LIVERPOOL 2-2 West Ham
Liverpool claim a point from their latest Premier League fixture, against London side West Ham.
Jürgen Klopp has been faced with some difficult decisions over squad selection lately when key players picked up injuries. We’ve played some games without Adam Lallana, Joel Matip, Emre Can, Daniel Sturridge, Wijnaldum and Coutinho. Considering that we’d made our way to the top of the league when all players were fully fit, it seems to have played a part in our position slipping and our rivals overtaking us as the injury list started gathering numbers.
The start of the game was important for the home side. Liverpool would begin well and create offensive opportunities which eventually led to a goal within the first 5 minutes. Sadio Mané would make a run down the wing, cross over to Adam Lallana and an accurate finish was made to give Liverpool the lead.
Liverpool’s lead would last just 22 minutes though as eventually a vital free kick was awarded to West Ham by referee Mark Clattenburg. The free kick would be taken and scored by Dimitri Payet and would leave Liverpool fans wondering if Karius could have done more to save us from conceding. It certainly seemed like the goal could have been avoided.
After West Ham got their equalizer, the game seemed to start moving into their hands and they gathered some confidence as they began believing that they could possibly take away some points from Anfield. This season, only Manchester United had managed to stop Liverpool claiming a home victory when they came and earned a goalless draw.
The first half would still see one more goal. Around the 39th minute, Liverpool had been busy pushing forward into our opponents half and West Ham took the ball, then played it long to Antonio. At the back for Liverpool in this moment was only Joel Matip and Loris Karius. Both would make mistakes that led to West Ham’s 2nd goal.
There wasn’t any amazing skill from Antonio, but Matip seemed to be frozen on the spot at a time when that’s the last thing we needed to happen because of such a shortage of defensive players in that area at that moment. He just wasn’t doing what was needed as most of our team were stuck down the other end of the pitch. Antonio would make his way past Matip with the ball all too easily and then Karius rushed off his goal line, only giving Antonio an opportunity to slide the ball underneath him and claim his goal.
The first half had seen three goals now, but was pretty much over.
Surprisingly only one more goal was to come in the second half. Liverpool would have at least 45 minutes to equalise and perhaps even get a winning goal. Only the equalizer would come in the next half though.
It was early into the 2nd half (48th minute of the game) when Mané provided Origi with the ball that he would take and put past West Ham’s goalkeeper from close range. Thank you Mané and Origi for that. Losing to West Ham may just have been the most embarrassing moment of the entire season. I’m still not entirely happy that we couldn’t claim another goal in the rest of the half to go on to win at our own stadium, but at least we didn’t concede any more and could claim a single point from the game.
Karius OR Mignolet?
The latest fixtures we’ve seen have had Karius conceding 4 goals against Bournemouth and 2 goals against West Ham. We’re playing against sides which have been in the relegation zone and coming with nothing or a single point in games that really should have been 3 points for Liverpool. When you look at the fixture list before it’s even kicked off, you can accurately predict which teams you’ll likely be winning against and Liverpool fans will surely have thought we’d win these two before the unpleasant surprises which proved us wrong. Once you’re in the game, there’s a lot of factors that determine the winner but conceding as few goals as possible is one of them. Your goalkeeper needs to be consistent with saving your team from letting goals in.
As far as clean sheets go, Mignolet is one of the best Premier League goalkeepers and has an outstanding record of clean sheets. Karius still has yet to prove that he can keep up with these high standards set by Mignolet. What we have seen though, is multiple to many games where Liverpool have conceded, no matter what the result is. Draws, defeats and victories have all seen Karius let a goal into his net.
My brain is telling me that I need to give the new guy (Karius) a chance and trust in Klopp, who picked him out personally and brought him to the club (and not for free, either). However, my heart is telling me that I want to see the good old keeper who has kept us safe for several seasons before Karius came along and just stole away the number 1 choice goalkeeper position. What will you listen to? Your brain or your heart? That’s up to you to decide but I think I need my heart to have what it wants… Mignolet back in goal, for most or all fixtures. Safety and experience and excellent clean sheets records, please. We know Mignolet can provide that.
Man of The Match
Sadio Mané was really involved in the whole game. A part of everything we were doing, sometimes clearing our opponents attacks and doing a bit of defensive duties and sometimes making his way up towards West Ham’s defenders and goalkeeper to put pressure on them. He would assist both goals for Lallana and Origi so don’t think that just because we didn’t see his name on the score sheet, he wasn’t the best player in the game — without him, we may not even have had our two goals at all. He was an absolute pleasure to watch, I’m glad to have him around at a time when some of our key players aren’t there because of injury. Please don’t get added to that list, Mané. You’re vital to everything we’re doing right now.
Liverpool travel to Middlesbrough for more Premier League action soon.
Walk on with hope in your hearts, Anfield Family. You’ll Never Walk Alone.
[written by] Stuart Drewery.
I’m an Englishman (born and raised in Liverpool in the 80s). My whole family including my parents and grandparents were Liverpool fans so I was born into being a red.
I’ve seen Liverpool win the league (more than 25 years ago) and I’ve been 100% loyal and committed while supporting the Reds through all the good times AND the bad times since the 80s.