17 Jun 2015

Contact Made: Liverpool negotiating transfer for '€60m' attacker Maradona hailed as 'exceptional' in 2014

In May, Mino Raiola claimed that Mario Balotelli 'will stay' at Liverpool next season, but reports continue to link the much-maligned Italian 'maverick' with a move to Sampdoria, and talks are reportedly ongoing between the two clubs.

Last week, Italian newspaper TuttoSport claimed that:

* Sampdoria President Massimo Ferrero flew to London to meet to hold Balotelli transfer talks with Liverpool.

* Ferrero 'asked' Liverpool about the feasibility of taking Balotelli on loan next season.

According to Italian daily Corriere Dello Sport this week:

* Sampdoria are still negotiating with Liverpool over a move for Balotelli.

* The Italian's €6m-a-year wages are a problem for the club, and Sampdoria want Liverpool to contribute to his wages.

Sampdoria's interest in Balotelli is no secret; back in April, Ferrero confirmed that he wanted to bring the striker back to Italy, and noted:

"He [Balotelli] has lost his hunger. He’s earning too much. If he was only on bread and water, he’d be a champion again.”

According to Balotelli's agent, Mino Raiola, the striker is going nowhere. He recently confirmed:

"We have talks with Liverpool and he will stay. I spoke many times with the club and they were happy with his input as a professional"

That's all well and good, but the idea of being the biggest fish in a (comparatively) small pond may appeal to Balotelli, who - according to his clearly deluded agent, is worth '€60m-€70m'.

At Liverpool, he has no real status as such, and struggles to even make the team, but at Sampdoria, he'd undoubtedly be the main-man.

I'm indifferent either way, but I just have a nagging feeling that Balotelli - hailed last season by Diego Maradona as 'exceptional - will perform better under a different manager.



Rodgers has no idea how to utilise him effectively, and in terms of goals/assists, the Italian is worse at Liverpool than at any other club in his career. Consider the following:

* Prior to Liverpool: 124 goals/assists in 220 games for Inter, Man City, and Milan (Goal/assist every 1.7 games)

* Average of 16 goals/assists per season for the last 8 years.

* At Liverpool: 4 goals/0 assists in 26 apps (Goal/assist every 6.5 games).

As the figures show, despite his familiarity with the Premier League, Balotelli has badly regressed at Liverpool, and in my view, Rodgers is squarely to blame for that. If his previous three managers got 16 goals/assists out of him every season (on average), why has Rodgers failed to elicit a similar level of productivity?

Yes, Balotelli has to take some responsibility, but his history proves that he can consistently score and create goals. He's not massively prolific, but it's damning to consider that the season prior to his Liverpool move, Balotelli grabbed 26 goals/assists in 41 appearances for Milan, which is an excellent return.

Bottom line: for whatever reason, Rodgers is incapable of getting the best out of Balotelli, and the drastic reduction in the striker's output is the exception - not the rule - for his career, which (IMO) means Rodgers is culpable.

Author: Jaimie K



218 comments:

  1. What a waste once again...

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  2. Very true. If Rodgers is to stay he must make big changes to his managerial style. Balotelli is an example of a poorly managed quality football player. He needs a run of games and possibly a striking partner with good mobility. Also more coaching in build up play.

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  3. I'm sure the same apply's to Lovern ,Lambert ,Borini ,Aspas and Alberto .

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  4. Mario is a waste of space he's lazy and believes he is better than he actually is that's his problem, he sulks more than he works, it's nothing to do with Rodgers, and you'll will no doubt say that he likes to have a strike partner but that'll just tells me doesn't want to work to create his own space... Say you sacrifice a midfielder to play someone up there to do his donkey work man city are the only successful team that deploy and there central midfield is far stronger and more athletic than ours, and when they come up a competent team they come unstuck. We'd get destroyed

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  5. But it's just easier to blame Rodgers for balotellis in ability to work

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  6. Goal / Assists ? - he's a bloody striker the only measure is goals and his career contribution is very poor ....

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  7. This just shows your irrational prejudice. How is one goal/assist every 1.7 games 'very poor'. Ings is nowhere near that; Ditto Lambert, Original,  Borini etc, and a whole host of other striker's in the Prem.

    Sent from Samsung Mobile

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  8. B R is the PROBLEM = He would hake Messi look dodgy - has not got a clue how to utilise Balo - Who is the better judge Maradona or BR ???? P S Diego was AMAZING

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  9. Who bought Balo then ???? And if it was not B R then he is not the Manager

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  10. No we're not.. we only sign average british crap or "free" (that actually cost at least 5M) I exect milner to be the high point of our transfer summer and this coming season to be absolutely depressing as we struggle to finish 7th. #rodgersout

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  11. Do not sell Mario he is a class act badly managed...................BR can go first.

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  12. I say we hang on to him. He's here now, we know he can kick a ball if his head is right and I don't see the point of loaning him out. Either we sell him for close to what we paid or we hang on to him and use him with a striker next to him.

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  13. If he is just hanging out for his wages shouldn't we keep him and "let him rot on the bench?"

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  14. Ace manager though :/

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  15. Just saw the fixture list...
    Can't see Rodgers surviving it....its gets brutal for Liverpool in the first half before Christmas with aways trips to Arsenal, Manchester United, Everton, Tottenham,and Manchester City.

    And just for the laughs Liverpool start their season at Stoke!!

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  16. Next season the Liverpool bench will be chock full of the rotting corpses of overpaid footballers.

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  17. Might I delicately suggest that maybe, with your apparently irrational hatred of the British and their footballers, English football is not for you?

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  18. Great because it means stuff will start to hit the fan quicker, meaning action will be taken quickly.

