Gerard Houllier - RIP :-(

2 Dec 2010

JOE COLE has cost LFC £810k per goal/assist so far. Thank God he's fit again, eh?

Joe Cole is fit again after being out for a month with (yet another) injury. The press seems to be spinning it as the return of some kind of saviour (!) but the reality is the opposite is true: Cole has been a flop since arriving at Liverpool, and with more fouls conceded that creative contributions made in his first 15 games, I don't see that changing any time soon.

The gross hyperbole surrounding Cole's signing in August was laughable. Apparently, he was just the kind of player Liverpool needed to appease the likes of Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres; an experienced 'world class' (!) player who would exponentially improve the club's attacking threat in the final third. In fact, so amazing was Cole's signing that Gerrard was moved to compare him to Lionel Messi:

"Messi can do some amazing things, but anything he can do Joe can do as well, if not better. I really fancy Joe for the [player of the year] award this season"

Gerrard is clearly a fantasist; the last time I heard something as far removed from reality as that was when former LFC 'Striker' Sean Dundee claimed he was 'as fast as Michael Owen'.

Anyway, As I argued at the time, Cole was and is a gigantic waste of money, and only came to Liverpool to pad out his retirement fund (IMO). There's no such thing as a free transfer, and Cole will have received a huge signing-on fee (probably in the region of £3-£5m), and a horrifically gargantuan salary package.

And what has Liverpool got in return for such a huge financial outlay?

Practically NOTHING.

Let's look at the facts:

* 13 appearances
* 1026 Minutes on the pitch
* 1 goal scored
* 1 assist
* 3 shots on target
* 16 shots off target
* 12 fouls committed

=

* 1 goal every 1026 minutes (11.4 games)
* 1 assist every 1026 minutes (11.4 games)
* One shot ON TARGET every 342 minutes (3.8 games)

Cole is supposed to be a creative, attacking player, right? It follows then that the best way to judge him is to consider his specific, measurable creative contribution (SMCC) at Liverpool since signing. And as you can see, Cole's SMCC is negligible. Indeed, instead of providing a SMCC for Liverpool, Cole has spent more time giving away fouls.

Cole has been at Anfield for 18 weeks now. For the sake of argument, let's say he is earning £90k a week - that would put his total base earnings at £1.62m in just over 4 months. That equates to:

* £108k per appearance.
* £810k for each goal and assist so far.

Nice work if you can get it!

And this is not even factoring in the signing-on fee, which would make the above figures look even more ridiculous.

The responsibility for Cole's signing lies squarely on the shoulders of Roy Hodgson. Earlier in the season, Hodgson made a point about 'expensive failures' at Liverpool, but rather ironically, he is also culpable for the same mistake with Cole.

I really hope Cole's form picks up over the next few months, but given his less than convinving performance over the last couple of years, and his negligible SMCC so far, you'll forgive me if I'm not more enthusiastic.

Jaimie Kanwar


108 comments:

  1. While we all know that there is no such thing as a free transfer given the greed of todays players and the current market, I think the signing of Cole will pay dividends over his stay at our club.

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  2. I have spent the day reading piss poor negative articles today. FFS try and find something to not fekkin moan about.

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  3. Hi Anteater.  I hope that's true, but why do you think that? What evidence is there from the last few years - or this season - that Cole will turn out ot be a great signing?

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  4. Another quality signing by Roy, but perhaps you would like  to balme Rafa?

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  5. <p><span>Even though I agree with you (can't believe I’m saying this) I find it amusing that you argue that it’s too soon to judge Konchesky and Poulsen but yet you have no problem writing off Cole after 4 months. I also noticed that Roy's name was not mentioned at all in this article after all he is that man that signed Cole and bragged that he had a choice of signing Van der Vaart but once he got Cole he was very happy, wonder if Rafa had done the same mistake if you would have ignored such facts. Also since you love facts so much can you show me where you got the idea that Cole was signed to   "appease the likes of Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres"? Is that just your opinion? Or is that a FACT? if it’s a fact why are you not blasting Roy the same way you would have Rafa if he had given into player power. Waiting for your replay of the deletion of this post.  </span>
    </p>

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  6. Klutch is bang-on Jamie. You're very selective with your facts and sources. Whatever fits your agenda, eh? At least you acknowledged this was Roy's signing, not Rafa's! You always ask readers for evidence. Where's your's when it comes to the "appeasement" of Torres and Gerrard?

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  7. I'd like to think that I am with the majority of fellow Reds on this one. When he signed for us we were pretty pleased because he is a quality player who has a bit of flair, something we really were lacking. He has an eye for an opening pass and will create scoring opportunities for our forwards. His talent will come to the fore when played in a more central position. Evidence, well, I can't really give you any evidence for that. Don't you think that he is a gifted player?

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  8. <span>I find it amusing that you argue that it’s too soon to judge Konchesky and Poulsen but yet you have no problem writing off Cole after 4 months.</span>
    <span></span>

    You seriously need to read the article properly. I stated the following: "<span>I really hope Cole's form picks up over the next few months". That is not 'writing him off'.  </span>Given his previous history, and the obvious greed involved in making his decision to join Liverpool, <span>I am not a fan of Cole. I have given further factual reasons why, but that doesn't mean that I don't want him to do well.  of course I do as that would mean Liverpool is doing well.</span>

    <span>I also noticed that Roy's name was not mentioned at all in this article<span>
    </span></span>

    Funny that, considering I stated the following: "<span>The responsibility for Cole's signing lies squarely on the shoulders of Roy Hodgson. Earlier in the season, Hodgson made a point about 'expensive failures' at Liverpool, but rather ironically, he is also culpable for the same mistake with Cole".  I think that constitutes mentioning Hodgson, don't you?</span>

    <span>Also since you love facts so much can you show me where you got the idea that Cole was signed to   "appease the likes of Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres"? Is that just your opinion?</span>

    Do I really need to explain such a simple point?  Obviously it's my opinion based on what I've heard from fans and ex players.  At no point do I suggest it's a fact, and there's no way you can interpret it that way.  As an example, Phil Thompson said the following:

    <span>
    <p>"I know Roy Hodgson has spoken to Torres and Gerrard and he will be saying to them 'look, if we've got a chance of getting Joe Cole, we've got a chance of getting other players. I think the arrival of Joe Cole will tell them that all is not lost, Liverpool is still a big football club".
    </p><p> 
    </p><p>Ian Rush said something similar too.
    </p><p> 
    </p></span>

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  9. It goes without saying that Rafa is to blame ;)

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  10. I've never really thought he was 'gifted'.  To me, he's symblic of the malaise of the so-called 'Golden generation' of English players: overpaid, undermotivated, and repeated failure in an England shirt.

    In recent years, he's been beset by injury, and has struggled to hold down a first team place at Chelsea.  Arsenal didn't want him due to his wage demands, and now Liverpool are stuck with a player on the downward trajectory of his career.  He's only been at the club for 4 months and he's already been injured for one whole month.

    Combined with his poor creative showing after 15 appearances and it's not looking to good.  He'll have to get back into the pace of things after a month out, and that could take a few games at least.

    Cole is not quick enough or fit enough to play effectively in a central position; If we're going to put anyone there (from our current squad) then we might as well put Gerrard in that role.

    I would love to be proven wrong but for me, Cole will turn out to be an expensive failure.

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  11. Be interesting to see how he performs in a central role now with Gerrard injured, which Hodgson originally said he would fill.

    He is and always has been injury prone tho. 

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  12. Before agreeing with Klutch, perhaps you should read the article properly.  He didn't - according to him, I didn't mention Hodgson, but there is a whole paragraph in the article about him.

    I ask readers for evidence when we're discussion something inherently factual.  My comment about 'appeasing Gerrard and Torres' is nothing of the sort.  I said:

    <span>The gross hyperbole surrounding Cole's signing in August was laughable. Apparently, he was just the kind of player Liverpool needed to appease the likes of Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres</span>

    It's not even MY opinion; I am referring to what I read on LFC websites, and from players (like the Phil Thompson quote I highlighted above).  the fact I said 'apparently' shows that I don't really believe it (and the fact I called it 'gross hyperbole')

    It's a total non-point.

