We can’t go to Anfield and be so naive because if we do Liverpool are the sort of team that will punish you severely.
Billy Davies was quite right to show his concern ahead of the match. I hoped it would get ugly at Anfield and it did, bloodbath-style. No doubt, countless press reports will say Derby looked more like sacrificial lambs instead of rams.
Sadly, because either my laptop or the feed chose to be a complete bitch, I was unable to watch the second half. It’s an odd feeling to have your team running rampant but still be absolutely furious, just like they’re losing.
I’m just so angry that I missed the second half that I’m unable to properly write. Oh, who am I kidding? Six goals is like morphine – it’s hard not to feel euphoric after a 6-0 ass-stomping.
Looks like I’ll have to wait until Sunday and watch the highlights (maybe the full game) through Fox Soccer. *rolls eyes*
Through 101 Great Goals, here are the links to the goals.
5 Questions Answered:
- Assuming Rafa restores Xabi to the starting line-up (and why wouldn’t he?), who will fill the other central midfield role – Momo or Masch? Masch got the start and made his presence felt.
- Will we see more of Leto and/or Leiva on Saturday? Nope.
- Is it fair to say we’re making dramatic advancements towards the old Liverpool way of “Pass and Move” (but maybe with a modern twist)? The difference between the way we attacked last year and are attacking now is like night and day, tortoise versus the hare. Realize, at one point in the second half, we had Kuyt, Torres and Voronin all out on the pitch. The potential is scary.
- Given the talent/depth in the squad and the fact that Carra’s injury wasn’t enough to warrant a spot for Hobbs in the midweek game, what will it take for youngsters to see Premiership action (at least from the bench)? With the Premier League title such a priority, their progress will come a distant second, probably relegated to the Cups. There is too much first team talent to take a backseat to youth.
- For the love of all that is holy, can I please get another cleansheet for the sake of my struggling fantasy team, Clash City FC? Oh, precious, precious points!
Rafa was understandably happy but reserved:
I am really pleased with my team and we are playing well, scoring goals and keeping clean sheets. It’s good for our supporters to see us top of the league but we now have to keep it going and keep working hard in every game we play. It’s too early to talk about being top of the league.
In the first half Derby were well organised and played very deep but we managed to keep attacking them and got our reward with the goals. We have so many options now in attack and it’s good for me as a manager. We scored six good goals and it’s good to see Torres and Voronin scoring goals. Kuyt worked so hard and was unlucky not to score and I really liked Babel’s goal.
My thoughts on the
game first half:
- Derby look like a rec team. Not because of the quality of their play, but because of the adidas jerseys they wear. I understand the manufactor uses the exposure from the clubs to sell more of their templates to youth and rec teams, but the Squadra II is like the cubic zirconia of kits. I suppose it’s telling that they’d outfit relegation fodder with the such.
- Alonso scored a wonderful, if not bit lucky, goal as his long-range free kick drops in under the ‘keeper. Obviously, Bywater was expecting the ball to come off the head of Kuyt, but he didn’t make contact and the netminder paid the price. Xabi was 40 yards out, easy.
- Pennant seems right at home making runs down the left flank. His left foot doesn’t look any weaker than his right in putting service into the box. Twice in two minutes, Jermaine delivered decent balls to Kuyt who was wasteful with both chances, one with his head, the other with his foot. Dirk should have converted at least one of them.
- Babel didn’t initially impress in the first half. Inconsistency is a trademark of youth. But, right before the half, he took an intelligent pass from Arbeloa, sold two defenders on the first-timer, cheekily cut the ball to his right (rendering them useless, on their asses) and fired the ball home. A flash of brilliance.
- Mascherano is a bulldog out there. I love his hard tackling approach. But, ‘The Bulldog’ was Edgar Davids’ nickname. I’ll have to think of an original handle for Masch.
- Torres took a lovely ball from a surging Finnan, flicked it into open space, but punted the ball over. Unfortunate, but El Nino is certainly capable of exciting touches.
- Derby weren’t keen to pressure Liverpool up the field. It’s amazing the amount of space provided in this game. Quite the juxtaposition when compared to stronger opposition.
Next up, at Portsmouth, Saturday, September 15th.
As you may have heard, Rafa will be looking for a new #2 as Paco Ayesteran has chosen to leave the club. The reasons behind his departure, whether for another job or personal, are unclear. But, Rafa’s long-time lieutenant will be missed as he was responsible for both fitness coaching and assorted administrative duties.
Rafa has only said this about the backroom loss:
Paco has told me he wants to leave, apart from that I cannot say any more. We will have to assess the situation.
Surely, I trust Benitez to sort it out. Yet, at the beginning of a season with so much promise, you hate to see something that could serve as a significant disruption. Hopefully, the transition will be a smooth one regardless of whomever fills Paco’s shoes. Maybe this is an opening that will bring a familiar face back into the fold.