Liverpool look to close the season strong
Well, it can only go two ways. Liverpool can follow the spark of Daniel Sturridge, Phillipe Coutinho, and maybe one or two others to finish the season strong. While that probably won't clinch any European spot, it could at least be entertaining and provide some optimism for next season, as well as show who's part of the solution and who is part of the package heading into the garbage bin.
Or. Liverpool could look at being out of every cup, the monstrous gap to any league place that would matter, and decide to just kind of go through it because the schedule says they have to. That won't make anyone feel good.
Obviously, we all just want the former, if for no other reason than it'll be a fuckload easier to watch. We all remember the dredge that was the end of last season in the league, and at least that had the sprinkling of an FA Cup Final run. Who wants to go through that again?
It starts tomorrow. The lineup is pretty simple, having had this big of a break. Sturridge is a doubt with some sort of lingering leg problem, and faces a fitness test. If he goes, one imagines that Coutinho and Suarez would flank him. If he doesn't, Coutinho and Downing would flank Suarez. Though I suppose all four could go with El Pistolero in the hole.
But more likely is the first choice midfield troika of Lucas-Gerrard-Henderson, and as Henderson's constant hassling can disrupt Wigan's passing game. The backline is easy, with Johnson-Carragher-Agger-Enrique.
Wigan are doing that Wigan thing again. Martinez is charming the media through his ebullient personality and attempts to play good football, masking that they're once again in a relegation battle that they'll probably scrape out of. Just. They play a 3-4-3 that they've employed for most of the last two seasons. Di Santo, Beausejour, and Kone are your main threats.
But Wigan only have one win this calendar year, last week against Reading with the Royals down to 10 men. They have two win at home all season. And yet, you worry because Liverpool have sucked out loud at the DW or JJB or whatever it's called (it's hard to keep track). They haven't won there since 2007, and last year's match featured a Charlie Adam missed penalty. And that was about as good as it got.
The reverse fixture saw that Suso-off-for-Henderson switch before halftime, which transformed the match. Haven't really seen Suso since, which is kind of disappointing. But whatever. Wigan will try and play a bit, and Henderson and Lucas will have to break that up. But this is a team begging to be beaten. And maybe just one win to start this closing kick will motivate Liverpool to try and finish on as high of a note as they can, with other results maybe going their way. So let's do that.