Headers and Strength: Two Things David N'gog Needs To Work On

Neri SteinFeatured ColumnistAugust 26, 2010

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - AUGUST 05:  David Ngog of Liverpool appeals during the Europa League, Third Qualifying Round, Second Leg match between Liverpool and FK Rabotnicki at Anfield on August 5, 2010 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Clive Mason/Getty Images

David N'gog has had a good start to the season with the Reds scoring four goals in all, including three against Rabotnicki in Liverpool's earlier Europa League qualifying tie. He's impressed far more than he's disappointed in a Liverpool shirt, but Thursday's game at Trabzonspor highlighted just what he needs to improve.

Joe Cole put a perfect cross in the box in the 52nd minute, and while N'gog met the ball well, he directed it wide from just six yards out. He also missed a similar chance against Arsenal that would've given the Reds a 2-0 lead.

Headers have never been the Frenchman's strong point, but it's something he needs to improve because it's where a majority of his scoring chances come from. He can get up high enough and meet the ball with enough power, he just needs to get better at directing them.

Another fault in N'gog's game that Trabzonspor highlighted is his strength. He was knocked off the ball too many times and far too easily against the Turkish side. The man he stands in for, Fernando Torres, said that one of the first things he learned when he cam to the Premier League was that he would need to beef up.

N'gog has a slight figure and his first touch is not always the best, so he will need to get stronger and learn to keep the ball better because he is often the furthest player forward and needs to wait for support.

N'gog is currently the only out-and-out striker Liverpool has to cover for Torres, and while his overall game and composure are impressive for a 21-year-old, he needs to brush up on some of his skills , or Roy Hodgson will need another back-up plan.