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  19. Holy cow has everyone seen the fixture list? Here's the first 12 games -- look at who we've got away! It's... ridiculous!

    Stoke (A), Bournemouth (H), Arsenal (A), West Ham (H), Norwich (H) Man Utd (A), Everton (A), Tottenham (A), Southampton (H), Chelsea (A), Palace (H), and Manchester City (A).

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  20. jeez... either lfc would come out trumps or BR would get it. Gosh these 12 games would either make or break the season right up!
    Stunned with the games, and during the end same 1 month of hell games for LFC.

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  21. BR sacked by November!!

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  22. BR fails to get the best out of most players, let alone Balotelli..

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  23. If only English football had majority of English players in top team.

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  24. Even Lambert's and Borini's pre-Liverpool stats are much better than under BR.

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  25. I predict 16 points in first 12 games.

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  26. That wouldn't be too bad. I'm going for a slightly more optimistic 20, putting us around 5th, which wouldn't be bad at all. Nice to think we'll be playing all the top teams at home in the second half of the season...

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  27. Slight positive, we're at home after 5 of our 6 europa group games, with the derby only one away.


    I'm happy with the fixtures to be honest, just can't see Rodgers making Christmas with that start, & if by some miracle we're in the top 4 mix, april onwards looks pretty easy

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  28. oh Der Baumman is seriously gonna be pissed off!;)

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  29. they are too dumb to be blamed, actually.

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  30. Another one gone, who JK has spoken about in the last couple of years to get, if memory serves me right............

    Fenerbahce have signed Simon Kjaer on a four-year deal. He moves on a free transfer from Lille.

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  31. He wasn't all that mate... Good player but that's nothing out of the ordinary.

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  32. I would love us to move away from the "resale" concept and attempt to hang on to our precious few players that eventually reach something akin to 'world-class' level. We risk projecting an image of Liverpool as a stepping-stone rather than a destination club otherwise.

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  33. If we can somehow get some positive results in the 1st half of the season then second half we may be able to push on. #tryingtobepositive

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  34. The difference is that Chelski signs young players like Kevin De Bruyne and Salah, who despite their youth, were already damn nigh good enough to hold down a first-team spot had they been given the chance.

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  35. ...and Oscar, and Eden Hazard, and Kurt Zouma...

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  36. There definitely is a middle ground, and I'm wondering what side of that middle ground recent articles about Raheem Sterling and Martin Skrtel's contract issues sat.

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  37. Thanks for that. Sorry that you seem to be losing a good player.

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  38. Ok.... was not sure about his stats, I just remember couple of articles/mentions about him from JK, but not sure if JK wanted him or not.Regards.

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  39. That's the toughest 10 games i can ever remember

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  40. Yep, easy run-of-games in the second half. Perfectly poised for Klopp's revival ;-)

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  41. Where are the criticism??? Are you mad? Someone saying the truth you call it "criticise" because you're happy to accept mediocrity. What he said was absolutely right.
    After paying half your salary for tickets what you get to watch is a team without direction, never look like scoring etc. It's bizarre how some fans happy with this deal., it's like going to market order for EC1000 generator hoping it will power your 3500cp washing machine..(Total nonsense ). We need a ready made players. Period!

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  42. If we put Flanagan in a Suarez disguise we might nick a draw against Norwich.

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  43. I agree Ron, we haven't been getting things right for a while, I'm just hoping that FSG' success in other areas such as Baseball, although a totally different game, is an indication that they do learn as they go and that this summer they will prove that.
    It's plain for all to see that we need two or three high level players to get us back on track.

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  44. First we need to over-turn the 6-1 @ Stoke ;-)

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  45. Bit of both would be ideal for me, I think to compete with the oilers we are going to need to become very savvy with our purchases and if a few turn us a tidy profit, then that can only help to pay the required wages to hang on to the really good ones.
    I hate the thought of us becoming a 'feeder club' but to a point others can view us however they like, ultimately it's a teams on-pitch results that shout the loudest and if FSG can make the 'buy and sell for a profit' thing work in that respect, I suppose it's not so bad, can they though...

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  46. If a proxy etc isn't doable for you and you can access the router for the PC in question - try turning it off for an hour or even overnight - when you switch it back on you may have been allocated a new IP address.

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  47. You're absolutely right; we're going to have to have a bit of both. If FSG can make it work then that's ideal, as long as it doesn't involve jettisoning Coutinho to the first well-heeled suitor.

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  48. Best way to make money from a business - make it successful and I'm sure FSG are here to try and do exactly that, lets see if they've learnt from last summer and can actually land us one or two of our top targets.

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  49. But he made Suarez look amazing...


    Oh yes sorry, that doesn't fit now does it?


    Err.... Suarez being brilliant had nothing to do with BR
    Balotelli being rubbish ,however is all BECAUSE of BR


    Self contradiction of the highest order.

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  50. I can't put into print how angry I'd be if that happened. Suarez and Sterling, you can see they want/ed to go, but Coutinho really seems like he's found a home here and I think the feeling is mutual.
    If he was sold on, purely in the name of profit, then it would be a very bad day for Liverpool football Club and probably time for some new owners, IMO.

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  51. Don't most of Balo's come from penalties though? Not saying they don't count but it can slew the stats a touch.

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  52. Fixture 'computer' my @ss


    Stoke away first game? Somebody's idea of a joke if you ask me. Nobody will convince me it's not manipulated and entirely random.


    I think it's perfect. If Rodgers can win that and win comfortably, it will represent decent progress for both team and manager.


    If not, well, it will signal the beginning of the end , he will have demonstrated his shortcomings and the need for change...

