12/19/2009 05:16:00 pm

Forget the red card - RAFA BENITEZ is responsible for the shambolic Portsmouth defeat.

According to Rafa Benitez, Javier Mascherano's red card was the catalyst for Liverpool's ignominious defeat to Portsmouth today. Well of course it was! It's not like Benitez is ever responsible for anything, is it? It's always something/someone else's fault. In reality though, Benitez is - as usual - the person most culpable for the team's capitulation.

After the game, Benitez said:

"If you analyse the first half we were doing well, even with their goal but then came the Mascherano incident. We were a good team in the first half and the sending off changed everything. We had some chances, we should have scored, we were controlling the game and everything changed with Mascherano".

In the words of Jules Winnfield: "Allow me to retort".

Reasons why Benitez is responsible for the defeat:

Overly defensive line-up

Against the bottom team in the league, Benitez's starting 11 contained 8 defensive-minded players!

Agger
Carragher
Johnson
Insua
Mascherano
Lucas
Dossena
Kuyt

5 of those players are defenders; two play defensive-midfield roles, and one is - for all intents and purposes - a defensive right-midfielder

Playing two holding midfielders

Why did Liverpool need to play with two defensive-mids against the POOREST DEFENCE IN THE LEAGUE? Yet more evidence of Benitez's stultifyingly defensive approach. The team should have been set-up to attack; instead, it was set-up not to lose.

Dropping Benayoun

WHY?! Benitez's treatment of the player is unbelievably frustrating. Benayoun is one of the club's best goal threats; he has 6 goals and 4 assists already this season; his superior ball retention skills and direct play are vital to the team, yet Benitez continually benches/subs him off.

Liverpool needed to win the Portsmouth game, so why not play the most attacking line-up available?! Why play it safe and go defensive against a team that should be brushed aside with ease.

Benitez seemingly has a pathological aversion to playing progressive, attacking football and allowing his players to express themselves.

Bringing Aurelio on when we needed to win

So - we're 1-0 down in a must-win game and crying out for creativity, and what does Benitez do? He ignores dedicated ATTACKING players like N'gog and Babel, and brings on a defender. Once again, this is a CAUTIOUS move. Aurelio may (allegedly) provide an attacking threat but his instincts are those of a defender, and funnily enough, that's because HE'S A DEFENDER!

Benitez has used the same tactic several times this season, but has it ever worked?! Has bringing on Aurelio ever propelled the team to victory? NO. If Benitez really wanted to win the game he would have brought on N'gog and Babel. Instead, he (IMO) played for the draw.

Changing a winning team.

Liverpool played 442 against Wigan and won the game. Why change things against Portsmouth?! Why not just stick with a winning team? For about 5 seconds on Wednesday night, I thought Benitez might finally have seen the light, but inside I knew that he would never stick with 442. After all, there's no point in sticking with a formation and line-up that works, is there?

Persisting with Gerrard behind Torres

This tactic no longer works! Anyone can see that. Forget what's happened in the distant past; look at the present and the recent past; it is clear that Gerrard/Torres is no longer a viable option.

Another reason that partnership should be retired is that it makes the team ultra-reliant on just two players. Usually, Gerrard and Torres don't spark in the formation, the team suffers. In a 442, the responsibility is spread around the team a little more, and Torres has another striker with whom to share the burden.

If we are to play Torres up front alone, then as I've argued for months, Benayoun should play in the hole, and Gerrard should play in central midfield.

Building a team that lacks creativity

It was 70 minutes before Liverpool had a shot on target today. That is simply unacceptable. This is what happens when you prioritise defence over attack, and play a creatively bankrupt midfield of Lucas, Masch, Dossena and Kuyt

Anti-football midfield partnership

How many times does this point need to be made? The Lucas/Mascherano partnership is simply not good enough. Playing two defensive-minded holding midfielders in *every game* is suffocating the team and providing no play-making impact whatsoever.

The team needs a playmaker; someone who can start attacks; spray passes about; link midfield to attack; join attacks and chip in with assists/goals. (Hmmm. Remind you of anyone?)

Lucas and Masch provide none of that. Everyone can see that their partnership is not beneficial to the team but Benitez pigheadedly refuses to change or adapt, which is one of his biggest weaknesses.

As I've argued from the start of the season, Gerrard - when fit - should be playing in CM alongside either Lucas or Masch, with Yossi playing in the hole. When Liverpool HAVE played this formation, the team has won and scored lots of goals (Hull, for example).

And consider this: Lucas on the bench v Wigan = Liverpool win. Lucas starts v Portsmouth = Liverpool defeat. Coincidence? I think not.

Persisting with Dirk Kuyt

What did Kuyt contribute to the performance in an attacking sense? Next to nothing. As usual. Still, he continues to start and finish every game while players who contribute (i.e. Yossi), are regularly benched.

Building an unbelievably slow team

Torres aside, is there a slower first XI in the entire league? Watching Liverpool's players struggle to run is really quite painful. And forget about counter-attacks; what is the point when our players are too slow to take advantage?

Spending 17m on a defensively-suspect right back

Once again, Glen Johnson gifted a goal to the opposition. His 'defensive' header in the box went straight to a Belhadj, who hammered in the opening goal. Against Arsenal last week, he was responsible for both goals conceded; the own goal, and then allowing Andrei Arshavin the space to fire off a shot.

Johnson has been excellent at times going forward but there is no denying that fact that he is defensively suspect and prone lapses in concentration/awareness.

It is no coincidence that since Johnson arrived, Liverpool's defensive solidity has plummeted. Yes, there are other reasons for our poor defensive performance, but Johnson's attacking ability should not mask the reality that he is (arguably) not a long-term solution to Liverpool's right back problem.

Benitez inexplicably chose to spend 17m on a defender when there were other areas of the team that needed strengthening more urgently. Did we really *need* Johnson? I would argue no. Liverpool could've bought a good right back for 6-8m, and put the rest towards a back-up striker/left-right attacking midfielder.

Spending 18m on Aquilani


The Aquilani farce continues. He is now injured again (quelle surprise); that is not the problem though; we should expect Aquilani to pick up little knocks here and there. The problem is that Benitez chose to buy a player with a horrendous injury history. This issue has been discussed to death but it was a negligent, indefensible decision. The team has suffered as a result of not having a top-quality FIT player making a contribution from the start of the season.

To add insult to injury, Benitez's handling of Aquilani has been a joke, with player clearly frustrated and (probably) demotivated after only 4 months at Anfield. If Benitez stays at Anfield, Aquilani will not last 5 years. He will be gone/dumped, just like Robbie Keane.

Staggering inability to motivate players/inspire confidence

Benitez is not and never has been a motivator. In my view, he does not inspire confidence in his players and he does not have the ability to get the best out his team. We have seen examples of this before, but this season is s sustained exampled of his inability to properly motivate players.

Do I need to remind anyone that Liverpool were playing the league's WORST TEAM?! If Benitez cannot motivate his players to do the business against Portsmouth (!) then there really is a fundamental problem somewhere.

The red card was inconvenient, but there was still enough quality on the pitch to get something out of the game. If we had a manager who was capable of motivating players, perhaps the game might not have been lost.

This season has been a ceaseless merry-go round of misery; even in our darkest days under Graeme Souness, it was never this bad; and whilst Benitez is at the club it is never going to change. He has been making the same mistakes over and over for the last 5 years, but the CL/FA Cup win, and the latter part of last season papered over the cracks.

Basically, 5 years of overly defensive line-ups; dodgy substitutions; poor transfer performance, and man-management catastrophes have come home to roost, and Liverpool have suffered big time.

I really hate to say this, but I told you so.

I have been arguing for the last 4 years (and more) that Benitez is not right man for the job. I have been highlighting the same mistakes over and over again, trying to illustrate exactly *why* he's not the man for the job. I've been shouted down endlessly by the pro-Benitez brigade, but maybe now people will finally WAKE UP to the fact that he is NOT the right man to lead Liverpool.

Jaimie Kanwar
----

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288 Comments :

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Guest said...

Wise words.  Well said that man!  Surely, Rafa's days are numbered?

Stavros said...

well i would agree with you but i think that if the red card was not given,we would have won that game..so i cant agree with you..it's not Rafa's fault again..3 of the 7 games we lost this season are due to referee's false decisions..with fulham we got 2 red cards none of them were,today we got javier's red card which wasnt and with sunderland we lost due to a "balloon" goal..so is rafa the only one who's wrong???
anyway i want to ask if aquilani's injury is serious.

Jack said...

good post...wish u could become the manager...(i'm not kidding anyone is better that rafa at this point)

Guest said...

Spot on.  Couldn't have said it better.

poloy said...

This is getting ridiculous. I'm not even surprised or frustrated anymore. It's seems to be a weekly routine, we lose then we win/draw, and the cycle continues.

zammy said...

ive had enuf of benitez!! he cant freaking lift our team's morale.. in fact, he's bringing the morale even lower due to his dodgy team's selection & pigheaded persistence in selecting underperforming players (lucas, kuyt, insua). get him out of anfield!!

OPG said...

Sorry but the this crap team from the far south almost held Chelsea at Stamford bridge, it is time you people realised that you are buying people not machines and the most expensive player we bought in the summer has not had a game for us.
This bunch of misfits is beginning to show up the STARS of the top teams.
You were simply outrun, outplayed and out thought, and for once the ref was not paid for!!!

Guest said...

Your title shows how weak the report is, how cn you FORGET the red card ? it was the turning point of the game. Rafa didn't get it, once they go on the pitch the players are to blame

navofarabia said...

Cmon Jamie...if rafa is so bad then why do Real Madrid want him? Its not as if Rafa (if he left Liverpool) would go to a 2nd rate team...he wouldnt!

He is a top class manager who has punched above his weight and dealt with endless problems al LFC. He has made mistakes but what manager hasnt??

Get behind the team and manager...do u remember a certain manager at old trafford who was about to be sacked....what happened next???

This season may be a right off but for some reason I have complete faith thjat we will make ttop four and finish witha trophy....what would u say then!!? Probably saqck the manager! lol

Allys Shrimp said...

What is going on? What on earth is going on?Why is he playing Lucas week in and week out!!?Is Rafa the only person in the world who doesnt see its NOT WORKING!
I am so tired of his negativ, defensive approach to the games. The players look frustrated, tired and slow. Can anybody please do something before we`re in the relegation struggle!

Guest said...

another article with an opinion based on zero fact.

You have spent the last week posting facts and figures, one being goals per game ratio from which i understand was only slightly lower then last year - yet you continue to barrage your articles with this overly defensive team nonsense.

