Despite all the ire being directed towards Jordan Henderson recently, I feel much more focus should be on another summer signing, Charlie Adam. Unlike Henderson who is still learning the game, Adam is 25 and is heading towards the peak of his career, and we should expect to be seeing some top notch performances, like we have from Stewart Downing and Jose Enrique.
To be fair, it takes every player time to settle in and we will see better performances from Adam in the coming months, but it would be safe to say that his displays have been somewhat indifferent in the first few matches.
His match against Stoke kind of sums up his performances for Liverpool so far this season. During the match he made a total of 67 passes, with 51 going to team mates at a pass completion percentage of 76%. This is not bad considering he does also take set pieces, but it isn’t great either considering he is supposed to be the deep-lying playmaker in the side.
For sure, he has made some fantastic long range diagonal balls already this season, but like his time at Blackpool, he has the tendency for trying to make too many “Hollywood” style passes, giving away possession in the process and stopping forward momentum.
Of course, you wouldn’t want Adam to play too conservatively as it is his job to open up defences with defence splitting balls, but I feel he could be a lot more selective to know when to hit raking cross field balls and when to play it short. He is certainly still learning at 25 but it is crucial for Liverpool’s creative play this season that he gets it right more often than that.
So far this campaign it has been evident that he sometimes slows down play too much, taking too much time on the ball and then losing possession to the opposition in the process. I must make an interest known that I don’t rate Adam as highly as either Meireles or Aquilani who left the club, but I still feel the Scot has it within him to play at bit better.
One element of his game which can’t be criticised is his set piece delivery. Although he sometimes over hits the ball, he always whips the ball in with pace from either corners or free kicks and causes opposition defence no end of problems. I feel the Reds do need to capitalise on more deliveries than they have done already this season.
So in conclusion, there are elements of Adam’s game I like, he can no doubt pass a ball from either open play or from set pieces, but I think he needs to be a lot more consistent if he wants to have a long career at the club. Do you think he is the man most vulnerable by the return of Gerrard, or do you think Henderson will give way and the Reds revert to a 4-2-3-1?
Article is courtesy of David Tully at Live4Liverpool