Will Man U win it again?

Will Man U will the Premiere League One more time again? It seam the only team that can take away point from here on is Chelsea! but 6 point just seems too much! Man United need to drop at least 4 more point for Chelsea to have any resemblance of a chance, granted Chelsea don’t drop any.

Liverpool on the other hand need to aim for no 3. but Arsenal have no Champion League game, No Fa cup matches too. so a win is vital against Aston villa today and the crunch game against Arsenal after the international fixture next week. we need to win not just for third place but also because we lost to the 3x this season.

Liverpool have a very good chance of reaching the final but the first hurdles to the semi-final is PSV. Liverpool can do it but they should be too overconfidence cause in football the difference is really small! Just remember Benfica and you will remember Koeman. It is bad experience isn’t it?

But only one Manager can do an Istanbul and if Rafa can do another one then who is to complain?

<i>The best thing that happen in yesterday games (Man U vs Bolton) is we don’t need to worry about 5th place </i>

Liverpool vs Barcelona(The Bull The Matador)

Rafa the tactician will decide, do Liverpool be the bull and hammer and bulldoze Barca’s shaky defense? Bombard them and with this smaller pitch it is even possible to play Crouch.

or Maybe Rafa will decide that Barca are good in the counter or maybe can dominate the center, so Rafa will the become the matador? Bait Barca, Move the ball and tired Liverpool player.

But regardless of Rafa tactics, Barca still have a chances. A factor that wasn’t available in the Camp Nou. He is Ronaldinho perfect partner. He is the poisonous tip that kills instantly.

Question will be ask, and Qusition will be answer. Barca still have a chances, with Eto back Barca chance have increase. But can Barca stop Liverpool from scoring? or Will Eto score the enough goal or maybe will just Liverpool buy him out next season?

Tune in tonite 6 March 2007 8.35pm Uk time!

Liverpool Vs Man Utd(All is not lost)

Liverpool 0 Manchester 1(John O Shea 92 min)

In a game of fierce rivalry, rich tradition and mutual hatred but respect, Two of the biggest England club slug it out once again.

If it were a boxing match Liverpool would be the boxer winning and dominating for 12 round but only with a lapse of concentration got knock out with a sucker punch in the dying second.

But alas this is football, whether or not Ferguson agree or disagree with Liverpool domination(Man Utd was lucky.) Goal is what really count.

Rafa had his tactic right, using just one out and out winger in Gonzalez to attack Neville’s at the right making him unable to overlap and leave Ronaldo alone to handle Gonzalez and Risse.

Xabi and Sissoko were dominating the midfield and Gerrard at the first half was given a virtual free role even if he was a right midfield. Evra too was pinned down, So both the Man U  winger was virtual asleep and alone for most of the game.

Man Utd only chance was on the counter or when the moment Liverpool Sissoko unforced error when passing or Xabi fancied dive that the ref didn’t buy. But even then the windows of opportunity was very short.

even Man utd best player of the season was very quiet. He was even more mature and new very well that he can not run at Liverpool Midfield was at the strongest for he were afraid of loosing their possession. Ronaldo has matured.

Liverpool this season is very vulnerable specially when the score is nil nil. They just take too long inr finding the first goal. This a weakness Rafa needs to address.

The result should have taught Liverpool to be more ruthless in front of goal. It was not just Man U, other team has manage to shut down Liverpool not by neutralizing the game but just by hanging on with Liverpool wastefulness. today Liverpool were punish!

While Liverpool has lost this game, all is not lost. Barca is a bigger fish to fry. This painful defeat should be a painful reminder on how to win a game or win the league.. Just don’t forget it.

Liverpool vs Man United (Double Winger vs Wingless formation)

The Game

This Saturday is the biggest game in EPL in term of them all. On March 3, 12.45 UK time at Anfield, Liverpool will host Manchester United. this game is bigger for the fan than against any game against City,Chelsea, Everton or Arsenal. Even bigger than any London Derby included the upcoming Chelsea vs Arsenal.

Manchester United

In football term, Man United is the second biggest club in England After Liverpool. In economy wise they are the biggest in UK and are one of the biggest not only in football term but in sport term in the world.
The city of Manchester and Liverpool share the North West area of England. Perhaps this is the much of the reason of the rivalry. But they have their own history and tradition plus their very own success.

