Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Champions League: 4-4 Chelsea

One would suspect someone somewhere did not really want Liverpool to win the tie against Chelsea. Trailing 1-3 from the first game, it was a tall mountain to climb but since it is Liverpool, that was not impossible at all. And we almost proved that again tonight.

But of course one would argue that we are really concentrating on the League title this year. And if we were not involved in the CL, we could give full attention to the BPL. To me, the destiny of CL was in our hands whilst the BPL depends on the scums to lose it. Hence, it does not really make sense to throw away an opportunity of a silverware like what some fans have suggested so that we could fight in a cause that is really in someone else's hands.

Rafa started with Lucas in Gerrard's role with Benayoun on the left flank. With Mascha and Alonso dictating the middle of the park, we were 2-0 up at halftime. Even when they scored two goals, the game was still in our hands. What boggles my mind is how a kid like Lucas (he scored a deflected goal right before another quick goal that put us backinto the game) is given a man's role, when logically Benayoun fits there better. Other mindboggling decisions include taking out Mascha, after which Chelsea scored a few goals, taking out Torres when we needed to score goals that would have won us that game and taking out a defender when all we needed was one goal to win us the tie leading 4-2 with 8 mins left. Twice in the game we needed only one goal to win the tie but couldn't do it.

Rafa knows best I  guess. If one were to speculate, it would seem that Liverpool did not really want to win the tie. Therein lies the conundrum of 'what ifs'. The result was as it is because of the players started and the changes made. Who could really say of the end result if different players were started and different changes made? Maybe the score would have been worse for us and the excitement that eventually lead to much disappointment for fans around the world would have been missed altogether.

All in all, there is no denying that all the players on the pitch gave their all, and that's all that matters. We did not go down feebly and indeed we gave them a fight and a scare of their lives. Now, let's concentrate on the League Title by winning all our remaining matches and hope for the scums to lose one or two before the end of the season.

You'll Never Walk Alone!


kajang-today said...

bro, correct me if I'm wrong but Masch was taken out after 2-2, not before. At 2-2 we needed 2 goals to advance hence Masch's decision.
Torres was taken out after Chelsea led 3-2 with 10 mins to go. At 2-3 we needed 3 clear goals, hence Torres' decision. Sadly, no one, me included, envisaged Lucas and Kuyt scoring 2 quickfire goals to put us in the brink of advancing provided we score another in the stoppage time. Then, we sacrificed Arbeloa for another striker, going for the jugular but the move backfired as Lampard scored at the other end. Thus the heartbreak hotel.
As for Lucas, the decision was simply because we had no one other than him to play in the middle triumvirate. Benayoun operates better in the flanks, not in the middle. He's not good at tackling either. Benayoun harrying Essien?
No way Jose. On that task, Lucas was more effective but always you can rewind the footage and find who's the culprit not tracking Lampard for his 2 goals?
No teh tarik for correct answer but it was Lucas standing like a statue 3 feet away from Lamp on both occasion.
Go watch the replay back and forth, you would want to throw him a selipar Tat Seng.

Khan said...

true bro, pardon me but somehow I always felt in that game the substitutions indicated some forms of suicide. Even at 2-2 (57th minute), the game was still there to be won, and since mascha was not the culprit, so why take him out as 2 more goals would have been sufficient.
I feel that the two more goals scored by chelsea was due to Mascha being taken out. Even at 2-3, we needed 2 goals to tie it up, and who knows, towards a penalty kick. Why Torres I don't understand, the best striker in europe, for Ngog? Benitez mentioned he thought the game was beyond salvation hence he took out Torres (2-3 at 76th minute). That's like he gave up. That is not the way la when in so many games in this season we scored in the last ten minutes.
Taking out Arbeloa, truly a gamble with one goal needed, but at that time chelsea's backline was already in disarray, and we were leading 4-3 in the 82nd minute. That's like at least 10 minutes of the game left with injury time. And that reminds us of the games won with goal scored in the last ten minutes. We would have, if we made sure we did not concede a goal. Going for the jugular is okay but take out la the weakest link i.e. Lucas.
Mascha should have stayed while Lucas (Rafa said he played well btw)should have been out. I mean, come on la, everyone could see how he is not that great a player before and in this game.
I read somewhere (not sure where) benayoun excels at gerrard's position but because gerrard is better there, he doesn't get a chance. I recall the backheel flick he executed to pass to Torres in the game. But on the left flank? Okay, he can't tackle and Essien would have been a problem, and maybe Lucas is slightly better in tackling. But still, the kid should play in the reserve league more often to get some lessons for his overall game in league.
I have never been a fan of Lucas and until he come close to performing like Momo Sissoko or Mascha, I will not become a big fan of him. I am willing to throw my last pack of cigarette along with the selipar tat seng at him if I could.
So, in a nutshell, somehow in that game I have always felt Benitez had something up his sleeves. But in a wrong way la..