The Central Midfield Thread

Gini left 2 years ago, how can we be missing him?

The issue with our midfield is we didn’t refresh it in the summer gone, and allowed us to get Oxlade/Keita as our only “peak age” midfielders. This is a collective failure from Klopp and FSG.

He’s played 2 games in a row and for as well as he started he has faded badly in both. “Resting” might not be quite the right terminology, but it’s very clear he doesn’t have the stamina in his legs yet to cope with being thrown in there without consideration of his physical capability. He has shown he is good enough to get games. At least for now though it is not a “set it and forget it” strategy and over the next few weeks he’s as likely to fade even more quickly as the stress of these higher intensity games accumulate, and so any game he is included for is still going to require us being prepared to use Hendo or Fab for 30 mins or so.

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I hate this idea that Bajcetic has to play every game now. It’s totally unrealistic to expect him to be able to perform at the level required.

Fabinho and Henderson need to remember how to play football again. We don’t need miracles from them, just an acceptable level of performance.

We don’t have much football over the next couple of weeks, I hope Fabinho and Henderson can return to some sort of form by mid February given the rest they’ll have had.

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No, other variables have changed.

All of our other midfielders have regressed individually from that period. Keita is perhaps the only one you could argue is at the same level.

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I don’t think it’s harsh. He’s the best option we have at the moment and it’s not crazy to think an 18 y.o. may not be able to sustain the level needed. Or Fab gets his shit together and forces him out. All I’m saying is he’s done enough to earn starts in the short term at least.

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after watching that game on Saturday, I’d almost swear that was the best possible midfield for a 4-3-3 lineup that we could field at the moment. Bajcetic reads the game really well and played off Naby and Thiago all game. got stuck in, didn’t let the Chelsea midfield bully him and some nice footwork (sometimes too much, got caught a few times) to keep the ball moving. didn’t give the ball away much.

Naby (when healthy) keeps showing why we bought him, if he was playing regularly he’d be world class without question in my mind. problem is, made of glass. such a shame that we got so little use out of him and our £53mil investment will end up walking out the door on a free on Jun 30.

Thiago, simply sublime on the ball. too many Hollywood balls that didn’t come off. You could see the opponent players waiting for that ball and they kept pouncing on it. Thought they actually played rather well.

we lost nearly all hope of 3 points when we did that mass substitution/line change. killed the flow.

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Btw, going by Klopp’s own words and philosophy, the premise of the thread is incorrect. You attack as a team ( see use of both fullback ), and defend as a team ( forwards and midfield press all over the pitch ).

One more thing that is important to note, there are no bad players in the premier league. You give any midfield player more than a second, he will pick up a runner.

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I think it’s fair game to critique Thiago, so fair play. And welcome!

Thiago has been the best of a bad bunch of midfielders this season, for me. It slows down when he’s on the ball, his passing is more misplaced than should be the case for a player who is so good on the ball, and he is getting tackled more than normal, and overrun a bit.

Stick Caicedo and Bellingham in there, and Thiago will shine. But in a funny way, you can almost say that about any of our midfielders. I might not look too bad myself, with Caicedo and Bellingham alongside :joy:

I want someone who will grab hold of it by the throat, not someone who would be good if we had other good players there too.

Obviously we can’t get rid of everyone, but in addition to contract expirations, I would not be bothered in the slightest is any or all of Henderson, Fabinho and Thiago left for pastures new. I don’t expect that to happen, but none of our experienced midfielders are giving us enough.

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Say it like it is Joel. :+1:

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Who is Joel?

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Someone on Twitter, so obviously a top-tier ITK source.

Thing is we don’t need 3-4 unless we are going buy more crocks.

I do think chucking Hendo and Thiago overboard is a bit much.

Yes both will need replacing but let’s start with replacing the ones who don’t have any kind of future with us.

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As the weeks go by looking more and more like you need 3 or 4 midfielders.

We are in unchartered waters here unless Henderson and Fabinho rediscover some form with the latter being appalling recently.

Gonna needs some serious cash in the Summer to sort out this sh** show of a season.

They’re not all going play at the same time, if you play a CM 3 and you can include the likes of Elliott and Carvalho if not then you need 6.

Bajectic, Thiago, Henderson are 3 you can also look at Jones and Morton.

what we do need is 2 solid CM’s that don’t spend most of the season on a bed at Kirkby.

Who ever signed 3-4 midfielders and made it work?

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Why let facts get in the way of a good moan, or a good wank over how much money can be spent?

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Ask yourself what club has allowed itself to be in a position where they needed to do so?

Robbo is a train, love him.

However, I feel like he might hit a wall somewhere in his 30’s and then have a massive drop, go back to playing CB in a 3 at the back for Dundee United or something.