As before, time to listen to what the press have to say about the plans of different clubs for the upcoming transfer window (that is, in-between the discussion who becomes the new manager of a host of teams in various European leagues).
And as before, inconsistencies transpire in what Brendan Rodgers has to say about LFC in general and Suarez in particular:
Rodgers insists Liverpool owners Fenway Sports Group have been ‘absolutely unequivocal’ in their determination to hang on to the 26-year-old.
The only thing that might change that is Liverpool receiving an astronomical offer.
‘I had a meeting with the owners when they came over and talked about lots of things, and that was one of them. Every player has their price but there’s certainly no pressure for the club to sell him.
‘We’re trying to build that bit of quality so he’s not for sale.’
On the one hand, it is clear that ANY player can be sold if the management / owners think the price is right and a replacement can be found.
On the other hand, I would wonder (again): what are LFC’s priorities? Is it to play football or to balance the books? As soon as the players start gelling together, they are plucked out of the side, and more adjustments are needed… and then the process repeats itself…
We cannot afford the perpetual transition mode, next season is when LFC needs to move upwards significantly.
With the season finished, a lot of fans gather in discussions, attempting to interpret where we are and to see where we can realistically be next season.
A common source to tap on to draw the most solid conclusions is The Table.
“The table doesn’t lie”, they say, and this is usually (these last few years at least, where we change managers quickly after Benitez sacking and constant transitional periods see us lie around 7th-8th place in the table) followed by all kinds of poor stats that highlight how wrong we got it (or more specifically, that manager in that year).
I don’t believe tables lie, indeed I think they don’t. However, I think that fast and lazy “readings” of the table or numbers do mislead, especially when combined with emotions of disappointment.
In my opinion, while I can relate with frustrating emotions at times and we’ve all had them in the past 3 seasons, emotions should be set aside when trying to honestly understand what the table says.
I also believe that not all is black and white, and that usually it’s about which of the positives and negatives are more long term and which were temporal.
In this blog, I will attempt such a feat, and will share the process with you fellow fans and friends, hoping to provide the basis for more good discussion.
So first of all, how does one read a table? Simply looking at the final table is not reading the table or understanding it, in my opinion..it’s just looking at the table.
I think that a single season is a long time, especially for a new team that’s starting to play in a new way with a new coach, and different periods of the season can have differences that could prove to be important when looking for conclusions.
I like to break the season into 4 quarters of 9 games each. I separate the 1st game and the last game of the season from those to result into the following fragments:
Premiere game - 1st Quarter (9 games) - 2nd Quarter (9 games)
3rd Quarter (9 games) - 4th Quarter (9 games) - Last Game
This in turn creates two halves (hence the paragraph space between 2nd and 3rd quarter).
This subdivision helps in providing a more detailed look, and in observing progress or lack thereof through the season. This zooming in and out of the bigger picture enables an observer to understand information that the bare eye can’t perceive from looking at the final table, as we will see below.
The isolation of the first and last game is there for two reasons: First, to create equal Quarters in order to compare them more easily and on equal terms, and secondly to isolate the first game and the last game because they are special in that the first game is rarely reflecting on the side (look at United’s example, or Arsenal’s) and the last is usually after everything’s decided (well ok, unless you’ve asked a City/Utd fan last season, or a Chelsea/Arsenal/Spurs fan this season). Having these two special games separate makes it easy to include each in either half of the season to zoom out of the quarters and look at a bigger picture, or also to attach them to their adjacent Quarters. Ultimately they are there for symmetrical reasons and they provide flexibility in the analysis.
First Game: Loss to W.Brom 3-0 (A)
Attached to the next 9 games: W2 - D5 - L3 - 13-15(-2) - Pts11/30 (lost 63%)
1st Quarter: Games 2-10 (Aug26-Nov4)
W2 - D5 - L2 - 13-12 (+1) - Pts11/27 (lost 59% points)
Clean Sheets: 2 (2 Home)
Failed to Score: 2
Conceded 2+: 5
Top 6 teams: 4
2nd Quarter: Games 11-19 (Nov11-Dec26)
W4 - D2 - L3 - 15-11(+4) - Pts14/27 (lost 48% points)
Clean Sheets: 4 (3 Home, 1 Away)
Failed to Score: 1
Conceded 2+: 4
Top 6 teams: 2
1st Half of season Summary:
W6 - D7 - L6 - 28-26(+2) - Pts 25/57 (lost 56% points)
Clean Sheets: 6 (5 Home, 1 Away)
Failed to Score: 4
Conceded 2+: 10
3rd Quarter: Games 20-28 (Dec30-Mar2)
W5 - D2 - L2 - 25-8(+17) - Pts17/27 (lost 37% points)
Clean Sheets: 5 (3 Home, 2 Away)
Failed to Score: 1
Conceded 2+: 4
Top 6 teams: 3
4th Quarter: Games 29-37 (Mar10-May12)
W4 - D4 - L1 - 18-9(+9) - Pts16/27 (lost 40% points)
Clean Sheets: 4 (2 Home, 2 Away)
Failed to Score: 3
Conceded 2+: 3
Top 6 teams: 3
Last Game: Won vs QPR 1-0 (H)
Attached to previous 9 games: W5 - D4 - L1 - 19-9(+10) - Pts19/30 (lost 36.6%)
2nd Half of season Summary:
W10 - D6 - L3 - 44-17(+27) - Pts 36/57 (lost 36.8% points)
Clean Sheets: 10 (6 Home, 4 Away)
Failed to Score: 4
Conceded 2+: 7
As we can see from zooming in at the table, there are two very different halves of the season. The stat that highlights the difference at most is the percantage of points lost. In the first half of the season we have lost more than half the points maximum (56%), while in the second half the amount of points lost decreased drastically to 36.8%.
