Paul Merson is sad about Liverpool's atrocious season - and says it will get even worse at Stoke.Back to story
I've read most peoples comments now. Bring back King Kenny seems to be the cry. What!! People have short memories. King Kenny destroyed Liverpool. Didn't he walk out on us! We still haven't recovered from that period and that was twenty years ago. To be fair Souness did a great job. He broke up an aging squad and brought the kids through. fowler etc. After that the rest of the managers haven't been up to it. Then we get to Benitez. This might surprise a lot of people but Benitez is the most succesful Liverpool manager since Paisley. Benitez has also been more successful than Ferguson in their equivalent first 5 years of management. Ferguson was on the brink all those years ago. 1 game from relegation. This a quote i found on Wikipedia. "Many of Ferguson's signings did not reach the expectations of the fans, and the manager was reportedly on the verge of being sacked at the beginning of 1990", Now look. He has single handedly turned Uniteds fortunes around and made them one of biggest clubs in the world. It was in his 7th season when he won his first Premiership title. The fortunes of United back then are identical to what's happening to Liverpool now. Yes we can sack the manager. What then, do we give the next manager another 5 years to rebuild another team. Just look at all the previous failures. Fagan - coudn't emulate Paisley, Dalglish - did a runner, Souness - wasn't given enough time, Evans - less said the better. Evans & Houllier - disaster. Houllier - nearly. This is a pivotal time in the history of Liverpool. On the pitch and off. We have a world class manager in Benitez. Even Sir Alex Ferguson thinks so. He's even copied Benitez's approach in Europe recently. If we do sack Benitez, he'll be at Real Madrid within a year. That say's something about the man. The only real option is to let Benitez prove how good he really is.
Posted 00:24 16th January 2010
The squad is weaker now than when Rafa took over and a lot of his signings have been poor for example.. Dossena, Pennant, Josemi, Krompkamp, Barragan, Paletta, Leto, Babel, Plessis, El Zhar, Degen, Krgyiakos, Pellegrino, Gonzalez, Voronin, Nunez. He has made some good signings such as mascherano, reina, johnson and torres but what about the good signings who have since left the club such as, alonso, bellamy, keane, Luis Garcia, Crouch, Sissoko, etc What about the two left backs aurelio and insua are they really any better than Riise and Warnock who were allowed to leave the club for a combined total of 5.2 million. I reserve judgement on lucas and aquillani but 20 million for an injury prone player was an unnecessary risk. Kuyt bought for 9 million as a centre forward and now has to play on the right as he was not good enough. Babel isnt a winger, Riera wasnt good enough for Man city and i dont even want to mention N'gog. I hear that Liverpool cant afford to get rid of Rafa but how much will he cost Liverpool in the long run by keeping him. The situation is getting worse on a weekly basis and even though torres loves playing for Liverpool, he wont stay if he is not playing champions league every year. Man City, Spurs and Villa have all closed the gap and may well be in front of Liverpool at the end of the season leaving the real posibility of Liverpool finishing 7th and sweating on a place in the euro cup. Its time for Rafa to take a chance and ditch the ultra conservative tactics, only one holding midfielder and push Kuyt up top with benayoun on the right .
Posted 23:34 15th January 2010
For the attention of Rav Sandhu. Michael Fleming is a Scouser from St Josephs, Scotland Road Liverpool 3. Thats a 10 minute walk from the ground that is Anfield. Just for the record Rav where are you from mate?
Posted 16:47 15th January 2010
sack rafa and get hiddink, I am sure he is a magician and he'll magically turn lucas into yaya toure and kuyt into messi yay! hiddink would never join us not with our current owners and no funds, someone said rafa spent 40mil last summer, what rock have u been under? we paid 7mil for johnson, pompey owed us from crouch's sale and we paid 5mil for aquilani the rest depends on his performance. in total we spent less than 15 mil last summer. maybe we should have gotten Ahsley Young but then the owners would probably sell anfield's naming rights just to meet his wage demands. you get what u buy we have bought cheap players while Glen and alberto both come with lots of potential what we need right now is a player who is already tested and tried. I do not expect much from Maxi because we got him for free so it would be awesome if he can score 8 goals for us this season. let's picture the squad with say Arda Turan and moutinho I'm sure that would give the other players a lift but we cannot afford them so I'd say stop whinning about rafa and hope the yanks live up to their words and give him a sizeable transfer kitty next summer.
Posted 16:42 15th January 2010
T Fong, that "fact" joke was over last season when we beat you 4-1, the only reason you are still up there is because teams are still scared of your reputation. If a team turns up against man u they crumble. if you didnt have rooney you would be were we are now. funny the way rafa gets slated for his signings when fergusen pays 100m for berbatov, nani, anderson and valencia and nothing gets said.
