Gerard Houllier - RIP :-(

28 Jul 2009

Great - that makes it £30m Rafael Benitez has wasted in the last year

Over the last year, Rafael Benitez has wasted a huge chunk of the club’s money on transfers that, for whatever reason, just didn’t work out. With news that Liverpool have reportedly accepted a £4.3m bid from Napoli for left-back Andrea Dossena, this money-wasting trend seems set to continue.

I think we can all agree that last summer was an utter disaster for Liverpool when it came to transfers. In total, Benitez spent approximately £37m on the following players:

Robbie Keane - £20m
Albert Riera - £8m
Andrea Dossena - £7m
David N’gog - £1.5m
Philip Degen – Free

From the above, Albert Riera was the only worthy buy from last summer. Keane was subbed/on the bench for 28 of his 33 appearances and completely mismanaged by Benitez; Dossena had two good games all season; N’gog is destined for the scrapheap (how many young players have made it as first team regulars under Benitez?); and Philip Degen – even though he was free – has been a complete waste of space.

Removing Riera's fee and taking into account the other transfer fees, wages, appearance bonuses, signing on fees etc, I conservatively estimate that Benitez has wasted about £30m of the club’s money in the last year alone, though the actual figure is probably higher than that.

We’re so blas√© about the insane amounts of money in football these days that £30m probably doesn’t sound like much, but given the club’s precarious financial state, £30m is a very significant amount.

None of the players above has improved the team or made any consistent, significant impact, so it is fair to say that Benitez paid £30m for basically nothing.

And look at the players who Benitez dumped so he could waste all that money: Peter Crouch, John Arne Riise and Steve Finnan.

Would we have been any worse off if all three players had stayed? Arguably no. In fact, I submit that the team would actually have been far better off.

Of course, Benitez alienated all three of the aforementioned players with his destructive rotation system/preference for playing his 'favourites', so keeping them probably wasn't an option anyway.

In 2002, Gerard Houllier signed El Hadji Diouf, Salif Diao and Bruno Cheyrou for combined total of £19m. We all know what happenend the season following those purchases. Luckily, Benitez's wastefulness with money did not result in the same slide down the league, but that doesn't change the fact that £30m could have been spent more wisely.

This year, Benitez has spent £17m on Glenn Johnson, which in my view is slightly overpriced. Let’s hope he actually turns out to be a success and the £17m doesn’t end up being yet more wasted money.



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147 comments:

  1. what are you talking about, got back 15-18 for Keane, getting 5 back from 7 for Doss, do these figures not count or is it only the money going out that counts

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  2. £15-£18m for Keane?! Show me your source please.

    Whather we made money back is not the issue here - the fact remains that money was wasted, money which could have been spent more wisely. A corrected mistake is still a mistake.

    The bottom line is the money should have been spent better. Why exactly did Benitez buy Degen>! He had a suspect injury history before joining Liverpool. It was obvious that Keane was the wrong player for Liverpool and wouldn't fit into the system. More care needs to be take with some transfers.

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  4. 'Luckily, Benitez's wastefulness with money did not result in the same slide down the league'

    It's not luck, it's managerial skill and the ability to produce a consistently effective team. If Benitez makes a mistake in the transfer market he rectifies it promptly and that seems very sensible to me. Lord knows where you conjure your figures from in any event...

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  5. Robbie Keane - £20m --- 15m min recouped
    Albert Riera - £8m --- not exactly a waste of money
    Andrea Dossena - £7m --- 5m recouped
    David N’gog - £1.5m --- a bit early to judge, but in my opinion will prove to be a bargain
    Philip Degen – Free

    so at the most that 7m wasted as you put it, but yet Riera, ngog and degens valuation would have gone up so perhaps there is no money lost overall, some people obviously need to get a grip on reality

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  6. You lot are clueless

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  7. But Benitez has recouped most of the money from Keane by selling him back to Spurs. Lost £2milion on Dossena, but he got that back with the £4.5million for Arbeloa, who he only paid £2.5million for. The books are pretty much balanced. What's your point?

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  9. With regards to Keane-it didn't work out and Rafa did well to get most the money back for him with bonuses.Degen was unlucky to be injured for the majority of last season so we can't judge him yet.Riera has improved the balance of the team and Dossena tried but is better suited to the Italian league.

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  10. I agree - Benitez did well last season and should be applauded. However, this does not change the fact that last summer's transfer window was largely unsuccessful. If the money was spent on the right player/s it could have made all the difference.

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  13. I dont agree with you comments about Benitez wasting thirty million. it seems that you are agaisnt him as you forgotten that we got 15 million back for robbie Keene.
    All managers make mistakes in transfer markets and one thing with Benitez, if his transfer does not work, he gets rid of the player. In genral his transfer policy has been success as we are a stronger team and a player like torres for 20 million was absolute bargain. we most likely could sell him 4 times more.
    lets be frank, right now if we did not have Benitez as our manager, we would be in much worse situation. we are lucky to have him as manager. Just listen to people like King Kenny or sammy lee, who always had the interest of Liverpool in heart. they tell you that he is doing a good job. the palyers such as Gerrad and Carragher prasie him too, and see how Ferguson for frist time in years has taken so much interest in attacking Liverpool manager before the season starts.
    I could go on more about his transfer policy but all I say, we are better team since he came to Liverpool and this is when liverpool owners have been not as supportive to the manager as they should be.
    lets get behind our team and stop putting our palyers down before they had kicked a ball.
    thanks

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  15. Carl - my point is that money was wasted on players who obviously were wrong for the club. Just because the books are balanced later down the line doesn't mean the mistake is expunged. If we had bought the right players last summer perhaps we would have won the league. Who knows.

    Benitez has made some excellent transfers, but it cannot be denied that he has bought alot of real dross and wasted lots of money over the last 5 years. This trend needs to stop in my view.

    *Waits for someone to inevitably bring United/Arsenal/Chelsea transfers into the equation*

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  17. I have to give you this, if money had been spent on the right players last summer, things would have been much much better. Dossena was a waste of money, so was Robbie Keane..Had we got David Silva or Villa for that much...a bloke can dream can't he? At least this summer it seems there has been some progress on that. Johnson is a good buy, though a tad more than we would have wanted to pay, and if as reports suggest SIlva comes in for 23 million, it would be great..

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  20. A stupid article to say the list. Has the writer a crystal ball to predict the future? I certainly know that Rafa doesn't. He took risk just like anyone of us each day of our life for without risks there is no distinct move forward. I do hope that the writer takes risks occasionaly for if not his life must be a complete bore!!!

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  21. A rubbish article really! almost all investment in Keene was recovered, invested more by Parry than Rafa. N'gog will definitely prove he is worth more than 1.5m. Dossena is now a regular international for Italy and we may lose 2m at the most on him. If Rafa had funds to buy Boswinga, etc. he would not spend on Dossena or a free Degen. Alonso bought for 10m, now worth 30m. Torres bought for 20m, now worth 60m. Mash bought for 18 now more than double in value.

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  22. Harry - you're spot on. There are thousands of footballers in the world; Benitez could have bought better players who fitted into the system. Instead, he wasted £30m on players who have made no impact at all.

    Buying one - just one - player with that wasted money who was on the quality level of Torres/Alonso/Masch and keeping Crouch, Finnan and Riise = League title in my opinion.

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  24. I have a thought... How do you know a player is 'right' before he is bought and tested. Sure a player may look good on TV but put him in a new team with a new manager in a new country and it can all go wrong. I have players in mind that I'd love to see in the Liverpool shirt but who knows they'd actually be a success? The manager identifies skills/traints in players and has to judge whether they would suit his team and tactics. If he gets it wrong, he sells them on and tries again. It's the same princoiple as you buying a shirt that looks good in the shop but when you get it home it looks rubbish on you so yeu never use it and sell it on ebay! Either trust his judgement or get off his back - he's human and he is a red.

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  26. Andrew - read the comment policy above. Repost your argument without the insults and I will be happy to respond. Cheers.

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  27. Absolutely spot-on article.
    Every manager should make sure that every single signing he makes turns into a world class player (no matter if he spends £20m on Keane or £1.5m on Ngog).
    Like Jamie says, there are thousand of other players he could have bought (Shevchenko, Kalou, Berbatov, Manucho, Ramsey, Rosicky etc) and none of those have been failures at big clubs.
    I mean, even that useless Javier Mascherano... what a complete waste of money he has been!
    http://www.liverpool-kop.com/2007/12/spending-17m-on-javier-mascherano-is.html

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  28. Jason - fair enough. So how do you explain Philip Degen? Played only 10 games for Borussia Dortmund the season before coming to Liverpool due to injury and has a history of injuries in the preceding 5 years. What was the point in wasting wages on him when there are young players who could sit on the bench just as well as him?

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  29. I'm sorry, but how can it be a waste if we ended the Season in a higher position than the previous season, having scored more goals than anyone in the Premier League, and with the highest points total in our history? Regardless of whether or not the players worked out or not, Benitez got the results. Ferguson can also point to poor buys (Berbotov, Hargreaves, Owen(oh wait, too soon?)) among his good buys over the last couple of Seasons but still finishing with good results; do Manc fans consider them wastes or do they still trus their Manager. Like it or not the Transfer market is a lottery, and sometimes a seemingly sure thing can often backfire; and if you can still pull in credible results regardless, then how can they be considered a waste? What business on this planet operates without operating losses, and with a perfect investment record? I mean come on. Don't just slad Bentez because you enjoy doing so; make a good case for it at least. You might have the gumption to admit that if you weren't so busy deleting people's posts trying to tell you so. Same as you're about to do to this one for me saying so.

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  30. May i suggest you take a more balanced impartial approach, you appear to have a hidden agenda, but then by all accounts, Liverpool fans are more than used to this?

    Keane cost £19 million and sold him for £16million So a cost of £3million. Not a bad return for 5 goals and around 10 assists.

    Reira did cost 8million - but as you state - for a left winger who has done enough to warrant that price - who can complain.

    Dossena - not the defensive wb we needed or wanted - but his goal against United alone is worth the £2million we look at loosing on him. ill take that.

    Ngog - £1.5 million for a great young prospect who has scored 3 in 19 (total subs) who is prepared to sit on the bench and play second fiddle - the lads a great prospect and proving it. So while we largely disagree regarding the players, after all I only go every week but lest review the actually cost and spends of Rafa as your title invites.

    Last year we sold: Sissoko (£8.2m), Lee Peltier (free), Rise (£4.2m), Kewell (free), Le Tallec (undisc), Crouch (£11m), Guthrie (£2.25m), Carson (£3.35), Finnan (undisc), Keane £16m)

    Total SOLD : £44.7 million
    Total Bought last year: Degen (£free), Dossena (£7m), Cavalieri (£3.5), Ngog (£1.5), Keane £19m), Riera (£8m)

    Total BOUGHT: £39million

    So Rafa actually made £5.7million, not included fees for Peltier and Le Tallec. So your article actually claims Rafa wasted £30 million, when 30 mins of research shows he actually sold more than we bought in, we made a profit and we closed the gap on the billion pound debt riddled scum - not bad eh.

    Think what he will do now Parry has gone and he has more control.

    In Rafa the fans most defo trust.

    All sources and facts from lfchistory.net

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  31. dont judge for the 1st season played...the age doesn't mean anything for u? the misscelanous? think of it again...

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  32. Neildmartin - don't twist my argument or anything will you? ;-)

    The Mascherano article needs to be considered in context. At the time, Liverpool were crying out for flair, not another central midfielder. I still believe that Mascherano's £17m should have been spent on the nest creative player we could get for that price. Masch is a good player but Liverpool could have survivde without him.