Yes rafa will blame the ref ------ and so will i or javair, it was a first half sending off...ofc it will effect the game....this team nearly held chelsea to a draw.....can you really blame the manager for losing to a team that has been reignited with avram grant coming on board?

Your article is also hypocritical...on one hand your blaming rafa for an overly defensive team, then also saying that hes spent money on a defensively suspect player (insinuating hes great at going forward)....

just like all your articles, that seem to be the angry drunk man in the pub, no real sense just lots of shouting..

kop king said...

thanks for the memories rafa !!!  time to go i think !!!

Ron O said...

Alberto Aquilani is Injured again... wait a minute, he is injured yet has never played a game. This is getting frustrating, its like a win is nowadays a luxury for us

Ron O said...

I mean REALLY played a game

Guest said...

deluded.

stop being  B-L-I-N-D

Guest said...

Spot on! btw LUCAS SUCKS!

Guest said...

your bottom of the league for a reason. If we played an attacking formation with our most skillful players we would have battered you. rafa gave you 3 points.

Jaimie Kanwar said...

Madrid want Benitez because they want the CL; that's clearly what they prioritise these days.  Plus, he has links with the club; it's a lot more complicated than just saying 'well, Madrid want him so he must be good'.

When are people like you going to stop having an allegiance to the individual and start thinking about the impact on the CLUB?

I don't care if we make the top 4 and finish with a trophy; that does not change all the mistakes that have been made. I still want Benitez to leave because he will just make the same mistakes in the future.

Where is the evidence over the last 5 years that benitez has learnt ANYTHING?

Guest said...

no the manager is paid to take the responsibility for teams results. We were extremely poor even before the red.

Jack said...

maybe he wants to be sack and go to real madrid...would u have played Lucas all the time even if u think that is not working? And remember all the subs he made during the Fulham game? Taking off Yossi for some young kid from the Academy? And if LFC were to fire him, they will have to pay him off, is a win-win situation for him. Rafa is either a genius trying to get out or stubborn as hell...either one I won't want him to be around for the next season, would u?

Guest said...

YEs its going to ok its going to be ok its going to be ok its going to be ok its going to be ok(if i say it enough will it be ok?)

Jaimie Kanwar said...

The red card was not the turning point of the game/.  We were already one goal behind, remember? Plus, at the time of th red card, we hadn't even had a single shot on target.

The problem was with the defensive line-up AGAIN.  Then, we have the ingrained problems of no confidence, no plan B, no creativity, and Benitez's inability to inspire his players against the BOTTOM TEAM IN THE LEAGUE.

Guest said...

Navofarabia,

It's getting harder by the day to get behind players who don't seem to get behind themselves at the current state, sooner or later, these players will need to go out there and justify their reputations and earn their paychecks before things go way out of hand.

As far as Real Madrid wanting RB, well, Madrid wants pretty much every manager out there. How long does a Madrid manager actually last??
Just because they want him, does not mean he's better than most out there.

Although faith is still there, the team as a whole has to show us all that there's light at the end of this dark tunnel. I'd prefer them to stop saying "we need to improve" every interview they get their mouths on and just get on with it and play like their lives depended on it.


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Guest said...

Two holding in MF is the problem. Lucas is a good player but him and Masch NO ! You can tell Lucas is doing what Rafa tells him to-the -letter. I feel sorry for him. He's quite a creative player really . He's just had it drummed out of him by rafa and to be fair to hime he's improved a lot and is doing a good job. If you surround him with attacking, creative players you will see his strengths. But when we play such a sterile MF i can apprreciate why he p*sses you off.

Guest said...

How can they sack him ... True he deserves to go but can we afford to spend millions and millions in payin him compensation and then the money involved in trying to sign a new manager of decent quality..

Not gonna happen til end of the season and rafa knows that cos thats why he keeps sayin he guarantees 4th place ..  Hes not daft he knows if he doesnt get 4th place hes long gone so best to keep up with the bullshitting to try keep a few faithful fans happy

Guest said...

have to agree. hes had his time. he is STUBBORN AS A MULE that is what i cant take about the man.

TP said...

Kanwar,

I honestly believe you'd rather see us lose so you can continue to write this anti Benitez drivel.
Please name the WORLD CLASS manager who will ride in on his white horse and save the day AND put up with the mess Rafa has had to deal with at times.
And if you really think the Souness era was better than this then you really are a WUM of the highest order.......or 15 years old.

Jake said...

<span style="">Some of you need to wake up and smell the coffee. I would love for Rafa to succeed and I do truly believe he is doing what he thinks is best for the club and the team but im afraid to say its not working! </span>
<span style=""> </span>
<span style="">Im sorry but we should not use Lucas as an escape goat but he is just not good enough. He has got better this season and im not blaming him as a player he is playing to his best ability the thing is his ability is not good enough. He adds nothing to the team, he cant pass, shoot, tackle or head the ball and is slow!</span>
<span style=""> </span>
<span style="">Rafa is a poor manager of players, Im not being funny but WTF happened regarding Robbie Keane. Don’t get me wrong I don’t think we should have spent that amount of money on him and I believe there must have been better options available but at the end of the day we got him. Now he didn’t play as well as he can or should off but when he did have a glimpse of becoming good Rafa dropped him. The same can be said with Babel. Yes he shouldn’t moan but when has he had a good chance in his preferred position as a striker?!</span>
<span style=""> </span>
<span style="">To me Rafa has is favourites and no matter how they play they will not be dropped which is wrong.</span>
<span style=""> </span>
<span style="">I have to agree with JK regarding Benny Onion why is he not used more behind Torres and Stevie back in the middle. This makes much more sense. There are so many other formations and team selections Rafa should try but he never will and that’s his main downfall, his stubbornness. </span>
<span style=""> </span>
<span style="">I hope he does turn things around for the sake of the club but if we continue to play like this then at the end of the season he must go.</span>
<span style=""> </span>
<span style="">Oh and please stop comparing him to Alex Ferguson and how he had a bad season but then we all know what happened next. Its under completely different circumstances! </span>

Guest said...

And imagine, we are LIVERPOOL! Have our sights gone so low that top 4 is our goal now? DO NOT ACCEPT 2ND BEST. Time for him to go. WE DEMAND EXCITING< ATTACKING FOOTBALL AND THE BEST MOST SKILLFUL PLAYERS TO PLAY. Instead ofD.Kong on th ewing, week in , week out GRRRRRRRR

jez said...

jaime
greetings to you on this 7th miserable day of the season
your posts feel rough on occasional win days but seem to hit home on these increasing lose days
benitez is possibly the most frustrating manager to follow - as you loudly proclaim
i know we'll end up with a 2nd half of season, but that will not mask what should have been so much more after last years fabulous run...
benitez has to kop the flak for that.
i wonder if theres power struggles going on behind the scenes ?
great to see us lose no ground on knobs from ot, hope knobs from sb follow suit tomorrow...
reina
johnson carra agger aurelio
gerrard mascherano
kuyt benayoun riera
torres
need new quality striker - ruud van niistelroy ? bloody ell...
david villa would fit nicely in santas sack if we can get some tarp funding from our fucking yankie pricks !!
wolves to get a 2-2 at anfield eh ?
xxx

Guest said...

Please GOD let this be true. Its just depressing now.

Jack said...

pple kept saying portmouth nearly held chelsea to a draw...but the fact is they lost. Liverpool also nearly won the game at anfield but does it matter? what matters most is the 3 points, minimum a 4th spot (can't believe I'm saying that after what happen last season) we are fighting for 4th and way off the mark. Aston Villa just won their game and Arsenal right now is leading, spurs and city won their games tonight. So I guess we'll need  a miracle just to get back into top 4. but guess you are right about one part, we need 'someone to get on board to reignite our season'

Jaimie Kanwar said...

Comparing Benitez to Ferguson is pointless.  Ferguson had already won countless league titles by that time; he has the right to have a bad season; he has the right to do whatever he wants basically because he has PROVED time and time again that he has what it takes to succeed in the league.

Guest said...

Yes Gus or Jose please. Even if the have NO MONEY to spend I AM SURE a positive manager could play a better attacking formation and get results. I think a man motivator would make A HUGE DIFFERENCE.

Guest said...

Benitez is utterly utterly....USELESS!!!!  we need Mourinho, and we need him NOW!!!!

Big Man said...

Rafa must shoulder the blame for another lack-luster performance - his defence minded tacticts are ruining our chances of qualifying for the CL next season. He persists with under-performing players and does nothing to inspire or motivate his players. The team results are inconsistent - it simply not good enough - several players today were not fit to wear the red shirt. Thank god the Stretford Rangers also lost (by more goals!!) I think Rafa will have to take a long hard look at the situation - the original article by Jamie is absolutely spot on - it really says it all as far as I'm concerned!

Guest said...

YEs tell them Jamie. RB gives and excuse and the blind run with it like a hungry dog with a bone. STOPE BEING BLIND RAFA LOVERS> Jamie is on the money with his assessment. We were poor. The team selection was a joke. Benny is prob thinking he should leave and who can blame him?

Guest said...

I absolutely dispise these benitez lovers,you see with these idiots it's all about supporting benitez 1st LFC 2ND, THE man never never ever does anything wrong in their eyes,these so called supporters by giving benitez their total support even when the man is performing terrible, they are playing a huge part in keeping him at the club 2 months ago they were shouting down us anti benitez brigade saying rafa will save us just you wait and see, well all I can is us sinking deeper and deeper in the quick sand, now rafa worshipers A REALITY CHECK FOR YOU, IF WE LOSE TO VILLA we are then 11pts behind them if spurs win on the same day we go 9pts behind them, are only hope left is europa league, even then face facts arsenal leaping ahead man city will soon be out of sight if fulham and birmingham win games in hand we are in the bottom half, GET IT INTO YOUR SKULLS WE ARE IN FREE FALL, WE START THE REBUILDING YES REBUILDING, WITH A NEW MANAGER WHO CAN HOPFULLY DO SOME WHEELING AND DEALING IN JANUARY

Allys Shrimp said...

Yes! Two holding MF is the problem. And yes, Lucas is only part of that problem, What is driving me crazy, and I think soon almost every LFC fan in the world, is that he`s still playing them. Game after game. Its NOT working. And someone needs to tell Rafa this before its too late, This is like a nightmare, a bad dream.

Guest said...

How can Rafa start with Dossena !! Is he trying to market him off to Italian sides watching? The left side was totally dead possibly making Mascherano going into dangerous tackles due to frustration that the side is not clicking..Any fool knows that with Benayoun available there is no reason to put Dossena there..Also why leave Fabio Aurelio out when he performed so well against Wigan? saving him for Wolves?

kazzak said...

