10 Sep 2012

'We were punished!' - Benitez reveals names of three signings blocked by H+G...

In the 2008-9 season, Liverpool finished an agonising four points behind Manchester United, the closest the club had come to winning the league since Gerard Houllier's team finished second to Arsenal in 2002. Optimism was high in the summer months that followed, with lots of fans hoping the club could push on and finally break the 20-year old league hoodoo. Alas, everything fell apart in the disastrous 2009-10 season, and Rafa Benitez has once again laid the blame at the feet of reviled former owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett.

In his new book 'Champions League Dreams', Benitez claims that 'attempting to work in the transfer market that summer [2009] was almost impossible', and the Spaniard insists that he was blocked from buying at least three players that he feels would've helped Liverpool improve over the 2008-9 season. He explained:

"We knew we would need cover and support for Fernando Torres, as David Ngog was still developing, and we had raised the cash to find it. The player we identified to fill that role was Stevan Jovetic..

"The funds we thought we had available would also have stretched to another central defender, to provide [defensive] cover. The two players we had identified were Sylvain Distin, then with Portsmouth, and West Ham’s Matthew Upson, both boasting abundant Premier League experience.

"Signing one of those two, plus the tall, powerful, intelligent Jovetic, would have given Liverpool the squad we needed to build on the previous year’s title challenge, when we had run Manchester United so close".


I have no doubt that Benitez experienced problems trying to convince Hicks and Gillett to give him more money, but there is (arguably) a little historical revisionism going on here:

* Benitez spent £37m on Glen Johnson, Alberto Aquilani and Sotiris Kyrgiakos that summer. No one twisted his arm to sign those players.

* Johnson was (IMO) an unnecessary purchase, and Aquilani has proven to be one of the biggest transfer blunders in modern LFC history.

* Benitez could've spent that £37m on a striker and a central defender, but he chose to sign Johnson, Aquilani and Kyrgiakos.

* It seems likely that Benitez wanted more money on top of the £37m to sign Jovetic, Distin/Upson. Hardly a reasonable request, especially after he's just signed an injured midfielder with a LONG history of injuries to replace Xabi Alonso.

* Given the fact Benitez also wasted £28m on Robbie Keane and Dossena the summer before, and then signed Aquilani, is it any surprise that the club was reluctant to give him even more money? Benitez added:

"If only we had spent the money they had been told we would, perhaps we would have been able to take that final step"

Wishful thinking in the extreme. Even if Liverpool had signed Jovetic and, say, Distin, it's highly unlikely those two would've been enough to change the course of the 2009-10 season. In 2009, Jovetic was only 19 (!) and would've probably needed time to adjust to the league; and Distin, whilst a good player, is not going to transform a team into Premier League champions.

Do Hicks and Gillett deserve credit for the second place finish in 2009? Absolutely not, and I'm sure that LFC fans - and Benitez himself - would agree with that. Why, then, should they be blamed for the terrible 2009-10 season? You can't have it both ways, and blaming the club's former owners for failure on the pitch, is quite simply, opportunist buck-passing.

Benitez did a lot of great things for Liverpool, but no matter how he (repeatedly) spins it, he cannot relinquish responsibility for the catastrophic failure of his final season.

He made the decisions; he picked the team; he chose the tactics, and he decided how the available transfer funds would be spent.

The bucks stops with Benitez.

Jaimie Kanwar


182 comments:

  1. In one of those rare times, I actually agree with you....

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  2. Do you never tire of finding fault with Rafa Benitez? You don't like him, don't read the book.

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  3. Wow Its a kick Rafa Article, you need to move on mate.

    You write some interesting stuff, sometimes really good stuff but for all the shine you ruin it all with these constant attacks on Rafa.

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  4. I'm not sure you are right on this one.
    As Benitez stated before, he and his staff identified targets, but he didn't choose which of them would be signed.

    This is why he was angry at the signing of Robbie Keane without Gareth Barry. He kept claiming he wanted Barry first, and only then Keane, but whomever handled the transfers decided otherwise.

    I can see a similar thing going here - he might have wanted Jovetic(after this 19 year old scored twice against us in the champions league) as one of the top priorities, but got other targets instead.

    I do agree with you that after the signings of that summer Benitez had little to complain about.

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  5. Do you ever tire of making pointless comments. Try and grasp this concept: this is an LFC site that takes a critical view of the club overall. Benitez is an ex-LFC manager, which means his comments are there to be analysed.

    It is nothing personal; I do not 'dislike' Benitez, and if you can't hack fair criticism, then please take your pointless bitching elsewhere. Thanks.

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  6. Be this as it may, Benitez won the champions league for us in his first season! With a squad that had djimi traore, smicer, baros, mellor, pongolle etc- he and any manager had their faults but he was the best manager we have had in the last decade

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  7. He didn't read the book. He read a Daily Mirror article.

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  8. Bitching is almost always pointless. Agree ...?