They are the current League leader with more than 9 points against the second place. They are also the most form team at the moment. Only Liverpool can match them in term of form. Ohh how Liverpool early season was really bad.

The Winger Wanderer Christiano Ronaldo

Recently Manchester United was laboring a bit to victory. they needed a Ronaldo special to beat Fulham in last dying minute. That was after Van Der Saar magnificence saves and the post being very generous.

Ronaldo is the key to Manchester United. without him Man United becomes a potentially a very good side with him they can potentially be great. this year Ronaldo 15 goals and many assist are so crucial to them. Don’t forget his dribbling, counter attack and dive!

Hate him or Love him, Ronaldo is a very special player even as teenager he had so many quality. It was a shame that Houllier did not try to buy him earlier when given an opportunity.

But his Ferguson and United was his fate and to their credit help developed him in a way that Ferguson earlier failed to developed another Young winger wizard in Ryan Giggs to his maximum. <i>that is for another story</i>

The Team

Man united usually employ two out and out winger. This is a rare occurrence. Most top team when playing 4-4-2 only employ one out and out winger whether in international or top club level.

Those that employ double winger like Chelsea they tend to sacrifice one striker. Some Top Team even rarely uses an out and out winger at all. Liverpool, Bayern, Ac-Milan and various top team seems not to need one.

Even Brazil don’t really employ one an out and out winger at all, only maybe perhaps in the bench. Their width is usually supply by their attacking half/flank back who do overlapping run and hogs the touch line.
Ronaldinho and Kaka are no out and out winger.

Man United then employ usually a defensive midfield plus an attacking or just central Midfield. But this season Man United has no holding Midfield. They now employ two Central Midfield in Scholes and Carrick and alternate in their job as the holding Midfield.

with a formation in 4-4-2 with two winger, two striker and one central attacking midfield Man united possess one of the most adventurous team in UK or even in Europe if they choose to play like that.

Oddly Ferguson is not very good in a different Tactic. He has numerous time to play a 4-4-1-1 or 4-5-1 or even 4-3-3 formation. he never employ a 3 central defense with wing-back(last 10 minute don’t count).

In Europe he may try to change and adjust his play. He had failed numerous time and was as lucky as Liverpool in winning the Champion League with such an attacking side. But being defensive or controlling is also not an option.

Liverpool counter.

Liverpool may try to counter Man United as they did with Barcelona with some modification. That mean a formation 4-4-2 without winger. So no Pennant or Gonzalez. Liverpool will double up the both the flank to neutralize Ronaldo and Giggs.

Gerrard to the right, Xabi and Sissoko at the center. The left is a puzzle since only Risse is available. If Risse is push up then there is a hole in left back. Maybe Fabio is available or risk the new recruit. Maybe even risk Gonzalez as the out and out winger.

The striker is a puzzle. Kyutt will play but his partner is a mystery. Do we use Crouch height in a hammer with a less mobile pitch or just use Bellamy pace and reward his golfing antic? Maybe Crouch nose is a factor in this.

The key for Liverpool to win is to dominate the center and continue to tire Man United. Man United central midfield is really soft. No wonder they really wanted Owen from Bayern even when his leg is broken. But no matter how soft it is it can only be soft if you squeeze it.

Liverpool must play more actively and make all the Man Unites player work and run for the ball. Man United have many older 30 years old player in Scholes 32, Giggs 33, Nevilles 31, Larson 34 and Vander Sar 35. Wenger locker room talk should never be excluded!

So, Liverpool needs to play hard and make united work hard too. Liverpool cannot play a dull, slow and cautious game. But play an intelligent,active and fast game. and ten hammer them when given the opportunity.

But unlike Barca or Chelsea at Anfield but Manchester are very strong in the air. It is not so simple So he who score first will win the game!

Barcelona 1 liverpool 2 cont….

The Half time adjustment

After dominating for 30 minute of the for first half of the game, Rijkaard decided to add more attackers in the second half, He made the mistake of being over attacking.

His sub of Guily and Ineista unbalance his team in the defense and midfield department and giving up some control of possession with no compensation in attack.

Liverpool was not even tired yet and this measure made Liverpool job’s even easier. He should of allow Barca to continue to monopolize possession with a high tempo and constantly and patiently pin them at center and wing.

Rafa on the hand decided that Gerrard was struggling a bit with Ronaldinho, So Rafa instructed Sissoko to help. Gerrard move a bit up the right midfield and pin Zambrota at the left back from overlapping.

