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Friday, 12 November 2010
WIGAN 1-1 LIVERPOOL MATCH REPORT
After that amazing result on Sunday Liverpool were hoping to build some more momentum on the back of that result. This was never going to be an easy fixture, basically there is no easy fixtures in this League especially away from home. Liverpool's away form has been a concern over the last year or so but after the recent win at Bolton much confidence has returned. A hectic recent schedule for Liverpool giving them no respite after recent games against Napoli and Chelsea, now with away games at Wigan and Stoke to end the week. I was expecting us to win this one but not by much as Wigan never make it easy.
I do like the way Hodgson seems to like sticking with a winning team, totally different with Rafa's ideas. But I believe you should stick with a winning team unless you are forced to make changes through injuries etc. So no complaints from me about Roy's team selection for this one, great to see Kelly starting again, he really is staking a claim for a regular place in the team.
Liverpool started the game like a team that has been on a good run of form and passed the ball about well from the start. Gerrard pulling the strings once again, puting Wigan on the back foot. Liverpool capitalised on their early domination with a brilliant goal on 7 minutes when Gerrard who was given so much time in the middle of the park put a slide rule pass through to the red hot Torres who brilliantly controlled the pass with one touch as he ran past the struggling Caldwell and then with his second touch shot low into the corner of the Wigan net leaving Al-Habsi beaten. It really was a tremendous goal created and finished off by Liverpool's main men. Liverpool could have went further ahead when a brilliant move from Gerrard, Torres and Kuyt was finished off with Gerrard shooting over the bar when maybe he should have scored. Wigan gradually crept into the game and Liverpool went in at that half 1-0 up.
The second half found Liverpool losing their way and Wigan sensed this and started to create problems for the Liverpool defence. Careless passing causing Liverpool so many problems for Liverpool in the second half. Just when you felt a goal was coming for Wigan, it came. A dangerous low cross from the right could only be parried by Reina and the ball fell kindly for Rodallega and he swept the ball into the net giving Wigan a deserved equaliser and giving Liverpool problems as the had lost their fluency. Liverpool never really got their passing game going again as Wigan looked the more likely to snatch a winner. Liverpool could have won it though, the best chance falling to Gerrard as Maxi slid a ball through to Gerrard but his shot shot hit the underside of the bar and bounced away to safety. I think a draw was a fair result and although it wasn't a win Liverpool kept their good unbeaten run going but a better performance will be needed against Stoke on Saturday.
I was disappointed that we couldn't win the match especially after taking the early lead and starting the game well, but once Liverpool let Wigan into the game they couldn't get going again, sitting far too deep at times for me. It has been a hectic week and the players did put so much into the Chelsea game so maybe they were a bit drained and tired, but I still believe Hodgson did the right thing by not changing the team. Credit to Wigan too they did work their way back into the game well, but I did feel that many times Liverpool's passing did let them down especially in the second half, puting them back under pressure. Positives were, not losing the game, Torres with another goal, I thought Kelly had another really good game at right back and I thought Konchesky had another really solid game at left back. Reina was unlucky at the goal as it was a dangerous cross in. Torres looking better with every game. Still onwards and upwards to Stoke and hopefully back to winning ways.
Man Of The Match - Torres a great finish from our hit man and great movement from him but disappointingly never got the same service thesecond half as Liverpool struggled.