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  9. With all due respect he bought Kyriakos close to deadline day for £1.5m and the Aquilani deal was not a straight cash deal of £17m, it was based on appearances and installments. Keane was sold in January for £16m according to the club accounts and Benitez received none of this in the summer. Alonso, Arbeloa and Voronin brought in a combined £36m according to the accounts published and the Johnson deal involved £8m of outstanding money owed to the club from Portsmouth for Peter Crouch. H + G promised £20m plus sales but only gave him the money received from sales. Alonso left very late in August and the player Benitez wanted to replace him, Barry, had joined City. The summer was a disaster as clearly Benitez didn't receive what had been originally promised. I am not a huge Rafa fan but what I will say is that his transfer dealings and generally management was far superior to anything the club has had since the early 80's. Recent history backs this up as we punched way above our weight in his time as manager. He had to run the club on the premise that he must sell before he could buy and apart from a few poor purchases he bought excellently. Benitez was a very soft target for the press and some of the questioning he faced in interviews was designed to undermine him. We only have to look at the tactical ineptidude of Hodgson's and kenny's regime to realise how good Benitez actually was.

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  10. And I doubt that we would be in the position we currently find ourselves in if he was still Manager.......

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  11. Rick Parry signed Keane. Benitez didnt want him

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  12. Matthew Upson? What a joke ahahahhahahahahahaha. If Benitez seriously thinks that Matthew Upson is a strong, valid defensive back up to grab the title then He needs a mind check up ahahahahahah

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  13. Like this comment if you trust Rafa over those snake oil salesmen, H + G.

    JK, is it true that you had close communication with Hicks? If so, I can understand your bitterness towards Rafa.

    How many people have inside access to a club owner?

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  14. With respect, I'm not sure where you get your figures from but they definitely do not come from the accounts. Why say that when it's blatantly not true? According to the actual accounts. which I have in front of me:

    * Liverpool received 12m for Keane, not 16m.

    * Alonso, Arebloa and Dossena were sold for a combined total of 29.7m, not 36m.

    * The Johnson deal is not referenced in the accounts; you've made that up, or - more likely - parroted what the media reported at the time. Additionally, Portsmouth's accounts make no reference to this alleged 8m owed over the Crouch deal. It's a myth.

    * Your contention that H+G promised Benitez 20m plus sales is speculation.

    The proof for what I've said about is in the article below, which contains actual snippets from the accounts:

    http://www.liverpool-kop.com/2012/04/lfc-transfer-fees-top-10-myths.html

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  15. I think Jamie has shown before vid club accounts that the Aquilani deal was money upfront, not n installment plan as reportedly claimed by the selling club at the time.

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  16. Yes, I was in regular contact with Hicks, but we never discussed Benitez at any point. The rare occasions Hicks brought up Benitez he was always positive. For example, he would praise Benitez's team selection after a win, or the manner of a performance etc. Nothing negative, ever.

    He contacted me initially because he appreciated the fact that I always tried to present objective info about the club's finances. At the time, there was an agenda in the press to make it appear that LFC's financial situation was much worse than it actually was, and I regularly posted articles around that time illustrating the actual reality.

    Hicks provided accurate figures about the club's finances, and I used them in my articles. The sole purpose of this was to simply ensure there was accurate info about LFC's finances in the public domain.

    That is a good thing, surely? Or would people prefer inaccurate info about the club to be floating around instead.

    Seriously, I do not have any bitterness towards Benitez. or Dalglish, or against anyone I've critiqued on this site. That's what this site is all about!

    Criticism doesn't always have to be underpinned by personal issues, and in my case, it definitely isn't.

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  17. Benitez did want him but Keane was part of Rafa's tactical plan that meant Barry had to come first, then Keane. When that backfired/failed, Keane became 'collateral damage' as put by Benitez himself in a interview in 2009. Benitez did want him.

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  18. One word for Benitez - deluded. I bet he also thinks Simao, Heinze and Lucas Neill would have helped him win the treble every year! I wish Rafa would just shut up now, he's actually ruining his reputation by promoting his book in the week of the Hillsborough judgement, while most people are focused on JFT96 Rafa still bleats about the past 'problems' while fans are remembering the sadly now dead.

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  19. Gawd, not this again! This myth has been debunked by Benitez himself! In 'an audience with Rafa Benitez', he publicly stated that he wanted to sign Keane, yet fans still refuse to accept it.

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  20. There was a book released soon after the departure of the two crazy American cowboys and in this book (Epic Swindle by Brian Reade), one can find details of how Benitez had his hands tied regarding which players he could buy.

    For example, Rafa was restricted to buying Johnson and Aquilani because Portsmouth still owed us money (in the form of instalments I believe) from the sale of Crouch while Roma owed us money from the sale of Riise. In order to make it appear to outsiders like Liverpool were spending a lot of money, Rafa was effectively restricted to buy from those two clubs. I remember there was also a clause in Aquilani's deal which stipulated that if he played more than 20 games, we would have to pay extra. As a result, Rafa ended up not playing Aqua even well after his injury had healed and he ended up playing only 18 games, thereby, not surpassing the 20 game clause.

