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Dean Coneys boots

Who to trust- pundits or fans?

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4 hours ago, Dean Coneys boots said:

Many fans are trusting in the positives of the Liverpool performance and buying into the “webberlution” notion; that we can stay up having spent next to nothing to bridge the gulf between champ and prem due to the quality of our play and talent already here.

My understanding of the "webberlution" was that staying up is no longer the be all and end all and that developing young talent, playing attractive football, improving facilities and balancing the books all take priority over staying in the top flight.

I have no doubt Webber and Farke believe we can stay up but they have been honest about their expectations. Farke said recently that our aim is to be among the best 25 clubs in the country which obviously allows for the possibility of relegation. This is a far cry from McNally's "worse than death" attitude.

There's an argument to be made that we should be placing a higher priority on survival and I'm still not sure how I feel about our approach, but as fans we shouldn't be surprised if we end up going down all guns blazing.

Edited by Peanuts

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I disagree with the general idea that we took an attacking approach which left us open to Liverpool.

 

In fact for all the goals we had plenty of defenders and AFAIR weren't caught out by them counter-attacking for any of the goals. 

 

The problem was basically shoddy and nervous defending for all the goals, which had nothing to do with the way we approached the game overall.  Obviously the first was a good low cross, Aarons had a bad start and let the cross in, then Hanley miscued it into our goal under no pressure at all, you'd be embarrassed to have that happen at any level. Then for the other goals we had their CB being (not) marked by one of our fullbacks to have a free header from a corner, a rather fortunate deflection that allowed the ball to run to Salah a few yards out from goal, and then a simple straight diagonal ball into the box which should at least have been challenged by one of our CBs.

 

All of this is simply poor defending, which we improved on in the second half and I think a lot of it was nerves and first-game rustiness.  Ironically they probably missed better chances than they scored.  But if we had cut out those basis mistakes - and that's a key challenge which will go a long way to deciding whether we stay up or not - the game would have been much closer as a contest.

 

Going forward what was encouraging was that for the full 90 minutes we regularly opened them up and created chances.  For the large parts of the second half we were the better side.  Yes you can talk about Liverpool taking their foot off the gas ,but it didn't look like it to me.  I disagree completely with anyone who says Liverpool dominated throughout.  There was a reason their fans were dead quiet for the last 25-30 minutes and were leaving in droves after 80 minutes.

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I do get sick and tired of hearing about spending. I listened to some some chap from Villa this morning explaining why they spent so much and you couldn't disagree with him from his point of view.

But we have been told about self financing and how we will spend. Everyone knew. We all had our wished about who might come in but it didn't happen. Maybe we will find out in January if it is a plan to see how we fare and adjust accordingly.

But the season has kicked off and the spending over for a while.

On the pitch, I guarantee we pleased more than we upset on Friday. We will see at the weekend how we deal with a totally different team in terms of personnel and style. We were probably always going to look decent against Liverpool as they play a style that is open. That we conceded so many was at worst disappointing. Changes to the line up will help in that area and many others will do worse at Anfield.

Hopefully we will know by Christmas how we look to be adapting and whether our style is working in the Prem. But if it doesn't then so be it. I know what I would rather watch

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on Another day that score line could have been very different, the suggestion that Liverpool didn’t break sweat is absolute nonsense, their fans comments on forums suggest the opposite. If we break down their goals it’s an own goal that on another day gets cleared, the second took three deflections before falling nicely for them in the box, and the third and fourth were horror defensive mistakes. It’s one game and any doom prophecy’s are misguided at the moment 

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49 minutes ago, It's Character Forming said:

...for all the goals we had plenty of defenders and AFAIR weren't caught out by them counter-attacking for any of the goals. 

We may have been for the first one, Alan Shearer pointed out Pukki was badly positioned for our throw-in from the left touchline, which allowed a counter attack and cross from the edge of our box, which Hanley then mis-kicked. An important lesson learned there I hope. 

Edited by Surfer

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I could understand if people weee worried that we’d over committed men forward and were caught out short at the back by the counter but that didn’t happen, when the ball was played to their winger Aarons was covering him and the rest of our defence was in place. Just a failure by Aarons to cut out the cross , and then the slice by Hanley for the OG. To say that goal was down to us taking an overly attacking style of play or being naive is just nonsense. It was simply poor defending by Aarons and an awful mistake by Hanley , who was our only outfield player with Prem experience I think ! 

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I think it was more the point that the player choice was attack minded, the players were looking to push forward every time we got a sniff of the ball and the way we set up to defend was more about being able to counter attack than to defend a rebound or 2nd ball. There is a lot more to defending than just how many bodies you put behind the ball. 

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One thing I've not seen mentioned anywhere is that Liverpool didn't actually have a shot until the 15th minute...granted that shot made them 2 -0 up, but it's not like they were overrunning us at any point in the match...

