After another home performance which provided real evidence of encouragement, the question that remains on fans' lips is there light at the end of the tunnel for Liverpool as their winning habits continue to desert them?

A 1-1 draw against an abject Newcastle United who played the latter stages of the match minus their defensive lynchpin and captain Fabricio Coloccini is the latest home result. Normally a difficult place for visitors to travel with the exultant Kop and vociferous support from the Reds' faithful, teams are finding it easier to make the journey to Merseyside as Alan Pardew's men, despite reaching the heights of their potential, claimed a point and became the eighth team this season to avoid defeat at Anfield. Will Anfield ever be the fortress it was under the likes of Rafael Benitez, Graeme Souness and Kenny Dalglish- in the Scotsman's first spell in charge?

One positive for Brendan Rodgers was the performance of his number seven Luis Suarez. The only fit senior striker in the ranks at present, the Uruguayan was irrepressible with an all-round top quality display which would bring hope to fans in the time of an attacking crisis. The 25-year old was a constant menace for the Newcastle defence to cope with, running directly at the two centre-backs from the first few minutes and on another day may have earned his team a penalty when Coloccini challenged him inside the box on four minutes. His ability to wriggle past defenders single-handedly and create shooting opportunities illustrates that he is more than capable of playing upfront on his own.

Another game at Anfield and yet more disappointment for the home support. The draw typified the Reds’ struggles at their spiritual home, an 18-month run of results which makes particularly poor reading. The Merseyside club have now won just three of their last 15 Premier League games in L4, a run which is simply not good enough for a team with their lofty aspirations. However, Sunday’s game also perfectly conveyed a twist in the narrative which is seemingly unique to this season, as Luis Suarez saved the hosts from embarrassment with a superb goal. He produced a barely believable piece of control and matched it with a calm finish, only to see his side fail to build on their second-half superiority and find a winner.

The Uruguayan has previously attracted criticism for his profligacy, but that ill seems to be have been well and truly consigned to the past. Seven league goals in ten games dictate that the blame for recent toothless performances can no longer lie at the feet of Suarez- whilst his team-mates’ contributions surely deserve further scrutiny. There may be controversy surrounding him taking a dive too easily in the penalty area, however when he is on his feet, it brings a sparkle to the match. He and Sterling have been the only shining lights in this Liverpool team this campaign. Allen and Gerrard have been on the fringes- these key players need to step up to the plate, and quickly.

The red card to Coloccini with such little time left is brainless and non-sensical on his part. With your team in a good position with seven minutes to go, drawing 1-1 and defending relatively well, it is rather baffling to see your captain challenge someone in that manner. He may not have made a great deal of contact with Suarez but the intent was evident and the linesman Stuart Burt was correct to instruct the referee to brandish a red card which mystified Pardew on the sidelines. But the Newcastle manager will not have many complaints once he has witnessed the challenge again on the TV replays in the dressing room. The Argentine had a poor match- he was nowhere near the form he reached last season and in their last away match at Sunderland, where he was immense.

Suso struggled yet again in the hustle and bustle of the Premier League, showing some marvellous touches on the ball but failing to truly impact on the game or threaten the goal. Meanwhile, Raheem Sterling, for all his qualities and tender years, still appears some way from being a consistent goal threat at this level.

But it is not just in attack where the former Ajax man has little help. It is hard not to think that a player of his calibre looks around at the evident weaknesses in the team and sighs to himself, wondering when those positions will be filled by competent incumbents.

Jose Enrique is likely to have attracted as much ire from the 25-year-old as he did his own fans during the clash with the Magpies. The Spaniard’s attempts to match Andrea Dossena’s bid for the title of ‘worst Liverpool full-back in history’ are as comic as they are worrying and his problems on the left flank present yet another hole to plug.

Stewart Downing was tasked with turning the game in the hosts’ favour, but fell short of the standards required as he failed to help Suarez’s one-man push for three points with any effective contributions. That £16 million signing Jordan Henderson remained on the bench whilst this frustration grew must surely add to concern over a squad sorely lacking in quality. These are the problems which ensure Brendan Rodgers will need every single second of his three-year deal to turn things around. But whether Suarez will take that journey with him is the question which must have entered the Northern Irishman’s head at some point.

At times he looks simply too good for this Liverpool side, and it will remain that way unless Rodgers can match the Salto-born striker’s quality with his next additions to the squad. Of course, the 39-year-old has already signalled his intention to delve into the transfer market in January, but the gravity of the decisions he must make is now clearer than ever. Liverpool desperately need to add goals if they are to avoid a mid-table finish and having their reputation as a mediocre side cemented. But they must also convince their leading lights that a bright future at Anfield is coming, and soon.

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