Teams – LFC v City: Carra starts at right-back

Liverpool boss Rafe Benitez is still some way from being able to pick his strongest side, but at least today the starting eleven is made of players who play for the first-team on a regular basis.

Glen Johnson isn’t fit, so Jamie Carragher moves across to right-back. But with both Daniel Agger and Martin Skrtel fit that doesn’t mean Liverpool are short in the centre of defence. Emilian Insua completes the back-four.

Alberto Aquilani still isn’t considered ready for a start, so Lucas joins Mascherano in the centre of midfield.

David Ngog plays in the Torres role, Fernando still missing as he recovers from that hernia injury. He’ll be getting his support from Dirk Kuyt and Steven Gerrard, and also Ryan Babel.

With Rafa Benitez reportedly needing to lose four players in January, reportedly with an eye on the wage bill, these are the times for the players who get their chances to make sure they take them.

On the bench are some of those returning from injury, with Aquilani joined by Albert Riera, Yossi Benayoun and Fabio Aurelio. Nabil El Zhar is also on the bench, back from a long-term injury.

Mark Hughes doesn’t need to worry about lowering his wage bill, and his side features one-time Liverpool target Gareth Barry, who was reportedly paid far more than Liverpool would have paid him had his deal gone through to play for the Reds. It also features former Red Craig Bellamy.

Kick-off is at 12.45pm.

Liverpool: 25 Reina, 23 Carragher, 22 Insua, 37 Skrtel, 5 Agger, 20 Mascherano, 21 Lucas, 18 Kuyt, 8 Gerrard, 19 Babel, 24 Ngog
Subs: 1 Cavalieri, 12 Aurelio, 16 Kyrgiakos, 4 Aquilani, 11 Riera, 15 Benayoun, 31 El Zhar

Manchester City: 1 Given, 3 Bridge, 5 Zabaleta, 19 Lescott, 28 Toure, 7 Ireland, 8 Wright-Phillips, 18 Barry, 34 De Jong, 25 Adebayor, 39 Bellamy
Subs: 12 Taylor, 4 Onuoha, 33 Kompany, 6 Johnson, 40 Weiss, 14 Santa Cruz, 32 Tevez

Referee: Phil Dowd

6 thoughts on “Teams – LFC v City: Carra starts at right-back”

  1. Dear Mr Benitez,

    it’s really very simple. When we score to go up one ahead, we then hold onto possession of the ball. The other team can’t score without the ball. We do NOT punt the ball as far up the park as possible each time we get it and we do not drop back to the 25 yard mark, giving up all territory in the middle of the park. This is called “inviting the opposition to attack relentlessly until they score”,


  2. Saw the game… real bite…having said that we scored two…desperately need strikers…would love to see aquilani play at some stage this season…no real creativity in midfield…first adebayor goal was like…hmm can’t anyone see the big geezer in the centre? thought ireland was offside for his…no silver lining cos manure and chelski won….16 games to go and we need to start playing…

  3. As a LFC fan of 65 years and a fan of the Manager for the past 5 years; I am now finding myself saying “Into the 6th year, over 70 players bought 200 Mil spent and we have no depth in the squad, particularly for strikers and just too many poor players”, I rate Lucas of one of the poorest wingbacks LFC have ever played with.
    Regretably it is time for the Manager to stand down, if he cannot produce a better squad than this after 5 years.
    I would like someone like Hidink in charge, but Dagliesh would be OK in the short term.

  4. Chris sorry I dont Agree, If you think that changing the man is te answer, then change him but make sure you produce the cash because times have changed in the last two years, and money is the mos important thing in football today more then ever, 200 mil in five years Thats a joke MAN CITY ALMOST SPENT THAT IN TWO WEEKS AND CHALSEA 350 MIL IN THE LAST 5 YEARS. SORRY MATE ITS NOT ANYMORE LIKE THE OLD DAYS UNFORTUNATLY. He had to sell 45 players to produce 200 mil, were as chalsea jus buy who they want and then sell accordingly.

  5. Lucas , Mascherano are both defensive type midfielders. Clearly we need a creative player in midfield – Is Aquilani ever going to play ?
    £20 million and sat on the bench – It can’t be doing much for his confidence either.

    I do wonder about Benitez’s tactics sometimes ….

  6. 2-2 at home with 15 mins to go, everyone inside Anfield wanted an attacking player to come on and play for the win. But alas no, even with Reira and Aquilani sat on the bench itching to get on, Rafa decides that Aurelio is the better option. Its just ridiculous. A poor, poor decision yet again.

    Its just unbelivable. But hey lets get to the real reason they didnt get on. Europe. How much more evidence is needed to prove that the Premier league plays second fiddle to the Champions league in our managers head.

    If Aquilani aint fit enough to play then he shoudnt be on the bench.

    Outrageous management again.

    I bet Aquilani plays in Europe this week. We are going to struggle for 4th this season and that spells disaster.

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