I am not going to get on the band wagon about getting Rafa out but from the line you can see exactly what Jaime is referring to in terms of a defensive line up.  If Babel (i am not a great fan) is on the bench then surely he has to get the nod ahead of dossena.  If aurelio is on the bench then surely he has to nod ahead of insua.  Aurelio delivery from set piece and crossing is exactly what we need and to put him on the bench does not make sense.  Babel brings his pace into the equation that we are sorely lacking.  If Aquillani is not playing then I would like to see gerrard in midfield alongside masch with benayuon preferred as the supporting role.

Rafa claims the red card was the turning point but I would like to think that the turning point was rafas decision to not bring in a proper strike force to back up torres.  let me remind everyone crouch, bellamy and keane have all been let go, need I say anymore.  It was rafa's inabiltilty to manage these guys that is partly to blame for not winning the league last year and the decision to bring in a player that he had no intention of playing until jan 2010.  The reality is that we do not have many choices except bringing in youngsters and looking at rafas position on using youth that aint happening.  I like johnson but we should not have payed more than 10-12m and he has been unfortunate in the last couple of games.

Lets push johnson into midfield and play carragher/kelly at right back with kuyt on the bench as a back up striker/10,000 meter athelete.  How about pacheco on the bench?

Come on rafa even the most ardent rafa trusting lfc fans will start to turn if you do not swallow your pride, stop the tinkering and play your best players from the start in their best positions

Guest said...

I have always been inclined to support Benitez - and I guess that is still my inclination - but he is definitely not helping his cause. Even I scratched my head today. The decision to play Dossena ahead of Benayoun or Babel is just beyond me. That said, the players lacked energy and just seemed to be resigned to defeat. Is this the manager's fault? I really don't know the answer to that because the current malaise is a more recent development. Anyway, I suspect you'll have a few more people sympathising with you this time around Jamie. Losing is one thing - losing without a fight is quite another. Not sure where it will all end up but we're half way through the season and all is not yet lost. Chin up.

Scoot said...

i think he was refering to the first 7 years red-nose fergie was at utd.

Scoot said...

lucas is just the scapgoat for many. he has improved alot. but to have 2 df, it's not helping out the attacking dept. i'll hold on to that boy as cover though. and kuyt deserves to be dropped for a good 5 games. terrible all season.

Scoot said...

it doesn't help that not one player on the pitch was encouraging any other. their moral has hit rock bottom!!

Guest said...

seconded -kanwar = shame of lfc

kazzak said...

the same real madrid that let bosque despite winning the league. 2 years consecutively.  I wouldn't read anything into that.  Besides if they wanted Rafa I am sure they would have got him by now.

Guest said...

Man City sack Hughes !! Any body fancy him at Anfield ?!?

Guest said...

Dalglish can step into the role for the remainder of the season, like Gus at Chelsea. See how it goes, if it doesn't work out he can always step back in the summer. The players will fight for Kenny way more than for the spanish waiter with no ideas, no passion and no clue.

kazzak said...

NO

Guest said...

We're gonna lose a lot more than his current contract, and at the rate he's going, we might not even make the Europa league.

Guest said...

Well anyone's got to be better than Benitez!  We're desperate now! You could put Stevie Wonder in charge! Even he could see things more clearly than rafa!

Guest said...

WELL SAID! BRING BACK THE KING!!!

Jake said...

I suppose there is one plus point about Masch being sent off and being banned for four games Aqualani should surely start now?! Then again we are talking about Rafa, probably start with Aurelio lol

Guest said...

Surely the players are at least partially to blame. Agger has a free header cant hit the target from 5 yards , for some reason Torres dosnt shoot when clean thru and Mash throws in that terrible chalenge. Not one player could leave that pitch with there heads held high. Agreed Benitez is not helping himself with that selection but its about time some of the players held there hands up to

Guest said...

BENITEZ....PLEASE GO BACK TO SPAIN NOW!!!!!

Jake said...

Yes I think this would be the best option if Kenny would do it. If not even Sammy Lee would do a better job at picking the team and motivating the players!

Guest said...

Gutted. I've always tried to get behind Benitez but have had enough. Not because of his team baffling team selection, and not even for his absolute unwillingness to shoulder any responsibility, but I can no longer defend his absolute tactical inflexibility. What did he do to change things effectively in the second half? NOTHING!!! and frankly it's not just today, but his inability to react to events is appalling. I think Hiddink or Mourinho HAVE to be the solution.

Oh god not Klinnsman though!!

Guest said...

Is right mate. Best thing I've heard on here.

digger said...

ok, ive always been pro rafa, but now enough is enough.

you could play mash and alonso because yes alonso hung back but had the ability to play people in from his own half.
lucas does not, lucas was brought as a box to box player, a play maker, but after 3 years of playing as a DM he is now just another mash, but shit.

we either need to bring beanyoun into the middle and play kuyt as a forward, or play lucas as an attacking midfielder (like he did against newcastle) or just fuck off andd let someone else do it.

also reina is shit, we need diego to be in goal

Guest said...

AND DON'T EVER COME BACK...UNLESS IT'S TO MANAGE MAN UNITED!

Gäst said...

Spot on. You wrote what I was thinking. Really hope Liverpool are as serious as City and do something about our situation.

navofarabia said...

Last year was evidence my friend! How many goals did we score??

You still overlook the fact that the Mancs wanted Fregie out as he made lots of 'mistakes' and look what happened.

Rafa will come good if our so called fans allow it! YNWA!

poloy said...

maybe this is why the club claims to have no money, it's either the owners really don't, or they don't want to give Rafa any because they know he's just going to throw it away.

kazzak said...

Actually, we missed an opportunity to get Mancini instead of exteding Rafas contract

Guest said...

Evert football game I get, Dirk Kuyt has and will always be the first player I'd sell...

navofarabia said...

Fergie was going to be sacked BEFORE he won the league....look at his league finishes even after spending loads of money!  The Manc wanted him out before success hit old trafford!!! Fergie also needed 8-9 years before bringing the likes of Scoles, Beckam etc through the ranks...look at LFC we have many class youngsters coming through thanks to Rafa!

Rafa too deserves another year at least...but I too will concede his position will become v difficult if we finish out of the top four!

Being wanted by Madrid doesnt make him the best coach...but makes him ONE of the best coaches out there!! FACT

Fellow LFC fans it is v hard to take we are all feeling the pain but I implore you to keep the faith!

Jake said...

I think Hiddink would be a better option. He is currently a free agent and after a taster season with Chelsea would love the chance to get his hands into the EPL again. Jose would be a good option too, however for him to leave we would have to pay inter and pay off Rafa (not happening im afraid)

liverpoolfan1970 said...

Jaime, 
as much as I hate to admit it, you are right.  I've bashed you on here in the past, but you are right.  The defense has been crap this year and the only difference is the addition of Johnson.  
It was said back in the summer that yes, Aquaman is quality, but if he should remain out longer than expected, or pick up another long term injury then Rafa had handed his critics a stick with which to beat him.  Guess what?  The beating has begun.  
If I owned the club I'd be calling up Jose M, Guus H. and Martin O'Neill, in that order (I don't think Guus would take the job, but it's worth a try).  Martin O'Neill has spent less than Rafa and has steadily improved Villa.  I can only imagine what he would do at Anfield.  

Big Man said...

All those 'in Rafa we trust' morons need to wake up and smell the coffee!! He will never win us the EPL with his mindset as it is! Sorry Rafa,  you need to move over and let someone in who can lift the team - you are a demotivational influence and have instilled nothing but a losing mentality in some of the players! Perhaps MON is the man for the job??

shaun said...

This guy has hit every nail on the head. I have never agreed with someone so much. I think it is defiantely time to ditch Benitez. If we were to get rid of him now it would be 3 years to late forme. He has done nothing to push this team on. THe side lacks inventiveness. We are just chugging along and dont expect alot from our team these days. Lets get the pride back in Liverpool and sack that spanish waiter and get in Jose!!! or Klinsman

notmany holes said...

1  we finished second under rafa in may

2 is it rafa's fault that glenn johnson,agger,insua, were useless today?
 He's playing defensive wide-midfielders because his full backs can't be trusted.Gerrard is sulking around with a face like a smacked arse.

3 We're not going to get Mourhino (not enough money) ,Hiddink (wife doesn't want it) ,O'Neill ( will probably have CL football at Villa) 

Guest said...

the millions we will pay in compo is prob no more than Rafa would spend on (yet another) signing and then probably NOT play him so whats the diff? Robbie keane? Babel? Aquilani ? The list goes on and on.

PompeyRat said...

A couple o things.. Johnson, even though a right-back, can not really be described as "defensive minded".. nor can Kuyt...
Pompey are NOT the team with the worst defensive record in the league.. FAR from it..
We've let in 26 goals, EVERY other team under 11th place has let in more. Even Man City and Sunderland have shipped more.
However, we were very glad that you didn't play Bennybaboon from the start cos he's quality.
I had a feeling we'd win today.. The Prem is much closer this season than ever before, and no team has the right to EXPECT that they wil beat any other team... As you will nod odubt have noticed Manure also got spanked today...

Guest said...

This makes a lot of sense

Guest said...

Benitez can leave and take Donkey Kong with him. Im sick of seeing this ginger twat running up and down the pitch like a headless chicken. Coca cola league player. Get rid.

Gäst said...

I agree, today it was clear that Benitez not is the right man.

mo said...

this is the time, the team and manager needs fans to stay behind them and support them. there is no point to sack the manager in middle of season. and all those name mentnioned like Jose or MON are not going to come right now as their tema are in different competition so lets be rational and supprt our team regardless.
in regard to Jamie, you said you had been saying the same thing for 4 years and for me last four years had been positiive and good considering we had not have same finanicial muscle of Mna U and Chelsea.  
lets be postivie and support our team, as otherwise the situation will be worse for all of us.

Jake said...

<p><span style="">Pompey Rat you are still bottom of the league and you would expect a team challenging for fourth position if not the top spot should be beating the team at the bottom of the table. Utd lost today at a good Fulham side and with a make shift defence bit of a difference.</span>

Guest said...

no true fan should show loyalty to a manager your loyalty should be LFC,  it does not matter what a manager ,player, coach , groundsman, tealady, managing director, has done in the past, the past belongs to the history channel it's gone it's done FINNEETO, get my drift, it only matters what you are doing today thats how you should be judged, over the past few months liverpool are showing RELEGATION FORM, DID YOU HEAR THAT R-E-L-E -G-T-I-O-N form so benitez lovers O TO HELL WITH YOU; I was going to say somthing else but your not worth my time, SO FOR THE SAKE MY CLUB LFC BENITEZ JUST GO, you've lost the plot go and distroy another club but leave my blovered LFC alone.

theycallmemrBurt said...