Posted 16:40 15th January 2010
Rafa is playing mind games with the owners. His trying to prove how much liverpool need new players. He won't play the youth players (pacheco, darby, spearing etc) because they are good and play with hunger & desire. They would have beaten reading. He prefers to play Insua, Lucas and Kuyt (out of position) because he's making the point that he has to make do. All the while he does this Liverpool are falling further and further behind. His games will cost Liverpool massively.
Posted 16:35 15th January 2010
Some are saying that Mash wouldn't make the first team but thats garbage. Last year we had one of the best midfielder in xabi and mash, thats why one's now at Real and the other is being chased by Barca. What we needed to do was get some quality players who can move of the ball and feed of xabi's creativity. Instead we lost a world classs player, bought a full-back and replaced xabi in midfield with the worst midfielder on english football (including the lower leagues) in the form LUCAS LEIVA, the most un-brazilian brazilian footballer of all time... I reckon Rafa should now resign, replace him with Kenny til the summer, bring in Hiddink and give him the money he needs whether it be from investment of some sort of naming deal with the stadium. I would hate to see that happen but I love the club and don't waant to see it slide into obscurity like leeds or forest.
Posted 16:27 15th January 2010
if liverpool get rid of raffa they should do everything they can to get martin oniel hes the best manager around and i think he would like a real challenge,hes done great at villa but what are they ever going to win ,maybe a cup now and then or a wee run in europe,thanks from john steel
Posted 16:10 15th January 2010
The biggest condemnation of this version of Liverpool FC is that Merse is spot on on every word in his article. How many Liverpool fans can put their hand on their hearts and believe we're going to beat Stoke tomorrow. Not Many. Stoke !!.
Posted 16:10 15th January 2010
Rafa spuffed £40m on players this summer and wasted it. He's signed Aquilani for £20m when he could have picked Barry up for less, and had a much better player for it. £18m on a right back? Going into the season with one decent striker? What was he thinking? When you look at Downing (£12m), Ashley Young (£9m), Milner (£12m), Dunne (£5m) it shows that quality players are out there and that Liverpool have a manager who doesn't know how to work the transfer market.
Posted 16:07 15th January 2010
I agree with Merson, Liverpool are a world class team and have been for so many years. Every team has bad spells but this is just rediculous. We need to do something about the situation fast. Some people talk about us having to contend for 4th and go for the europa, i think we need to concentrate on staying in the top 10 forget the top 4 and the europa is our only possible option and i highly doubt we will be able to find the motivation to do that. One thing we definately need is some descent substitutes and reserves because we have learnt that Gerrard and Torres are highly injury prone and we have no-one good enough to step up and do the job. Lucas and N'Gog are good players but only when we are playing well and already destroying a team, we need players to influence that. We need some new players and for the current players to get motivated, maybe refuse to pay them until they play well and use that money to buy players, i think thats fair cause at the moment not one of the Liverpool squad members deserves to wear that shirt, us fans deserve as much effort given on the pitch as what the fans do to watch the team play, i suspect that with current results and team motivation some fans may give up hope because i certainly know that the team i support gives 120% effort, i think liverpool are maybe giving 10% if that. COME ON YOU REDS !!!!! =( Lets play football !!!!!!!!!!
Posted 16:05 15th January 2010
ithink liverpool will beat stoke and by a couple goals there luck has got to change soon,if they dont beat stoke they should get rid of the manager even though it would cost a fortune to get rid of him it will be worth it ieter the players theve got are crap or there not playing for the manager, and as paul merson said torres and gerard are out they should still have players good enough to beat stoke,liverpool only seem to play good against the top teams but now there not even doing that.thanks john steel
Posted 16:02 15th January 2010
Ok lets see what Rafa has done over 5 years. Do you remember his first season or just the highlights. Do you remember Burnley? Steven Gerrard got us out of his mess as he has done so often before with Rafa at the helm. Champions league final we were hammered. Yes it was the greatest final ever but luck played a big big part in that final. Like so many die hard reds who still live in 2005 you all need to wake up and realize that we have gone backwards. We are for a better word Garbage. We should of won it last season by a country mile but no Rafa started an argument for no reason whatsoever. He tried to play mind games with the greatest of them all. Sir Alex. I hate Man U. But unlike Rafa i am not a bad loser. "The referee was perfect". Remember that one against the bottom of the table Pompy. The man is a joke. I wonder if Rafa left just how many of his signings he would try to resign. None would be the answer. He got rid of the old school regime by getting rid of Steve Heighway in the academy. What a joke. This is the man who brought us the last crop of home grown world class players. Who on earth has been brought through the ranks since? I am not having he has had no money too spend. He has spent enough over the 5 years he has been here. We need to get back to basics from the top to the bottom. And i dont mean the tea lady. How many times have we struggled against so called inferior opposition. The answer is a lot over Rafas reign. I have got nothing against him as a man. But he is simply not good enough to take this club on to the next level FACT. We need to start buying hard players who can mix it up when the chips are down. Us along with Arsenal have too many players who coward out when needed. Even Man utd look dodgy without the tanned Ronaldo. Chelsea are going to be too strong for anyone. They are just too strong in every area of the park. Sorry Rafa not good enough. 5 year plan hey. Wheres the squad?
