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What role for Suso?

Date: 11th November 2012 at 11:00 am
Written by: | Comments (12)

is an exciting young player. Of that there is no doubt, and staff and fans alike should be delighted that he is on our books. However, it is my opinion that his best will not be seen for some time.

The young Spaniard has become a regular starter for Liverpool over the past couple of months after making his debut in the thrilling victory over .

It was great to see such a young Liverpool side, including fellow debutant Andre Wisdom, play with such freedom and expression as they stuck five goals past the Swiss.

Then, just a few days later came a big surprise. Liverpool, down to ten men, at home to bitter rivals , bring on Suso at half-time despite having the more experienced Nuri Sahin and on the bench.

I nearly fell off my seat when I saw that he had come on. It said a huge amount about the new Liverpool. A manager who isn’t afraid to play young, inexperienced players, nor pluck them from the Under 21’s in the first place. It was highly refreshing.

For years, we have been wondering where on Earth the talent stocked at our multi-million pound academy has been hiding and we thank for giving them the opportunities. I refuse to believe that Liverpool have not had youngsters in their ranks of similar quality or potential to outshine the likes of Albert Riera, Josemi, Andrea Dossena, to name but a few.

So with the likes of Sterling, Suso, Wisdom, Sinclair and Morgan all getting games, we can see a strong determination from our manager to get the club playing attractive football through players already at the club. This maybe because of his inability to sign more players in the Summer transfer window, but you get the feeling that part of his mission would be to give a chance to all who deserve one.

Suso played brilliantly against United and looked one of the most composed performers on the pitch, in a midfield role. He played a big part in Liverpool’s goal and barely put a foot wrong until a slightly wayward pass was punished in ultimate fashion by the visitors – with the help of the referee. Suso’s overall performance was very impressive and encouraging and a few days later came off the bench to influence the Reds to victory at in the .

Since then, he has started all of Liverpool’s Premiership games, and been brought off in each one too. Despite showing moments of class, his influence has not been of the highest order in the majority of these games and as a result of not influencing from his advanced position, has contributed to Liverpool’s lack of goals.


This is not a criticism of the man signed from Cadiz in 2010, as I believe that he is being played too much, and more significantly, out of position. When Suso came on against United, Rodgers chose to play him alongside Gerrard and Allen in a three man midfield. Rodgers clearly believed that his ability from the centre of the park was such that he could aid a side down to 10 men, in a midfield three, against the likes of Carrick, Kagawa, Giggs and Valencia. Suso played very well, as mentioned earlier. So why has Rodgers played him as a wide forward ever since?

Surely Suso’s position is in the centre of the park, exchanging neat passes here and there and threading in through balls as all good little Spaniards do these days. Liverpool do have a number of central midfielders at the moment but that is no reason to play somebody out of position. He clearly hasn’t had the impact that the manager would like from out wide as Liverpool aren’t scoring many goals and he has been substituted every time he has started in the league.

I hate to champion the work of , but over the years the Scot has been a master of introducing youngsters at the right time. His squad rotation has been quite brilliant, choosing to give young players and squad members time on the pitch, when the time is right. The number of such players who have been used correctly at Old Trafford has been a huge contribution to their success. Apart from the golden youth team of Scholes et.al, the likes of John O’Shea, Wes Brown, Darron Gibson, Federico Macheda, Darren Fletcher, Jonny Evans, Danny Wellbeck and even Luke Chadwick have been made great use of, before either being deemed good enough to keep, or moved on. None of these players were thrown into the side and kept there from the off, they were introduced gradually, usually in games at Old Trafford against the cannon fodder of the league.

It is great to see the likes of Suso getting so much game time, but it would perhaps make more sense to play him in home games against the likes of Reading, and in Europa and League Cup games, then if a big impact is not made, give somebody else a chance, like Jonjo Shelvey or Oussama Assaidi who has not seen as much of the first team limelight as he would have liked.

This extended run in the first team may well have a great impact on the development of Suso, and we will probably see the benefits of it in the New Year, or next season. However, I do believe that he is being played out of position and would be of much more use to Liverpool when breaking forward from the middle, with the big picture in front of him, rather than being stuck out wide, trying to precisely feed the very few players that Liverpool have tended to get into the box so far this season.


