Wednesday eveningâ€™s rearranged trip to Anfield gives us an early opportunity to get the disappointment of last weekendâ€™s result against Hull City out of our system. Boaz Myhillâ€™s display of blocks, parries and reflex saves will live long in the memory, as will as the tight ball of frustration that mustâ€™ve built up in the solar plexus of every Spurs fan as the clocks on the Jumbotrons flickered forward towards ninety minutes.
Still, it wasnâ€™t all black, none of the teams around us took advantage of our failure to notch and one of those was Liverpool of course. Since the snow postponement of Janury 10th the Scousers have turned a mini revival into a major crisis by getting knocked out of the Cup by Reading and suffering non-trivial injuries to Gerrard, Torres and Benayoun. At the weekend Benitez packed his team with defenders and picked up a point at Stoke City thus exhibiting a bit of character if nothing else. Thereâ€™s no doubt that Liverpool fans will expect more of this and if weâ€™re going to get a result from this game weâ€™re going to have to sweat for it. Battling performances at Blackburn and Fulham recently indicate that we are well capable of it, this assumes though we donâ€™t suffer from the normal BigFour-itis that tends to affect us when we visit one of the Moneybags League clubs. Glenn Johnson is still crocked, Maxi Rodriguez maybe be given his debut.
For us Lennon will probably miss out again, plus in defence Woodgate, King and Assou-Ekotto are absent. Bassong and Dawson have performed admirably during our amazing run of clean sheets and, without hopefully speaking too soon, Bale appears to have come of age so we have adequate replacements at the back. Modric played nominally on the right on Saturday though in fact he spent most of his time in what was an already overcrowded central midfield. Heâ€™s obviously been told that he can wander around wherever he feels like; it does narrow the play though, especially with Lennon missing. Huddlestone had a stinker on Saturday but is obviously one of Harryâ€™s favourites so is more than likely to get another go. Up front thereâ€™ll be consternation if Keane gets the nod over Crouch.
Weâ€™ve a dismal record at Anfield as every schoolboy knows but here is a good opportunity to buck the trend. Assuming that we donâ€™t get HowardWebbed and that the defence plays with its now familiar composure and robustness, we should be able to create enough chances to make sure we come away with a point at the very least and to be honest, anything else would be hugely disappointing.
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