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Football News: Fulham Vs Liverpool: A Red-Tinted View

Fulham Vs Liverpool: A Red-Tinted View
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This game had me worried as soon as it was announced: first game of the season, away from home, 12:00 kick off time. All the ingredients were there to make this as challenging as possible, and so it proved to be. We need to figure out how to raise our performance for these midday kick offs because they cause us problems time and again. It was a typical game in that we dominated possession but perhaps untypical in both the amount of shots we gave up and how toothless we were in attack (until the introduction of Nunez) .




They had a game plan: press us hard, induce mistakes, play on the counter. Overall they were pretty successful. We never looked settled on the ball and a lot of our players had loose touches, misplaced passes, and in general a real lack of sharpness in their play. Fulham worked hard and in Mitrovic had a striker willing to work hard all game and engage Liverpool's backline. He beat Trent in the air for the first goal and dived his way to a penalty he ultimately converted for his second. Fulham were sharp, organized, hard working, had a game plan, and deservedly earned a point. There will always be doubts about the defensive rigidity of Marco Silvia's teams and, when attacked with purpose they did look a little flustered. Teams who really put pressure on them will find gaps so there success this season will depend on keeping the goals flowing.



Alisson - he was decent, and did not really make many errors. His distribution wasn't great though, it would help everybody if it was more accurate. Didn't really make any noteworthy saves was just beaten by two strikes that were very difficult to do anything about.

Van Dijk - good but not great, he was another whose distribution we expect more from. I did not think the penalty awarded against him was a penalty although the tendency of the backline, him included, to retreat when Mitrovic had the ball was not helpful and just increased the pressure.

Matip - woeful, woeful distribution. Klopp may like him for his ability on the ball but carrying the ball 40 yards is pointless if you can't play a 5 yard pass at the end of it. Defensively he was OK, no big errors, but he also seemed slack and not quite on it. Improved second half but, for me, I want Gomez to be given a chance.

TAA - possibly the worst game I have ever seen him have. Awful distribution, passing and crossing, errant positioning defensively, was dominated for their first goal. Did nothing right, hopefully doesn't allow himself to have another game like that.

Robertson - another who could've and should've done better. Distribution wasn't great, defensively he was ok but he loves letting players cross the ball, should be tighter in my opinion. Overall average, I expect more. It's also clear that he and Diaz have yet to form a good understanding (like the one he had with Mane), hopefully that develops sooner rather than later.

Fabinho - not that good. Slow, didn't really break up their attacks well, distribution wasn't good, did not shine at all. Milner came for him and made a big difference.

Thiago - ok, distribution wasn't up to his usual high standards but he was decent enough. Injury struck yet again.

Henderson - OK, hard working, was at least a combatative presence in midfield, but also struggled to dictate the tempo and their pressing stopped him settling. Was fouled in the build up to their goal but unsurprisingly it wasn't looked at. Hit the bar near the end of the game and that was probably his best contribution.

Diaz - lively, by far the most dangerous player first half. His decision making isn't always great though and he really needs to add more goals to his game. Not convinced he should've been brought off.

Salah - despite not getting into the game for long periods he scored, but he really needs to be involved throughout the game more often. He was heavily marked, at least 2 players on him for the entire game, but he has the quality to give us more.

Firmino - I like Bobby I really do but that was poor. Little threat, minimal link up play, nothing popped at all. Was rightfully subbed.


Milner - came on and made an impact. Only midfielder who actually put himself in advanced positions and it helped disrupt their backline. Also had the toughness necessary to counteract their physical play.

Nunez - came on, scored, unsettled their defense, made things happen, changed the game. Is the result the same if he starts? Questions questions, but he provides a goal threat and he gives defenders a torrid time, our best players need to start games and he certainly looks the best centre forward we have.

Elliott - ok, good energy, technically very assured, but his decision making wasn't great and it meant he lost possession a few too many times. The ability is there but I think he needs more games, hopefully he will get them.

Carvalho - not bad, could've scored with his first touch, but doesn't really look like a winger to me and he certainly didn't do as much as Diaz. Will be a good addition to the squad though.

Klopp - truth be told I think his team selection was incorrect. Nunez should of started and if he does I think we have a far more productive first half. As it was we were awful and somewhat fortunate to not be more than a goal down. He made changes and these changed the game, but draws cost us last year and we've started with another one. Needs to figure out what role Bobby will play for us and if it really is for the best that he starts games.


A really lacklustre, slow performance with the outcome it deserved: a loss of points. We did not do enough, we allowed them to do too much, and we ultimately just weren't sharp enough. Cruising through games just isn't possible at Premier League level yet that is what players were doing. Most of them are experienced enough to know better, so we will be looking for and expecting better. It a worry to drop points first game of the season though and, if we perform like that, there will be plenty more dropped points. The big debate about us needing a midfielder has swirled all summer, and it took James Milner to lift the lethargy of that team today. Would a fully fit Keita, Ox, Jones or other midfielder have made the difference? It is very hard to see how. We can play much better, the question is why we didn't today, and Klopp needs to find the answers as soon as possible.

Written by Seano_ August 06 2022 19:45:22


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