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Rafa or Klopp
To the people wanting Rafa back, are you crazy?
Klopp is not perfect but their is not a better manager out there we can realstically expect to manage us, and while I dare not mention ‘net spend’ the fact what we spend compared to there teams that are expected to challenge is minimal it is unrealistic to suggest the good days will ever be back, fact is we cannot compete and if we get top 4 then that is a good season.
Rafa gave us great memories, but lets remember his big two wins in CL and Fa Cup were more to do with Gerrard. He messed up big time in first half against AC Milan by not playing Hamann, and while it was salvaged it was more to do with Gerrard then it was him. And again in the FA Cup Final against West Ham it was again Gerrards brilliance that got us that win, not Rafa.
I love him for the memories but lets not get too carried away, he made a lot of awful signings, played some dull dull football and is completely overrated by us Liverpool fans.
Anyone wanting Rafa back needs to have a word with themselves.
RJ (KLOPP OUT, BIG SAM IN FOR A LAUGH)
…Reading Gregory Whitehead’s letter I was unsure if he was speaking about Klopp or Benitez! Klopp’s sides play out awful games against defensive teams just as Benitez’s did while saving their best work for the big guns. Their similarities don’t end there though. Both took over a struggling team with mostly rubbish in the squad. Both made domestic and European finals in their first season. Both then found a formula to improve their league positions. Both will ultimately fail at what they were hired to do.
The problem Liverpool have is not their managers (except Hodgson) but the clowns who run the transfers. As per the recent squad value article on F365, if Liverpool had sign Van Dijk they would have a squad more expensive than Real Madrid’s! I know which squad I’d rather have if given the choice. Liverpool have lots of money to spend but they actively choose to buy mediocre players with it and then sell these players at a loss to be replaced by more mediocre players. The list of dross that the club has bought in the last 10 years alone is too long to type out but my favourite example of their ineptitude is when the scouts went to watch Belgium play. They saw 3 strikers that day and decided that Origi and Benteke were good options and Lukaku was the worst of the lot.
…Oh my goodness, I wouldn’t have written bring back Rafa if I’d have known I’d have to read the dirge of the last two mailboxes. Surely you can understand Rafa as a proxy for a team and manager that can actually defend a 1-0 lead? If you can’t and you just want to write in explaining why Rafa wasn’t as great as we all think now looking back with rose-tinted glasses, fair enough, but at least admit that while all-out attack is great in theory, being able to defend a bloody set piece is a wonderful thing to watch and something you will appreciate in 3 years when Rafa 2.0 takes over and brings back some discipline to this marauding outfit. Just thank me in 3 years when we beat Cystal Palace 1-0 away after a 19th minute goal.
Rafa the pioneer
My favourite memory from the Rafalution was Liverpool fans ringing up 606 to explain to the rest of us what squad rotation was and how Benitez was a genius for inventing it.
Advice for Jurgen
Hi all, given the recent divide between Liverpool fans in the mailbox lately I thought I’d chime in with a way to make Liverpool defensively sound again….wait for it…go 3-4-3.
I think Klopp has all the tools to make this formation work. His 3 CBs are 3 from Matip,Lovern, Klavan and Gomez, yes they are all struggling at the minute but at least there will be 3 of them on the pitch meaning one can sweep in and cover, also it puts another CB on the pitch for those pesky set pieces.
Out wide TAA/Gomez/Ox can cover the right and on the left it allows Robertson to get that left foot on the ball higher up the pitch or Moreno to continue doing that impression of a headless chicken.
Two in the middle come from Henderson, Milner, Can or G.W (yeah theres not alot of flair there but it would make them more structurally sound) And up front its 3 from Firmino, Salah, Mane, Coutinho and Sturridge (sorry Danny Ings but I now longer count you as a footballer)
So there you have it Jurgen, 3-4-3 and you’ll safely secure that 4th place trophy for the second year running.
*or not, I mean Jurgen Klopp knows way more about football than me.
I’d just like to pick up on a quote from the Big Weekend feature this morning: “Koeman is somewhat justified in complaining about Jose Mourinho placing undue pressure on him and his side. Everton spent £150.6million this summer, but lost their record goalscorer. They had ample time to replace him, but 20-goal strikers are a rare commodity. It is also not as if the Toffees were on the precipice last season of the top four; they finished eight points behind a sixth-placed United side who have strengthened considerably.”
It’s interesting saying that United “strengthened considerably” this summer. Correct me if I’m wrong but I think the point trying to be made is that the players that have come in are improvements on what we had previously, but I think that is over-simplifying things. Matic is obviously an improvement on Fellaini and Carrick in that defensive role, and Lukaku is a brilliant but different striker to Zlatan. But Lindelof has played the part of rotation option so far, and Zlatan is not yet match-fit. So I would say that “strengthened considerably” is going a touch too far. A more accurate statement would be to say that we “strengthened but improved considerably”, given that we have seen improved performances and consistency from a number of players who were already part of the squad: Jones, Blind, Pogba, Mkhitaryan, Martial and Rashford have all been in better form this season than they were last, in my opinion. The two new players who have been regularly involved have obviously contributed to the upturn in our form, but as I said: the real improvement is in the squad we already had.
