Steven Gerrard

Jordan Henderson Liverpool Captain?

Having received the sad news that Steven Gerrard will be ending his 17 year journey with Liverpool this year brought about a lot of thoughts and feelings about clubs security and how they move on without; such an iconic character that is very much part of the makeup at Anfield. The months surrounding his announcement has made a lot of fans questions who will the new Mr Liverpool and will he be a current player or a superstar bought in to create a buzz around the place during a solemn period.  It would seem vice captain has been bestowed the job to succeed Stevie and carry the team on to bigger and greater things.

Some people including myself have at times wondered why Brendan has chosen Jordan as an ideal character and having paid more attention of late I couldn’t agree more he is the best candidate. The first thing you can ask of any player is that they put themselves about the pic, harassing and hurrying the opposition and Henderson does this all game every game. Henderson in his time has shown he has excellent fitness and stamina through his tireless performances mimicking a younger Steven Gerrard who would run until the ball was out of play. We have all come to know and love a Steven Gerrard wonder pass from deep within his own half finding the feet of his desired team mate, with the captains absence Jordan has been doing this with no problems. Having found himself with new responsibilities he has become twice the player I thought he was. Jordan has instilled a belief into the team that every time we go out we can win the gam comprehensible. Every time he has captained Liverpool we have not lost a game and this could possibly come down to the sharing of responsibility. When you have a player on your team like Gerrard you half expect them to win games for you and this over reliance has cost us dearly over the years and now the team realise that they need to step up. Not only has Coutinho added goals to his game so has Henderson from all ranges.

Knowing we are losing a club legend that we have all loved to watch at his best, perhaps now is a good time to say thank you for all that you have done for the club and you have set Liverpool up for the future to prosper and go on to win many trophies.

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Should he stay or Should he go

After the events that took place during the Italy, Uruguay group stage match in this year’s world cup there has been some serious doubt about the future of Luis Suarez at Liverpool next season. After all, of the controversy since his arrival at Anfield Luis Suarez has only just managed to get Liverpool supporters back on side after what has been nothing less than a world class performance from start to finish last season.

The issues are not with his footballing ability for which he is one of the best players in the world at the moment but, with his stupid shenanigans that see him suspended for large periods of time. Luis Suarez has been banned in the last 4 years for 34 games without ever picking up a red card which, is a staggering fact showing how bad his antics can be. Firstly, Liverpool supported him through the racism case, then there was the bite on Ivanovic and now Cheillini is it time we said goodbye?

Barcelona and other large clubs in Europe are not helping Liverpool decide by beginning talks with them when the verdict is still out on whether as a club we want him to stay or not. Liverpool has done the right thing in putting a price on his head if any team wants to see him leave Anfield. £80 million is an extraordinary amount to pay for a player but it would not be the first or the last when you look at Real Madrid’s willingness to throw their cash about.

Despite all of the wrong doings and headline writing he does Liverpool would sorely miss our best player. Luis Suarez is not just a name on the team sheet he is our talisman, playmaker everything goes through him, which says a lot when you have a player like Steven Gerrard in your team. Luis Suarez was the first Liverpool player to score 30 or more in the Barclays premier league a feat that meant he surpassed Robbie Fowler’s club record of 28 in a season.

If you were to take away, all of the Suarez’s goals and assists, then the club will have finished beneath Manchester United seeing us finish in 9th showing how important one player can be. The old saying one man does not make you a team is starting to dissolve because the year before Robin Van Persie won the league for United, which would be difficult to dispute.

So Liverpool have two choices, support Suarez completely and trust this will never happen again and see that he continues to score goals at the tremendous rate he does or sell him and replace him with as close a replacement we can which might mean bidding for Sanchez or Falcao who are equally potent.