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  13. Before agreeing with Klutch, perhaps you should read the article properly.  He didn't - according to him, I didn't mention Hodgson, but there is a whole paragraph in the article about him.

    I ask readers for evidence when we're discussion something inherently factual.  My comment about 'appeasing Gerrard and Torres' is nothing of the sort.  I said:

    <span>The gross hyperbole surrounding Cole's signing in August was laughable. Apparently, he was just the kind of player Liverpool needed to appease the likes of Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres</span>

    It's not even MY opinion; I am referring to what I read on LFC websites, and from players (like the Phil Thompson quote I highlighted above).  the fact I said 'apparently' shows that I don't really believe it (and the fact I called it 'gross hyperbole')

    It's a total non-point.

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  14. You make some fair points here to be honest. Maybe on my side hope is still winning over critical thinking. Anyway, should he really become an expensive failure I think that we could sell him for more than the 5m we've paid in signing on fees.

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  15. could the same be said for poulsen??
    *only at the club 4 months
    *not good enough to play in our starting xi
    * cost us 5mill or thereabouts in transfer fee

    cole was/is a risk, but no more so than the largely inaffective poulsen thus far. both for me could turn out to be expensive failures, but if i was to back either to succeed, it would be Cole.

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  16. I hope you're right - we could really do with an injection of creative talent now that Gerrard is injured. Who knows - maybe Cole will hit the ground runing now and really step-up.  I really hope so...

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  17. Your Joe cole article today, by your own arguments and reasoning, is completely hypocritical and unfair,  I'm not saying the content is right or wrong, I'm neither agreeing or disagreeing with it, but in other posts and debates and articles you constantly tell people off and say it's completely unfair for people to judge konchesky and  puolsen and hodgson  and call them crap etc. Because they had only been at the club a few months, surely the same MUST  be said about Joe cole?  In this column you call Joe cole a flop, yet have a go at people who have a pop at Roy and poulsen and konchesky, just by sayin at the end (basically) that you hope cole proves you wrong does not mean you have not judged him, you can't have it both ways

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  18. Your Joe cole article today, by your own arguments and reasoning, is completely hypocritical and unfair,  I'm not saying the content is right or wrong, I'm neither agreeing or disagreeing with it, but in other posts and debates and articles you constantly tell people off and say it's completely unfair for people to judge konchesky and  puolsen and hodgson  and call them crap etc. Because they had only been at the club a few months, surely the same MUST  be said about Joe cole?  In this column you call Joe cole a flop, yet have a go at people who have a pop at Roy and poulsen and konchesky, just by sayin at the end (basically) that you hope cole proves you wrong does not mean you have not judged him, you can't have it both ways

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  19. I don't think the same can be said about Poulsen.  He is a defensive midfielder, so we need to look at his specific, measurable impact on the team.  And it is very good:

    * 8 appearances
    * 499 minutes on the pitch.



    * 3 clean sheets in 4 starts.
    * With Poulsen playing, LFC only concede a goal once every 62 minutes.
    * With Poulsen in the side, LFC is unbeaten in 6 out of 8 games.

    What is Poulsen's principal job?  To stop the other team attacking; to stop goals being scored; to prevent Liverpool from losing.

    Considering the facts I have outlined, Poulsen is doing his specific job far better than Cole.

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  20. <p><span>Sorry didn't see the part on Roy but saying that</span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span><span>"I really hope Cole's form picks up over the next few months"</span></span><span></span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span>So What i wish Poulsen's and Koncheksy form picks up in the next few months and they become world stars but that doesn't change the fact im bashing them at this moment the same way your bashing Joe. There isn't a Liverpool fan that wants our signing to fail but when they come into the club and are flops the fans point them out such as Poulsen and Konchesky but people like you get on your high horse and bash such fans but when it’s a player you don't like you clearly don't have an issue writing and article bashing the player.</span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span><span>Do I really need to explain such a simple point? </span></span><span></span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span>Yes you do as there is no proof of that and Phil was just saying that’s what the manger MIGHT have said but there is no proof that Torres even rates Joe as a player. Also many times on this site people have obviously given their opinion on what they have heard but you have bashed them and demanded proof not word of mouth from pundits so why is it different in your case?</span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span>also replaying to anteater you said "</span><span><span>What evidence is there from the last few years - or this season - that Cole will turn out ot be a great signing?"</span></span><span></span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span>Great point and since you love to defend Konchesky and Poulsen so much can you point to the evidence that YOU have from the last few years that either of those to players will turn out to be a good signing??</span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span>cheers mate</span>
    </p>

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  21. Not even 2 shots per game on average?

    The blame indeed lies squarely on the shoulders of Roy, Jaimie.

    But not for signing him or paying him a huge amount of money, but for not using him, or anybody else, in the right way.

    Foe being a ridiculously negative hoof merchant who likes neither creative footballers, nor wingers, and likes to bypass the midfield.

    Take Torres for example. He's virtually a goal a game man -  but under Hodgson that rate has more than halved.

    Under a better manager Cole would have at least 2 goals and 2 assists and would be cracking in 4 shots a game, which is par for the course.

    We need to dispense with Roy, Jaimie. The facts prove it. Even your "facts" prove it. The quicker you realise this, the better.

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  22. Ancellotti knew exactly what he was doing when he didn't fight to keep Cole. His legs like Carra, Poulsen and Konchesky have gone.  They re not bad players as such but all of them should consider seeing out their careers in America where the pace of the game is more suited to them. I always watch their little legs pumping away, yet none of them seem to accelerate. 

    Cole isn't as clever as Cantona or Zidane or even benny.  He finds it difficult to make space for himself and his techinique when shooting is very Crouch, Mcmanaman esque. A PLAYGROUND A TOE POKE.  I can almost gaurantee we have another Kewell, smicer, on our hands.  Why are we never on hand to sign and develop this type of player at an earlier age instead of wasting money on a has been.

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  23. And another silly statement is that cole has conceded more fouls than goals/assists or attacking chances, I'd bet my mortgage that Torres has more fouls to his name than goals/assists, gerrard for that matter too

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  24. If anything the Cole deal is a more worthy risk because there is the possibility of greater reward than with Poulsen.

    As for Cole, he has been very poor this season and with everyone fit, I'd start Maxi over him. I'm already thinking he is an expensive mistake.

    I too, like many, was caught up in the wave of optimism following his signing but the circumstances were different then- back then it seemed like the prospect of new investment in the playing staff was a distant dream.

    Now however, with the exciting prospect of a new bold transfer policy under NESV (though it is all on faith right now) it is hard to see were Cole fits in. In the middle, off the striker? He doesn't score enough (most of his goals for Chelsea were against us!) and it means having to move a more talented player, Gerrard, to accomodate him. On the left? Doesn't really look comfortable and at the end of the day, I think we're all crying out for someone with pace AND trickery to be signed for out there. The right? Same as the left, except even before buying people I'd rather keep Dirk or Maxi there.

    The way I see it, Joe Cole is an aging, injury prone squad player...on £90,000 a week. Only because he is English can he get away with this.

    I'd love to see him turn it around be even then it isn't a long-term buy. I don't blame Hodge since he didn't know what kind of money he'd get from the Americans and going for Cole, a replacement for Benayoun, for nothing makes sense. He is slightly more culpable for Poulsen and Konchesky however...

    Also, I'd have to dispute the 'greed' accusation you make against Cole, Jamie. I don't think he was greedy- Tottenham would have offered him comparable terms but what they couldn't offer him was love. Cole is the type of player who needs constant reassurance and approbation. He moved to Liverpool because it was the biggest club he could move to and walk into the first team. I'm sure the fans genuinely made a difference too.

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  25. It would be really interesting to see the stats if Cole has a stinker of a game but scores a sitter and a penalty tomorrow.

    Because they would look a lot better and I'm sure you wouldn't want to invalidate those stats by saying they were skewed by easy goals in meaningless games in the Europa League, having previously of course used the Europa to make Roy look like a decent manager.

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  26. No, Scott.  You are misrepresenting what I've posted in the past.

    * I have NEVER said criticism of Hodgson is wrong.  In fact, I've argued the opposite, saying that it should be expected.  I have only criticised people who are actively calling for Hodgson to be sacked after 4 months.  

