Laudrup set to resurrect the bench for Halloween?

Posted by Max Hicks

When the Premier League season fixtures were announced in the summer, one of the first matches Swans' fans looked for was the first meeting with Liverpool, the reunion with Brendan Rodgers and Joe Allen. It was to be on Sunday 25th November at The Liberty, and it still is, in terms of league play. However, the Capital One Cup has thrown the sides together earlier than expected, and at Anfield to boot.

It is possible for the sides to split the league fixtures, perhaps take a draw in both or a win per piece. In the Cup, there has to be one winner, a fact which could give one side a psychological advantage in the forthcoming league fixtures, or bragging rights if nothing else.

Of course, an early stages league cup tie will not necessarily be a priority for either manager, so this game could amount to little more than a dress rehearsal with the understudies. Michael Laudrup, however, has spoken about his desire to aim for as much success as possible whilst Brendan Rodgers, hungry to validate the faith shown in him, will take whatever he can get, although success in this exact competition last season couldn't save his predecessor.

The game represents the second of three fixtures the Swans will play over just seven days, so it's a safe bet a few of the regulars will be rested. Here then is a glance at some of the Swans faithful squad players, who will be keen for a start on Halloween.

Gerhard Tremmel
Tremmel has been the model of patience and professionalism, not so much warming the bench as glued to it whilst Michel Vorm established himself as the Swans star turn in goal. With Vorm suffering an injury against Manchester City, Tremmel finally has his chance. He'll be starting against Liverpool, and possibly for the next six to eight weeks beyond. Tremmel's technical execution is like something from the pages of a goalkeeping manual, every save looking like the stereotypical example. Whether he's got some highlight reel saves in his locker to go with those fundamentals is the question.

Alan Tate
The always reliable, ever loyal Alan Tate is the ultimate team man. He's the Swans resident utility player (along the back, and even in goal in a pinch) and could see some action, if only to stop the rust setting in. An occasionally clumsy, lumbering defender, look for one or two freak moments of brilliance if he plays.

Kemy Agustien
The Dutch midfield man has been out with injury of late, but is reportedly fit again and could be in the reckoning for a starting berth. Although sadly no longer sporting his B.A. Baracus hairdo (it lasted a day or two last season), Agustien can still turn heads with a choice selection of deadly long range passes. It seems fitting that a proponent (and a good one) of the Hollywood long pass might get a game in Steven Gerrard's back yard. If both men play, I'd take 10 on the over/under for the number of ridiculously ambitious passes attempted (and a side bet that Agustien connects more of them).

Dwight Tiendalli
Another Dutch player, brought in to shore up the squad at full back. It is a tribute to youngster Ben Davies that he has so far kept Tiendalli on the bench. Davies needs a rest though, if only to get his breath back and afford himself a little perspective to assess all he's accomplished so far. In the meantime, Tiendalli, a player with Champions League experience who was curiously available on a free, will have another rare chance to show his quality.

There could also be starts for Jazz Richards at right back, whose superior pace over Angel Rangel might match up better with Raheem Sterling should the Liverpool pocket-rocket play, Luke Moore or Itay Shechter up front and Europe's former most creative player Mark Gower in the middle of the park. Of course, one player Swans fans will be very interested in seeing is Joe Allen. It remains to be seen whether Brendan Rodgers will save that particular treat for the proper homecoming on the 25th of next month.

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