Team to play Newcastle

Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez has made five changes to the team to play Newcastle as St James’ Park today.

In goal for his Liverpool debut is Scott Carson, with Jerzy Dudek dropped to the bench.

Baros sees his complaints earlier in the week bear fruit as he starts the game.

Full team

Carson, Finnan, Riise, Carragher, Hyypia, Pellegrino, Biscan, Gerrard, Smicer,
Garcia, Baros.
Subs – Dudek, Warnock, Welsh, Nunez, Le Tallec:

Continue reading Team to play Newcastle

Liverpool reserves lose to Man U reserves.

Liverpool’s reserve team were beaten 1-0 by their counterparts from
Manchester United last night. Josemi was withdrawn with an injury,
although it’s yet to be announced how serious the injury is. Paul
Harrison made a return after his spell on loan to Leeds.

Full report available here.

Liverpool Reserves 0 Manchester United Reserves 1 (Miller, 57)

Liverpool Reserves: Harrison, Josemi (O’Donnell 44), Raven, J Smith
(Wilkie 80), Whitbread, Mannix, Otsemobor, Welsh, Le Tallec, Potter,
Partridge. Subs not used: Luzi, Guthrie, Hammill.

Manchester United Reserves: Ricardo, Picken, Eckersley, Pique, Spector, Miller, Heath, Jones, Bellion (Timm 89), Rossi, Martin.

Continue reading Liverpool reserves lose to Man U reserves.

More tampering with English Football

News has just reached us that the FA have decided to tamper yet again with English Football.

In another vain attempt at trying to get anything like success for the
England national team, they’ve now decided to end the 2006 season a
week earlier than planned, and to mess around with the need for replays
in the FA Cup 5th and 6th rounds.

Of course this season the question would never have arisen for
Liverpool FC  – Liverpool aren’t in the FA Cup 5th or 6th rounds.
Next season it’s not yet possible to say whether it will apply to
Liverpool FC – as they may yet still not qualify for Europe next season.

The 2006 FA Cup final was due to be played at the new Wembley stadium
on May 20th. Now, due to the high demands put on players in the modern
game, the final will be played a week earlier, on May 13th. This will
allow the England players to fit in some extra promotional work filming
adverts before the finals. The premiership will finish a week earlier
in turn.

For the fith and sixth rounds of the FA Cup, the FA felt it necessary
to confuse everyone. For the FIFTH round, If the tie features a team
that is playing in the Uefa Cup, then that tie will not have a replay
should it be level after 90 minutes. For the SIXTH round, if one of the
teams in a tie is playing in the Uefa Cup OR the Champions League, then
that tie also will not have a replay if it is level at the end of 90

It’s going to cause trouble.

And it’s completely unneccessary.

Coming soon: Ebay sponsor the FA Cup and auction off a place in the semi-final for the highest bidder…

Continue reading More tampering with English Football

Shay Given: We can beat Liverpool

Shay Given is looking forward to the visit to St James’ Park by Liverpool at the weekend.

Whereas Liverpool lost out to Chelsea in the Carling Cup Final,
Newcastle are still buoyed by the win over Chelsea in the FA Cup.

Given said, "We’ve got a lot of big games coming up and we’ve got to
give the crowd something to shout about. It’s up to the players to do
that and I feel we are getting better every week. They’re getting
behind the team, especially against Chelsea. It was probably the best
atmosphere all season."

Continue reading Shay Given: We can beat Liverpool

Almunia: Mourinho is “arrogant”

According to a report on the BBC today,  Chelsea manager Jose
Mourinho has been branded as "arrogant" by Arsenal goalkeeper Manuel
Almunia. Almunia was referring to the Chelsea manager’s gesture during
the Carling Cup victory over Liverpool.

Mounrhino was clearly seen with a finger to his lips and certainly
seemed to be aiming this at the Liverpool fans. This was immediately
after the Chelsea equalizer. Mourinho then said it was actually aimed
at the press.  Quite why he needed to face the Liverpool fans
whilst making the gesture to the press, and when the score was still only 1-1, is something beyond us here at

So what did Almunia actually say? Well, he was speaking to the Catalan
newspaper El Mundo Deportivo, and said, "He acted arrogantly. It is
clear that Mourinho believes he is superior to the rest and that his
success has gone to his head."

Almunia thinks Chelsea will be knocked out of the Champions League next
week against Barcelona. He said,  "They (Barcelona) are going to
have problems in the return against Chelsea but I have confidence in
them as they have done well this season."

One thing Liverpool fans have always disliked is arrogance. It seems
Manchester United have got themselves a new rival in that sense.

Continue reading Almunia: Mourinho is “arrogant”

Hero Mellor out for the season

Liverpool hero Neil Mellor has become the latest Liverpool player to be
ruled out for the remainder of the season due to injury. He is due to
undergo surgery today. He is suffering from  tendinitis in both

Mellor, 22, has scored five goals in 16 games this season – perhaps most memorably at home to Arsenal and Olympiacos.

His goal against Arsenal was a superb effort, even more so with it
being practically the last kick of the match and also the winner.

And his goal – as substitute – against Olympiacos in the Champions
League set the game up for Gerrard’s last minute tie-winning goal to
see Liverpool into the last 16.

He joins Djibril Cisse (broken leg), Chris Kirkland (back injury), Xabi
Alonso (broken ankle) and Florent Sinama-Pongolle (knee injury) on the
list of serious casualties at Anfield.

* Good luck Neil from all of us at – let’s hope you’re back soon – we could have done with you at Cardiff!

Continue reading Hero Mellor out for the season

Tsunami benefit match

We had an email enquiry today regarding the benefit match to be played
at Anfield for victims of the Tsunami. We had posted details of this
match in our weblog, but it was tucked away in the archive from
February the 18th, and so perhaps it’s a good idea to bring it back to
everyone’s attention again. The actual article is taken from the
website of the Liverpool Echo.

Continue reading Tsunami benefit match

Finnan supports Gerrard – what about the fans?

Robbie Fowler was able to play game in game out looking
uninterested towards the end of his Anfield career, yet was still
popular to the fans that populate the internet and radio phone-ins.

Michael Owen was classed as past it and uninterested if he went as long
as half a game without a goal, and was criticised for enjoying
representing his country.

Now it seems that Steven Gerrard can do nothing right. The fans that
wanted to have his babies a few weeks back after his winner in the
Champions League kept Liverpool in the competition are now telling him
to go and join Chelsea. Why?

Too many Liverpool fans have become extremely fickle. Most of the
players that turn out for Liverpool now play to the best of their
abilities. Most of the time. If they have games where they don’t play
well, it’s not through want of trying.

If Steven Gerrard wanted to stay at Anfield for the sake of the fans –
which he was one himself once – then that desire is being eroded every
time he doesn’t put in a world-class performance and win the game

There’s a lot of things that aren’t quite right at Anfield at the
moment. This article is not going to go into all of those right now.
The only thing that doesn’t seem to be mentioned nowadays is that
Liverpool fans are turning into the "wrong sort" of fans.

Steve Finnan declared his support of his club captain, in relation to
the own goal. The own goal that many Liverpool fans would have you
believe was done on purpose. Finnan said: "It can happen
to anyone. He’ll bounce back. He is a quality player. I’m sure it won’t affect him."

He added: "He was trying to clear the ball and it could have gone anywhere but it has just gone in off the post."

"There is no-one to blame out there. It is just a bit frustrating that after a good first half we probably didn’t play as well in the second half. And with the set-pieces maybe we could have done better."

Liverpool got through to a final, and lost against a team that was
assembled at a cost that nobody could have imagined coming into
football a couple of years ago during the ITV Digital era. Liverpool
held Chelsea at bay for 80 minutes, but in the end once the own-goal
went in the tired legs were too obvious.

If you like Liverpool, start getting behind them, start supporting your
captain – don’t give him and excuse to leave. And take that chip off
your shoulder.

Continue reading Finnan supports Gerrard – what about the fans?