The Liverpool squad battling Leeds features Argentina's captain and world class players for Spain and the Netherlands, and that doesn't include a starter who's rumored to be very good (Jaimie Carragher). Yet they are clearly getting outplayed by a League 1 outfit through 55 minutes, particularly in terms of pace. As I type this, Beckford should have drilled one home for Leeds but for a brilliant dive to his right by Cavalieri. This season has featured two 4-0 blowouts for the Reds and every other game, win or lose, as featured massive stretches of being dominated.
Nearly every corner kick has given Liverpool fits. Whether or not zonal marking should work, it's failing once again, this time with an almost completely different roster than the one that's bled from set pieces all year. If Rafa were less stubborn, I'd expect a change eventually, but it's one of the pillars of his system, and he has yet to give up any of the philosophies that got him to this point.
Mascherano and Carragher are two of the worst players on the pitch today, and with Philip Degan and David Ngog out there, that's quite a diss. But both regulars are struggling with controlling the ball and have been beaten multiple times. At this point, Carragher is more than a disappointment. He's a liability. This is probably his final year as a regular, and I would prefer that he lose the job immediately upon Agger's return. As for Masch, his performances won't help draw interest from Barca. And if he isn't careful, Benitez will play Lucas as the holding midfielder once Aquilani is healthy.
Maybe no one cares about the Carling Cup, but I'd hate to lose to Leeds. I'd like to take this chance to pray to whatever gods favor Albert Riera and Ryan Babel for mercy and a goal. No one wants to say they were the team that gave Leeds the confidence to climb all the way back to the Premiership.