24 Jan 2012

Steve NICOL: Kenny's Bolton THREAT was aimed at these SIX players...

Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish publicly eviscerated his players after the wretched performance against Bolton at the weekend, and threatened to get rid of certain playres if they continued to perform in such a disappointing manner. Dalglish didn't name names, but Anfield legend Steve Nicol has given his thoughts about who might be on Kenny's sh1t-list.

Speaking on ESPN Mobile, Nicol - who won a shedload of trophies playing under Dalglish in the 1980s - admitted that he'd never seen the Liverpool manager so angry:

"I haven't seen Kenny that angry in a long long time.

"With that statement, he's not picking anybody out because he wants everyone to go home and think 'is he talking about me'? This is a warning; Kenny knows who he's talking about, and he is not a guy who goes back on his threats.

"Kenny always talks about effort, attitude and commitment, and if you give him those three things, he'll stick with you. Obviously, some of them weren't, and he won't stick with them".

After the Bolton game, Dalglish accused his players of disrespecting Liverpool's history and heritage, but to which players was he referring? Nicol has own theory:

"It's tough to have a go at the back four. They've had the best record in the premier league, and there are going to be days where they make mistakes, and aren't quite at the top of their game.

"I think Kenny was talking about players from the middle to the front. I'm not going to pick out anybody because, frankly, they were all as bad as each other.

"Gerrard, I'm guessing, is safe as houses, but everyone else has to ask themselves if they're doing enough. If they're doing the best they can, they won't be there for that much longer.

Taking Gerrard, Bellamy (who scored) and the back four out of the equation, that leaves the following 'middle to front' players:

* Maxi
* Henderson
* Adam
* Downing
* Carroll
* Kuyt

Dirk Kuyt's effort and commitment has never been in question; in fact, those are the qualities that define him as a player. He may not have made an impact against Bolton but it wasn't through lack of trying.

Maxi didn't have the best of games but he does not have a history of shirking his on-field responsibilities; pus, he has played well in all his appearances this season, so the Bolton game was clearly a one-off.

Ultimately, we're left with four of Dalglish's own signings: Henderson, Downing, Carroll and Adam, and on the day, all four (plus Gerrard IMO) deserved the most criticism.

The question is, does Dalglish have the cojones to follow through with his threat and get rid of his own high-priced signings? Yes, according to Nicol:

"Kenny is not someone who's going to be loyal just because he spent money on them. If they're not doing well, he'll make a change".

That may have been true once upon a time, but is it still true now?

We shall see...

Jaimie Kanwar


  1. I'll beleive it when it see it. Big mistakes have been made on Carroll and Downing. Adam was only 7 mill and is a reasonable squad player and Henderson is a young lad with potential.  

  2. think you could add glen johnson to that. the body language says it all with those. i honestly believe carroll put the effort in, he looked very frustrated with lack of quality passes or crosses.
    the problem is hes coming deep to get the ball where he wants get more involved.lack of confidence not effort.hes slowly getting fitter.
    adams was shocking that day, henderson had his usual non effective day.
    maxi looks fed up, so does kuyt.
    kenny should take a leaf out of last seasons revival and get some young keen blood in the starting 11. wats to lose. the fans would appreciate the idea and im sure we got enough young talent to push on in the right direction.

  3. Would love to see sterling given a run out! There is no way he could contribute less than Downing!

  4. hes wasted our money he had access to lots of money benitez didnt have that nuch money and now hes refusing to buy im starting to doubt kenny honestly

  5. Lowee78 the one chance Carroll had to score he completely missed THE BALL!
    He's slow he doesn't see a pace doesn't offer an oulet when the defence is under pressure.
    Carroll doesn't chase balls into the channels.
    Carroll doesn't harass the opposition defence.
    Carroll HAS NOT put maximum effort in.
    If this is Carroll playing at his maximum then he's not good enough.

    Why do we look more fluid with Suarez and not Carroll?

    I hope this kick up the backside works but ultimately this is 2012 not 1988.
    Players are Richer more powerful, harder to motivate.

