In Defence Of Jamie Carragher…
Football fans and critics have a very short memory. Opinions that stem out of this memory also lack rationality and border baseless criticism.
Since the last three years, Jamie has been getting a lot of stick for his lack of defending. As a Liverpool fan, my reflex is to defend one of the greatest players to have ever played for the club. But it is not only about the bias.
Every defender has a bad game. Footballers go through lean spells but World-class footballers put in that one performance that silences their critics. And Jamie did just that in the Merseyside Derby.
Carragher undoubtedly has lost some pace but his astute reading of the game has not deteriorated one bit .On a sunny, pressure-packed afternoon, Jamie Carragher stamped his class at Goodison Park. Tim Cahill has an effective aerial prowess and scores headers with ease in the league. Carragher won almost every aerial ball against Cahill .Everton were a depleted side after the sending-off but its always harder playing against 10 men and Carragher effectively killed off , the unpredictable Louis Saha’s game with his incisive tackling .He did not put a single foot wrong.
Carragher’s verbose and organizing skills often go unsung. You rarely see a mix-up between the goalkeeper and the defense. Carragher plays every game with his heart on his sleeve and is still one of the first names on that team sheet.
Within the England setup, Jamie Carragher is under-rated. He is no less than John Terry and as effective as Rio Ferdinand (if not better). In my opinion, he did not get enough games to prove his mettle .This fact being emphasized by Fabio Capello persuading him to come out of retirement. What has instigated me is the fact that even Liverpool fans have been questioning his abilities. His last-ditch tackles have saved countless games for Liverpool.
Lets rewind Liverpool fan, If Jamie Carragher can out-wit and out-fight Andriy Shevchenko in a European Final with a strained muscle, he deserves more than ‘carra’s getting old’. He has been found wanting in a lot of games , he drops too deep , he doesn’t get forward too often , doesn’t score too many goals but he had Fernando Torres in his pocket at Stamford Bridge , the same Fernando Torres who walked all over Nemanja Vidic (arguably , the best defender in the league) at Old Trafford.
Do not write him off yet. Jamie Carragher can defend, just ask the AC Milan squad of 2005/2006.