28 December 2010

Liverpool v Wolverhampton 12.29.10

3pm ET, not live in the US. It is available, for a fee, at FoxSoccer.tv and is delayed on FSC at 5pm. It's also on Sky Sports 1 in the UK, so there should be streams.

Last four head-to-head:
0-0 (a) 01.26.10
2-0 Liverpool (h) 12.26.09
1-0 Liverpool (h) 03.20.04
1-1 (a) 01.21.04

Last three matches:
Liverpool: 0-0 Utrecht (h); 1-3 Newcastle (a); 3-0 Villa (h)
Wolves: 1-2 Wigan (h); 1-0 Brum (h); 0-3 Blackburn (a)

Goalscorers (league):
Liverpool: Torres 5; Gerrard, Kuyt, Maxi 3; Kyrgiakos, Ngog 2; Johnson, Babel, Skrtel 1
Wolves: Ebanks-Blake, Fletcher 4; Foley, Hunt, Jarvis 2; Doyle, Edwards, Jones, Milijas, Van Damme 1

Referee: Peter Walton

Guess at a line-up:
Johnson Kyrgiakos Skrtel Konchesky
Meireles Lucas
Kuyt Gerrard Maxi

I hope Liverpool's put its mini-Winter Break to use. The club will now have to play eight games in the next 30 days.

I'm guessing the same XI previously predicted to face Blackpool. Gerrard will walk straight back into the side, ideally behind Torres or on the right instead of in central midfield. Agger's declared fit, and Hodgson has hinted at a starting place, but keeping the faith with Kyrgiakos seems more likely given past preferences. The long respite should see Aurelio fully rested, but Konchesky will most likely keep his place, to the chagrin of everyone but the manager.

Bottom of the table and winless away from home this season, Wolves will still present problems. They're a physical, resilient side who caused trouble in both meetings last season, only losing at Anfield after having a man sent off. Both Ebanks-Blake and Fletcher can score goals, but McCarthy's usually started one or the other – Ebanks-Blake more often than not. Matt Jarvis has had a breakthrough season so far.

Inconsistency and defense have been Wolverhampton's main issues: shipping two goals at home to struggling Wigan and three to Blackburn sums up the defensive woes. But this is still the same side that beat Man City and asked serious questions of Chelsea before that side's recent dip in form, hence the inconsistency reference. Injuries have also been a problem; Wolves are still without Doyle, Craddock, Mancienne, and Karl Henry.

In theory, at Anfield against the 20th placed side should present few problems. That Liverpool haven't played for two weeks creates fears over form, but also means the side should be raring to go. Liverpool have been consistent at home, unbeaten at Anfield since the beginning of October. While expected, a win tomorrow, whether a tight 1-0 victory or a stylish romp, would set the side up well for the upcoming crucial month.


Marlon said...

Hodgson out.

dARkDevX said...

Commenters' Excuse List
1. Rafa destroyed Liverpool FC with mediocre signings

2. Zonal marking is horrible. That's why the switch to man marking is causing us to concede so many goals since our players are so used to that awful zonal thing.

3. Roy needs time to steady the ship after the disaster of Rafa the Rotator's hellish reign.

4. Lucas Leiva is a poor player. We need to use spearing. He understands what it means to play for LFC.

5. The board needs to back Roy in the transfer market to bring in quality not quantity.

6. ....

After 20 years when i first saw John Barnes play and decide liverpool will be my team...i cant take this anymore. We're safely away from the relegation zone, cushioned by a 3 point gap! All season, our goal difference has been negative with the sole exception of being +1 once. I watched Bolton run Chelsea very close whilst Wolves did better than us-played us off the park! We're in for a torrid second half unless something drastic is done. Tired of complaining.