Apologies about the late thread starting to all and sundry. Well, to @GermanRed anyway who remains my erstwhile and biggest fan.
Two goals up and at home so we really should be going through against these however complacency must be avoided at all costs. Against Inter we seemed to be in two minds about whether to kill it off or hold onto what we have without expending too much energy and the result matched the attitude on the pitch so here’s hoping we’ve learned from that.
Strong at the outset should be the way; back four the usual bar Joel’s rest day although I’d like to see Gomez get a run out next to VVD. Fab, Thiago and Keita with Diaz plus 2 upfront. Mo needs to find some form so probably him and Bobby but we shall see.
Late in the offing but off we go…
It would be great if Fabinho and Henderson could get a rest, even give them 45 minutes each. Konate and Tsimikas should start Bobby,Ox and Diaz also, smash them redmen.
With this one we just need to keep it tight defensively and the tie is won.
There’s no need to over exert anyone and we have the 5 subs to rest anyone who needs it. There are very few opportunities for respite before the end of the season but this is realistically one of them and I suspect City will not have that luxury - my hope is that their tie goes to extra time.
We are getting a Dutch referee Serdar Gözübüyük. His first time he referees beyond the CL group stage.
He is not horrible but he has a tendency to make mistakes when to play advantage or not and he is a bit full of himself. Well what else is new.
Interesting last name with the 4 umlauts. Is he of Turkish decent or was he going for the single most Heavy Metal name in football?
Two goals up, and a professional job to do at home.
Its a CL QF, so no room for complacency.
TAA Gomez VVD Tsimikas
Keita Fabinho Jones
Jota Firmino Diaz
Enough on the bench if required.
Is he influenced by home crowds?
This will be our 51st game of the season and I know there are some very tired legs out there; however, I would love to have one heavy metal game.
We don’t need it here. Maybe at Wembley on Saturday.
Heavy metal left with Gini.
That’s the kind of music our midfield plays now.
Some way of resting a few regulars while not risking the tie would be good.
Mo, Fab and maybe Virgil could use a break.
I think Mo needs a break, but I also think he needs a goal, just doesn’t look himself atm.
If we got 3 at theirs, chances are there will be plenty of chances on offer at home.
He’ll start, I reckon.
3-0 this time or I’m going to be frustrated again!
Would be nice if we could ‘manage’ this game out but we’re not very good at that are we?
I think the best policy is to start strong and try and score a couple of goals rather than be caught between two stools like we were against Inter.
I’d start Matip and Konate to give VVD a rest and then rest Matip for the semi on Saturday. Fabinho and Hendo should have the night off too but I’m not sure JK would rest both in the same game.
Front 3 is difficult. I really want Diaz to start at Wembley and would probably go with Bobby too as he loves a goal against Abu Dhabi and drops back to bolster the midfield better than any of our other forwards. Maybe start this one with Jota, Mane and either Divock or Minamino.
I’d start Jones only because I’d start Keita on Saturday
Two goals ahead and playing at anfield, Konate, Gomez, and Tsimi can come into the defense, Jones and Keita can come into the midfield, Diaz and Bobby can play up top.
Gomez - konate - vvd - tsimi
Keita - Fab - Jones
Mane - Bobby - Diaz
Mo needs a rest, looks jaded. Bring him on around the 60 min mark to give mane some rest. Bench will be stacked if Benfica decide to give us a game
Gomez Konate VVD Tsimikas
Ox Hendo Jones
Diaz Bobby Jota
Virgil, Hendo, Diaz, Bobby and Jota get subbed after 60 - 80 mins with 1 eye on Saturday
Mo is now a bit of a problem for Jurgen as he is a bit out of form so does he rest him tomorrow or try and play him into form with Sat looming?
I dont want to see a middle of Ox Hendo and Jones as all 3 are either not playing regular or not playing at all. Its only 3-1 not 5-1. Fab needs a rest so maybe Nabby starts this one? I was quite pissed he was left out on Sunday.
Go strong. Go 2 up on the night then rest the big guns. We have to start quick and not sloppy and slow like v Inter.
I thought he was improved against City. He had an assist and at least one decent shot on goal that had to be cleared. If he plays against Benfica it doesn’t have to be for the entire game. My only concern would be that he was fresh for Saturday.