    I believe that Robbie Keane transfer was not Rafa's work either. Rafa barely gave him a game and almost kept him out of the squad as a statement of intent. It was a similar situation with Aquilani but as I mentioned before, there was that clause as well. Rafa was always a big fan of Jovetic and he mentions it frequently that he wanted to sign him. When he mentions Jovetic's name, he always make subtle references of how he ended up getting somebody else instead.

    I am pointing these out to balance your article, because it seems like you are not aware of some things and it's unfair on Rafa.

    I find it very professional when you quote official figures and data like the net transfer myth were it clearly shows how much we have overspent. Now, the challenging part is to convert that quantitative data to qualitative because quantitative data is good to give a general image but lacks the probing qualities of qualitative data. Like I said before, Rafa had his hands tied during particular periods of his reign and I believe the only reason he stayed was because he loved Liverpool so much. Under such circumstances, he had left Valencia some six years earlier but then chose to fight on and stay with us until the club's ownership and financial status had become critical. The last thing the cowboys wanted as they tried to cling to this club and suck the life out of it was an insider telling the fans how things really were, so they sacked him.

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  21. Thanks for your comments. The book to which you refer was written by a staunch Benitez apologist, and totally lacked any objectivity at all when it comes to assessing the reign of H+G.

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  22. So selling Keane, Alonso, Arbeloa, Dossena brought in nearly £42m.

    At the very least we needed a striker, midfielder, full-back just to stay at the same level from 2008/09 - let alone spending more money to actually become BETTER than Man Utd.

    Aquilani, Johnson, Kyrgiakos cost £37m so at the very least why was there not £5m left to spend?

    It seems highly likely that Rafa was told he could spend what he raised from sales and was then shafted by Hicks and Gillett for the £5m which would have gone a long way to getting in Jovetic.

    So compared to January 2009, the LFC squad in Aug 2009 was one senior player lighter (and that's ignoring the fact Hyypia and Pennant also departed in the summer) and still expected to not only repeat the feat of finishing 2nd in the league but going one better!

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  23. Benitez finished 7th in his last season - that is why he was sacked! Aston Villa finished above us that season and it was Rafa's 4th successive season without a trophy, yeah great times! Not.

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  24. "Catastrophic failure on his final season" is such a vague term after successive worse seasons. I mean 1 bad season after almost winning the league, two CL finals, and successive CL qualification (do you remember we were in the "big four" of English football?) is almost inconsequential to where we are now. He did made some mistakes, costly ones, but mistakes like any other manager. The difference was that we didn't have as much money. God I miss Benitez...

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  25. Rafa has clearly stated more than once that he wanted Keane. Keane certainly was a part of Rafa's work. He had a tactical plan to involved getting two men, Barry and Keane, and only got one of the two. Rightly or wrongly, because of the failure to get Barry, Rafa threw Keane aside.

    Anything by the likes of Reade and Tomkins always have a particular slant but then again, plenty say the same about JK and his so-called agenda, eh JK ;)

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  26. Jamie, will you ever write a decent article, or is it beyond you?

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  27. In response to your response to me that has now disappeared.


    I still find it remarkable that you had such access.

    I, too, would theoretically like a Rafa return in some guise but that could only happen if things got really bad over the next few years, so let's hope that scenario doesn't arise.

    I'd say current owners didn't dare consider him after his open warfare with last owners - regardless of the apparent legitimacy of his position.

    Yes, it is definitely a good thing that you release accurate financials.

    I withdraw my inference of a personal bias in this article. Your response is logical and measured.

    Sometimes it is hard to believe that there may be someone out there who doesn't have an agenda.....

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  28. Wake up jk! You donot know the whole truth of the politicking at the board room level so stop spitting venom. Benitez's still better than all the last 4 managers we have had so far and his players still hold LFC squad's core!

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  29. Yes, Benitez made some quality signings, and they're still going strong to this day.

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  30. My response below. Your comment disappeared from my browser for a while there

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  31. Even my posts fall victim to the infernal word filter sometimes!

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  32. All those players you mention in a derogatory manner, would
    probably walk into the present squad, even Traore , who has
    been unfairly ridiculed by the most `knowledgable`fans in
    fooball. Djimi would be in my team anytime before the
    `leg end`.

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  33. The last 4 managers ? would surely include himself .

    Better than Hodgson , Dalglish no doubt , but a bit

    unfair on BR . Lets give him the same length of stay

    as Rafa then judge him.

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  34. Benitez was blessed with inheriting a truly top class game winner in Stevie G. IMO Benitez would not have lasted 30months but for Gerrard who was at his peak then. Take Gerrard out of his teams, and where do you think those teams would have won or challenged for anything.
    I thank him for what he achieved at LFC, now he is consigned to our history, so wish he would just STFU, and get on with his life, past glories are exactly that, PAST.

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  35. Well, there we go again. Yes, I think Rafa should just shut up and move on. After so many seasons, we are still into this Rafa debate. And fans are going on and on into this Rafa debate. I like Rafa. Its easy to look back in hindsight and say what is right and wrong and what if this and that.

