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Benitez v Klopp v Rodgers
In response to John, Si, Peter & Vishal, I think you all raised valid points. All three teams had great attacking threats to varying degrees. The reason I went for the Benitez side was because it was the only side which had a half decent defence and goalkeeper.
The Benitez side did have its flaws . I stand to be corrected but the reason they were runners up in 08/09 season was because they struggled to breakdown weaker teams. They had 10 or 11 draws that season, most of them coming after the “Fact” speech and to weaker opposition.
Klopps team when on form is very similar to the Rodgers team (remember the Dortmund game?). The difference being that Rodgers 13/14 team could turn out results more consistently. Klopps teams seem to stutter just as they go on a run.
In my opinion, this year will be Klopps best year. For the first time in many years Liverpool have decent squad depth. Injuries are unlikely to cause the team to stutter and with a decent 16 or 17 players instead of just a decent 11, the team will be able to stay fresh.
Shidaan(I think I need a shower, United fans shouldn’t spend this much time thinking about Liverpool)
Just a quick one on the teams of Klopp, Benitez and Rogers one think I think everyone can agree on, they would all finish behind Fergies United.
Benitez v Klopp is apples v oranges
This argument wondering who would beat whom between Klopps team & Benitezs’ is idiotic as it is like comparing apples and oranges. Think about it,in 6 seasons Benitezs’ net spend was 108m,Klopp after 3 seasons is (ballpark 20m).Bear in mind Rafas net spend was bigger then Ferguson & Wenger(combined)yet he never,ever,ever stopped whining about his lack of backing.Under FSG Benitez would last 6 months.
I think the better argument/discussion is how would Klopp do with Benitezs’ 08 team & how would Rafa do with this Klopp team. I have no doubt that Klopp would have won the league with Gerrard,Torres,Carra etc and would have been far better in the transfer market then Rafa. Dossena,Aurelio,Lucas,Kuyt,Insua,Aquilani,Ngog, Kyriagkos,Riera,Sissoko should never be allowed buy a red jersey in the club shop never mind be paid to do it.
Klopp gets a lot out of the current squad due to his man management skills something that even the most avid of Benitez fans would acknowledge he clearly lacks. Could you picture Klopp dropping Torres and Gerrard for an away match at Stoke in Feb or substituting Gerrard just after Wigan equalise with 10 mins to go(both of which Rafa actually did in Feb ’09).Klopp would have the ’08 team go for the jugular in all games.Think Rafa v Arsenal Dec ’08,Arsenal.down to 10 men and he keeps 2 holding midfielders on.
Lucas was the final Benitez player to leave Liverpool.
No guile,always passing sideways,couldn’t shoot,couldn’t beat a player and never created anything.If anything summed up Benitez as a coach it is that he signed Lucas
A sad story
The name Lazar became something inside joke between my wife and I after watching cinematic masterpiece “Your Highness”.
Needless to say, when Lazar Markovic joined Liverpool during Rodgers ill fated season I jumped at the opportunity to get the name Lazar on the back of that years kit. I figured at £20 mil someone at LFC did their homework and he would be at the club for years to come. Sheesh.
After spells in Portugal and in England at Hull I thought all was lost for the little Serbian. Deadline day came and went and while most Liverpool fans were distraught missing out on Lemar and Van Dijk, I was absolutely delighted that no one wanted our dark wizard Lazar.
Brian (Let’s hope he has a blinding first half a season) LFC
It’s not all doom and gloom
Thought I´d counter the doom and gloom narrative surrounding Arsenal at the moment by throwing out some rays of sunshine. In spite of an insipid off-season with poor results from the first three games this team is actually quite good. A back four of Bellerin, Kos, Mustafi and Kola is good. The front three of Ozil, Sanchez, and Laca is almost world-class.
When you look at it, we have a strong eleven with a great bench. The question is, can we get confidence flowing through the team? It´s not going to be easy, with 5 first team players asking to leave in the window (see David Ornstein´s summary). But, with a Euro´s on the horizon and the prospect of lucrative contracts, it´s in these players´ best interests to perform.
I for one, would love to see this team in a 433 which would balance our midfield and give the front three the freedom to do what they do best: create, interchange and score goals. We´re not going to win a title this season but we could be great to watch again.
I´m also eager to see our youngsters getting a runout in the Europa League.
