Well that’s Christmas over for another year. Not a bad one this time for some reason. Only one large piece of Lego to put together which was done by 7-30am! By about 4pm I‘m normally going stir crazy and want Boxing Day to come for the footy but this time it was OK.
The indoctrination of number one son continues, amongst his presents were a Liverpool duvet, scarf and towel. He was also bought a Liverpool FC rubber duck from the Newcastle owner’s wonderful chain of shops! When the duck was placed in the tub it seemed to replicate our season so far – it stubbornly refused to right itself and although it didn’t sink it looked in poor shape! Either that or I’m being tremendously oversensitive about everything these days!
So to today’s match against Wolves. A few weeks back Mick McCarthy sent out what was to all intents and purposes a reserve side for their game at Old Trafford. McCarthy wasn’t kidding anyone. He didn’t think he could win that game so kept his players back for the next match against Burnley which they duly won. Perhaps it will be a damming indictment on our form if he fields a full strength side today because he feels he’s got a chance!
Since the Portsmouth game we’ve had all manner of quotes from players and commentators about how we need to improve. Strangely however, Rafa chose one player whose commitment is in not doubt as the object for his own “must do better” comments, Steven Gerrard.
“Steven knows that he has to improve but that for me is very positive. He knows he is a very important player for us and we were analysing his statistics and he is doing much better. In the last game he wasn’t at his level but that can happen in one game. He knows he is improving physically and the main thing now is confidence. I was talking with him this week about how to improve. He wants to give more. I am 100% that he wants to give more.”
I seem to recall Rafa doing a similar thing last season. Although he did emphasize that EVERY player needs to improve, it does seems odd that he should single out on Gerrard in this way when for so long he has been our best player and has often by example dragging us off the floor and inspiring victory?
Whatever the case this is must win game, we are fourteen points off the summit and eight points off fourth. Mascherano is suspended and would be injured anyway so reports suggest that Aquilani will start. Quite how Rafa will play this remains to be seen. The obvious solution would be move Gerrard into a more defensive role to accommodate the Italian. However as we are home, perhaps he’ll just go for it and rely on Lucas to shore things up on his own?
Prediction? According BBC no Liverpool player has ever scored a hat trick against Wolves. Hell, it’s Christmas so let’s go for it 4-0 with Fernando breaking the duck. And I’ll have Deep Purple each way for the King George
Enjoy the game.