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Liverpool Report Card
By: Dr Fishy
DR FISHY has compiled match statistics and a report card for the side that won 2-1 at home to Liverpool. The Doctor was most impressed by the improvement he saw in the side after recent perfomances!
Coyne: He was simply outstanding in goal on his return to the first team squad after his absence on Friday night. He was voted Man of the Match by Gerard Houllier and rightly so. His saves were first class, his punches were clean, his kicks were perfect and his reading of the game was superb. Top performance.
Beharall: He was the surprise inclusion in the starting eleven after only just being given clearance to play by Newcastle hours before kick-off. The loanee played at right back - an unfamiliar position - releasing Butterfield into midfield. So playing out of position against a top side like Liverpool, he can be forgiven for having an average game.
Gallimore: The left back, who has come under much criticism in the past year or so, played a great game at the back. He was part of the defence which kept Liverpool at bay for so long. Gally's a strange player - Devlin of Sheff Utd gives him more of a hard time than Barmby! He didn't seem phased by who he was up against.
Groves: This was more like it! The Captain played an absolute blinder in defence. His first half job was to mark Smicer which he did a more than an adequate job of, and then it was England international Emile Heskey who was to be contained in the second half. He made a crucial tackle on Heskey when he was clean through on goal at 1-0 down - a tackle which had to be seen to be believed.
Broomes: A contradictory player this one. Looked uneasy against Sheff Utd and Crystal Palace in the league, yet when up against Litmanen he looked a class act. He showed great composure when bringing the ball out of defence and looked very comfortable when up against quality international players. Just superb.
Pouton: Although many Town fans would agree that Pouton is one of Grimsby's best players, the game against Liverpool showed he still has a lot to learn. He put himself about well, looked good on the ball but he is still very young. An encouraging performance by the Geordie who played like a wing-back to assist Beharall.
Chapman: On the verge of leaving the club for a trial at Scarborough, the reserve played stepped in to play on the left of midfield, allowing Campbell to play more centrally. He linked up well with the rest of the midfield and caused Liverpool a few problems when running with the ball. Not a bad performance when you consider this was his first start of the season!
Campbell: The Scotsman has already said that Anfield is a lucky ground for him. He played very well in central midfield and saw more of the ball than when on the left. Often looked short of ideas, however he put in one or two troublesome crosses that caused panic at the back for Liverpool.
Butterfield: As Campbell as his midfield partner, the two worked for each other. Danny showed his tendencies to get back and help defensively while Campbell got forward to assist the strikers - a great combination. He made one great goal-line clearance when Coyne looked beaten and was overall very impressive.
Rowan: He put himself about a bit and tried to ruffle up Hyypia and Carragher at the back but without reward. Lost out in the air all the time but the spirit was there to continue battling away and he comes away with great credit. Didn't have a shooting chance all game but had the ball at his feet once or twice to run with.
Jevons: I'm not so sure if Town fans will agree with this, but if you take away the winning goal Jevons didn't really feature much in this match. Like Rowan he battled away but the front pair looked cut off from the rest of the team. Jevons did improve when Boulding came on and, of course, he only struck the best goal of his career to beat the club he supports!
Boulding: His introduction caused havoc at the back for Liverpool. His pace threatened the back line, especially Hyypia who had trouble keeping Boulding under control and could have walked for tugging the former Mansfield striker back when through on goal. Town looked much better going forward when Boulding was on the pitch.
Allen: After 100 minutes of action and no goal, McAllister scores to give Liverpool the lead. Then enter Allen and a 4-3-3 formation. Balls were delivered to the front line much quicker and Allen performed decoys and put pressure on Liverpool who were shaken by his determination.
Best part of Town's game: Basically, everything. The defence looked so solid like you wouldn't believe. There were no signs of the frailties which had seen them ship 16 goals in their past six games. Coyne was truly awesome; the midfield aided the defence in normal time and aided the strikers in extra time. Boulding's introduction to the match changed the way Town got the ball forward. After a while it looked like Town had forgotten who they were playing and made Liverpool look ordinary.
Areas for improvement: No particular area in my view from this game, just try and keep it up.
Entertainment scale: If you're a Liverpool supporter, then it's a rating of 1. Let's face it: you've only gone to the game to see Liverpool score goals, which they didn't manage to achieve! If you're a neutral then it's 5, but you're all Town supporters, so it has to be 10!!! I doubt you'll never see a game like that for many years to come. The Goal, Jevons' last-minute strike was worth every penny we paid to watch the match.
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