Further zooming in into Quarters, we can see how a progress from Quarter to Quarter is shaped:
The significance of retaining the progress of Quarter 3 in this last Quarter is highlighted when we zoom out and see how the last two Quarters (including the last game) combine for a very much improved 2nd half of the season:
56% of points maximum was lost in the first half of the season, while only 36.8% was lost in the second half (a whopping 20% difference). Half the amount of games lost (3 compared to 6), near double the amount of wins (10 compared to 6), a goal difference of +27 compared to a measly +2, near double the amount of clean sheets (10 compared to 6), are stats that highlight this progress as well.
So zooming in and out of the table shows us a gradual progress from Quarter to Quarter, but also shades two very different halves of our season. When we take the reasons observed in the Quarters’ progress, it can be seen that the return of Lucas and Carragher in defense, as well as the addition of Sturridge and Coutinho in late January, together with evolving the system through the season, have enabled a significant improvement.
Since our team next season (currently at least, and barring any unexpected bad surprises) includes the elements that resulted in that improvement (with the exception of Carragher, for which though I expect and hope to have a quality replacement), it is the minimum expected for next season, as i) a new preseason, ii) a further evolving of the system and the players playing together longer, as well as iii) young players maturing even more (Sterling and Wisdom in particular have gained great experience this season, and all young players will be a year older, closer and closer to peak or coming of age depending on which player you look at), and iv) further summer additions that should provide more depth and options, are all factors expected to provide further improvement.
So if we take this 2nd half of the season as a base, it would be interesting to compare it to the top 4 teams, as top 4 is the minimum target we could have next season. This can give us a better idea on how far off we currently are, as well as the areas of improvement that can be the catalyst in achieving that.
Liverpool’s 2nd Half of season (defined base for next season):
W10 - D6 - L3 - 44-17(+27) - Pts 36/57 (lost 36.8% points)
Clean Sheets: 10 (6 Home, 4 Away)
Failed to Score: 4
Conceded 2+: 7
Compared to top 4:
Utd’s 1st Half of Season Summary:
W15 - D1 - L3 - 48-28(+20) - Pts 46/57 (lost 19% points)
Clean Sheets: 3 (1 Home, 2 Away)
Conceded 2+: 9
Utd’s 2nd Half of Season Summary:
W13 - D4 - L2 - 39-15(+24) - Pts 43/57 (lost 24,5% points)
Clean Sheets: 10 (5 Home, 5 Away)
Conceded 2+: 3
City’s 1st Half of Season Summary:
W11 - D6 - L2 - 34-16(+18) - Pts 39/57 (lost 31,5% points)
Clean Sheets: 7 (6 Home, 4 Away)
Conceded 2+: 3
City’s 2nd Half of Season Summary:
W12 - D3 - L4 - 32-18(+14) - Pts 39/57 (lost 31,5% points)
Clean Sheets: 11 (6 Home, 5 Away)
Conceded 2+: 3
Chelsea’s 1st Half of Season Summary:
W11 - D5 - L3 - 39-18(+21) - Pts 38/57 (lost 33% points)
Clean Sheets: 8 (5 Home, 3 Away)
Conceded 2+: 4
Chelsea’s 2nd Half of Season Summary:
W11 - D4 - L4 - 36-21(+15) - Pts 37/57 (lost 35% points)
Clean Sheets: 7 (4 Home, 3 Away)
Conceded 2+: 7
Arsenal’s 1st Half of Season Summary:
W9 - D6 - L4 - 40-21(+19) - Pts 33/57 (lost 42% points)
Clean Sheets: 7 (3 Home, 4 Away)
Conceded 2+: 7
Arsenal’s 2nd Half of Season Summary:
W12 - D4 - L3 - 33-16(+17) - Pts 40/57 (lost 30% points)
Clean Sheets: 7 (2 Home, 5 Away)
Conceded 2+: 4
We can see that our 2nd half of the season (which is the half that includes all the parameters that we currently have, so can be used as a base), while not yet a match for 1st or truly a match for 2nd place, is really close to not just 4th place, but also 3rd place. I’d like to bring the following observations to the foreground, comparing our 2nd half to those two teams, Chelsea (3rd) and Arsenal (4th):
With these observations it becomes apparent that the amount of lost games is competitive enough, and wins are only marginally lower. It’s evidently about turning those draws into wins - the games vs West Ham and Reading that could and should have been won (games where we were unable to score despite getting about 25 goal attempts) highlight this last conclusion.
When we compare to the top two teams, the gap to City is not significantly bigger.
City’s wins are not much different than Chelsea’s (12 and 11 compared to our 10), and our losses average City’s two halves (our 3 being the average of their 2 in first half and 4 in 2nd half). There’s a total of 3 points gap in order to reach City’s ratio of 31.5% of points lost in either half (a very consistent team in both halves btw).
The gap from Utd is more than a season apart, as can be clearly seen by the figures. While we have conceded no more than them in total when the whole season is accounted, there’s a big gap that would take more than a season to reach. That’s only natural though, given how their team is the finished work (literally, with the sun of Fergie having finally set), and ours being the starting work, as well as being the youngest team in the league in age average - so our future’s ahead, while their future now has a question mark of how they’ll manage to retain all that has been achieved.
There is no way to know how much of their percentage these teams will retain next season, with and 3 of the 4 teams changing managers.
But we can see from this analysis that if the second half of the season is our given, to which we add in the summer and start the next season with that as a minimum, top 4 is definitely a very realistic minimum target.
Three areas where we certainly need to improve are:
Two things that will be a catalyst in achieving the 3 improvements above are, in my opinion:
To conclude, I think that the message of this season is that while the final result is disappointing, the signs at the table are clear that we have progressed massively and that we have set the foundations for getting back to the top.
The criteria with which we had the first half of the season figures do not exist any more, while the criteria with which we had the second half of the season figures are (at least until now) the ones that we will carry to the next season. With further improvement and more quality depth added being the two expectations to see, I am very positive for next season.
So that's FA parting gift to baconface? Not taking action against Evan's punching?
well i know everyone is posting about suarez, coutinho and centre half replacements etc. there is a position in which even though i dont think we need to worry about im gunna suggest someone for it anyway and that is left full back. well everyone always says we need an experienced left back for cover for enrique. Well there is a certain left back in which i was reminiscing about and watching old videos and that is JOHN ARNE RIISE. there are many reasons why he would be a good signing
2. not a complete dud
4.not getting much gametime anyway at fulham
and last but not least he was a former player who was addored by the club no.
so in my opinion we should definetly think about it because having already played for the club he would already know the requirements and passion you need to take this club forward. so tell me your thoughts and
Selling Suarez is not optional for LFC because he's a world class material and his actions were his own, they did not reflect the upbringing or values of LFC.
Luis Suarez is an indisciplined player who needs to be taken through the ropes of discipline, as well as learning respect for others.
I am a Liverpool fan, but of course I do not support his actions just because he wears our shirt.
I think the coaching staff need to remind him that he is at Anfield to play football and not to exhibit his ego.
Discipline and respect are 2 of the most important things on the pitch. (After all, this is what makes real Captains be Captains).
I feel his actions were a let-down because he did not behave like a real professional.
Real Professionals stop the opponent with "skill and stamina", not with unacceptable behavior or in this case rather," not with their teeth".
Suarez must simply face his punishment, learn from it and get on with his game.
The followings are some interesting stats that I found from EPLIndex.
- At the beginning of the season until January, our defence makes few errors that costs us points, Reina and Skrtel. After January, Rodgers use Carragher ahead of Skrtel brings a degree of stability to the defence. This is reason why experience and mentality is extremely important for a centreback. Probably something wrong with Reina and Skrtel.
- From EPLindex in January.
Please note that the error statistics is up until January only.
|Player||Mins Played||Error Lead to Shot||Error Lead to Goal||Total Errors||Mins Per Error|
- We should continue combination of Gerrard and Lucas together next season, rotating Allen, Shelvey and Henderson in between. Combination of them made most tackles compared to top teams in Europe. 161 tackles and 6.88 tackles per game with 2.7 aerial duel won per game. They were dispossed just by 1.3 per game. A truly key to Rodgers idea of possession towards the end of the season.
- Allen which have been teased by a lot of fans this season, probably due to the poor match against MU. He did in Liverpool what he did in Swansea. He is not a worse player but could be a better attacking player than before. He is better than Carrick that lose ball every 7 minutes, with 1.68m tall, he won 38% aerial duel and his tackle win obviously decreased because we have Lucas at the back with 81% final third pass. Read more
- Liverpool are 0% goal from counter with 23 shots. I felt Rodgers can try to put in more open counterattack using our striker again simply because it would be good to utilise their pace. Tiki taka requires building from the back but adding extra training on counterattack I believes would add extra threat in speed. Rodgers did try out counterattack at the pre-season and beginning of the season and I can see how threatening is our counterattack. He decided not to play counterattack later on. He turns back to his basic passing game. With addition of Sturridge and Coutinho, rather than just depends on Suarez at early of the season, counter attack could be useful. Suarez have 10 shots during counterattack but no goals. Sturridge should play regularly beside him and train counterattack in training ground.
3. Substitution impact
- There is a problem with depth when you looks at the quality on the bench this season compared to last season.
- In 12 games, we were losing by halftime and win 1, lose 7 when losing 1-0. Only 2 goals come from substitute. I can only say we were lacking the confidence and mentality. When we gets scored first, we will lose. We are not capable of making strong comeback. Fans normally ask why doesn't Rodgers make sub. But, will our sub be better than the starting line-up? MU and MC possessed quality bench players and even Moyes have good fringe players on bench but we have youth players on the bench.
- This is effect of removing substitutes impact (ignoring peripheral contribution)L Liverpool would drop by a place to 8th. MC is really dependent on substitutes since they have top players anywhere.
4. Chances and Goals
- This department undoubtedly shows tremendous progress over the season. Look at the graph trends.