We are not getting the rub of the green.  Mainly because were not really giving luck a chance.  Benitez has to stop being so controlling with his selection and tactics and let GOOD PLAYERS PLAY.

If I ever see Insua again....i'll....I'll... >:o >:o

GET A FLIPPIN SETTLED BACK FOUR (that doesn,t contain insua!)

Arbeloa was very underated for us.

Guest said...

1. No trophy for 2nd place.

2. still too defensive, no quality chances. According to rafa we were doing good in the 1st half, just because you have possession and make consecutive short passes doesnt make it a good performance.

3. I'd avoid high profile names personally because they don't really do to well when there's no money. I'd look at managers like Roy Hodgson, doesn't have a lot of money but look at what he's done with Fulham.

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longchalk said...

hi guys this is my first post 

I hope im objectivelly pasionate about lfc as much as a lfc fan can be! 
I was at the blackburn game the 1st half was the worst ive seen ever - make no mistake trully awful none of them wanted the ball it was shamefull,
 the game v  arsenal was almost as bad
, time and time again we sit bak after getting a goal and no suprise we blow it!
now another pitifull effort today against the bottom feeder team
a sad marker for us Im affraid - again NO ONE WHANTS THE BALL! any one who does make effort is not supported a lack of application from the collective.
Its no one individual its a lapse of team effort . motivation? this should not be an issue if anyone needs motivation they should be motivated right out the bloody door , not enough 'over my dead bosdy attitude' from far to many players. glen johnson was at fault today for the goal and many other mistkes , hes not alone.
even my wife can see how bad we r, she said rafa wants the sack so he can get a pay off and 'f' off somewhere else!
i dissmissed that when she said it weeks ago, however now 
it so bad I pondered its logic for a moment ?
Such elementary tactics  get u nowhere(houlier/erricson)
No wonder Ian st John was in tears at the end vrs arsenal on sky sports - jesus i felt like weeping myself.
 i dont like the looks of it at all
I dont see a manager change as agood thing however any more of this and perhaps he needs to do the honurable thing and It may require firm gentle perssuasion howver i do hope its not the case, im running out of hope rafa u need to show your good enough and show the bloody door to the shower of feckless players you endure

poloy said...

Fabio Capello was there a few years back as well

neil said...

Trying to be constructive. Our left side could do with a revamp. Insua needs to be loaned out to gain experience, Dossena hopefully will go back to Italy giving us much needed funds, Babel I think is more of a striker than winger, Aureilio is quality but injury prone.
I would bring in Cissosko and Silva. I would also look to sign a defensive, good in the air left back for the tough uncompromising games against the likes of Man Utd,Stoke(away),Bolton(away) and Chealsea. A back up quality striker would also be very nice, Villa? 
We need investment in the team, we cannot keep selling our best players and buying a player that we hope will be just as good. That policy gets you nowhere. We have to sell our weaker ones and buy good quality ones. If we sell Mascherano and buy Parker, it has been touted, we will slip even further behind. Just a few good signings away from having a excellent squad, just a shame we couldnt get them in the summer.
Rafa can attract these players remember, I do fear a mass exodus though if Benitez was to go, especially Torres,Reina,Mascherano and Rieara. 
                               
                                      
     

Jaimie Kanwar said...

This is a the typical argument of the blind-fath apologist. There's no valdity in comparing Ferguson and Benitez's first years:

Man U were in a far worse position when Ferguson arrived than when Benitez arrived.  Ferguson had to deal with a widespread drinking culture and major player indiscipline behind the scenes.  Man U under Ron Atkinson were underachieving playboys, just like the manager himself.  When Benitez arrived, Liverpool was, thanks to Houllier, a professional and well-organised club.  I could go on about the reasons why such a comparison is invalid but to be honest, I can't be bothered.

poloy said...

except that Aquilani's injured.....again.

Nobbs said...

Rafa, pls walk alone

poloy said...

I wonder why Agger is not tried at left back? Very good defender, decent ball control and is capable of going forward.

Kurtis said...

You're being harsh on Benitez.

Your critizing him about him being too defensive, but isn't this the same manager who led us to our highest points tally ever in the PL last season (we also got the most goals)?

Fair enough, Lucas and Masch in the middle together are useless against the smaller teams, but they work wonders against the likes of United/Chelsea/Arsenal, but what other choice did he have? Aquilani was out with a calf injury and he had nobody else.

Benayoun is a regular starter, so your wrong about that. I'll agree with you about Glen though, bad move. I would have kept Arbeloa for the season then let his contract run out.

Kuyt and Johnson are not defensive type players, so make that 6.

Yes, playing a 442 would of been better, but you know he is sucsessful with the 4-2-3-1, so he reverted to that understandably.

Aurelio can whip a good ball in, I dont see your problem.

And finally, your forgetting this is the same team that smashed the mancs 4-1 at OT and Madrid 4-0. With the exception of Alonso, Arebloa and Hyypia (who didn't play anyway). He had no trouble motivating the players last season, so why is it so bad this season? It's because of the hard time he is getting from the media and the owners. It's having a bad effect on him, which then puts a bad effect on the players.

It's a sad day for Liverpool FC when the greatest fans in the world, can not give Rafael Benitez the opportunity to turn things around, a right he has clearly earned and deserves.

Rets said...

Fantasy:
Let's change the Liverpool team : Aim - Remove undeserving overpaid players/staff, replace them with cheaper players from teams below Pool in the premiership table

Out: Rafa Benitez,+/- American Owners,P Reina,Insua,
G Johnson,Aurelio,Skrtel,Degen,Dossena,Kyrgiakos,Lucas,
Mascharano,Damian Plessis,Babel,El Zhar,Aquilani,Ngog,Voronin,Kuyt,Torres (tough one, but usu injured,wage bill v high)

In: Kenny Dalglish, +/- new owners
GK: Thomas Sorensen
Defenders: Turner,Shawcross,Hangeland,Stephen Warnock
Midfielders: David Dunn,Clint Dempsey,Damien Duff,N Zogbia,Andy Reid
Strikers: (I wanna stress that Pool shld have gotten M Owen when he was free)Darren Bent,Zamora,C Cole

Keep: +/-Carragher, +/- Agger, Benayoun, Riera, S Gerrard, Nemeth(one for the future, why did we loan him out?)

Yes we can! With this new team, we may be able to find 20mil to sack Rafa, stave off bankruptcy and at least maintain current mediocre league position.

tonythetruth said...

jamie i have had my email address ever since the night i stood in the olympic stadium in athens and watched this defensive minded idiot play zenden as a third full back hence my benitezout address  please please please do the decent thing and walk now 

saffa said...

Credit to Rafa for what he has done to the club, but I think it's time for him and us to part our ways. This was embarasing for a Liverpool fan, and Portsmouth deserved their win. I was at Anfield on Weds against wigan, and we started with 8 defensive players. He then took Benayoun off, who was our only attacking player. Gerrard has been a disgrace this year.

Guest said...

 Errr....in Raffa we loveeeee???? Rafaaaaa Benitezzzzzzzzzz!

Guest said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Guest said...

Jaimie you really are none too bright! You are so anxious to try and force the facts to fit the conclusion you have already come to, you even contradict yourself on several occasions.
One minute you argue the line-up is overly defensive (and cheekily attempt to include Kuyt as a defensive player), THEN you tell us Johnson is no defender but is good going forward. So which is it? Is he a defender when you want to say we are too defensive, and then an attacker when you want to say we can't defend??? Poor attempt.
You complain Benayoun was left out - give us a rating our of ten for his performance today? He played 40 mins and did next to nothing.
You argue Benitez shouldn't have changed a winning team - so Torres should have started on the bench today and Ngog as CF???? Ummmmm no.
You obviously don't know much about the game: You ask why he brought on Aurelio - simple; Insua was not playing brilliantly, Aurelio gets forward more plus has great delivery from set pieces. Had he taken off any of Torres, Kuyt, Benayoun or Gerrard he would have been weakening the team, so his best option was to bring on a defender who can get forward, deliver the ball into the box and score from set pieces.

Finally it is your last paragraph which tells us why we should ignore all the rest of your arguments: You have been saying to get rid of Benitez for 4 years and now you want to say "I told you so"?! So when you started saying to ditch Benitez he had just made us European Champions! If you bother to read what you wrote in those days, your (predictable) argument was that he didn't care about the Prem. We have improved in the league every year, culminating in our best points total for 20 years last season, 86. If you have been saying to get rid of Benitez for 4 years, then you are a fool - he has been making progress every year and last year made us contenders again.
There were 3 key incidents today: Gerrard gave the ball away cheaply for their goal, Mascherano got sent off and Agger missed a simple header. I'm pretty sure that none of those 3 mistakes were instructions from the coach!!!
The reality is that last season we were at our best for 20 years and very little has changed. If we had won the title for several of those 20 years, you could argue that Benitez has taken us backwards. The fact is that during the Souness, Evans and Houllier eras we were nowhere near the title and Benitez made us genuine contenders. Sure this has been a difficult season but now is the time to have faith in the club and lift the players' confidence, not throw out the baby and the bathwater at the first sign of trouble.

Guest said...

Would that be the MON who has won NOTHING? Who finished 6th last year after having a golden opportunity to finish 4th as Arsenal had such a poor season. Incidentally they stood by Wenger and look at them this year.

Guest said...

Mourinho wouldn't touch a club with so little money. Klinsmann managed to get sacked from Bayern because he did so poorly in a one-horse race.

poloy said...

I disagree about Benayoun, he's not even started consistently enough compared to Lucas and Kuyt.

I agree that Kuyt is not a defensive player, but he is also an occassional offensive player. Naturally a striker but does not consistently score.

As far as motivation, your guess is as good as mine, although inconsistency and consecutive losses can obviously do that.




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Nip said...

Sack him now FFs. He will send us back 8 years in the past. He is outdated. Always plays defensive and can't send any motivation to the team. Rafa we love you but now the fans are turning there back same as you did to some good lads you have and had in your squad.

Hope the storm will pass soon.

A Maltese fan

Guest said...

