Where is it going wrong for Liverpool?

Still suffering a hangover from Liverpool’s 3-1 capitulation at the hands of West Ham, I’ve found myself reading many tweets about where things have gone wrong. Fingers are being pointed at individual players and even at a manager who was so correctly lauded last season. To make things worse, the Super Sunday game has started with Manchester United’s ‘Van Gaalacticos’ looking like a top class team again. How have things turned so bad, so quickly?

The answer is simple really, it starts with the sale of Luis Suarez and ends with the current squad. Losing Suarez was a catastrophic blow to the Reds and many fans brushed it off as if it wouldn’t matter. ‘We managed without Owen, Torres etc.’ Maybe that was the case in some respects, but the reality is we have never had a player as gifted as Suarez in the Premier League era.

What has become crystal clear to me is we aren’t just missing his goals, but his ability to keep the opposition occupied for an entire 90 minutes. Forget about the bans, how often was Suarez injured? Never. He was vital to our success and we were naive to think we could replace his influence with a deeper squad.

The theory was that we couldn’t necessarily replace his goals, so we will strengthen our defence to compensate a little. So far it’s not working. There isn’t a single member of our defensive unit that inspires confidence defensively and the time it takes for them to improve is going to cost us dearly. In the meantime, we haven’t got the firepower available to out score opponents like we did last season.

I’m not here to criticise Rodgers in any way, I feel sorry for him, because fans are already getting on his back. I’m also not pointing out individual players because at this stage I feel that is unfair. Replacing Suarez is an impossible job, but I would have preferred to see the likes of Di Maria, Falcao or Sanchez come in as a direct replacement. Again, the reality is Liverpool have never been able to sign players of that proven quality.

The flip side of all this is we do have a deeper squad full of potential, but that means that we as fans have got to settle for a battle to get back into the top 4 rather than a title challenge. Anything else will be a bonus. A Suarez inspired Liverpool overachieved last season and this has distorted the expectations of many Liverpool fans. We have to accept we are still building. Our financial position doesn’t allow us to go head to head with United, City, Chelsea and Arsenal. It is something we are working towards and our stadium development will help towards that goal. What we must not do is lose patience with Rodgers and start abusing individual players. We need to stick together because we are in for a bumpy ride.



Competition Time

We all love free stuff right? Course we do! So here is a fantastic competition that is sure to excite you.

If like us you have spent many an hour in front of LMA Manager, Championship Manager or Football Manager you will know the feeling and emotional roller coaster that comes with playing those games. Well author Chris Darwen has taken that one step further and written a diary based around his fictional manager Johnny Cooper, all based on his experience of Championship Manager. In celebration of his forthcoming second book “Johnny Cooper, Championship Manager: The Second Season Syndrome (according to Champ Man)”, he is giving people the chance to win a signed paperback of his debut ” Johnny Cooper, Championship Manager: The Story of Mansfield Town FC 99/00 (according to Championship Manager)”.

All you have to do is email; johnnycooper@chrisdarwen.com with the answer to the following question:
Who ends the 99/00 season as Johnny Coopers top scorer?
The competition ends on Friday October 3rd and the winner will be announced afterwards.

You can purchase a copy of “Johnny Coper, Championship Manager: The Story of Mansfield Town 99/00 (according to Championship. Manager) from here.
Good Luck


5 Reasons Why… Liverpool should still be considered as a ‘work in progress’ team

Ok, Liverpool may have finished second last season with only 2 points separating them from champions Manchester City. However, it is pretty much a consensus among everybody that it was more about them overachieving and getting a bit lucky while other teams were underachieving or in transition.
So come season 2014/2015, how should we consider Liverpool? Work in progress or finished product with enhancement to be made? My opinion? The former.

1/ One player… Luis Suarez
A lot has already been said about the 3 biting incidents in which Suarez was involved and there is no doubt that this kind of action has to be banned from the football world. However, one cannot deny the enormous talent that this player has. Liverpool will greatly miss Suarez and I’m not talking only about his 30+ goals. He has this ability to create something from nothing and also the capacity to drag defenders towards him and thus creating more space for his teammates.

