Let me get this straight, right at the start. I have not changed my views of Roy Hodgson as Liverpool manager. The only thing that’s changed is Hodgson’s approach and tactics which have in turn, changed my views. Rather than sit back and wait for the opposition to attack us, the previous two fixtures showed that the team was under instruction to press and harry the opponent right from the start. All of a sudden, Liverpool looked more like a team rather than 11 men roaming the pitch like the walking dead.
That solved the club’s problem from a defensive aspect but to win games, we’d need to score goals. Cue Steven Gerrard’s switch from central midfield pretender to his more effective position, just behind Torres. Fortunately, the changes didn’t stop there. Meireles was restored to his best position in the centre of midfield while Lucas was preferred to Poulsen as his partner. A genius masterstroke by the manager?
Not really. As much as Hodgson would like to think that the recent successes were as a result of his previously employed methods, I'd beg to differ. Everyone that’s properly followed Liverpool’s games (as opposed to merely watching highlights on MoTD and reading headlines) since Hodgson took over would’ve been able to recommend those changes with or without said methods. Still, in fairness to Hodgson, at least he either listened or realised those areas of weakness and made the necessary changes before it’s too late.
Anyway, with all due respect to Blackburn and Bolton, the real test for Hodgson and Liverpool will come this weekend, against Chelsea. We can forget the mid-week date with Napoli as it's becoming clear now that the Europa League is only fit for Liverpool's so-called B Team, whatever that is...