Nonsense Jaimie - Liverpool were all over the place when Benitez arrived. We had two players, Owen and Gerrard, both of whom were thinking seriously bout leaving and one of them did go. We had a very poor squad. The comparison with United is actually a very fair one, especially in terms of personnel with Robson at the centre of things for them as Gerrard is for us. If you have been saying for 4 years to get rid of Benitez then you clearly don't know what you're talking about. Last year was our best ever in the Prem and 6 months later you're panicking! If Benitez has genuinely lost the dressing room then there is a reason for him to go as such situations cannot be recovered. However the squad, tactics and training have changed very little from those which took us to 2nd last year.

Guest said...

He's played in every single game this season!

Guest said...

I have had enough of the turgid performances and crazy line ups. I just got back from the game and it was the most inspid display i have seen. Taxi for Rafa YNWA













1

Guest said...

86 points last year, our best finish for 20 seasons - enough evidence for you Jaimie?

Geraint said...

Of course it is Raffa's fault.  We finished second last year and threw away the league because of him wanting to take on Fergie.  He has bought poorly, does not look for attacking good football.  It reminds me of boring Arsenal in the 80's, defencive football but we are not defensively sound.  He has to go, how many chances does he get?  We are a pround football club that is severely in danger of dropping out of the top ten.  Total disaster this season, get rid of the fat spaniard.  In Raffa we trust - bull shit

Timeforchange said...

<span style="font-family: arial; ">There seems to be negative consequences of being loyal supporters who support their manager through thick and thin, but at the same time seeming to accept our slide towards mediocrity as an effect of what has become "blind faith support". No other supporters at any other top club, whether that be Real Madrid, Barcelona, <span style="background-image: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; -webkit-background-clip: initial; -webkit-background-origin: initial; background-color: yellow; background-position: initial initial;">Bayern</span>, Milan, Inter or even Manure would accept such low standard performances, which are now being served up to Liverpool fans on a fairly regular basis, and have been for a while. 
It seems like Liverpool supporters have been brainwashed by the negative counter attacking style that we now use and forgotten we used to go out on to the pitch to play proper football not that long ago.  Which is how I remember Liverpool playing in at least thirty out of the forty odd years that I have been watching them play.
Liverpool and its supporters have now become the joke club that Man U were in the 70s and 80s, having gone almost 20 years without the title. The manager of any other top club would have been shown the door long ago. Supporters of every other elite club would never accept our situation - so why do the majority of our supporters give every Liverpool manager so much time in the job (unless he happens to give an interview to The Rag)? 
Top managers of today realise that they need to deliver titles quickly. Two or three trophy-less seasons is the maximum that any top manager could or should expect in a job of Liverpool's stature.
Have Liverpool fans, and in particular supporters of Rafael <span style="background-image: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; -webkit-background-clip: initial; -webkit-background-origin: initial; background-color: yellow; background-position: initial initial;">Benitez</span> and Gerrard <span style="background-image: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; -webkit-background-clip: initial; -webkit-background-origin: initial; background-color: yellow; background-position: initial initial;">Houllier</span> before him, become part of the symptoms of our slow demise as a top premiership club, by helping to keep managers in place for far longer than they should ever be employed in the job -  thus hindering the clubs progress in the long term? 
Part of the problem is that <span style="background-image: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; -webkit-background-clip: initial; -webkit-background-origin: initial; background-color: yellow; background-position: initial initial;">Benitez</span> supporters blame the owners for not totally supporting the manager financially. But while there is some truth to this excuse, <span style="background-image: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; -webkit-background-clip: initial; -webkit-background-origin: initial; background-color: yellow; background-position: initial initial;">Benitez</span> has had more cash to spend on players than any of his predecessors, most of our rivals, and wasted a lot of that money on substandard and injury prone additions to the squad - who we will now find it extremely difficult to move on to other clubs without incurring massive losses. Granted his transfer kitty has been reduced both this, and last season. However, he did have £40 Million to spend last Summer, but the squad/first team seems to have become worse instead of better, due to [...]

westy said...

Rafa simply has to go, the red card wasnt the turning point at tall, hes lost the players completety, we need a new owner with a new manager asap or we can forget finshing in the top 6 he has to go

Guest said...

yes this prob has some truth to it. they are saving the transfer kitty for the new guy.

sonic said...

he picked a terrible team to start off with,dossena in-yossi out...why ??? lucas centre-mid gerrard not...WHY ??? no plan b ?
i think theres no plan a at the moment,the team looks like theres no method to our attacking play,R/B continues to say we control games cos we put a 10-15 min spell together of defensive-midfield possesion together,we never pin teams back and control the game and have teams worried with our passing round the box cos he doesnt allow players to leave their positions and influence games when opportunities arise.hes happy to see them all play n do exactly as he say.
R/R doesnt seem to have any passion for the club,players or fans and everybody is realising that his attitude is "this is how I work so piss off"...
He talks too much bull afetr every bad performance as if were all stupid and dont realise that he team and un-motivated,lacking in confidence and i think the belief that the team as a whole when they take to the field is not one of a clear understanding of how we are going to go about beating the opposition.
its getting embarrasing for the team and supporters now and theres no hiding for him now,i think hes got a month or 2 to change the situation and put some confidence back into the team,supporters and the board or he "WILL" be sacked...100%.
it cannot go  on like this.money or no money to pay him off,were losing more than money at the moment and spiralling downwards like this needs to be halted sharpish no matter what the cost !!!
to be honest i hope he goes,simply because hes too set in his ways to change his tactical approach to football and we may improve but the drab defensive tactics and the "i do it my way" approach is just not what LFC is all about......enough is enough !!!!! Y N W A

Guest said...

The red card was deserved - and a stupid thing for mascherano to do (again)knowing how  important the game was to us.Last season 6 red cards were given in our favour, all for fouls on Alonso.......the reason because we/Xabi were controlling games and frustrating the opposition.Now all we do is hit long balls to Torres and hope hell get us a goal and it looks like Torres is majorly pissed off!!.All these supposed bad decisions against us are actually doing Rafa a favour and giving him excuses.Take the beach ball incident against Sunderland - They battered us and only for Bent having a bad day it could have been 3.0.I felt he had taken us as far as he could 2 years ago, and now we definately need a change.For his team selection It always seems like he plays Pro Evolution on the X-Box the night before a game and picks whoever is red(the fittest).And as for Kuyt (the right winger with no first touch that cant beat a man or cross a ball) being undroppable, he was dropped last year the week after he played up front and scored 2 against Wigan!! Wait hold on that doesnt make sense........... thats Rafa for u!

Guest said...

I have been a Liverpool fan for 38 years and can assure you that this is no knee jerk reaction.

This current Liverpool team is one of the worst I have see in all that time.

For a start, we spend too much time worrying about the opposition. We were playing the bottom team in the league for God's sake! But instead of going there to win the game, as usual, we went there no to lose. That is the fundamental difference between Man Utd, Arsenal Chelsea and us. They go out to win! We go out not to lose!

Our midfield today consisted of a defensive midfielder (Mascherano) a left back (Dossena) a work horse (Kuyt) and someone who has no defined role in the team (Lucas).

Once again we relied totally on 2 players, Gerrard and Torres for all our attacking threat/thrust.

We played the (in)famous Rafa system of 4 - 2 - 3 -1 once again without the players to do so, and once again it failed, miserably.

When we played this system last season, and for a couple of months it worked, this was mainly because Gerrard, Torres and Alonso found their best form, and, carried the rest of the team, making others, such as Lucas and Kuyt appear to be much better than they are. Now Gerrard and Torres are searching for form and fitness, and Alonso has gone, we can see the others for what they are - second rate!

Under Benitez we play the most defensively boring football I have seen a Liverpool team play.

His excuses are becoming laughable - today for example "we controlled the game and were a good team in the 1st half until the sending off (we were 1 - 0 down at the time!)" He is turning us into a laughing stock and even better he now has control over the football club!!

Not only won't we finish in the top four but we don't deserve to.

Despite this I will still support my football club, because I support the club not the manager in charge.

anteater said...

Kurtis, you claim that our team doesn't perform because of the media and the owners. May I suggest that you have some deeper thoughts about that? Or are you Rafa in disguise?

Devindar said...

Rafa is delusional.

First with his "guarantee" of a top 4 finish - this early on and with our form the way it is, that is crackpot material.

Now saying we were "good team" until the sending off. Anyone who says that was clearly watching a completely different game. We didn't even get a shot on target and I lost count of the number of wayward passes.

The bottom line is that the manager is not good enough and neither are the players. I would have to say, I even class Gerrard as not good enough these days.

anteater said...

Just like Benítez, Houllier has brought us pretty close to the title once. Hope you remember that. What you write makes no sense then either, does it.

lol said...

why do some fans keep backing rafa? He has lost the plot big time. look at the line up today what a joke. lucas, kuyt, dossena, insua are not even pl players let alone liverpool players! club needs to act now. martin o'neil in with jamie redknapp as right hand man.

Guest said...

I do remember it - Thompson was in charge for much of that season. We were a massive 7 points off the top and Houllier was given 2 more seasons in which  he finished 5th and 4th. He left us with 1 world-class player, Gerrard. Benitez has built a far better team.

Guest said...

do you actually watch liverpool?? As an individual player Lucas has been fantastic this season, better than masch for sure...the only problem is Rafa playing both him and masch in the same team!

Kushtrimgerrard said...

jaimie wrote a perfect description but i think were only talkin cuz rafa aint leaving.if our club presidents were football passionate they would sack him after sunderland game but they arent and fans cnt sack rafa for sure cuz we just cnt,i think we should make some banners that says in rafa we trust and under it bullshit, and we have to make some banners that rafa has lost it we have to be against this idiot ,hes the worst manager that liverpool had in its life time.i never saw a name lucas and insua winning anything the likes of lucas and insua they dnt desrve to play not even 3rd hand football we should sack rafa soon as possible before its too late before we fight of not being relegated just like newcastle,when i see lucas and insua in the first line up i always know that were screwed and seriously kuyt need 2 months vacation he is so tired he can barely run and aquilani wont fill the xabi boots rafa is makin another babel on the team and thats unfortunately aquilani the player that should played in the last 4 games but yeah its rafa and we want him out RAFA OUT.

Guest said...

Aquilani was out with a calf injury - so what - he wouldn't have played him anyway! He has said himself that he cant risk Aquilani unless we are 3-0 up in injury time and the opposition are down to 8 men! And as for the fact we had no one else - this is his 6th year in charge - surely by now we should have capable reserves!

And why has he earned the right to turn things around - because of a Champions League win 5 YEARS AGO! Don't forget - it was his team selection that put us 3-0 down in the first place, and his team selection and tactics that cost us the same cup 2 years later"!