    * re Konchecky and Poulsen: show me an article where I've stated anything about those two.  There isn't one.  I've argued in the comments section that people should give them more time, and I've criticised people for attacking both players in an OTT manner ('Konchesky is the worst player ever to play for Liverpool' - 'Konchescky is to blame for everything' etc).  My criticism of Cole is different; I am not writing him off; I am not being OTT;  I am saying that SO FAR he has been a flop, and that is TRUE.  I have also provided facts to back this up, which people have not done for Poulsen and Konchesky. I also say that I hope he does the business for the rest of the season.

    There is a very big difference here, and if you can't see the nuances of the various arguments then that's not really my problem.

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  27. You're probably right; I just used that to highlight the distinct lack of goals and assists (in comparison)

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  28. I would never use the lame argument of 'meaningless' European games; I leave that for others.  

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  29. Hi Jacques - The greed accusation is just my opinion, and I agree it's open to interpretation.  It could well be that Cole signed purely for footballing reasons.

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  30. Totally agree Jaimie. The way he was hawked around the London clubs first before turning to LFC made me realise something wasn't quite right. It was blatantly obvious his first choice was to stay in London, thats understandable, he's just had a baby, all his family and friends are based there, the offer CL football, it all makes sense. However THFC and Arsenal, both teams with good wage structure systems in place, sensibley baulked at his wage and contract demands. Apparently both teams were prepared to offer around 65K for two years, and a £1 - 2 million signing on fee, which for a 29 year old who had fallen out of favour with his current team, was fair enough.

    It was then that LFC suddenly entered the fray. Lets not kid ourselves.....it wasn't about those crazy european Anfield nights he mentioned, or even the promise of regular football in the 'hole'. The reality is money talks...90k a week over 4 years...that equates to around 10 million after tax. Once you figure in the alleged £4 million signing on fee...thats around £14 million cash over 4 years!!! As you adroitly put it Jaimie.....nice work if you can get it! Call me cynical, i would love to believe his heart felt declarations enthusing his desire to be part of the new Liverpool revival! But those scarily big numbers seem to tell the true story.

    The question I would ask LFC and RH is... why did we feel compelled to pay so far over the odds for a player whose current club were prepared to let him go on a free. There is no denying his talent and versatility. But lets put it into perspective here.....at his age the sums and contract lengths being offered by other clubs was more than fair. The fact he was being paid significantly over market value at Chelsea is not an issue.

    The whole deal smacks of bad business...an ill judged placatory gesture by RH and the board at the time to assure the players and fans that LFC meant business. For RH especially, it seemed like he felt it necessary to bring in a marquee signing....a real statement of intent. Who better than Joe Cole..a player often lauded as being one of the most skillfull english players of his generation.

    However...was it a wise move? The stats provided by Jaimie suggest, at this point of the season, it most certainly wasn't. Admitedly he has been suspended and injured, but it has to be said..we are still waiting. Lets put the deal into perspective by examining the other options that RH and the board had at the time. At this point, I will hold up my hands and admit that some of this content is conjecture, but for the sake of discussion i think its worth pondering. 

    The first name that many LFC fans always mention is Aquilani. Like Cole, he is a highly skillfull attacking midfielder with a proven track record for creating scoring opportunities....and he was already part of team! (and I'd wager being paid a third less than Cole too boot!) Admittedly he came to us injured, but my understanding is that the medical team had assured the management that he had competely recovered. As for the reason he went out on loan...I'm not sure. Yesterday I speculated that Aqualani wasn't happy as he didn't get the assurances he wanted from Roy regarding regular first team football, perhaps because the decison had already been made to bring in JC! This could seem to suggest that Aqualani wasn't even given fair consideration by RH. The irony is, by all accounts he is thriving at Juve, with a great assist rate.

    Another existing option was Benyoun...slightly older and perhaps less skilled than Cole, but considering his track record for inventive play at LFC, and that [...]

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  31. Jamie, first off, i think we can all prettymuch agree that J.Cole has not had the est start to his Liverpool career.  In fact, i think the layer himself admitted as much personally.  Your stats back that up but they are hardly needed as anyone who watched Liverpool this season can see J.Cole has not played to his true potential so far.

    I'm not one to overly crticise you but i was amazed when i saw this article.  I have been reading and largely agreeing) with your numerous artcles/comments regarding Roy Hodgson only being in the jb for 4/5 months and how he deserves time.  I understad you are not saying 'get rid of J.Cole' but the context in which is written in is clearly negative.  I remember you raising these points about J.Cole when he signed and appreciate that this follows the same line, but surely he deserves time to be judged properly.  If Roy hodgson deserves time, then a new signing in my poinion also deserves toplay himself into form.

    Also, this in my opinion will never prove to be a 'bad' signing.  I accept the fact that he is on high wages and almost certainly got a hefty signing on fee, ut it was such an obvious signing at the time and a coup to be honest. I know for a FACT that J.cole was courted extremely hard by both Arsenal and Spurs and that offers were on the table from both (i  have a close msutual friend of his wife - without wishing to name-drop) and he opted for us for footballing reasonsprimarily (noone can deny the money would have been a factor).  but this transfer wis like theMorientes and Keanedeals to me.....All were 'ideal' sognins at the time,but there is no guarantee'swhen signing players.  Fart too many example of proven quality plaers failing to perform at new clubs, but it made so much sense at the time, and if it doesn't work out, then so be it, but iwill never criticise the ctual signing.

    As for his contribion to the team, i am sure we will see a lot more from him in the coming months and seasons.  I know personally that he is deseprate to succeed and just hope he can relax a little and show his undoubted quality in the coming weeks.

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  32. Shouldn't he be given more than 5 months before we make any judgements.

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  33. Totally agree Jaimie. The way he was hawked around the London clubs first before turning to LFC made me realise something wasn't quite right. It was blatantly obvious his first choice was to stay in London, thats understandable, he's just had a baby, all his family and friends are based there, the offer CL football, it all makes sense. However THFC and Arsenal, both teams with good wage structure systems in place, sensibley baulked at his wage and contract demands. Apparently both teams were prepared to offer around 65K for two years, and a £1 - 2 million signing on fee, which for a 29 year old who had fallen out of favour with his current team, was fair enough.  
     
    It was then that LFC suddenly entered the fray. Lets not kid ourselves.....it wasn't about those crazy european Anfield nights he mentioned, or even the promise of regular football in the 'hole'. The reality is money talks...90k a week over 4 years...that equates to around 10 million after tax. Once you figure in the alleged £4 million signing on fee...thats around £14 million cash over 4 years!!! As you adroitly put it Jaimie.....nice work if you can get it! Call me cynical, i would love to believe his heart felt declarations enthusing his desire to be part of the new Liverpool revival! But those scarily big numbers seem to tell the true story.  
     
    The question I would ask LFC and RH is... why did we feel compelled to pay so far over the odds for a player whose current club were prepared to let him go on a free. There is no denying his talent and versatility. But lets put it into perspective here.....at his age the sums and contract lengths being offered by other clubs was more than fair. The fact he was being paid significantly over market value at Chelsea is not an issue.  
     
    The whole deal smacks of bad business...an ill judged placatory gesture by RH and the board at the time to assure the players and fans that LFC meant business. For RH especially, it seemed like he felt it necessary to bring in a marquee signing....a real statement of intent. Who better than Joe Cole..a player often lauded as being one of the most skillfull english players of his generation.  
     
    However...was it a wise move? The stats provided by Jaimie suggest, at this point of the season, it most certainly wasn't. Admitedly he has been suspended and injured, but it has to be said..we are still waiting. Lets put the deal into perspective by examining the other options that RH and the board had at the time. At this point, I will hold up my hands and admit that some of this content is conjecture, but for the sake of discussion i think its worth pondering.   
     
    The first name that many LFC fans always mention is Aquilani. Like Cole, he is a highly skillfull attacking midfielder with a proven track record for creating scoring opportunities....and he was already part of team! (and I'd wager being paid a third less than Cole too boot!) Admittedly he came to us injured, but my understanding is that the medical team had assured the management that he had competely recovered. As for the reason he went out on loan...I'm not sure. Yesterday I speculated that Aqualani wasn't happy as he didn't get the assurances he wanted from Roy regarding regular first team football, perhaps because the decison had already been made to bring in JC! This could seem to suggest that Aqualani wasn't even given fair consideration by RH. The irony is, by all accounts he is thriving at Juve, with a great assist rate.  
     
