Also, which of Arsenal’s players should be turning out for a “pub team”, who Chelsea miss and what Manchester United need to change.
If you have anything to add on any subject, you know what to do – post on the Your Say forum right here.
Liverpool’s striker woes
Origi is the new Ngog.
I think Klopp will soon realise (if he hasn’t already) that he either gets to the bottom of Sturridge’s injury problems and fixes them, or he changes him out and builds around somebody else.
No doubt he is talented, but he is no use on the physios couch
Arsenal’s ‘pub team footballers’
I don’t really care for the Carling Cup. It doesn’t bother me too much that we are out but the manner of the defeat and the implications it could have are concerning. Obviously it could have been different had the OX and then Theo not been injured but what we saw from a defensive point of view was simply not acceptable. For a time, Debuchy and Gibbs were first choice at this club and Per Mertesacker is the skipper. Tonight, they played like absolute pub team footballers. Debuchy appears to have lost the plot entirely. He has come back from injury overweight, slow and uninterested. Mertesacker looked like he simply could not be bothered tonight.
Along with Flamini and Giroud, he displayed a complete lack of leadership when we needed it most. One of the biggest concerns for me is Calum Chambers. I have said it before and I maintain that he looks nothing like a PL central defender. I am yet to see him impose himself on a game or even a player for that matter. He loses pretty much every header he goes for and is nowhere near physical enough to cut it at the minute. He needs to go out on loan for a season and try and develop into the role. The importance of the defensive performance is connected to how well and how far we can go this season. these players are all very much first team squad members and at some stage will need to come in and do a job at some point. Performing like that will not do. Nothing about tonight went right but let’s just hope it was a very ugly blip.
We actually miss Andre Schurrle, a player who was willing to run in behind the defence without the ball! Plus he didn’t mind taking a shot outside of the box.
Under pressure managers?
So, with Tim Sherwood being sacked, and a list of previously sacked managers being linked to the vacant role – I wondered if there was any real pressure in football management? What were Tim’s credentials to take on the Villa job? He’s just walked away with a £2m pay off and will certainly get another job in the not too distant future. Why is there a pantheon of failed managers linked to every job in the UK – Allardyce, Bruce, Moyes, Pulis, Pardew, Poyet, MClaren etc. They’ve all been sacked yet, whenever a vacant position becomes available, one of them gets the job? I don’t really understand it. Surely Tim Sherwood just thought to himself, “I’ll try to make it work at Villa and if not I’ll walk away with £2m!” Mourinho will be next (although he is a proven manager) but he’ll just walk into one of the Milan jobs or PSG. It really doesn’t matter if Football Managers fail, does it?
Manchester United’s ‘possession obsession’
I think we all know that Manchester United’s problem lies with the lack of guaranteed killer instinct to maximize on the fact that we dominate possession so well; recovering and keeping the ball expertly.
Besides the Rooney issue, who can fix this problem for us? If, for example we had a bona ride world beating dribbler (a game breaker) to solve the problem like Bale, Robben, Messi or the like I’m pretty sure we would comfortably sit atop the league at this point.
Inside the squad we have Memphis and Martial as the only two players I believe could fill this role week in, week out in 1 or 2 years. Right now, however, we don’t have this person (Di Maria *cough cough*).
Without questioning van Gaal and his possession obsession, does anyone think there is a viable player for us to purchase who is available and would fill this “game breaker” role??
So Colo’s red has been rescinded and rightly so. Makes quite a lot of the previous comments look quite silly. At worst it was a pen and a yellow but even the FA have deemed it wrong. Hopefully the referee is punished and removed from the league for a few weeks because it was such a blatant cock up. Only ray of light is the fact the mackems are certain to go down, horrendous team.
Stoke’s cup heroes
What a night that was!
I actually thought we were poor in the first half and that Shawcross looked nowhere near fit, but in the second half we were much better (Walters should have won it for us), and the spirit we showed in extra time was just immense.
We didn’t actually play that well IMO, yet I reckon there were at least seven players who you couldn’t have argued against if they’d get MOTM!
Butland for the penalty save and several good ones befor that.
Shawcross, who somehow was still winning headers after 120 minutes after not playing since July!
Wollscheid, who continues to prove people wrong and was excellent throughout.
Wilson, who had a nightmare on Saturday but barely put a foot wrong and then had the bottle to take a penalty.
Whelan, who was as outstanding as ever.
Arnuatovic, who gave Zouma the runaround all night
Diouf just for carrying on and for that run in extra-time!
Walters for the goal and for running himself into the ground as usual.
Adam was also excellent. Afellay was quiet and Bardsley reminded us why we needed a new right-back, but that was a fantastic team performance. Now let’s follow it up at Newcastle.