Tactical genius - don't make me laugh

locky said...

The point in article i absolutely agree with is the astonishing lack of pace in the team. Watching us build up an attack is so grindingly frustrating its beyond belief. For the first 20 minutes we had plenty of the ball but were SO SLOW!!!! Plodding, pointless back passes, sideways passes, portsmouth could walk back to get behind the ball without breaking a sweat.

As i live in Australia now the Chelsea game was the first full 90 minutes
i got to see of the team. In that game it was the same, lots of the ball, but horribly slow play. Chelsea's first goal showed us up pace wise in attack and defence. A lost ball on halfway, played quickly to Drogba who raced to the byline, centred and Anelka finished. We never play with that speed. The Sunderland game? Their midfielders looked like racehorces compared to our undersized, slow lot.

Again and again we have the ball but  arse about with it.  Even Wigan mid-week were able to bypass our midfield a few times with sheer pace.

It's really simple. Benitez has to either have a personality transplant and start accepting his ideas are wrong and he has to change them, or he gets the boot. When things first started going wrong players had the air of,"it will sort itself out". Now they are openly frustrated, unfocused and utterly unwilling/unable to play for Benitez.

The broadcast here had Nigel Winterburn, Mark Bosnich and Robbie Slater commenting. By the end of the game, all 3 sounded like they had witnessed the death of the club.

poloy said...

Didn't say he didn't play, I wrote he didn't start consistently compared to Lucas and Kuyt.

Devindar said...

27pts in 18 games this season! That's the only statistic that matters! How long are we supposed to bask in our laurels of last year?

Anyone who looks back on last season with dreamy eyed visions is lowering the expectations of a great and glorious club. Let me remind you that last season, in reality, we won NOTHING! Is that evidence enough for you? You people are acting like we won the treble or something. Get a grip.

The only thing that matters is the here and now. And here and now we are appalling and we are going backwards.

All Rafa has ever done in 5 years is win the Champions League and an FA Cup with what was essentially Houllier's team. Since RB starting imposing his will on the club, we have won squat. How long are we going to allow him to experiment with our club before we see the light and say that anything less than winning the league is unacceptable?

Kurtis said...

You dont know shit.

Kurtis said...

Are you retarded or something? We was promised money after we signed Aquilani which we didn't get, with that money we was going to get someone like Upson [but instead we got that greek], Cattermole and Cartlon Cole/RVN. But alas, we have no money, so what was we going to buy them with, magic fucking beans?

anteater, all the players hear nowadays in the papers is 'Rafa's time is surely up', 'Rafa cant manage', etc. Surely that effects them?  If that is all that is shoved down there throats it's obviously going to have a negative effect, which it does, so they underperform. You cant argue that when all you hear about is the man you work for is under pressure it dosen't make a difference?

And about the yanks, with tales of them at each others throats, uncertainty over ownership, Players being sold and the money disappearing to fund for our on-going debt, etc. This Uncertainty has to be seen as having a negative impact on the club. I mean lets be honest it's hardly going to instill belief and confidence is it?

Devindar said...

But something HAS changed hasn't it? We couldn't possibly have gone from how we were playing last season to this schoolboy level that we're playing now if "the squad, tactics and training have changed very little from those which took us to 2nd last year".

Read more: http://www.liverpool-kop.com/2009/12/forget-red-card-rafa-benitez-is.html#ixzz0aB2Yq6QO

Devindar said...

But something HAS changed hasn't it? We couldn't possibly have gone from how we were playing last season to this schoolboy level that we're playing now if "the squad, tactics and training have changed very little from those which took us to 2nd last year". 

Devindar said...

If we had attacking, creative players, we wouldn't need Lucas.

iman said...

rafa has got to go! hes getting blur and soon blind and his mind is not straight. spent 20million pound on a player and trying hard not to field him. Benayoun has been impressive and yet benched him and kyut is simply irreplaceable even if he plays bad.. wake up! we have a lot of star in the academy to partner torres, the like of dani,esscelton, the loaned nemeth... use them! the defeat by portmouth say it all.. and then bring on spearing.. scaryyy., top four is way of target, now it's a fight for survival to stay in the premier leauge.

Devindar said...

"the players lacked energy and just seemed to be resigned to defeat. Is this the manager's fault?"

YES.

I mean, I know all the players are well paid, professional adults and really should be self motivated but, in every professional's career, they will eventually hit a black spot and it is the manager's job to help lift them out of that.

The problem is that Benitez doesn't seem to know how to do that. He appears to communicate with his players via the media.

Devindar said...

"It's a sad day for Liverpool FC when the greatest fans in the world, can not give Rafael Benitez the opportunity to turn things around, a right he has clearly earned and deserves"

An LFC has only one loyalty and that is to the club.

Exactly how has RB earned or deserved the right to turn things around? What has he ever won us other than the CL and FA Cup in his first year with Houllier's team? He has neither earned or deserved anything for getting us into second last season.

Guest said...

Jaimie, quite clearly you don't like Rafa. Some of your arguments have merit, however statements such as Kuyt being more like a defensive right mid are a bit exaggerated. Rafa is stubborn (which is a bit annoying), BUT he is a great manager. Look at his achievements with Valencia. Plus, anyone who managed a team with Traore and Smicer to win the champions league is a magician.
To criticise from a far is an easy task. In writing these articles of Rafa bashing, it would be nice to suggest ideas. Say we do sack Rafa - who would you replace him with? Mourinho (not going to happen - not enough money and he will end up at old trafford), King Kenny (again, not going to happen)?

Jaimie Kanwar said...

Do some research - I have suggested numerous ideas for improvement including who I think should take over and why.  Instead of accusing me of 'Rafa bashing' (which it isn't), perhaps you should be more realistic about our current situation.

And don't try and turn this into something personal - I don't 'like' Rafa?!  Like has nothing to do with it; I am interested only in his managerial style and approach; it has nothing to dow with persona feelings.  Criticism does not  = dislike, no matter how vociferous it might be.

Guest said...

A fans request

Confidence is the bottom line in every walk of life, without confidence you usually fail in what you are working towards ... what I believe we are seeing is a lack of confidence, not from the fans but from the players, top players will only stay if you are winning trophies every year, alonso moved on, mascha wants to go .. others I'm sure will consider there future if we don't improve. We as a club need to take a long hard look at the club and the setup on the pitch (player, coaches and manager).

The days are gone for blaming the owners, there is no player-passion at our club any longer, after 40 years as a faithful fan, I'm gobsmacked at the lack of pride when the players wear the great Liverpool shirt, is this the players fault or the managers fault, it doesn't matter, change is needed, we are a big club and to be fair to Rafa he has been good for the club and I thank him ... but like all managers and players gone, we missed them but moved on.

Looking at the table we are beginning to see the potential for LFC to not finish in the top four and lets be realistic, without a turn of fortune we are looking like its going to be an up-hill battle, is this a disaster for LFC, NO not yet but lets be sure we all honour the club we love so much and do the right thing for the club. Rafa is now at a point were he will be considering his future, he has said its ok not to finish in the top four, I'm not sure most fans would agree, I don't... and I do not believe the players we have are as bad as we are playing ... Rafa, please take a long hard look at your style and consider if you can make some changes to this style, something that brings back the passion and drive, if not, maybe its time we thank you for your service to this great club and stand aside for another, either way, change is needed, don't get stuck just please make the change that is needed, if you can't, with respect please let someone else!

RR

ReikiRebel said...

A fans request

Confidence is the bottom line in every walk of life, without confidence you usually fail in what you are working towards ... what I believe we are seeing is a lack of confidence, not from the fans but from the players, top players will only stay if you are winning trophies every year, alonso moved on, mascha wants to go .. others I'm sure will consider there future if we don't improve. We as a club need to take a long hard look at the club and the setup on the pitch (player, coaches and manager).

The days are gone for blaming the owners, there is no player-passion at our club any longer, after 40 years as a faithful fan, I'm gobsmacked at the lack of pride when the players wear the great Liverpool shirt, is this the players fault or the managers fault, it doesn't matter, change is needed, we are a big club and to be fair to Rafa he has been good for the club and I thank him ... but like all managers and players gone, we missed them but moved on.

Looking at the table we are beginning to see the potential for LFC to not finish in the top four and lets be realistic, without a turn of fortune we are looking like its going to be an up-hill battle, is this a disaster for LFC, NO not yet but lets be sure we all honour the club we love so much and do the right thing for the club. Rafa is now at a point were he will be considering his future, he has said its ok not to finish in the top four, I'm not sure most fans would agree, I don't... and I do not believe the players we have are as bad as we are playing ... Rafa, please take a long hard look at your style and consider if you can make some changes to this style, something that brings back the passion and drive, if not, maybe its time we thank you for your service to this great club and stand aside for another, either way, change is needed, don't get stuck just please make the change that is needed, if you can't, with respect please let someone else!

RR

Guest said...

I'm sorry but if you are goin to critisize anyone defensivly today, other than johson it has to be agger, one of the worst defesnive performances ive seen for a long time, as a centre bkhe was NOWHERE for the first goal, and he was made to look a fool for the second

Guest said...

Benitez is useless my friend... In 5 years he never managed to build a squad...... bench is useless... half of his buys were useless my friend

Jaimie Kanwar said...

Liverpool were NOT all over the place!  Stop exaggerating.  Owen left; Gerrard stayed. Big deal.  The squad was NOT poor'.  You are clearly brainwashed if you truly believe that.  The squad benitez took over included Gerrard, Carragher, Hyypia, Hamann, Kewell, Henchoz, Dudek, Finnan, Riise, Cisse and Baros.  Then there were players like Sinama Pongolle, Le Tallec, Diao, Cheyrou, Biscan etc, but how are they any worse than the likes of Lucas, Degen, Voronin, Dossena, Insua et al?!

This myth about the squad really irritates me as it's just not true in any way, shape or form.

Guest said...

History will never repeat it self.. It doesn't mean that if sir alex Ferguson was going to be sacked at the mancs and then after he won so many trophies, means that our stupid manager if he's going to be sacked (I WISH) and if not he will bring glory to this glorious club... Benitez is afraid of playing against everybody... He just Suck and please forget about second places. Yo just get nothing for second places... all the LFC supporters wants is Glory

anteater said...

So you really think the players read what the papers say. Don't make me laugh. They spend their time showing off their brainless arm-candy and spending their imense income on yet another car or whatever they feel they need to waste it on.

AlexStar said...

You have to know things are going badly when fans start suggesting managers like Roy Hodgson.

And why on earth would Martin O'Neil want to leave Aston Villa in order to come to Liverpool at the moment??? If you were him, would you do it??