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  53. 18 for me hopefully

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  54. Fergie still does the fixtures, I think that's a fact ;-)

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  55. Yeah, totally. We seem to be in a perpetual sell-to-buy moment, which is partially understandable, but also a bit less than ideal from a supporter's perspective. Agreed about Sterling and Suarez; here's hoping they are exceptions and not poster-boys. Am I being Eeyore?

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  56. UUf Jaime!, i never knew you were this old

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  57. We all have our own opinions but mine is that Brendan, categorically, did not want Balo in the first place, with that in mind it seems obvious that he was never going to get the best out of him.
    I like Balo and once we did sign him I really hoped it may work out, the spurs game gave me hope, unfortunately it became clear why Brendan didn't want him - he doesn't fit the requirements of what we/BR need in any way whatsoever and as such I will be happy to see him sold, in fact I'll be disappointed if that doesn't happen because, left lingering, I don't see him being a positive influence on our youngsters.

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  58. Sure most have seen, first 10 matches include Arsenal, UTD, Everton Spurs, Chelsea and Southampton and opening game Stoke :-o


    Sure, we play all these teams during the season but that is an opening fixture list which will either make or destroy our season...

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  59. If we can get off to a good start and catch the others knapping the title could be up for grabs. I really hope we get moving with our transfers - then we can start honing them into a lean, mean giant killing machine.

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  60. It'll be pretty epic, I'm looking forward to it, no matter what happens!

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  61. The title?

    *looks dubious*

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  62. Perfect fixtures to set up Rodgers... Would love to pay whoever that made this fixture .

    "The god of football will watch lfc beat Arsenal (A) , Man Utd (A), Everton (A) , spurs (A), Chelsea and citeh (A). After that,

    "The god of football will also watch Rodgers stay on till season finished

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  63. Only if we acquire the players we've recently been discussing but then sure why not, I'm up for it :)

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  64. Could turn into a nightmare for you if we do well though :p

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  65. Still can't get over fans wanting us to lose :-(

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  66. “In the summer, we had Rickie Lambert and Fabio Borini was looking as though 100% he was gone.

    “Obviously Daniel (Sturridge) has shown in his career so far that he gets injuries.

    “So it would be unfair to leave Rickie Lambert, a 32-year-old, as the only striker we had.

    “I FELT THIS (Balotelli) was a risk we needed to take and as a group we couldn’t afford not to at the time.

    “It was obviously late on and we need to have someone in.

    “It’s something that we can’t regret.

    “I made it clear at the beginning it was a calculated one and that is why he probably cost the money that he did.”

    Yet we called off Remy for half of what Balo cost?

    It seem like Rodgers 'did not' want any of the strikers signed since he has arrived other than Sturridge.

    Aspas, Lambert, Borini, Balo and Yesil have hardly seen the pitch at Anfield.

    Let's see if he also 'did not' want Origi. If Ings does not work out then he can be added to the "I did not want him" list too... Poor Brendan.

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  67. What about Suarez?

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  68. "It seem like Rodgers 'did not' want any of the strikers signed since he has arrived other than Sturridge."
    Sounds about right, dam that blasted transfer committee.

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  69. HA HA HA HA - LFCrejrct £40 million Sterling bid - DONT LOOK SO CLEVER NOW DO YOU RAHEEM ???????

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  70. FSG will make Sterling and his Agent SICK AS PARROTS before this Summer is over = LOVE IT

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  71. Can he not just buy out the remainder of his contract and leave anyway though? - genuine query.

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  72. What a well structured argument.

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  73. To put the cat amongst the pidgeons, so to speak, I actually want Sterling to stay for the remainder of his contract at £35k pw
    With no CL and a diminished reputation, plus with most if not all of the decent targets declaring they need CL to move, what good will even £50m do us right now?
    Buy Clyne, Naiggolan and a top striker, and keep Sterling to show the footballing world who we really are. Sterling needs to play for his place due to the Euro Championships, and to get the move he wants

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  74. And of course Rodgers did not want Markovic, Can, Lovren, Lallana and Moreno either.


    In fact, he wanted none of the signing made since he joined, including Joe Allen.

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  75. I think that's for over 25's

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  76. No, I think he did want the good players you mention.

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  77. Whatever the topic, the answer is a sarcastic comment about Rodgers.
    Brilliant stuff. And you're encouraging it.

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  78. I don't mind chatting with Logan and think I can offer him an alternative view and only reply with genuinely held views.
    I usually only do so for a short amount of time though as I can see it may become tedious for others, I can't see a problem though - he has a strong dislike for BR which he's entitled to, but it's equally fair for people to present him with a counter argument - I'd rather that than just insult him as some do (that's not aimed at yourself)
    Sorry if it's riled you Mike, I certainly don't want to get on the wrong side of an Ed-209 :)

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  79. With current TC and BR, even 50000000mn will do us no good tbh.

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  80. There's definitely a 3 year protected period for under 28's too which still leaves Sterling at least a year short.
    Ibe is here to play a similar role, albeit that Sterling is more advanced at this time- and with us losing 20% to QPR and a development fee payable (c15m) when he does move 'for free', this £35 +5 bid would be £28m to us
    Added to at least 70-80k per week saved (£4m) on the last season plus 2 more - I think we would be better off keeping him until our standing improves or Klopp/Ancelotti or whoever is in place

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  81. If we play names-names, I will win.

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  82. BR does not know how to make a good team,he always play them at random.

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  83. Well we are going to know pretty early where our season is headed.

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  84. Yeah, it's a rum do.

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  85. It has nothing to do with a strong dislike to Rodgers. Rafa was my number one fan until the end of his 4th season. His 5th season all the evidence was there that he could take us no further. His 6th and final season confirmed it.


