Tactic Talk – Optimism returns to Anfield as Charlie Adam finds his feet

Liverpool continued their unbeaten start to the season with a 3-1 win over Bolton Wanderers at Anfield, as goals from summer signings Jordan Henderson and Charlie Adam either side of a Martin Skrtel strike saw The Reds take all three points. While Kenny Dalglish’s Liverpool revolution now looks to be in full swing, the signing of Adam may prove pivotal in their progression.

In the absence of Steven Gerrard, Liverpool have often been seen as vulnerable without their talismanic captain, and with Xabi Alonso departing for Real Madrid two years ago, many critics suggest Livepool have lacked a dominant force in the centre of midfield, an area Dalglish has moved to strengthen this summer.

A star in a Blackpool side which earned admiration in their relegation last season, Adam was chased by a number of clubs throughout the entirety of the season. Rumoured to be close to a move away from the club in January, Adam saw out the season, before being granted his wish to remain in the top flight after Blackpool’s demise.

As a player known for his committed displays, Adam’s energy and enthusiasm has earned himself admirers early on among his new club’s supporters. However, in the absence of Gerrard, Adam has also proven to be a productive midfield player, a leading figure from the centre of the field has seen Adam score his first goal for the club in a strong display against Bolton.

After claiming an assist as Skrtel converted the midfielder’s corner kick, Adam added his own name to the scoresheet. Breaking from midfield, Adam received a pass in-field from Dirk Kuyt, driving forward to the edge of the box, the Scotland international unleashed a powerful low drive past Jussi Jaaskelainen in the Bolton goal.

As well as being involved creatively, Adam kept Liverpool ticking over throughout the game, controlling the play with a range of passing, at both ends of the field. Moving the ball out of defence, with the hosts continuing to put Bolton under pressure, Adam found his range, picking out teammates with numerous long passes, his midfield play at times echoing the famous array of passing displayed by his new skipper.

As Liverpool ran out comfortable 3-1 winners, Liverpool’s new signings have certainly contributed to the cause, with their side sitting third on seven points with three matches played. While the league table is traditionally discarded in the early stages of the season, with Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea completing the top four, the top end of the league would appear to already have a predictable feel.

With Adam at the heart of the proceedings at Anfield, alongside the impressive Luiz Suarez, continuing his impressive form following his January arrival, Liverpool have certainly shown their intent to return to their previous place among England and Europe’s top clubs. While the eventual return of Gerrard will also bring about even greater optimism, Liverpool fans will be hoping for a return to success with their current squad.

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