Sunday, February 8, 2009

The chosen one

Kicking off what is set to be "Liverpool Pulls A Rabbit Out Of Fratton Park Appreciation Week" here at Match Pricks (at least from the Scouse half of this setup), I want to give full credit to one Yossi Benayoun, whose tenure at Anfield has, to this point, been marked by rather middling forays into the box with too much dribbling, not enough shooting and nothing overly remarkable. But in the last three weeks, he's been the one mid-level Liverpool player to accelerate his game. And if this improbable title chase is going to continue, he's going to need to keep it up.

We stop at this moment to appreciate the quality with which Benayoun cut it back onto Torres' head for the winner. If Yossi had been standing directly in front of Torres and attempted to drop the ball onto his head from a foot away he couldn't have placed it any better. The only way this is going to happen is if a heretofore unheralded player elevates his play to a level commensurate with the excellence we've come to expect from Alonso, Torres and Gerrard. Benayoun has shown that elevation over the last few weeks. Now, he needs to keep it up for another three months. Saturday at Fratton Park was an excellent continuation of what Liverpool needs to make this happen.

I still can't believe it.

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