Next up for Liverpool in the Premier League is a trip to Upton Park. This will be no easy task considering the rich vein of form West Ham are currently in. Last time out, West Ham got the better of Chelsea in a 3-1 win. Liverpool will be hoping to stop The Hammers in their tracks but will have to attempt to do so without star player Luis Suarez.
Suarez was booked last Saturday for a deliberate handball. Liverpool therefore must go to East London without a recognised first team striker. Of course they have the option of drafting young Adam Morgan into the team but it remains to be seen whether Rodgers will take that approach.
With this in mind, the most plausible way Liverpool will line up will be in the infamous 4-6-0 formation that Spain used though-out Euro 2012. The Reds have some experience of this system, most notably in a Europa League game vs. Young Boys. On that occasion Jonjo Shelvey operated in a ‘false no.9’ position. This time around we could see a similar approach adopted as Rodgers has suggested.
The return of Lucas last weekend was a huge boost for Liverpool and they will certainly be elated to see him come through unscathed. The 88 minutes he played seen him make a successful 7/8 tackles which is just like the Lucas of old. Lucas’ presence in the middle of the pitch certainly helped full-backs Johnson and Enrique put in hugely impressive performances which led to their manager describing them as ‘unplayable’ on the day. Both full-backs registered 3 shots apiece.
Last Saturday’s fixture also saw Joe Allen play in a more advanced role and link up regularly with Gerrard. Gerrard who would be the first to admit that his performances have not been up to scratch as of late seemed rejuvenated on Saturday as he put in one of his finest performances to date.
Considering the options available, I feel Liverpool will line-up as follows;
Johnson Skrtel Agger Downing
Lucas Allen Gerrard
Sterling Shelvey Enrique
Another performance of similar quality to that of Saturday with a little more end product certainly wouldn’t leave Liverpool fans complaining!
Written By Niall McGuinnes