Ipswich bring Liverpool down to earth

By Steve Curry of "The Daily Express"

There are some Liverpool players who can expect Kenny Dalglish's Manager of the Month bottle of whisky across the back of the head rather than out of a glass.


For having swept jauntily through January undefeated they faltered at Ipswich where they might have expected to complete a hat-trick of victories.


Liverpool thrashed Ipswich 5-0 last August and 3-0 last week, and perhaps Jan Molby's published opinion that Ipswich had a soft under-belly would have been best kept to himself. Something had certainly fired Suffolk Punch into Bobby Ferguson's young and developing side for they breathed some warmth into the teeth of the freezing gale that blew straight up the Portman Road pitch.


"We got what we deserved", said Dalglish. "The two goals they scored were down to ourselves."

I still believe the biggest mistake Liverpool made came from Dalglish himself when he decided to keep on his double brested suit and sit in the stand after Ian Rush had been ruled unfit.

Instead, he introduced Sammy Lee into midfield and Craig Johnston up alongside Paul Walsh with Molby making the occasional forages from his sweepers's position.


Playing with three centre halves and pushing the full backs forward does not seem to be a Liverpool-like tactic though Dalglish insists: "Sometimes changes works for you and sometimes against you. You want players who are adaptable and have ability to play different positions. You can give it a try. It doesn't mean you have to stay like that."


I can't see why Dalglish needs to tamper with a central defense of Mark Lawrenson and Alan Hansen which has served the club so ably over such a long period of time and are certainly far from old men.


Dalglish would gladly have swapped his gallon of Bell's whisky for three points he said. But Ferguson was not in a mood to trade those three for anything. He said: :This was a very important game for this club. I told the players that beating Liverpool could help put Ipswich back where it stood in the eyes of our fans four years ago.


"Success against sides like Liverpool, Arsenal and West Ham will help our crowd to believe in the young lads. Make no mistake, they are babies I have out there. You are seeing teenagers, 18 and 19 years old a lot of them. Winning matches like this puts the club and the players back on the map again."


Mich D'Avray scored the equalising header to Ronnie Whelan's first half goal. Kevin Wilson got the winner, his 13th of the season, with a superb left-foot volley from a difficult angle after Steve Nicol had failed to clear.


Copyright - The Daily Express

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