    Something is going wrong at the training ground and we see the results on the pitch IT'S THAT SIMPLE

  6. Glenn Johnson should be top of the list!......Carroll and Henderson for me showed great effort and should be excluded.

  7. 1 chance from 90 mins of football in a game against bolton (no disrespect) surely you should be questioning elsewhere more?
    hes andy carroll not wayne rooney, his game is not chasing balls down the channels.
    i disagree about the effort he put in.
    the system and the team that day did not work. simple.
    maybe you should start a hate campaign against andy carroll and kenny lol
    just joking.
    frustrating times for everyone!
    hopefully in the near future we will be on here praising to players and manager

  8. The heat Henderson gets from fans is he has played every game while he was touted as future talent meaning that he had to be gradually phased in. 
    £16mln or £20mln for potential is a bit too much if you consider the other future prospect who doesn't play cost only £7mln.
    We also have loads of potential stars in the reserves such as Coady who could be tried as the Lucas replacement but KD persist with the one dimensional new midfield duo of Adam and Henderson who don't even deliver what they were known for at their former clubs.
    Take Charlie Adam for example, he was adept at penalties - (he has missed the only one he has taken for Liverpool). 
    His corners led to goals - (for Liverpool's most of these hit the first opposition defensive player) KD shldnt have taken Fergie's recommendation on this one. 
    He would make audacious passes that found team-mates prompting ill-advised opinion of a certain legend who proclaimed him better than Alonso live on telly - (he now gives Carra a run for his money for hoofing so opposition can quickly retrieve possession and launch another wave of attack which he struggles to defend against because he is one paced and can only barge from behind)
    Would bringing on Sterling for Downing make us any worse than we already are.
    We are said to have bought 19 year old Teixeira who plays the same role as Suso but already have Shelvey, Henderson and Adam aheead of them while we are linked with Granero. What is the game plan here, buy future talent whose time never comes and get average players to block their progress to the first team. 
    If KD can trust a Henderson a Sunderland prospect, why not trust Shelvey, Suso, Coady or Sterling who are already in the club structures and possibly effectively spend the £16mln-£20mln on ares that needed addressing rather than donating to Sunderland who in turn passed that money over to United who used it outbid us for Jones(ironic isn't it).

  9. i agree, henderson needs to be played in the centre.id even rather see him at right back, not right mid, it clearly dont work at all.
    not excluding kelly by that!!

  10. Adam scored a penalty against westbrom.

  11. You are right Stco, Adam did score against West Brom. 
    Other than the point you corrected, do you have an opinion on the other points I raised?

  12. Money wasted on all of them. aguero cheaper than carroll, mata cheaper than downing, cabaye alot cheaper than henderson. we're absolute mugs in the tranfer market always have always will be.

  13. Shelvy lacks pace, positional awareness and is just not good enough for the premiership - I dont care he is only 19  - he will be another that ends up in the Championship, thats his level.

  14. Who wants to watch a team that lump balls in the air to slow and ungainly players ......oh yes Stoke City fans

  15. hendo lacks passion, creativity, commitment and flair, we need a good no10 to dominate the game aka zherdan shakiri, gerrard covering the top half of the park, lucas adding protection.
    + we also need a right of left winger with spark like zaha to drag defenders and ping some decent crosses

  16. spot on mate...like i mentioned before, Henderson needs to be dropped for more the prolific Shelvey

  17. you can't be serious about Caroll putting in the effort are you???? I have no problem if things aren't, for whatever reason, happening for a guy but lack of effort is not acceptable.. seriously I ve yet to see a more laboured or lazy forward... Pepe was right , he doesn't like to run.. the guy just jogs around the park and even at that it looks like he cant be bothered.. you'd say something if he was banging in goals week in and out(berbatov esque in his hay day) but hes not, so the very least you can do is burst a gut for the cause .. He is LAZY .. and I for one have no time for a guy that cant even be bothered to run.. I do!nt even think i ve seen him break a sweat ! its pathetic.. he should be ashamed of himself .

