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My Interview for a Spurs Blog……

I was recently asked if I would be interviewed for a Spurs blog for the upcoming game on Sunday – for those of you interested he is what I said……. Full blogging will return when I am back from Florida…… Thanks to Dom at What a Fantastic Run (www.whatafantasticrun.com)...

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Mixed Feelings……

Posted by Spencer | Posted in Liverpool FC | Posted on 13-07-2010

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Its now been a couple of weeks since the appointment of Roy Hodgson as Liverpool manager and normally I would have written a blog sooner following a major development such as this, but the truth is I have struggled to find inspiration to actually put some words down on paper.

Should I really be feeling like this when a new chapter in our famous history is beginning?

What was I really expecting from the club in its current predicament? Hiddink or Mourinho? In the end the appointment wasn’t really a surprise after all the speculation following Rafa’s departure but even when it became fact I didn’t feel excited at all by the news. Looking at this realistically (as I always try to do) the club was never in a position to appoint a ‘high profile’ manager with a similar CV to that of our outgoing manager and what our club deserves and has come to expect. But with no money, no Champions League and a huge debt issue the reality of the next managerial appointment was always going to be someone of the standing of Roy Hodgson.

Lets be clear before I carry on this is not a blog with the intention of ‘slagging off’ Roy Hodgson I am just trying to explain how I feel about the recent events at our club. Roy Hodgson has proved to be a very good manager during his career and I have a lot of respect for him but winning league trophies in Sweden and Denmark are not usually the credentials the club look for in becoming manager of Liverpool FC. Granted he has done fantastic things with Fulham and deserves all of the praise that goes with it but being manager of Liverpool FC is a different prospect altogether and I am worried he might not be up to the job.

All that being said he is now our manager and with every manager there has been since I started supporting the club (Paisley through to Benitez) I have always backed them and my position today remains the same. In a way I do feel sorry for him. He has arrived when the club has no direction because of the current owners and he is left to try and satisfy and keep the likes of Torres, Gerrard and any other player that has been linked with a move away from the club knowing full well he will have very limited funds to replace (if they can be replaced) those that do leave.

I also think the reason for me feeling this way is down to the fact that I still can’t believe the club have let a manager with the qualities of Rafa go AND to the the European champions at that! Sometimes I hope that its all a bad dream and that Rafa is still our manager but unfortunately a bad dream it is not.

Despite me not wanting Rafa to leave, Liverpool FC now has a new manager in Roy Hodgson and I sincerely wish him all the best and really hope he can bring some stability to the club. Whilst in charge he will have my support but for the moment it will not stop me from having mixed feelings about his appointment.

Y.N.W.A

Is this really the World Cup……

Posted by Spencer | Posted in World Cup | Posted on 15-06-2010

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After months of waiting the greatest show on earth has finally arrived…..or has it?

The first games in each group are almost complete and you can say the tournament has yet to start. I have watched most games and followed the others online (some of us do have to work you know) and I can safely say 90% of the games have all been boring and with the exception of the 1st half of the Germany game and the South Africa game there has been a distinct lack of quality shown by all teams.

Are these really what the best 32 teams in the world are capable of? Why have teams struggled to perform? Are we seeing the results of ever increasing league campaigns where players haven’t got anything left in the tank?

Another major point could be the lack of ‘true’ atmosphere in the stadiums where you see large sections of the ground empty in each match and the crowd being drowned out by the ever increasing annoyance of the Vuvuzela’s. The England match was a prime example of this  – normally the England supporters resident band would be playing and the England fans would accompany them but on Saturday all I heard was a sound like a million bees buzzing. I know its an African tradition but how annoying must it be to be in the stadium sat next to thousands of people blowing horns in your ears??

In reference to the empty stadiums what are the reasons for this? Have FIFA overpriced tickets? Surely when the greatest sporting event takes place all tickets for every game should be sold out? FIFA surely must address this as soon as possible as the tournament could be in danger of being a damp squib!

Personally I think the tournament will kick off for real once the 2nd round of matches kick off as all teams will now know what they need to do to qualify and in most cases that will be a win. So hopefully we will see the type of football we’ve all been waiting for and that the excitement of the World Cup will really begin otherwise we will be asking ‘is this really the World Cup?’…..

Media 1 v Benitez 0…….

Posted by Spencer | Posted in Liverpool FC | Posted on 07-06-2010

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On Thursday 3rd June 2010 the somewhat inevitable happened at around 4pm that afternoon, Liverpool and Rafa Benitez parted company.

Although I had expected something big to happen to our club this summer ( http://wp.me/pMjI6-1f) it still came as a shock to me whilst driving home from Liverpool that evening. When I heard Rafa’s statement being read out on the radio I felt quite emotional especially when at the end of it he said ‘ I have no words to thank you enough for all these years and I am very proud to say that I was your manager. Thank you so much once more and always remember: You’ll never walk alone’

My emotions would then quickly turn to anger after I started to listen to the phone-in shows on Talksport (I know but I couldn’t help myself and I was driving and couldn’t tweet) when so called ‘fans’ started ringing in all slap happy and quoting rubbish. This together with the obvious delight of all the Talksport presenters started to send me over the edge.