Posted 16:02 15th January 2010
Michael Fleming is a Man U fan!!!! Anyone who says sell Torres as he cant play more than 5 games in a row has to be a manc!!! As for the game v stoke I think we are in a situation where we have nothing to loose as our season is over already!! I think we will struggle to get any kind of result but I must keep faith and hope we can scrape a win! We actually played better passing and flowing football when both gerrard and torres were off the pitch! The only problem was that we had no goal threat or killer pass to end the game! As for only having 5 players that are any good I think thats nonsence and feel we need probably around 3 world class signings with a couple of squad players to get it right. Our defence is weak at left back and we miss riera's width who has been out all season. Kuyt doesnt provide anything from the right wing and Lucas needs to go with Masch and Alberto in the middle for this season at least. Only time will tell if Rafa leaves but dont forgert he got us closer to the premier than any other manager in recent times so people saying he isnt the man for the job may be a little blind!!
Posted 15:50 15th January 2010
Rafa should go he's simply destroyed the club. Aal the players he sold are doing great for their clubs; Bellamy, peter crouch, robie keane, pennant. pennant and bellamy were great wingers, and would ve been better than kuyt and benayoun on the wing. simple show what a bad manager he is.
Posted 15:50 15th January 2010
liverpool are so poor, its so funny watching thier downful
Posted 15:47 15th January 2010
I dont think Its too late for Rafa. Maxi mightnt be 100% ready but this is an emergency, he could start on the right and push Kuyt up front. Babel is hit or miss but hes worth the risk tomorrow. Merson is right Ngog wouldnt make the Stoke team so he certainly shouldnt be making Liverpools.
Posted 15:44 15th January 2010
Brothers, Sisters, Liverpool fans, Please hear me now for like you I am looking anxiously at the screens and waiting for that message to appear: ¿LFC Statement: Rafa Benitez Sacked¿. This would be a mistake for one basic reason: the American owners would have successfully deflected attention from the real issue haunting our beloved club: their own broken promises and financial mismanagement (huge debt, no new stadium, no funds for transfers). The argument that I¿ve seen most in the media by ¿legends¿, fans and even Torres today, is that the team lacks quality. I agree with this. But my challenge to all those who think this is Rafa¿s fault is simply ¿Look at the NET money he¿s been given you IDIOTS!¿ Those that say he¿s spent millions are true ¿ but his NET spend is a fraction of other clubs. Klinnsman, Souness, Whelan, and all these others with the own agenda¿s I have one question for you - show me who you would have brought in with a net £0m? Because that¿s what it comes down to and for proof you just need to look at the players in squad today. World Class: Reina, Johnson, Carra, Masch, Kuyt (you might hate him but you¿d still pick him), Gerrard, Torres. The most he¿s spent on these has been Torres - £21m (who is now worth more than £60m). Now let¿s look at the one¿s everyone¿s criticising. Lucas, Voronin, Degen, Ngog, Insua. I agree, they¿re not good enough. But the key question is how much did he have to spend on THESE players? Degen, Voronin (£0m ¿ free), Ngog (something stupid like £1m). In fact, the most expensive was Lucas who was about £6m. So, when you look at Lucas and get that disappointed feeling, all you¿re doing is saying Lucas is not a world-class player. Well WAKE UP ¿ what did you expect? Did you really think spending £6m would get us someone with the same ability as Xabi? The problem here is not Rafa¿s selection but his funds. Why have so many people forgotten the basics: YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR.
Posted 15:40 15th January 2010
It all boils down to a combination of four things. Bad ownership, bad managment, rubbish signings and no heart. Out of our whole squad only Gerrard, Torres, Masch, Reina and Carra have enough quality to win a prem title. Lucas replacing alsonso will never work and ngog would be more at home in league 1. We need a whole reshuffle, spending huge amounts of money is not the liverpool way but at the this moment in time its wot needs doin to win. I lost faith in rafa immediatly due to his rotation scheme and signing rubbish players who arent fit to wear the shirt. He needs to be gone along with the owners. Forget the new stadium also we love Anfield and want to see another batch of quality players performing there.
Posted 15:38 15th January 2010
i cannot believe Benitez is still manager of our great club.We will never win the league under him absolutely no way i think Gerrard and Carragher are feed up with his defensive and conservative style of play.we need to get creative players in like Wenger does at Arsenal.If Ryan Babel was an Arsenal player he would be one of the best players around....Benitez can not develop player into the finished article Simple As...He must go....We are in a bad situation...no youth players coming through...no money....no future ..Good luck
Posted 15:29 15th January 2010