    And yes, there *are* thousands of other footballers out there. Players bought do not need to be turned into world class players but it would be nice if they could actually fit into the sytem and make some kind of impact, don't you think?

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  33. Jaimie Kanwar said:
    "Buying one - just one - player with that wasted money who was on the quality level of Torres/Alonso/Masch ....... = League title in my opinion."

    Oh, wait. Masch? Is that the same Mascherano, whom you yourself accused Benitez of 'WASTING' 17 Million on not too long ago? You know, in this article:

    http://www.liverpool-kop.com/2007/12/spending-17m-on-javier-mascherano-is.html


    That one? The same one wanted by the defending Champions League winners Barcelona? One thing's for certain; You sure seem to know a whole lot more about the transfer market than Benitez does. Without a doubt.

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  34. Firstly, no one is perfect. Benitez is certainly no god. He is human after all. As a matter of fact even Sir Alex had made many errors in the past (remember Veron?)

    For me what differentiates Rafa & Sir Alex with Houllier is that they are willing to admit their mistake and ship the players out at the earliest possible moment.

    Houllier however were too stubborn to admit his mistakes and continue keeping players like Diouf and Cheyrou hoping that they will turn good someday.

    Lets look at Robbie Keane situation, firstly it was claimed by some quarters that it wasnt Rafa's 1st choice; Rafa wanted Barry but was blocked by Parry. Keane came in, and was shipped out in Jan because Rafa does not want to risk selling him at a lower price at the end of the season. That for me is a sensible move by the manager.

    As for dossena, he has struggled with injuries and the fast pace of english league. with Aurellio injury record, he cannot risk disposing Dossenna like how he did for Keane. But with Insua rising among the backup, we can afford to let Dossena go.

    I do agree that last summer buy were not successful, but i am glad that Benitez does not have the ego of Houllier and rectifies his mistakes immediately. That for me is the making of a great manager.

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  35. What a really dissapointing Article, It shows no understanding of how player purchases are done in the top flight with the exception of the lunacy at Man City and Real Madrid most deals are not settled on outright lump sum purchases for example:
    Liverpool had not even paid half the agreed fee to Spurs for Keane by the time he returned (hence why the return deal was reported at between 15-18 mil) added to CL appearance fees etc and I think you will find that LFC lost very little on the deal (not 5-7 mil as per this article)

    As for Dosena, again the final sum for his purchase was to be determined by appearances etc and certainly wouldn't have been a cash payment of 7mill and with sell on fees etc the gap between what LFC paid for ACTUALLY paid and what they sell him for will be very small.

    finally I think it is very early in both their careers and time at LFC to call Degan,Ngog etc a waste of money. The same was being said about Yossi not too long ago and now he is an integral part of the squad.

    More research next time please!

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  36. Andrew - your 'bought figures' do not include wages. signing on fees, appearance fees etc. And Dossena's goal v Man U owrth £2m? Surely you jest?!

    In any event, such a comparison is irrelevent; it's fine to make money back *after the fact* but what about the impact on the team's success in the intervening time period?

    We may have made money back on Keane et al but the point is *what might Liverpool have achieved if the right players had been bought the first time!?*

    This is a legitimate question and one that should not just be brushed aside.

    Keane, Dossena and N'gog have made no significant impact on the team.

    If we had bought someone else with the money wasted on them - say, spent £25m on the best creative player available to us in that price bracket; someone who had been properly researched and would fit into our system - then is it not possible that our chances of winning the league, or indeed any trophy, would have increased?

    As a result of the wasted money, Liverpool missed out on the services of a player who could have made a difference. I refuse to accept that there is no one out there in world football who could have done the job.

    Benitez was distracted last summer with his protracted pursuit of Gareth Barry and his illogical purchase of Robbie Keane. Consequently, Dossena and Degen were rushed purchased (IMO) and this shows in their failure to make any impact.

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  37. U can't get ever transfer right~ His transfer nous may seem dodgy, but players value increase and drop depending on how well he performs during the course of the season, and sometimes how unlucky he is when injuries come around. There's no hard and fast rule on buying players (unless u are a football manager computer game fanatic)..especially since buying players from abroad does not come with a guarantee that players definitely will settle in a new country/league and fit like a glove in the team.

    On keane, we all know how good a player keane can be, but above all, the coach and trainers see the players day in and out and they can pick the best for the team. As a manager, after buying a player and realizing that the player doesn't fit in, what should u do? do u continue to play him, or leave him out? i see benitez handling of keane as responsible, because an irresponsible manager would bow to expectations and simply play keane in every match, all the while knowing that things could and would be better with gerrard playing in 'the hole'.

    Also, over the past year, LFC more or less had the spine of the team settled with alonso, gerrard, skrtel, carragher, masch, and torres, which is why other players brought in were meant to improve on what they had already at that point in time, which were wing-backs in depth that could offer something different to the players already at the club. dossena was to provide good crossing ability which the team lacked whenever aurelio was injured(alot). I do not believe riise's crossing is in the same league.

    My opinion is that LFC is a huge football club, which can afford to take risk on players who would bring that extra to the club. Remember, to avoid relegation, a club needs to be consistent. But to win titles, sometimes the club needs to take risks, and while we recognise degen, n'gog, dossena and keane as risks, we shan't forget that fernando torres was a risk, as was mascherano, as was riera, and not to forget, n'gog is improving by the day. Try watching his contributions for the France U21s. He's gonna be something in the near future.

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  38. LFC did not pay the full transfer fee for Keane, he cost not including wages 4-5 Mill.
    A waste yes but everyone seemed to think he was the missing link, which of course he was not.

    LFC did not pay 21 mill for him full stop

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  39. Some of the comments on top of the original article are pretty shocking and clueless. We have to forget about players like Villa who we cannot afford or need (we play one up front! You can't buy a £40m player to have in reserve). Keane was bought because he can fit in different positions up front. He didn't work out. Rafa did what few managers would - admitted it hadn't worked out and got as much money back as quickly as possible. The only reason we didn't win the league last season is Gerrard and Torres missed too many games. Not a difficult one to work out. Dossena was bought and basically gave Aurellio a kick up the backside which proved positive. Only Insua's emergence made his departure an obvious one. Riera is now a first choice Spanish international (he keeps Silva out of the side!). Good business but not mentioned. He might be worth £15m now - which would clear the loss on Keane. The hit on Dossena would be recouped from a sale of Degen (he would fetch £2m).

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  40. Jaimie Kanwar said:

    "Players bought do not need to be turned into world class players but it would be nice if they could actually fit into the sytem and make some kind of impact, don't you think?"

    Yes, unlike that Javier Mascherano, who did nothing more than stunt the growth of that promising other lad Sissoko - according to you, anyway. In no way did Masch fit into the system, or make any kind of impact or appreciable return on that 17million we 'wasted' on him; just stunting the development of other players and creating unnecessary competition in midfield (because that's a bad thing, after all).

    According to you, anyway:-

    http://www.liverpool-kop.com/2007/12/spending-17m-on-javier-mascherano-is.html

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  41. If you take his spending further he has completely rebuilt the squad from the 1st team right through to the acedemy for a net spend of 87mill ( source Times online). This is without selling any of his big stars - if we do sell alonso this net spend will tumble even lower.

    So 87mill for a group of players that are good enough to challenge for the league and who would be worth many times that figure if they where sold.
    Not bad for a manager that wastes money.

    You always take such a narrow view of things just to bash rafa and the team. Like us drawing a few preseason games, another mountain out of a mole hill article. So much for your other draw prediction , what was it 5:0 - shame the team cant create or take chances.

    You also make wild claims such as we would have won the league if we had held onto crouch, finnan and risse. No facts involved, just "your opinion". An opinion you will argue to the death , even in the face of everybody disagreeing with you. Even though that opinion can never be proved one way or the other.

    and rafa is nothing like houllier when it comes to transfer policy. Yes he makes mistakes , because nothing is certain in this world, but unlike houlier he realises his mistakes and gets rid, usually at a small profit. Houllier held on to his players even when it was obvious to everyone they should be moved on, ie all the players you listed.

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  42. Clarence - notice I stated 'on the quality level of Torres/Alonso/Masch'.

    Quality level is the key phrase here. Masche is a quality player; this has nothing to do with my point in that article which was that the £17m should have been spent on a creative player, not another defensive minded central mid.

    The article does not cast aspersions on Masch's ability; it questions whether *at that time* Liverpool really needed him. There is a difference.

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  43. I STILL CANT BELIEVE WE OWN TORRES.... IM SO HAPPY WHEN I THINK ABOUT IT.

    HE IS ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!!

    WELL DONE RAFA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  44. Brando - 90% of the stuff written about football is opinion. It is perfectly reasonable to have an opinion based on probability and past experience. This site clearly about opinions, so what's the point of complaining when articles state...opinions?!

    The question is, would Crouch, Riise and Finnan have been any worse thasn Dossena, Keane and N'gog?

    To answer this question, we can look at the impact each of the aforementioned players has had on the team and then form an opinion, which in my case is that Crouch, Riise and Finnan could possibly have been worth an extra 5 league points between them over the season.

    Hardly an outrageous claim....

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  45. "Repost your argument without the insults and I will be happy to respond. Cheers."

    Unless, someone posts something that proves I know nothing about football... and then it will be removed!!

    So come on Jamie lad, which one of the 'thousand' of players should we have spent £20m on instead of Keane that would been a 'guaranteed' success?!

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  46. "Brando - 90% of the stuff written about football is opinion. It is perfectly reasonable to have an opinion based on probability and past experience. This site clearly about opinions, so what's the point of complaining when articles state...opinions?!"

    And why are you complaining about Brando's opinion that you are talking nonsense?

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  47. neildmartin - the comment policy is quite clear: comments that include insults, irrespective of merit, will be deleted. There are various LFC message boards around if you people want to engage in slanging matches. This site is for civilised debate, not cyber yobs.

    I do not profess to have an encycolpaedic knowledge of world football, but there are plenty of players out there who could have done a better job than the dfross Benitez bought last summer. I don't need to name examples as this point is indisputale.

    And I did not state anywhere thbat players signed should 'guarantee success'. You just made that up.

    Again - if Benitez had spent that money on one or more players who could actually have a positive impact on the team, then it#'s probable that would have had a knock on effect on our pursuit of trophies last season, lest we forget it is now 3 years without winning anything.

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  48. How can anyone say that money on Ngog abd Riera was wasted? Can the Poster please explain that to everyone as there is simply no sense in it.

    Dossena is or has been Italy's No 1 left back so buying him was perfectly good sense - he could still work out here and I didn't hear you whingeing on when he scored at old Trafford.But to balance the books it is logical that he should be allowed to go now that Insua has made the grade.

    And excatly how much did you whinge when Rafa bought Robbie Keane ? Please just tell us exactly what criticisms you made at the time ? It should be interesting - since everybody else was raving about it. And he didn't cost us £20 million net - do get your facts right - more like £5m.

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  49. this is a stupid article...PERIOD! rafa made us a profit last year as discussed above, so to say he wasted money doesn't make any sense (simple accounting) also, you talk about buying the RIGHT PLAYERS...WEL, rafa never really wanted keane in the first place coz he knew that he would not it into his tactics. remember that he wanted gareth barry and parry never made it happen. had we got barry, i don't think hewould have never bought riera anyway coz barry is capable of playin on the left.