    Another existing option was Benyoun...slightly older and perhaps less skilled [...]

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  34. Finally some sensible stuff from you.

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  35. There's a difference between valid criticism and absolute judgement.  I am no condemning Cole; I have merely illustrated how since '<span>Cole has been a flop since arriving at Liverpool' (as stated in the article).</span>

    I also said I hope he improves when he comes back.  I haven't judged him overall; just what has happened so far this season.  

    Unlike Hodgson's detractors, I have not called for him to be sold, or totally written him off.

    Just like Hodgson's away record is deserving of criticism, only scoring/creating a goal every 560 minutes is a creative return that is deserving of criticism, is it not?

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  36. why did you delete my replay?? Had wasn't rude?? if you can't replay just ignore it but let me defend myself, ill post it again in case it was done by accident


    <p><span>Sorry didn't see the part on Roy but saying that</span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span><span>"I really hope Cole's form picks up over the next few months"</span></span><span></span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span>So What i wish Poulsen's and Koncheksy form picks up in the next few months and they become world stars but that doesn't change the fact im bashing them at this moment the same way your bashing Joe. There isn't a Liverpool fan that wants our signing to fail but when they come into the club and are flops the fans point them out such as Poulsen and Konchesky but people like you get on your high horse and bash such fans but when it’s a player you don't like you clearly don't have an issue writing and article bashing the player.</span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span><span>Do I really need to explain such a simple point? </span></span><span></span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span>Yes you do as there is no proof of that and Phil was just saying that’s what the manger MIGHT have said but there is no proof that Torres even rates Joe as a player. Also many times on this site people have obviously given their opinion on what they have heard but you have bashed them and demanded proof not word of mouth from pundits so why is it different in your case?</span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span>also replaying to anteater you said "</span><span><span>What evidence is there from the last few years - or this season - that Cole will turn out ot be a great signing?"</span></span><span></span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span>Great point and since you love to defend Konchesky and Poulsen so much can you point to the evidence that YOU have from the last few years that either of those to players will turn out to be a good signing??</span>
    </p><p><span> </span>
    </p><p><span>cheers mate</span>
    </p>

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  37. Fair points jaimie indeed, but for a hell of a lot of people football is emotive, they say the first thing that comes into their head, I've seen you say to people it's unfair to judge after a short space of time, and now I see you doing it, ok maybe it's not the same and you back your opinions up with facts and stats, but to the ordinary reader it seems like your doing what you accuse others off. Of course ppl go ott we're football fans it's what we do. And generally the criticism we dish out is unfair, at the time we're dishing it out, as for Joe cole I'm reserving judgement until gets a run of games, for the most part he's been stop start...I'm also of the opinion every single transfer is a gamble, who would have thought morientes, veron and countless other would have flopped like they did, but I'm an eternal optimist where Liverpool are concerned I'm fed up with negativity so I hope cole comes good, and it's not as big a gamble being a free(fees and wages aside) as say buying a 28 year old *insert nationality* player for 8-9 mil, on a side not jaimie can you find out a breakdown of the 9million we spent on agents fees, we've hardly been prolific in the transfer Market, so why has this been spent?

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  38. Agreed..the issue of where to play JC is a big problem...for me if stevie g and merilies are fit central mid is not an option for him, that leaves the left wing, but personally i feel he lacks pace to be truely effective playing there. 

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  39. I see where you're coming from, Scott.  I hope Cole comes good too as it means Liverpool will probably be benefiting.

    Re the 9 million in agents fees: It should be remembered that the 9m is for the period <span>1<sup>st</sup> October 2009 to 30<sup>th</sup>September 2010</span>

    http://www.liverpoolfc.tv/corporate/agent-fees-disclosure

    The figure will almost certainly include fees from summer 2009 transfers (Aquilani, Johnson etc) - Agent fees are not paid immediately in most cases; in many cases, they're paid months later, and often in installments.

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  40. We are a third of the way throug the season and we have spent a million pound already on the services of Roy Hodgson, a man who himself described his past managerial record as being similar to Alex Fergusons. I feel we we do need to reflect on his Specific Manegerial Contributions SMC:

    10th position-Mid table
    15 games played
    1 away win
    40% loss rate and a 33%win rate
    -2 goal difference

    Hodgson is supposed to be a good manager right? Well its seems the best way to judge that is on his Specific Managerial Contributions since arriving. Indeed, Instead of providing enhanced SMC at liverpool he has spent more time creating a mid table team.


    The responisibiliy for the signing of Hodgson rest with the old regime, Hodgson himself made a point that liverpool have made expensive failiures at liverpool so really should walk out the door first and take poulsen and konchesky with him!!!

    If we do keep hold of Roy Hodgson I only hope his SMC start to be alot better than what they are, and given the fact he has never won anything at the highest level compiled with the fact we are doing poor, leaves me to belive it wont.

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  41. I was convinced that it would be foolish to go after him and was totally shocked to see that we had picked him up.  I wanted quality, widemen more than anything, and didn't want any more "flexible" players that Liverpool loves nowadays (main reason I didn't want VDV, Keane or Barry either as I knew they'd inevitably be deployed on our left wing also) being used in a secondary position. 

    Nor did I see the need for an expensive (wage wise) player that replicated the qualities that we already had in our squad - Gerrard had proven himself as a quality attacking midfielder, I was excited about Aquilani for the new season, and Pacheco and Shelvey were also going to need games through the middle, so I just didn't see the sense in targetting Joe Cole, when we still had such holes elsewhere in the squad. 

    Now that we're stuck with him though, here's hoping that we switch to a 3 man central midfield and he finally fulfills the promise that the pundits keep going on about

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  42. Hi, I'm a Chelsea supporter, and a huge Cole supporter. I was gutted at the way we treated him and that he eventually left, but I can't blame him. Let me assure you that Cole has it all. EXCEPT ubiquitous confidence. If you give him a run in the side, he will come up trumps. He started our best game (CL 2nd leg v Barca at the Bridge) we put it on one of the four DVDs in our centenary packet. This was cos of injuries and Jose had to play him, then he was good so the injured couldn't return to the side because of his form. Yes this was 5 years ago, but it applied right until he left us. Lampard and Malouda as well as Drogba were crap for us when they first signed. Look at them now. Imagine if we wrote them off after 4 months. He hasn't even played for the 4 months. He's had a devastaingly unlucky start with you (sent off, banned from dirving, missed penalty, wife carjacked, hamstring). Just let him play in the middle (he should NOT be on the wing anymore, even though he made it his own for England before just cos he had to, to play). He saved Capello's bacon in qualifying for the World Cup before getting injured and was poorly treated on return, not starting a single match after being our only good consistent performer at the last one. It's a joke. Right now we are starving for a player like Joe, but the stupid suits at the Bridge opted for Yossi who's out for the season. Mental. Have faith...loads of time to shine.

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  43. Ahh I see (still, it's the price of a backup striker!)

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  44. With regards to Joe Cole, form is temporary, class is permanent. with regards to konchesky, 'poor is permanent, class will never come.

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  45. No sir, you condemned him from the very beginning when you said that he "was and is a gigantic waste of money, and only came to Liverpool to pad out his retirement fund" Why only pick on Joe Cole if your're looking at specific measurable creative contribution? Is it because you feel you have to prove your point that he is a "gigantic waste of money".

    Lets look at the specific measurable creative contribution of another player who have only been at the club for 5 months, namely Raul Meireles.

    12 appearances
    912 minutes on the pitch
    0 goals
    2 assists
    7 shots on target
    17 off target
    10 fouls committed

    And he cost £11.5m.

    Don't get me wrong I think Meireles has done well so far and I've been impressed with him especially when he plays in the centre, but to look at just his stats it isn't that impressive and doesn't really tell you the full story. 

    Joe Cole hasn't played that well so far, but you have to remember that he was suspended after the Arsenal game for 3 matches and was injured which means that he hasn't really been allowed to build up much momentum. He was playing in the team that had the worst start to a season in over 50 years, with a run of six games without a win Manchester Utd game to Napoli game, where the whole team played pretty abysmally. So to pick on Joe Cole is a buit unfair in my opinion.

