Arsenal v Liverpool
basically i was happy with the team selection last night, RAFA is very restricted with his options regards to his long term injury list and then with KYRIAGOS suspended meant having to change the defence which has been foundation of this great run of recent form.in defence i would have done the same, CARRAGHER at right back, bringing SKIRTEL into the centre.
as in my preview post my midfield would have been a little different AURELIO on the left to protect INSUA, but to be fair i felt MAXI and INSUA played very well together down the left and i can't argue with the selection. the rest of the team i feel i really can't argue too much about other than upfront. i think it was too big a game for N'GOG who i feel has lost a wee bit of confidence in recent games and a bit light weight for this game, i think i would have plumped for KUYT, although BABEL with his explosive speed could have started but think his work ethic comes into question, truthfully there are not many options at the moment up front.
liverpool's penalty shout at the end of the match
i felt LIVERPOOL did enter the match to frustrate ARSENAL and not give them the space to play the type of passing game that they play so well, and it worked so well with LIVERPOOL not giving them many chances to score one of the best in the first half was BENDTNER who when in on goal at the edge of the box hit his shot high and wayward.
i also felt that LIVERPOOL took the crowd out of the game with the way they frustrated ARSENAL. LUCAS had a half chance running into the right hand edge of the box which he hit just over. but in general the first half had very few chances.
the second half however became a bit more open, with one or two chances coming at either end with i felt ARSENAL shading the play.
then ARSENAL had a big shout for a penalty BENDTNER burst into the right hand edge of the box and AGGER commited himself to a challenge sticking his right leg out, BENDTNER saw this challenge coming flailed his arms as he hit the deck, the referee saw this as a dive and booked him with, to be fair no complaint from BENDTNER.
a big blow came for LIVERPOOL with the loss of CARRAGHER to injury DEGEN replacing him. shortly after ARSENAL'S goal came, they worked a good opening down the right and when the cross came over there was DIABY with a free header to bullet it past the helpless REINA.
after the goal i felt ARSENAL started to sit deep and gave up posession to LIVERPOOL. LIVERPOOL brought LUCAS off for the more attacking BABEL, and it was BABEL who came closest in the dying minutes cutting inside from the right unleashed 25 yard rocket which brilliantly touched onto the bar by a full stretched ALMUNIA . then in the last minute of stoppage time LIVERPOOL got a free kick about 30 yards out, GERRARD took it striking a jumping FABREGAS in the wall as he seemingly tried to lift his arms to block it hitting him on the arm in the process as the ball looked net bound, the LIVERPOOL players claimed handball but MR. WEBB played on the ball was cleared and he then blew for full time.
the LIVERPOOL players then surrounded WEBB leaving the pitch as they showed their frustration.
MAN OF THE MATCH- MASCHERANO worked his socks off frustrating ARSENAL'S attacking ambitions with his great tackling and reading of the situation.
POST MATCH VERDICT
i felt the game plan was spot on trying to frustrate ARSENAL rather than trying to openly attack them whereas they could pick you off on the break.
really felt workrate was great from everybody , the first time i saw the ARSENAL shout for a penalty i honestly thought it was, but when i watched a replay i though WEBB got it spot on.
to me game changing moment was CARRA going off, ropey for a few minutes at the back after he left the field hence conceding the goal which i think CARRA would have read the situation and came across to the centre of the box to defend wheras DEGEN got a bit lost.
i also thought PENALTY for the FABREGAS HANDBALL but wasn,t to be.
overall, i felt a draw would have been fair but when has football ever been that.
results elsewhere on the night were not too bad so let's go to MAN CITY get a result and put this behind us.
cheers for reading and look out for more posts