Latest from Liverpool Banter...

Yesterday Brendan during his weekly press conference decided to talk the talk and stated that he could see Liverpool finish not only in the top four but in second place.  Now don't get me wrong here because it is absolutely fine for a manager to have ambition.  The problem is, that ambition is totally out of touch with what the true standing of the team is.

So at the beginning of the match today, we had not only a team that were over confident but a team who although still not the finished article, had a lot of pressure piled onto their shoulders.  That was a sure sign that things would go wrong and they certainly did.

The day itself started with a minute's applause for ex-manager and player Phil Taylor who had passed away a fortnight ago - How I would love to know his feelings about the game.  It has also been arranged that everyone would applaud when the clock struck nineteen minutes to show their appreciation for Sylvain Petrov, who is winning his fight against cancer.

Today was the day when a fledgling Liverpool team would find out if they could cope without their talisman and only striker. Luis Suarez was as we all know serving a one match ban after receiving the fifth of five yellow cards.   The name of his replacement has been hinted at throughout the week and it as expected it was Jonjo Shelvey.  Now Jonjo has a terrible habit of hesitating in front of the goal and sending the ball over the post, so it hoped today would be the day, he found the back of the net - he did with a little help from Collins who also managed to tap it.

Liverpool of course appear to be unable to make easy work of any of the games that they play and today's game appeared to be split into quarters.  For the first twenty minutes, it looked as though the right formation had been selected by Brendan but as usual, the same old mistakes began to happen and our defence suddenly appeared to open up.  Why this is, I have no idea, because by now the players should have covered what are becoming regular mistakes in training.

The first goal of the game came during that period from none other than West Ham old boy, Glen Johnson who seemed to have the run of the left flank.  Several times, he managed to work his way past Matt Jarvis and it was not long before a thunderous short from him, found the back of the net.  Liverpool were in front and with Stevie G also have a shot deflected, at that point in time, although early in the game it looked as they could go on to win it.  Raheem also had a couple of shots at the goal, but again failed to find the back of the net.

If you know your Liverpool Football Club history you will know that today marks the 53rd anniversary of Bill Shankly's arrival at Anfield.  An arrival that ensured Liverpool became one of most successful teams in England.

He took over from Phil Taylor, whose death was announced this morning and I am sure all Liverpool supporters will join with in saying, Rest In Peace Phil and thank you for doing what you did for Liverpool Football Club.

Today was also the day that Liverpool began the game with a minute's applause for the young academy player, Stephen Packer who lost his fight against cancer.  Lucas tweeted his condolences to the family during the week and again on behalf of all Liverpool supporters, Rest in Peace Stephen and I know that your family will be comforted by the fact that you are now free of pain and in peace. They will also be aware that you will be looking down on them.

Swansea Bore Draw

By Faith Fulcher on Nov 25, 12 05:30 PM in Fans

There is not really a lot to say about the ninety minutes that I have just witnessed.  Liverpool Football Club are supposed to be a top class side.  A side that should be capable of beating the likes of Swansea but going by the performance today Michael Laudrup is doing a better job of getting his players to play the game of football.

I suspect I am going to answer my own question here, but why on earth were Stewart Downing, Jordan Henderson and Joe Cole in the team because they certainly do not deserve to be there.  I can only think it is because January is just around the corner and what worries me about that scenario is I do not believe that they will be replaced with better quality players.

Now you would have thought that Brendan would have gone all out to prove to Swansea that as he keeps telling the world, he has indeed moved to a better club with years of history behind it.  He did not of course and unless something is done about it very soon, it is my belief that the clubs supporters are going to start getting very rebellious.

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AHEAD of the Reds' match against Young Boys Bern in the Europa League at Anfield this evening, MICHAEL SLATTERY looks back at Liverpool's top five moments in the old UEFA Cup...

Today was the day that hopefully showed that Liverpool has finally turned the corner.  Liverpool were playing Wigan at home and it was a game that had already been termed as a must win game, due to our standing and lack of results in the Premier League.

Brendan had also chosen virtually the same that had played the previous weekend - the only changes being the return of Pepe Reina and Martin Skrtel, both having recovered from their injury and illness problems. 

Now Wigan of course is managed by Roberto Martinez who during the summer was rumoured to have been offered the vacant manager's position at Liverpool.  He was also the manager of Swansea before Brendan Rodgers took over and oversaw their promotion to the Premier League.  That of course meant that both managers were aware of each other's style of play and possible tactics.

That man of course was Luis Suarez who scored one of those goals that only he can score. 

But it could have turned out differently for Liverpool who after playing at a fantastic tempo for the first twenty minutes of the game, seemed to tire and lose their way completely.  Why that is, only they can answer and if the truth be known, they need too, because if not we are going to witness another season of draws and loses rather than the wins that we need.

The football as I have said for the first twenty minutes was wonderful to watch, with the players finally beginning to look at home with the pass and move style of play.  Within six minutes of the start it looked as though fate might finally have been on Liverpool's side when Luis Suarez was brought down in the penalty area. Then followed the usual calls for a penalty but referee Anthony Taylor waived play on. 

Why is that you may ask?  The answer is very simple because last night Liverpool showed that they are now a team not only in transition but one that come April, may well be fighting to stay in the Premier League.

Last night was the night that Liverpool as holders of the League Cup (I don't like any of the silly titles it is now given) should have done everything they could to have ensured that they went into the competition with a determination to keep it in the Anfield trophy cabinet.

They did not and it became apparent within minutes of the game starting that we were going to lose. In fact I will be honest here, I was sent the line-up on Tuesday morning and knew then that we had no hope of beating Swansea, but being a true Liverpool supporter put that to the back of my mind.

That shining star of course is young Raheem Sterling, who at 17 years of age scored a wonderful goal for Liverpool during this afternoon's game against Reading. 

Reading of course were previously managed by Brendan Rodgers and replaced by their current manager, Brian McDermott, who saw his team promoted at the end of last season.  That promotion at this point in time appears to have already run into trouble as they languishing in the bottom of the Premiership table. A table which, until this afternoon also showed that Liverpool are sitting in the fourteenth position. Liverpool are looking for their first win at Anfield since April and with a serious lack of strikers in the squad, it was anyone's guess as to where the goals would come from.

Now I know we have Luis Suarez but he is not a miracle worker which means that if any of the other players can score, then so be it.  Today was one of those days when he needed help because for all the effort he put in, none of his shots found their way into the back of the net?  Why this is only he can answer, but I put a lot of it down to him trying too hard due to his frustration.  There was also the added exhaustion due to having to travel half way around the world to play for Uruguay.  This meant that due to the journey back he did not have the recommended recovery time before the next game.

This morning a press conference was held in Liverpool Town Hall in the presence of the countries media, rather than just the people of Merseyside because Liverpool Football Club were finally going to reveal their plans for the future benefit of the club.

That future of course has centred around the stadium and for the last ten years, we, the supporters along with the residents of the Anfield area have heard many stories and indeed have been shown plans and photographs that have to this day, never bared any fruit.

Today, though providing all goes to plan signalled a change in direction for all those involved.  Mayor Joe Anderson announced that Liverpool City Council had been granted a £25 million grant to improve the Anfield area.  He has set up a Development board and the members of this would be himself, Tom Werner on behalf of Liverpool Football Club and Kathy Cowell of Your Housing.  Your Housing, for those of you who are unfamiliar of the name, is the Housing Association that has been chosen for the modernisation of the houses and indeed any new build that will take place.

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