Jose...well.. I hate to say it but maybe, maybe he is the only reasonable replacement at this point. After the world cup I would be pushing hard for Capello to come. I have a lot for time his managerial capabilities. He doesn't take any crap from his players and certainly there are no favourites unless a player earns that favouritism by showing 100% commitment (ie Beckham)

For now things are looking grim but still, I don't believe in the philosophy of sacking managers mid-season. The last thing we need right now is more instability.

Brad Joy-Clavis said...

The worst part about it all was the fact that when the players came out after half time, having had the chance to sit down, work things out and be ready to take the game to Pompey, instead they increased their level of whining and generally looked as if the game was already gone.

If you can't get fired up to overturn a losing match against the worst team in the league, what hope do you have for the rest of the season?

rich_chelt said...

the team was poor because of RAFA....it is his job to pick the team and to instruct the players simple as...all he seems to do is wave his silly arms about.how long before torres puts in a transfer request

anteater said...

Who trains him? Who picks him?

pool till i die said...

Jamie as i hate to agree with you (nothing personal btw) this time i think your right. I've been right behind rafa all the way until today and tbh I feel a bit shameful, disrespectful and more than anything else I feel that i'm going against the Liverpool code of turning against our manager at a time when he needs the support of all reds fans!

Let us not forget this is a man that has brought our club much success with a modest side that he inherited and i for one am not gonna forget what this man has done for our prestigious club! Yes I agree a lot has to be desired with some of his transfer activity and yes this has infuriated even the most loyal and level headed of us Liverpool supporters. It's amazing no one except your good self of course jamie was saying this last season when we were riding high!!

Now i didn't come on here to argue but just to voice my opinion and regretfully so i'm contradicting all what i just said and reluctantly i give in that our great club might need a change of management! Rafa i must apologise and i am sorry that it has come to this i really am. Your a loyal and a great servant. You need not of put up with the treatment messers dicks and gillet put you through. Such treatment was not justified not only to you but to all Liverpool supporters far and wide. It makes me sick to my stomach, God knows what SHANKS would think, he must be turning in his grave!!!

But in saying all that reality is reality and we are where we are.

Now comes the hard bit! Who do we bring in now to replace Benitez and how do we convince any manager with any sort of credentials to take over a club (that we all hold so dearly to our hearts) that is in complete meltdown. A club thanks to moores and parry that is in the hands of money grabbing yanks that have no emotional feelings what so ever for the club or the people but just to line their pockets with green!! A club that was promiseed a new 70,000 seater stadium by 2012 yet not one block has ever been laid! Mourinho doesn't want the job nor does who i think would truly serve our club justice, a certain mr hiddink, want the job. Simply because of messers dicks and gillet's unfulfilled fake promises!!

Our club needs change and I for one would love to see a bit of the old bootroom rejuvenated back into the club. This in turn i propose that we bring back King Kenny who might be not exactly up to scratch with the current game in terms of management strategies, diets bullcrap etc... But there is one such man that i think who could be a great acquisition to KK, who has plied his trade in lesser leagues and being very successful! More than anything else this person is a Liverpool great, a person that has tasted success in the past more than once. I for one think Steve Nicoll is an unsung hero for what he has achieved with lower ranked teams and is  a born winner which is something we undoubtedly need right now. KK and Stevie Nich surely have what it takes to turn our great club around. Forget money for a minute lets start with the basics..... Heart and Motivation!!

Am I alone here in my thoughts???

Guest said...

Poor squad this is a squad that in 2005 won the champs league! All inherited from houliier! Wake up benitez lover! >:o

stevo said...

the most boring negative manager in world football totally agree with everythin jamie said spot on!

Matty K said...

Unbelievable- just when you think it can't get worse. Why did Aquilani miss the action again?? Where the hell is Benayoun??? No disrespect to the opposition but these are the teams Liverpool should put away with ease & although looked the better team early i think the better team won & Mascherano deserved to be sent off- no excuses. Look awkward at the back & in the middle of the pitch Lucas ......is Lucas. Torres who must be considered a world class striker is getting such poor service his game is now scratchy. Benitez has always annoyed me with negative football -i mean- Liverpool score- then defend a 1-0 lead instead of going for 3-0. This is why we drew so many games last year-proved we could destroy the winners Spam Utd- who won- & lost more games than us-haha -what a joke. I don't like Spam Utd but they go for the jugular against these 2nd tier teams & put them away- proves its the way to win competitions. C'mon Rafa -we have a team that has proven it can beat every team- let them play attacking football & please start Benayoun instead of Lucas & can we see Aquilani- before i nickname him Loch Ness.

mikeyt said...

With Mark Hughes now free would Liverpool fans welcome him aboard the currently sinking ship?

Guest said...

If we were all over the place how did we win the CL and FA cup with a squad full of players from the Houllier era? We were a top 4 club in 2004. We currently are not anywhere near that. Benitez is taking us backwards not forwards.

And as Rafa has removed those players and brought in his own, we have won nothing and are now having our worst run for 50 YEARS with a squad full of HIS players. Wake up please!!!

SpecialKCKCKC said...

My advice to you Mr Kanwar is simply to believe.

Guest said...

And he got the boot for winning the league without style.

So i think anyone who's seen Rafa's teams play over the last 7 years knows what will happen if he ever managed Madrid. He'd get sacked after a year or 2 tops.

Matty K said...

Started well- did not score- opposition then deserved thier goal & the victory -Mash deserved to be sent off. Where the hell was Aquilani the $20 mill Loch Ness Monster & why did 1 of the premier leagues best attackers Benayoun not start- i think you need goals to win games. The negative approach like last season-lets score a goal then spend the rest of the game trying to defend it. Laughable when we smacked Spam Utd 2-0 who 1 the thing- only draws prevented Liverpool success. Shaky at the back, Lucas i stress is not worthy of a spot-start Benayoun & Aquilani in the middle (if he exists) to get some quality ball to Torres who is suffering in front of an unconfident, hesitant & at times negative team. If Rafa was a cat he's used 7 for me- loyal is my middle name & its Liverpool through the good & the bad but negative play & poor team choices have taken their toll......coach- stop looking at refs, bad luck & injuries & try the mirror-  theres your answer!

Guest said...

Haha Johnson is not a defensive minded player lol...err he's a right back..

What have we won with 4231? Nothing. It's not a proven formation theres no such thing its just one formation. There are others.

He's having trouble motivating the players because he slagged them off earlier this year and they are bored and tired of his methods and his refusal to adapt and change his failing approach.

Jaimie Kanwar said...

No way.  An ex-Manc running Liverpool?  It will never happen.

Guest said...

God you have to be retarded if you think average garbage like Cattermole, Upson and Carlton bloody Cole will turn us around. Those players should be within a mile of Anfield and if the manager wanted to sign them thank god the club didn't give it to him. RVN, the washed up injury prone ex manc lookin for a payday? So great Madrid have him as 5th choice. Idiotic comments

The reason there's no team spirit is the manager has slagged off his senior players, undermined others, frozen out his donkeys like Voronin and Babel and lacks any courage or bravery. He's a coward who transmits his caution and feeble approach to his players. I know for a fact Gerrard basically can't stand him and Carra thinks he's a bit of a manipulater. The fans like him a lot more than the players that's certain.

He's not an inspiring man..can u imagine any player going the extra mile for him? I can't. He bores most of them to death.

PH said...

We are a club in serious crisis now & in danger of finishing in humiliating mid-table. In any organization, the head honcho must take responsibility of either resigning or be sacked. Rafa - Please be a gentleman and leave Liverpool without forcing us to sack you. Leave with some shreds of honor & dignity.

Guest said...

Superb words.

Its's tragic how some people support the manager not the club.

Guest said...

Great post mate. There's no doubt some of our own fans have embarassed us with their desperate devotion to this guy. RAWK in particular should be ashamed of the way they have encouraged that mentality. Luckily the tipping point has arrived and people are no longer acccepting that crap. Thanks to this site and others the future is going to be a lot brighter once this man leaves us of that i'm certain. YNWA.

jc said...

kuyt is  an over indulged slow  useless player with poor control and passing skills who, claps everthing and kisses gerard and nandos ass, okay he runs around like a headless chicken and breaks up play but we are sacrificing an out and out natural winger in the process. Insua is complete rubbish and lucas flatters to disceive he will never rise above , he hasn't the characarter to handle it, you can see it in his body language . This team is so weak and spineless!!! I think everone agrees that losing Xavi and Sami has cut the heart of this team!!!!! However Benitwz had so much faith that pool could srvive with that midfield combo, neither that woult  know akiller pass if it kicked them up the ass

Kurtis said...

What formation do you suggest we use then great one?

Guest said...

Ok comment above, lets take last season. We are playing arsenal early in the season and doing them and if RB brings on an attcker we go on to win the game but he doesnt (suprise suprise!) How many other games that season should we have won if only Rafa had made ATTACK minded substitutions? We had an opportunity to take the Premiership by the scruff of the neck AND CLAIM IT but no ! rafa attacks whisky nose in press conference INSTEAD of palyong attackminded football on pitch.

THIS SEASON he's been caught out by his negative tactics EARLY. Everyone knows that we are a second half of the season outfit under RAfa but our first half of season form has been shocking. NOW IS THE TIME to play positive attacking football with our MOST SKILFUL , TALENTED PLAYERS. Rafa is a stubborn guy. Wouldn't you change tactics if they aren't working and lost you the campaign the year before? Or do you continue to play the same way until the ship has well and truly sunk? Oh no its ok because here comes HMS Rreal Madrid to save you. Send us a postcard Rafa.

SMY said...

This is a ridiculous Liverpool manager who is simply hopeless. The one good thing he did was to bring the Champion League to us in his first season. However, less we forgot, we were down 3-0 in first half because of his poor team selection. He only made changes at half time and brought in Hamann due to injury. It was never a tactical switch.

Now compare defensive midfielders like Hamann or even Scott Parker from West Ham with our current ones like Mascherano and Lucas. Hamann and Parker can come down deep and score. At the moment Agger our defender has higher chance of scoring than Mascherano and Lucas. Yet, we rely on 1 single striker as though we have world class defensive midfielders who can score goals!

Hopeless Rafa ... he is doing all these so that he will be sacked and walk away with a handsome sum of money. I say - just give him the money and kick the ass out of that guy. Kenny can cover for the time being if replacement is a problem.

Guest said...

The above comment has a fair degree of truth in it. Basically Xabi was the one Rafa had brought in that added the dynamic that Gerard Houllier team didnt have. Also every team experiences that "new manager" effect when the old boss leaves.