2/ Transfer window has been crazy
This off-season, Brendan Rodgers and his backroom staff have not been slacking…. There has been no less than 8 new recruits and 1 loan in together with 6 transfers out and 10 loans out. No wonder that with the exit of such an influential player like Suarez, LFC had to look for players who could not only compensate on the goal scoring chart but also on creating goal scoring opportunities for others.
So the main question here is… Can BR pull all the new and ‘old’ players together and maintain their good flowing kind of play or will they encounter the same problem that Spurs did last season? With the selling of their main guy, namely Gareth Bale, Spurs could not make all their recruits (transfer fee of over £110M) play together as a team, which resulted in an average season.

3/ Which formation/Who to play
As mentioned above, no more than 9 players joined the team this off season. 3 of them are defensive players (RB, LB and CB) while all the other 6 are attacking players (still keeping in mind that 1 of them – Origi – has been loaned out). So, that’s 5 players to try fit in the team to compensate Suarez’s absence. 4 games already in the regular season and it seems that Brendan is still trying to juggle having a solid but creative midfield and a very attacking front 2 or 3. Now with Sturridge’s injury while on international duties, it seems like Balotelli will be leading the attack alone with 2 attacking midfielders by his side (Sterling & Lallana), an advanced playmaker (Coutinho), a solid holding/box to box midfield (Henderson) and a ‘quarterback’ in StevieG.


4/ Young and inexperienced squad
If one has a look at the starting XI that Brendan fielding during the weekend against Aston Villa and their respective age, it was as follows:
– Mignolet – 26
– Manquillo – 20
– Lovren – 29
– Sakho – 24
– Moreno – 22
– Gerrard – 34
– Henderson – 24
– Coutinho – 22
– Lallana – 26
– Makhovic – 20
– Balotelli – 24
That’s an average age of 24 – a team which include the aging StevieG at 34 years old. Youth is not necessarily a bad thing but what is missing there is the experience. Not as much as the experience of playing in the EPL but of playing up to 3 games a week and playing for a ‘bigger’ team – no disrespect to other teams there.


5/Champions League back to Anfield!
While all the LFC fans (me included) are thrilled about having mid-week Champions League games back to Anfield again, there is some uncertainty as to how LFC will deal with the extra set of games. Last time LFC was in CL was back in 2009 when they were eliminated at the group stages. Since then, LFC only had to deal with the EPL and the domestic cups. This has given them more time during the week to prepare for the weekend games. Now with CL back in town, it is still to be seen how LFC will deal with it. Yes, they have improved their squad numbers but most players have little to no CL experience. Also, one has to remember that injuries are like the lottery and at everybody’s doorstep.


LFC still has some way to go before being able to compete with Manchester City and Chelsea for the title but no doubt that they have enough quality in the squad to finish in the top 4 again this season.

Cheers for reading and as always, comments and reactions are greatly appreciated.

5 Reasons Why……. This Transfer Window was the best for a while.

Continuing our look at 5 reasons why…..
Our 5 today comes from SiRZ owner Ryan and he explains why the last transfer window was the best one for the Premier League in a long while.

1/ We had top quality players coming in

The first reason this window was better than any other was the simple fact we had quality players join the ranks of the Premier League. Di Maria, Falcao, Diego Costa, Sanchez, Mangala, Cabella & returns for Balotelli & Fabregas all go to show that despite recent claims, the Premier League is where all the top players want to ply their trade. Infact of the top 3 World Players of the Year only one hasn’t graced the League and that’s Messi, who it would take a lot to persuade him away from his beloved Barcelona.

Diego Costa has adapted well to the Premier League.

2/ The Premier League now has the 3 most natural strikers in the game today.

It already had one in Sergio Aguero. But now with Diego Costa and Falcao joining Chelsea and. Manchester United respectively, we have the three top goal scorers who will hopefully lead their forward lines and continue to build on their own personal reputations. Certainly with Diego Costa already looking settled in front of the Chelsea creative machine he looks like he could be the missing part of their puzzle. Also with Liverpool acquiring Balotelli and Welbeck moving to Arsenal, those two will be worth keeping eyes on as they have have a natural ability to find the back of the net when played down the middle.