Why have Liverpool FC fallen from grace after 1990s?-Fan’s view
Liverpool Football Club is one of the most successful English club as it has won 18 League titles, 7 FA cups, 8 League Cups, 5 European Cups and 3 UEFA Cups since it was founded in 1892. The club has played at Anfield stadium since its formation. The most successful period in Liverpool's history was under managers: Bill Shankly and Bob Paisley (1960s-80s) who led the club to 30 honours. But after the introduction of Premier League in 1992, LFC has not won a league title even though they’ve won other honours in the process. There are many reasons for this faltering; not utilising revenue, ownership issues, inconsistent managers and poor transfer dealings. These are discussed below.
Not utilising Revenue:
Some of the Liverpool fans blame the fact that Liverpool didn’t utilise the revenue earned previously from sponsorships and ticket sales to expand their stadium when the cost was low. Supporters have drawn comparisons with other “BIG” clubs like Manchester United and Arsenal who have utilised the commercial revenue from TV rights and thus have expanded/shifted their stadium. This has resulted in higher revenue earned in terms of ticket sales and better sponsorship deals. Anfield has 45276 seats whereas Manchester United’s Old Trafford has 75811 seats and Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium has 60361 seats. Since 2002 plans to replace Anfield have been in place but this was held back by former owners in 2007 who promised to start building the new stadium in 60 days but had trouble financing the estimated £500 million needed for new stadium because the club was bought with borrowed money and not the owners' capital, and interest rates were high. After the acquisition of Liverpool by Fenway Sports Group in October 2010 the question arose again whether Liverpool would leave Anfield. The owners preferred to stay at Anfield and plans to regenerate the stadium were announced after securing a £25m grant. Liverpool’s managing director Ian Ayre insisted that the planned redevelopment would enhance the club's spending power within the player transfer market. He also supported the notion that Manchester United and Arsenal gain bigger ground in terms of matchday revenue. As one of the twitter users @RichardMurphy91 tweeted “failure to keep up with the revenue generating advances made by others (eg man u) especially internationally”. LFC forum’s users: “Zonal Marked”; stated not making use of commercial revenues, “Red Trilogy” said “we failed to develop the stadium at a time when finances became ultra-key to success” and “Famous Seamus” had the same view.
Matchday Revenue 2011/2012
Ownership issues weren’t a major problem until 6 February 2007, when George Gillett and Tom Hicks assumed control of Liverpool F.C. in a deal worth a reported £470 million. The owners made “fake promises” as said by many Liverpool supporters. Hicks and Gillett stated that their foremost priority was gaining silverware, and vowed to start building a new stadium at Stanley Park within 60 days. As said before the stadium was never built. The biggest problem they faced was falling into debts. Upon arriving at Anfield, Hicks and Gillett made clear that they had purchased the club with no debt saddled on top. However, just a year on from the takeover, the co-owners had already agreed on loans, most notably with the Royal Bank of Scotland. In 2009 there were fears that the club could go bankrupt from the debt incurred by the loans from the bank, though the owners managed to refinance the deal for another year. But more than £200 million worth of debt had been piled on to the club.
The owners also never established a healthy relationship with the fans and the first manager in their regime, Rafael Benitez. Throughout their tenure the owners made indirect comments on the manager and demotivated him by saying that he wouldn’t get enough transfer funds as well as publicly stating that his position was in threat. As Benitez was the fans’ favourite this didn’t go down well with the fans as they also wanted to see funding in their Liverpool squad and owners fulfilling their promises. In October 2010, as part of a fans' campaign against the ownership, a video entitled Dear Mr Hicks was released virally via YouTube. It featured celebrity fans of the club giving their reasons why they wanted to see a change of ownership. On October 15, 2010, Hicks and Gillett lost ownership of Liverpool F.C to New England Sports Ventures (NESV), for a fee believed to be around £300 million. As @strtbrdsn on twitter replied to my account saying “we were financially outmuscled”, as on LFC’s official forum “2fast-T” blamed Hicks and Gillett for taking the club backwards and so did forum user “redfoot” and Robbie Westley, one of my interviewees had only one reason which was problematic reign of Hicks and Gillett who he said stopped the club’s progression.
Managerial changes over this time have been frequent, as there have been 9 managers throughout these 22 years compared to 4 managers in the 32 years before that. This has resulted in inconsistency as new managers bring new training methods, style of play and players. Liverpool has won 13 honours in this period but two managers have been particularly blamed for the downfall: Graeme Souness and Roy Hodgson. Souness took over Liverpool from 1991-1994 and won only one cup. His transfer dealings have been criticised by many for being the reason that Liverpool not performed well. This was the most popular view by many LFC supporters on forum/social networks. He never received the fans’ support and so was the case with Roy Hodgson as fans’ support form the basis of team spirit. Roy Hodgson took over LFC from 2010-2011 with his reign only lasting 6 months. He became so unpopular among LFC fans that whenever Liverpool played a match, fans chanted the name of another manager. His unpopularity, failed signings and poor style of play cost him his job.
Souness had a win percentage of 42.04 while Hodgson had a poor 41.94. These two have the worst record over the 22 years.
