As of this season, Liverpool have seemed to be in tip-top shape, but two draws and a loss leave them at just third on the log (with points equal to that of Chelsea). With Sturridge and Suarez on the top of their game right now, the Reds should be dominating most teams in the Premier League, but somehow they have walked away with less than three points on three separate occasions.
We then come to the conclusion that two strikers, no matter how good, can’t make a team consistently win. It is also true that Suarez was not even available during the first two games that Liverpool didn’t win. So maybe, Liverpool are just having some bad luck with suspensions and injuries. We know that this is definitely the case, but it still doesn’t justify losing to Southampton at home and drawing to Swansea, thanks to ex-Liverpudlian Jonjo Shelvey.
With injuries, it is the job of the manager to come up with team line-ups that will allow every player on the team to play in a role they are comfortable with. Brendan Rodgers, on the other hand, seems to believe that injuries are there to allow him to try out some very experimental line-ups.
In the Liverpool vs Swansea game, Rodgers had little choice with his starting line-up, but the problem didn’t lie in his starting line-up decision, but rather in his choice to substitute Iago Aspas on in place of the injured Countinho. A more suitable choice, in my opinion would have been to sub in Raheem Sterling and play Sterling in Moses’ spot and Moses in Countinho’s spot.
Against Southampton, Rodgers chose to start four central defenders, which is rather questionable. Especially considering that Enrique and Kelly were both fit to play. Another startling decision was to start Sakho in the wingback position instead of his usual central defender position. To my knowledge, it is much better practice to start the more experienced player in a less comfortable position. Left wingback is definitely not part of Sakho’s arsenal.
Against Newcastle, there was another questionable starting line-up, when Rodgers decided play five defenders. There is not much more to say about this, because he had other options.
I’m not sure whether Rodgers likes playing bingo games or playing Fifa during his free-time, but I think he needs to spend more time on starting line-ups and thinking of what he would do in certain scenarios, such as Coutinho getting injured during the game.