  18. I went to the game sat, Carroll tried but feeds off scraps and after 70 mins gave up chasing balls played over the full backs heads. Surely KD did not buy him to do this and I think he is being treated unfairly and can only judge him when he starts to get the service he got at NUFC.

  19. Think that it is wrong of Nicol to make these type of comments, they are not helping. I think that some of you are being unfair about Johnson, I think he has played well this season. An attacking team that goes forward and plays high up the pitch would suit him, as it would most of our defenders. Enrique was worse than Johnson on saturday. But i think we have two good full backs when we attack.

    Henderson has potential but is still overpriced, Carroll does need better service and at least linked with Bellamy a couple of times. Adam has been a disappointment, though, and he and Gerrard should never play together unless we have a five man midfield with a proper defensive midfielder in there. But if we have no width and can't keep the ball for our full backs to get forward, then Carroll's effectiveness is going to be less. Particularly if we are not keeping the ball or creating anything. We could do with someone who can dribble, show some flair, our play is one dimensional. Agree with Chris, until Carroll gets the service that caused us to buy him, it is unfair to slate him.

  20. Spot on.. Its 2012 not 1988 .. The most labourious forward I ever saw was mickey quinn .. all 20 stone of him lol .. At least micky was just fat but he still managed to put a few away.. goals and meat pies har har.. Caroll just doesnt seem to like running !!! not to mention SPRINT.. he cant be that slow ..even mickey ran faster.. so he must be that LAZY.. Sorry but have no sympathy or respect for a professional sports man whose job it is to run and he doesnt want to run !!! And don't let anybody give me any shit about thats his 'style'  I know when a guy is trying to run as fast as he can !!!!!

    Was a time when 100 effort from a player was a given.. the bare minimum everybody excepted and accepted.. these days it seems like thats an extra with a player, like rear electric windows on a golf !! He needs to start grafting and fast !!!! Goals aside he has alot of making up to do for me, and alot of others i susspect, before I ll even begin to take him serious as a liverpool player.

  21. Adam. If you buy an £8m player from a relegation team you get a very average player. He is slow; is knackered by the second half; can't tackle; can't cover back; and needs too much time on the ball. His passing isn't that great either. Other clubs weren't exactly queueing up for him. He is a squad player at best, and I mean, at best. He should never be a starter.

    For my money, one of the worst buys at Liverpool in the time I have watched them (since 1965)

  22. The players and manager are the problem...dalglish signed them and dictates how they play.

    Dalglish is the problem...the solution is to find a manager who will take us forward....even if we stick with dalglish for 3years things will not get better..we will continue finishing in top 8 ...so why not get rid of him now rather than 3years down the line.

    Its like if we had stuck with Roy for three seasons..we would have still been pathetic at the end as we were at the start.

  23. Gerrard was absolutely non-existent in the first half against Bolton. Very poor showing from the captain. Adam was horrible but he wasn't helped by Gerrard, who should have been setting a better example as captain and a experienced member of the side. 

    Of course with all Stevie G has done for the club, he doesn't get the same level of flak that the likes of Adam and co got.

  24. I think only Agger and Bellamy gave 100%...d rest seemed to be not interested..Reina shud b excused as he didnt hv much choice whn the engine room is not running...as much as i like Enrique..dat very night vs bolton...he tend to keep d ball at his feet too long...unusual of his...

  25. When Caroll on the field...the game plan is very much predictable. I'd like to c bellamy n gerrard upfront for a change...CA n shelvey operating in d MF...i bet opponent will find this more of a threat compare to predictable carroll

  26. The sad thing is about the names listed is that all our new signings except Bellamy and Enrique are on there!
    A cost of around $80 million has been spent on Henderson, Downing, Carroll and Adam!
    Very disappointing it has to be said! I just wonder who is actually in charge of all transfers?
    They need to be replaced!