    Like all humans, Rafa has his positives and negatives during his tenure. Fans can argue for all they want but it isn't going to change history. Its sad that fans still live in the past. Lets just move on folks.

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  36. Stevan Jovetic looks good. Distin would be a good cover for Agger and Skrtel. Maybe Rafa is right. With Torres, Gerrard and Jovetic combining and banging in the goals while Masch is still around to cover the back 4, who knows. We may be able to challenge for the title.

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  37. Rafael Benitez expressed his "surprise" to why he was not given a 2nd chance by FSG to replace Kenny Dalglish. Rafael Benitez should know better than anyone else why he was not approached by FSG as to name him LFC manager for a 2nd reign. For 6 years Rafael Benitez succeeded to divide the LFC fans and turn them against any ownership and LFC directors suggesting that they should be blamed for his 6 years failure to win the EPL and for just earning 2 titles – 1 CL and 1 FA cup! Since he left his post back in 2010 consciously during specific periods he intervenes with an ultimate purpose to be presenting himself to LFC fans as the only capable manager for LFC, a manager who was the reason for LFC to lose the EPL title from ManU, a manager who was the reason behind Xabi Alonso’s departure, a manager who have never brought in a real winger, a manager who brought in flop players as Andriy Voronin, Josemi, Albert Riera, Antonio Núñez, a manager who under his 6 years reign no young player was developed by the academy! Rafael Benitez is interested in two things, and two things only: making you afraid of it, and telling you who's to blame for it! Rafael Benitez you only benefited for being LFC’s manager and you better leave this team progress simply because your 15 minutes are up!

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  38. Jaimie you not dead yet?

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  39. Voronin was free. Just saying.

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  40. He was better than Kyrgiakos (defensively, that is).

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  41. Personally I think the Rafa debate rages on because he was the last manager of this club to bring any kind of sustained hope for us. Not just with Istanbul or the 2009 League run, but also consistently competing in the Champions League year after year, keeping our wits about us against rich clubs like Real Madrid, Chelsea, Barca, Milan, etc. I also think that in his last season (or the transfer window before that) he was inches away from strengthening the team before everything just crumbled before him - Alonso leaves, Aqua man couldn't fill his shoes, Kyrgiakos is signed (arguably as second or third choice) which ultimately led to our exit from the Champions League in the group stage (such awful defending at Lyon!); what if Alonso stayed.... what if we were able to sign Jovetic and provide adequate cover for Torres (Ngog should never have been the second striker for LFC).

    Yes - the debate goes on, and until someone else (hopefully BR in the coming years) can bring us back to that level where we were competing with the very best, fans will always look back to that tumultuous 2009/2010 season and the 2009 transfer window and think "what if...."

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  42. I loved Rafa and always will, he left a fantastic academy behind. This could be his biggest legacy at LFC, time will tell.

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  43. jaimie think the johnson deal had a lot to do with pourtsmouth owing lfc a lot of money over previous transfers the yanks new they were [portmouth]in financial trouble so got johnson as part of a deal on money owed

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  44. I don't care what anyone says, Had Rafa stayed and had 50 odd million to spend, we would be in the top 4. FACT.

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  45. This is one fact that die hard Rafa supporters would not accept - he inherited Stevie. He did not come into the club that was in turmoil unlike Hodgson and Kenny. Yes he made some good buys but at the same time also many bad buys.

    I wished he had built up a stronger pool of potential young players who can be blended into the team like what Sir Alex and Arsene did. Even when Arsene's hands were tight, they can still finish in the top 4 inspite of their top players leaving. We became reliant on Gerrard and Torres as seasons went by.

    Irregardless, he did won us the Champs League and finished top 4 and yes, we thank him for that. But lets move on and look forward instead of back all the time.

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  46. 'An agenda in the press....to make it appear liverpool's financial situation was much worse than it actually was'

    Liverpool ended up one day (that's 24 hours) from administration. The pressmen were doing their job, looking at the facts, not the company line.

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  47. Keane was brought and sold, take away the add ons he cost the club £5 mil, when you consider the wages of some frees it wasnt that big a loss and it wasnt his signing. lastly 2005 to 2010, CL, Fa Cup, Super cup winners, CL and League cup finalists, CL and Europa semi's, 2nd, 3rd, 3rd, 4th, 4th, every season CL football. Its the best 5 years we have had out of the last 25 years so give the man the respect he deserves! Even his shit final season was better than what has followed.

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  48. It is probably easier to lay the blame at someone else's door, in this case Parry, than to accept that even the person some people adore has had his faults and made massive mistakes. History is repeating itself concerning this.

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  49. Why does that lead to us paying a vastly inflated fee for the player?

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  50. Hm, to put it into Benítez' words, he wanted a table, a lamp, a sofa, new curtains and a wing chair, but has only got a sofa and a lamp. Poor sod.

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  51. Number 1 in Europe! Enough about your moaning about Rafa already!

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  52. Kudos to that achievement! The players Houllier assembled weren't all that bad then.

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  53. Me too. I think it would be even worse. No-body would have wanted to buy the club with him at the helm. That doesn't mean that I think that any of the managers we have had since are/were yes-men. Benítez can be quite a prima donna. His ego seems to be a bit inflated at times.

