in somebody experienced and keep a young one.
    the issue is that manquillo, wisdom and flanagan are all really good prospects.
    wisdom has been great on loan, flanagan was basically first team last year and manquillo is a promising spanish fullback.
    i don't think there's a future at the club for all three - there simply isn't space.
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    (Original post by Lúcio)
    you're a johnson fanboy though
    just like i have my bias towards lambert i suppose - in my defence he's barely had a chance compared to balotelli.

    with johnson gone we'd need to bring in somebody experienced and keep a young one.
    the issue is that manquillo, wisdom and flanagan are all really good prospects.
    wisdom has been great on loan, flanagan was basically first team last year and manquillo is a promising spanish fullback.
    i don't think there's a future at the club for all three - there simply isn't space.
    I think I'm just a little more realistic. A lot of people confuse potential with current ability so players like Flanagan (though perfectly solid) are hyped up to be the next Cafu. The youngsters may or may not get to that peak but in the mean time you have to accept that they have certain limitations.

    If Flanagan was 27, no one would be saying he was good enough to be playing for Liverpool. It's because he's still young and could become better.

    Well we've got to see if either Johnson or Flanagan sign an extension. Someone needs to decide if Wisdom is going to be a fullback or a CB in the future. He might be better off going on loan to a Championship side and getting 30-40 games as a CB if that is the future? No doubt a mid-table side would take him on loan again as a a fullback after his time at WBA where he's been decent.

    Manquillo is only on loan with us for one more year. Guess we can exercise our option to buy but then he could refuse to sign a contract with us anyway and go back to Atletico? Makes you wonder how much we should develop him on that basis.
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    I have a feeling Manquillo will stay at Atlético though. If he does well for you guys as Gamez and Juanfran are getting on so they'll want a long term replacement.
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    The attacking flaws in Manquillo's game are evident, but they are put in the shade by the way he conducts himself defensively. No fuss, no drama - sensible, sound defending. He'd be lauded if he were playing for us ten years ago imo.

    He's great at stopping the cross, too. Johnson rarely blocks an attack and that means our centre-backs are automatically on the ropes (and we all know how much of a circus they can be at times).

    Sure, he isn't great in an offensive position but he won that penalty against Ludogorets through determination and positivity, and in a defence where the other three have question marks over them defensively, it's quite refreshing to see a full-back who's made no errors leading to goals thus far this campaign.

    He's a bit like Steve Finnan in a way - and I bloody love me a Steve Finnan.
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    I really don't understand Ian Ayre's and Brendon's lack of movement in the transfer market, with it being half way through January already. We have arguably the two worst goalkeepers in the league, one of whom is injured, with Rodgers having no faith in the other one. Surely there is a goalkeeper out there to be signed, even if it is only until the end of the season?

    Rodgers still pinning his hopes on Sturridge coming back and being fit for the rest of the season also strikes me as crazy. Balotelli was a gamble that didn't pay off, Lambert although only a squad player has been awful and Rodgers already tried to sell Borini in the summer. Sterling is playing well but doesn't have the finishing required yet to be a striker at the level we should be aiming for. Iv'e heard rumours we want to bring Origi back from his loan early but again, is he really going to be our saviour? Again, surely someone like lavezzi is worth a punt for £8m?

    This is before even mentioning the state of the defence and centre midfield.
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    (Original post by Mackay)
    The attacking flaws in Manquillo's game are evident, but they are put in the shade by the way he conducts himself defensively. No fuss, no drama - sensible, sound defending. He'd be lauded if he were playing for us ten years ago imo.

    He's great at stopping the cross, too. Johnson rarely blocks an attack and that means our centre-backs are automatically on the ropes (and we all know how much of a circus they can be at times).

    Sure, he isn't great in an offensive position but he won that penalty against Ludogorets through determination and positivity, and in a defence where the other three have question marks over them defensively, it's quite refreshing to see a full-back who's made no errors leading to goals thus far this campaign.

    He's a bit like Steve Finnan in a way - and I bloody love me a Steve Finnan.
    couldn't agree more.
    he just does his job to the best of his ability; he's consistent that way, even if his general level of quality isn#'t as high as some others.
    stopping the cross is essential for us too, especially since our CBs panic and mignolet is hilarious when the ball goes in the air...

    he isn't THAT bad attacking wise though; he knows how to get forward and overlap, and his crossing is improving.
    he might not be able to take on a man that well but importantly he actually tracks back.
    moreno is very attacking, so manquillo maybe not being as much of a forward player isn't a terrible deal.

    and that's the main thing - errors leading to goals.
    it's depressing how many errors we have; the united game was probably the most painful way to see it.
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    (Original post by xHitmanx)
    I really don't understand Ian Ayre's and Brendon's lack of movement in the transfer market, with it being half way through January already. We have arguably the two worst goalkeepers in the league, one of whom is injured, with Rodgers having no faith in the other one. Surely there is a goalkeeper out there to be signed, even if it is only until the end of the season?

    Rodgers still pinning his hopes on Sturridge coming back and being fit for the rest of the season also strikes me as crazy. Balotelli was a gamble that didn't pay off, Lambert although only a squad player has been awful and Rodgers already tried to sell Borini in the summer. Sterling is playing well but doesn't have the finishing required yet to be a striker at the level we should be aiming for. Iv'e heard rumours we want to bring Origi back from his loan early but again, is he really going to be our saviour? Again, surely someone like lavezzi is worth a punt for £8m?

    This is before even mentioning the state of the defence and centre midfield.
    Can you think of any goalkeepers who are available? We should've tried to sign Valdes but what can you do now. Otherwise it's stupid to overpay for a GK now when we'll have to give like a 4 year contract.

    Perhaps we could offer a 6 month loan to Barcelona for ter Stegen?

    Lavezzi isn't a like for like replacement for Sturridge either. And he lacks clinical finishing. I'd be pleased with Lavezzi too but as he'd be an extra option rather than the player who gets us top4/win EL.
 
 
 
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