The dust has settled and emotions are not running so high now following our sober spanking at Anfield.
That we lost up there is no surprise and certainly nothing new. We have gone up their with better teams, better managers and in better form and come away with our tails between our legs. Liverpool are a great team and Anfield is the most intimidating of gounds, even for battle hardened teams, let alone a young inexperienced team. But, and you knew there was a “but” coming, the manner of the defeat was gross.
People say we were in the game until the 37th minute, I strongly disagree. We were never “in the game”! We just managed to hold them off until then. There was nothing about our game in that 37 minutes that suggested we could hold out for 90+ minutes, let alone somehow fluke a win. We were comprehensively outclassed and the underlying stats (the ones I wont stop papping on about) came home to roost. 93 minutes and and xG of 0.3 with just 5 touches in their box, suggest we were exactly what the stats suggest, a bunt powder puff force.
Apart from Ramsdale and perhaps Gabriel, every player looked below par for even an average PL side, never mind a top side hoping to be in the race for top 4. so let me pose a question, what is more likely, a failure of our system, or a coincidence that 10 players( plus subs) all have a bad day at the same time? The 4411 system that Arteta stumbled across was exposed. Our mid-field was non-existent, our defence overrun and our attack toothless. It was horrible to watch.
What surprises me is that this performance surprised a lot of fans. If they had been watching all season, looking even slightly beyone the results, they would have seen that it was almost inevitable.
We have somehow managed to find ourselves in 5th place, a great platform from which to build an assault on the European places, but an improvement , way beyond any improvement we have so far seen, will be needed for this assault to become a reality.
Anywho, here is the latest Youtube ramblings if you want to delve a little deeper into my analysis of the game and where we might go from here.
Have a nice week,