"Birthday to you, birthday to you, birthday to you, birthday dear Fernando, birthday to you". I wonder if that's what Fernando Torres sang to himself on Saturday when he turned 26.
The eagle-eyed amongst you will have spotted the distinct lack of "Happy" and keen Liverpool observers will not be remotely surprised.
Apart from still being in the latter stages of Europe's secondary competition, just what is there for the Spanish striker or anybody else at the club and their magnificent supporters to be upbeat about? Would The Kop really be jubilant if their team won the Europa League but finished outside the top four?
That question in itself underlines how far this once mighty club has fallen. To be clinging forlornly at the hope of being the fourth best team in the land at the end of the season is a quite scary realignment of ambition. The fact that it now looks increasingly unlikely with Rafa Benitez admitting Liverpool are now relying on other clubs slipping up, would have been unthinkable at one time, even during Rafa's reign.
Manchester United are closing in on the right to be recognised as champions of England more times than anyone else. Sir Alex hasn't so much as knocked Liverpool off their perch; he has absolutely stuffed the famous Liver Bird. The two clubs are currently level on 18 league titles apiece but one of them is going forwards and the other backwards.
Would The Kop really be jubilant if their team won the Europa League but finished outside the top four? That question in itself underlines how far this once mighty club has fallen.
Quotes of the week
Perhaps the most frightening aspect for any Liverpool fan is there would not appear to be even a glimmer of hope. Normally clubs sack the manager if results are not acceptable. Apparently Liverpool cannot afford to do this because of a clause in Benitez contract means they would have to pay him up in full.
Rafa himself has told me on numerous occasions privately that he loves the club and would never walk away. Which ever way you look at it, he's going nowhere.
Investors are not exactly falling over themselves to put money into a club currently controlled by two warring owners, who a large number of the supporters blame for the current plight. Hence there is very little money for new signings and the club is unable to attract the calibre of player it once was. The nightmare scenario for The Koppites is that their star players decide they can't hang around.
Richard Smith says...
Kajaer, Augero, Villa, Torres, Gerrard, Mata, Turan, Tawio, Johnson, Mascherano, Agger, Reina - And these are not top players??? The fact is if Liverpool have the funds the players will be / would have already been bought. I am quite sure you will see 4 top players being bought this summer regardless of champiions league qualification. Stop bickering amongst yourselves its pointless.
Posted 13:15 25th March 2010
A Norman says...
Lucas Madden you're an example of a typically bitter scouser. Just accept you got beat by a better team & your club is going backwards. Don't harp on about when Fergie leaves because he is still there winning things. And don't think the Utd hierarchy havent made contingency plans. Don't worry about the media ripping us to shreds either - they've tried that for years but we've got to much character, fight & will to win to let it happen. Our players stick around to (giggs, scholes, neville) because they love the club & what it stands for. We're just a bigger club - get over it!
Posted 12:19 25th March 2010
Gareth Hardy says...
My brilliant wife assures me (as a liverpool fan) that man utd are all about alex ferguson, and I have to agree. If you look at their team on paper season after season, it looks distinctly average (fletcher, o'shea, park)xcept of 1 or 2 star players like ronaldo or rooney. Yet ferguson moulds them into a championship winning side year after year. When he eventually does call it a day, united will slump! After all, who else can even match what ferguson has achieved! The trouble as a liverpool fan is, we're not equipped on or off the pitch to reclaim our rightful place on top of the perch once united crumble!
Posted 10:21 25th March 2010
Rashel Miah says...
look you liverpools only defence is to what hapened in the past. y dont you look in the mirror and face the reality that you arnt up to scratch anymore. just watch SAF and watch united and then you will see how a true elite club works and its not all about the past its about the present and the future. then u will definetly face reality and do the right thing and sack benitez and u might just have the callibre to compete with everton and co. to be the best mid table club in english football and that wil be an achieivement for liverpoool.
Posted 10:14 25th March 2010
John Lawlor says...
I'm a proud Liverpool supporter and lets get it straight, this year has been nothing short of a disaster for a number of reasons, such as long injuries to Torres, Gerrard's lack of any form and key squad departures, mainly Xabi Alonso and Sami Hyypia. When our team plays we look nervous, there's a fear right through the spine which is causing our 8-1-1 formation at times. We don't need 2 defensive midfielders in our team. Aquilani could provide the spark but to heap pressure on him now is unfair, its not his fault the team is so poor. Its a case of hoping for the best for the last 7 games of the season, next year needs a clear out, too many squad players wouldn't get into Arsenal's,Manchester United's or Chelsea's 5th teams. WE NEED MASSIVE INVESTMENT!