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  54. Torres and Ngog were our strikeforce! Winning the lge with his squad would have been a footballing miracle!

    Also can everyone get over the Alonso sale. Xabi is propably one of my all time favourite players but he had a poor penultimate season, hear Rafa wanted to flog him and then played out of his skin to promote his sale to Madrid....

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  55. I agree with you that, at certain times, Benítez was far superior to anything the club has had since the early 80's, BUT then he's reached his sell-by date. I personally think that he fell too much in love with himself, but that's pure speculation.

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  56. 'One day from administration'is another myth.




    Sent from Samsung Galaxy Note

    -------- Original message --------
    Subject: [liverpoolkop] Re: 'It was impossible!' - Angry Benitez blasts H+G over 3 failed signings... | Liverpool-Kop.com

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  57. Rafa should just stuff it and move on. We have bigger worries for now as to how this season is going to unfold. We have a duty to come together and support the club now.

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  58. Still writing these 'Rafa was rubbish, Hicks was good' articles I see...

    Never knew you were in contact with Hicks though. Makes sense now. Must have made you feel pretty important at the time?

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  59. You miss Benítez? He lives on the Wirral. You are free to visit him any time.

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  60. There is no such thing as a free transfer. While no transfer fee has to be paid to the "selling" club, the player's agent will still demand a substantial fee, the wage demand of the player is likely to be steeper and there may as well be a signing fee for the player himself, which, too, may be steeper than in cases when an actual transfer fee has to be paid. Not to mention that even a "free transfer" demands his weekly wages over the duration of his contract.

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  61. Who's laid the foundation for our current academy by changing the entire youth system, rather scrapping it and building up a new one from scratch? I'll give you a hint: Who's let the Reds out? Hou-, Hou-, Hou....... Credit were credit is due.

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  62. Fact is that we would have slipped into administration as no-one would have been willing to buy the club with him still our manager. So you may be right. We may be top 4, in the Championship.

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  63. TBH if the Aquilani transfer had worked out and we got Jovetic, I have no doubt we'd have pushed on, got more than 4 more points and been in with a shout. Alas, it wasn't meant to be.

    I'm interested to see how FSG are with the pursestrings come January and next summer. They need to back Rodgers, and in fairness should have done this summer as if they insisting on buying youth, the sooner they're in learning the system and gaining EPL experience the better, so we can be a force in years to come.

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  64. If prima donna with a self inflated ego means "someone who was willing to fight for the club and all its represents aginast the previous owners" then I suppose this is right. Maybe only the right type of people would have wanted to buy the club with him at the helm. He was one of us and understood the club inside out.

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  65. Jovetic and his Fiorentina mates knocked us out the Champions League that season and you guessed it, Jovetic got both when we lost away in Florence. And as for saying we spent £37M, we received £30m for Alonso and needed to replace him, £4m for Arbeloa and needed a right back, Dossena went, so did Voronin and Pennant, Hyypia also left so we needed a centre half. That summer, we spent less money than we received, Benitez, having been told he had £20m to spend plus whatever he made was then told that his budget had gone on contractual renewals. Purslow screwed Rafa that summer by not being honest with him, who knows what would have happened had Benitez been able to buy the players he wanted, he may have failed, he may have succeeded but he was not even given the chance to go for the title.

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  66. absolute tosser.
    This blert was paid to defend H&G- right til the end.
    And attacked SOS
    Also works for the Glazers
    No reds fan should read his filth!

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  67. Jamie K needs a life

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  68. The contention about being promised £20m was confirmed by Purslow and is not speculation. The Johnson deal is not made up, Pompey were in dire financial straits then, plus Chelsea offered £17m for him, we had to match that if we wanted him and were able to offset it against money still owed. Alonso went for £30m, confirmed by Guillem Ballague on numerous occasions, the Keane money was not re-invested. You then make reference to an article that you wrote as proof with 'snippets' of accounts. That is like saying Berezovsky must be right because what he told the Court was the truth.

    Back to your old ways Kanwar. Rafa was one of the best manager's this club has had. Qualification for the Champions League a regular occurence, including progressing to the later stages in most seasons, competitive in the league. We are a long way from that now and I would have trusted Benitez with £100m more so than I would have Dalglish on reflection. £20m for Torres, £10m for Alonso, £18m for Mascherano, we spent that on Adam, Downing and Henderson.

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  69. Liverpool had no credit at all available to them before the takeover, i have a friend who works for a major credit checking company who ran checks on the club and its many holding companies and nobody would give the club credit for anything. This is what happens before administration, whether it was one day or not is another matter but it was a very real threat.

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  70. At the time, there was an agenda in the press- led by Liverpool based journalists, that our financial state was worse than it was????????? Are you kidding me with this statement????????