  27. What better service?? Downing set him up with a clear goal scoring chance near the end of the game and he didnt even get boot to ball - an air kick was all the came of it!! Better service?? What the $#$#?
    Wake up man!!! Are you completely delusional ?
    Stop with this crap he needs better service = against Newcastle - Gerrards cross to his feet right in front of goal - he couldnt control it, let alone find the back of the net!! Better service???
    His job as a center forward is to put away all those little chances - or at least most of them - and to at least get on target..
    What do you want - him to be set up so he can just tap it it?
    Downing has set him up with 1 such chance from 5 yards and he could only hit the crossbar!!
    Why cant he just get the ball, beat a few defenders and bury it in the back of the net ?? Thats what CLASS center forwards do if you care to look around..

  28. Contracts count and as such Aguero costs A LOT more than Carroll. I agree with the overall sentiment of your argument however - there is far more value in the market than Dalglish has managed to find

  29. Maxi got subbed off yet again, and combined with the tendency to drop him so frequently even when he's one of few goal threats in the team, I think that says enough about Dalglish's thoughts on his contributions to the team. As I've said many times, if he doesn't score, he doesn't really contribute anything. A goal poacher/goal hanger isn't my idea of a great wide-man.

    And for all Kuyt's supposed work rate, he is contributing absolutely nothing to the team either. Fwiw, I'm not seeing any evidence of this enhanced commitment anyway. Dalglish should've offloaded him to Benitez (at Inter) when he had the chance. 

    Dalglish's holding onto the two of them (and their big wages) while admitting through his actions that neither are key components of his team is just another example of his failing to judge the transfer market properly... :-(

  30. Gerrard isn't a defensive midfielder - It is Dalglish's fault that we're getting no return from the guy when he's playing closer to our own goal than to the opposition box!

    Btw, I know that neither Adam, Henderson nor Spearing Henderson are naturally defensive midfielders either, but it would make far more sense to curb their natural games than Gerrard who severely eclipses any of them in the attacking third. Or to just play a more natural fit (Coady or Agger??) as holding midfielder and give the attacking players free reign to play their more natural games...

  31. Dalglish was absolutely conned by Fungusface,who made out that he was interested in Adam! He made a point of saying Adam was worth at least 10mil,when in actual fact he did'n't rate adam at all,and was just stirring up problems for LFC as usual! IT'S ABOUT TIME LFC woke up to AF,he makes a laughing stock of them!
    BENITEZ had him weighed up and Ferguson did'n't lke that!
    BRING BACK RAFA as soon as possible,LFC need him to drag them out of the mess that KK has made with his PANIC buys'

  32. I think you'd have to include the two full-backs from the Bolton game. Enrique in particular, who has been our most consistent player probably, was awful.

  33. Kenny. you also join NATO, No Action Talk Only.

  34. As per usual a series of non-supportive comments from FIFA playing t#####s who will not be satsified unless we bought Messi, Xavi, .... well the entire Barca team I guess. We are in a cup semi, 6 points of top 4 - that alone is huge progress compared to last year. In addition, we have actually played some descent football for the majority of the season which will turn into more goals sooner rather than later. Come on you REDS, come on Andy, come on Adam, come on Henderson, come on Downing, come on all off you ... YNWA 

  35. Give kuyt and maxi an extended run in the team, and bellars has to play every game. All three are intelligent players who look for space I.e the Liverpool way. Kuyts form as sufferred due to his stop start involvement in team. His combo with suarez last season was brilliant. Wish people would get off glen Johnson's back, he seems pretty loyal to me and as per Stevie Nicol, the defense has been solid this season. Downing doesn't impact games enough and seems to hide when the going gets tough, and Carroll, as much as I like him as a player: square peg round hole.

  36. Yes, I know that but he has played there before and should be using all his experience to help Adam out in the first half. No excuses for Stevie. He should have known better. Its a basic thing in central midfield...TRACK AND MARK YOUR RUNNERS, which he failed to do big time.

    I don't agree it would make far more sense. For me, you build from the back, i.e., make sure defensively we are ok from the back and central midfield. Stevie is defensively more capable than Hendo and Adam, so he should have been sitting deep, instead of playing like a headless chicken.