    I think he'll come good.

    And also Joe Cole has only made 13 appearances not 15.

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  46. The only question that remains is "do Steven Gerrard and his agent hold too much sway at LFC?"

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  47. Jaimie,

    So does that mean that its not okay to have a go at the manager who has been here 5 months but it is okay to character assasinate a player who has been here the same amount of time.?

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  48. All excellent points...however, the benayoun deal was done when rafa was still in charge both RH and the player stated this, I will always question why Roy let aquilani go then go and spend 11 million on meireles and 5 mil on poulsen, we should have kept aqua and used the money on meireles buying a striker instead, as for VDV it's irrelevant whether Roy didn't buy him cos we got cole, there is always room in the squad for players with that kind of quality, I do tend to think that cole came for the reasons he states, even 'arry says he thought he had a deal with him until we stepped in, of course money is a factor, but it's not the be all and end all for every player

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  49. All excellent points...however, the benayoun deal was done when rafa was still in charge both RH and the player stated this, I will always question why Roy let aquilani go then go and spend 11 million on meireles and 5 mil on poulsen, we should have kept aqua and used the money on meireles buying a striker instead, as for VDV it's irrelevant whether Roy didn't buy him cos we got cole, there is always room in the squad for players with that kind of quality, I do tend to think that cole came for the reasons he states, even 'arry says he thought he had a deal with him until we stepped in, of course money is a factor, but it's not the be all and end all for every player

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  50. All excellent points...however, the benayoun deal was done when rafa was still in charge both RH and the player stated this, I will always question why Roy let aquilani go then go and spend 11 million on meireles and 5 mil on poulsen, we should have kept aqua and used the money on meireles buying a striker instead, as for VDV it's irrelevant whether Roy didn't buy him cos we got cole, there is always room in the squad for players with that kind of quality, I do tend to think that cole came for the reasons he states, even 'arry says he thought he had a deal with him until we stepped in, of course money is a factor, but it's not the be all and end all for every player

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  51. You're right, Gary - it is 13 appearances; Thanks,  It doesn't make any difference to the figures though, which are based on SMCC per minute.

    <span>you condemned him from the very beginning when you said that he "was and is a gigantic waste of money, and only came to Liverpool to pad out his retirement fund</span>

    No, I didn't.  I said Cole 'was and is' a waste of money.  I did not say 'Cole was, is and always will be' a waste of money.  At this point, he is a waste of money.  

    I chose Cole because he came suc a huge reputation for creativity, and that has not materialised (to Liverpool's detriment).

    Meirelles is totally irrelevant to this discussion.  Does he play as an attacking midfielder for Liverpool?  Did he come with a huge reputation for creativity?  No.  He should be judged on different terms specific to what his role actually is (just like Poulsen, who I've posted about above).

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  52. That is perfectly fair.  As I've argued all along, criticism of Hodgson is warranted and should be expected, as long as it's done in the right way.  Calling for him to be sacked after 3 and 4 months is not the right way.  

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  53. Scott

    Thanks for your comments and pointing out the timing of the Benayoun deal which I didn't realise. I'd like to think that the money wasn't the main issue with Cole, although I'm yet to be convinced. That said, its just my opinion...only JC and his agent know the truth. The reality is despite any reservations some fans may have, we all want him to start performing and helping the LFC cause.

    Totally agree with you bout Aqua...do you know what the deal is if Juve decide they want to sign him?  I'm hearing reports that he's performing really well and is very happy there....it does seem unlikely that he will want to come back to Anfield.

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  54. Meireles is actually very relevant here. He has played a majority of games on the right hand side which is an attacking position, or behind the striker. He has only played in his preferred position a few times. This is more to do with Roy than Meireles to be fair to him, but he is still expected to create or score in those positions, and he didn't - 2 assists shows that. 

    He also has the role of the more attacking of the two central midfielders. It is Pouslen or Lucas' role to be the scrappy defensive CM and Meireles to the more creative, passing CM.

    With regards to Cole, you are just being pedantic with the whole was/is/will be. What does he have to do to not become a gigantic waste of money? Score 10 goals or 20, with 10 or 15 assists?? The fact is that you pretty much wrote him off since he got here by saying he is a gigantic waste of money. Anyone else more reasonable would give him a chance before saying a such a thing. You did the same with Aquilani and Johnson. I don't have time to find the quotes now but I will later.

    Its hypocritical of you to write off certain players but then defend the likes of Poulsen and Konchesky saying they need time. Some of what has been said about them has been exaggerated but all people are saying is that they haven't been very good in the so far. And you are saying Joe Cole hasn't so far. Why is it any different?

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  55. Meireles is actually very relevant here. He has played a majority of games on the right hand side which is an attacking position, or behind the striker. He has only played in his preferred position a few times. This is more to do with Roy than Meireles to be fair to him, but he is still expected to create or score in those positions, and he didn't - 2 assists shows that. 

    He also has the role of the more attacking of the two central midfielders. It is Pouslen or Lucas' role to be the scrappy defensive CM and Meireles to the more creative, passing CM.

    With regards to Cole, you are just being pedantic with the whole was/is/will be. What does he have to do to not become a gigantic waste of money? Score 10 goals or 20, with 10 or 15 assists?? The fact is that you pretty much wrote him off since he got here by saying he is a gigantic waste of money. Anyone else more reasonable would give him a chance before saying a such a thing. You did the same with Aquilani and Johnson. I don't have time to find the quotes now but I will later.

    Its hypocritical of you to write off certain players but then defend the likes of Poulsen and Konchesky saying they need time. Some of what has been said about them has been exaggerated but all people are saying is that they haven't been very good in the so far. And you are saying Joe Cole hasn't so far. Why is it any different?

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  56. Hodgson should not take the blame for this alone,Purslow is also to blame for picking up Cole

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  57. Hey, all you people who are saying Cole is going to be a great success, and I hope he is too, what are Ryan Babel's stats for this season, in less games? One goal, at least. What was his record over the last three years? Cole is new to the team but not new to the EPL. And he is not a youngster, we should be expecting more from him.

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  58. I read in the time of the deal that the loan fee was round about £2m for a season long deal with a fixed price of £13.5 if juve want to make it permanent, but that's only what I read, that doesn't seem too far fetched for me, I think it's obvious Roy just didn't fancy the player, I can't see him coming back either
    Sent from my iPhone
    On 1 Dec 2010, at 17:43, "Echo" <js-kit-m2c-hhfedmlhe6tgp67dpct82akslvlruih9jvnipvibmbjip1k0v2u0> wrote:
    </js-kit-m2c-hhfedmlhe6tgp67dpct82akslvlruih9jvnipvibmbjip1k0v2u0>

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  59. <span>OK Jamie, you think Gerard is a cheat - a <span>fantasist far removed from reality; </span>Reina is negative, presumptuous, destabilising, devisive and disloyal, and now you've got your claws into Cole.</span>
    <span> </span>
    <span>Who's next through your LFC meat grinder?</span>

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  60. "Poulsen has been very effective in this regard:  
     
    * 8 appearances  
    * 499 minutes on the pitch.  
     
    * 3 clean sheets in 4 starts.  "

    Sounds good, but ....

    When he's "appeared", how many clean sheets has he kept, out of interest - the wording of stats is very important. It does not matter if he appeared or disappeared, it matters what happens when he was on the pitch you see.

    Similarly with Cole (and other players) and his and others effects can only be measured when they are actually on the pitch.

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  61. I must say, even though the statistics you wrote down are far from good, Cole is not the player I'm bothered with... Look at Konchesky who was bought this year as well. On the pitch, it doesn't matter for how much money he was brought in, the fact is that he is a shit player! Even if he had paid Liverpool to take him in, he is bad for the team, so I find his joining to the club a far bigger mistake than Cole's. And for the record, Konchesky's singing is thought to be £3-4m- so not that much cheaper, but certainly much worse of  a player.  What I'm trying to say is, on the pitch, it doesn't matter how much the player cost, it's how he preforms. And I think there are far worse preformances on the pitch than Cole's that we should be focusing on. And I know it's not Roy's singing, but N'Gog- seriously?!?! Even if he is being paid £1 a week- it is money that goes to waste!

