I would bring Rhys back for this one, Phillips is better for the physical teams.
Becker, Trent, Rhys, Fabinho, Robertson, Gini, Henderson, Ox, Salah, Firmino, Mane.
Might be a bit soon to start Thiago but if he’s up to it he replaces the Ox.
Southampton are far better than Newcastle so we need to put our chances away.
Well, I was unduly optimistic in the last pre-match thread so feel I should temper it a tad. The commitment in the past couple of games just hasn’t been there. Movement off the ball has been poor, build-up play has been slow and unimaginative, and don’t get me started on the team knocking it about slowly in defence in the 90th minute.
That all said, Thiago starting would make a huge difference. He brings others into the game and just has such vision. I also expect the front three won’t be as wasteful as they were in the past couple of games. I’ll go for a 2-0 win…
I wouldn’t knock the commitment of the players, the runs were being made all through the game. I think the loss of Van Dijk is really being seen now, especially his passing from deep. Our mid 3 were too slow or unwilling to give that ball, maybe it was covered by the time they looked up? Thiago is the key for me, he can do it all. If he stays fit we win the league.
Whilst I’ve been banging on the Phillips drum, coming up against Danny Ings I think Williams would be the better option to partner Fab aas he offers greater mobility. Phillips has done well when given his chances, but his lack of pace is something teams will soon start to exploit if we play him against quick and mobile strikers.
We’re top. We’re not cos we’ve been lucky. We’ve been desperately unlucky. The injuries have been savage. The decisions ridiculous. We’re down about 4-6 points just on the poor refereeing. We’re not in great form and playing some way below our standard.
There are two teams going above 2 point a game right now. One of them is us. The other is United.
United have been lucky. Literally everything is going for them. They’d had no injuries of note, and they are been gifted a penalty in every game, seemingly on tonight’s evidence, even if a united player trips themselves up in the box. This is the very best they can play and the luckiest they can be.
Utd can’t really do any better than this. We can’t do much worse.
It’s a bizarre season. Liverpool fans have been focussing on our stuttering form, without really noticing everyone has been shite.
The prospect of Ings against Williams is a frightening one. As composed as the lad can look on the ball and in the air, he has the acceleration and top speed of an oil tanker. He will have extreme difficulty with the movement of Ings. As will Philips too, of course.
Best course of action is to just batter them into submission so as to make the efforts of Southampton’s front line inconsequential to the result.