In the last 6 seasons Liverpool have had a downward trend in goals scored and goals conceded as shown in this chart:
This has resulted in loss of points in the league for LFC thus affecting their position and inability to win the league title. Most goals were scored in 08/09 season where Liverpool came second, the closest ever to winning a premier league title losing by just 4 points. After that they performed really poorly and last season for the first time ever LFC weren’t even able to score 50 goals in the league.
The biggest issue always has been poor transfer dealings. New players have mostly not lived up to expectations. Except for a few players, many new players have failed to establish themselves as first team players. Although LFC have spent £601m since introduction of Premier League and have failed to win a league title.
Some of these signings were made by Souness and Hodgson as well as recent manager Kenny Dalglish and most fans complained they were never able to replace the best players. Rather, they brought in average players who were never good enough for LFC like Paul Stewart, Dean Saunders, Paul Konchesky, Milan Jovanovich, Charlie Adam etc. This notion was supported by both Peter Young and Jack White who blamed the new signings on these managers. Some fans even suggest Souness destroyed the “Liverpool way”. Except for this, complaints have been made that there was never enough funding by LFC owners in the last few regimes compared to other clubs, such as Chelsea, who won their 3 league titles by spending a lot of money in the last 5-6 years. Similarly, Manchester city spent £703m to win their first title last year. This shows that you need to spend a lot of money to purchase star players but if money is well managed you can still succeed in winning league. The best examples for this are Arsenal and Manchester United.
Liverpool football club remain the second most successful English club but they have not won the league title for a very long period according to their standards. It will require a lot of hard work and patience if they have to get into Europe’s elite competition again (UEFA champions league). Brendan Rodgers (LFC’s current manager) has a big task on his hand right now. So, will Liverpool ever return to the summit of English football? Of course they will. Football dominance is never built to last forever and will always be shared in cycles. Manchester United had to wait 26 years for their turn and of course it is completely reliant on a combination of patient and supportive owners to work smartly in utilising the revenue and dealing with backroom issues, the right manager, buying the right players at the right time and that slice of good fortune to provide the catalyst to get you on your way.
1) Anfield Redevelopment’ 2012, Sky Sports, 16 October, accessed 5 April 2013, <http://www1.skysports.com/football/news/11669/8166706/Ian-Ayre-says-Anfield-redevelopment-will-enhance-Liverpool-s-transfer-budget
2) Bayley, J 2012, ‘How Liverpool FC became one of football’s biggest sleeping giants’, Think Football, 8 November, accessed 15 April 2013, <http://thinkfootball.co.uk/archives/6037>.
3) Conn, D 2010, ‘Tom Hicks and George Gillett take Liverpool further from new Anfield’, Guardian, 17 March, accessed 16 April 2013, <http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/blog/2010/mar/17/tom-hicks-george-gillett-liverpool-anfield>.
4) Edwards, J 2010, ‘Liverpool 'can show Tom Hicks and George Gillett lied' over loading debt onto club’, Dailymail, 10 October, accessed 16 April 2013, <http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-1318989/Liverpool-Tom-Hicks-George-Gillett-lied-loading-debt-club.html>.
5) http://forums.liverpoolfc.com/threads/332971-Why-have-Liverpool-F-C-fallen-from-grace-after-1990s/page4 “redfoot & 2fast-T” users
6) JOHN HENRY W ON THE STADIUM QUESTION’ 2012, Anfield Wrap, 15 June, accessed 9 April 2013, <http://www.theanfieldwrap.com/2012/06/john-w-henry-on-the-stadium-question/>.
7) Liverpool- An alternative financial plan’ 2010, Football Insights, 16 January, accessed 10 April 2013, <http://footballinsights.wordpress.com/2010/01/16/manchester-united-and-liverpool-an-alternative-financial-plan/>.
8) Stu 2013, ‘Stu's post on English Premier League’, blog post, 9 March 2013, accessed 9 March 2013, <http://sulia.com/channel/english-premier-league/f/2fb4f138-23c5-40eb-a449-806a5d488abf/?source=twitter>.
9) Volpi, M 2012, ‘Liverpool Walking Alone’, WhatCulture, 9 November, accessed 8 April 2013, <http://whatculture.com/sport/liverpool-walking-alone-what-has-happened-to-anfield.php>.
1) Interview conducted with school mate, Jack White on 20th March
2) Interview conducted with Peter Young, cricket mate on 17th March
3) Interview conducted with Robbie Westley, cricket mate on 17th March
 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_football_stadiums_in_England Date viewed: 5th april 2013
 http://www.theanfieldwrap.com/2012/06/john-w-henry-on-the-stadium-question/ Date Viewed:9th April
 http://footballinsights.wordpress.com/2010/01/16/manchester-united-and-liverpool-an-alternative-financial-plan/ Date Viewed: 10th April 2013
 http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/blog/2010/mar/17/tom-hicks-george-gillett-liverpool-anfield Date Viewed: 16th April
 http://whatculture.com/sport/liverpool-walking-alone-what-has-happened-to-anfield.php Date Viewed: 8th April
 Interview conducted with Robbie Westley 17th March
 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Liverpool_F.C._managers Date Viewed” 26th April
 Interview conducted with Peter Young and Jack White on 17th and 20th March respectively
Season’s over and like all fans we might as well jump into the speculations to pass time.
Players coming in or going out is to be expected, but to what extent. What should be expectations or what standard should we set in the coming season?