Liam Gabriel Hoskins (You are my sunshine, my only sunshine) AFC
Early closure a blessing in disguise
Here’s my take on the matter of EPL transfer window closing earlier. To begin with, I concede that valid points are being made as to why EPL teams will be at a disadvantage. However, I find it significantly probable that it may prove to be a blessing in disguise. EPL teams are being asked exorbitant prices now anyways. But if they shut shop early, together with a more planned transfer strategy, they can come out as beneficiaries. The money flowing in is not going to end any time soon. So put yourself in the shoes of the selling side – ‘While I can ask for more money, I also know that I have a limited time (till the end of the EPL window). Otherwise I will be forced to sell to their ‘not so rich’ neighbors.’
This will force them to meet the EPL teams in the middle and sell for less compared to the prices they know they can get by dragging out the saga till the end, albeit still at a price higher than what others are willing to pay. But I think if the EPL teams play their cards right, it will be still quite less than what they pay now. I think this makes it fair because they earn considerably more too, so they are bound to pay more than their counterparts.
AM (try it out before you say ‘No’)
All these people complaining about the window closing 3 weeks earlier have obviously never heard the word no.
An all-time Premier League XI with a twist
I’m sure this has been done before (numerous times?) but my mates and I have had a go at an all time best Premier League 11, limiting ourselves to 1 player per team.
Whaddya think? We obviously blew our loads on the forward line/midfield.
GK – Friedel (Blackburn)
LB – Bale (Spurs)
CB – McGrath (Villa)
CB – Terry (Chelsea)
RB – Coleman (Everton)
CM – Toure (City)
CM – Gerrard (Liverpool)
AM – Le Tissier (Southampton)
LF – Henry (Arsenal)
CF – Shearer (Newcastle)
RF – Ronaldo (United)
James (loved footballers as smells) DGB
More deserved love for Wrighty
John Nicholson’s article about Ian Wright was fantastic. It’s a niche pleasure, but it was quite fun watching the comments rolling in on Twitter.
Wrighty’s age puts him between his fellow MOTD strikers, Gary Lineker and Alan Shearer; like Lineker, in some respects he was unfortunate that he didn’t get to play more of his career in the Premier League era; like Shearer, the fact he was already an established goalscorer when it started makes his prolific scoring in the PL all the more impressive. Also like Shearer, negative perceptions of his television presence for a while clouded the general perception of how good he was as a player. Indeed, there is very little footage widely available of him playing for Crystal Palace, even though he scored 117 goals and is the club’s third highest goalscorer ever.
Last year, this site let me write an FA Cup Final preview, from the perspective of Crystal Palace, based on what happened in the 1990 semi-final and final (and replay). I watched the games on Youtube, including this video, from French television, of the final:
With Manchester United leading 2-1, in the 69th minute, Crystal Palace make a substitution. Midfielder Phil Barber is withdrawn and Ian Wright comes on. Three minutes later, he receives the ball on the edge of the area, immediately makes two defenders look incredibly foolish and places a shot in the far corner.
This is one of the all-time great Wrighty moments. Like a lot of his moments, there is often a backstory that isn’t always familiar. In this instance, it was his first game back from a broken leg, and he announced his return with a sublime piece of skill and provoked a moment of utter, uninhibited joy.
Enjoy your weekend everyone.
Yet another top notch Football365 Love Letter To and yet another top notch series from F365.
I too love Wrighty. In fact I have always had a bit of a soft spot for The Arse and to me he is and always will be Mr Arsenal. Unashamedly so. If I cannot get to Anfield for whatever reason I will go anywhere for live football and back in the day I was standing on the Holte End when CPFC’s Brighty and Wrighty came to town. Even amongst such class as McGrath and Platt etc he stood out as being menacingly fast and clinical.
What Mr Nicholson didn’t mention was how cool he was too. I fondly recall an advert for a sportswear brand that happened to have one of my favourite tracks ‘Can I Kick It’ by A Tribe Called Quest and it showed him during a game. I think it was like a black and white Red Button Player Cam before Sky cottonned onto it and launched their pointless service. It was immensely cool and the speed of his movement and agility shone through.
Just imagine Wrighty and Henry together on a pitch. Cloggers like Terry would be forced into immediate retirement! Frightening…
Gregory Whitehead, LFC
BTW I have just found it on YT and that version is very much in colour and very much features other teams / players but in my head it was all about him and Arse and was black and white and him scoring a hat-trick against Ipswich; acrobatically…
Gregory Whitehead, LFC
And the hat-trick…
If it was even Ipswich…
Gregory Whitehead, LFC