    I was no different back then to what I am know. Does not mean I hate Rafa, just do not want to see him as manager again.

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  86. I agree . 203/14 was the best chance in recent history. We'll need an awesome side to win against the teams being assembled by our rivals...

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  87. Doubt it. But good luck.

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  88. Replacing Balotelli with Charlie Austin makes sense.... Really.........

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  89. By strong dislike for Rodgers I meant exactly what you describe, - football related - not that you set out personally disliking the guy, although I think you do that as well but can see how that becomes so, - I very much dislike Roy Hodgson, never met the guy but through managing Liverpool and now England I've grown to dislike him very much, so for me I can understand your stance on Brendan.

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  90. Let's see, shall we. This is just major players at Liverpool: Sturridge, Coutino, Suarez, Sterling, Henderson, Carragher, Gerrard -- the last two are the only controversial ones as I see it, and have had nothing but praise for Rodgers. Carragher credits him with persuading him to stay on for an extra year. Moving Gerrard back into deep midfield extended his career by two years, since he no longer had the engine for a more forward role.



    Take Swansea into account as well and you have well-respected players like Ashley Wlliams and Leon Britton who owe their good reputations and whole careers in the premier league to Rodgers and his methods.


    The players he's let go or discouraged: Downing, Shelvey, Carroll, Borini, Suso, Assaidi... none of these players, with only the possible exception of Shelvey -- don't rate him myself but others do -- have done anything to show he made a bad call.

    Why are you unable to have anything like a balanced view? You make yourself look pretty high-handed and a little silly, if I might say so, when you make these over-the-top claims. Of course Rodgers improves some players and helps their careers. And at Liverpool, those he has helped include our most important players over the last 3 years. it's not impossible to admire the good things about the work of someone you don't like and would prefer to see replaced.

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  91. Sorry mate, I don't understand your point.

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  92. Thats one thing i think FSG get right, they proved with Saurez they wont back down even if it means ignoring clauses.


    Would be really funny if he was forced to stay on 35K a week for 2 years, damages his agents career as well.


    Perfect scenario , City panic with £50m bid late on in window, leaving Rodgers no time to spend it, hopefully it goes to a new guy

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  93. I don't see the big clubs queuing up to save him though, do you?

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  94. We'll get our chance eventually. If we just keep things stable and developing, when it happens, when Abramovic gets arrested, or there's a democratic revolution in the UAE, or Louis Van Gaal finally snaps and goes full Hannibal on the Man Utd first team, we'll be in a position to grab the chance. That's what happened in 2013-14 -- Chelsea and Man Utd went into transition and we capitalised. Just weren't quite ready, really, were we. But next time...

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  95. You can throw skrtel, Flanagan, sakho and ibe on the help list as well.

    For now you can throw markovic, and Moreno in hampering but that's pretty shortsighted considering language barriers, change of leagues, change of cultures, young.

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  96. Logically it would be mad to argue with that but we know football is just a funny old game, I've lost enough money to the bookies over many seasons betting on the big guns of the league.
    Take Chelsea as an example, they started off all guns blazing last season - even playing some very attractive football - shock horror, second half of the season though it tailed right off and they reverted to type, I just felt that if City could of applied a little pressure Chelsea's season could absolutely collapse.
    The Suarez season, again shock horror - little old us reminded the rest what we can do.
    Soton last season - many had down as relegation fodder, didn't happen and many were caught out.
    The one thing Brendan has proved is that we *can* hit our stride and go on very long winning streaks, so with the right players lge winning consistency is possible. As I say I don't think we have a hope in hell without the Kovacic's turning up, but if they do...

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  97. ROGERS OUT !!!!!!!!!!! simple ,, he aint any good , WE'RE LIVERPOOL not swansea

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  98. I said 'most' of the players. And its not silly to make such claims when a manager can't get the best out of his own darlings (Allen and Borini). He cannot even get the best out of a good signing in Emre Can, in fact he makes him looks silly and vulnerable by playing him in unfamiliar RB position. He also fails to get most out of his expensive signings like Markovic, Balotelli, Lovren, Moreno, Sahin. Not to forget duds like Aspas, Alberto, Lambert, Manquillo, Assaidi, etc etc. Those are signings of our TC which certainly takes BR's opinion into consideration and our style of play. Whichever way you look at it, BR's shortcomings overshadows his good qualities.

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  99. In your opinion tommy, how many exclamation marks would be too many? Seriously now.

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  100. Van Gaal is already showing his Hannibal side(Van Persie, Di Maria, Janjuzi) they were not very good last year just extremely lucky where we lacked composer and a touch of luck. I don't see it holding together all season. He is better national team manager. His hack and chop and isolation tactics are motivaters in national sides where it creates fractures in clubs. His tenures at clubs leave much to be desired.

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  101. With you on all but the Rodgers bit, but yeah it's sure nice to see FSG show the rest we mean business.

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  102. Will need that character Rodgers has been harping to be not less than outstanding ;)

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  103. Yeah it would be great to ruin his agent at the same time

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  104. Pedantry: Sahin was free.

    Fairness: Markovic and Moreno are too young for us to judge, their talent is clear, and some of us would argue Moreno did well for a debut season.

    Accuracy: You only claim Borini and Allen are his darlings. it doesn't add anything to your point. Allen has done fine. I wouldn't describe Rodgers' attitude to either of them as loving: trying to sell Borini and using Allen as a squad player is not infatuation.

    Can: I didn't see Can complaining. He plays multiple positions including right back for the Germany U21s. The position is no longer unfamiliar to him since he played it for half a season. He was emphatically not ready for central midfield, and variation is good for a player's development.