Pls join in this conversation guys…
First I am going to categorise the current squad at LFC on a personal base.
Reina, Johnson, Agger, Lucas, Stevie, Countinho, Sturridge & Suarez. I assume this group is SAFE
Suso, Borini, Enrique, Downing, Hendo, Allen & Skrtel . On shaky grounds
Jones, Shelvey, Carroll, Spearing & Coates; At High Risk, to be sold
Sterling, Ibe, Wisdom, Coady, Morgan, Kelly & Assaidi; Prospects, (could be utilised for cup games)
Looking at this after nbreaking down, I thought , wow, we actually don’t have much of a group to be competing at the top level for next season is it?
So then, can we actually expect a lot next season or realistically will it be possible for FSG to pump in that much cash to overhaul the squad overnight. It will take big money huh. Another debatable point is, suppose we sell off the all the players in the High Risk category and some from the shaky grounds group, from this cash how can we guarantee we would get better quality and not worst than what we already have? A chicken and egg situation
My simple suggestion would be to stick with all the players above. Just like giving a manager a longer term, we should do it with the players as well. An example of this would be JC, till Rafa moved him into the CB position he was virtually another fringe player.
Of course it will be for the best if we could add a couple more quality players, because if we hang on to all the players currently in our books, we will have a deep enough squad. However, the challenge will lie in the manager.
First, BR has to set a realistic target for the coming season. After that BR may have to work out 2 or 3 groups and work out 2 or 3 different strategies to suit each group. OPTIONS.! The different set of squad or mix and matching may work playing against so called ‘weaker’ opponents and cup games, keeping players fresh and active however.
My basic take is, players who are given a chance will be better prospects than newer, untried ones.
Chip in your thoughts folks..
It is a song by Adele but I am here to talk about Liverpool transfer.
1. Sergio Canos - the 16 year old Barcelona player which previously I have said as our first signing according to Spanish report and he was apparently spotted at Melwood according to a photo 10 hours ago. Latest news reported that we actually already signed him an hour ago.
2. Kolo Toure - He is a sensible transfer to me even though he is old.
Kolo Toure is one of the Invincibles of Arsenal. He is strong and obviously possessed sufficient amount of experience at age of 32. Even though he will demand high wages, he is a free transfer. An experience replacement for Carragher and also possess game reading ability like Carragher. The idea is simple for me. If we are going to sign him, probably 2 years contract, can provide more time for Rodgers to find long term replacement since Carragher announced his retirement suddenly at middle of the season. If we doesn't sign him who is available at free transfer, other clubs will be ready to cut our throat, demanding high transfer fee for their top centrebacks because we are desperate. Getting Toure not only will give us more time to find the right one but with more room for negotiation. I'm not writing off the possibility that Rodgers will get him as back-up together with another long term replacement. But, I believe that signing Toure first would bring advantage to the negotiation table if that happens.
3. Begovic - Stoke City goalkeeper. Sarajevo-based paper Dnevni Avaz report “that everything has been arranged and is waiting for a signature”. A good shot stopper. Some said Downing could be used as exchange which is possible since it is difficult to get deals for Downing. Stoke City have a lot of cleansheets this season and the strongest defensive team at beginning of the season.
In my opinion, however, this news is unlikely to happen unless Begovic willing to be back-up keeper replacing Jones. Begovic would have to fight with Reina for the spot. Reina will be the first choice even if we signed Begovic. I don't think Begovic is better than Reina in anyway and don't really think that Reina will be leaving for Barcelona. A goalkeeper career span is long so Reina probably will be staying for few more seasons.
4. Andy Carroll - 15m was said to agreed. Even though the loan deal stated 17m clause but 2m difference doesn't really matters it seems. Rodgers currently have Suarez, Sturridge and Borini. Probably, he felt there is no place for Carroll if he is back. If you put yourself in Carroll shoe, I believe Carroll would rather stay in West Ham than Liverpool. West Ham made Carroll as focal point, playing around him. If Carroll comes back to Liverpool, he would just be used sparingly ahead of Borini but behind Sturridge and Suarez. In view of future, West Ham would be much better choice than Liverpool. Big Sam appreciates him more than Rodgers. If you all thinks about losses, then thinks about salary that we are going to save. Sell him now is nothing different than loan him for another season or until his contract expires. Latest news: This Plan B gets injured for 4 months. He seems to be too injury prone.
Forgot some important ones the last time around, including two English gentlemen and a funky Italian.
1) Michael Owen and David Beckham
What a coincidence that two of the brightest stars England produced in the last two decades or so are calling time on their playing careers at almost the same time - but the path they took could not be more different.
While Beckham left the way he carried out his career - a flash of light, stardust and tributes from around the world of football for a truly international star - Owen's career fizzled out, almost unheralded, at the Premier League "outpost" of Stoke.
Yet, Owen was arguably the better player, at least at the beginning of his career. Remember the sensation he created when he made his debut at the World Cup at a tender age and scored a goal for the ages. He went on to have a glittering career at Liverpool and has etched his name among the legendary strikers who graced this club.
Some of his goals will be forever remembered for their quality and their importance.
But injuries and the upheavals that befall this club took their toll on Owen. He became surplus to requirements here under shifting managerial and ownership regimes, and moved out. Like Beckham, he too moved through a whole number of clubs, and continued to produce, but it was clear that from the time he left Liverpool, his career was on a gradual downtrend.
And this quiet man left quietly last weekend, almost lost in the shuffle of high-profile goodbyes. But kudos to the Stoke fans who, despite Owen not doing much at all at their club during his short stay, gave him a standing applause.
He will also be always applauded by the supporters of Liverpool for all he did for the club. YNWA, Michael.
As for Beckham, he parlayed his better-than-average skill into global fame. Chris Waddle is right to say that Beckham probably wouldn't make it into the Top 1000 players of all time in terms of ability, but he had that indefinable something that made him stand out. He wasn't a bad player, but his skills did not match his reach.
Yet, he shared something with Owen - humility. Beckham is such a nice guy that it is difficult to hate him despite his United connections!
For these two English icons . . .
Fare thee well
2) Roberto Mancini
He came, he stole the title from under United's nose - and he's gone. He turned Ferguson's perennial "noisy neighbours" into his worst nightmare, if only for one season. And that hair, Balotelli, Tevez . . . mamma mia!
I am going to say how I feel - from most of the blogs I have seen people have a very positive view of the season, I am sorry I dont.
This season has been a competitive disaster we have not been competitive in any competition. Yes we have advanced one more league position, yes we have scored more goals which is great but the truth is we didnt threaten to win any competition or to qualify for Europe. We only beat Spurs of the top six - For me that ranks this season as bad.
Okay - I write the season off as transition as we are told it is, so what should a transition year give me - the core of my team.
1) settled goalkeeper
2) settled defence with some cover
3) Midfield balanced between defence and flair
4) 4 Strikers and effective Plan B when its not working
Now this is what I observe
1) settled goalkeeper - no - it looks like we are in the market for a new one to bed in
2) settled defence with some cover - the mainstay of our defence the last three months retired and rumours of several of the experienced core leaving - which means a rebuild.
3) Midfield - looks good although I think its a little short of goals
4) 4 strikers and plan B - we have 2 proper strikers and 1 of them is banned at start of next season and may well be sold. As to Plan B - We are selling plan b as quickly as we can.
Looks to me like a rebuild at the back is being done this summer. My experience is that takes half a season to bed in. We are short at the front and so often this season we didnt have a plan B.
So unless we get lucky and the players click I figure on a similar season next year picking up as we head into the spring. I think we will finish higher because Everton will tail off, but I fear CL will be beyond us again.
Hope I am proved wrong
let me first condratulate JC23 for his loyalty and service to LFC. this out of the way,media reports are suggesting the capture of kolo toure from Mancity.
i cannot fathom why LFC should go in for Kolo. is it because he is a free transfer? For goodnnes sake,Kolo is not the type of player to sign at this stage of our rebuilding.He doesnt reflect the ambition we all have been made to believe in.I dont have any personal vendetta aginst kolo but he has seen his better days and we at LFC need players with real ambition and drive.
This signing if it is true sends the wrong signals about our forward march. Kolo is in the twilight of his career pleaaaaaase!!! what happened to the policy of young,hungry and talented players.?
So, the season's finally over (gutted!!!!), and the rumour mill is already at full pelt. Kolo Toure on a free (although what would his wage 'demands' be?). Papodopoulos for £12m. Andy Carroll supposedly to West Ham on the cheap, done and dusted (but have you noticed that nothing's been posted on the LFC website. Don't you think that they'd have broken with it by now?).
Yes, I'd take Kolo, for his experience, and Pap's could prove to be a snip, if he's as good as they say he is.
The thing is, we need to move fast but efficiently, so as not to get mugged.
People still want to come to Liverpool. We are still (rightly) seen as one of the biggest clubs in the world, but sometimes that sort of tag can be a burden, and bump up asking prices. By getting in early, we have time to negotiate. To sort out the wheat from the chaff.
We did well in the last transfer window. Let's hope it's same again this time, as 'close season' becomes 'open season'.
YNWA. Always. J4T96.x
I was just looking at the league tables from Italy and noticed that Fiorentina finished 4th ahead of heavyweights Roma and Inter Milan. Did some more searching and saw that former liverpool player Alberto Aquilani made 25 app and scored 7 goals and assisted in 6, not a bad tally.
I myself have liked the classy midfielder and was one of the few fans who was hoping that Kenny would keep the midfield trio of Meireles, Gerrard and Aquilani, but I'm glad the move back to Italy has worked out well for him. YNWA Alberto.
P.S - Maybe you could propogate Liverpool for your teammate Jovetic. Just a suggestion. lol
Just seen that Liverpool have agreed £15 million for Andy Carroll. Can't believe this. Let's bring back the big man and have a plan b. Or he could be the new Carra at the heart of the defence. There is doubt of the deal as Andy has said he wants to make it at Liverpool, so give a go, remember FA cup final, when he came on he turned the game. He can play with Luis and Sturridge. Luiis on the right, Sturridge on the left and Andy thru the middle, with the other two running off him, just a thought. Please feel free to leave your thoughts.
COME AND ENJOY A LUNCH AT THE LOCAL PIG N WHISTLE!