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  50. Not sure how you can call Rafas signings last year poor when we finished the season second, reached the CL semis and beat Man U and Chelsea home and away. I agree it wasnt his best season for signings but Riera was inspired. Ngog was a bargain for 1.5 and will recoup more than double that if sold. Keane could have been amazing if he could have converted a few of the SITTERs he missed. He should have been good but bottled it at this level. Someone should make a youtube video of all his misses. CAnt blame rafa for that. Also Keane was a bighead and moaned the whole time on the pitch. No other LFC player screams and moans all the time. It was obvious that he didnt fit into the dressing room. Again not Rafa's fault. No one ever holds Fergi up as a poor operator in the transfer market but he has bought some howlers. If Rafa had bought Berba for that price he would have been fired simple as that.

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  51. Jaimie if that is true then why were you, in the same article lamenting the impending departure of Sissoko - as a result of Mascherano's purchase, and emergence as a better defensive midfield option (which you yourself admitted in that same article). You claim that at the time Liverpool did not need Mascherano, yet at the same time admitted that he was better than Sissoko (that makes sense - because we never EVER need the better player, right?), but that Sissoko had greater potential to be a better player than Masch( yeah, history has reeeeally proven you right on that one - Benitez sure got that one oh-so-wrong).

    And THEN, you lament the unecessary competition being created in midfield by the introduction of a 'better' (again, by your own admission) defensive midfielder, while stating that the funds could have been better spent on a more creative player (in a midfield that already had 2 creative midfielders in Gerrard and Xabi - so no competition to worry about on that end then). So naturally it was not shocking when a year or so later you were lambasting Benitez again, for going after a creative midfielder (Barry), only a year after you had complained that he was sacrificing creativity for a defensive mindset. Self-Contradict much?

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  52. Feel free to post the exact comment that means I am a 'cyber yob'!

    I'd have thought if you confidently state there are 'thousands' of players Rafa could have bought instead of Keane then it wouldn't be too hard to name one or two of them.

    By avoiding the question, you just make it clear that all you want to do is use the benefit of hindsight to slag off signings that for whatever reason don't work (while trying to backtrack furiously when hindsight comes and bites you on the backside with regards Masch!)

    I was being ironic when I wrote that a new signing had to 'guarantee success', on the basis that otherwise you can't wait to slate them and Rafa.

    And this is from someone who thinks Lucas is one of our best players!!

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  53. Morpheus - if you read the article properly, I did NOT state that Riera was a waste of money. Quite the opposite in fact. I stated:

    "Albert Riera was the only worthy buy from last summer".

    And months before Keane was bought, I argued on this site against spending bick bucks on a second striker. At the time, I argued against David Villa, but the points I made applied to Keane also:

    June 2008 - Why LFC should not sign David Villa

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  54. Before anyone says it - yes I know you aren't criticising Riera - my mistake. But you say we all agree and it appears that no-one does ! You also write off a young talent who cost us just £1.5m and who was MOM when France played the England U21s off the park recently.

    As for your comments about Spirit of Shankly I couldn't agree more. Just as the ShareLiverpool mob are equally annoying and irrelevant. Anyway I digress.

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  55. This article represents a kind of 'handbag' view of football reminiscent of the sort expounded by the goliath-chinned Jimmy Hill many moons ago.

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  56. Neildmartin - I was not referring to you as a Cyber yob, just to people in general who try and spam the site.

    Re Masch - I stand by my view, as evidenced by the fact I wrote an article recently calling for him to be sold:

    What's the big deal? Sell Mascherano and sign these two players.

    Under Benitez, defence has never been the problem; flair and creativity has been the problem and are *still* the problem. 24 league draws in 2 seasons is, IMO, proof of that.
    Liverpool can survive without Mascherano - I thought that when we signed him and I still think that now.

    And I do not think Lucas is one of our best players. I don't know where you got that from. One of the other writers on the site wrote something recently arguing that LFC could regret it if we lost Lucas, but it wasn't me!

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  57. Yeah, a little research would have deemed this entire article completely unnecessary, if not an utter waste of time.

    Records show that Benitez actually MADE a profit on purchases and sales of players last year, and added to the fact that based on the results we got on the field (finishing higher than the years before with more goals scored and most points in history, just 4 points out, with the double over ManUre and Chelsea) he also produced the results; there should be no way any logical sane person could accuse Benitez of having 'wasted' anything last year. But then again, logic and sanity can sometimes be rare commodities on this fine planet of ours and stranger things have happened.

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  58. Can I just add on this topic that last summer Rafa was working under the control on transfers of Rick Parry. We know that Gareth Barry was top of his list just as Glen Johnmson was this summer.We can assume that Keane was No 2 on the list since he plays a different position to Barry - but only Rafa knows that. I think it is fairer to judge Rafa on his transfer dealings in 2009 since they are 100% his choice within his budget.

    Although the Alonso saga is intensely frustrating and annoying for all of us I think Benitez is 100% right in standing up to Real. About time someone did. Perez has shown his true colours today by seemingly decrying Alonso's transfer value and saying he isn't worth it. That should go down well with the player.

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  59. Do you know of a team that hasn't from time to time bought players that didn't end up setting the world on fire?

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  60. Clarence - once again, you are completely ignoring the pertinent points here:

    It's fine to make money back *after the fact* but what about the impact on the team's success in the intervening time period?

    We may have made money back on Keane et al but the point is *what might Liverpool have achieved if the right players had been bought the first time!?*

    This is a legitimate question and one that should not just be brushed aside.

    Keane, Dossena and N'gog have made no significant impact on the team.

    If we had bought someone else with the money wasted on them - say, spent £25m on the best creative player available to us in that price bracket; someone who had been properly researched and would fit into our system - then is it not possible that our chances of winning the league, or indeed any trophy, would have increased?

    As a result of the wasted money, Liverpool missed out on the services of a player who could have made a difference. I refuse to accept that there is no one out there in world football who could have done the job.

    Benitez was distracted last summer with his protracted pursuit of Gareth Barry and his illogical purchase of Robbie Keane.

    Consequently, Dossena and Degen were rushed purchased (IMO) and this shows in their failure to make any impact.

    There is a split here: on one side you have people who are condone a manager wasting m illions *as long as the wasted money is recouped*; on the other side, you have those who would rather the money was not wasted in the first place abnd the right players bought.

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  61. Waterboils - I agree with you, every team buys players that don't set the world alight, but it's all relative.

    United bought Berbatove last year; some say he hasn't done the business, but he has a premiership winner's medal! Job done.

    Benitez spent shedloads of money last season on players *who have made no positive impact on the team*. Furthermore, Livepool won nothing last season and have won nothing for three years now. I find that concerning.

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  62. "And I do not think Lucas is one of our best players. I don't know where you got that from."

    I was (possibly mistakenly) taking it from the article you wrote just over a year ago that was headlined:
    Keep Reina, Agger, Carra, Alonso, Lucas, Benayoun and Torres - Scrap the rest.

    Incidentally, I guess that means we should have scrapped that absolute waste of wages called Steven Gerrard.

    And as for 'flair and creativity has been the problem and are *still* the problem.'...
    Scoring more goals than anyone else last season (nine more than Man Utd) and having the best goal difference in the league makes a mockery of that statement.

    Yes, the draws hurt us, but the point you consistently fail to understand is that football is extremely complex from deciding who to buy, what tactics to use and which players to select - and believe it or not it won't always go perfectly.

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  63. Neildmartin - Benitez's entire reign cannot be defined by one season. Similarly, Last season should not be defined only by the final three months.

    Lack of flair and creativity has been a major problem at Liverpool over the last 10 years, during both the Houllier and Benitez reigns.

    A persistent failure to break down teams who come to defend is and continues to be an issue. Furthermore, Torres aside, not enough big money has spent on flair players.

    Players like Dirk Kuyt, Javier Mascherano and Emile Hesky are the embodiments of the Benitez/Houllier philosophy: Strenght, stamina and slefless endurance over individuality, unpredictability and genuine skill.

    If Liverpool are to have any hope of *consistently* challenging for the league, then that philosophy needs to be reversed. Big money needs to spent on the best creative players within the budget. At present, the financial half measures taken when buying so-called 'creative players' are just not cutting it.

    We shuld be spending £17m on creative players, not on defensive midfielders.

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  64. "We may have made money back on Keane et al but the point is *what might Liverpool have achieved if the right players had been bought the first time!?*
    .................
    If we had bought someone else with the money wasted on them......"


    ......yes and IF Bill Gates and not Hicks and Gillet, had bought us, we wouldn't be in this financial hole right now. IF only, we had bought Lionel Messi when he was a nobody, then we would probably have a couple of titles by now. IF only we had beer and nuts, we'd all have one hell of a party. IF only I had listened to that Leprachaun, I would be shooting bands of rainbows and and pots o' gold out my a*se right now.

    IF. IF. IF. IF.
    Indeed.

    What you're doing is SPECULATING on what might have, could have, (may have?) happened IF Benitez had bought someone to your personal discrete particular specifications and likings. What everyone else is doing is pointing out to you the FACTS as to what ACTUALLY did happen when he did what he felt was right - rather than some random character's speculation. YOu may not like that it looks good 'after-the-fact' as you put it, but it remains FACT. You'll always lose when you argue speculation against FACTS. It's why they don't allow it in legal courts - it's pointless.

    And then you keep arguing that Benitez should have gone after a creative player, and only a few sentences later you lambaste him for going after Barry and purchasing Keane (both creative players, as most would presume). Again; Contradict yourself much, or just like attacking Benitez even when it doesn't make sense in the construct of YOUR own logic?

    You basic argument hangs (for dear life) on the whole Strawman-argument of the supposedly awful purchases of Dossena and Degen, - who, frankly speaking, were not that much of a negative impact on the team, nor did they cost nearly enough to warrant the assumption that better players could have been bought in their stead. Especially when you yourself repeatedly can't name said magical better impact players yourself (withing Benitez's budget of course), even after being repeatedly asked to do so.

    Oh, and please explain how we're supposed to dismiss the fact that Benitez made a profit last year ( yes, I know....'after-the-fact'), when the article is titled regarding Benitez's supposed "WASTING" of money? Basic accounting mate - you can't be wasting money, if you're actually making a profit and getting better results - any way you choose to slice it. That's just a fact of life.

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  65. stupid article. you keep saying buy the right player, who knows does he really fit into the team or not before you brought. For example, we all want D.Silva to join, we expect him to be really good for us. How about if he turns out not fit into our team or not get used to england environment? then u will say rafa waste 25mil again? who knows ? even if you play football manager, you may buy players not preform well. no people can get all players right. so whats your point? keep saying things only god can be done.

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  66. As always you ignored the meat of my comment and concentrated on an insignificant part.

    rafa has improved the squad bit by bit every season, this is not opinion it is fact. Even last year which was a "total failure".

    he has done this for a net spend of 87mill. This is peanuts in the crazy world of top flight football and not the record of someone who has wasted loads of money. How much cheaper could he have assembled such a squad for? Again this is not an opinion.

    Houllier wasted money, spending big on dross that he then held onto for dear life and left rafa with a squad with no resale value.

    rafa has done none of these things. Keane is the only player with a big price tag that hasnt worked out and , as others have pointed out even he only cost us a smallish loss. We still went on to challenge so in that sense we didnt really miss him. Yes we might have won the league if he had used this money on someone else but that is again unprovable.

    You are quite prepared to stand by your opinion that we would have won the league with crouch, finnan and risse but wont entertain the thought that we would have won if gerrard and torres had played more games. How do you expect people to take you seriously when you seem to live in such a fantasy land. Hmm who would benefit lfc the most a fit gerrard and torres or finnan and risse?

