Liverpool 4-2 Notts County – Lack of Killer Edge Haunts Reds

Picture courtesy of liverpoolfc.com

By Jonathan Carroll

A League Cup game against League One side Notts County was in front of Liverpool on Tuesday evening ahead of their Premier League game against Manchester United on Sunday. Brendan Rodgers faced a tough situation in deciding whether to play an inexperienced team or go with a majority of regular first team players and take care of Notts County early on.

After early goals from Raheem Sterling and a neat finish from Daniel Sturridge after some great ball movement, it seemed as if Rodgers’ plan was panning out nicely. Liverpool were cruising going into the second half and took their foot off the gas allowing an unlikely fight back from the League One side. Yoann Arquin headed home early on while Arquin was later involved in the equalizer pulling the ball back for Adam Coombes.

Picture courtesy of liverpoolfc.com

Liverpool were now forced to play an extra thirty minutes ahead of a big early season game against rivals Manchester United on Sunday. Another Sturridge strike and a fourth from substitute Jordan Henderson ensured that Liverpool progressed, but at what price? Injuries to Aly Cissokho, Joe Allen and Kolo Toure have yet to be fully assessed but needless to say the signs don’t look positive for these players to be available for selection on Sunday.

Picture of liverpoolfc.com

The conundrum that Rodgers faced was whether to select a youthful side or go with experience. Everything that could go wrong did go wrong on the night after opting for mostly experienced players. Extra time, three injuries all before a Premier League side took care of a League One side. Manchester United await on Sunday and a positive result is necessary if Liverpool are to compete with the top teams for points and more importantly finishing in the top four comes the end of the season.

Picture courtesy of liverpoolfc.com

Fenway Sports Group and principal Liverpool owner John Henry have a big question to answer where Liverpool supporters are concerned. With the transfer window coming to an end shortly, can FSG provide the financial backing to pay for quality players in positions where Liverpool are lacking. A centre back, a left back, a midfielder of some sort at this stage would be a bonus and a striker all sit on the wanted list. Who Liverpool are targeting and whether or not anyone will be bought remains to be seen. Squad players are insufficient at this stage and with so many Liverpool players moved on permanently or loaned out, it leaves Rodgers with a very bare squad if a succession of injuries hit. Sort of like Tuesday night.

Picture courtesy of liverpoolfc.com

The game itself saw a Liverpool side very comfortable for forty-five minutes get very complacent in the second half and were rightly made to pay for not finishing the game off. Manchester United on Sunday will provide a lot of answers as to what this Liverpool team are capable of, even at this early stage. Reinforcements are needed. This would be a good time for FSG to show their intent.

Liverpool

  • 22 Mignolet
  • 02 Johnson
  • 04 Toure
  • 20 Cissokho (Agger – 10′ )
  • 47 Wisdom Booked
  • 06 Alberto (Coutinho – 72′ )
  • 08 Gerrard
  • 24 Allen (Henderson – 65′ )
  • 31 Sterling Booked
  • 33 Ibe
  • 15 Sturridge

Substitutes

  • 01 Jones
  • 05 Agger
  • 10 Coutinho
  • 14 Henderson
  • 21 Lucas
  • 09 Aspas
  • 29 Borini

Notts County

  • 01 Bialkowski
  • 02 Dumbuya
  • 04 Liddle
  • 05 Smith
  • 24 Stevens
  • 11 Bell (Coombes – 82′ )
  • 16 Labadie
  • 20 Campbell-Ryce Booked (Thompson – 71′ )
  • 22 Fotheringham (Boucaud – 77′ )
  • 08 McGregor
  • 15 Arquin Booked

Substitutes

  • 23 Speiss
  • 21 Thompson
  • 25 Tempest
  • 28 Boucaud
  • 14 Coombes
  • 19 Murray
  • 31 Nangel

Match Statistics

Liverpool                                       Notts County

Possession                       55%                                                45%

Shots                                28                                                    10

Shots on Target                 9                                                      5

Corners                             8                                                      3

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One thought on “Liverpool 4-2 Notts County – Lack of Killer Edge Haunts Reds

  1. Jonathan, indeed it would be a good time for FSG to show some financial support to the club. Admittedly they got off to a good start in this transfer window with Aspas and Luis Alberto coming in from Spain and Mignolet from Sunderland. The latter looks especially like a good acquisition already with three fine performances under his belt. We are all realistic enough to know that we can’t compete with Chelsea or with Spurs (with their “Bale money” more or less in the bank already) but it would be nice to compete for players such as Christian Eriksen for instance – into the last year of his contract and available for less than £10m.

    If the window closes with no further players coming in it would feel like a huge let down. The decisions to send out Suso and Assaidi on loan could come back to bite us. As you say, a quality defender, an attacking midfielder and a proven striker would all be very welcome before next week. As I have also said ad nauseam on this blog I would be extremely happy with the return of an elder statesman / defensive midfielder by the name of Alonso.

    Let’s hope our modest upturn in fortune stays with us this weekend, it’s going to be a tough one but we can beat Man Utd at Anfield and a win would see us a whopping five points ahead of them even at this early stage of the season. Fingers crossed!

    Like

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