Why "farce" is a word that gets tossed around a lot, usually wrongly, the actual definition fits here. "Ludicrously impossible situation." I don't know how to put it better myself. Nate at Oh You Beauty already stole my line, which would have been we have to laugh at it, because if we don't we're going to cry.
If it had come in a different part of the season, we could just sort of brush it off as one of those days. Wait, no we couldn't. Because the entire season has been either acceptable to strong performances that aren't illustrated by the only thing that matters. Goals. Once gain, there weren't any. There was everything but them. Woodwork molested, near misses, blown chances, maybe even a penalty shout. Once again, Liverpool are all foreplay and bad drunken sex that just never ends and never gets where it needs to. And of course, after it's over you just are happy you can go to sleep now.
In the end, though it's a loss to Hodgson that he didn't really do anything other than line up 10 guys in the 18 to blunt Liverpool, it doesn't matter much. The league season was shot long before this, and Liverpool have already proved they don't need momentum from their league games to carry into their cup games. It's as if there are two Liverpool's, one for each competition.
Still very annoying, though.
-It shouldn't be a shock, but it is how much different a player Jordan Henderson looks when he gets to run the show in the middle of midfield. Yes, he's a culprit too today, sending one chance wide and another into the crossbar. But he was still at the heart of most things Liverpool did. He's lively, his passing is crisp, he just makes things happen from there. And he even put in a decent cross. So there you go.
-I'm on Andy Carroll's side, but he's going to have to develop a ruthless streak at some point. Because this five chances needed for one goal (and not even that today) is not working for me. When Liverpool get back to playing big matches regularly, he's only going to get one or two looks a game, and he's got to bury them.
-My complaints about Dirk Kuyt are well known, but I thought being presented a chance from 12 yards with no one around is exactly why he's in the lineup. Of course, I'm sure he'll blame lack of matches for his wayward finish. Whatever, enjoy Germany.
-The only defending Liverpool had to do was because of its own mistake from Glen Johnson, and maybe that one chance where Shane Long decided it would be too easy to shoot when alone with Reina. But Johnson gave the ball away, and suddenly Mulumbu and Odemwingie were on a 2-on-0. I'm sure there will be some asking questions of Reina on the goal, and I'm one of them. I know on that kind of chance you're basically guessing, and Reina purely guessed wrong. But to be beaten that easily without even moving?
-One day, Jay Spearing is going to crash one in from 25 yards. I don't know that it'll make up for the 703 that he's missed, but we'll see then.
It's just another confounding game from the men in Red. If you want to argue that it's another performance that shows they're not far away from being a very good team, there's enough there for you. If you want to use it as proof that they're far far away, there's that too.
Here I am, stuck in the middle with you.