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  67. kuyt was the 6th highest scorer in the league last year and was 6th highest assist maker. Higher than any other winger in any other team. Without taking pens, free kicks or corners. Delivering all that and working tirelessly in defence.

    How much more does he have to do to convince you that he has more in his locker than only "Strengh, stamina and slefless endurance". The fact that he has those AND and end product can only be a plus.

    Why do you continually drag kuyt into your "lack of creativty" arguements when all the facts/stats prove you wrong again?

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  68. Clarence - Gareth Barry is a creative player? News to me. Is this the quality of creative player Liverpool should be going after? If so, we're in serious trouble.

    Benitez is obsessed with versatility and 'options'. What is more likely: Barry would be played all over the shop (left wing, left mid, centre mid etc) or he'd be used as a creative player?

    And as for Keane - he was the wrong type of plyer for the system LFC play. This was obvious. So why buy him? Why break up the Torres/Gerrard axis? Why spend £20m on Keane and then play him on the wing? I just don't see the logic.

    Speculating on what might have been is the cornerstone of football opinion! In fact, most football opinion is speculation, so what exactly is your point? I'm just a fan with an opinion. This is not the BBC or an official news source where I have to deal only in facts. Deal with it.

    You say Benitez made a profit. I disagree. If you take into account salaries, signing on fees, appearance bonuses and other costs, it probably doesn't amount to much profit at all.

    And even IF a profit was made, what difference does it make? Football clubs exist to win trophies. Liverpool have not won anything for three years. What is more important: making a couple of million and being trophyless or buying the *right* players and winning trophies?

    Seems to me you'd rather buy mediocre players, make a modest, localised profit every year upon selling them and remain trophyless.

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  69. hahaha....funny, Crough, Riise, Finnan are free of wage ??? if you are keep saying salaries, their wages also need to take into account, which obviously you did not !!!!

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  70. The reason there are mistakes in our transfer mix over the years is that Rafa has been willing to try things, search for good players and let the bad ones go when it doesn't work out. I don't actually see that as a valid criticism. No manager has a perfect transfer record, they all make mistakes. What Rafa has shown is that he's flexible, shrewd with money and ruthless with players who don't make the grade. He is always looking to improve and does his best to use the funds he has, despite that fact that we all know he doesn't have final say on transfers.
    Honestly, I don't see the issue. We have improved our squad every single season. How many other teams in the league have done this? We have improved out points tally, our goals output, every aspect of our football. What other team has come even close to our rate of success since Rafa has come on board? The very quality of our play and our points total from last season indicates not that Rafa made 30 million pounds of mistakes but rather that he made some seriously good judgments. Where is the actual problem?
    Unless of course your point is that had we not signed players who didn't fit the team and, instead, signed players who fit the team perfectly, we'd be better off. Yeah. Genius.
    It seems as if what prompted your complaint (and frankly mate, that's all it is, a complaint) is the selling of Dossena. It's as if now that we are letting a failure go, that's a bad thing. Instead you should be congratulating the manager on having the nuts to send the player back to Italy and instead bring in some outstanding quality in Johnson. Unless of course you're looking to have a crack at Rafa for that signing too?

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  72. You sir prove that any fecking idiot can post on the internet these days.

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  73. Brando - I'm not bothered whether people take me seriously. I don't write on this site to gain approval from others; as I keep saying, I'm just a fan with an opinion, and if people don't like it then that's fine.

    I agree with you - if Torres and Gerrard had played more games together last season then the probability is that Liverpool could have benefited. Having said that, we had Torres and Gerrard in the same team for many more games in 2007-08 and we drew *even more games than last season*, so it's by no means a foregone conclusion.

    The £87m net claim is something I will have to check for myself, so I'll get back to you on that one. This doesn't change the fact that millions have wasted on dross over the years by Benitez. You cite Houllier as a comparison, but the only difference between the wto when it comes transfers is Benitez gets rid of his mistakes a little quicker.

    Re Kuyt - yes, he had a good season but he's been at the club for three years, and it's no coincidence that in that time, Liverpool have won zilch. He was excellent in patches last season but the inconsistency that plagued his first two seasons was still evident.

    For a team that wants to consistently challenge for the league, Kuyt is not the answer for the right wing. We need a specialist right midfielder/winger, not a converted striker. Why is this such a problem for Benitez to solve?

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  74. The more I read ur articles Jaimie the more I realize that they're not really your opinions but rather just stuff u write to generate traffic on the site. I know I'm playing into it but one can come to no other conclusion. Here it is u present info on a transfer policy but only tell one side - the purchase side. When ppl point out the flaws in ur thinking u talk about signing on fees, salaries etc. Hilarious really when u think about the lengths u have been going to to try and discredit the manager.

    If u truly want to discredit the transfer policy y not present the net looss/profit on players the manager has bought. You could limit the time frame to whatever u want, include whatever fees u want to try and prove ur point. I doubt u'll go down that road.

    Its a nice tactic to generate traffic on the site though, I give u that.

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  75. Just curious. What did I say in my post that it had to be removed?

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  76. It is easy to criticise with the benefit of hindsight.Robie Keane's signing was widely applauded by all until his return to Spurs.NGOH is worth more than £1.5m;RIERA more than the £8m we paid for him.Lest we forget the likes of PACHECO,INSUA&NEMETH breaking through from the reserves would be worth more than our debt to RBS when Madrid&City come calling.

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  78. Garvin - with respect, the notion that I write stuff just to 'generate traffic' is clearly nonsense. If this is true, what is my motivation? Do you seen advertising on this site? Surely if this was traffic driven I'd be taking advantage of that somehow?

    How many times do I have to say this: I have no obligation to explore all sides of the issue. I do not hold myself out as an impartial news source. This site is opinion based and *obviously* informed by personal bias. much like all opinion.

    I don't want to discredit the transfer policy; my point is that the opportunity was there to buy the right players last season and Benitez blew it.

    Consequently, Liverpool extended their trophyless streak to three seasons. We finished second; big deal, so did Houllier in 2002. Second is nothing, especially when last season arguably represented the best chance in 19 years to actually win the title.

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  79. On the Kut front......maybe Benitez does not see it as a problem. Maybe he likes Kyut out there on the right. Maybe, for the way he wants the team to play, having Kyut on the right gives the balance the team needs. Its not always about attack my friend. U have to be sound in both aspects of the game. the manager made sure we were sound defensively first. Now bit by bit, the attack is expanding.

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  80. Garvin - I hit the wrong delete button by accident and zapped your post by mistake. It has now been reinstated. My apologies for that.

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  81. no doubt u have every right to ur opinion. Its just strange that someone forms an opinion when decidedly taking a limited view of an issue as opposed to looking at something as a whole and then forming an opinion. U look at transfers coming in and form the opinion that the manager wasted $30M. Everyone has a bias but to form an opinion on something after looking at it from one side make sense to you?

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  82. Garvin - you're clearly right; Benitez does not see it as a problem, but Liverpool should have a dedicated right midfielder out there, not a converted striker. Surely a dedicated winger would bring balance to the team too?

    The reason Benitez has Kuyt out there is obvious: it fits with his defensive philosophy. Instead of having someone out there who priorotises attack, creativity and is possibly a little unpredictable, he chooses to persist with Kuyt, whos is the safe option.

    He knows that Kuyt will run 20 miles a game and always tackle back, even when it's not entirely necessary.

    Why can't we have someone on the wing whose only priority is to do damage to the opposition? Why can't we have a McManaman style player out there?

    How much friggin defence do we need? 4 defenders plus one dedicated defensive mid (sometimes two!). These players are supposed to shore up the gaps, aren't they?

    Can't we have a right mid who doesn't have to sprint back into his own box *every time* the other team is on the attack?

    I abhor this approach. I want at least one attacking player in the team who doesn't have to run a marathon every game and is allowed to express themselves creatively.

    Did Ronaldo have to do donkey work for Man U? Does Messi have to do it for Barcelona? Does feckin Arshavin have to run himself into the ground and spend 70 of his time tracking back for Arsenal?! No.

    This is why Liverpool will never prosper under Benitez in the long term. Not only the above, but the probability that *if* Benitez did spend £20m or so on a world class right or left mid, their impact would be muted because they would be forced to play like Kuyt and their natural instincts would be muted.

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  83. Jaime Kanwar said:

    "And as for Keane - he was the wrong type of plyer for the system LFC play. This was obvious. So why buy him? Why break up the Torres/Gerrard axis? Why spend £20m on Keane and then play him on the wing?"

    .....and YOU knew this before Keane was bought? Can you point us to an article you wrote at any point last summer when it was clear we were going after Keane, articulating this fact? Any comment even, that hints you suspected he was a poor fit. Because my guess is that like Benitez and his staff, you DIDN'T know whether or not he would fit into the team set-up until they actually tried him (again, feel free at any time to prove me wrong by providing a link to an article or comment you wrote last year disputing this). It's easy to criticize Benetiez for a decision gone poorly 'after-the-fact' (ah, there's your favourite phrase popping up again), especially when YOU yourself were completely incapable of seeing or pointing out that it was not going to go well - seeing as all you have to do is stand on the sidelines, wait for it to fall apart and then criticize like you knew all along.

    Alternatively you can stand by the sidelines and when things actually turn out great (such as, the team actually making a PROFIT - FACT! - on player purchases and sales, (you know profits don't you? those things that businesses tend to be measured against) and getting better results), you then dismiss the FACTS as having occurred,.......*what was that expression again?......oh yeah*, 'after-the-fact'.


    You disagree with me that Benitez made a profit (based on what, exactly, I don't know, seeing as I'm basing the FACT that he did make a profit on, you know, FACTS - my source: lfchistory.net; where's yours? LINKS please), and then turn immediately around, and ask, that even IF he did make a profit (there's no 'even if'; he DID make a profit), what difference does it make.

    Well, let's see, apart from the actual profit itself (which counts for the only thing in most business ventures, as the major difference), there's also the facts (pointed out for the umpteenth time - for you to conveniently ignore for the umpteenth time) that we scored the most goals in the premiership, won the most points in our history, suffered the least losses, and beat 2 of our 3 biggest rivals home-and-away in the League this year.

    Point out to me how any of those FACTS are not significant, in any Season or campaign; regardless of whether or not we won a trophy (since that seems to be the only thing you have left to hang your flimsy argument on), and you will be well and truly on your way to proving that Benitez actually wasted money last year, when the books show that he made profits and had a vastly improved performance on the field.

    And please, don't let FACTS (or you inability to prove or disprove them whatsoever thereof), or recent recorded history get in the way of your baseless speculations or otherwise perpetually shifting standards on the course to making your 'argument'.

    It's fascinating seeing someone perpetually trying to dance around recorded FACTS to try to make circumstances fit his warped and deluded world-view and support his irrational bias and dislike for Benitez. Sad, but truly fascinating nonetheless.

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  84. Last season we got the highest points tally of any club not to win the league. We had a brilliant season. Not all of the transfers worked out, neither did Ferguson's. Anderson, Hargreaves and Nani cost United nigh on 50m and noone bats an eyelid. Not one of those players have established themselves. Why concentrate on the mistakes rather than the successes. Alonso is worth 3 times what we paid for him, Torres' price is being quoted as 80m this summer, Yossi is worth double. Benitez has made good profits on a number of players. People complain about the amount of youngsters we've bought under Benitez but many have been brought in for free and been sold for helpful sums. Barragan, remember him, for example was sold for 680k. Aurelio bought for free, Arbeloa bought for just over 2m, Sktrel, Agger just over 12 for the pair, Kuyt, Alonso and Riera bought for the price of one Berbatov. But you're not interested in taking a balanced view.

