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Liverpool Story – March 2013

Hello everyone, welcome back to my Liverpool story. At the end of February we were sitting pretty at the top of the Premier League and had secured a 1-1 draw away at Inter Milan, in the first leg of our Champions League Knockout tie.

The first game of the month was at home to Tottenham, a tricky side with some good players. We started off quite well and went ahead early when Benoit Assou-Ekotto scored a freakish own goal after some good build up play by Sanchez.  The match continued evenly, Tottenham had more possession but we had more attempts on goal. Tottenham drew level, however when Vedran Corluka poked in from 10 yards after a goal mouth scramble. Torres then got injured and I started to grow concerned as we weren’t creating anything. Right at the last though, Silva swung in a high cross to the back post and Sanchez headed in to secure the victory for us, which was probably a bit harsh on Tottenham.

Next up was an FA Cup 6th Round game away at West Brom. They were doing well in the league sitting in 9th place. I expected us to win, and we did thanks to a remarkable 4 goals from Andre-Pierre Gignac. The game was 0-0 at half time and I was disappointed with the performance. Gignac gave us the lead, though 10 minutes into the second half with a good header. He got his second with a powerful effort from the edge of the area, and completed his hat-trick with a cool finish when one-on-one. He wasn’t finished there, though and go his fourth with a placed shot from 12 yards. The scoring was completed when Downing’s header was parried onto the post by Scott Carson, only for the ball to rebound of the West Brom goalkeeper and cross the line. I was pleased because we looked very dangerous in attack, and we could and should have scored more.

The next game was the big one, the return leg against Inter. We had drawn 1-1 in the first leg and, with a sound defensive display I was confident we could progress. What actually happened though, was better than anything I could have expected. Gerrard opened the scoring very early with a cracking shot from 30 yards, that beat Julio Cesar in the Inter goal. Just 7 minutes later Torres doubled the advantage with a fine shot into the top corner. We were thoroughly out playing Inter and we got another on the stroke of half time when Alexis Sanchez poked in at the far post. Jack Wilshere then volleyed in from a corner and Gignac scored our fifth when he placed a shot past Cesar. Inter got a consolation from a corner, but it didn’t mean anything. This was one of the best performances from us since I took charge, and I was very pleased with how we had tormented the tightest defence in Italy.

It was back to the Premier League after that fantastic win, and a trip to Southampton awaited us. It was another great attacking display from us and we were three up inside 20 minutes through Gerrard, Gignac and Torres. Gerrard then got his second with a powerful effort and Torres finished the scoring with a cool finish from 10 yards. It was the third game in a row that we had scored 5 goals and again we looked very good going forward.

The final Liverpool game of the month saw us back at Anfield to face Burnley, who had humiliated us 3-0 in December. The players were up for it, they wanted revenge from the last game. Torres won the match for us in the 11th minute. Cutting in from the left he went past 4 players and placed the ball beyond the keeper in an absolutely incredible goal. It was a worthy winner, but we should have scored more.

That ended a very good month for us, we finished unbeaten and we opened up a huge lead at the top of the table. Although Arsenal have two games in hand the pressure is really on them and I feel 99% sure we will win the league again this season.

The month had finished for Liverpool but England had a World Cup qualifying game away at Austria to play. Aaron Lennon was injured and so was Theo Walcott, so we were missing our two first choice right wingers. Austria packed their midfield and dominated in the early stages and I was very worried when Glen Johnson was sent off in the 25th minute for a horrible challenge that was completely out of character. I had to take Ashley Cole off and play 3 at the back after this, Micah Richards slotted in alongside Terry and Ferdinand. Austria took a deserved lead in the 31st minute when we left a player unmarked to head in at the back post. We hit back straight away when Rooney was scythed down in the box and Hargreaves stuck away the penalty. Austria went back in front when Janko tapped in from a good move. Again we drew level almost immediately, Crouch finishing off a good move. We took the lead for the first time when Hargreaves scored his second with a long range free kick that beat the keeper. Austria grabbed a deserved equaliser though, and we left disappointed, but to be honest, Austria deserved a least a draw. It was our second draw in 4 games and means we have dropped down to second, 1 point behind Switzerland.

That’s all for now folks, we have drawn Benfica in the Champions League Quarter Final, so hopefully we can progress through that and I also hope to wrap up the league title next month.

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Bilal Ahmad
11 years ago

Good Results Laxeyman particularly the Inter Milan game. You look comfortable to win the Premiership and a very exciting World Cup qualifying game!

Lye
Lye
11 years ago

Great month there, with such a comfortable lead, i strongly believe the title will be yours after 3 or 4 games. The total goals you have is frightening, your strikers are really scoring goals for fun. Good win over Inter and i think you can shift your focus to the champions league game after wrapping up the title.
Too bad about the game against Austria but i think you will sure qualify for the world cup.

Jaffa
Jaffa
11 years ago

what tactics r u using?

Laxeyman
11 years ago

Jaffa, I am using a 4-4-2 formation but with 1 MC moved back to DMC. In the Champions League or big Leavue games I use a 4-2-3-1 deep formation.

Jaffa
Jaffa
11 years ago

thanks but who’s ure dmc

Kevin Mayo
11 years ago

Hi Laxeyman

Fifteen goals in three games…that’s astonishing! It looks like you’ve got the title well and truly wrapped up even though there are still a few games to go. I’m thinking you’ll add the Champions League title as well by the time it’s all said and done. Great job!

Johnny Karp
11 years ago

Well done Laxeyman, your boys are unstoppable! Did Mourinho get the sack after that 5-1?

Laxeyman
11 years ago

Jaffa, the DMC I use is Mascherano and the MC is Gerrard. Kevin, thanks for your support, I certainly hope we can win the Champions League!

Laxeyman
11 years ago

Johnny, Mourinho isn’t Inter’s manager anymore it’s Martin Jol! His position is currently ‘Precarious’ but that’s probably because they’re 5th in Serie A.

TheZiggy
11 years ago

A superb month there, with some great wins, the highlight being the destruction of Inter Milan. Very impressive indeed. Funny how Martin Jol is manager at Inter, as in my game he was manager of Ajax, when we beat them in the final.

Shame about the draw in the Austria match. It’s frustrating when a player suddenly does something completely out of character. I was a bit frustrated when Kjær made a rare bad tackle, sliding in from behind on a player, to get a 3rd yellow in the Champions Cup, meaning he missed the final.

You now know what some managers in real life must feel, when that happens. Just think how the French coach must have felt when Zidane headbutted Materazzi in the World Cup. It seems headbutting Materazzi was a sport, with several players flooring him.

Laxeyman
11 years ago

The Ziggy, thanks mate. The Austria game was disappointing and I was a bit shocked that Johnson, who is one of the cleanest players for both Liverpool and England, put in a vicious challenge. It’s really frustrating, and it must be even worse for real life managers. The game against Inter was a brilliant performance from the players, especially as we hadn’t played that well in the 1st leg.

Martin
Martin
11 years ago

A Lot Of Games With You Scoring 5 Goals Has Gotta Be A Good Sign!
That Inter Tie Was Like The Real Madrid One Last Season In Real Life,Except You Drew The First Game And Then Thrashed Them

TheZiggy
11 years ago

It seems to be quite common in cup ties that are over 2 legs for one team to dominate in one match, and then the other way around.

The odd thing I’ve noticed with my team is that often we play well in the first leg, and then find ourselves struggling to hold on in the 2nd. One of the few times that didn’t happen was when Valencia turned up for the 2nd leg totally demoralised, allowing us to beat them, although even then, we weren’t exactly convincing.

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