    We were 24 HOURS FROM ADMINISTRATION!!! We had to go to Court to have the club sold and the debt paid off! The bank called in their loan Kanwar and you think that these Liverpool based journalists had an agenda???? These Liverpool based journalists, of which I assume you mean Tony Barrett, Rory Smith and Tony Evans are given information from within the club. They are far more connected than you who was fed a party line by a pure liar. Hicks has shown himself to be a liar in Court, this 'epic swindle' he talks about, was a bunch of lies. Hicks fed you a party line, you took it hook line and sinker.


    ‘I do not trust your clients,” the judge (Mr Justice Smith) today told British lawyers representing Mr Hicks and Mr Gillett in the current High Court litigation.
    ‘(They) have demonstrated... that if it suits them they will abuse the process.’


    'Mr Justice Peter Smith explained an American lawyer representing the duo had twice misled an American court in 2010 after the sale.'

    If someone is prepared to lie to court, they are probably prepared to lie to a gullible journalist who is looking simply to create controversy.

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  71. i am better than him,defensively!

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  72. So Jk you really believe that they told you the truth about where the clubs finance's were, at that time, let me tell you that no business man will tell you jack shit about their finance's i don't care who you think you are. I don't care if we all think that H&G owed it to us and that we deserved to know, the truth of the matter is they owned the club at the time and they really do not need to tell you shit, you heard what they wanted you to hear and maybe because you controlled one of the many LFC site's that the fans enter to find out what is happening.
    On a different note as for you saying you wouldn't really have a problem with Rafa coming back, what a crock of shit when we were looking at managers at the start some of your posters called for him to come back and you were totally against the idea and no i'm not going to find the comments because i know what i read.
    The truth is he was good for us, players wanted to play for him, he made us competitive in europe, and lets not forget the Academy, from what i am reading that is getting dismantled, great news for the future, as much as he had his faults, the good outweighed the bad and with the money that KD had we would be at the top right now and thats what i know not what i have been told.

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  73. we paid about 5million for him they owed us about 10 if we had not signed him we would have got peanuts of portsmouth other clubs were willing to spend 12to15 million on him but the yanks acctualy moved quick and tied up a deal before they went bust

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  74. Yes, right. Every one of Hicks' figures was later confirmed by the club accounts. I suppose they were they false too?

    You are wrong.

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  75. No, it means that he had fights with the board at Valencia and Inter, too, AND washed the dirty linen in public repeatedly.

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  76. Still writing these 'Rafa was rubbish, Hicks was good' articles I see...

    Never knew you were in contact with Hicks though. Makes sense now. Must have made you feel pretty important at the time?

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  77. having no credit available does not mean imminent administration. The club was always going to be sold, and there was never any real danger of administration. That is a media myth perpetuated by the likes of Purslow, who had a vested interest in making the club's finances seem dire. It got the fans onside, and created sympathy and support for the club, and proceeded in demonising H+G even more.

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  78. Your simplistic summation of this article is totally wrong, but I can't be bothered to argue the point.

    And 'made me feel important'? Do me a favour. Why would it make me feel important? Not in the slightest; that's not how I think. You'd have to be have a pretty empty life for such things to make you feel important, and I do not.

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  79. Jaimie, firstly thanks for all your efforts with this forum - you are clearly a passionate red. You do seem a little naive about Hicks, his motive and using his information to evidence your points. It's like God asking Hitler about the Holocaust when trying to get through the Pearly Gates. Hitler's hardly like to say "yeah - you've got me there Guv." G&H were crooks. The sale of the club at the end showed that.

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  80. approx 10 million was still owed by pompey regarding Crouch so 7 million was needed to bring in Glen it was only 5 million initial payment of aquilani and soto was 1 million
    not to dissagree with you about the viability of Aquilani or indeed the price of both him and Glen just highlighting that the funds were not there to purchase the other players.
    Rafa made some very costly mistakes but you cannot take away the fact he was working under dire circumstances which nearly put the club out of business and yet we were still a massive force on the field.
    our fall from such a height is frightening and as a club we are still reeling from that love him or hate him he has reigned over our most successfull era in 20 years during arguably the clubs most turmultous times also.

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  81. Do you have anything to back that up, like, the clubs accounts and proof that other clubs were willing to pay so much money for him?

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  82. Really? I was not aware of this. Kind of cool. Even now there are some journalists saying there is a crisis at Anfield etc...if we win 3 games in a trot they will say we're going to win the league. Pathetic if you ask me.

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  83. “You never know,” he said slowly. “Football is a funny game. The plan was for Barry to play on the left and feed the ball to Robbie Keane, who would play up front with Fernando Torres. This blueprint had to be scrapped. The collateral damage was Keane, who signed from Tottenham Hotspur before the Barry deal had been done.

    “When we wanted to sign Barry, we were sure we were signing a good player with a very good mentality and the quality to play in the Premier League. The priority was Barry, then Keane.”

    http://www.lfchistory.net/Articles/Article/2846

    And if you'll turn me to see those videos of Rafa speaking, I will only say that I don't know why you keep giving more weight to one interview than the other.

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  84. Shame our top scorer in europe that season was garcia.

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  85. Yeah I'm sure we will have David Silva and Cazorla as well by now and Torres will still br banging them in.