Aguero carries the weight of the City fans on his shoulders in what they hope will be a title winning year.

3/ Liverpool got rid of their albatross.

Come on I did well to get three without mentioning the obvious. Luis Suarez has finally got his gnashers out of Anfield and although now FIFA got bitch slapped down by CAS they could have got a bit more for him, I think every Liverpool fan will be happy that he and the circus his actions attract has finally departed. He had some excellent solo match winning performances for Liverpool but often his actions were overshadowed by his cannibal routine, now hopefully every football fan will sit and enjoy the smooth counter attacking football Liverpool play and if not there’s still Mario who can cause us some amusement.

Its the guy banned from football playing for his new team that was banned from signing players!

4/ Some English players got some great moves.

Micah Richards must have been fucking annoyed being at Manchester City, A product of their youth academy and once thought to be the next big defender for club and country and rightly so. He found himself marginalised and under utilised by City and despite a few injury concerns never got the game time he deserved. Now with a loan move to Fiorentina he should hopefully get a lot more time on the pitch and show City where they fucked up. Another good move was for Danny Welbeck aka Dat Guy, his desire to play and his bulldog chasing the ball mentality often meant he was played out of position at Manchester United so never lived up to the hype surrounding him. Hopefully Arsene Wenger will play him down the middle and let Dat Guy score a him 10 or so goals this year, my only concern with that is Arsenal still don’t have a guaranteed 20 goal a season scorer which the likes of Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea all posses. Elsewhere Thomas Ince made a clever move to Hull who have altered their play in the last two seasons to utilise wide men. Ashley Cole finally fucked off although unfortunately it was only to Italy, but it means we don’t have to watch him on a weekly basis unless we choose to. Frank Lampard proved he still needed to improve his bank balance to single handily keep Greggs afloat with a move first to the MLS and then to Manchester City on loan. and Manchester United finally cut their losses on “The Next Paul Scholes” Tom Cleverley and allowed him to join Villa on loan until his contract expires in the summer.

Thomas Ince should settle right in under Steve Bruces watchful eye.

5/ Transfer Deadline Day was brilliant as always.

Jim White, Purple Dildos, Fuck Her Right In the Pussy chants, Jason Bent doing an Odemwingie, Fans turning up at other teams grounds and ‘Arry blanking an interview in the car I love he randomness of Deadline Day, roll on January!

Evertons new signing is a massive one.

Agree or Disagree? Get in touch the normal ways on social media or commenting on the article we read them all.


5 Reasons Why………….Manchester United Will Be Back Sooner Than You Think

1/ Goals, lots of them. United now boast a trio of supreme goalscorers in Robin Van Persie, Wayne Rooney and Radamel Falcao. Between them they have scored hundreds of goals. Add into the mix goals from elsewhere and it all adds up to a team that will be hard to stop. Angel Di Maria and Juan Mata will create and score plenty between them too, making United’s attack the most frightening in the league. They may find though that attack will have to be the best form of defence.


2/ Confident Leadership is something that didn’t exist during the David Moyes era. He repeatedly missed out on his key targets with players like Cesc Fabregas turning him down, resulting in him paying over the odds for a familiar player in Fellaini. New manager Louis Van Gaal started slowly, but eventually picked up not one, but two marquee signings. The Dutchman’s reputation has played a massive part in his summer window successes and it’s clear that he is now calling the shots.


3/ Tom Cleverley is no longer the new Paul Scholes.

4/ Old Trafford can become a fortress again. If LVG can put together a team that is as fearful on grass as it is on paper, then Old Trafford will be a place teams are petrified of playing at once again. He must bring back the fear factor if United are to bounce back.

5/ A season out of Europe may be exactly what United need to revitalize themselves. Liverpool had an excellent season without the distraction of European football for the first time in years and the same thing could work for the Red Devils. However, another season out of Europe, with the money they’ve already spent could prove disastrous financially.