Posted 09:55 25th March 2010
Chris Chau says...
Just a quick reminder of some FACTS to every pathetic Liverpool fan - Yes, maybe ManUtd did spend more than that Liverpool did in the past 1-2 decades. But if we compare the NET INPUT among the "Big4", according to TRANSFER LEAGUE (just google it please), from the most to the least it goes like Chelsea, Liverpool, ManUtd, Arsenal. Liverpool fans should do some research like Benitez did last year, before saying something like "ManUtd have spent more than Liverpool" to make us laugh. Above all, I think it is worth to point out that, even if the spending/input of ManUtd doubles that of Liverpool, they perfectly deserve. Everyone knows that ManUtd are making significantly more money than Liverpool because of a broader fan base. AND MOST IMPORTANTLY MANUTD ARE JUST SPENDING WHAT THEY HAVE WON. BUT WHAT DID LIVERPOOL WIN? Compared to United it's nothing. I can't understand why you are assuming Liverpool can spend as much as ManUtd can. We are not at the same LEVEL!!! I fully support FIFA to approve the law which prevents clubs like Real Madrid, ManCity, Chelsea and Liverpool from spending the money that exceeds their earnings in such an unfair manner!!!!!! United for the Treble, Everton for the 7th, and Liverpool for the 8th lolz¡K.
Posted 09:14 25th March 2010
Darren Kearney says...
I am a Manchester United fan all of my life i'm 36 this year and my first memory of watching United was the 79 cup final sitting on my dads knee as Alan Sunderland scored the winner for Arsenal in a amazing game well that was that i was hooked.So as i sit here reading all the comments from the bitter Liverpool fans i recall being a United fan in the 80's when we won a few FA cups and i took serious stick from the gloating Liverpool fans who conviently forget the high and mighty way they carried on when they were winning well the shoe is on the other foot now Fergie fulfilled his promise to knock liverpool of their perch and he is the most decorated manager in English history more than the great Matt Busby, Bill shankley Bob Paisley ect...So apart from the so called United fans who jumped on the bandwagon (there's a few i know) but Chelsea have theirs and Blackburn in 95 had their own i think we true United fans have the right to Enjoy the riches Sir Alex has brought and hopefully will continue to bring in the future.
Posted 08:34 25th March 2010
James Howieson says...
only when a owner runs the club as a football club and not a buissness,will all club's be in a possitive way.these people buy a football club and expect a yearly profit for there investment.you can only improve your club or any buissness by investing in it's future.a quick profit does not come from running a football club,it takes year's of time and continued investment in player's and infrastucture.
Posted 08:08 25th March 2010
Tony Hennigan says...
Liverpool have done it in the past and the pots are in the cupboard FACT end of. Back in the seventies and eighties utd were a very average team with loads of money and loads of useless managers FACT. At that time I can remember going to o/t and wathched the pool stuff utd 0-3 on boxing day, how easy, and that was the norm. Utd hardly never carried any threat and hardly ever finished in the top half of the league, our biggest threat came from the likes of Arsenal, Leeds, Notts Forrest, Aston Villa, but never utd. What I am saying is every dog has its day, utd enjoy yours as you are going through a great period in your history but this will NOT last forever FACT. This time several months ago we were talking about a great Liverpool win at o/t 1-4 and now its all doome and gloom, history will repeat it self FACT.
Posted 05:29 25th March 2010
Mister Blister says...
Lucas Madden has just written the longest sentence in history! Amazing use of punctuation!
Posted 22:21 24th March 2010
Don Carrol says...
the future looks bleak for LFC, they will go the way of Everton, Spurs, Villa etc. A team a little better than the mid-table average and finishing 4th is the best they can hope for, but even that will be difficult for them in the coming seasons. The top 4 for the forseeable future will be Man U, Man City, Arsenal and Chelsea. Liverpool will be doing well to make the CL again at any stage during the next 5 years.
Posted 20:11 24th March 2010
Mark B says...
After reading all the comments after a long day at work......I dont understand why Liverpool fans are defending their Team. Teams to watch out for before Liverpool.....= Chelsea, Man City , Arsenal and maybe even Spurs after the brazilian they captured yesterday. Manchester United has been representing English football now for the last 12 or so years now. UNITED are the number 1.....i know it might hurt people to say that.....but fergie quoted that he'd love to knock Liverpool of their perch....he's actually done it already but because people are talking about figures ....it wont be noticed until he collects his 19th League title.......FERGIE IS THE BEST BRITISH MANAGER EVER.....AND THATS A FACT RAFA......Its unfortunate that Rafa, Wenger and Ancellotti....have to manage whilst Ferguson is still around, or they'd be better managers.......who next for fergie.....I honestly believe it will be MOURINHO...he would love the challenge of carrying on Sir Matt and then Sir Alex's philosophy of staying a cut above the rest......I know my comments will not suit everybody but hey.....WHO THE CAP FITS, WEAR IT ....!!!!
Posted 18:22 24th March 2010
Gav Cooke says...
Hand on heart i really wish that Liverpool don't lose any of their So called star players. Then when over the next two, three years they still continue to decline they cant blame it on anything else other-than themselves. I mean seriously alot is said about glory supporters but LFC defo don't have any of them do they lol, but at least all our fans have one voice even if its the wrong one at times... you guys either cant remove your blinkers from the past and continue to only see the team you once had. or spend all your energy directing it in the wrong areas. Rafa is a joke obviously but how can the guy run a club the way the fans want him to. when every fan wants something different.
Posted 18:17 24th March 2010
Luke Elston says...
Lucas Madden.....calm down calm down.Manchester United will demise once ferguson leaves?! Get real. Ferguson has another 5 years or so managing our great club, and when he leaves he will leave a legacy. That winning mentality which is instilled in the players, the back room staff, and everyone connected with the club. We have the infrastructure, better and bigger stadium, more revenue, more fans (was it 333 million worldwide?). I can only put your deluded comment down to bitters and jealousy. We are better now, and always will be. Liverpool, like ourselves, have a great history, but then again so have teams like wolves, west ham, everton etc. But you havn't won the league since the ice age. Man utd guarentee trophies every year. Torres is an amazing player which is why united will buy him in the summer when liverpool miss out on champs league football. He wants to win trophies. United can guarentee that, the only thing liverpool can guarantee is mediocrity, and at best the carling cup. You keep believing that man utd will one day go to ruin, in the meantime we will keep winning trophies. Prooving we are and always will be a bigger and better team than liverpool!
Posted 18:14 24th March 2010
Gav Cooke says...
FACT! the only reason UNITED fans get obsessed with Liverpool FC is Because we are learning from your mistakes... we will stand by our team NO MATTER what just like we have in the past and will if its ever needed in the future. We keep pace with whats happening with your club so we never make the same mistakes with ours. We are UNITED good or bad. can you say the same?
Posted 18:00 24th March 2010
Charles Sheridan says...
I'll never forget the end of last season when Liverpools club captain Steven Gerrard was doing a press conference and during that press conference he was quoted as saying "when we win the Premier league next season" I thought how arrogant is he given the competition ahead of Liverpool. I thinks it's this mentality going into this season that has bitten liverpool on their scouse backsides. They'll be lucky to finish 5th this season. Manchester united haven't had the best of seasons this year but we're looking strong to finish on top of the pile and claim a well desereved 4th title in four years. Next season Liverpool try starting the new campaign WITHOUT ranting rafa and an arrogant mentality!!
Posted 17:04 24th March 2010
Martin Amis says...
To Phillip Battison "my one big beef with SAF is his conduct, his ungentlemanliness, his foul language and foul temper, when so many of the foreign managers are polite, dignified, and graceful in defeat. " Can you please explain to me Torres' reaction to the Penalty at OT? Was he dignified and polite? Was he graceful? Is he foreign? Put down the stone, and get back in your glass house.
Posted 16:56 24th March 2010
Matt Yelwac says...
Some of the comments on here are way off the mark. To say Man United supporters are obesessed with Liverpool is the most backward, nonsensical, contradictory statement I've seen in a long time. Pot calling the kettle black, one thinks.
Posted 16:50 24th March 2010
Iain Mcnabb says...
Lucas M. - you are deluded. Liverpool are not having a 'bad season' they appear to be in terminal decline, with the nucleus of their side being the only reason they are not falling further. They have the best 'spine' of any premiership side (Reina, Carragher, Gerard and Torres) yet the rest of the side/squad is of relegation standard. The Manager appears clueness or just disinterested, and the owners are only there to make money. The salvation for Liverpool will not come next season, as their problems are too deep-rooted, and for Liverpool fans to hold the fact that Ferguson will soon retire as a way out of their current problems speaks volumes for their lack of ambition and desire. Sorry Liverpool fans but the future is bleak, I confidently predict that the 'spine' of your side will leave or retire within 18 months, and you will be looking forward to a local derby against Tranmere!
Posted 16:43 24th March 2010
Jack Toman says...
id rather walk alone
Posted 16:08 24th March 2010