  37. Typical spin on an article by JK to highlight the new signings.and their failings in YOUR OPINION!!!

    MAXI RODRIQUEZ lacks passion and COMMITMENT, pussies out of tackles, workrate NON existent, but Because he has scored 2 hatricks against Mighty Birmingham and Fulham last season you see his stats and value his productivity!!!IMO, he is intellegent and links up well with suarez, thats it, is slow, misses alot of chances as the Blackburn and Wigan game this season show, but to be fair atleast he puts himself in those positions!!!

    Dirk Kuyt is paid by LFC to play football, not run around a football field so we can all applaud his effort, we could play a middle distance athlete out there to do that, his biggest asset to LFC has been his knack of crucial important goals in massive games against the likes of Everton and Man Utd and in Europe, for all his effort the likes here allow him slack when if it had been Andy Carroll who had missed that open goal header against Stoke last week you would have had a field day. Everyone jumping on the band wagon.
    You need to start being fair JK, understand your point and frustrations with the new signings for not being world beaters from the outset but please stop defending the average players mentioned.

    IMO all of the back 4 were shite against Bolton, even Danny Agger who has been a rock this season. Special mention to KK and hius back room team with agger, 5 years at Anfield and been injured throughout most seasons, KK has got him fit and the main reason we are best defensive side in the premier League(We could put a negative spin on that and then say we are the least Creative team in the Prem League?? You do that if you like, I won't and i will be out tonight supporting my team as equals hoping they unite as a team and not worry about their price tags and their failure to justify this!!!!!)

    I do love the way MAXI escapes any criticism, so funny if you watch his whole performance he drifts out of games for so long you forget he is even playing at times!!!! And the lad might have only cost £1.5m but he is on over £80,000 a week!!!! that is why football is a beautiful game and all about opinions, as for Kuyt has he scored yet this season? Atleast Andy Carroll has scored 1,don't care about the price tags, equal players on too high wages. KK does need to act in transfer market and get rid of both of these players!!!!!!!

  38. We look a whole lot stronger defensively with Spearing holding the midfield, would hardly class him as attack minded, IMO we have missed him since he has been injured

  39. I disagreed with you yesterday but totally agree with this.

    Gerrard has played defensive midfield many times for LFC and England and is fully capable of doing a jog in there, just did not seem to want to last saturday IMO.

    Seem a lot stronger with Jay Spearing Holding the midfield

  40. Adam was never good enough - was completely baffled back when we first started showing an interest (when Hodgson was still manager).
    Andy Carroll, the same. So, he's 22.. or is that 23 now? Nando was 22 when he signed for us. If you're not ready at 21, you'll never be ready. If it takes 100 chances for the striker to get one goal, he ain't any use, Crouch is/was exactly the same. I remember a lot of games where Torres didn't get a touch for ages, let alone an actual shooting opportunity, the one chance came along and it was in the back of the net. Also, Carroll's reputation for being a piss-head should have been enough discouragement. I'm inclined to believe these two were ,ore to do with Commolli than Dalglish.
    Henderson? I've seen the odd flash where he looked the part, but not often...
    Maxi, Kuyt & Gerrard? Well, if the rest of the team can't be bothered, why would they risk injury busting their balls? All three have not had much game time recently, so unlikely to be battle ready.
    The back four - Agger, first game back from injury (?) and with Skrtl & Enrique, just a bad day at the office. Johnson, not good enough. We may have paid 17 million, but he has always been and will always be a 5 million right-back.
    You won't know for sure whether KD is going to wield the axe for sure until summer, though when the whole squad is available for a big game, who is on the bench may be a good indicator... more to the point, who doesn't even make the bench.
    Personally, staff-wise, Commolli needs the axe. He had a reputation at Spurs for signing a lot of crap, with the odd diamond among them. Also, if Suarez gets into any more controversy (lengthy bans for, I dunno, biting people maybe?) then his ass should be out the door, too.
    Mr Dalglish/Mr Commolli. Do your homework PROPERLY, in future.

