Four Reasons not to worry about Liverpool’s 15 conceded goals in 5 games

3) The opposition.

Looking at the two teams yesterday as an example, you’d be forgiven for thinking that we should have steamrollered the opposition. One major difference though was that Valerenga are halfway through their domestic season right now and are clearly much fitter and sharper than us as a result. This was obvious in a couple of areas; the lack of a quick pressing game which we usually employ and also the tendency to hesitate on the ball by most of our lot which is only corrected by match practice. It’s no surprise that Kenny has chosen to play our most testing friendly opposition (Valencia) before our first domestic game of the season, and it’ll be a very different team that runs out at Anfield on Saturday with a much stronger line-up.

4) Friendly form means very little to the actual season.

It’s as simple as that. There’ll be a few ‘dedicated’ fans who can remember friendly results at the end of a season (God love ‘em!) but for the most part, those results are completely forgotten soon after the season starts and with good reason. Bolton have won 5 pre-season games in a row now; does anybody think they’ll go through the season in that sort of form…? So if winning form doesn’t really matter once the proper matches start, why should any other form?

Of course I’d have liked a lovely run of form in the friendly games, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t, but I’m not particularly bothered as long as we start well against Sunderland. I’m as annoyed as anyone about conceding soft goals against unglamorous opposition but we haven’t lost any points or gone out of a cup competition because of it. There were some positives last night too; Downing in particular looked very classy and a fit Agger for me is one of the top centre backs in the world, we’re a much more dangerous team with him striding forward from the back. One game at a time and the next one is Valencia with a much stronger starting XI.

This will probably be the team against Sunderland (barring a new left back): Reina, Johnson, Agger, Carra, Kelly, Downing, Adam, Meireles, Kuyt, Carroll, Suarez. Remember the makeshift teams Kenny was putting out last season and still winning games and then look at the one we can put out now, including, for the first time in ages, an actual left winger. If you’re still not optimistic about the upcoming campaign then I suggest you Google ‘buy Prozac’ and get your credit card out.