    The simple reality is Benitez has a net spend of only 83 million pounds. Abramovich spent that in his first summer, Mark Hughes will have spent that by the time this year draws to a close. Ferguson can't assemble a strike force without spending that much.

    All in all he's done a very good job. Our squad is miles better, incomparably better than when he first took over. Compare our odds for winning the title and champions league now compared to the Houllier years. Going out of the champions league in the quarter finals is actually disappointing these days.

    Benitez will never be regarded as a great Liverpool manager unless he wins the league, he knows that as well as we do, but there is no one, not one man on earth, including Wenger, Ferguson, Mourinho, Capello, etc, who I'd rather have as manager of our football club. We're lucky to have him.

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  85. Why do we need a specialist winger when kuyt had a more productive season than any other winger/wideman in the league?

    He has even nailed down his national team place playing wide right.

    How is he not the answer when he scores and creates so much compared with other wingers?

    Who would you replace him with that is going to have more of an impact and that isnt going to cost 25mill+ ?
    Your logic is baffling.

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/football/premier_league/liverpool/article6506040.ece

    There`s the link to the times article stating rafas net spend at 83mill.
    So how has millions been wasted?

    It doesnt matter that we have gone through a few right backs to get to johnson. What matters is the team we have for next season and how much he has spent overall to get it ( which at 83mill is a pittance ).

    re the houllier comment - who did he buy that is anywhere near the class of torres, masch, alonso, etc etc. Nobody
    he was much worse than rafa in every aspect of transfers - didnt buy anybody even remotley world class.
    none of his players had any resale value,
    he wouldnt admit he had made a mistake and hung onto players that were obviously not good enough.

    rafa can not be accused of any of that.

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  86. Jamie - you've said that your entitled to your opinion, as is everybody.

    The problem is that you seem to have an opinion, but only one opinion - namely, that Rafa Benitez is tactically too conservative and, basically, not good enough to manage LFC.

    Every post is a remix of the same old song, and it's a wee bit boring. You completely fail to acknowledge the ground that LFC has made up, and had to make up, during Benitez's reign.

    We have become, under Benitez, serious consistent challengers for the Premier League title, for the first time in 8 years. We have also become one of the most feared teams in Europe - NOBODY wants to draw us in the CL; and all this while dealing with the idiot Parry, a couple of American chancers, and a transfer budget dwarfed by that of his main rivals.

    If you want people to take you seriously, and surely you do, then I advise you to take a more balanced view.

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  87. Keane's transfer was not paid in full. In fact there was only a part payment of 10M and even this payment included an appearance clause as always (that might have been a reason for not using Keane so often - to keep down costs).

    Part of the mishap was that the club was facing financial difficulties (to pay the remaining 10M) and Rafa was faced with the option of selling back Keane quickly - recoup part of the 10M and do away with the second payment of 10M and move for Arshavin at 15M.

    Unfortunately Keane was sold on the last days which was too late for LFC to conclude the Arshavin deal - who went to Arsenal at the very end. Remember the delays and special permission for Arsenal to sign him after the deadline?

    Dossena was a dead duck from the start. Dossena is good but not for the way Rafa likes his back four to play - coming out and back quickly.

    Dossena is physically strong for the Premiership as shown but slow at coming back to his original position.

    But we all agree that he gave us good service against the scum!

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  88. Clarence - the fact that Keane would not fit in was obvious. And since you ask, I wrote an article about this issue in June 2008:

    June 2008 - Why Liverpool should not sign David Villa

    It's about David Villa but the principle is the same: spending big bucks on a top class striker and trying to fit them in/reverting to 442 etc was s mistake. I think I may even mention Keane in the article.

    I do not dispute the facts you have presented, but as I stated before, what differrence do they make?

    In 2002, Houllier finished second with the highest Premiership points total the club had achieved at that time. Did it make any difference? No.

    Liverpool could have and should have won the title last season. That they didn't, despite scoring the most goals etc is ridiculous. It is also depressing that despite all the positives from last season, we *still* could not win the league.

    And I maintain that the comparatively miniscule profit made on transfers last season is irrelavent. The alleged 'profit' should be considered in the context of Benitez's entire reign, not just in the context of one season.

    In any event, it's not really profit per se, especially when the club is over £200m in debt. The bottom line is Liverpool have been trophyless for three years; the club's limited resources should be spent wisely; this was not the cas last summer, and it has arguably not been the case on a number of Benitez transfers over the last 5 years.

    I am not dancing around recorded facts at all; the facts you present, whilst admirable, haven't really made an difference to the prosperity or success of Liverpool FC.

    Houllier had take Liverpool as far as he could at the end of the 2002 season; I believe Benitez has taken Liverpool as far as he can.

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  89. Cannot believe this site is made by a liverpool fan

    Disgraceful

    IN RAFA I TRUST

    Huwzie TIA

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  91. @Anon - Get over it. There needs to be criticism and a different perspective, and your 'In Rafa We trust' mantra is the reason. Have you ever heard of concept called 'groupthink'?

    Groupthink

    I urge you to read about it and consider how this applies to football fans. Then you should understand why criticism is necessary, even when it comes from fans.

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  92. Personally I rate Riera, and can say he has improved the left side. Ngog I also like, good prospect.

    Dossena I thought was pants, but did improve towards the end of last season. Better as left midfielder I think.

    Keane, not sure if Benitez even wanted him, and one thing I like is that he's quick to get rid of someone who isnt going to fit in. Also I was getting fed up with Kean moaning when he got took off, poor attitude even if he wasnt given as much a chance as he should have been.

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  93. Wow you deleted my comment even though it wasnt rude / offensive. Good going - rules:

    Disagreement and opposing views are more than welcome here, just argue your point in a civilised manner. If you want post rubbish and get into slanging matches, there are plenty of LFC message boards that would welcome you with open arms.

    Tell me how I broke those rules?

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  95. its interesting that you mention ronaldo not having to track back and defend for manu.
    If you read the comments on any thread disscusing ronaldos sale on the republik of mancunia several things are repeated over and over.

    One of the main reasons manu fans say they are not sad to see him go is that he DIDNT track back, DIDNT work for the team.

    Why does fergie prefer playing Park to Nani on the wing?

    One is a specialist winger who doesnt work defensivly the other is a work horse, not very good going forward but will work hard for the team.

    Park is a poor mans kuyt, nowhere near as good in the attacking 3rd and debatibly not as good defensivly yet is still played ahead of nani.

    Why did fergie waste rooney wide left and play ronaldo , a natural winger up front in rooneys position?

    Because ronaldo WOULDNT track back where rooney would.

    fergie and rafa dont seem to share your view on what makes a good wide man. You seem to want a luxuy player that comes alive when the team is on the attack. They both seem to want players that can produce the goods in the attcking 3rd but still put in a shift defensivly.

    Kuyt fits the bill almost perfectly, certainly better than anything manu have.

    Torres isnt only popular for his goals just as rush wasnt in his day they both defend from the front, working hard for the team, just like kuyt.

    we dont need to spend 20mill+ on a "creative" wide man when we have the best of both worlds in kuyt.

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  96. @Anon - sometimes the automatic comment filter deletes comments by mistake. If your comment didn't contravene the guidlines I would not have deleted it personally. Please repost it if you can. Thanks a lot.

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  98. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  99. Jaimie Kanwar said:

    "And I maintain that the comparatively miniscule profit made on transfers last season is irrelavent. The alleged 'profit' should be considered in the context of Benitez's entire reign, not just in the context of one season."

    And the ludicrous logic-dance continues. So the profit that the club actually DID make last year is irrelevant (and now minuscule to boot, whatever that means, or whatever scale we're using now to measure large enough profit - and be sure to mention to AIG insurance company, ManURE's shirt sponsors who went under, and folded, last year, that Profits are an irrelevant aspect of business - I'm sure they'll no doubt agree with you). Simply because it doesn't fit into your neatly packaged argument that Benitez wasted money (again, one can't waste money if they are actually making a profit), and in addition, we now have the added stringent condition (which, mind you, didn't exist prior to other users pointing out the fact that the club made a profit last year) that this profit must be measures against Benitez entire reign. Right. Because after all, your original article was about Benitez's entire reign and NOT, like it says in the title, LAST YEAR! (30m Refael Benitez has wasted in the LAST YEAR). Right Jaimie. I believe the old football appropriate expression, 'moving the goalposts' (which you yourself set up) to suit your deception, is blindingly apt in this case.

    so let me see if I have the words to to the song right:

    "He didn't make a profit Last year(he wasted money).
    Okay he made a profit, but it's irrelevant (like profit ever is, in an article talking about waste).
    Okay maybe it's not so irrelevant but, then it's not so significant over the course of his entire reign ('Last year' doesn't count anymore)"

    Catchy tune that.
    Don't trip all over yourself though; those logic potholes, self-contradictions, and irrelevant facts can be tricky to dance around.


    Jaimie Kanwar said:

    "In any event, it's not really profit per se, especially when the club is over £200m in debt."

    It's shocking based on the above statement that you apparently seem incapable (in your capacity as a journalist/pundit/whatever) of distinguishing between Liverpool's capacity to generate a profit margin as a footballing and club venture (outside of player dealings, where we've already established that Benitez made a not-so-significant/relevant/important profit, the Club as a whole also did operate in the black for most of the year, generating a profit margin on merchandising, gate takings, other revenue streams (broadcasting, internet, licensing streams)), which is in contradistinction to the ownership situation where the club is already (or was already) in debt thanks the the Loans taken out by the owners to buy the club and the interests payments they have to make to service that loan. Those 2 things are completely distinct insofar as their sources are concerned, even though not entirely unrelated (i.e. all the profit that the club generated, went almost entirely to servicing those interest payments rather than youth development or other ventures) Has it ever occurred to you as strange that Manchester United are the most profitable club (in terms of merchandising, and fan revenue from all over the world) in the world, and yet are about 600 Million in Debt?

    So yes, it really is profit Per Se, because Benitez has nothing to do with the ownership situation, the debt structure, servicing of the loans, or the elimination of aforementioned debt. From an business operating standpoint Liverpool Football club made a profit (PER SE!!) last year from both player dealings and club operations standpoint despite the fact that Kop Holdings Inc.(the holding company established by Gillet and Hicks) is in debt to RBC and Wachovia.

    That anyone would have to explain this to you is flatly embarrassing.

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  100. Jaimie Kanwar said:

    "The bottom line is Liverpool have been trophyless for three years; the club's limited resources should be spent wisely; this was not the cas last summer, and it has arguably not been the case on a number of Benitez transfers over the last 5 years."

    Again, the clubs limited resources were spent wisely, as evidenced by the fact that Benitez made a profit. There's very little Benitez can do to convince players to come to Anfield who are otherwise reluctant to come here (such as due to the ownership situation uncertainty), other than paying above the odds and above market rates. And only Heaven knows how much YOU of all people would eviscerate him if he did in fact pay above market rate for players.

    We're still waiting patiently for your list of alternate impact players that Benitez could have better spent the PROFIT money he made last year on, who could have made the difference. Give us even just one name. Remember that they have to have been willing to come here in the first place, and not just mentioned because they might look good in a Liverpool shirt.

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  101. Clarence - infusing your posts with inane sarcasm doesn't give them any more credibility. I'll respond to your posts later. Cheers.

