Back Seat Management

Do Hodgson’s job for him – pick YOUR Liverpool XI

Daring? Yes. Bonkers? Perhaps.

Liverpool FC

They say that fortune favours the brave – which is basically a more womanly way of declaring “he who dares wins” – so The Spoiler is taking a big throw of the dice with a new look Liverpool.

Three at the back, Glen Johnson given the Gareth Bale treatment with a chance to play in the midfield, and Cole and Gerrard taking it in turns to float around like modern day McManamans. Mascherano is very much missed as the defensive terrier in the middle, leaving Meireles and Lucas to hoover things up in front Carragher and his mates.

Hodgson, feel free to use.

Now do yours in the comments section. Or just rip into this one.

36 responses so far
  • Sowellred // January 6, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    Like to see that to be honest.

  • Dassi // January 6, 2011 at 3:37 pm

    this is exactly how the team should be played. Johnson in the Gareth Bale “role” and just 3 center backs :)

  • Paul // January 6, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    I would stick 442, but drop the entire back 4 that is playing at the minute!!

    Kelly, Agger, Wilson, Aurelio
    Maxi, Gerrard, Shelvey, Cole
    Babel, Torres

    Everyone else needs to be sold & replaced with half decent talent!! (including Babel, but until then, he can play instead of useless Ngog)

  • Ryan, S.Wales // January 6, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    Surprisingly looks decent enough.. It could do with the addition of a left wing back.. Finding a good left wing back though would be hard to come by as there is a definate lack of quality in the world at left full backs. Only other addition I’d make would be to try and sign Luis Suarez and put Cole on the bench, Gerrard playing a little more central but with still a free role to push forward and link up with the 2 strikers of Torres and Suarez.. Would be a lot more potent than the curret set up.

  • Shane // January 6, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    Bring back 3-5-2?

    ——————— Reina ———————
    ——— Kelly – Carragher – Agger ———
    Johnson ——– Meireles ——– Aurelio
    ——— Gerrard ————- Cole ———
    ——————– Torres ——————–

    That being said, a lot of players have had enough chances at this stage, plus Carragher would be better off in a coaching role at this stage. So, if I really was to change things up I’d go with this crop for the rest of the season:

    ————– Reina ————-
    Kelly – Ayala – Agger – Wilson
    ————- Coady ————–
    —- Gerrard —– Meireles —-
    – Pacheco — Torres — Suso –

  • Rick // January 6, 2011 at 3:42 pm

    Liverpool (4-4-1 -1): Brad Jones Gk; Martin Kelly Rb; Konchesky Lb; Meireles Dm; Agger Cb; Mertesaker ( Carra) Cb; Nathan Ecclestone Rw; Gerrard (C); Dirk Kuyt (Cf) ; Joe Cole (behind the striker) ; Jovanovic (Lw)

    Subs: Gulacsi; Irwin ; Flanno Flanagan; Pacheco; Babel; Skrtel; Lucas


    Players with pace, passion & creativity IN


  • Ray McD // January 6, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    This should be the formation at home on occasion definitely. Unfortunately players like Johnson, Walcott, Bale, Lennon, Ashley Young etc would have a field day playing against it.

    This should only be played against teams with no pace on the wide flanks.

  • Kirsty // January 6, 2011 at 3:46 pm

    Kelly —– Agger —- Skrtel —– Aurelio

    Kuyt ——- Meireles —– Maxi

    Cole ——- Gerard

  • Ray McD // January 6, 2011 at 3:46 pm

    Away from Home we need to play


    Johnson Carra Agger Aurelio

    Kuyt Lucas Gerrard Maxi




    Jones, Kelly, Skrtel, Mereiles, Babel, Jovanovic, Ngog

  • liverpool believer // January 6, 2011 at 3:46 pm

    reina/david james
    johnson/carracher (right back)
    shawcross/mertessacker (center)
    skertel or kyriargos (center)
    insua or konchensky (left back)
    gerrad or kurt (right wing)
    elia or lucus (midfield)
    aquilani or mireles (midfield)
    babel or maxi (left wing)
    Torres or cole (low forward)
    ngog or owen (front forward)

  • Ian // January 6, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    Yes – This would be the ideal choice!! However Carra out injured young Kelly should be in, Your supposed to play to your strengths, yet look at the formation v Wolves – We had a centre forward on the left wing Kuyt (where he has never played in his career) then possible are player of the season so far in Meireles on the right wing !! Talk about round pegs in square holes. As a season ticket holder I have been crying out for Johnson to be moved further forward as he is so inept defending – Either in this option or as a 442 – Play him in front ok a right back