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1 hour ago, cornish sam said:

One thing I've not seen mentioned anywhere is that Liverpool didn't actually have a shot until the 15th minute...granted that shot made them 2 -0 up, but it's not like they were overrunning us at any point in the match...

Yes, they did not have it their own way and we did play well going forwards and better defending in the second half and still able to score. The own goal and lucky ricochet for the second gave us a mountain to climb and at 2-0 down at half time rather than 4, our second half performance would have caused them real issues. 

I rather expect we got something out of our system in the first half and we will see better from here on in. Results will be what make neutrals sit up and take notice, because when we lose we are merely doing what they all expect us to do. 

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Another point on this, I remember a manager of a team that came to Carrow Road last season (can't remember, was it Blackburn ?) saying that basically to get anything, they'd have to be on top of their game, not make stupid mistakes or gift goals away, have a bit of luck and hope that we were at less than our best.

 

well, that was true for us on Friday too... IMO Liverpool were at less than their best, but we made stupid mistakes and gifted goals away, and didn't have that bit of luck.  That's how it goes in football.

 

I do think a lot of our players started to feel more confident in the 2nd half, especially Godfrey, Aarons, Lewis, Buendia and Pukki.  Sort of starting to feel they could compete with the players they were up against.  And I hope that is carried into the next game.

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This is a quality read and assessment of the match..

In the first of a brand new Monday column, Mark O’Haire (@MarkOHaire) shares his thoughts on one of the weekend’s major talking points from across the footballing globe.

Weekend Debrief: There's more to football than the final score

Liverpool kicked-off the 2019/20 Premier League campaign with a 4-1 victory over newly-promoted Norwich in front of the Sky Sports cameras on Friday night. If you missed the match, headline reports would back up your probable assumption that the European champions handed out a “thrashing” and a “drubbing” to the wide-eyed Canaries at Anfield.

However, anyone who watched the 90 minutes – or inspected the performance data post-match – would tell you that Norwich put in a bold, brave and competitive effort. Sure, the newcomers showed signs of naivety, yes, the Canaries weren’t great in their defensive transitions, but it’s true too that the final scoreline flattered Jurgen Klopp’s charges.

If we’re going to be governed by goals, Norwich conceded a daft own goal to break the deadlock, before a wicked deflection in the penalty area gave Liverpool a great opportunity to double their lead. Terrible defending from a set-piece – a reasonably low percentage goal to concede in data terms – ended the encounter as a contest soon after.

All three goals were completely avoidable. But not just in terms of luck or fortune, which the opening two strikes could be considered. The third was also entirely preventable, although how many players can genuinely say they’ll come out on top of an aerial duel with Virgil Van Dijk this season? They’ll be few and far between, that’s for sure.

I’ve seen suggestions that Norwich “offered very little resistance” and that the Canaries were “battered”. Other reports described a “first-half blitz” as the Merseysiders sent out a “statement of intent”. None of this is true. The visitors actually won the shot count in the opening 45 minutes and I’m convinced these reports are born out of outcome bias.

Were we governed by outcome bias?

Outcome bias is an error made in evaluating the quality of a decision when the outcome of that decision is already known. In this instance, we’re being blinded by the goals in the game, and not the process, nor the actual opportunities created and conceded at Anfield.

You’d have to be a dope to ignore the fearless intent from Norwich on Merseyside. Liverpool allowed more shots at Anfield on Friday than in any home Premier League game last season, and the Reds conceded five on-target efforts – more than any Anfield outing in 2018/19. So why are focusing all our attention on their supposed defensive flaws?

Firstly, Liverpool were below last term’s average in their Expected Goals (xG), shots, shots on-target and shots in the box figures. I know game state plays a part here and the hosts noticeably took their foot off the gas in the second period, but I’d still argue they were far from dominating in the first-half. Secondly, Norwich were without key centre-half and skipper Christoph Zimmermann.

Peculiarly, Aston Villa were described as “brave” and putting up “stern resistance” following their 3-1 loss at White Hart Lane. That was despite grabbing an early breakaway goal and facing a relentless Spurs side that pressed and pressured before finally getting their rewards for an assertive performance the final half hour. Villa were well and fairly beaten whichever way you look at it.

Ignore the media narrative

The narrative we’re fed by the media rarely reflects what was seen on the field. Jamie Carragher seemed confused in his assessments of Norwich throughout Friday evening; at one point, Daniel Farke’s men were praised for staying true to their principles with ‘Carra’ comparing Brendan Rodgers’ Swansea side to last season’s Championship champions.

But by half-time, Carragher was panning the Norfolk outfit for their suicidal attacking approach. Pragmatism was being pleaded for when – anyone who saw Norwich take top honours in the second-tier last term would tell you – it’s simply not their style, nor their strengths. Why curb your instincts, or what’s worked so well for you for 12 months?

Near the end of the contest, Carragher changed his tune again. “It may seem like a strange thing to say off the back of Liverpool winning 4-1 with 10 minutes to go, but against a better side who are more clinical, Liverpool could have lost this game.

