Barry Glendenning on Losing as Entertainment

The latest Guardian Fottball Weekly lacks Jimbo, but Jimbo’s foil, Barry (“buzz-kill“) Glendenning had one of his best lines. Sachin Nkrani was talking about how miserable it must be for Sunderland fans to be always losing, and asks Barry if it wouldn’t actually be preferable to be relegated, and spend next season actually winning some games in the Championship:

Nakrani: If you keep losing every week… it must be bloody miserable

Glendenning: It is kind of entertaining, to be honest.

Classic Barry— the football fan who enjoys seeing his own team lose.

Poor Old Iago Aspas

And no matter who you are, you’ll almost always have a poor spell; Barcelona even had one near the end of last season’s title hunt, when they suddenly couldn’t do anything right. They totally lost the plot for a few games. That’s Messi, Suarez, Iniesta, Neymar, et al. Real Madrid recently broke a club record by going 40 games unbeaten, and then won only one of their next five games, losing twice. Iago Aspas put them to the sword. Liverpool’s current bad run is longer than Barcelona or Real Madrid experienced, but they are obviously much better teams. (Paul Tomkins; emphasis in original)

4-4-2

Liverpool’s 4-3-3 hasn’t been working so well in the absence of Sadio Mané— especially against defensive teams. It would be interesting to see them try a 4-4-2. They could play Moreno and Clyne as wingers: Karius, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Lovren, Milner; Moreno, Can, Henderson, Clyne; Sturridge, Origi. Then Lallana, Firmino, and Coutinho could be used as impact subs (LOL).

The Pendulum

Louis van Gaal won four games out of four against Liverpool but there was a wider belief that the Dutchman’s stewardship of the club was a time of flux and that the pendulum of supremacy may be shifting back towards Merseyside.

The past four years have brought four different champions: the last time that happened was 1990-93 and was followed by United’s domination; the previous such sequence was seven from 1967-73 and was followed by Liverpool’s domination. With United seemingly obsessed with celebrity signings and playing staid football, it was possible to discern Liverpool resurgent with their bright young coach and his focus on developing talent. The game at Anfield in October did not really change that perception. (Jonathan Wilson)