  • Sonny // January 6, 2011 at 3:48 pm

    I agree with three at the back, when everyone’s fit, but would change the look up front


    Skrtel Carragher Agger

    Johnson Lucas Gerrard Meireles Aurelio


    I’d have gerrard more in a midfield three, getting forward as appropriate but operating fromt he engine room rather than in a prescribed advanced role. Johnson and Aurelio as Wingbacks because that’s what they are, and COle as a the free man dropping into the hole to link up play for torres

  • G // January 6, 2011 at 3:50 pm


    johnson/kelly agger carragher aurelio

    meireles gerrard pacheco

    cole torres babel

    I reckon 4-3-3 this may give the players who have failed to deliver consistently (which as i think about it now sounds like everyone) a chance to play a more attack minded formation. But i mean a genuine 4-3-3..not a 4-5-1 in disguise

    Ive included most of our creative players and the only two wth any pace.. I’d like to see what we could achieve with an attacking philosophy (you have to go back to Roy Evans to find a manager who approached games that way, sadly he played with a back 3 which i always struggled with, at least the football was watchable though)

    I hope that a new approach, plus an actual work ethic (something we have not witnessed from our players recently) can provide us with the tools to move forward.

    lets hope so

  • Carlos // January 6, 2011 at 4:04 pm

    Quite like the top view, but would prefer auralio as a proper L wing back. Also agger as the central of the 3 since he has the pace to cover each of the others and theskills to bring the ball out.
    kelly agger skrtel aurelio
    johnson gerard (lucas) mereiiles maxi
    cole (gerrard)

  • Man Utd fan // January 6, 2011 at 4:05 pm

    Can’t see half of this lot wanting to play in the championship next year.

  • Dan // January 6, 2011 at 4:08 pm

    I’ve said the 5-3-2, wing-back (or 3-5-2 whichever way you look at it) formation since the beginning of the season, especially since our only out and out winger is Maxi. Everyone else has been converted from another position, however Johnson would be much better used in Midfield than Defence.

    Up front i would either use Kuyt, as he normally scores when played as a striker, he’s able to pop up from nowhere and pick up tap-ins. Or i would give Pacheco more games. Failing either of them I might be tempted to see what Jovanovic could do when played up front rather than left wing.

  • Dan // January 6, 2011 at 4:10 pm

    Sorry meant up front WITH Torres would be either Kuyt, Pacheco or Jovanovic

  • richard // January 6, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    cole is awful and should be employed cleaning the toilets put pacheco in his position and that will be sound

  • Another Man U Fan // January 6, 2011 at 4:20 pm

    Bring back Hicks & Gillette!! They did a great job and should be offered the freedom of Manchester

  • Paul // January 6, 2011 at 4:28 pm

    I really can’t understand why we havent attempted to play 4-3-3 yet?

    It suits our squad down to the ground, in a similar way to which chelsea play the formation.

    Johnson Carragher Agger Aurelio
    Meireles Lucas Gerrard
    Kuyt Torres Babel

    This formation would solve a lot of problems:

    -Gerrard and Meireles can play together without anyone playing out of position
    -This is the formattion Meireles has played his whole career before Liverpool
    -Gerrard has a license to roam, much like Lampard at Chelsea
    -Meireles can assist atticking and defending
    -Kuyts perfect position?? a striker on the right?
    The left forward slot allows for any of; babel (in my team simply because of pace) cole, maxi, n’gog, jovanovic or pacheco to play in a role they would be comfortable with.


  • Kk // January 6, 2011 at 4:49 pm


  • G // January 6, 2011 at 5:08 pm

    I agree Paul. We should be playing 4-3-3. It’s baffles me why we don’t.

    in the team i displayed earlier i had pacheco in a midfield role. I thought he may be able to do an iniesta for us. I’d bloody love it if we could emulate Barca’s 4-3-3..we’d need better players first though

    Pacheco is a good example ..When he’s been in the team, we’ve looked threatening.. Woy just doesn’t get it

    More importantly i’d like us to recreate our own brand of we created pass and move all those years ago.

  • tony // January 6, 2011 at 5:10 pm

    Kelly Skrtel Agger Aurelio

    Johnson Meireles Gerrard Cole


    Thats what id like to see!!!!!!!!

  • Ben // January 6, 2011 at 5:12 pm

    Paul, it’s as if you stole my post, agree 100%.