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  62. well, comparing him with Messi is just laughable but maybe Gerrard was thinking of Messi in world vup which was pretty poor.
    on serious point I think Cole would be a more effective player if he played in the middle behind Torress and now with Gerrard being injured it s time to try him there.

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  63. I'm denying the pay packet didn't help though ;)

    I think though, as pointed out by many, even idiot Redknapp (Senior), the esay option would have been for him to stay in London. I've got to give some respect to Joe for that but I just think it is wrong man for the wrong team right now.

    Now to wait for someone to say 'wrong man, wrong team? WOY!' :-P

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  64. Jamie,

    "I am not condemning Cole"

    Hmmm:

    'Cole has been a flop '
    “more fouls conceded that creative contributions”
    “I don't see that changing any time soon”
    “Cole was and is a gigantic waste of money”
    he “only came to Liverpool to pad out his retirement fund (IMO)”
    “Cole's SMCC is negligible”
    “Cole has spent more time giving away fouls”


    Sounds like an awful lot of condemnation there fella.

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  65. I agree with Jaimie - unbelievable, words uttered in shame but I do.  Cole has been a flop, whom I hope improves.  Attacking players are a risk, but one of the main reasons he is a flop is that he is playing in the left wing, he is more of a second striker - like Gerrard. 

    I feel Konchesky (who has admitted to being not up to snuff - good on him for being honest, but still average), Poulsen (who Hodgson said will prove his worth on Nov 11th) and Cole are a picture of a manager who knows what he knows and not where he wants to go.  These 3 are a few rungs short of Insua (young and talented - the kind of player NESV are hoping to bring in, Aqualini (who is proving his value at Juve), and Monster Masch.  Even excluding the Mascherano, who I know wanted away, we're still a few rungs short.  This is the reason Comoli was brought in, to make up the transfer/scouting deficiencies of Hodgson.  Hopefully soon, they will bring in someone who will make up his footballing deficiencies.  But for this statement, i will be labelled a traitor and watch my typing be deleted. 

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  66. `Jamie Kanwar - Forever the drama queen.

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  67. If I remember rightly, the reports suggested that Ngog was looking for around 40k a week had Liverpool decided to sell him in the summer, so I reckon he's gotta be on around 25k now! Isnt that like what the average person in the UK makes in a year!

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  68. When RH came to LFC he had an agenda,he knew how popular Rafa was so tried to undermine him.Firstly out goes a fit and young Aquillani who is an exceptionally creative and technically gifted player,in comes an ageing Cole who has hardly strung 2  90 minute games in a row in his whole career.Then RH tries agin to undermine Raf, he says he tried to sign Sammy Hyppia but said his club wouldnt let him come because that is how important he is to his club.Then RH again undermines Rafa by signing Aurellio on a permanent deal(even though Rafa has been proven right again by offering him a pay as you play deal because hes injury prone).Then RH says we need more English players so out goes a young and improving Insua and in comes Konchesky,the thing is though Insua was classed as an English player because he had been with LFC from being young.My point being RH signed Cole to replace Aquillani because Aquillani had negative press and he thought he could get one over on Rafa and try to prove Rafa wrong.NO CHANCE ROY YOU WILL NEVER PROVE RAFA WRONG.

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  69. "JOE COLE has cost LFC £810k per goal/assist so far."

    You're forgetting to take into account the revenue (shirt sales, etc) he has generated and thus your statement is probabily not true.

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  70. The right way is to include the full facts over the full time, and those facts show that Roy and his unchanging system have never been successful. Whereas Cole has won 3 league titles and isn't senile.

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  71. Hey Jaimie, another solid article that does highlight some of the problems that are dogging our club at this point in time. I heard that Joe Cole got a £5million signing on fee, although the majority of it went to his agent. Joe Cole is a player that hopefully we will no longer be going after with the NESV policy of youth development.

    I do not think that he is going to turn it around because the last three years of his career have not shown anything to suggest that he will; God I do hope that he will prove me wrong but he is at this point in time a waste of money in wages, imagine getting 1.62 million for one goal and one assist, while being injured for a solid MONTH!
    However, all of the people who are saying that this signing a long with Konchesky and Poulsen are a sign of what Roy will do if given money in January are clearly ignoring the point of Meireles and what Roy done when he had money.

    I firmly believe that we will see some great investment with Commoli (sp?) and Roy working in tandem to find players.

    A few questions for you Jaimie, where do you get some of your statistics from? I've wanted to write some articles for a blog on Liverpool but am struggling with getting irrefutable facts. Also, what do you believe is our best formation and what type of players do you see us looking into in January?

    Thanks!

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  72. Cheers for the info Scott. Considering we paid around £17 million, we might not even break even on him.

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  73. I find it a little unfair that one is seemingly not allowed to judge a new manager in november, but can do so with a player?  I take your point that he's injury prone and that does bug me and he's been a little underwhelming also, but the criticism doesn't seem necessary, he seems fully commited to the cause, no evidence to the contrary,and theres no evidence to suggest he's just looking for a final payday.. just seems a little harsh, especially only 5 months into his liverpool career!

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  74. Hi jaimie

    Roy Hodgson has been poor so far. no doubt. I don't need to go into the details,
    In 4.8 weeks you will be able to joint he rest of us in calling for his resignation, see you then, btw the reason joe cole deserves more itme to shine than your average player (or average manager) is that hjes played at the top and proven his worht before and we all know what hes capable of, jsut liek we know what roy, konchesky,poulsen are capable of too

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  75. Joe Cole at his best can be a devastating player. But surely the position he wants is the same as the one that Gerrard will play in when fit. My fear with Cole is that his devastating displays will be all too rare, which sums up his career really. But, then, he is more savvy with the press, like Hodgson, doesn't use twitter and has friends in the squad, so he will get more time. Shirt sales do not prove a player's worth if you are trying to make the champions league and you miss out. This idea that he needs more time to shine than your average player, if he is not your average player, why does he need more time?

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  76. Hey Marty

    I think you make a good point about the NESV approach to player acquisitions. Under the current policy there is no way we would have signed Cole. As you rightly suggested, he is a player whose recent form has been dipping, especially in comparison to previous career highs. Furthermore his age means he would have minimal resale value. However, as you say, lets hope he can prove himself on the pitch. To be fair hes not had many matches so the game tomorrow could be a great opportunity for him to build up some confidence (which is an issue that I believe has affected him) to fight for a place in the PL eleven. Now Roy's just got to work out where to play him!

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  77. Good point Gab, Gerrard and Merieles both want to (and should) play in attacking midfield roles. And if RH decides to play another striker to partner Torres (eg Ngog, Carroll/Bent/or whoever we end up buying in jan) then that leaves even less opportunity for Cole in the advanced midfield position that he favours. It would seem then, that the only available place would be out on the left, where he is least happy and more importantly least effective.

    Incidently, whilst browsing the LFC official website, i happened on a link that suggested LFC were been strongly linked with Keisuke Honda of CSKA, to the point of suggesting that preliminary that negogiations may have already begun. Now signing Honda would surely put the cat amongst the pigeons as far as JC's LFC career is concerned!

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  78. Good point Gab, Gerrard and Merieles both want to (and should) play in attacking midfield roles. And if RH decides to play another striker to partner Torres (eg Ngog, Carroll/Bent/or whoever we end up buying in jan) then that leaves even less opportunity for Cole in the advanced midfield position that he favours. It would seem then, that the only available place would be out on the left, where he is least happy and more importantly least effective.  
     
    Incidently, whilst browsing the LFC official website, i happened on a link that suggested LFC were been strongly linked with Keisuke Honda of CSKA, to the point of suggesting that preliminary negogiations may have already begun. Now signing Honda would surely put the cat amongst the pigeons as far as JC's LFC career is concerned!

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  79. Good point Gab, RH may well fancy that role for Stevie G with Meireles central and Lucas/Poulsen playing the DM role. And if the manager decides to play another striker to partner Torres (eg Ngog, Carroll/Bent/or whoever we end up buying in Jan) then that leaves even less opportunity for Cole in the attacking midfield position that he favours. It would seem then, that the only available place would be out on the left, where he is least happy and more importantly least effective.    
       