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  102. could you also answer my points on kuyt as well please.

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  103. Brando - I'll definitely respond to your points about Kuyt.

    Thanks to everyone for superb debate and lots of interesting views all round :-)

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  104. I guess what I still don't understand is where the actual problem is. I know you're still going to want to harp on about how we haven't won trophies, but you need to face reality. Winning trophies while Manchester United are continuing to build their empire is not going to be easy. All we can do as a team is look to get better, improve every single season and push harder. I don't see any reason to doubt that this is happening. The season just past, despite Rafa's supposed wasted money, was our best in 20 years. Perhaps it makes you feel better to blame someone for that ultimately not being good enough but it's nonsensical. Rafa isn't satisfied, he hasn't given up. We've made new signings and the intention is that we'll get better again this season. Throw around as many cliches about the title but as you like but the cold hard truth is that all any team can do is improve and hope for the best. If we had not done that I'd understand, but we have. We're a fantastic team with amazing players who last season put together a blend of stellar defensive tactics with goal-scoring brilliance, leaving us a handful of points short of the title. What reason do you really have to be so convinced that we won't improve again this year?

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  105. .....yeah, and it's not all that difficult to ignore the sarcasm (which is admittedly confined to the first 2 paragraphs of the first post) and address the actual points being made. Particularly if they really do lack credibility as you claim.

    Personally, I would imagine credibility would imply that the posts are least they backed up by FACT all around, and not just mere speculation and a flock of "What ifs" and "If onlys", or just because someone else says tehy or aren't credible.

    But that's just me.

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  106. I am still waiting to hear WHO YOU THINK WE SHOULD SIGN????????? If you think you know everything, who should we sign, and don't just say a creative player!

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  107. This article is utter nonsense. N'gog cost next to nothing, is young & shows great potential. Rafa was quick to act when it was clear Keane wasn't cutting it & canned him. I for one thought he'd be a good signing. Doss hasn't set the world on fire but we have a potentially great player coming through the ranks in Insua so is surplus to requirements. He also improved as the season progressed and his goals against the mancs & real have to be worth the fee alone.

    Degen was on a free, we've paid nothing for him and although he is still drawing a wage, I hope he comes good and proves you wrong as a useful understudy.

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  108. You seem to be forgetting that Rafa has not had complete control of the transfers that you have mentioned. Robbie Keane in particular was clearly a player he did not want as he would not fit into the system Liverpool play. Hence his quick departure.

    You also seem to be forgetting that after making these purchases last year Liverpool ended up with their highest ever PL points.

    In my opinion Liverpool need one more goal scorer to be able to push for the league and to be able to cope with Gerrard or Nando are injured. In a perfect world Villa would join but this clearly won't happen unfortunately.

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  109. That was Rick Parry pulling the purse strings ...

    Rafa didnt have total control of signings at that stage, he did not want Robbie Keane remember ?!?!?!?

    Look at all the new young players he has brought in with limited cash, Players that Barca, Real, Manu, Chelski and Aresenal were fighting for, he is biulding a formidable team for the future, and at present, we have a good core of players.

    Give the man some real cash to spend, and we'll see some more Magic at Liverpool.

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  110. What a smashing blog Jaimie

    I've heard there's a job open which I feel your abilities are perfectly matched for.

    Send your CV to:
    Ministry of Information
    Baghdad

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  111. Such wit!

    Step back into the shadows Oscar Wilde, there's a new player in town.

    In any event, I believe that post has now been filled :-)

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  112. still waiting for a reply on the kuyt comments

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  113. I see my post was deleted, well done Jaimie showing yourself in a great light there!

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  114. Anfield Review - your post was deleted because it contravened the comment guidelines. If you're incapable of stating your argument without reverting to insults then that's your problem. If you're irritated/annoyed by my views GET OVER IT. State your counter argument in the correct manner and I will address your points.

    Brando - I will respond to your points as soon as I can.

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  115. Contravened - that your idelogoies on Liverpool are hypocritical with every article. Please jog on, like most of the comments on here the general consensus is pretty on the money that you are a wind up merchant looking for controversy. As I mentioned in my post, you have LFC history.net advertised on your web site. You blab on about the 30 million wasted so you say.

    If that is insulting to you, unfortunately that is a flaw in your character that comes across and I am not the only you sees this either.

    My question is would you rather Rafa persist with players that are not good enough and Liverpool FC like under Houllier who adopted that policy in the last 2 years of his reign?

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  116. what about all the other dross players hes bought in the last few seasons?
    dirty norweigans.coyb!

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  117. Wow Jaimie you sounded like a professional manager in the game when you advise on what kind of transfers rafa should make and the what mistakes he has done in your past few articles!! Are you actually alex ferguson or jose mourinho in disguise??

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  118. Brando - Ronaldo may not have tracked back that much, but are you seriously suggesting that Ferguson and the majority of United fans would rather he left that stay because of that?!

    Ferguson and the United fans would take Ronaldo back in an instant. They wouldn't turn round and say 'Actually, we don't want you because you don't track back enough'.

    Using Ronaldo proves my point: he was allowed to focus on doing damage to the opposition, and he did just that. Three premiership medals and a CL medal are testament to the fact that if you let creative players flourish, you will be rewarded.

    In my view, Ferguson wasted Rooney on the lkeft because he wanted to give Ronaldo all the freedom he needed, and rightly so - Ronaldo was more important to United than Rooney, and he proved this.

    Did John Barnes have to spend 80% of his time throwing himself into tackles? Did Peter Peardsley? Did Dalglish have to do that? McManaman? Keegan?! No. If ny of those players were playing under Rafa today they would be ruinsed because of the disproportionate attention to defending.

    The aforementioned players were not 'luxury players'; their main goal was to attack. They defended also, but not to the ridiculous extent Benitez demands of his attacking players.

    There is defending from the front, but there is also defending *too much* from the front. As I said, defence is not the problem under Benitez; the ability to break down stubborn defences *is* the problem, as evidenced by 24 league draws in the last 2 seasons.

    I agree with you when it comes to fitting into a Benitez team, Kuyt is perfect. However, he is not the long term answer to the right side of midfield. We should be aiming higher than that, and that means getting a dedicated, creative right-mid with genuine guile and flair.

    Or are you suggesting that Kuyt is the best option Liverpool can ever hope to have on the right hand side?

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  119. Agree with AnfieldReview, clarence, brandao and almost everyone responding to your view.

    First of all, all of us did not say that Rafa has not made no mistakes in transfers. Which manager doesn't? Remember Nunez, Gonzalez, Keane. would you be able to do better if you were him? have you managed any teams and seen whether what kind of players the Shevchenkos, Berbatovs, Daniel Alves are? How is it like working in the contraints of limited budget and yet the need to produce consistent results and to face "fans" like you? It's so tough a job on the ground and it's very easy speaking this is wrong and that should be the way to go. Yes, last season was not benitez's best in a transfer season. But have you considered the gems he brought in? or have you considered the players that he has increased value in?

    liverpool is a big football club. Whether any team member e.g. benitez or gerrard makes any faults, as their fans or fellow members in the club, we should forgive and offer constructive suggestions. By banishing benitez or any players will not do anyone good, including yourself. but apparently, you seem to enjoy being the only person having extreme unbalanced point of views. otherwise you really gotta to explain your point of view and please praise benitez for the things he has done right. Please do not state things of of context. All of us will be much more pleased. YNWA

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  120. "We will be a lot stronger as a TEAM now though".

    ". but i dont want him back "

    "so he can fuck right off "

    "the fact that Rooney was sacrificed because Mister Ronaldo wouldn’t track back"

    "We’re better off without him"

    "Hopefully Rooney can go back to being a centre forward now!"

    "Goodbye and good riddance"

    " likes of Ronaldo and Nani are too fucking lazy to track back"

    they are all random quotes taken from the comments section of articles discussing ronaldo on the republik of mancunia.

    So yes i do beleive there are a large percentage of manu fans that are glad to see the back of him for many of the reason I stated. There are many manu fans who hated rooney being played out of position to accomodate ronaldo. several even critisised fergies tactics in the champs league final.

    Ask your mate Scott the red his opinion on rooney and ronaldo, playing for the team, rooney wasted, etc. I bet it wont differ too much from what Ive written and a bet he wouldnt agree that ronaldo is more important than rooney.

    I find it funny that you brought up ronaldo at all whilst discussing kuyt.
    Is it really fair to compare kuyt to one of the best wingers in the world, to a man that has just been sold for 80mill?

    Kuyt compares more than favourably with most other widemen in the world, especially the prem. As i said he was the most effective wide man in the league last year with the MOST GOALS and ASSISTS , more than any other wideman.

    How would a more specialist wideman do any better for the team or be more effective? Especially if that wide man isnt expected to trackback as kuyt does.

    With the purchase of johnson i fully believe that we have one of the strongest right sides of any team.

    Johnson can overlap safe in the knowledge that kuyt will cover for him against the better sides and be in the box as an extra striker sniffing out chances against the weaker sides.

    This could ultimatly help us to break down the stubborn defences you speak of.

    Johnsons attacking prowess would be curtailed if he didnt have that cover.

    WHo in world football can do a better job?
    Park? no
    Nani? no
    kalou? no
    young? no
    quaresma? no
    Ribbery at 80mill? no

    They are either too expensive or not as good as kuyt. So in that respect kuyt probably is the best man for most teams let alone lfc.

    Has rafa ruined torres?
    hasnt rafa converted gerrard into one of the most effective support strikers in the league?
    Has rafa ruined bennyonions?
    has he ruined reirra?
    hasnt kuyt improved 10 fold?
    didnt crouch break into the england squad under rafa?

    None of these attacking players have been ruined by rafa because they understand the need for balance in a team, for every player to work as hard in attack as defence.

    A concept you seem unable to grasp.

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  121. I think Ngog is now worth at least 2 mil. and is good to have a striker in reserve. Keane was a mistake but not so serius, it would have been better to bring in Silva but he probably costed more. Other players make reserves and can be sold for a solid fee, Degen is unlucky but Voronin proved to be worth some money. They both came for free, so, win some lose some -you never know.
    Ferguson wasted more, Berbatov is not worth 50 mil. of any curancy.

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  122. It is amazing the amount of comment/discussion an article like this can generate. For me Benitez has moved the team on but has completly ignored the ethic that noboby is bigger than the club, he clearly thinks he is. If you think that that populating the club with outsiders is the Anfield/Liverpool way he is right OK he has Sammy Lee and Kenny Dalglish there; but no Stevie Heighway, Dave Shannon, Hughie McAuley no Paco.
    Benitez is in complete control, why because Moores sold to the Standler and Waldorf, if we did not have them to worry about Benitez would be under hugh pressure. He has spent millions and won nowt since winning a CL we should have lost and losing a CL we should have won, remember Bolo Zenden and no Crouch! The FA cup we got was down to SG and was won on penalties.
    OK we finished second last season but that title was ours for the taking until a certain manager's outburst. When is the next time United will have such a poor start, Chelsea be in disaray and Arsenal be so off the pace?
    Benitez is responsible for selling Owen, selling and buying Bellamy, Crouch, Keane and leaving us with Ngog and Voronin as second string to Torres - he is quoted that they are quality this pre-season! One deflected goal from either of them - Owen, who wanted to be at Anfield, will score more than these two added together next season.
    Benitez has not given a chance to Jack Hobbs (1 game), Paul Anderson, Danny Gutherie (or Lucas?) or Adam Hamill. Ayala!!!
    To those that say we should get Silva get really this club has no money, thank you Mr Moores!
    I really hope I am wrong but we will be fortunate to finish fourth this season.