    Purslow was a snake and the funds were sapped by the crippling interest rates which even got the banks involved.

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  86. Can we win the next game!?!?!?! So badly need a win!

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  87. Best LFC manager in my lifetime! Can only thank him for what he has done for the club. Academy reaping the rewards now, all thanks to Rafa :) !!!!

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  88. We didn't so much 'achieve' second place that season, as throw away the title. We were top of the league for a lot of that season and then in December (we were five points clear) came the infamous rant...
    That April we started to leak goals horrendously as well - there were a succession of high scoring draws over the course of a couple of weeks, including back to back 4-4s. To score 4 and not win is bad tactics. To concede four, two games on the trot, is bad preparation/concentration.
    Not winning the title that season was down to Benitez and the players... and let's not forget, he let a striker go in the January window ,that we'd only signed five months previous, without ensuring we had an adequate replacement lined up...
    ...and they say lightening never strikes twice!

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  89. You cannot run a business without being able to purchase things on credit unless you have the money in the bank which they did not. Liverpool did not have any cashflow. Liverpool FC would not have been able to pay its bills, this is what leads to administration. I ignored all the media figures but my source is genuine.

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  90. now we blame fsg and/or br for not having good striker in line to replace carrol, but our biggest mistake was not having good menager to replace benitez. roy is a small club menager and he made us(players and supporters) feel like we are in a small club. he was our biggest mistake

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  91. i dont understand why Rafa's critics keep trying to beat him with the stick called glen johnson and aqua. He had to buy someone to replace Xabi, who had been sold, so getting aqua for 12 mill cheaper seemed to be good business at the time. Glen johnson is a favourite player for most people outside of england who support liverpool. The guys skills are incredible. he would be the closest thing england have to a brazilian.
    Why is the purchase of glen johnson always portrayed as a crazy signiing. If anything, he has become a stalwart for us, and I know many many people see it this way outside of the blinkered crew in england who seem to hate any kind of attacking zeal from a defender.

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  92. plus two of rafa's three last buys for the club if im not mistaken, included: Shelvey, Sterling and Jovanovic. 2 out of 3 aint bad, and who knows what would have happend to Jova if it was Rafa he played for.

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  93. Why is that a shame? Some of Benítez early signings, namely Alonso and Garcia, were amongst my favourite players and I still adore Alonso to the present day.

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  94. Even Alex Ferguson has made a lot of failures in the transfer market, four I can think of being Diego Forlan, Juan Sebastian Veron, the replacement for Schmeichel, Massimo Taibi and the replacement for Roy Keane, Eric Djemba-Djemba. These were not the only blunders he made, Arsene Wenger has also made a number of transfer blunders, but Rafa gets the stick by the media. Whether he spent a lot of money that ended up being flops or not, if he was promised money to spend and they then reneged on that, then that means he was hard done by. We nearly win the league and they don't back him in the transfer market to push on for the title?

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  95. If Rafa Benitez would have been afforded the money, that Kenny and Comolli had been given, for transfers last season Imo we would have had a team, that would be challenging for the league this season. Rafa benitez would be too LFC, what Ferguson his for Man-u although i hate too admit old chewy gob, his a great manager nobody can deny it. Benitez would have become one of the all time greats, no doubt about it. So if Brenden dosen`t live upto our expectations, there is always the chance, of LFC bringing back, the most wanted manager, by most LFC supporters, throughout the world, Rafa Benitez. RedManFor44Years and counting.

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  96. Where is your proof/quotes, anything of that nature which would suggest that no-one would be willing to buy the club with Rafa as manager?

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  97. You are so right...if it wasn't for stevie g Liverpool would have been relegated especially the year we came second in the league...

    .imagine if stevie g hadn't scored the hatrick in the champs league final ..how would we have won

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  98. Kyriagkos was bought in as Rafa could not get Distin

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  99. We weren't sold to some oil-rich person. Isn't that proof enough?

    BTW, where is proof that Rafa's claims that he would have won the league, had he been able to buy this and that player? It rather proofs that he has a very high opinion of himself.

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  100. After the transfer window debacle we placed Arsenal, the mood amongst the players and the crowd was utter disbelief and it showed in the noise levels in the stands and in the performance by the players. The point i'm making is that when there is unrest behind the scenes, when in this case H&G where not seen to be backing Rafa it affected the dressing room. Rafa's last season was wrought with conflict, argument, press intrusion and all the other baggage that H&G brought with it, it was hardly surprising we failed to build on the excellent season before. Rafa made mistakes the same as every other top manager, but them mistakes where made worse by a board and ownership at war with everyone from the banks to the tea lady.

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  101. What have Ferguson and Wenger to do with Rafa? Were they once manager of our club? No! Are some of our supporters defending their transfer policy? No!

    BTW, if one managers buys a player that doesn't hack it, but still wins the league AND his club have the resources to go wrong for big money, then so be it. If a club has rather limited funds and hasn't been too successful (in the League), then it could do some severe damage to the club.

    Furthermore I really don't care whether or not the media give stick to Rafa. Who's taking the media circus serious anyway? I don't, apart from very few good newspapers.

