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ESPN – Should Liverpool change their tactics again after losing to Man United?

A brace from Juan Mata put a five-point gap between Liverpool and Manchester United in the race for a coveted Champions League spot. ESPN FC's Craig Burley calls out UK pundits for taking it easy on Liverpool's Steven Gerrard following his red card against Manchester United. The ESPN FC panel talk managerial tactics and debate whether or not Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal got the better of Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers. The ESPN FC panel discuss Steven Gerrard's straight red card and how it will reflect upon his legacy. ESPN FC's Craig Burley breaks down Juan Mata's brace, Steven Gerrard's red card, Wayne Rooney's missed penalty and more in Manchester United's 2-1 win over Liverpool at Anfield. Liverpool FC manager Brendan Rodgers says Steven Gerrard was frustrated with their play in the first half. When Liverpool were beaten by Manchester United in a 3-0 loss in December, it sparked a three-month unbeaten run in the Premier League for the Merseysiders. That run came to a shuddering halt on Sunday when United once again inflicted defeat on their arch rivals, a result that now leaves Liverpool's chances of a top four finish hanging by a thread. The club's manager Brendan Rodgers will be hoping his players respond in similar fashion to last time, but for that to happen he may need to get his thinking…

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ESPN – Write Manchester City off at your peril as Pellegrini plots Chelsea downfall

ESPN FC analyst Craig Burley believes Manchester City's loss to Middlesbrough in the FA Cup was deserved as Manuel Pellegrini's side travelled to the Middle East and arrived back far too close to their weekend clash. It's not even 10 years ago that Manchester City's motto would have been better as wallow in self-pity rather than pride in battle. Only City could mess up in ways previously unknown to the sport. There was no reason for the fans to think that a bad run of form would come to an end — and it was always a surprise when they went away from home and put three past a slightly better team. MANCHESTER CITY LATEST – Boiling Point: Man City disrespected fans – Mooney: No excuses after shock cup loss – Pellegrini: Trip to Abu Dhabi not to blame – Sources: Milner off to Liverpool – FC TV: Marco Reus on the radar – Hart: City can put things right at Chelsea – Mooney: City failing with same old routine Maybe it's wishful thinking based on a flimsy string of recent evidence, but there's been a shift at Eastlands in…

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LIVER BIRD – MATCH PREVIEW: Liverpool V Bolton Wanderers

Liverpool welcome Bolton Wanderers to Anfield on Saturday evening for an FA Cup clash and in the process will welcome back ex Red Emile Heskey. He’s sure to get a warm welcome as he steps out in front of the Kop but the Anfield faithful will be hoping his name does not end up on the score sheet.A much improved performance for the Reds against Chelsea in the League Cup on Tuesday evening has put Liverpool very much on a high. The downside for Brendan Rodgers of course is that he will have to manage his team selection with one eye on the must win second leg against Chelsea.Injury news for the Reds has been somewhat improved this week with Dejan Lovren, Mario Balotelli and Glen Johnson all back in training. For Bolton they have a growing injury list and are unable to call upon Lee Chung-yong, Marc Tierney, Craig Davies, Mark Davies and Max Clayton.Bolton’s last league game saw them notch up a win over Sheffield Wednesday. They currently find themselves 15th in the table however they have only lost one game in their last 10. Liverpool of course recently picked up a draw against Chelsea at Anfield and are sitting 8th in the Premier League having also lost just one of their last 10 games.The last time the two sides met was in January 2012. A single goal from Craig Bellamy for Liverpool was no match for Bolton who put three into the Liverpool net via Steinsson, Davies and Reo-Coker. The last meeting between the sides at Anfield was a reverse scoreline with Henderson, Skrtel and Charlie Adam on the score sheet that day. Ivan Klasnic scored a 90th minute consolation goal for Bolton.I asked you for your score predictions and whether you were excited to see old Ivanhoe back at Anfield and here are a few of the tweets I received:@LFCKirstyLFC Massively looking forward to seeing big Emile back. Liverpool 3 – Bolton W 1— The Anfield Shrine (@anfieldshrine) January 23, 2015 @LFCKirstyLFC 2-0 LFC— Barrel Rider (@Bry_LFC7) January 23, 2015 @LFCKirstyLFC 3-1 Sterling 2,Coutinho.— kop in full voice (@LFCmayhem) January 23, 2015You may have guessed it, but I’d love to see Balotelli start tomorrow or at least feature. There’s no real excuse this time either because Brendan needs to manage his side for the Chelsea game so just bloody play him!!!It will be a great game also for youngsters such as Rossiter to be given another chance and I would like to think whatever the team we will have enough to make it past Bolton. I might pop a few bets on but I’m working a match beforehand so keep your eyes on Twitter if you want to follow my useless tips haha!Enjoy the match folks, wherever you are watching!Like “The Liver Bird” on Facebook – www.facebook.com/TheLiverBirdsBlog

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