14TH JUNE, 2013. 12:05PM
Pig n Whistle - Riverside (Brisbane, Queensland. Australia)
This is the chance for all LFC Supporters to meet others who are either heading down to Melbourne to watch the Liverpool v Victory game or to meet others who will be watching the game at the Pig n Whistle. We will be playing the 2005 Champions League Final on the big screen too!
Follow the link below:
HOPE TO SEE YOU ALL THERE!!!
Just read n Sky that a deal has been agreed with West Ham for Andy Carroll for 12mill. What horrible negotiations from LFC. Are they so desperate to get rid of him that they are going to take a 23million loss?
I think this mistake may be as bad as the 35mill price payed for him on that deadline day. He is a player we could've used. Sturridge and Borini are both injury prone and we need 4 strikers. I've seen countless of crosses put into the box this season but no-one on the end of it. He proved he's a hard worker, cut out his drinking and focused on playing football so if those attributes dnt fit into LFC then clearly BR has a real bias against certain players.
Maybe he doesn't like looking up and talking to players hence all the small built acquisitions to walk behind him as his minions..... Rant over..
Is it true, just heard about Carrol9 of to West Ham on a permenant basis for 12mil?
If so shame he couldn't give a bigger impact and its better than giving him back to Newcastle at least haha, thought we could push for abit more than just 12mil since West hams original plan was after the loan for 17mil purchase.
Lets avoid the long talk and get to the point. The players that I will list below are only players that have been linked. The player that I will choose is just an opinion in which I believe can help us to success after an okay season.
All prices are according to transfermarkt.com
Let's start of with the departures:
Andy Carroll- £10 (rumored £17m)
Stewart Downing- Swap deal for Begovic or £7m
Jay Spearing £2m
Oussama Assaidi £5m
Jonjo Shelvey £5m
Pepe Reina £10m
Shelvey, Carroll and Downing have been disappointing. YES Carroll has been good with West Ham and YES Downing has had a much better season than the last but I feel it is still not good enough and he is not a player of a top 4 caliber. If we can get £9m for Shelvey (as rumored) then I would go with it. He just doesn't seem the type of player everybody has been so heeped about. Plus we could do with the cash for a player who has hardly even featured this season. There are better young players out there. I find it hard to see Spearing's future in Liverpool. Especially because he is turning 24. Assaidi looked a good signing but has barely had the chance to show his worthy. Brendan doesn't seem to be to fond of him anyway. Not too sure about him. Reina seems Barcelona bound and it doesn't look like he wants to stay here.
Asmir Begovic- £5m (Stoke will probably want £10m)
Christian Eriksen- £15m
Kolo Toure- Free
Kyriakos Papadopoulos- £17m (rumored to have agreed £12m with Shalke)
Cristian Tello- £10m
Danny Rose- £5m (Spurs will also probably want £10m
Begovic would be a superb replacement for Reina.. especailly with a price like that. (rumored to have already joined)
Eriksen would be a fantastic signing. Him, Gerrard and Coutinho would deliver the perfect service to our attackers
Kolo Toure has reportedly already joined Liverpool on a free. Great back up. Experience needed.
Papadopoulos would be phenomenal for Liverpool. A real rock at the back. One for the future and such a bright young prospect. Would partner Agger really well
Tello is just the player we need for the attack. Would mainly be a super sub and squad rotation player but he is also one for the future. Would be great on the RW to fill in for Suarez in the first 6 games with Sturridge in the center. If he adapts quickly and starts performing well, he may aswell become a crucial first team player
Brendan Rodgers seems to be heavily interested in England U21 left back Danny Rose. Seems like a bright young player. He's had a great season on loan at Sunderland. Would be a great understudy to Enrique. Maybe ROdgers can rotate them from time to time.
Benteke would add so much power up front. This season's 3rd top scorer for such a low team, with all due respect, and only at the age of 21. Seems like our kind of player. Would be a great squad rotation player and could fill in the gap of Suarez (6 more games of ban)
What we could look like:
Johnson Papa Agger Enrique
Sturridge Suarez Coutinho
Bench; Jones, Rose, Skrtel, Henderson, Allen, Tello, Benteke
Others: Kelly, Coates, Sterling, Suso, Borini
That is a squad full of youngsters, future starts and full of strength in debth. With Sir Alex leaving Man United, Moyes leaving Everton, Bale leaving Tottenham that leaves us mainly stronger than all three of these teams that finished above us this season. Which means top 4. Especially with this kind of team.
In the end you can never predict what the team will turn out to look like. I really do hope it turns out to be something like this. I believe at least 2, 3 of these players will join, hopefully.
Lets hope for the best next season.
the transfer rumour mill is starting to pick up speed by the day it looks like big Andy could be on his way to West Ham the rumour has it its a 15 millon pound deal i think we should be asking for more, if we are going to let players go this cheap then over teams will be trying to poach players away,why not keep Andy it gives the club a plan B . lets hope if this goes ahead then we dont lose Luis at the 11th hour like what happend with Torres,with lots of other players rumoured to be coming to Liverpool we must have won the lotto one minute Brenden has only got 20 millon to spend then we seem to be splashing the cash on this and that player, the press do love making a story just to sell there trash papers,o well as a true Liverpool supporter i will just seat back and see who comes and who goes lets hope its not to many going as we have a small squard so what is the point in selling one and just replacing with another one . YNWA JFT96