    Lovren and Balotelli are the only important names here, and Lovren is the one that sticks out for me. The others you name were never going to be important for Liverpool and Balotelli was a panic buy who was only ever being brought in for the short term. So really you are only able to point at one signing of any consequence that has not been improved by Rodgers and whose career is in worse shape than it was before he joined Liverpool.

    Against the names I mentioned, what sort of case do you think you have here? From where I'm sitting, it's laughable, to be honest.

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  105. Sahin wasn't an expensive signing he was a loan.

    Can looked decent no matter where he played, that's a stretch to say that was poor.
    Manquillo looked decent when he played, but injuries and change of formation prevented him. He is also young, refer to my comment about the changes.

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  106. I don't want us to lose, I want Rodgers OUT. How would I be attending matches week in-week out when I want lfc to lose???

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  107. Interesting that most of those duds are pretty cheap players , and therefore by definition gambles.
    Not having Markovic and Moreno though. Including loanees (Sahin, Manquillo) is a bit suspect, and Balotelli and Sahin refused to put the team first..

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  108. I think the eleventh one really hammers his point home

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  109. To get Rodgers out he is going to have to lose. So in other words you want LFC TO LOSE

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  110. Revelling in 'Perfect fixtures to set up Rodgers'
    Wanting to pay the chap that set them?
    doesn't give the impression that you want us to win all 12?

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  111. Yeah ,wouldn't have been the same with only 10..

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  112. How could it be anything else? Indeed I will make a prediction that our character will be, in the judgement of the manager, which as you know I have great respect for, outstanding from day one...

    ... no matter what the actual results might be :)

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  113. Why has nobody told him to stop using that word? Blimey, enough already, it's just a convenient stick to beat him with how does he not recognise that?

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  114. Sometimes you do need to go all the way up to eleven.

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  115. Well it's an outstanding word, Mike, and unless you want to be commenting at a much lower level in your career as it develops going forward, you might want to take that kind of good advice on board, as I say, because it's important that we see that outstanding character from you in every comment.

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  116. *fierce determined face*

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  117. That's what I was thinking too. For the past couple years we've had that mid season push, even last season. If we get the toughies out of the way early, we could start that run earlier, and sustain it longer with the tougher matches at Anfield mid season.

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  118. Yeah we were playing with 10 for a while.

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  119. Nonsense! , shelvey is (IMO) better than dwarfs (Allen&lucas combined )we have in our starting lineup. The man also thought 16m for Alberto and apsas is a better deal than 11m eriksen.

    Go check shelvey stats for the last 2season

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  120. It's something we'll have to look at as a group, but as I say, we'll continue to do that going forward.
    The attitude of the commenters has been absolutely outstanding all season, and we'll look to maintain that.

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  121. 'Cos of Balotelli?

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  122. Nonsense because... you rate Shelvey higher than Allen and Lucas? That's not enough for me to change my mind mate sorry.

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  123. Surarez is an exceptional player who had a fit Sturridge alongside him. It's likely he produced despite Rodgers rather than because of him.

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  124. Have you been taken over by JK? That's EXACTLY how he described it re Eriksen
    And Shelvey was talented, but a liability.

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  125. So if it's down to the player, why is BR blamed for Balotelli?

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  126. Theycallmemrburt2:34 pm, June 17, 2015

    TO say its a tough start............. :0

    however it could work in our favour. Usually the form (especially attacking wise) of all teams in the league is pretty rusty at the beginning of the season.

    errrrr..... yeah we're screwed..

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  127. Funny thing is, these people would have been the first to have hammered Erikssen if he'd performed for us as he performed for Spurs in the first season he was there. They'd have hounded him the same way they've hounded Sterling and Allen, and before that Lucas and Henderson... so it goes on...

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  128. Even better he stays, plays brilliantly, signs a new 4-year contract next spring adding £20m to his price tag, blows the Euros apart, *then* moves to Spain for £100m and the club buys every loyal supporter who's ever posted messages in support of the Rodgers regime a new pair of Timberlands because theirs are frankly knackered.

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  129. Apparently we've also had an offer of Balo + cash in trade for Kovacic rejected by Inter, looks like we're throwing him in as a little Brucie bonus for anyone we do business with.

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  130. I have to disagree about the selling part. First of all, he SIGNED Assaidi and Borini so I do not see how he gets credit for letting them go or discouraging them. My view on Suso and Shelvey is simple - are they any worse than what we have. I do not think Suso is any worse than Lallana and Shelvey any worse than Allen. I agree about Downing and Carroll though.

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  131. So you're saying there isn't a middle ground?


    The Echo is either the club's mouthpiece or they are against the club completely?


    There's no analytic wherewithal?

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  132. There are as many bids for him as there are for Coutinho ;-) Transfer interest is an unreliable marker of quality.

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  133. If you're going to call for his dismissal, at least get his name right.

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  134. Your statements leads us to a whole new topic of discussion as to whether Rodgers is the "Real" manager or not.


    I tried to rationalize it, but It seems to me that if players are forced on him by the TC and he accepted it, then he lack the personality and character to be a Liverpool manager. (Needless to mention that entire structure of TC and spineless manager need to go). If he chose the players then he really does not deserve to be a Liverpool manager.

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  135. He should take notes from Annie Wilkes.

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  136. I don't get the impression that they are anything more than quote based.


    The Echo is not saying that Sterling or Skrtel are incorrect (or that the club is incorrect either, for that matter).

    They are merely reporting the situations.

