Thursday, 25 October 2007

Benitez in denial as Kuyt and Voronin draw another blank

At the risk of this blog becoming dominated by football comment, I must follow up on the Liverpool story of yesterday with some observations about the appalling 2-1 defeat to a very average Turkish side.

My opinion that Kuyt and Voronin form an unworkable forward partnership has been reinforced by their ineffectual performance. The two players are both inclined to drop into deep positions to collect the ball and neither produces runs off their partner or along the line to provide a foil to the other. The combination doesn’t work Rafa!

Liverpool’s build-up play to the final third has been worse on occasions this season, but there were very few options for the midfield to pick out. The responsibility for attacking impetus therefore rested once again solely with Steven Gerrard.

The manager meanwhile decided not to remedy this with an early change. Rather he elected to delay bringing Peter Crouch on until 10 minutes from the end, giving the targetman very little opportunity to create an impact and lessening the capacity of Liverpool’s creative players to tailor their approach play to his introduction.

Why exactly Benitez wasted his time bringing on an untested central midfielder with 15 minutes to go, is a mystery only he could solve.

Disappointingly the manager appears to be in denial, praising Liverpool’s performance and blaming bad luck for the disastrous reverse last night.

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