  41. Jamie, you need to work for a tabloid mate.  You have a rare talent to derive the most hyperbolic speculations from, at times, some mickey mouse quantitative deductions.  It's not an insult.  There are good people at the tabloids and I'm sure you'd get paid quite a bit too for your work.

  42. Rafa, Rafa, Rafa, please bring him back!!!!

  43. absolutely spot on. SAF never talks up a player prior to purchasing. any player he does talk up like he did with adam was one we shouldn't have touched with a 12 foot barge pole.

  44. Bringing back Benitez - which I believe will happen - will just be yet another in the undending series of LFC disasters. He will accomplish absolutely nothing. You can go only so far on arrogance and stubborness and Benitez has got full mileage out of them. The best thing for LFC supporters to do is just write the club off - everything they do is crap.

  45. The fact is, though, that Adam did look good at Blackpool. So many players, once they move to Liverpool, lose every tiny bit of football talent they possess ( Keane and Cole - what crap! Yet they were fine for other clubs ). What is it about Liverpool that makes reasonable players become rubbish players overnight?

  46. Absolutely spot on! It's nothing to do with service - Carroll is a clueless lump masquerading as a footballer. At 35 million he has to be the worst buy in the history of LFC bar none. Send him back to Geordieland with a six pack under his arm.

  47. well, atleast i hope what u say is true!!!

  48. about rafa that is!!!

  49. Had Rafa had the money kk had there's no way he would have wasted it like kk did and buy overrated English crap !!!

  50. When Adam, Henderson or Downing score a hat trick against the might of Fulham, we will applaud them. I think it is time for Kuyt to move on, to be honest, but when you score a hat trick against Man Utd, you naturally get some leeway compared to Carroll. We don't have the best defensive record in the league, but we have one of the worst goalscoring records. Maxi might play better after the run of games that our new signings have had. Can't do worse. It is natural that if someone costs 20 million that you expect more from them. Until Kenny shows he can get something out of his current players, it is not worth giving him money to waste on, either, poor players or players that he doesn't know how to prepare for games.

  51. I agree.  Give some of the reserves a shot.  Sterling especially.  We are missing pace and flair at the moment.

  52. with all of the critisism I had for Benitez his transfer market buisness was one of the best.

    He had to gamble on some low priced players, and he failed with most, whereas with the exception of Robbie Keane, and maybe maybe GJ all of his big-money buys were successful to say the least.

    He has brought Reina, Arbeloa, Skrtel, Agger, Lucas, Mascherano, Alonso, Kuyt and Torres. 
    Oh the team all of them together would make(+SG, JE and a proper left-winger)
    Yes, he had plenty of cheap flops like Nunez, Pennant(which can be argued), Palleta, El Zahr, and others, and his youth raising was terrible, but in terms of transfers he knew class when he saw it, and he was willing to pay the price for it.

    Unfortunately, KD has the money, but is not spending it on quality, but on POTENTIAL, which all of us know is a very fragile thing(Pacheco, AC, anyone?).

    I really hope AC, Henderson and the rest will turn out to do a "Lucas" and that theyre just starting poorly.
    Either way, we should stick by them and give them at least this season to build as a team.

    I am not going to criticize L'pool squad for the performance they gave this season.

    Next season is the real challenge though. Those who will not make the grade next season should be sold.

  53. i dont know why kenny keeps playing henderson week in week out!!! ok that lad has potential but he is not good enough for 1st team yet..i think he should play for reserve team for now..and i dont know why dont we play jonjo shelvy when he was scoring goals on regular basis while on load..shelvy is hungry for goals and that is the type of player we need in our team right now..i reckon shelvy is good enough to play with gerrard..

  54. Ok then we have the 2nd best defensive record in premier league, joint top until Bolton game!!!!

    KK managed to prepare them to do a job last night didnt he? or are we all out to lynch the new signings and single them out for not pulling their weight, get off the band wagon!!
    Bellamy was a bad signing on a free transfer wasnt he??KK done ok there