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  137. SECURITY RECORDING TRANSCRIPT
    17 JUNE 2015 09:45
    CENTRO SPORTIVO ANGELO MORATTI, MILAN
    ROBERTO MANCINI'S OFFICE

    MANCINI: So, Mr. Ayre. Welcome. I hope you had a smooth ride.
    AYRE: [removes helmet] Indeed I did Roberto. It was more than adequate. But let's get straight down to business. Now, I am here for one thing, and one thing only. And I'm not going to leave until I get it.
    MANCINI: [blushing, smoothing back his silvery locks] Ah, Mr. Ayre, so masterful! And so soon! But -- [begins to unbutton shirt]
    AYRE: No, Roberto, no. Not that. Not yet. No, I refer to young Mateo Kovacic, your fine young Croatian playmaker.
    MANCINI: [not to be dissuaded] But Mr. Ayre... Ian... ah! the smell of hot leather and engine oil!... You can have anything you want... anything... just say the word... he's yours! And so am I.
    AYRE: [pleased, yet cold, cruel and noble] Anything, Roberto?
    MANCINI: *Anything*.
    AYRE: Then you will also accept... this! [opens panniers] Mario, emerge! [Mario Balotelli climbs from the bag]
    MANCINI: [...] You've got to be kidding.
    AYRE: You said you would do *anything*, Roberto! Accept Mario and give me Kovacic! And here [opens another bag], take this! And this! [hands over bulging bags of £50 notes, gold bullion, keys to Ferraris, Ryan Giggs's little black book, etc etc].
    MANCINI: [rebuttoning his shirt] We're finished here, Mr. Ayre. And to think, it could have been so beautiful.
    MARIO: [with a cheeky hopeful grin] Ciao boss --
    MANCINI: [pauses and begins to turn slowly, his eyes aflame with hatred and rage]... You... dare... speak... to me!?

    SOUNDS OF SCREAMING
    CAMERA BLACKS OUT
    RECORDING ENDS

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  138. Perfectly put Jdoe, I don't recall my precise words but the other day I said on here something along the lines of - 'maybe Brendan needs to start saying *no* more often and perhaps if he really cares for the Club his best parting shot would be to speak up in the name of progress and shed some light on the internal goings on'

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  139. But Chelsea weren't signing De Bruyne, Salah, Oscar, and Hazard with the intention of loaning them out.

    They were all young but somewhat or incredibly established to begin with.

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  140. If Rafa holds you - as you claim - in such high esteem, please gently tell him never to return. Cheers.

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  141. It's like a poker player... every poker player remembers the big hands they lose but not the ones they win.


    Buying prospects is a system that is going to fail far more times than it succeeds.


    And furthermore, it takes time for the prospects to develop.


    I completely understand why people are frustrated with this policy from LFC's perspective. I am just as frustrated as the next fan. But I also understand why the club is enacting this policy.

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  142. As much like I agree with the sentiment, the reality now is it's not going to happen, and we may actually have to wait until Xmas for any blood letting.

    Shame :(

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  143. Utter nonsense. In his first season, Eriksen got 22 goals/assists in 36 games for Spurs, which is excellent for a young player new to the league.

    If Markovic, or Lallana - who already had Premier League experience - got anywhere near those figures, I'd be ecstatic. Both players utterly failed to make a consistent impact, which is why they're both (at this stage) transfer flops.

    Eriksen clearly performed effectively, irrespective of what you say, and I maintain to this day that losing out on him for £11m is a transfer mistake of epic proportions.

    Lallana should be embarrassed that a young player with no Prem experience outperformed him in his first year in the league.

    Lallana, Markovic, Aspas, Borini and Alberto: Combined cost = £74m (approx)

    Eriksen: £11m.

    End of story.

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  144. What I'd like to see happen is for City to up their offer by £5m every time, for LFC to reject ALL bids, and then get the lad to sit on the bench.

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  145. Brilliant!! I which we were allowed to L*O*L on here because reading that for me caused an absolute Lolcano of epic proportions.
    That ending too... very David Chase, love it!

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  146. Brilliant!! I which we were allowed to L*O*L on here because reading that for me caused an absolute L.o.lcano of epic proportions.
    That ending too... very David Chase, love it!

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  147. Agree about keeping Sterling on the bench @ £35k per week to teach the lad and his agent a lesson in humility.

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  148. Thats what irritates me most about him. His inability to say no.
    I mean come on BR, if you don't like all the strikers that the TC bought, you need to say no beforehand. What other choice do you have, go through a season without a strike force? I wonder how will that work out? Oh wait.....

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  149. So is that ALL your loyal support is worth, a pair of trainers...?

    Myself.. I'd have asked for at least a T-shirt to go along with that ;-)

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  150. Dam it that's two attempts at replying gone for a burden, that was superb Sir, you can think of the laugh out loudness that did for me though.
    In case they are gone never to see the light of day - to summarise - loved it! and the ending - very David Chase, we may never know what happened to Balo...

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  151. Utter nonsense? That people would have slated Eriksen? Spurs fans weren't shy of giving him a hard time. Eriksen got a lot of flak for his performances in his first season. He was naive and often disappeared completely from games. He offered little or nothing in the build-up or defence, and just wanted to supply through-balls and finishes. His stats are massaged by the fact he took all the set-pieces.

    Yet I agree that we should have got him, I just don't think he'd have been the answer to our most urgent questions. He'd have competed with Coutinho and Sterling and I don't see how that would have worked really. Arguably he'd have created a problem, rather than solving one, and the squad needed investment elsewhere. Whether it got it or not is another matter.

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  152. Yeah man, it is the fans but they are just jumping on the news released....