With no runner in Zambrotta or Eto Ronaldinho flick was ineffective so he needed to penetrate alone. But Ronaldinho was now surrounded by Finnan, Gerrard and Sissoko

Messi was tired and now practically out of the game so Risse was allowed to push up. And finally Liverpool Kept the center strong with Xabi and Sissoko shielding the defense.

with the strikers and Gerarrd and Riise pressing, now all the Barca’s back-4 was pinned down and with little help from their  midfield which became too lightweight. The Barca defense was constantly flapping, panicking and clearing their line while Liverpool defense maintain their composure and shape.

Deco and Xavi failed to dominated the midfield as both the outlay wing was neutralize , the defense being pin and little penetration from the center. By the constant pressure from the midfield and defense a few error were created and punish by Bellamy and Riise.

The Next Round II

Liverpool can now play Crouch and blitz Barca as they did against Chelsea earlier this year. The pitch here in Anfield is smaller so Crouch’s knockdown can not only benefit his partner but also the upcoming midfielder as they are closer to each other.

Liverpool can now play Argentine’s Mascherano as the holding midfield instead of Xabi. Liverpool can pressure Barca all over the pitch and all the time and then hammer them in the box. Only problem is they may be tired because Liverpool have a game against Man United the previous Saturday.

Barca will hope for a miracle in their star player. They will need to try to dominate the game like they did in the first 35 minute. With Messi fully fit and Eto back Barca need to constantly shift the attacked from left, center and right.  Causing Liverpool midfield to stretch and then attack the defense.

Rijkaard also need a proper Defensive Midfield who not only shield the defence but act as a holding and ball spreading Midfielder who not only distribute the ball to the attacker but collects it from his defence so that the defense do not waste possession or tempo.
How Rikjaard has wish that he was 20 years younger!

Help Needed!!!!

This blog has somehow a screw up date? anyone know what is the problem? It seams as if it is over 30 days off!!! please leave comment at the commment box! cheers1

Barcelona 1 liverpool 2

The Belated Post

Sorry for the late post but What a game it was and what a great nite too. Again Rafa has shown to the world why he is regarded the as the Master tactician of the new generation. Capello of Madrid was once regarded like this too but he is of Fergie’s generation. Ferguson currently rely heavily on his no.2 Queroz in this aspect of the game.

The Pundit

Before the game everyone was belittling Liverpool chance with their best hope of achieving a goalless draw. Jamie Redknapp even think Liverpool will be lucky to have an away goal? Lucky one? Well Rafa gave you two and a win too!

The Build up

The build up between Barca and Liverpool was relatively quiet. The only thing that seam to make news was the non-playing/non-singing events. There were no argument and heat between both of the club. Earlier Edilmison of Barca said that Liverpool were bigger than Mourinho’s Men. Indeed Liverpool are the true giant of Europe.

The Strategy

Barcelona overall strategy was simple. Keep the majority of ball, move the ball around the pitch quickly and attack. Don’t overextend,keep the pace up and attack from all angle.. left, right and center too.Constantly wear and tire the Liverpool player.

Liverpool strategy was to maintain compact formation all the time and to overpower them. Wait for the right time and hit them on the counter or by attacking from the air.

The Barca Tactic

Barca employ their basic tactic with a little adjustment. First Messi was restored to the left midfield even if he was fit for only 40 minutes. secondly Saviola nimbleness and quickness was preferred over the well known former Chelsea player Gudjohnson. Then the introduction Of Motta instead of Edmilson as a Defensive Midfielder to counter against Peter Crouch second ball. Barca had prepare a special play to foil Crouch.

The Liverpool Tactic

Double up the wing with Gerrard playing as a right Midfielder and Risse as a left Midfielder in a flat 4-4-2 formation with no wingers. The introduction of a athletic and fast left-defender even if he is a right back in the newly purchase  Arbeloa because mobility and quickness is more vital than power and strength in this part of the field.

The use of two striker instead of one as a measure to pin the opposing central defenders instead of the need to control the center. The use of Bellamy pace instead of what Rijkaard prepare for Peter Crouch height! This was the shocker that made Rijkaard in disbelief. The size of the pitch factor was the other reason why Crouch was deem unsuited for and even with the Karaoke incident Bellamy pace was chosen ahead of Crouch.

to be continue…

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