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Manchester City 2 Liverpool 1 (Jan 3 2019)

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Report by
Dave Usher

 

I wanted to wait and let the dust settle a little before writing this, as much like my boy Dejan Lovren, this game had me all over the place.

 

My head says we’re in great shape, with a four point lead having only lost once all season, and even that defeat was in a game of such tiny margins where we went toe to toe with the defending Champions and lost mainly due to not getting the rub of the green.

 

There’s so much to feel great about, I know that, and it won’t be long before I feel that way again. It's just that this one hurts. Right now I’m still gutted and pissed off. Not pissed off at Klopp or any of the players (not even Lovren, which probably puts me in a minority), just pissed off that we lost to THEM and generally irked about certain things that contributed to it.

 

I was confident going into the game but that was as much to do with how vulnerable City had looked of late than it was about how we have been playing. We’ve looked like we’re easing back into the blistering form of last spring, while City have been shipping goals and losing games. Why wouldn’t we feel confident?

 

The problem for us, as it turned out, is that City were desperate. They couldn’t afford to lose the game and there’s also the personal aspect to it; they’re utterly obsessed with us these days. From Guardiola to their press officer to their sad as fuck shitty fans, they're utterly, completely, consumed with us.

 

It started with us ending their unbeaten run and then knocking them out of the Champions League, and it's only gotten worse since we emerged as the biggest threat to their crown.

 

As a result of all that, we ran into a buzz saw. I’ve never seen City that fired up and frenetic before. Even their fans were into it for a change.

 

All things considered, it was a hell of an effort by our lads to make the game as close as they did, especially as I don’t think we played particularly well. We were too sloppy in possession for a start. We gave the ball away cheaply so many times and you just can’t do that against a side as good as City.

 

In a way that can almost be viewed as a positive. Had we been at our best we’d probably have won, even with City as hyped up as they were. Basically the game turned on a few key moments that didn’t go our way. On another day they go in our favour and we win. They didn't though, and we lost.

 

I kind of knew it wasn’t going to be our night after that crazy incident when Mané hit the post and the rebound somehow didn’t end up going in. It sounds stupid I know, as really there’s no logical reason why that should have any impact on the outcome of what happened afterwards, but when something like that goes against a team, how often do they overcome it?

 

 

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Yeah, I’d have shoed Bernardo Silva as well. The whining little rat.

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Great write-up, sums it up nicely. Not sure I agree on the 'half the ball crossing the line' deal. How does that get enforced for throw-ins and corners? It's easy to see for the most part when the whole ball has crossed the line for a throw-in and corner and there can't really be one rule for goals and another for throw-ins and corners. It was unbelievably unlucky that on a pitch around 105 metres long (that's 10,500cm) that the ball only had to travel another 1.12cm to be given as a goal. 

 

 

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Christ, you must be taking this badly because there’s no way you’d even mention the words “proper job” otherwise. 

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Totally agree with the point about playing it out from the back. It becomes so predictable and puts us on the back foot. There is a world of difference between that and playing it quickly and hitting teams on the counter attack. The tactical naivety of persisting with playing it out from the back despite it not working pissed me right off, for fucks sake acknowledge they are pressing us effectively and change it up. You could see exactly the same thing from them as well to be fair. 

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I made a few bob on Lovren to be booked in the game. It was bound to happen. He's mentally cumbersome and was a model to mess up after his chatter the last few weeks.

 

Biggest point for me is the ref. Absolute scandal that he was chosen. It stinks and will stink when he is bound to be given the game against the red Mancs. 

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What about Fernandinho slapping Robbo in the face it was deliberate and very sneaky, it was inside the first ten fifteen minutes or so and it should have been a straight red card. It wasn't mentioned at halftime or full-time at all.

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Yea good point mate, he actually got both hands up there -- he clattered Mane as well in the first few minutes

 

Not once did one of our midfielders kick him

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It’s a weird feeling but I honestly feel more confident of winning it after the defeat. I think the hurt of losing to them and the fact that it will remind our lads just how in the ball they need to be will see our intensity go up another level. 

 

The thought of leading by 10 made me feel proper uneasy, and I was worried about us maybe becoming complacent. I don’t think that will be the case now. Time will tell. 

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Aside from the Lovren stuff, I am in total agreement, Dave - a great write up.  I wouldn't put the first goal on him, that was a one-off situation that took everyone by surprise.  But overall, Lovren is a clown who is well below Liverpool standard.  The fact that he was so obviously targeted by Guardiola says everything you need to know.

 

I was one of those more focused on the performance of Liverpool than the performance of the referee - I wanted to go there as champions-elect and put them straight.

 

The fact that they were up for it more than we were is galling.  They were playing a "cup final" and their manager had them up fighting.  That should never happen.  Out midfield was chosen for the challenge and they weren't up to it.

