"If you're in the penalty box and have no idea what to do, put the ball in the back of the net first. We'll discuss the options later." - Bill Shankly
I've been doing my rounds on various football forums as well as the Liverpool ones and of course everyone's disappointed. But generally, I think everyone must agree that we did try to create the chances, but we didn't put them away.
I started this off with a great quote from Liverpool's very own managerial legend, Bill Shankly. I think it's one of those lines that Rafa would need to say to the players currently, that is to stick the ball in the net. I've no previous record of being an amateur or professional football player, but I've played football before and it's definitely difficult to score a goal.
To me, I think that there's some reasons why our strikers are firing blanks (kinda) up till this point. Maybe it's down to the confidence of the players. The more chances you miss, the more probable that doubt will start to creep into the mind of the players. As said, the mind is a battlefield and if the players aren't mentally strong enough, they might find it even more difficult to get past the psychology barrier.
Secondly, morale of the squad and players. I'm sure Kuyt, Fowler, Crouch or Bellamy won't be feeling good right now, or maybe before the game against Chelsea. Getting tonked 3-0 by rivals isn't the nicest thing that can happen and that 0-0 draw against PSV is somewhat encouraging, but nothing more, nothing less.
Next, it might be the pressure, from the press or fans alike. Kuyt came with a reputation of scoring great goals in the Dutch League and I know many fans are excited by the looks of it, especially after THAT performance against West Ham, but inevitably, the pressure will start to mount on the player and the longer it takes to score the elusive goal, the more pressure there wil be, the more difficult it'll get. Peter Crouch is a perfect example of what pressure can do to a player.
Lastly, I think we should stick to the same two strikers and keep them in the team unless one is suffering from injury or fatigue. To me, Kuyt and Bellamy should be the first choice and Rafa should stick with it. But will he? I do not think so. He's known to be someone that is always searching for 'possibilities' and will try to change things and keep things fresh. But we really need the strikers to form a partnership instead of chopping and changing every week.
Against Newcastle in the midweek game and Tottenham at the end of the week, we must start to find the touch and score goals already. They're tough games, but mind you, these are home games and if we don't get the whole 6 points from this two games, then we are going to be in big trouble.
Trust me, once the team starts to click, then the goals will start to flow, no doubt about that. The team morale is going to be a little broken at the moment and luck isn't on our side for quite awhile already, but we just need a catalyst, a little something from someone to spark the season into life.
Monday, September 18, 2006