Sunday, December 24, 2006

Reds Sting Hornets

Liverpool Win Despite Poor Performance


English Premiership

LIVERPOOL 2 - 0 Watford

Scorers:
LIV - Bellamy (47min), Alonso (88min);


Match Highlights:




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A brilliant Xabi Alonso strike and excellent vision from Steven Gerrard were the only factors that separated Liverpool and a hardworking Watford team. During the match preview, I have pointed out that Watford is a hardworking team who are not afraid to get physical. The match proved my point and Liverpool were well stifled by Watford for most part of the match.

The Liverpool squad was almost the same as the one facing Charlton and it seemed that Rafa has already gotten the message that is constant changing and chopping is not going to work in the Premiership.

But Watford came to Anfield with point to prove. They’re a steadily improving team which set out to frustrate Liverpool and bombard the Red’s penalty box with long balls. When desperate times call for desperate measures, they even threw defender, Danny Shittu, up front.

They did cause some problem for the usually rock steady Liverpool defence. The usually reliable Carragher was caught out a few times and Reina nearly did the ‘Paul Robinson air-kick’ when he mis-kicked a Gerrard back-pass. With defence shaky, the attack wasn’t of any better as well.

Dirk Kuyt dropped too far into the midfield and there was a congestion in the midfield area, rendering Gerrard and Alonso with almost no space to weave their magic and thread their passes. Bellamy was left up front all on his own and was caught off-side far too often.

But Liverpool hit back instantly after the break. Gerrard found acres of space in between Watford’s midfield and attack, he took the ball calmly and as everyone held their breathe in anticipation of a Gerrard’s long range rocket, he instead, place a wonderful ball for the unmarked Bellamy, who had the composure to wait for Ben Foster to be on the floor before slotting it home.

Then Liverpool struggled to gain any momentum and then the match went monotonous. Couple of bad decisions from players caused Liverpool the chance to go ahead while we must applaud Watford for their never-say-die spirit. They kept trying and bombarding the penalty area with long balls. It was frustrating but it did cause some problem for the Liverpool defence.

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The game was all but over when the subdued Xabi Alonso fired in a sublime shot into the top corner. One must appreciate the technique needed to fire that and the beauty of it when it went past the brilliant Ben Foster, who has denied Liverpool on couple of occasions.

So Liverpool started the festive season program with a not so well deserved win. But the only disappointment for us Liverpool fans would be Jamie Carragher’s effort saved by the ManYoo loanee, Ben Foster. It would’ve be an icing on the cake. Watford, meanwhile, should take heart from this defeat as they’ve tried their best and worked extremely hard.


Drogballs' Thoughts: Terrible match to watch as a Liverpool fan. It was frustrating and infuriating at times particularly by Luis Garcia. As consistent as he is at screwing up the easy stuff, now he can't do anything right at all. I can't really recall him passing the ball to someone in the red shirt and the chance he miss at the end of the match was not very easy but for a player of his calibre you'll expect him to at least work Ben Foster.

But of course luckily, Liverpool won and I must say it wasn't a very well-deserved victory. Players looked sloppy and were caught out a few times especially the defenders. Reina being his very rash self, rushing out mindlessly and lacked composure. I can understand that the weather is cold and chilly over there while the ground is pretty hard.

But the praise would have to go out to Rafa and his team for moulding and making Anfield a fortress once again. Remember the last defeat at Anfield? It's beyond painful, but that was 14 months ago. Goals has been coming in as well although it seemed that we lacked the cutting edge today, 2 goals were added into our tally which is 13 goals in 4 matches and 0 conceded.

Bellamy seemed to be on fire right now but Kuyt's form seemed to have dipped a little. But he still continually works his socks off (I have been saying this since he made his debut for Liverpool) and never gave up. His attitude and passion is commendable. I'm sure he'll move on quickly from the low point and then continue to bring in the goods.

Our curse of hitting the post once ever game is still on with Crouch coming on as substitute and his brilliant shot was hit against the post with Foster stranded. It's perhaps the 14 or 15th this season and it's time lady luck begin to bless us with that little bit of luck.

Anyway, it's a good start to the festive season period where we'll be playing 4 games in 10 days. Packed schedules and bad weather are going to be something to be overcome by the Reds if they're to continue their good form. It's Blackburn next and hopefully, no one break their leg at Ewood Park again this time round.

3 comments:

Juan LFC said...

I liked the team yesterday. I think that Watford didn´t have any chance for getting points at Anfield. But you say things that are true.

There is a rumour in Spain that says Luis Garcia and another sapaniard want to leave Anfield. I hope it´s false but, in the case of Luis, the journalists don´t have any doubts.

Hafiz said...

Belly Christmas! for Bellamy ! .. uahaha

Chee Sheng said...

Luis isnt gonna leave... i guess Reina's the other one...
There was speculation for both that Liverpool MIGHT sell them, not them wanting to leave. Garcia said in the last interview that he likes to stay at Liverpool and hopes the fans can understand why he does flicks and stuff, and try to accept him as the player he is.
No way Reina wants to leave... he's just married, a child is on the way, given a vote of confidence when his form was bad earlier this season... no reason hes leaving.. Carra even said he a half-scouse already!
as for the other spaniards, im not sure... but i want a certain brazilian gone though, Aurelio hasnt been up to mark so far. although he still has half the season to make ends meet.