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12 thoughts on “What role for Suso?

  • steve
    2 years ago

    Our best starting eleven in my opinion right now(should everybody be fit):
    Reina
    Johnson Skrtel Agger Enrique
    Gerrard Lucas Allen
    Sterling Suarez Assaidi
    Bench:Jones Coates Wisdom Henderson Sahin Suso Borini
    Come January we need either a striker and slot Suarez in the wings or another winger.
    YNWA

    Reply
    • martina
      2 years ago

      you mad ? allen and assaidi are second rate

      Reply
    • Red
      2 years ago

      LFC can’t win anything with this squad. MUST sign 3 strikers in coming transfer window.

      Reply
  • Abeni
    2 years ago

    We also need to sell Enrique then get a decent left back who is solid in defense and we can give jack Robinson some chance. Thumbs up for your performance lad.!!!!

    Reply
  • Jerry
    2 years ago

    Similar thoughts here and strongly agreed that Suso is best played through the centre and not out wide… We should stop putting square pegs in round holes so as to allow the true potential of our youngsters to fluorish as they should be… Cheers…

    Reply
  • Ynwa
    2 years ago

    Thank benitez

    Reply
  • shiraz
    2 years ago

    Partly agree with this article, that Suso is actually a brilliant and gifted midfielder. He changed the game against Anzi and had we had more than Cole to aim for, an equalizer would have come. Maybe rodgers should rest his stars but still let them travel in case they’re needed?
    The part that I disagree with is letting him get game time. I think rodgers plays him with the intent to bringing him off halfway through the second half. I don’t think his performance necessarily aid that process. He’s just easing him in timely fashion.
    On a different note, can you imagine what a world class striker would have been like to have? Not your dempseys of this world, but an out n out striker. Hurts to say it, but Nando up front with the level of skill we’re getting from Suarez/Sterling/Suso etc..its been a while since I’ve seen any flair in a liverpool side. More always grit (kuyt, gerrard, carra). With flair and finishing, we could honestly be up there…

    Reply
  • sandra F
    2 years ago

    Suso is better than Allen and Sahin

    Reply
    • CL
      2 years ago

      Allen does what he does, but he is not getting better as time progresses. I’ll agree Suso IS better than Sahin, so is Shelvey. Sahin is just the manager’s pet, always starts, always needs to be taken out to chase a game because Liverpool is slow and toothless. We need midfield players who can dribble through the center, link up play or join in the attack. Sahin does not do anything well and he is definitely very slow. Hope Rodgers can open his eyes soon and start Shelvey or Suso in the center over Sahin.

      Reply
  • kay
    2 years ago

    We can talk tactics,money,players,formation,JW Hendry,but, ultimately if we don’t bring Rafa back or another coach of his calibre,we will just remain a mid-table club. Since 2000 it has been realised in football that you can no longer keep a manager for future success,cos what happens after 5yrs if it doesnt work out? Do we start another 5yr project. Rafa won the CL in the first season,Pep won the double,Jose,Klopp,Wenger,Ancelotti to name a few. Guys like Fergie(going 5yrs without silverware,yet having the best budget) would never make the grade in the current game,he still be working somewhere in his hometown… So why as LFC are we trying to be a grooming arena for an unexperienced guy like Rogers? He should do his time like Pep did at Barca and understand the game more thoroughly,no disrespct to Rogers,but, WE ARE LIVERPOOL!!!! Besides Rafa brought in the likes of Suso,he’d know best how to use them..

    Reply
    • michaela
      2 years ago

      i agree , but FSG have their cheap manager in place , they wont spend money on bringing rafa

      Reply
  • joel
    2 years ago

    Assaidi will be a good player wait and see..Allen and lucas can not be in the same side.. We need a pacey winger and a number nine..
    Reina
    johnston srktel agger enrique
    sterling Sahin suso assaidi
    Gerrard
    suarez…
    At the moment..
    Huntellar and zaha would be nice..

    Reply

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