Somebody mentions Paul Scholes and everybody writes in with those quotes from Zidane etc. Dull dull dull. We've ignored them. There's plenty more to enjoy here...
It does seem logical that the best thing to do with the best players is to play them from the start, when they have the most time to make an impact, rather than the last 15 minutes...
If you have anything to say on any subject, mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
This Could Be Their Year
On the back of Luis Suarez signing a new 5-year, 200k-a-year contract I think it's time for Liverpool FC and their fans to celebrate. Liverpool's league position should surprise no one. We are second in the league and we deserve to be there. Since the start of 2013 Liverpool have been playing top 4 football.
Rodgers style of management is beginning to pay huge dividends. His ability to improve first teamers such as Henderson and Enrique, combined with the seamless transition of youngsters into the first team is something to be admired. Raheem Sterling's coming of age at White Heart Lane and the joy of watching Jon Flanagan's face after he scored his goal is enough to make even the most Grinchy United fans heart grow 3 sizes.
Any other season watching Gerrard grab his hamstring was enough to send every Liverpool fan across the globe to grab for a pint of the strongest. This season however, not only can Liverpool cope without Gerrard, the team looks faster and more dynamic without him.
Pundits have commented that we do not have the squad to compete for the title. So far this season Liverpool have been without the services of Suarez, Gerrard, Agger, Coutinho, Enrique, Sturridge, and Glenn Johnson at one point in time or another and are still second in the league. Without the distraction of Europe, Liverpool have more time to recover between games and less opportunities to have someone injured.
Liverpool's title chances will be based on business done over the January transfer market. Tying down Suarez to a 5-year contract is a massive boost when trying to bring players in. Being in the league position we are in, with our best player committed makes Liverpool a very attractive option.
A mailer commented that "Liverpool haven't won sh*t yet". This may be true but the way things are going it's an appropriate time for LFC fans to get a bit penisy, For this year may finally be our year.
Brian (Let's start now shall we? TOP OF THE LEAGUE HAVIN A LAUGH) LFC
p.s. You know Suarez's new contract must contain a minimum 80 mil buyout clause so its win-win for Liverpool any way you look at it
...With regard the lunchtime news of Luis Suarez signing a new 'long-term' contract, the optimist in me screams, "We are planning for the future and big names will follow."
Unfortunately, the realist - and also cynic - in me accepts that this means Liverpool are ensuring they get big money (£65m plus) for their prized asset in the summer when Real come calling.
Wishing you all a Merry Christmas.
David Whitby, LFC
Can West Ham Cause Another Upset?
It's Christmas, so we can afford to get a little carried away, right? Sherry can be pretty lethal if you forget it's meant to be drunk by the thimbleful and not the pint. Let's imagine for a moment Allerdici forgets Sir Alex is no longer in charge and rather than instruct his team to roll over and have their belly tickled, The Irons go for it. Given there's no incentive of a nice bottle of Claret on offer he orders them to attack and give them a game...and they win!
Who will then stand a better chance of seeing beyond Christmas? The turkey on the farm or 'Moyesiah'?
My money's on the turkey...and not the angry, ginger one from Scotchland.
Gregory Whitehead, LFC
Why? Here's Why
Why would De Boer come to Tottenham? For the same reason a lot of players come to Tottenham: a decent wage and a chance to test themselves in the Premier League with one of the bigger clubs that has a decent outside chance of snatching Champions League spot.
Hugo Lloris left regular Champions League campaigns with Lyon to come to Spurs who were only in the Europa League. Lewis Holtby left Schalke when they were IN the Champions League to come to Europa League Spurs, as did Jan Vertonghen and Christian Eriksen of Ajax (who does De Boer manage again?).
As for managers not wanting to work with "sack happy" Daniel Levy, short managerial stints are very much the norm in the modern game and I doubt Spurs stand out in that regard. In fact there are probably a lot of managers in Spain and Italy who would be amazed at staying with the same club for four years, as Harry Redknapp did with Spurs.
Spurs are obviously not one of the top clubs, but there are only so many of those to go around. Tottenham are still a very attractive proposition for a heck of a lot of managers and players alike.
Edward, THFC, London
Interesting mail from Guy S this morning who states that: "I also think (fans) deserve to get any abuse they are happy to give, given back and then some". This raises an interesting moral dilemma for your readers (which due to the absence of a weekend mailbox, will surely go down as the biggest cliffhanger in mailbox history!). Last weekend a so-called "fan" invaded the pitch and punched Portuguese Beþiktaþ player Fernandes in the head (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5NZzcg9qycg).
A melee ensued in which half the players surrounded the hooligan and Fernandes' compatriot Hugo Almeida appeared to stamp on the pitch invader (great spot by the ref by the way). Almeida was given a red card, rightly in my opinion, for an over-aggressive action on a man who was already lying on the ground surrounded by ten others. However, many people are insisting that it was a ridiculous decision by the referee as some crazy guy had entered the field of play and punched his friend and compatriot in the head, and therefore deserved everything he had coming to him. In Almeida's defence, there was plenty of argy-bargy going on and a couple of other players appeared to also put the boot in, though of course two wrongs do not make a right.
So the question is, does "any abuse" include physical abuse? Forgot the above situation - because the guy was on the floor when Almeida stamped on him - and ask yourself this: If a crazy fan punches you in the head do or your team mates have the right to fight back?
Jamie Bedwell, Cheltenhamshire
Message For Korky
Just a few points in response to Korky's mail about Spurs.
*Dembele isn't a creative midfielder.
*Soldado scores most of his goals from crosses, Spurs playing high up the pitch doesn't prevent us from crossing the ball. You should have mentioned inverted wingers if you wanted your point to be correct.
*Townsend will never be close to Bale's level.
*I did enjoy your cliche about Sandro adding steel to the midfield though so you can take heart from that.
Happy Christmas Korky.
I'm counting the days. I'm counting the sleeps. I'm hoping the man in charge has got his list and he's checked it twice. It's the most wonderful time of the year...
Oh how I have missed the Transfer Blog!
Alan, LFC, Abdn
Looks Like A Good'un
I began my Christmas XI and got caught (and subsequently bollocked) by my superior and had to quit after one name.
GK - Pavel (makin a list) Srnicek'n it twice
Imagine how good the rest would have been?
While I like Spence's question, I don't think his choice of Van Persie is a particularly good one. Firstly RvP was never a one-club man like Le Tiss, given that he spent three years at Feyenord before he came to England (where, by the way, he also won the UEFA cup). Secondly, I think the suggestion that United supporters won't 'hold him up to much' is quite frankly ludicrous - the guy was the major factor behind a league title (reclaimed at the expense of Manchester City, no less), so even if he never kicked a ball for the team again I think it's fair to say he'll be held in the highest of esteem by United fans.
A better 'respect or medals' choice might be someone like, oh I don't know, Sol Campbell? One league cup at Spurs over a decade, but he turned down the chance to be a one-club man and joined his teams' arch-rivals for more money and the chance of more trophies. But even then, I suspect that although he finds himself hated by Spurs fans and facing sheer indifference from most neutrals, he'd still be lauded by the Arsenal supporters any time he turned up at the Emirates. Carlos Tevez, perhaps? Loathed by almost everyone he's ever played for, but won a bucketload.
I realise now I haven't actually answered the question. I think I'm going to cheat and say that, as with most things, it's probably best to be Paul Scholes - respect AND medals.