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"Disappointment Points To Progress": Liverpool 1 - ManUre 1

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We can't believe he moved!
We can't believe he moved!

That was Kenny's summation, but it doesn't feel that way. It's hard to be anything but discouraged when the Mancs are happy. And they clearly are. This is what they set out for, and this is what they got. But it was right there, wasn't it?

This match started out as they all do, at such a frantic pace with such nervous energy that it's essentially multiball pinball with very little football being played. After about 20 minutes or so it calmed down, with United mirroring our formation and basically keeping everything quiet. And as always, once everything settles there's a chance or two, but if you don't make them you only shrink the margin for error and raise the tension. So it was with Suarez's miss, as fortuitously as it came to him.

After the break the match never really took off until Gerrard's goal. And then it was firewagon stuff. United threw on what seemed like 17 strikers, and eventually found an equalizer. After that, we all knew it was either going to be a case of the imposing array of attacking talent United had on the pitch making this a very queasy affair, or the space that lineup would leave leading Liverpool with a chance to take the match back. It was the latter, but Liverpool couldn't quite manage it. I'm still in marvel of De Gea's save on Henderson, as I think the ball was behind him when he got to it. That close.

Thoughts:

-Some will question the marking on United's equalizer, but that's kind of what Hernandez does (and this douche is going to be a rash on the inside of my ass for the club and country I support). Sometimes there's a good delivery, a good flick, and someone right where they need to be. If anything Carragher losing Welbeck for the flick is what you can criticize, but the delivery was hit with some pace.

-As for Liverpool's goal, Adam was fouled, however lightly. And it capped a decent match for the Scot. I know we all had our eyes focused on him hawkishly, as this didn't seem to be the occasion he was made for. While he wasn't pulling the strings, he wasn't cutting them off either. A couple nice runs, one leading to Suarez's chance and one to the free kick. Got caught at times, but not all that often. Tidy I guess would be the best word. He doesn't always have to be a liability in a big match.

-Is there a position Steven Gerrard can't play? I counted four today, wide on both flanks at times, attacking midfielder when he and Kuyt switched, and then taking Lucas's spot as the deepest midfielder. While you hate to rely on one guy so much, it's hard not to do so when it's a guy of this quality.

-Maybe this is hopeful, but with the amount of crosses Liverpool did get in today, I was kind of hoping Andy Carroll would see the last 15 minutes or so. Especially with Jordan Henderson buzzing for his cameo and Suarez tiring a bit off, it may have been worth a shot. I understand not taking your creative focal point off, but still..

-Martin Kelly and Jose Enrique were the dominant force on the field, and that didn't change when it was Nani instead of Park.

-Oh, that's what Jordan Henderson does. Shame about your header there though, son.

It feels so empty when you've wasted that much emotion in the week leading up to the match in anticipation and pure stress of such a game that ends in a draw. Maybe United were paying us a compliment in setting out for a draw. But if that's the case, then it's kind of a failure when that's what they get.

But not a disastrous result, and some positives to take. Now there's a nice run of games before the next International break and the Chelsea-City gauntlet that awaits after that. Norwich, West Brom, and Swansea scream nine of nine. If Liverpool achieve that (and performances like today would almost guarantee that even though there's better in the squad), and I think we'll like where The Reds sit.