My England Line Up vs Italy

All the rumours are pointing towards quite a youthful attacking force to feature against Italy possible because of the age of the Italian defenders who are ageing. Cheillini will not have the legs to match one of several players; Daniel Sturridge, Raheem Sterling, Adam Lallana, Oxlade Chamberlain and Ross Barkley to name a few who would render the Italian defence cuckoo. The list of players previous are examples of the youthful nature of the squad proving England’s reliance on the old faithful is dissolving which can only benefit English football for the future. Realistically I can’t see any changes to the England back five including; Joe Hart in net, Glen Johnson at Right Back, Leighton Baines at Left Back and pairing at the back Phil Jagielka and Gary Cahill. This back five has been very solid and has built up a good understanding so hopefully this will stand us in good stead in our defensive duties.

Now for the holding midfield, we obviously have the certainty of Steven Gerrard captaining the side hoping to overtake David Beckham’s record appearances for an outfield player for England. Now the difficulty comes when deciding his partner, Lampard could add an attacking threat with his good goal scoring record for England or the more likely Jordan Henderson with his box to box antics causing more havoc for Prandelli’s side to contend with.

In front of the Liverpool pair I have really struggled with deciding who should play and in what position wide or central, another issue that came to mind is does Rooney actually deserve a spot on merit. My decision is as so; Rooney through the middle because the boys alongside him will need his composure and experience to help guide them through a game of this magnitude and importance. I have been a big critic of Rooney this year saying he should be the man to step and lead United through this tough time but actually looking at his record he has come up with 15 goals mainly playing as a CAM which can only be commended. If Rooney is to ever put to rest the whispers of his national team record then Brazil would be the time to put it behind him. Alongside him Raheem Sterling but despite his age and lack of game time in an England shirt he can really, really frighten the Italy Right Back into making numerous mistakes leading to England scoring. On the other side it would be difficult to say no to Adam Lallana as he has been consistently good throughout his England career, stepping into the centre of the field running at the defence causing them to back track and lose attention of the on running players. Inevitable Daniel Sturridge must start he has shown he is an out and out scoring, creating chances at will for example Peru where he curled the ball majestically into the top corner from a unlikely position.

England XI:

Joe Hart

Glen Johnson

Leighton Baines

Steven Gerrard

Jordan Henderson

Raheem Sterling

Wayne Rooney

Adam Lallana

Daniel Sturridge

Fear Factor

This season has seen Liverpool break yet another record which for us shows exactly the fire power at Brendan Rodgers’ disposal. In 11 games this season we have scored 4 or more goals a record previously held by manchester United who had 10 to their name. What signigicance does this record have and what does it mean? Liverpool are a force to be reckoned with, with a array of attacking talents who all seem to be on very fine form. Luis suarez being our marquee striker already hitting 29 goals in the premier legaue with six games remaining, who is accompanied by the second top goal scorer in the league Daniel Sturridge who has 20 goals complimenting those of his partner. Between the two they have 49 goals and are bidding to be the most lethal strike force in the premiership with a record of 55 goals still to be beaten. Obviously the strikers usually the take the head lines but with such young creative sparks assisting at every opportunity its no wonder why. Phillipe Coutinho has been an absolute class act this year helping out in all areas of the field dribbling from out wide and breeching enemy lines with delicate through balls. Raheem Sterling has been one of the best young players in the premier league this season gaining yet another man of the match against a rather lack luster Spurs side who faced ANOTHER drumming from the red men.

The fear factor is starting to get into Anfield visitors heads already putting them a yard behind the Liverpool players on the pitch. The vast majority of teams are now going to the home of the reds expecting a loss which is compliment to how Brendan Rodgers sets out his side. There are various things the other team fear about Liverpool this year but it’s mainly because of a certain Luis Suarez. With teams focussed on cutting him out of the game, other players have been able to step up and score goals taking the limelight from him which has helped him get more involvment in games. A very underrated part of Liverpool’s team, has been the importance of Steven Gerrard’s role setting up attacks. Gerrard is always in a pocket just ahead of the two centre backs which is a similar role to what he oplays for England which then allow him to pick up the ball and string play together. The passing range he has available is amazing, short, long range, outside of the foot you name it he can do it. A particular example of his ability to pass was his assist for Daniel Sturridge’s goal against Fulham at the Cottage.