  • Wayne // January 6, 2011 at 5:13 pm





    We are not going to “win” the league this year and next year will be our “rise to the top” so we may as well blood some youngsters with a good mix of veterenship. How worse can the right wing get with Pacheco in place with Gerrard playing just behind Torres and Cole (who looked decent last night) on the right and that the Pacheco, Gerrard and Cole could easily interchange throughout the game causing havoc, allowing Torres more space up front.

    Also Kelly and Wilson can do no worse than the current crop of useless bastards we have in defense. Fabio is better than Konchesky and Wilson is better than Kyriakrap, and Kelly offers more defense that Johnson. Agger speaks for himself.

    Lucas was awful last night so I would love to give Jonjo a go. In fact im not to all caught up with the defensive mid position, wtf, everyone should be able to defend, attack attack attack and the other team has to defend.

  • tony // January 6, 2011 at 5:20 pm

    Totally agree Wayne, a central midfielder should be able to do the lot.

  • rowan // January 6, 2011 at 5:20 pm


    Play the 1-1-1-1 formation untill the owners buy us some decent other players!

  • Ak // January 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm

    Sorry but people who would put some reserve players in their starting team need to wake up. The only one who’s showed any real promise is Kelly. Players such as Pacheco, Suso, etc im sure have great talent however, the premier league is too physical for them. The Europa League may be more suited for them as it is not as physical or quick as the Preniership.

    A team more suited for the Premier League would be

    Johnson Carragher Agger Aurelio

    Maxi Gerrard Mireles Cole

    Kuyt Torres

    Liverpool have lacked width for some time now so a Winger in January is essential. However, with a natural winger in Maxi im sure that may be a short term solution. Ngog can’t meet the physical demands of the premiership. Lucas looks out of depth unless we are at home or he has another defensive midfielder alongside him. Torres isn’t going to work his socks off up front on his own, this is where kuyt comes in to help out. A winger, left back and a striker are essential if we are to qualify for Europe this season.

  • Darren // January 6, 2011 at 5:36 pm

    last night was yet another example of why Stevie G can not be utilised as a centre midfielder, as he allowed Johnson to become exposed for their goal, instead of tracking back. SG is not a centre midfielder and is needed as a genuine goal threat at the other end ! everyone stop listening to Andy Gray ! (and you too Roy !)

    my team lineup in a return to the familiar 4-2-3-1 which in effect is 4-5-1 and at times 4-2-4 !
    gk – Reina
    defence – Agger, Skrtel, Aurelio, Johnson (Kelly and Wilson have a shout, but i’ll stick with experience for now)
    midfield 2 of Lucas and Meireles
    attacking mid 3 of Stevie G, Maxi and 1 of either Jovaonic/Cole/Kuyt

    that team can destroy anyone and still leaves a bench to pick from of Jovanovic/Cole/Kuyt, Babel, Ngog, Shelvey, Poulsen, Pachecho, Kyriagos. you could also have had Insua, Aqualani and even El Zhar if they all werent on loan. that squad to me is top 4 without a doubt.

  • Victor // January 6, 2011 at 8:48 pm

    Schwarzer, Konchesky, Hangeland, Baird, Hughes, Etuhu, Duff, Murphy, Dempsey, Davies, Zamora.

    Oh wait a minute…

  • Maso Generous // January 7, 2011 at 6:16 am

    Am very sorry for my fellow fans/supporters of Liverpool, they have eyes but they don’t see. This is why i say this, Lucas and Maxi have cost us a lot so they(fans) shouldn’t be mentioning those two anywhere in our team. Let anyone be frank and tell me which number Lucas plays, then Maxi is not a good no. 11 neither no. 7, he’s best days are past, so drop those two and a huge change will be seen in our team.

  • Maso Generous // January 7, 2011 at 6:20 am

    Please i pray Pacheco is given chance to prove what he is worth.

  • kopgolfer // January 7, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    Kelly Carragher Agger Aurelio
    Johnson Mireles Jovanovic
    Kelly should be playing every week, put johnson further forward to do more damage in opponents box instead of ours. This line up gives us more pace and some more creativety as well. Comments please

  • KopYank // January 7, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    Just me, or is that the same lineup Roy’s been putting out there when all our players are healthy? Only difference I see is that Johnson’s been moved up to play as a midfielder (as if he has trouble getting forward from fullback…his problem’s always been defending). And Cole is pushed forward alongside Gerrard so they’re stepping on each other’s toes. Not seeing the novelty here.

  • IH8UTD // January 7, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    He who dares wins!

  • ivor // January 7, 2011 at 9:49 pm

    this should be the formation
    –Johnson—— Carragher——- Agger——Aurelio

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