Bit of difficult piece to write this as not much has happened since the Bolton game.
Hopefully we’ll travel to the North East, to play Newcastle today full of confidence thanks to Friday’s result. We need to be as there will be no room to slip up, Chelsea and The Mancs will be expected to beat Fulham and Middlesbrough but then again how often have we expected all of the top four to win games that they’ve gone to draw, or lose, this season?
The good thing is that, if the press are believed, Robbie Keane has suddenly become a decent player again. Like he’s suddenly found his form under the Christmas tree or down the back of the sofa! I guess the long wait to see Keane start to produce is a testament to the old adage that nothing should be taken for granted in this game. When Keane joined us I honestly thought he would slot seamlessly into the side. Although I don’t think his form has been as bad as many have suggested, it has taken time for the goals to come which, rightly or wrongly, is what he will be judged upon.
The most disturbing thing has been rumours that Rafa has lost patience and that he could be off loaded in January. Even before the Bolton game some papers were touting Emile Heskey as replacement. Sammy Lee yesterday went so way to dispelling that one.
“I do not feel he has ever lacked confidence here, he has kept going and done well. We have had no doubts in Robbie’s ability or his work-rate, and what he adds to this club is immense. We don’t feel that Robbie has been out of form, despite what people keep saying. He has been working hard, tirelessly for the team, and that is the measure of the lad that he has kept on going.”
And so to Newcastle. Joe Kinnear, the BBC website said this.
“It’s not looking good for Liverpool. We’ve got about eight injured at the moment.”
A nice bit of reverse psychology but I suspect today’s game will be lot harder than the equivalent fixture last season where, despite the opening shots of Klinsmanngate, we won at a canter 3-0. The return at Anfield was equally as easy another 3-0 win. Team wise it seems that Torres could feature at some stage and Mascherano has recovered from illness. Rafa is also down from the stands and back on the bench.
Prediction? The atmosphere is likely to be big so I guess we could do a lot worse than spiking it with an early strike? Newcastle appear to be a tougher prospect under Joe Kinnear, but I can’t see us losing and take us to prevail by 2-0.
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