After last season and the outrageous anti-rafa agenda in the media this in reality was the only outcome during the summer. The issue I have is that the so called fans ringing in to radio stations and posting on various websites have bought into the media set agenda and have forgotten what has happened under the management of Rafa and how much we have progressed.

When Rafa took over in 2004  we had limped into the Champions League position finishing 4th on 60 points (which shows how much other teams have caught up the big four since then) and a squad made up of players that Rafa clearly did not like. However if you had said to me then that during the next 5 years you will win the European Cup, FA Cup, Super Cup, get to another CL final and semi final, Carling Cup final and finish on 86 points in the Premier League (which actually won the league this year) then I would have chewed your arm off.

Having been a Liverpool supporter for over 32 years I have seen many highs and quite a few lows and in my opinion Rafa’s reign at Liverpool was a high.

So why did the media turn on Rafa? Your guess is as good as mine and I wish I knew. One bad season does not make you a bad manager and all you have to do is look at his managerial record to see this but all they can say is ‘he has been dining out on Istanbul for the last 4 years’ or ‘he is not very inviting when talking to the press’. Do they mean he is  the same as the god that is Capello? The reasons for the ‘Rafa bashing’ are astonishing when you think that Wenger hasn’t won anything for 6 years now (so what has he been dining out on) and Ferguson only speaks to the press that he wants to speak to – there is no consistency with the media!

I am not saying that Rafa was perfect – some of his decisions made me bang my head against a brick wall but all managers make silly decisions but are never slated as much as Rafa was. We all know that there are far greater problems at our football club and that i believe these are the main reasons for what has happened. Until these are sorted out we will not be able to keep up with the likes of Chelsea, Man Utd, Man City, Arsenal and even Spurs so whoever comes in as our next manager will have to accept that and try to over achieve during next season to regain that 4th spot.

So who will be our next manager? That is the burning question we all want to know as soon as possible. Whenever I am asked this I always answer with a question ‘find me a manager who has a better record than Rafa and is available and would come to Liverpool now?’. Its a difficult one to answer because quite simply there isn’t anyone. Whoever it is the main priority is to try and keep Torres, Gerrard and Mascherano to stay which is going to be the toughest job during the next few months but a job that has to be successful.

So I say to all of you ‘Rafa bashers’ remember exactly what has been achieved over the last 5 years and check all your facts because now that you have got your wish it may just come back to haunt you!

In the meantime and unfortunately the final score is Media 1 – Benitez 0

YNWA

Here is the news……

Posted by Spencer | Posted in Liverpool FC, You'll Never Walk Alone | Posted on 26-05-2010

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Rafa Benitez set to leave Liverpool for Juventus!

Rafa Benitez set to leave Liverpool for Inter Milan!

Rafa Benitez set to manage U.A.E!!

Fernando Torres to join Man City in record transfer!

Fernando Torres to Join Chelsea in record transfer!

Fernando Torres to join Barcelona as he has fallen out with Benetiz!

Man City set to buy Steven Gerrard in £30m swoop!

Real Madrid poised to land Gerrard as Jose sets his sights!

Benny and Masch off to Chelsea in double swoop!

And so it goes on and on and on……..and the season has only just ended!!

It appears that once again the media have decided that our manager and our top players will be leaving this summer with stories appearing on a daily basis in the papers.

I have a couple of issues with this.

It appears that any clown can now call themselves a journalist which then gives licence to be able to call yourself an expert and print stuff that quite clearly isn’t true!! Why has journalism come to this? It used to be a respected profession but now I’m not so sure.

Although the players and manager shouldn’t have to comment on every single story it would be nice if they would come out and say something on the lines of  ‘I am happy at Liverpool and will be staying at the club for next season’. This may put an end to all of the ‘speculation’ because the longer there is silence the more the media will keep telling us its all true. The prime example was with the Juventus/Rafa connection, which had been going on since January this year. Rafa had been silent all the way through which meant that the flames were constantly being fuelled. A strong statement in my view from Rafa could have ended the whole saga. Even after Juventus appointed a new manager Inter Milan become the favourites to land Rafa. In Rafa’s defence he has started to make noises to the media that he is happy at Liverpool and will be staying and even finding the link to the U.A.E amusing.

My point is though if you don’t extinguish the flames by staying silent then you are indirectly adding fuel to the fire.

Jamie Carragher in my view hit the nail on the head when he was quoted as saying last week that if you are not committed at Liverpool then you can pack your bags. I am glad a senior player has come out and expressed the views that the majority of Liverpool fans hold on this issue. I just wish more players would do the same.

Even after I started writing this blog Fernando Torres agent was quoted as saying  that he will be staying at Liverpool next season and yet a day later  we hear (according to some parts of the media) he hasn’t made up his mind yet!

I think that after the season the club had its not a surprise that our players are being linked elsewhere but it doesn’t give the media and journalists the right to make the majority of stories up on a daily basis.

I also have to laugh at the fact that the English media have gunned for the blood of Benitez, criticizing everything that he does but have no problem in reporting that nearly every top club in Europe is after him! He can’t be a bad manager after all can he?

Unfortunately all Liverpool fans will have to brace themselves for a summer of transfer speculation more than the kind we experienced in 2005 with Chelsea ad Gerrard. However I will not be made to believe anything until it actually happens!

Even if some of our top players do leave in the summer then I would suggest that we remember that NO player is bigger than Liverpool Football Club.

Y.N.W.A