Liverpool were held to a 0-0 draw on Saturday at home against Stoke in a highly frustrating game for the Reds.
It was expected before the game that Stoke would come and be the usual physical self and thus Dalglish opted not to take any chances and named three centre-backs in the starting lineup: Coates, Skrtel and Carragher. I can not blame Dalglish too much for this as he has played with three at the back before and against Stoke you need as many tall and physical players as you can.
Where I believe Dalglish got in wrong yesterday was when he could see that Stoke were only playing with Peter Crouch upfront, why did we continue to stick with three at the back marking one player? At half-time, I believe Dalglish should have pulled Carragher off and bought on an attacking option.
We failed to carve out too many clear chances against Stoke as they literary played with every one of their players behind the ball; as they say, “Stoke came and parked the bus infront of the Liverpool goal!”
It was not easy breaking Stoke down and what frustrated me even more was that we do not seem to have that Benayoun or Meireles type player who can break down the opposition in such situations. Gerrard was playing too deep for my liking and you could see he was getting tired in the second half which did not help our cause.
Dalglish should have started the game with Andy Carroll. I am not a huge fan of Carroll but in a game against Stoke, it only makes sense to start with the big striker simply due to his physical size. When he cam on in the second half, you could see that he was causing the Stoke defenders a couple of problems.
After the game Dalglish said, “They came here to go away with a point and they got a point. The responsibility was on us to be more imaginative to break them down, but we didn’t manage to do that.
“The couple of opportunities we did have we never took, and in a game like that you’ve got to take your opportunities.
“We looked pretty solid at the back and I think they had one shot in the first half and not much more after that, but as I said it was our responsibility to be able to break them down.
“There was nothing wrong with the players’ effort or determination, but on the day we just weren’t good enough to break them down.”