5 Talking Points from Liverpool vs Cardiff

Cardiff deserves to get relegated

Teams who get promoted to the Premier League can either invest in their roster to stay up for continued success or roll the dice to see if they can survive with minimal investment. Cardiff chose the latter and paying the price for it.

If Cardiff plans to stay in the Premier League by keeping the field dry and giving the ball boys the day off, they might as well get relegated now. Teams have kept the field to suit their style even though as Klopp explained after the game, a dry field makes it more dangerous for player injuries. Not having ball boys to slow the game down further was simply pathetic. Even in high school games, they have bench players act as ball boys so the game is faster. Cardiff’s plan to stop Liverpool by using these dirty tactics is the exact reason why they deserve to get relegated.  I almost expected an army of ball boys coming out of the locker room once they conceded so there is one every 10 feet. When you focus on the negative side of the game, you will have to face the negative consequences.

Meanwhile, Neil Warnock spends almost his entire post game interviews complaining about refereeing and calls on the field. He is happy about the effort of his team but they just cannot win due to all calls going against them. It is one thing to admit that your roster is not the same quality but giving full effort, but stop whining about EVERY call already. Here is to hoping that Liverpool have put them out of their misery and Warnock can spend the off season interviewing ball boys.

Patience is hard to watch but easy to admire

Liverpool has been extremely patient which has been very hard to watch as a fan(especially an impatient one) but it is also very impressive and has to be admired.. Most teams would get frustrated and start deviating from the game plan. The team shows excellent discipline by staying the course and playing our game. We keep our attacking principles and move the ball patiently without forcing mainly due to the team buying into the plan and following the discipline imposed by Klopp. 

Set piece success continues

A few years ago, a set piece was a nightmare phrase. Over the last 2 seasons, Liverpool has made it a strength. We defend them a lot better through a more focused effort along with a superior goalie. We also convert our clearances into deadly counter attacks by using our speed and skill. 

Liverpool is also now a lot more effective in attacking set pieces. We are leading the Premier League in scoring off of set pieces and this time it was due to an adjustment made by the players at half time. Noticing how Cardiff is defending them, the players decided to use it to create an open shot that Gini smashed into the back of the net.

Front Three to its deadly self

The goals might not be there in bunches but it is easy to see the front three playing their best again. They are able to create key opportunities and even if they did not result in goals, their constant movement and pace is enough to create openings for others. They make the opposing defenses work hard and contribute to the success of this team. Salah is back scoring and causing havoc, Mane is playing his best football by not only scoring but going at defenders with his pace, Firmino is a nonstop working machine. 

The front three is a nightmare for any defense to pace. Their pace is deadly, they are great on the ball and play well together. What makes them even more dangerous is the fact that they can swap positions on the field, creating space for each other as well as others and most importantly, they play selfless football. 

Pressure back on City

Liverpool gets another valuable 3 points and is back on top of the league. Every time City feels like, it is their time to put the Reds behind them, we take on the challenge and regain the lead. 

After suffering a huge disappointment in Champions League, City was able to beat Tottenham in the Premier League. Even if it was not a dominant performance by City, it was an important win for them. Instead of being able to relax though, Liverpool puts the pressure right back on them by winning a tough away game.

Watching United get demolished by Everton does not give us a lot of hope. Perhaps the way they lost does though. United will need to respond as they were emberassed and Ole set this game against City an opportunity to make it right. I expect the attitude to be there but the bigger question will be about quality. Does United have the quality to keep up with City and get a result that will help Liverpool?