The difference between United’s summer business and Everton’s is that we made sensible signings that we knew would fit into our style of play, and addressed known issues with the squad. Everton tried to replace a 20-odd goal a season striker with 4 players (Rooney, Ramirez, Vlasic and promoted Calvert-Lewin), signed two players for essentially the same position (Klaassen & Sigurdsson), and only signed one centre-back when they were crying out for at least two (Keane). They should have avoided the sentimental signing of Rooney for a start – it was always going to work out better for United and Rooney himself than it was for Everton. It wouldn’t have been the worst idea in the world to go after both Alfie Mawson and Fernando Llorente while raiding Swansea; those three combined were involved in a good number of goals for Swansea last season – both Mawson (4 goals in 27, inc. 3 headed goals) and Llorente (15 in 33, inc. 8 headed goals) took frequent advantage of Sigurdsson’s set piece delivery – so it would have benefited Everton to recruit players whose strengths compliment Sigurdsson’s. Even if they didn’t fancy Llorente, Chicharito was still available for a reasonable fee and I’m sure he would have at least matched the goals scored by the current 4 Everton forwards at this point.
So in my opinion, no, Koeman is not at all justified in complaining about the pressure being put on him. If you spend £150m on players in one window then there is a certain responsibility to deliver a reasonable return that comes with that. If you can’t do it then the problem is with one or more of your coaching methods, your tactics or your recruitment policy – the responsibility for all of which falls squarely on the shoulders of Koeman. I’m not writing off Everton or saying their season is already a failure – they could equally as likely turn it around – but Koeman needs to wise up and deal with the fact that he’s now in a management job with significantly higher targets and expectations than any other he’s been in before.
It’s Friday. There was no football on last night (in England!), so I’ll have a bash at getting published…
What does every player in this 18 man match day squad have in common?
Tim Howard, Luke Young, George Boateng, John O’Shea, Sylvain Distain, Danny Murphy, Gareth Barry.
They are all in the top 50 for most Premier League appearances in since its inception!
That is a lot of f***ing dross to have hung around for a lot of f***ing time!
It was only Burton
I read Mediawatch – nine times. Then I read ’16 conclusions on the Carabao Cup’, and got another 3. There are surely no useful conclusions that can be drawn from a straightforward win against Burton…
Tim Colyer (Chelsea fan not drawing any useful conclusions from beating Forest either) Singapore
Juande Ramos’s revenge
Maybe this has been commented on and I missed it, but did anyone notice that one H. Redknapp only had four points from eight games?
I assume his successor will make a living out of telling people this non-stop.
In fairness, I suppose it is twice as good as Spurs managed, albeit Birmingham play at a level below the Premier League. Against inferior opposition. Didn’t he sign 14 players in the summer? He didn’t get to sign Crouch, Defoe or Kranjcar so I suppose that’s where it fell down.
*cough* Charlatan *cough* What? Who said that?
Labouring with Rafa
If having Rafa Benitez as manager is a pain comparable to child birth, it’s a welcomed change from the waterboarding experienced in the hands of McClaren, Carver, Pardew and Kinnear.
Nik (Hoping for Octuplets) NUFC
Fuss over nothing
Harry, CFC, in the Thursday afternoon mailbox, wondered why there had been no morning mails about Chelsea’s youngsters performing well against Forest in the league cup.
Well, I would say it’s because Forest (and I’m a Forest fan) are absolutely dire and most people, even other Chelsea fans, probably realise you can’t draw anything meaningful from a one sided match like that.
John B, London
What the f*ck is the Berna-bayo?
I have mailed this piece before but it wasn’t published, probably because there were too many Liverpool fans whining about their defence that day. I read Sarah’s piece about Mourinho’s loyal disciples and then I saw Moreno assist a goal against Sevilla and it just hit me to draw up a list of players that everyone else seems to hate but the manager sticks with. Now i don’t follow the lower clubs of the league much so I’ll go with just the top six.
Chelsea (Antonio Conte) – Cahill
Spurs (Pochettino) – Sorry, can’t think of anyone and Sissoko doesn’t count cos Poch doesn’t like him much either.
Man City ( Pep) – Otamendi
Liverpool (Klopp) – Now we have quite a few here (Henderson, Karius, Lovren etc) but the obvious top choice is Moreno.
Arsenal (Wenger) – Welbeck
Man Utd (Mourinho) – Fellaini
Other club’s fans can list their own players.
Emmanuel (why is Spurs different?) Man Utd
Based on recent events, I trust that I am not the only squire to believe that Neymar is a pr*ck of the highest order.
Jay Shah, AFC (Peterborough)