    ...and the news released is when LFC, our brill club, try their best to be enthusiastic about some progress in the transfer market but it just happens to be exactly what the fans 'don't' want...i.e. young blood with the basics to succeed...fans want, as you say, Ronaldo and Messi, so they flip out completely and because it is sooooo highlighted it 'seems' as if it is being 'shoved down our throats'...


    ...I'll take a breath now... :)

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  153. And some water and a Gillian Anderson :)

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  154. Balo, Borini and Lambert (injured Sturridge) was the strike force last season. Never made use of the his strikers (excluding Sturridge being injured). I assume you are saying Strike force meaning prolific?


    Now we have Danny Ings, problem solved :-o

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  155. Oooooh, ...which one...?....hmmmm...


    ...I'll take them both..... ;-)

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  156. Sorry Stan, he's on holiday, I said I'd stand in....


    ...but if you read below Orme and I had a tete a tete about beer and Jack Daniels...so I'm busy trying it out...for research purposes only of course...
    ...so maybe we take a look at this issue with twatter and flickbook a bit later...

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  157. I imagine maybe when he took the job he thought he could influence things from the inside and perhaps with decent results on pitch, FSG would gradually bend to his will and loosen their grip on the reins.
    I agree there must come a point in time when you have to realise that, that isn't happening and stand up for what you believe and say 'no' - no longer will I tow the party line and allow things to be done in my name which I do not agree with.

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  158. ...superb dude, superb...


    ...loved it...


    ...will there be a series two...?

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  159. ...No Case the gremlin lives...he just gives the impression you've got him on the run...


    ..but then he morphs..and eats innocuous literary food....

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  160. In his last season at Man City, Balotelli scored 1 goal in his last 19 PL games. He's OK in Serie A (where the likes of Luca Toni end up joint top scorers) but the PL is clearly a step too high for him, as we've noticed again this season.

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  161. Something bad happens when Gizmo eats though :o)

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  162. ...8-/....


    ...if Gizmo= Jaimie...then imagine what 'pops' out when Jaimie eats...

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  163. Do I have too, I was finding him really quite agreeable as a beer swilling crocodile wrangler, I don't want to sully that image already.

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  164. Sahin was expensive loan signing IMO. There was a reason his loan was cut short.
    .
    He couldn't get best out of Allen whom he called Welsh Xavi and a bargain at 15mn. Not something you would say about a squad player? Borini was good for all other clubs he played. He hardly ever got good run of games at Liverpool and never as a striker. You think BR has handled his darlings well then good for you. As I have always said that you look at brighter side of things even if there is no actual bright side.
    .
    Emre Can was wasteful at RB and his weakness was continuously exploited by opposition many times. He hardly played as a CM and you think he is not ready? Why do you think that? If he is not ready for his natural position then how is he ready to play in defense? Are you just justifying BR's tactics for the sake of it?
    .
    You say Can is not ready for CM, Markovic and Moreno are young and too soon to be judged? That's combined total of 40mn!! We were in a position to cement our place in top 4 this season if that money was used right. Under the circumstances, BR and TC wasted that 40mn for a speculative hope of good future with these young so called talented players. Again Markovic played in a position he wasn't familiar with. You wanna justify that too?
    .
    You are ignoring all other duds? Why? They cost good money. I forgot to mention Ilori as well. I think according to you there has never been a coach like BR and he should be handed 10 year contract. He has done nothing wrong since he came to Liverpool.
    .
    I said nothing against the names you mentioned because I think this discussion started when I said BR couldn't get best out of "most" players. I think it was obvious that there are exceptions like Suarez and Gerrard who would do well under any manager due to their qualities. And Carragher? Really? He only got a chance when Skrtel and Agger performed really bad. Carra himself said that he is retiring as he wasn't the first choice anymore. Ditto Henderson. BR almost sold him to Fulham for Dempsey. He preferred Allen over Henderson until it was quite clear to everybody that who was the better player.
    .
    And of course, you will laugh from where you are sitting. Because deluded people are always happy people. I promised myself not to debate with someone who is so one-sided and talks nothing factual. This will be my last reply to you.

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  165. Combined value of those duds is very high and its not gambling when you know you are gonna lose. We have 0% success so why even try (gamble)?
    .
    Sahin was a high wage loan signing. Why buy Sahin if you are not going to play him as per his strengths? Ditto Balotelli.

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  166. I retract the 'utter nonsense' part :-)

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  167. Think we're all a bit Eeyore at times mate, and at the end of the day he surely has some assets we'd all be happy with ;-)
    Since Brendan took charge it's all been a bit Tigger to be fair, you know, up and down a bit. Let's hope we're going bounce back in style this season :)

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  168. The policy is fine, It's the implementation that is so important .
    Liverpool needs 7 or 8 senior players that can guide and help the youngsters growth and develop .

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  169. There's no sense writing controversial things on the internet if you don't want people to disagree with you, is there? I'm not going to carry this on if you don't wanna tho'. Your loss ;)

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  170. Thanks mate! I'll see what I can do :)

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  171. Cheers Case :)

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  172. Blooming right it does, I'd bite your arm off with that offer.

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  173. voice of reason5:10 pm, June 17, 2015

    i'm saying there promoting mediocrity with there articles... there is no critical journalism with there articles.... i'm not saying they should be all doom and gloom but not once have they even produced an article questioning whether the manager should get the sack... what has been his faults.. or questioning his suitability to the job

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  174. You guys should not allow yourselves to become divided and conquered.
    I've enjoyed reading your exchange and it's put me in mind of my recently learned Schrodingers cat scenario - Mike's initial topic I gather and I probably do him a disservice by using it so poorly but that's not going to stop me from trying:
    I read a post of Robo' and agree and then an opposing one of yours and agree, so I go back, re-read and try and decide who's right, it can't be done... maybe it's a case of agree to disagree - no I don't think it is, I re-read again and still agree with both simultaneously.
    Can two opposing views both be right at the same time - works for me.