 

Someone needed to snap that Bernardo in half.  Fernandinho was doing what he liked to who he liked.  Stevie Gerrard, we missed you, mate...

 

Anyway, I'm hoping that at the end of the season we look back at this as a temporary blip and laugh about it all being "back on".  How Liverpool react in these next few games will be telling.

 

 

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Good report. Agree with pretty much every part of it. So sick of City and their obnoxious fans. They were much more fun when they were a complete irrelevance before winning the lottery. I'm mainly sick of how we never seem to get the rub of the green and/or competent referees whenever it seems to really matter. Last 2 Champions League finals, the Europa League final, the Chelsea game at Anfield, even the 2-1 loss at City in the same season as the Chelsea game when a clearly onside Sterling was flagged offside when clean through - it always seems as though every major factor that influences the result seems to go against us. 

 

But we still have a 4 point lead. Who knows what happens next. Maybe in a week's time we thrash Brighton and then Wolves go and do a job on City like they did at Spurs and the gap opens up again. It's still in our hands at the moment anyway, and hopefully it will stay that way.

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2 minutes ago, mike23 said:

Good report. Agree with pretty much every part of it. So sick of City and their obnoxious fans. They were much more fun when they were a complete irrelevance before winning the lottery. I'm mainly sick of how we never seem to get the rub of the green or competent referees whenever it seems to really matter. Last 2 Champions League finals, the Europa League final, the Chelsea game at Anfield, even the 2-1 loss at City in the same season as the Chelsea game when a clearly onside Sterling was flagged offside when clean through - it always seems as though every major factor that influences the result seems to go against us. 

 

But we still have a 4 point lead. Who knows what happens next. Maybe in a week's time we thrash Brighton and then Wolves go and do a job on City like they did at Spurs and the gap opens up again. It's still in our hands at the moment anyway, and hopefully it will stay that way.

This game aside we have had a lot of luck go our way this season, it's unprecedented 

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30 minutes ago, Remmie said:

This game aside we have had a lot of luck go our way this season, it's unprecedented 

Yep, you're right. Certainly was a bad time for it to run out last night though. I hope we now get ridiculous good luck in every league game between now and the end of the season.

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No consolation now, but the full move start to finish for our goal last night was absolutely sublime.

 

 

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First half and the momentum in the match is lost in midfield, Only Gini’s got the quality required. Leaving Fabinho out of our team is only OK for resting purposes. Him and Gini must start every important game for us the rest of the season.

 

Fernandinho fucking ruled it out there for them for much too long.  Only after Fab came on we forced to control it. I fucking love Hendo and Milner for their hard work ethic. We need players like them. However, when it comes down to share quality they’re a tiny bit off.

Quote

 

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7 hours ago, johnsusername said:

I'm still waiting for the referee to blow for the goal with the ball going over the line. 

 

Even it had crossed the line you'd be waiting a long time for that biased cunt to blow.

 

And as if to show up his incompetence/ bias he should have sent Guardiola off for the way he behaved with the the fourth official. I know it makes no difference but the ref in the Champ league game didn't put up with any of that shit.   

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17 hours ago, Shooter in the Motor said:

Great write-up, sums it up nicely. Not sure I agree on the 'half the ball crossing the line' deal. How does that get enforced for throw-ins and corners? It's easy to see for the most part when the whole ball has crossed the line for a throw-in and corner and there can't really be one rule for goals and another for throw-ins and corners. It was unbelievably unlucky that on a pitch around 105 metres long (that's 10,500cm) that the ball only had to travel another 1.12cm to be given as a goal. 

 

 

 

With throw ins and corners they usually put the flag up when more than half the ball is out. I know that isn't the rule, but it's how its usually enforced.

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17 hours ago, RedHeadedRed said:

What about Fernandinho slapping Robbo in the face it was deliberate and very sneaky, it was inside the first ten fifteen minutes or so and it should have been a straight red card. It wasn't mentioned at halftime or full-time at all.

I didn't mention that because I thought it was accidental. I watched it a couple of times and didn't see anything that made me think it was deliberate.

 

What I would say is that if anyone could make it look like an accident it would be Fernandinho. But then why would he need to make anything look like an accident when he was diplomatic immunity from red cards anyway?

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Not watched it on TV, but thought we were denied a penalty at the end because of a handball.

Did this happen or not?

Not seen it mentioned much, but I had a great view to it.

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6 minutes ago, Code said:

Not watched it on TV, but thought we were denied a penalty at the end because of a handball.

Did this happen or not?

Not seen it mentioned much, but I had a great view to it.

<3 welcome home

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1 hour ago, Code said:

Not watched it on TV, but thought we were denied a penalty at the end because of a handball.

Did this happen or not?

Not seen it mentioned much, but I had a great view to it.

You are correct. He controlled it with thigh and arm. Players appealed, crowd appealed but it wasn't shown on replay at all.

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