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  123. anon above - you are as bad as jaimie.

    Rafa was not responsible for selling owen. Owen let his contract run down and had to be sold to get even the pittance of 8mill that we got. He would have left for nothing the next season.

    If you dont beleive that rafa has lfc s best interest at heart and hasnt improved our chances of winning the title no end then you are surely blind.

    such negative people.

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  124. I dont think this artical was rubbish I think he has a point.

    Keane, fail and money lost, so not a good buy
    Degen, a waste so far
    N'gog...hardly the back up striker we need right now
    Dossena..tho i like how he looked towards the end of the season, the fact we're gonna sell him for just over half the price we paid for him
    , is ridiculous.

    Rafa made one good signing last year and that was Reira. Simple as , he did bad in the transfer market.

    money recouped, was still money that could have been spent on other players, that better reservee striker we needed all season.

    and I whilst I like benitez sometimes his selling policay is ridiculous. £3.5 mil for arbeloa is rubbish. From a club splashing such cash about. We're gonna let Alonso go for undervalue, when other clubs have tested Reals spending getting higher prices.

    to top it off also, if Glen johnson (who i like as a signing still) cost £17mil with in theory £7 mill being of the money left from peter crouch. Then Rafa effectivly sold crouch for £2mil, either way , bad business was done.

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  125. you cant knock rafa for trying, i mean he doesnt get all transfers wrong. the only way for him to not waste money is to accuratly predict the future. and that is impossible sometimes.

    all managers make mistakes, small ones big ones.but the FUNDAMENTAL factor in a managers credibility is: Is the club heading in the right direction and am i learning from past mistakes.

    answere in rafas cae is YES!

    Jamie, you should do an article on why you dispise rafa and his ways so much. i think we would all like to know..?

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  126. Shut up Jaimie.., u know nothing about the transfer.., pretending knews everything doesn't mean u knew everything.. what a waste article..

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  127. I love Liverpool forever & ever. Till the day i die.
    And I respect Benitez for his buying / selling method.

    But sorry guys, i have to AGREE with Jamie Kanwar here (although my heart tell me not to do so)

    He's right. Benitez bought players that in the wrong position. He bought Masch, but at that time we have Gerrard (god bless our captain) & Alonso.
    He bought Dossena, but at that time we have Aurelio & Riise.

    I know there's no guaranteed in football & no guaranteed if the player we buy gonna fit into the system or not. But at least can we please RECIFY which position that WE NEED THE MOST (direly)

    We need players with FLAIR. Who with creativity & crack down stubborn defence or teams that came to Anfield just to SCRAP 1 points rather that try to beat us?

    Yes you can say Benayoun, Benitez bought him. He's creative, but did Rafa use him? No. Until the latter stage when we don't have other player to use. Torres injured & we have to use Kuyt as a striker. And who can be winger? Reina? Here comes Benayoun...

    I hate Man Utd. And I must admit I hate Fergie as well. But to be fair, did he or didn't he LEVELED our record?? Yes he did. 18 times champion! and we Kop hanging ON DEAR LIFE of our achievement of Champ League Triumph is more over them! We are so lucky (and should kiss Eto'o poster) for bringing Man U down at CL final...if not?? what can we be proud of?

    we are so living in the past. Our record is LEVELED & by god I swear, I hope we be 19 this year.

    So Kanwar is spot on. We waste money on players that give small impact on our team. Benitez bought players not to fit "the hole" but to fit his "rotation" system.

    Fergie knows what position he needs in his team. He needed FLAIR, he bought Ronaldo, he needed left back, he brought in Evra, Center back, Ferdinand, Vidic. All to fit "the hole"...but Rafa?

    I know all of you gonna start arguing about "what happened if players got injured?"...come on guys...there's no guaranteed in football...players ban get injured but it's better than buying "injured prone" players like degen. FREE?? yes he's free...but didn't we pay him wages?

    We have no FLAIR. Arbeloa's gone. We only have Johnson. Carragher can play on the right, yes but can he cross into the 6-yard box. He can tackle in the 6-yard box well, but crosses?

    So Kanwar, I agree with you. But remember lad,this year Rafa is 100% in control the transfer for our beloved LFC, let's hope he buy "direly needed" player rather than players we already have. You are right. some of them not agree with you because they love LFC very much. I am too, but fact is a fact...

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  128. It's 'in fighting' like this that will continually destabilise the club. And surely any fan knows Rafa did not sanction the Keane deal as he thought it was too much - a large part of it thankfully recouped.

    He's led us to 82 and 86 points, we ain't far off. Lets support the team instead of hoping for someone with a magic wand.

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  129. I can't believe some of the negativity here. What do you people want? Look at the transfers long term - not just for a season. Did those transfers last year lead to a bad season?

    People talk about a back up striker???? We were top scorers in the premiership.

    People talk about the league was ours for taking? How arrogant to think Utd or Chelski would automatically falter.

    People say Rafa's rant was the failure of the title - when in fact, he was taking the pressure off the players. Yes, we were ahead at that point but Utd had games in hand.

    So much negativity here. The fact is Utd, Chelski and City have much more money than us, for the funds we have we are punching well above our weight.

    The other point is that individuals left the club as they 'thought they were bigger than the club' Rafa is 100% committed to success at Liverpool, when will some of you realise that... do you want the premiership or are you happy with the FA cup or carling cup? The european cup and the prem are the only trophies that really matter and competition is fierce.

    Get real folks

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  130. wackozacko - you don't know what you are talking about mate. Go call talksport

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  132. @anon 11:19 - I agree completely.

    People seem to forget how hard it is to challenge for the top prizes. How good the opposition is etc.

    We always have the piss taken out of us for saying "next year will be our year". After last season we have more reason to feel confident and optimistic than any other season for years.

    If people cant see that rafa has improved every aspect of the club and given us these reasons to truly believe then I`m not sure what he has to do to convince them.

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  133. To everyone going on about him recouping the money! he didnt recoup it all did he?! dont get me wrong i like rafa but he needs to start thinkin bout how he spends his money! every player (including riera, who only had 8 good games when we 1st got him) has been a let down. book you ideas up!

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  134. he has assembled the whole squad for a net spend of 83mill. So I think he has spent pretty wisely on the whole.

    Yes it has been a slowish process, but we havent had the funds to do what man city are doing now and what chelsea did when they won it ie. buy a whole team of expensive players over 1 or 2 seasons.

    He has made mistakes , like everyone does. But they have never really been massivly costly mistakes and he HAS improved the squad every year.

    Transfering players is not an exact science, there are so many things that can go wrong that are out of the managers control. Why cant people get this concept.

    Villa were flying last year then o niel bought heskey, changed the way they had been playing and everything went tits up. It happens.

    Even if rafas transfers last year were so terrible we still had our best season for years. You could say " yes but if he had bought someone better we could have won" - we could have also done a lot worse, its all hyperthetical, nobody knows for sure.

    What we do know for sure is the squad keeps getting better and better every season.

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  135. Could we name 1 quality winger that we have signed under benitez through his time in charge.Please do not say Reira because why would Benitez look at silva if we consider Reira was such a good signing. if we all watched last season we would have seen that reira didnt play week in week out because of 1 reason, he isnt good enough. And dont let me start on Dirk kuyt...so can anybody fill me in and ask the question why couldnt we have spent 30 million on two decent wingers instead of 5 players that didnt make an impact over the total season of our last campain?

    My argument is and hopefully jamie feels the same way as i try to explain this is, anybody that has been bought to biuld the spine of the current team we have is simply a waste of money.

    I see glen johnson as a possible addition to the so called "spine" of the team. Hopefully that is the case. Please respond if you dont agree on what i have to say :)




    Moses

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  136. @Moses - who are these great wingers that we could get for 15mill each?

    read my previous comments on kuyt in this thread and tell me who would have done a better job?

    I`ll say it again - he was the most effective wide player in the league last year.
    he scored more than any other wideman ,6th highest scorer in the whole prem.
    he was also the 6th highest assist maker in the whole of the prem, ahead of every other wideman.

    HE WAS MORE PRODUCTIVE THAN EVERY OTHER WIDEMAN IN THE LEAGUE.

    Add his boundless energy , professional attitude and defencesive nouse and he has the full package.

    What does he have to do to convince "fans" like you that he is more than capable in that position?

    Just because he isnt some flying fancy dan with step overs galore he is considered no good.

    Look at the facts, look at the end product.

    I dont understand your comment on the spine of the team. How is it a waste of money to try and improve the spine?

    It would take a lot of money to buy better players than we already have in the current spine, however. Money he hasnt really got as proved by our dealings this year - 1 player for 17mill and we didnt have to pay all of that either.

    He doesnt want silva because rierra isnt good enough - reirra actually keeps silva out of the spanish team sometimes. But because silva would give the whole squad more quality and options. he probably is slightly better than reirra but he can also play both wings and as a support striker. what is wrong with adding depth to the squad?

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  137. Was Riise mentioned as a quality player? We got rid and in getting our money back on him we certainly done Roma out of cash. He was never good enough. A few long distance goals but defensively awful, no right foot and a diving header that made it so much harder to go to Moscow.

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  138. jaimie - could you reply to my ronaldo/kuyt comment @9:21 please. Cheers

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  139. Brando - I suspect (in fact, I'm certain) that despite the comments you've posted from Man U fans, the majority of the club's worldwide fansbase would take Ronaldo back in an instant. I'm sure you privately feel the same too, as it's pretty illogical to suggest that fans would reject a player as influential and full of goals as Ronaldo.

    I agree with you that Kuyt had a good season in 2008-09, but I doubt this will continue for next season. He is too inconsistent and often goaes long periods without making a consistent impact. Examples:

    Season 2008-09

    Nov 22nd - Mar 10th 2009: 21 games played. 2 goals and 3 assists.

    Aug 13th - Sep 20th: 11 games played. 1 goal and 2 assists.

    Season 2007-08

    Dec 16th 2008 - Feb 10th 2009: 13 games. No goals/assists

    I want a right-mid.winger who makes a consistent creative impact throughout the season and doesn;t have long , practically barren spells.

    I refuse to accept that Kuyt is the best we can do on the right.

    And I disagree with you about Ashley Young - in my view, he would perfect for Liverpool, mainly because he would bring something we're lacking at the moment: real pace.

    Re ruining attacking players: Torres is the only striker that has been a success under Benitez, and that's because Torres is world class; it has nothing to do with Benitez. What about Morientes? Bellamy? Crouch (was great in spite of Benitez's mismanagement); Keane? Kuyt (as a striker, Benitez converted him).

    Benayoun was also messed about and hardly ever played. When he started playing regularly, he - like any player who actually gets a game - had the chance to show his worth.

    Gerrard and Torres: they are excellent players; Benitez has nothing to do with it.

    We have not had any decent, dedicated creative players under Benitez, and those that we had have failed/under-performed.

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  140. ask your mate scott the red about ronaldo.

    I am not saying they didnt appreciate his contribution but many feel they will have a better balance now because they dont have to make up for ronaldos deficiencys ie. his lack of chasing back/defending, playing rooney out of position etc.

    And fergie does prefer park on the wing to nani because he knows he will work for the team.

    Why are you so sure that kuyt will fail next season? He certainly wasnt as inconsistant last year as you make out.

    he scored more than any other wideman ,6th highest scorer in the WHOLE prem.
    he was also the 6th highest assist maker in the WHOLE of the prem, ahead of every other wideman.