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  175. Class clown you mean.

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  176. voice of reason5:27 pm, June 17, 2015

    perfect rodgers will get the sack..... YAY

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  177. After the Jack and Beer is something I would love to see.....

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  178. Another headline to get readers going to JK site and reading what every other media outlet has already written...........
    I'd say keep Ballo though. Media hunt made him look worse than he actually was. Although he didn't have a good season his ability is there. He wouldn't represent Italy and all the other clubs he's played for if he didn't have the talent

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  179. Between swigs of Jack anyhow.... I'd go with a snorkel.... I was axtually trying to remember whether LFC made a fuss about Lambert they way Ings, Bogdan and that other bloke have been played up.... I don't remember..

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  180. Ha! Yeah I'm happy, just like I'm a BR apologist and a plastic fan and any other derisiory comment you can muster.... Problem is not who LFC buy, it's fans that can't except LFC are no longer the LFC most probably never even saw play.... That was LFC of the past, and we still didn't buy world class players... This is LFC today... why do you expect them to all of a sudden buy world class players.... LFC have always bought players with potential and turned them into world class.. and thery are stil doing it..... You don't think a £40m offer for sterling is something to admire about the club, given that he came for peanuts... Or the £50m for Torres, or £65/75m for Suarez.....LFC don't, and have never bought ready made world class....

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  181. There is something in what you say, but it is the same for any player when moving clubs. It may work or it wont. For many different reasons. In a players career he may move 6 times. 4 or 5 were great, 1 was not. Where the blame lies is another whole ball game. It is life. Football is life, formed from life, played by living breathing ordinary human beings. It throws up as many scenarios on the pitch and off the pitch,
    as life itself does for us all. Where the blame lies? Only father time now knows. YNWA

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  182. I hope he stays and proves all the critics wrong and come out fighting with the glint of honours in his eyes.

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  183. We're talking about two different things here.


    1. How the paper covers the team from a reporting perspective is not promoting any agenda one way or the other.


    2. Your issue sounds like it's more in line with a lack of columnist perspective. Keep in mind that there really hasn't been much dialog coming out of LFC over the past 3+ weeks, so a columnist would be writing based purely on conjecture without much to go on. It's not as if FSG or Rodgers have come out and shown their cards on what exact direction their going.

    Furthermore, where the columnists have spoken is regarding the transfers, and all they've really said is that the players brought in are nice, but cannot be the centerpieces to the summer business. Regardless of my or your feelings on the given players (Milner, Ings, and Bogdan), I think we can all agree that they cannot be the centerpieces to our summer business for it to be successful.


    From that perspective, I can't really criticize the coverage of the team in the Echo. The columnists may not be calling for Rodgers head. But they certainly have not given the glowing endorsements that you are portraying.


    Just going back to their "Sport Opinion" section on the website, Ian Doyle goes so far as to call Liverpool a selling club.


    You want to take a dig at Lawrenson or Aldridge, that's fine. They are typically going to be more inclined to be pro-club since they are ex-players, but they have certainly shown a willingness to be critical as well.


    All in all, I simply don't think your view of the Echo as some sort of LFC propaganda machine is accurate.

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  184. Another 12 year-old PATHETIC

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  185. Buck has ruined Mario. He's a disaster, from first signing to his backroom team, he's been a complete Joke. No Gerrard/Suarez/Sturridge to paper over the MASSIVE gaps .. If he had anything about him, he'd walk

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  186. BR is definitely culpable. His handling of Balotelli is disgraceful. Then again, the same is true of his handling of everyone in the team with the exception of Mignolet, only because he can't play him out of position.

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  187. No he did it the first year without Sturridge. But under the King Suarez struggled to hit the broadside of a barn. BR changed Suarez and Suarez himself says that.

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  188. voice of reason8:26 pm, June 17, 2015

    i credit your response and i would go into a critical arguement with you but urgh i need to work again on my thesis soooooo i can't waste time today as i'm leaving the country next week so here's my one article as to why i say the Echo is promoting mediocrity at the club

    http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/liverpool-fc-fixtures-201516-flying-9458613

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  189. I'm not exactly sure how the article promotes mediocrity?


    Most of the historical seasons they reference have us finishing 1st

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  190. He's called Gomez though, lads. Sounds like a foreign fancy Daniel to me. Has to be worth something. Maybe we've moved on to collecting Brits with more exotic sounding names. Gomez, Lallana, Ojo, Ibe- even Lambert brings to mind Christopher Lambert out of Highlander and Mortal Kombat.

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  191. voice of reason4:14 am, June 18, 2015

    made the adjustments to my thesis.... sigh anyone else thinks thesis supervisors are as*******.... anyway.... i meant that they we're trying to lower expectations stating that we might not be firing on all cylinders at the start of the season..... but as based on prior seasons when we start bad but finished really welll that doesn't mean to give up hope and attack the manager.... thats how i interpreted the article.... maybe i overanalyzed it but imo i read between the lines.... and with this fixtures list i don't know if BR will manage to keep his job

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  192. Well, with De Bruyne they were, and I suspect they got Salah just to rub our noses in it, but for the other two I agree.

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  193. The bite was probably the tipping point, yes. I suppose that peak-sell model still robs us of a bit of the romance; there's something about a Gerrard or a Dalglish that's pretty cool for people like me.

    But needs must, I guess. I understand the need for player sales to fund player purchases, but that leaves us in a bit of an awkward spot if we ever try to improve an excellent team - last season is a case in point. Am I misunderstanding you?

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