    Incidently, whilst browsing the LFC official website, i happened on a link that suggested LFC were been strongly linked with Keisuke Honda of CSKA, to the point of suggesting that preliminary negogiations may have already begun. Now signing Honda would surely put the cat amongst the pigeons as far as JC's LFC career is concerned!

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  80. Gab i said that he deserves more time and not that he needs more time. Remember when Joe Cole signed on we were in a huge crisis, new ownership,  court cases and what not. Not to mention his unfortunate red card which must have had a negative effect on his settling in. Funny that these excuses are valiud for some nad not others

    Jaimie clearly has his favourites and when defending those favourites will use stats that when presented on their own and in no context what so ever mean very little, this is an example of using the stats to vilify someone you clearly did not want joining the club from the start

    Joe Cole is class and will prove that

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  81. Agreed,  I thought Meireles and Lucas was the best thing to come out of the Tottenham game and Gerrard surely has to play off Torres again. Meireles was performing the Alonso role pretty well. I would love Honda to come to Anfield. He looks like the real deal to me and is the kind of player who would be coming at the right price. And he is versatile and can play on the flanks. I think that he has more to offer than Joe Cole. I'll always be grateful to Cole for that goal he scored at Old Trafford last season that stopped them winning the title. But, looking forward, I feel that if we are to get to the top again we need to be clever and find 10m players who could end up being worth 20m, not spending 20m on players like Bent or Carroll. Even Mascherano was bought at the price of an established star. We need more signings like Alonso, even Meireles. Players who can do a good job and make their name at Anfield. Aquilani was too expensive. I'd sooner see the team built up like this than see us throwing silly money at, so called, stars. We have to be extra careful with the striker we buy, a player who can do a better job than our alternatives to Torres but who knows he might not play every game. It's a tricky one. We don't want to sign a Darren Bent, who then will be like Crouch and want to play all the time. If we get someone like that, the tactics will need an overhaul.

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  82. Gab Definitely see your point regarding the striker we buy in Jan...someone like Bent or Carroll would be at this point not represent good value for money. and, as you say a premium striker like that would, quite rightly , be expecting regular games. If RH decides to go for SG, JC or even Honda (if we're able to get him) playing off torres for most matches, that would leave £20 million plus super striker warming the bench. Thats why I have to laugh when I hear some fans sayingwe should be going for someone like LLorente. I've often felt that a far more economical solution could be to give Ryan Babel a go...he has pace, a decent strike and IMO would hold up the ball better than Ngog. I know its controversial...Babel has obviously not endeared himself to RH. After all the manager suggested that Babel might well be used as a back up striker at the start of the season, an idea which has never materialised. However the fact that Babel also plays on the wings (and is used to being a substitute!) makes him worth considering.       <span>.</span>

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  83. Hey sumon, thanks for the reply, I agree that he might not have had a proper run in the team in the position that he has said he favours, and tonight I hope that he manages to show us exactly what he could bring to the team.

    I do however feel that if he was to play in that position all season (fitness permitting) we would then be forced into a difficult sitiuation in that Gerrard would be moved back and either Lucas or Miereles would need to be dropped to the bench, and as far as the current form of both players is going I would be loathe to see that happen.

    Perhaps it is time for a sort of modified 433 formation with Lucas as an anchor with Gerrard and Miereles in front of him alternating in the attacking with Cole behind Torres and Kuyt/N'Gog, sort of like this:

                                           Lucas
                        Gerrard                       Miereles

                                           Cole

                             Torres               Kuyt/N'Gog

    That way it gives us the chance to get our best players on the field at the same time while not playing a 4231 formation with an unconfident Torres being by himself? What you think? Width is a concern but we have no real wingers at the minute and until January with our next few games being "winnable" maybe we should give it a go?

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  84. Hey sumon, thanks for the reply, I agree that he might not have had a proper run in the team in the position that he has said he favours, and tonight I hope that he manages to show us exactly what he could bring to the team.

    I do however feel that if he was to play in that position all season (fitness permitting) we would then be forced into a difficult sitiuation in that Gerrard would be moved back and either Lucas or Miereles would need to be dropped to the bench, and as far as the current form of both players is going I would be loathe to see that happen.

    Perhaps it is time for a sort of modified 433 formation with Lucas as an anchor with Gerrard and Miereles in front of him alternating in the attacking with Cole behind Torres and Kuyt/N'Gog, sort of like this:

                                           Lucas
                        Gerrard                       Miereles

                                           Cole

                             Torres               Kuyt/N'Gog

    That way it gives us the chance to get our best players on the field at the same time while not playing a 4231 formation with an unconfident Torres being by himself? What you think? Width is a concern but we have no real wingers at the minute and until January with our next few games being "winnable" maybe we should give it a go?

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  85. Oh and in case anyone thinks I am advocating Gerrard and Miereles being played on the wings I'm thinking that they act more like central midfielders with Lucas, we have no wide men at the minute so I think this is the best we could probably do until January...do you think we will get any wingers or will Roy look at another striker just? With some necessary strengthening in the defence.

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  86. <span>"Hi Anteater.  I hope that's true, but why do you think that? What evidence is there from the last few years - or this season - that Cole will turn out ot be a great signing?" - Jaimie
    Based on this sound reasoning, wouldn't it be fair to use this logic on a certain Roy Hodgson? Last week it appeared as though you were defending his track record as a manager -- The media published slightly incorrect statistics about Roy Hodgon's away record and you ripped them apart. However, I think most people are concerned that Roy has not achieved anything of significance in recent history to suggest that he has the quality to turn things around -- Very similar to your judgement of Joe Cole. 
    I'm not disagreeing with you that JC might be a waste of money --- But you can't argue one way and then look away when it suits you. I mean you can, because this is your blog, but call it both ways. </span>

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  87. Babel will be sold in January. I think a more suitable solution to our problems:
    - Drop Lucas and play Gerrard in midfield with Meireles
    - Move Glen Johnson to right midfield and play Martin Kelly at right back
    - Shift Kuyt upfront alongside Torres - Or drop Kuyt and play Joe Cole in the hole with Maxi on the left. 

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  88. Unfortunately Cole is a flop to date. He is as bad as Konchesky and Poulsen why what we had in the past are used as a benchmark. I dont see any of these 3 an improvement on Benayoun, Insua and Mesharano, If there is any, feel free to detail the figures and facts.

    You can also run a comparable analysis on Benayoun and Cole. Benayoun came out on top in numbers of assist, goals, completion of passes. Cole gets the headlines simply because he is English. Clue: Carlos let Cole leave for free and bought Benayoun, He is no fool.  With Knochesky, he held his hands up and admitted he wasnt up to pal. Poulsen is just terrible. I dont buy the stats presented by Jaimie. Poulsen is never called upon in a top game, Lucas is still the prefered defensive midfielder.

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  89. Your avatar cracks me up everytime I see it :-P . And, how come you are sporting ads on your site now? I remember you vehemently "advertising" the ad-free nature of your site? Not that I see anything wrong with it, just asking.

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  90. Attention! BankRun 2010:

    BankRun 2010 is a movement initiated by retired football player Eric Cantona. It organizes a massive collective withdrawals of money from the banks. It is organised on the Internet by a network of Facebook events.

    I thought as many others that the movement initiated by Eric Cantona was spontaneous and naive and thought that I could hang myself to it in order to establish La Nouvelle Économie. After a Skype discussion with Géraldine Feuillien I came to the conclusion that it was a movement whose brain manipulator is still unknown but whose purpose is to establish an economic system probably fascist that will emerge by terror rather than a movement that will foster the economic interests of each of us.

    The page of our community contains instructions concerning measures to be taken before December 7 to preserve your life savings.


     La Nouvelle Économie

     
    http://www.youtube.com/v/U2f4_xaS_J8" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="170" height="140

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  91. Roy has gone on record as saying 'it is too easy to mark wingers' which is why he isn't a big fan.  He should have been at the Tottenham game.

