The weekend started and ended with a few points worth noting but not brought to light by mainstream media, hence this rant.
Four things struck me about Liverpool`s win at Chelsea of which the fourth item was simply an underlining of something that is already obvious. Starting at the beginning, always a good place, was the way under-fire Simon Mignolet did himself no favours with his attempts to deal with one particular back pass, with his feet. Claudio Bravo he is not and more like Juliet Bravo ( look it up ) he took more touches than the average midfielder before managing to clear.
Ominously the camera panned to Jurgen Klopp who, in that silent-movie mannerism only he can carry off indicated `kick it first time out of the ground` or whatever the German is for `Row Z`.
I only dipped in and out of the game, couldn`t take it in too long a burst but was fortunate enough to catch Dejan Lovren`s opener and praise the heavens at last a footballer who knows positional sense. Please observe how many Premier League footballers when their team attacks down one flank make support runs IN LINE WITH THE FAR POST and NOT wide of that same post. And note how many goal scoring chances are lost. But then PLEASE NOTE how Lovren, when Liverpool attacked down the left, pulled away at the back post with the instinct of a striker and after taking what I like to call the `scenic route` finished with a certain amount of aplomb.
AND HE`S A CENTRE HALF
Another notable for me was the way Jordan Henderson, five minutes after ballooning one over the bar and leaving me thinking `he lacks technique` he stroked a beauty into the top corner for Liverpool`s second, I believe his first goal for Liverpool in 20 games. NOT his first shot but his first goal and therein lies the tale.
By hitting that spectacular goal Henderson proved he can do it but has he convinced himself? The midfielder`s problem is between his ears. He lacks the confidence to try which undermines his technique when he does. Until he learns to shrug off that fear of failure he will remain an average midfielder who doesn`t score enough goals.
And the fourth thing to emerge from Friday night, that`s easy? Jurgen Klopp continues to prove he is the best thing about Liverpool. Give him the players and he will put silverware in the trophy cabinet. Remember, last season Liverpool reached two cup finals.
POST IT note
Ordinarily this would be an open letter to……But a think a post it note to Glenn Hoddle and Robbie Savage gets the message home.
You both criticised David de Gea for his attempt to keep out Watford`s first goal on Sunday. Well much as I respect you, Glenn for your knowledge as just about the best pundit on telly and Robbie, well, Robbie you continue to do what you do best, talking guff.
A little insight fellahs into the specialist art of goalkeeping which I know isnt high in your skill set list.
As the cross came in from Janmaat Etienne Capoue steered the ball back in the direction from whence it came, inside the near post. And because de Gea was moving from left to right he had no time, and thus no chance, to do anything but throw his foot at the ball. Because, you see chaps, his leg was closer to the ball than his arm and that is what a good goalkeeper does. He uses the nearest part of his body `CUZ IT SAVES TIME`.
Please store that in your memory banks Glenn, and Robbie, store that up in your kb of storage.
by Brian Beard
Longest serving Sky Sports football reporter, 1,159 games, but who`s counting?