Liverpool 1-2 Wigan – From Bad to Worse

By Jonathan Carroll.

Liverpool’s slide down the Barclay’s Premier League table showed no signs of letting up after lowly Wigan took all three points from Anfield on Saturday. Goals from Shaun Maloney and Gary Caldwell propelled the Latics to a much-needed win in their fight for survival. Kenny Dalglish meanwhile will need to turn things around and quick in order to try to finish in the top six.

This was an unimaginative, tepid and uninspired performance from Liverpool. It is easier to mention the better players, Luis Suarez and Steven Gerrard showed glimpses of their class, most notably when combining to draw the Red’s level through the Uruguayans fine strike while young Jon Flanagan at right back put forward his case to challenge for the starting spot. Raheem Sterling made his debut at the tender age of seventeen and in all of twelve minutes displayed more adventure and willingness to take players on from a wide position that Stewart Downing has all season.

The blame game has now begun. Who is at fault? Damian Comolli? Kenny Dalglish? The players themselves? Ultimately the manager takes the fall, always have always will. They are in charge, its their regime. See past tenures of Roy Hodgson, Rafael Benitez and Gerard Houllier for reference.

While some Liverpool supporters continue to live with their head in the sand and dismiss the contribution of the manager remember this, Kenny Dalglish will always be a Liverpool legend but that alone does not discount him from constructive criticism. There is abuse and there’s constructive criticism, the first comes from people who have no idea about football and the nuances of it, the second from people who want the best for their club and call things as they are. At times it may be hard to accept that Liverpool football club have not progressed but that is the reality. New players, same end result.

Dalglish’s win percentage is currently 49.15% from 59 games, Roy Hodgson’s was 41.94% from 31 games. Compare that to Rafael Benitez’s lofty 55.43% from 350 games which saw him dismissed. Immediate action on the current run of form is not what I am implying, simply there are problems at the club. The players looked disinterested today and a poor league season should not be cast over by a flimsy Carling Cup victory and possible success in the FA Cup. Surely all Liverpool supporters want to see their beloved team back challenging for the European Cup and Premier League title? In order for that to happen the current team must improve significantly and the efforts made by management towards that improvement (the signings from last summer) have not been successful so questions must now be raised as to where the club goes from here.

If your preference is to see things how they really are with an objective point of view and a touch of much need reality on all things Liverpool I have found solace with @FR_INC  @liverpooldeep and @SiClancy on twitter. The latter of the three probably taking more abuse than all of us combined for his honest approach to the current poor run of form.

Liverpool

  • 25 Reina – 5
  • 03 Jose Enrique – 5
  • 23 Carragher – 4
  • 37 Skrtel – 6
  • 38 Flanagan – 7
  • 08 Gerrard – 6
  • 14 Henderson – 3 (Carroll – 46′ ) – 6
  • 19 Downing – 5 (Shelvey – 73′ )
  • 20 Spearing – 6
  • 07 Suarez – 7 (Booked)
  • 18 Kuyt – 5  (Raheem Sterling – 84′ )

Substitutes

  • 32 Doni
  • 06 Aurelio
  • 16 Coates
  • 31 Raheem Sterling
  • 33 Shelvey
  • 09 Carroll
  • 36 Eccleston

Wigan Athletic

  • 26 Al Habsi
  • 03 Alcaraz
  • 05 Caldwell
  • 17 Boyce
  • 31 Figueroa (Booked)
  • 04 McCarthy
  • 10 Maloney
  • 11 Moses (Crusat – 42′ )
  • 16 McArthur
  • 22 Beausejour (Watson – 62′ )
  • 09 Di Santo Booked (Sammon – 81′ )

Substitutes

  • 01 Kirkland
  • 23 Stam
  • 06 Thomas
  • 07 Crusat
  • 08 Watson
  • 14 Gomez
  • 18 Sammon
Referee: Lee Mason
Attendance: 44,431

   Match Statistics

   Liverpool                                   Wigan

Possession                   56%                                       44%

Shots on Target             9                                             5

Corners                          6                                             0

Fouls                             14                                            10

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This entry was posted in Match Review, Premier League and tagged , , , , , , , , by Jonathan Carroll. Bookmark the permalink.

About Jonathan Carroll

I’m a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. Born and bred in Ireland I played Gaelic football and soccer while growing up and attended the prestigious Colaiste Ide in Dublin to prepare for a soccer scholarship to the USA. I played soccer at Thomas University in Georgia and was made team captain in my junior and senior years. I was honored to become an All-American in those same years. I graduated in 2007 and coached high school and collegiate level soccer programs incorporating year round strength and conditioning techniques with great success. I moved to Boston in 2011 and went on to work at Mike Boyle Strength and Conditioning. I am currently the head strength and conditioning coach for the Boston Wolfe Tones Gaelic football team. Qualifications: Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (NSCA) USA Weightlifting Sports Performance Coach FMS Certified United States Soccer Federation “D” License Football Association of Ireland Certified

4 thoughts on “Liverpool 1-2 Wigan – From Bad to Worse

  1. I dunno. The team has played good football, but it’s not gone our way. We’re at the point now where everyone thinks ‘here we go again’. Morale is key. And we have none. We’ve lost consistency. Too many formations. Too many linups. Too many changes. Voluntary and forced. Players thrown in to the big Time (ie the level of expectation) from mediocre teams with lower expectation where they could get by on cruise mode. In the 70s players like Kennedy, terry Mac, thommo spent a season in the reserves learning the way the team plays (and mentality) before stepping up in front of the Liverpool crowd. Right now, Kenny needs to decide our style of play and stick to it. Drum it into the players. Opposition be damned. They’ll learn it, master it, then we can tinker. It’s like an engine. You have to build it right to run, then adjust to get a better performance. As for the bell whiffs calling for Kenny’s head, let’s not become Chelsea yeah? If you can see what’s wrong, you can bet your ass Kenny does too. When the time is right (if it comes) Kenny will step aside. He is liverpool. More than any of us. Never forget that. He will put the club before everything. 

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    • We definitely don’t need a knee jerk reaction based system like Chelsea.However the blame for current situation lays partly with Dalglish.Some people have a hard time grasping that.
      The reserves today is way below the level needed to progress to the first team. Perhaps Raheem Sterling and one other will make it at the top level. The rest will need to be bought and the current policy is not bearing fruit. Huge amounts spent on average players and this is why we are in our current position. The lack of fight today is most worrying. What happened to the honor of playing for this club??? Poor mindset from those in starting eleven for the most part today.

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  2. Connecticut resident and Liverpool supporter who just found this blog. Agree with Jonathan that we need a balanced reaction…no need to sack Kenny but, clearly, we have not improved since last year & something needs to be done. The fault lies in our signings. We spent ~70m pounds on three players (Carroll, Downing, Henderson) to upgrade our play on the flanks and goal-scoring attack. Funds were poorly spent as we are one of the lowest scoring teams in the EPL. Carroll and Henderson have made essentially no impact, often not selected to start our most important matches. Downing is inconsistent and not worth the funds spent. If we had bought wisely, we would be contending for a top 4 spot.

    Seems clear that Carroll, though young, has not shown any glimpses of talent and should be sold in the summer for best price (cut your losses) and a legitimate target man purchased to work w Suarez, Gerrard, and Bellamy. I’d hold on moving the other two. If Comolli and Kenny don’t right the ship next year, then it’s time to consider making changes.

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  3. Pingback: Liverpool tries to end slide at Newcastle | The Red Letter

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