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  92. Not for this thred but a question to JK and anyone else who might know. The latest news regarding Hicks and Gillett going back to court in Feb and a suit involving RBS NESV and Martin Broughton does anyone know how this might affect the club or its current ownership

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  93. Really mate? Ngog you want to have a pop at.  Slightly off topic here now but N'gog clearly has some ability andcould be a useful signig.  You must have seen that from the games he has played whe we have had 2 up-front.  Just look at Utd (a) when things turned in our favour as soon as we brought on a 2nd striker.  The problem with N'gog (as is the case with a number of other players>i that they have not been used properly.  Having N'Gog as back-up to Torres is not good enough, i agree.  Playing him up-front on his own is not good-enough.  But having him as 3/4th choice in a 4-4-2 formation is fine with hime playing in European and games etc and coming in when needed. The problem is not wit his ability, it's with his ole in the team.  He is a young talent who has ability and whilehemight not goon to be the next torres, he coul prove to be quite a valuable asset is years to come i believe.

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  94. shaping up like another robbie keane to me...

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  95. dont expect any of the usual smart ass replies for that comment A-Red...Some people will sell their mothers for a bit of dough. Thats the operating priciple of mr. JKA who never watched liverpool until EPL came to India 3 years ago..

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  96. You are doing your 2 bit lawyer thing again...

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  97. <p><span>Spot on Jamie with these observations. I dont often agree with your opinion but I give you your props for your research even when we disagree with the interpretation but this time I find we share the same position. </span>
    </p><p><span>Without trying to be controversial, the media was all over Aquilani for flopping this time last year even though he was not fully fit yet Joe Cole, who when you do the maths is almost as expensive is being treated as a returning hero for Liverpool despite flopping in Liverpool's 24 matches this season whether its suspension, injuries or poor form.</span>
    </p><p><span>Stats that read 12 appearances in 24 Liverpool matches is extremely poor reading for someone brought to bolster Liverpool and in a way touted as the man to do what Aquilani couldn’t do.</span>
    </p><p><span>Aquilani may have cost upwards of £18million and am not sure how much he was on a week <span> </span>but I may not be far off the mark by assuming the initial amount paid to Roma may not be far off Joe Cole getting £5 signing on fee and about £90k a week which is almost as free as Benayoun was to Chelsea even though he cost Chelsea about £5.5million.</span>
    </p><p><span>I do wish he goes on to prove me wrong but history suggests Joe Cole is a player with one or 2 tricks, who is often on the sidelines through injury and when fit was at best 3<sup>rd</sup> choice for the last 5 Chelsea managers but then for an inexplicable reason the media believes he is the man to turn Liverpool around. </span>
    </p>

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  98. Sorry for going off-topic Jamie, just wanted to ask how you got your hands on the clubs annual financial report for some of your other articles. I'd quite like to have a look at them but can't find a pdf for them anywhere. Thanks.

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  99. Hi Wilkie0408

    Yeah, I'm sure you're right actually. its too late in the day now for RB to have any sort of impact on the LFC team. Its a real shame, the guy has undoubted raw talent but maybe lacks an element of footballing understanding that can only be honed via regular competetive fixtures. Unfortunately, his image has been unfairly tarnished by the tweeting, the musical exploits etc which to me seems to suggest a young man that has not nurtured or valued in the right way. Anway, this is definitely a discussion for another thread...whatever happens to Babel in January, I wish him luck.

    As for your idea about moving GJ up to right wing, and then transfering Kuyt to a strikers role, I find the suggestion very intriguing. There is no doubt that Kelly could be a prodigous talent at RB, his level of recent performances, considering his age and experience , have been excellent. GJ is natural attacking player, he's pacey and he likes to take on players. Virtually all his weaknesses in the RB role, such as being caught out of position, are as a result of defensive failings. Its fair enough if you have a young, mobile right sided CB to cover for you, but unfortunately GJ's defensive ineptitude has been further highlighted by JC's loss of pace. Spurs converted Gareth Bale to a more attacking role with considerable success as we all know, admittedly Bale was at an earlier stage in his career, however for me the idea has real potential!

    There's no doubt NESV would big proponents of your plan. Encouraging and developing the young talent we have is infinitely more preferable to paying the excessively bloated transfer fees that many potential January signings could command. It would also go someway to ease the concerns within LFC and its fans regarding the development and promotion of some of our younger players. The loss of players such has DeValle and Insua, coupled with the (admittedly twisted) media driven speculation regarding Pacheco's future has led some supporters to question if we are doing enough to encourage our talented youth prospects. The fact that MK is Mersey born and bred is even better considering the last succesfull local lad nurtured and developed through the ranks was Stevie G!

    Comolli talks about the importance of identifying and developing young British talent. Here at LFC, for the first time in quite a while, we are in the enviable position of having a glut of young talented and ambitious British players raring to break into the first team! Messrs Kelly, Shelvy, Eccleston, Wilson, Ince and others... we salute you!

    (Apologies for cross thread nature of this post...however very few issues relating to LFC are uniquely discreet!

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  100. How come you were quick to criticise Rafa for signing bad players, yet Roy's name is left out of this article?

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  101. Poulson,Koncheskey and cole are shit9:54 pm, December 02, 2010

    Just another shit signing by your favourite man manager Hodgson! I'm suprised you have even bothered commenting considering your such a fucking hypocrite

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  102. Where did Roy say that? Was it in any papers?

    If that is true then we could be looking at a problem with finding players for a new system. Always thought the Hodge supported a 442 formation though *DONT_KNOW* . Cheers for the reply by the way.

    Well what formation do you think we will end up playing? We need an injection of serious pace in this team...would make our attack look better at least. :-D

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  103. Roy's name is in the article:

    "The responsibility for Cole's signing lies squarely on the shoulders of Roy Hodgson. Earlier in the season, Hodgson made a point about 'expensive failures' at Liverpool, but rather ironically, he is also culpable for the same mistake with Cole."

    There you go mate :D.

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  104. I thought Kelly did well last night and totally agree about Babel. I hope that he can rescue his career but it is not looking good for him. However, bar the Chelsea game, Babel's performance last night was as good as anything that Torres has produced this season. Far better than what Torres produced last Sunday. So, as a stand in for Torres, we could do a lot worse. I'd like to see Kelly get a run in the team and Johnson move forward to right midfield. I'd like to see Babel play up top with Torres for a few games before being moved on. I somehow doubt we'd see the best of Meireles alongside Gerrard. Before anyone gets oversensitive about Gerrard, is it me or do a lot of midfielders not show their best alongside Gerrard? Could his one man heroics be at the cost of the team performance sometimes? 

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  105. I find it odd, though, that an experienced international needs all his international team mates to big him up or his manager to come out and say that he is a confidence player, as if Pacheco or Babel are not confidence players. Jovanovic has show more than Cole has, he also has a good pedigree, is similar age and has come in from a different country. Yet, after his goal yesterday, he appears to be clearly losing his battle to stay at the club, while Cole is getting praised by the manager and his team mates and has produced nothing. I wouldn't write Joe Cole off, but I would not write off some of the others either.

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  106. Well maybe Joe ought to be paid using sabermetrics, maybe thats the way they could cut wages significantly, then this column may well be used to raise money to pay his rent for him.

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  107. I was pleasantly surprised when we signed Joe Cole, but my opinion of Joe was formed when he was 21 playing for West Ham. He was an amazing talent who has sadly never really fulfilled his potential possibly due to choosing the wrong club in Chelsea, financially motivated??

    Some fans over reacted welcomed him as the messiah, purely because we have been starved of players of his ilk for a long time at Liverpool, Rafa signed Garcia who was a similar kind of player

    We were often linked with Aimar for years but it never materialised

    We have to be patient with Cole because we all know that he has the talent. Hopefully he will blossom at some stage

    I fear he may have picked Liverpool for financial reasons though :(

    Judging players purely by stats is pedantic and inaccurate

    What if a player sets up team mates for tap ins and they keep missing? He then doesn't get an "assist"

    If it was easy as looking up pass completion stats, assists, Opta stats etc then why do football clubs employ scouts??

    How could one possibly quantify all the running off the ball to create space / free men that occurs in the make up of a Barcelona attack using such stats

    Stats only make up a small part of overall picture

    This, i fear, is where the new owners could fall down unless Roy / next manager retain a veto on player signings

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