Liverpool FC: Time For Heroes


Player-Manager Kenny Dalglish wins the double in 1986

If you thought the situation that Roy Hodgson met at Anfield was difficult, well then spare a thought for Kenny Dalglish who has walked into a complete and utter mess. Bereft of confidence a squad that should be comfortably in the European spots finds itself closer to relegation. The reasons are many but primarily come from the mismanagement of the club at the top level over the last few years. The club Hicks and Gillett bought was heading to its second Champions League Final in three years. Negative net spending, a chief executive and a manager later John Henry and NESV bought a club in the relegation zone. They needed to turn the club around and immediately appointed Damien Comolli in a Director of Football style role. The plan seemed to be to change managers in the summer. However, with Roy Hodgson’s methods serving only to further accelerate any decline the owners felt was time to bring back the biggest living Liverpool legend in an attempt to turn things around. -read on>

New Year’s Resolution: Show Some Integrity


Alex Ferguson and Dimitar Berbatov

Old Trafford; Sunday afternoon; FA Cup. King Kenny’s return to the fold in the Liverpool hotseat coincides with the game that the fans most want to win. Two incidents mar the game: Dimitar Berbatov’s blatant dive to win an early and decisive penalty, and Steven Gerrard’s reckless two-footed assault on Michael Carrick’s shins. To all TV viewers then, not a penalty and a definite red card. Surely Alex Ferguson and Dalglish had no option but to agree? No, wait, of course not. Silly me.

You see, the thing is that managers believe they must defend their players at all costs. “It was a penalty… he was definitely clipped… the momentum is enough to bring the player down”, said Ferguson of his centre forward, who appeared to take two perfectly balanced steps beyond Daniel Agger’s dainty challenge before collapsing to the floor (or perhaps Ferguson would have us believe there was a sudden gust of wind). read on

Dani Pacheco, Liverpool’s Cesc Fabregas


Daniel Pacheco, Spain and Liverpool's young talent

It is the summer of 2007. A product of Barcelona’s famed youth academy has just been snapped up by a leading Premier League side. Hopes are high for the youngster. Comparisons are made with Gerard Pique and Cesc Fabregas. Have the Catalans let another young gem slip through their fingers? Liverpool hope that the answer is yes, as they unveil their new starlet. His name is Daniel Pacheco. -read on>

Roy Hodgson: How to Lose Games and Alienate People


Roy Hodgson after signing for Liverpool

upper90magazine has moved to www.upper90magazine.com

Liverpool Football Club doesn’t sack managers. Well not very often anyway. The fans at Anfield are normally pretty loyal and it is because of this loyalty that the current climate surrounding the club feels so peculiar. There is an uncomfortable atmosphere surrounding all things Liverpool this Christmas. Even in the darkest days of the post-operation Houllier reign, fans never universally called for his head. After two dire seasons it was clear his time was up and it was obvious that the club had stopped progressing and instead was heading painfully backwards. It still wasn’t nice seeing him go. Even last season, whilst there was a share of Andy Gray worshipers venting their anger on 606, there was a considerable section of the fan base still 100% behind Rafa Benitez. These managers had their places in Liverpool fans’ hearts and minds and when they parted, it was with a sense of regret. However, when Roy Hodgson clears his desk at Melwood there won’t be that feeling. It is sad to admit it, but we all liked Roy more when he wasn’t our manager.

There’s something about Roy that seems to suggest he doesn’t quite get Liverpool football club. -read on>

Good Kop – Bad Kop: Which Liverpool can we expect this season?


The last few years have left me pretty confused as to which Liverpool I’m going to get this season. There’s the Good Kop; Title challengers, consistency, incredible goal scoring form from ‘Nando and Stevie and impenetrable at the back. But there’s also the Bad Kop; Negative football, dire in front of goal, shaky at the back and no ambition or creativity from midfield. The other week’s win over Chelsea (following a nice little unbeaten run) left some journos reaching for the ‘Liverpool on the up’ Headlines, but then a dodgy draw with Wigan last Wednesday and a dire 2-0 defeat to Stoke begs the question: which Liverpool can we really expect this season? Lawro said on 5Live at the weekend that he can’t see Liverpool making the top 6 this year. Pessimistic or Realistic?

Let’s start with the gaffa. Last season, Roy Hodgson was everyone’s favourite manager. He took a small, cheap Fulham squad and stretched them to about 60 games in a season – including an incredible Europa League Final against Athletico Madrid and a decent upper-mid-table finish, (following top 7 the year before). It was an obvious promotion to get the Liverpool job, which he rightly described as one of the biggest jobs in football, but it’s also left a bit of a dent in Hodgson’s reputation, going by performances and results so far. There are times when I think his Fulham squad last year were better than this Liverpool lot, and I’ll come back to that, but it’s also tactics, creativity and even managerial swagger that seem to have deserted Roy on his move from South West London to Merseyside. -read on>

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 51 other followers

%d bloggers like this: