21 March 2010

Will Liverpool win today?

They haven't been giving you any ammunition, have they, eh?

That comment was made by a colleague at work. A United fan, sometime last week. Losses to Wigan followed by Lille that week didn't help me. He was right, ammunition wise.

As much as I try to avoid something as relatively small as football effecting my life, I just can't avoid it. The mood does turn a bit sour until at least, the build-up to the next game. I tend to avoid talking about it never mind mentioning it here.

So unashamedly, after another week (and wins against Portsmouth and Lille in the return leg) I'm all smiles and more optimistic about the future. Not that I'm not normally optimistic. I'm a Liverpool fan after all.

I have to be optimistic especially when you hear idiotic comments made by so-called experts on TV. The Idiotic Comment of the Week this time goes to the guys over at 3E. After news broke of Albert Riera's negative comments about Benitez, the TV station latched on to this in their preview to the Lille game.

Rafa Benitez's future now hangs in the balance after Riera's comments on Spanish radio...

Something along those lines anyway.

Seriously? Hangs in the balance? That's as stupid as saying Jermaine Pennant's criticism of Benitez is valid. It's like saying Serbegeth Singh's opinion on how Ciro Ferrara should defend does actually count. No wonder Malaysian football is where its at when our best football pundit it this eejit.

Give me back Eamon Dunphy, John Giles and even Ronnie Whelan any day. I'm sorry Ronnie, you were a great player for Liverpool but as a pundit, you just come across as plain stupid.

Anyway, all ranting aside, do I think we'll win against United this afternoon? Well, yes AND No. It's never a whole-hearted YES when it comes to Liverpool, eh?

Yes, because Torres is back and more importantly, he's scoring goals as well. Gerrard has yet to hit the heights we're normally used to seeing but at least we're seeing him put in the effort over the last two games.

Equally important is that the back four has been as stable as it can be over the last few games. A bit shaky and not as solid as last season but formidable enough to blunt out most concerted attacks.

After that it all depends on the other variables. Knowing Benitez, he'll most likely go with Lucas, not withstanding the fact that Aquilani might still be out with a virus (what is this virus that's causing him so much grief anyway?). If he is fit enough, it wouldn't do any harm if he's thrown in as an impact sub at some stage.

There's also the choice of who gets to start on the wings. Kuyt or Maxi on the right? Benayoun or Babel on the left? Or a combination of any of the four mentioned? Maybe even Riera?

Whatever it is, let's hope Benitez repeats what he's done over the last few games against United and gets it absolutely spot on this time as well.

All the best to the Reds. My wife is looking forward to a cheerful week ahead.

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