Liverpool 2-2 Aston Villa – Complacency Costs Reds

Picture courtesy of liverpoolfc.com

By Jonathan Carroll

Following a fantastic away win at Stoke City where Liverpool were previously winless in the Premier league, Brendan Rodgers readied his team for the visit of Aston Villa as well as John Henry from Boston. There was a certain complacency with the tactics used on Saturday as Rodgers looked to utilize Steven Gerrard as a deep lying midfielder as Villa stunned Anfield by racing into a two goal lead in the first half due to the lack of presence in the middle for the home side.

Both goals could be traced to individual mistakes, Kolo Toure failed to stop Gabriel Agbonlahor from getting his cross in for the first goal and Steven Gerrard failed to track the run of Andreas Weimann. Christian Benteke stooped to nod home a second after Simon Mignolet flapped at a cross that Glen Johnson seemed to have covered. Liverpool have made Anfield a fortress of late and the start to Saturdays game was perplexing to say the least.

Picture courtesy of liverpoolfc.com

Liverpools response was swift. Luis Suarez found Jordan Henderson at the top of the box and his sublime flick was neatly finished by Daniel Sturridge to make it 1-2. Game on as Anfield erupted.

Picture courtesy of liverpoolfc.com

Brendan Rodgers brought Lucas Leiva on to start the second half instead of Philippe Coutinho and it worked wonders as the reds now had a hold of midfield. Gerrard in particular was very poor in the first half but he went some way to redeeming himself as he converted from the penalty spot after Luis Suarez has been upended by Brad Guzan in the Villa goal.

Picture courtesy of liverpoolfc.com

Liverpool looked to push on as Suarez went close from a free kick thirty yards out and Raheem Sterling also threatened. Lucas Leiva was substituted after taking a knock on his knee, something that will cause much worry around Anfield as quality defensive kids are rare these days at the club. With John Henry in attendance, perhaps the moves in the transfer marker will gain some momentum this week. Liverpool should strengthen given their positive position halfway through the season. The champions league is an attainable goal at this point in time. The only question is, why do the club look hesitant to strengthen when the need to is obvious?

Picture courtesy of liverpoolfc.com

LIVERPOOL

  • 22 Mignolet
  • 02 Johnson
  • 20 Cissokho
  • 08 Gerrard
  • 37 Skrtel
  • 04 Kolo Touré
  • 31 Sterling Booked
  • 14 Henderson
  • 07 Suárez
  • 15 Sturridge
  • 10 Coutinho (Lucas – 45′ )

Substitutes

  • 01 Jones
  • 06 Luis Alberto
  • 09 Iago Aspas
  • 12 Moses
  • 21 Lucas (Allen – 66′ )
  • 24 Allen
  • 34 Kelly

ASTON VILLA

  • 01 Guzan
  • 07 Bacuna Booked
  • 23 Bertrand Booked (Luna – 81′ )
  • 15 Westwood
  • 04 Vlaar
  • 06 Clark Booked
  • 08 El Ahmadi Booked (Sylla – 62′ )
  • 16 Delph
  • 20 Benteke
  • 10 Weimann
  • 11 Agbonlahor (Holt – 49′ )

Substitutes

  • 09 Helenius
  • 12 Albrighton
  • 13 Steer
  • 14 Luna
  • 18 Sylla
  • 22 Gardner
  • 29 Holt

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