    Just because he wasnt quite so effective in previous seasons doesnt mean he will naturally revert back to that.

    He has now grown into his new role and knows what is required. If anything I would think he would push on from last season as he has more experience playing there and the confidence that last season would have given him. Didnt he set up at least 3 of the goals in our last friendly? I know the opposition wasnt the best but he still had to the do the right things.

    That is the main difference between you and me - I look at the past and see the positives and you look back with a negative eye. Until we actually see how kuyt performs this year neither of us can say for sure who will be correct.

    pace isnt everything - just look at cisse for evidence of that. Kuyt had a much better end product than young last season, scoring and setting up more goals. Its the end product that counts not how you get there.

    Could you list the amount of games that young went without scoring or assisting ,last season, like you have with kuyt?

    I would bet he goes as long without doing either as kuyt does ( kuyt doesnt take free kick etc like young does either, which could add a few more assists/goals).

    Everybody goes through little barren spells throughout the season but kuyt scored as many as rooney, lampard etc OVER THE SEASON. He assissted as many as young but young wasnt even in the top 20 scorers ( he was actually 42nd).

    Bennyonions also scored more and nearly assisted as many as young and played fewer games ( kuyt only played 2 more games than young) all stats from official prem league site.

    How come torres and gerrard have both said they have improved under rafa? To say rafa has nothing to do with it is a little naive to say the least.

    quote from torres - "I've learnt a lot. It's been a real pleasure for me to work with Rafa."

    http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/2009/02/16/fernando-torres-thanks-rafa-benitez-for-making-him-a-better-player-115875-21128721/

    You seem to think that these creative players grow on trees. Morrientes had a great record and failed to adapt, rafa gave him every chance and it is quite baffling how, like keane, he missed seemingly easy chances. he also seemed to get bullied off the ball quite a bit from what I can remember. the prem just didnt suite his style.

    You also generally get what you pay for in the striking departement ( i Know you dont beleive this but whatever) so crouch and bellamy where always going to be a gamble.

    Crouch paid off to a certain degree but didnt want to play second fiddle to torres and gerrard, who are far better ( more expensive) players. Bellamy will probably leave city soon as he again is replaced by more expensive (better) strikers.

    Dont say keane cost 20mill we have already established this was too much and parry/the club overpaid for him.

    If we had more players of torres skill set then you would see more consistant results. Unfortunatly torres and his ilk dont come cheap. we where really lucky to get him as cheap as we did.

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  141. Continued....

    bennyonions took his chance and was rewarded with more playing time and a new contract. He had a little moan but then realised what it means to play for a really big club, got his head down and proved his worth.

    It wasnt a case of having more games and getting better, more like showing he could do it ( taking his chance) which leads to getting more games.

    you almost refuse to acknowledge that we scored more goals than anyone last season. Surely that means that our "creative" players were better than everybody elses "creative" players last season.

    And again until the season begins and we actually see how we fare in this department it is almost pointless in saying we wont do it again. You certainly cant say for CERTAIN we wont do it unless you have a crystal ball.

    I would like to think they will where you will say for certain that we wont. Critical debate is fine, but I dont see the point in just being negative almost for the sake of it.

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  142. @Kanwar

    I couldn't agree more with you lad . You're so spot on.

    I TOTALY DISAGREE that Kuyt is our hope for next coming season as a winger. No! No way! he's no winger.

    @Brando
    i agree with anonymous. stop with all this recouping money bulls**t. you work right? you also get your cheque every week right? you also being paid wages by your company right? Then so is LIVERPOOL PLAYER!

    Stop hiding behind this 83-87million bull crap! Look at Degen, he didn't play, but he still need to be pay. He's an injury prone player. Yes maybe he's good later (not) but he's easily injured. 5 years on back injury, archilles but still Rafa signed him

    Robbie Keane, did he play for us for 1 day? 1 week? or 1months perhaps. no right? he play badly, didn't suit the system, moan everytime player didn't pass him ball, but still we pay him salary. If he's a success, i BETCHA Rafa will never said "THE CLUB SPLASH 20million ON HIM", but he will say "WE NEED PLAYER LIKE HIM IN THE TEAM" & that makes him the messiah!

    Please don't get me wrong. I like Rafa. But lad, fact is fact. you cannot backed the people you like even if they make mistake! you have to voice up. comment. that's how a team can move.

    If you Brando keep saying Rafa doing right with Kuyt, Riera, selling Riise, Rafa didn't bought Keane, you are dillusional. Dillusional of your blindness. And with your mentality, Liverpool will never clinch 19...

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  143. @wackozacko - why is kuyt not the answer?

    What more could another winger have done?

    HE WAS THE MOST EFFECTIVE WIDEMAN IN THE LEAGUE
    LAST YEAR!

    who was better?
    ( apart from the 80mill man who wasnt playing wide anyway)

    You keep saying hes not the answer but dont offer any alternatives either.

    So you dont think that 83mill for the squad he has assembled is good buiseness?

    Could he have bought all these quality players cheaper than that? I seriously doubt it.

    I am not hiding behind this sum just pointing out how little he has actually spent. He certainly hasnt wasted money like houllier did.

    You say he has wasted money because a player ( degen) has been injured and we have been paying his wages all this time. Its all rafas fault.

    Well he had a medical and these experts told rafa that degen was fit and healthy.

    Did they lie?
    Cant they do their job properly?
    Did they tell rafa he was an injury risk and rafa ignored them?

    Of course none of that happened. The experts said he was fine so rafa signed him.
    Is it rafas fault that he has picked up other injuries since then? Of course not, degen has been unlucky.

    These things happen - just ask fergie about hargreaves. How much did they pay for him? As well as his wages which would be far greater than degens.

    Degen was free, yes we have paid his wages , but if we end up selling him all of it will be profit put towards those wages. So rafa wont have wasted anything. Any free player is a risk but that is what you have to do if you havent got a lot of money.

    If he can stay fit he might still prove to be a relative success ( like aurellio). Its a no lose situation really.

    Hasnt fergie just taken a similar risk on injury prone owen?

    Whats your point about keane?
    We had to pay his wages whilst he was with us? is that it?

    Its hardly worth complaining about. Ive talked at length elsewhere about what I think of the keane situation so Im not going to repeat it again. Players dont work out, deal with it.

    I have never said anywhere that I thought rafa didnt want keane or didnt sanction his move. So youre wrong there.

    You say we have to "speak up so the team can move"
    So you dont think the team has improved every year under rafa?
    Or is it just not "moving" fast enough for you?

    You say I shouldnt back rafa when he makes these terrible mistakes.

    The fact is I dont see the things you are crying about as anything to critisise him for. So when people like yourself get all bent out of shape over something I dont agree with then I will back him against you.

    Risse was past his prime , was very one footed, couldnt really cross and started shooting too much. Dont get me wrong he was a very good player but had just showed too many signs that he couldnt really cut it anymore.

    Insua is going to be a much better long term option and rafa sold risse whilst he could still get some money for him ( and to get him of off your precious wage bill)

    I dont really care if you think I am dillusional.
    You say you like rafa yet bash him over next to nothing when he is doing a ,largely ,excellent job, and moving the team forward every year.
    That sounds pretty dillusional to me.

    The only thing your mentality is going to achieve is that rafa will say - fuck this they all think Im shit, why should i bother? im off.

    Then how far away from the 19 will we be?

    Oh and stop calling me lad. cheers.

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  144. @brandon

    ok I will stop calling u lad. Love perhaps? Haha.

    So, as a liverpool supporters I don't have the right to "bent out of shape"?

    So, what is Kuyt? Ambedrix? Nope. Right footie laddie...ooppss...I mean "love"

    The best wideman in the country last season eh? Oh yes, we won the BPL...I forgot, my mistake. And if I didn't kill the Leprechaun I will have pots of gold under my bed & raining rainbow all year long.

    I agree with Jaimie.
    I don't accept the thoughts that Kuyt is the best answer. he's not a winger.
    Oh and you say he's the best wideman in the league? Why this year we don't try REINA as a wideman as well? Or Cavalieri. Or bring back Itandje and ask him to do the job.

    The fact that Rafa blaming on somebody else's when the going gets though, is well known.

    Last year he "fell" into Fergie's trap & lost his coolness.

    Yes, I am a kind of person that "always bent out of shape over something" i agree. Because I'm not the kind of person like you Brandon that "EASILY SATISFIED WITH SOMETHING SOMETHING". Or maybe you're not a man laddie (not lad). Or maybe you're not a true Liverpudlians with proud history that "nearly" go down the drain.

    Remember, if Kuyt play as a wideman, wingman, Iceman, Top Gun, I don't care what man, we will still have no flair. Not at all. A lot of Kop agree when I ask them if Kuyt was THE BEST CHOICE. The answer is...well it's not the million dollars question in "who wants to be a millionaire" contest to answer. Maybe a $100 question. Maybe 10p.

    And we will have 87points or 88points or 89.5 pints this year, and for people like you brandon that "easily satisfied" will say "oh! were improving" but the lad sit next to you in the bar will said "improve or not,2-3 points more that season or not, we already destroy your record & became 19 first"...and don't forget to look at that F**king blok jersey because it will be Red in color, but not our "red army" color.

    So, stop being a "easily satisfied" guy & admit it. Kuyt is not the answer. Statistic doesn't prove anything, silverwear is. You expect me to brag in a bar carrying loads of files showing KUYT is improving, shoot rate, cross rate, MISSKICK rate, MISSTACKLE rate? No laddie. I rather brag that although we didn't play well, Man U / Chleski did double over us, we still the champions! Rather than "Oh! at least we did double over them.Oh at least we won over there" but when that F**cking blok answer, "we have the silverwear. you might win the battle, but we won the WAR"

    "there is no place for second best"
    "nobody will remember the second place"
    remember that...ooppss I forgot Brandon...you're "easily satisfied" kinda guy...my mistake.

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  145. @wackozacko - another well thought out and well written comment there . thanks for that.

    I really liked your Leprechaun/pot of gold comment , that was great.

    I didnt say you didnt have the right to be bent out of shape . I said the things that you are complaing about are mostly irrelevant and not worth worrying your pretty little head over ( or just plain wrong).

    You still didnt say who you want instead of kuyt.
    Just in ,your opinion, kuyt isnt the answer and we need some flair.

    How can you ignore his stats last year? thats like putting your fingers in your ears and going la,la,la.

    So it doesnt matter that kuyt did more for his team than any other widemen because we didnt win the league? Thats just short sighted.

    I dont see what a flair player could produce that kuyt didnt last season. Other than he will look a bit flasher. I take it we would have won the league if we had had this flair player on instead of kuyt? Can I borrow your crystal ball please?

    Why even say play reinna and Cavalieri on the wing? You are saying they could do just as good a job as kuyt?
    Comeon, flower, even coming from you thats just not worth saying.

    who are these flair players you want so badly?
    Have they got realistc price tags or are you playing fantasy football?

    You used a lot of words to just say you dont want manu to win the league next year.

    I dont either but i realise rafa is the best chance we have of winning the league in the very near future. Its not a case of being easily satisfied, its a case of being realistic.

    I certainly wont feel that our history has gone down the drain if we dont win the league next year. You sound like a bit of a glory hunter.

    You say you like rafa but do you want him to be in charge? I cant decide if you do or dont from your comments.

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  146. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  147. at least rafa doesn't waste 30 odd millions on one striker like that old grumpy man from manchester. what a waste. i bet man utd will finish 4th this season after liverpool, chelvsky and arsenal.

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