Thursday, February 07, 2008

Stamford spoils shared

Not a classic. While I didn't think it was as terrible as some have said in the media, it could be that my emotional involvement in the match makes me more exited than a neutral would be. I thought we played ok without being brilliant. We made a few chances and restricted Chelsea to very few. It was a much better performance that I had been expecting beforehand. With Torres out I didn't think we had a prayer of a draw. As it happened, I think we could have won it. But given that nobody has manager that at the bride in around 4 years, it's not that surprising that we weren't able to, in our blunted state.

Crouch had a few chances, especially a header and a shot after a good pass from Babel in the first half. Babel himself had a good match but looked fairly knackered in the second half. He always gets subbed but usually looks wrecked after around 60-70 mins. Maybe our fitness coaching isn't as good as it was since Pako left. Mascherano was great again. It was between him and teenage mutant ninja Sktrel for man of the match. I thought himself and Carra were superb at the back. The defence has sorted itself out again now after looking really dodgy for a while there. I fear for Carra once Agger returns. I'm writing him off just yet, but he's going to find it very hard to compete with Skrtel and Dagger. The young lads have pace and passing ability which he lacks.

It's the back to the magic/romance/cliches of the FAmous cup at the weekend. The mighty Barnsley are waiting in the long grass. Do football teams wait in the long grass or is that just a GAA thing? Torres may be fit but I doubt that he'll be risked. I would imagine that he'll be kept in reserve for Inter.

Another Finnish midfielder is on his way to Anfield. This chap is called Simon Scrabb and is only 13. He's highly rated and will make a few trips to Liverpool per year for now and will move over full time when he's older.

There was bad news in the form of an announcement from Barcelona that they are going to sign Garay from Santander. I thought that Rafa might make a move for him in the summer. Our loss is their gain. I think he's going to be a world class player.


Thomas Kelly said...

I think you've got your Kop tinted glasses on for this one Mal, it was bloody awful. Are you serious about Carra? He's the heartbeat of that team. I agree that Sktrel looked competent, he made one excellent challenge on Joe Cole (could have been Ballack) that really impressed me, but Carra is superb. Certainly he doesn't have any great range of passing but ala Carles Puyol he's a right-place, right-time kinda guy who gets in front of forwards and makes a difference.

Can't say I have the slightest interest in the FA Cup on the weekend. More of the usual "yeah they've got good players, the Steven Gerrards and the Xabi Alonsos but we're not going to lie down" rubbish and lots of patronising comments about the Barnsley fans having a "great day out" at Anfield, like it's fucking Alton Towers or something.

I'd be quite happy with Garay should that story turn out to be true. He's very good indeed.

Mal said...

I did say that it wasn't a classic. Don't think that nit was a great match at all but we played ok.

I'm a big fan of Carra but he hasn't been up to his usual standards this season. Many reds think that Sami has been our best centre half. I'm hoping that he can turn it around soon and get back to his best. If he does then we have three top quality defenders fighting it out for places.

I don't have a huge amount of interest in the cup. Would be good to see some of the youngsters get a run but I've no time for the cliches. The comestic cups are good competitions to win, but never a disaster to be knocked out of, in my view.

Garay looks great from what I've seen of him. Barca should be well set between him, Milito and Puyol.