How ironic that it is that with Xabis departure rafa looks so fragile now. maybe its sa bid dose of karma for rafa. xabi got treated terribly. he deserved more respect. rafas had his money. send on the new boss. MOURINHO

Guest said...

Excellent article!  I have been cussing Benitez for his obstinacy and contrary decisions since the 2nd CL final.

Guest said...

NO EX MANC NEEDED AT LFC. No Ruud van Grillsteroy, No Mark 'Huge waste of cash' Hughes. THANQ

Guest said...

( to the above comment)

The scary thing is you are sounding like a newcastle united fan in the last paragraph. We need a proven winner. Get Maureen or the Goose.






...simply to believe that if things get any worse we could be in mid table mediocrity OR WORSE

Guest said...

( to the above comment) 
 
The scary thing is you are sounding like a newcastle united fan in the last paragraph so yes you are alone in your thoughts there i'm afraid. We need a proven winner. Get Maureen or the Goose. KK to steady the ship if Rafa meltdown.

Guest said...

Dirk Kuyt =DK= Donkey Kong. Runs and jumps up and down all day long but thats about it. Mind you he's not a winger is he. he's supposed to be a striker but now he's almost a defensive midfielder. If rafa signed Samuel Eto hed prob end up the same way. Does Donkey Kong have dirt on RB? I cant work out why he plays EVERY WEEK??? I swear i even saw him playing on a best of the seventies liverpool DVD. Its getting to the stage where i cant stand the sight of him.

kazzak said...

Yep, cant blame lucas, thats the easy option.  it looks like we will be keeping hold of lucas as masch looks set to move.  maybe with masch suspended we will get to see aquillani and lucas together as this seems to be the pairing of the next few seasons.  its a pity, danny murphy was a better option than lucas as was momo, but to be fair to the boy he has been playing better though I would not have him in starting 11.

Guest said...

Why do we expect to be challenging for the title? Because Benitez has given us, the fans, the belief that we COULD win the league. Without Benitez, we'd have spent the last five years fighting with Fulham and Everton for a UEFA cup spot.

Joe said...

I respect Rafa, but i don't think he can motivate the team anymore. Rafa did do wonders in the beginning for a much poorer squad than what we have right now (Houlier's team) simply because the TEAM wanted to impress the manager. Now, is the same thing all over again. Existing squad lost confidence and i am afraid only a change in the manager is going to help us get back to business.
   Having said this, i am afraid the same thing will happen again in the future as long as we don't have a decent owner to invest in the team. Houlier's buys were poor, but Rafa did a much better job in the transfer market. If only we had decent owners who can bank roll in the funds like Chelsea or Man City, it would have been a much better season.

kazzak said...

Its basically the same team except that lucas has a much bigger role - alonso - and though he is playing better he is not world class.  Also arbeloa was much better than what he was credited with.  The defense is a year older and skrtel is not playing anymore.  Insua has started more games and we all see his confidence has eroded somewhat.  the system has not changed but t is not working because we do not have the same players.  for first 30 mins it looked like liverpool would walk away with an easy victory but after goal it always looked like pompeys.

Guest said...

Actually, the red card WAS the changing point in the game. Until then Liverpool were in the ascendency and only behind to a freak goal that he couldn't score again in 100 attempts. If Masch hadstayed on we'd have won the game either 2-1 or 3-1.

What did you make of the sending off? Are you happy that the ref consulted with the 4th official before deciding on red? I bet the Irish aren't.

tonio said...

Fire Lucas asap

Guest said...

In rafa I do not trust nor have I ever trusted.

Guest said...

Open a window, the fumes are getting to you. Rafa wouldn't last a week in Madrid. They want beautiful football. A win is not good enough.
I can already see his starting XI:
                                 
                                                Casillas
         S. Ramos                 Albiol           Garay              Arbeloa

                                                M.diarra
       L.Diarra               X.Alonso                 F. Gago        Marcelo
                          
                             Guti
                                           Raul

Bench:
Benzema
C.Ronaldo
RVA
Higuain
KaKa (want to wait until he's match fit)
Ruud V
Dudek
                                                  

Antoine said...

Oh, I forgot to mentioned that he would complained about not having enough funds.

Dalglish86 said...

"Rafa, do you fear of your job right now?" (Sky Reporter)

"I fear with our next game"..(that sounds the next game Liverpool again will be playing with 9 devensive minded players!!)

Oh god, please save liverpool..As Carra and Gerrard becomes older, i just hope liverpool will not be as Leeds or Newcastle in near future.

satish nair said...

the team sucks, the result sucks and it is extremely disgusting to watch liverpool play these days. only god, rafa and maybe lucas know why lucas gets to play every game despite underperforming each time. benayoun is often overlooked despite being one of our best players. i have resisted temptation to ask for rafa's sacking but now it is inevitable if we are to arrest this rot

Antoine said...

How do you know that as a FACT?

Yogi said...

agreed

Ken in USA said...

That's the sad thing, poloy. The mentality that takes over now. I'm the same way. My expectations are so low now...can we score just one goal...can we hold on to that goal if indeed we can actually score it. Rafa's lineup was tame. Worse yet, he should have been ready for Pompey. Truth is, they had a very good game against Chelsea and had been much more aggressive up front. It should have been easy to capitalizse on their strengths/weaknesses.

WalkAlone said...

Let King Kenny manage the team till the end of season. Sack Rafa. Recall our talents like Nemeth. Play the team which perform. No more Kuyt, Lucas!!!

zam said...

Clearly, benitez lose a plot, thinking too cautios, play player out of formation, subs player very late instead of 2nd half subs, not starting best eleven... and so on. I hate to say this but probably Benitez is losing her minds.

Guest said...

What has Mancini ever done, other than winning Serie A after AC and Juve got punished for cheating? Anyone could have done that. Have you forgotten how we spanked them in the CL a few seasons ago?

Guest said...

Knowing Rafa, I think its more likely that Aurelio will start in the middle with Aqua on the bench against the big bad Wolves.

Guest said...

Jesus Christ, this is unbelieable to read. I hope that you all have a bitter taste, running around and celebrating the CL, FA. Demoliting Real home and Utd away last year and now stabbing the same man in the back that made it possible last year and the years before. The sooner all of you - and especially you Kamwar - jump of the the ship and show your flag, that better. I mighty club in troubles is not in need of "fans" like you. 

Guest said...

Rafa has managed to hide his inabilities behind the American smoke screen.

Gives us all an Xmas present Rafa... wrap yourself up, and post yourself out.

Guest said...

He would still be preferable to Benitez

poloy said...

If he did go to Madrid, do you guys think Xabi Alonso would want to come back to us?

WalkAlone said...

Support for the manager blindly is not going to do the club any good as well. The manager manages the club, the players. There is absolutely no excuses if the team loses. He chooses the team. If the player is not up to it, he should be dropped. Why should we need the manager if the team he picks keep losing? It will be the same as a managerless team.

navofarabia said...

I can refer you to Jamie Carragher's autobiography  where he does specifically mention that the club and squad were all over the place!

I think he would know.

Jamie I do not understand the bashing of true fans who know that replacing the manager at this stage of the season is suicide...lets get behind the team and manager and see what happens at the end of the year...that would be the time for change if needed!

Surely all fans can see if Rafa goes now it would almost certainly be curtains for getting in the top four, we would lose the likes of Torres, Reina maybe even Gerrard! The grass is not always greener my friends and no world class manager (which we already have!!) would want to come to LFC in our present position with debt, lack of funds and bickering owners!

IF you want to actually HELP then pls get behind the TEAM and MANAGER!

navofarabia said...

May I remind you that Rafa made Traore, Smicer, Biscan, Kewell etc all champions league winners!

Why didnt you want him out when we were whopping Real Madrid and Man Utd amongst others???

I am beginning to question some SO CALLED LFC fans!

navofarabia said...

WE WON BECAUES OF RAFA! If it was the players then why didnt Houllier win the champions league with them????

Matty K said...

A true Liverpool supporter should be able to come up with constructive critisism on these forums. Noone appears to be bagging players or the manager but the results speak louder than words- there has been poor choices from the top. Lucas -what does he do??? Why is Benayoun getting splinters instead of goals??? Aquilani- does he really exist or is some mythical $20 million player from another planet??? Why does the team have a mentallity that when you score a goal, just defend your lead- & hope to hold on 1-0 playing the rest of the game defending in Liverpools 1/2. Who should the fans look to for answers- is Rafa not accountable for anything??? Back Liverpool til my last breath but lets not consider it a sin for fans to share their opinions- alright.

Antoine said...

Xabi is a class act; he will stay and be a professional. That being said, the chances of Rafa going to Real is very, very, very, very low.

Guest said...

Saw an old interbiew with Shanks last night. A point he made was that he told players to accept ref decisions. Arguing with the ref affects concentration he reasoned and afterall "a referee never scored a bloody goal did he?"
Aside from his (Benitez) incompetence as a football manager, the 'man' has no integrity or dignity - the only Liverpool manager in my lifetime to slag off opposing managers - and these reasons alone should have been enough for jim to never have been offered the job in the first place. His behaviour in the press over the past few years has been an insult to the memory of Shanks, Paisley and Fagan.
For all those who quote Istanbul, it wasn't worth it.

Guest said...

even with 10 men and a goal down i still expect liverpool to win at pompey, but rafa wants to sit on the bench with liverpool's most creative players who could possibly come up with a goal. if aurelio is fit and on the bench, start with him at left back ahead of insua who has no pace, no positional sense and a poor delivery when forward. kuyt and lucas should be on the bench, they gave the ball away so many times at pompey it was embarassing, but they are un-droppable from rafa's team. fair enough yossi has been below par in the past 3 games, but i'd have a below par yossi ahead of dossena left mid, ngog has scored 6 in 8, put him in with torres upfront against bottom side pompey!!! it is not as if liverpool do not have creative players, they are there, they are just not used by rafa, i'm not sure how he managed at valencia because that team had creative players who worked hard.

Nobbs said...

He is not a great manager.
Dun compare him with Houllier.
Why dun you compare him with Ferguson and Wenger and Mourinho.

And pls dun say one CL win makes him a great manager. It was kinda fluke. And in the final, it took him 3 goals down before he changed his team tactics and lineup after half time. Question is - why didn't he field that team in the first place?

aido said...

If you are anti Rafa people say you are not a supporter why?At this stage being anti Rafa means you know what the club is about,passing the ball to each other being the first principle the second dedication.People say you are a manc Jamie but if you were i think you would want Rafa to stay forever

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