Gary Neville also chimed in post-match, “On another day there's no doubt Norwich could have had three or four goals”. So why on earth aren’t we queuing up to pile plaudits on the Canaries for their adventurous approach? After all, this match was pretty much a free-hit for the newcomers – nobody expected Norwich to pick up points at Anfield on the opening day.

Sticking to your principles

Speaking after the match, Farke quite rightly stressed the importance of remaining faithful to the formula that had earned his side top-flight promotion. He said: “We have to stick to our beliefs. Of course, we have to defend a bit more solid, but it's also a few lessons for the lads on the pitch to learn.”

More sense was spoken thereafter as Farke added, “I know no-one wants to speak about it now after this result but in that first half we had nearly the same possession, we had more chances and more shots, but the reality is they had four shots on our goal and were 4-0 up at half-time. That is unbelievably unlucky. Our performance deserved much more.” Here, here.

What was rarely touched upon across the mainstream media was Norwich’s starting XI, with only Grant Hanley and Tim Krul enjoying previous Premier League experience. This is a young team, an exciting side that’s packed with potential and I’m adamant they’ll bloody a few noses over the next nine months, especially the sides looking over their shoulders.

Parallels with Bournemouth

Bournemouth are a fine team, and there are parallels with the Carrow Road club. Since promotion to the Premier League, the Cherries have pocketed just W7-D6-L35 against the Big Six – that’s a 73% loss rate with just 6/48 (!3%) clean sheets kept. Eddie Howe refuses to change tact against the league’s elite and instead produces against the lesser lights.

Bournemouth’s four previous campaigns have seen the south coast club finish 16th-9th-12th-14th for an average position of 13th. Why? Because they score goals, they attack teams and their audacious and courageous approach pays dividend. Last term, only the Big Six scored more than the Cherries, whilst just Fulham and Huddersfield conceded more.

Looking at Premier League records this century, the lowest-scoring side has been relegated 74% of the time across those 19 seasons. On three other occasions, the team to finish with the fewest goals (and survived), suffered demotion the following year. Meanwhile, in each of the last four campaigns, a team has shipped at least 67 goals (1.76 per-game) and stayed up.

The top-flight has evolved in recent years. The standard of coaching in the Premier League is at an all-time high – the best minds in world football are all congregated in England and it’s led to an exciting transformation towards attack-minded football. Clubs know the value of three points over one, and the days of Sam Allardyce and co. appear behind us now.

Use data to your advantage

So how can we avoid the pitfalls? Inspect or analyse games independently, without worrying about the final score. The result should be secondary in your assessments – the process is the most important aspect, and then you can understand if the winning team was dominant, deserving or even fortunate based on the available evidence.

Football is a low-scoring sport and luck plays an enormous part. The league table always lies and results do not tell the whole story. This is where data can help; even the most basic review of shot counts can help point you towards a team that are over or underachieving.

We can’t watch 20+ football matches every weekend and it’s impossible to see all 92 teams in action. Here, data is your friend. Would you continue to back a team that’s won 10 consecutive games 1-0 if you knew they had been out-shot in every game? You wouldn’t, so why ignore the evidence which is largely available? Ignore results, focus on the process.

*Published on 12th August 2019

 

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15 hours ago, lake district canary said:

 

The best way to be (imo) is to not accept what pundits say, not accept what fans say, not even to accept what you own view is....football is uncertain and difficult to pin down.   

 

 

Don't take what others say as gospel.....think for yourselves!

Crikey.... I'm off for a lie down. 

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Last season, there were people booing the team after 2 games. Yep... that's right. TWO.

Pathetic.

We know how it ended up. We didn't start well, it wasn't terrible and didn't warrant booing imo, but we won the bloomin' league.

Now we're in the Prem and people are writing us off after one game against, probably, the best team in the world right now. I appreciate the comments about strengthening the team and whether we've done enough etc. I agree that our CB situation should have been rectified but let's not just blame them. The entire back line was pretty dodgy in the first half against Liverpool. But they are young. They would have been crazy excited and in the second half, those performances improved. The great thing about our young defence is their ability to take info on quickly, change what they're doing and not let their heads drop- I think some posters on this message board could learn a thing or two from them. When Zimbo and Klose are back I'll feel a bit more confident though, for sure.

The point is, we really have no idea how things will turn out. We'll have some surprises in store and I'll reserve judgement until we are more than ONE game in.

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49 minutes ago, Gordon Bennett said:

I see the Pink Un main site is running a story on Michael Owen thinking we’ll entertain but struggle. 

Honestly, nobody cares. 

Ah yes, Michael Owen. Who could forget his amazing football insight?!

How can you NOT trust a man's opinions when he comes up with such genius as,

“Footballers these days often have to use their feet.”

Or how about?

“Whichever team scores more goals usually wins.”

Genius, Michael. But what about this?

“You’re on your own out there with ten mates.”

Fantastic stuff. Respected punditry for sure.

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