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Terrace Talk - The Steve Kelly Column

So that’s how the biggest month in our history begins; not with a bang, but with a whimper (of sorts). The very fact that Roy Hodgson was involved cut the irony so thick you could build a mansion on it.


Yet it plagued certain pessimistic red minds (who, me?) with unsettling foreboding. Yes, the possession stats, yes, the attempts at goal blah blah blah. Don’t tell me you’ve not been waiting for the one, thunderbolt, Gerrard-esque moment that’ll scupper everything. When it all seems to be going your way, that only gives some of us one more ulcer. It’s genetic.


We’ve come through the international break unscathed. Well, relatively. There was Keita, but that goes down in the book before it happens nowadays. Salah’s took another blow, with the obligatory extra time and pens and Sadio clincher. If they weren’t exactly bosom buddies before, it’ll be tense now. Trent’s injury was supposed to put him out for weeks, but there he was on the bench on Saturday. Hallelujah, praise the Lord!


Ferguson must have given up the same miracle prayer he offered for Giggs on so many occasions. Though that seems less likely than Liverpool messed England around. Hardly surprising when Southgate has been so ambivalent about Alexander-Arnold in the past. There’s a case for both sides, and it may even be offering Gomez a way back into both teams. He’s certainly got the crossing down pat, that was a superb goal and there could/should have been others.


I always felt with Joe there’s a dopey, complacent snafu around the corner. Not of a Traore standard, of course, more of an “I’m too sexy for my shirt” vibe. Even with those mutton chops. You’re not Wolverine, mate……


The semi final with City will still be at Wembley, the pig ignorance of the FA still awe-inspiring in its totality. I suppose when you’ve actually killed people, gridlock and empty seats are sort of a triumph.


During the Watford game you got a sense of premature let-down, that Super April really deserved a better curtain raiser. It called for an efficient performance, no frills or thrills. That’s exactly what it got. Watford stayed deep and shot out of the traps at any Liverpool stumble, which was worryingly frequent. Better teams will punish that, so you hope complacency is all it is, given what’s coming next.


Curtis Jones is in a quandary, like he needs to impress on the odd occasion he gets a start. Klopp must surely be saying that simple and patient is okay by him, either that or the lad’s too dense to listen. You would have got unprofitable odds for “Subbed on 60”.


Thiago’s a better example, the Barcelona plod ideal for stubborn opposition who won’t come out to play and need unpicking. Even he has moments, the back pass at Arsenal and the slide to keep the ball in for a rare Watford attack. Ninety minutes’ total concentration is obviously impossible, so we play the percentages and hope for the best, especially when the second goal won’t come. They all do it now, sit there and just wait for a gift.


As with West Ham, Watford had a bit of a cheek claiming they had been ahem robbed. Hodgson griped about a penalty that changed the score-line, not the result. That he even contested the decision would indicate relegation panic – or senility. Because we’re so good now, perceptions are skewed and teams barely in the game are presented as coming soooo close. Aggravating, but we’ve seen matches in the past when Liverpool were described as “plucky” and this is infinitely better.


Salah was sluggish, again trying too much when a pass looked on. He needs a rest, won’t take one. The manager’s kid gloves may be the way to go, and with the 30 days we’ve got coming up, perhaps rest is a pipedream anyway. There are options, which is the important thing.


Burnley held out for a whole ten minutes, reviving sour memories of 2019. That wasn’t a title ‘race’, it was more of a shuffle. Win followed by win followed by win. I could go on… Next Sunday can and probably will break that sequence, so it may not be like three years ago. It could be more like 2014. Gulp etc.


Steve Kelly


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“I always felt with Joe there’s a dopey, complacent snafu around the corner. Not of a Traore standard, of course, more of an “I’m too sexy for my shirt” vibe. Even with those mutton chops. You’re not Wolverine, mate……“


Happened to a couple of them yesterday I thought, poor passing, concentration not total, but still enough to beat the opposition, pretty much in second gear.


Just don’t make a habit of it please.



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Nah, not having that 'dopey' jibe at Joe. He was down in front of me when that incident happened.


Cant remember exactly what happened whether it was a poor pass or the Watford player intercepted the ball to Joe but, the Watford player nipped in, had possession and was on a break down the line.


All our players were committed to attack and we were exposed. Joe had to take one for the team there as their two forward players would have likely had a break against van Dijk or Matip who had pushed up.

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