    Houllier, too, came close to the league title, but, as life goes, he also fell because of his subsequent poor spending (Diouf for instance). Why oh why do some people still think that Rafa has to be treated different.

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  102. Yeah, maybe he struggles with the current ownership of football clubs, maybe he feels he should have more control as it is his head on the chopping block. Do you see that..? Do you see how, like many of us, he is frustrated with how the ownership of footballs clubs is ruining the game..?
    Do you see the work he and his family do on Merseyside..? and yet you feel the club would be worse of WITH him..? The only linen he washed in public was done in the best interest of the club - and I trust Rafa to make that judgement more than anyone else at the club in the G&H days and right now.

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  103. yes and he bought alonso who complimented gerrard, can you really say gerrard is the same player now? under benitez carragher and gerrard where awsome. he bought players that complimented each other!

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  104. Phil is correct with what he says,as is 5times.
    And you are wrong in most fans opinion the way you t alk of the signings of Johnson Aquilani & Kyrgiakos! Most certainly the latter two of these three were what he could bring in under the circumstances!
    All reminiscent of what's happening under the new regime!( or visa versa). In my opinion the REDS will not do any better with the new owners.

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  105. you're an idiot!! and you obviously know fuck all about Rafa or Liverpool FC

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  106. I don't think you properly read what OrginalChan wrote???
    THE TRUE FACT STANDS THAT 'PARRY' went out and bought Keane, NOT Benitez !

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  107. A case could be made that it was actually Gerrard that won us the Champs League, rather than Benitez. Also, it could be said that losing Alonso was the cause of a catastrophic 2009-2010 season.

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  108. oooh some one seems to have hit a nerve......?

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  109. Good article JK, my view of the H & G period was similar to the one presented here, i did feel that H & G were very much demonised and that most of the fan base were behind Rafa in his very public war with them....

    I was not one of those who took up arms against them though, for me it was simple, H & G were being blamed for Rafa's shortcomings and i think they wanted rid anyway.....sensing that trouble was no doubt on the horizon...which it was, and lets face it they were not alone either....

    It looked very much like a stale mate to me, with no winner just a club being mauled and driven into the ground by Owners Manager and Fan base alike....

    The only solution really IMO to actually benefit the Club.... and bring back some kind of stability..... was to get rid of Rafa and get rid of said owners.

    A sad state of affairs if ever there was one. Definitely a lot of buck passing by manager and a stubborn refusal to accept that HE could/should have done better with certain results...and player transfers etc, all was not how it was painted at the time nor what the revisionists ( Rafa being the orchestrater...) would have us believe.

    Fact that he is STILL sat on the sidelines.... constantly popping up with articles and now a book ffs...just goes to show why IMO he should not return to this Club at all, IF all that has passed....and im talking about the near collapse of our great club here.... has not taught Rafa that his ways do not fit in with the Liverpool Way then im afraid he's just not fit now nor probably ever to be considered worthwhile bringing back to the Club....

    I just cannot believe that he hasn't moved on yet....i mean what is he waiting for.....? just seems to stir up a load of old and buried debates about the problems etc that he encountered, the players he wanted to sign...etc. Jeez, this is why i have more respect for the likes of Roy Hodgson because he just picked himself up and got on with the business of being a football manager....something that Rafa seriously needs to do.

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  110. Well, yes, I see that. It is like that for all of us in everyday life. We go to work, but the owner of the company is calling the shots. If we complain about the treatment we get they tell us that if we don't like it we could go search another job. But us normal people don't get paid a fortune to do a job we don't necessarily like very much. Benítez is in a very privileged position. He get/got paid millions for turning his hobby into his job, and at the same time being adored by the masses. That isn't enough? He want's to tell the people who own the place what to do. I don't like football club owners in general, or company owners, but they put forward millions to buy a club/company or put in enormous effort to build it up from scratch. So, as much as I may not like it, the owners have the last say, in almost every walk of life, as it was them who've paid hundreds of millions for that privilege. Benítez, just like me, is simply an employee of a given club/company.

    If I had that much money as Benítez had, I too would invest it into projects that aim to better the life of those who are in need. Having said that, kudos to him for doing it, as many rich people don't do it. I don't contest that he is a nice, decent bloke overall.

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  111. Utter rubbish, bit like the claims in the article. As you say this whole site is designed to be negative about LFC, sounds like anti LFC. I don't remember any recent articles on Hodgson, or is he already damaged goods? No more damage to be done?

    Having no credit might not mean administration but having less money than you need to operate will certainly lead to admin if you cannot get credit.

    Sounds like your friendship with our worst ever owners has had an effect on any objectivity and im sure H&G never fed you any positive spin about themselves or the club, because we all know how truthful and honest the cowboys were.

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  112. Great Manager! Great Guy!

    http://www.skysports.com/​video/inline/​0,,12612_7305173,00.htmlSoccer AM - Rafa Benitez
    www.skysports.com

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  113. you are a tit kanwar he never like rafa but said the two yanks were great for the club so thats the type of person who has this site

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  114. Stop saying the rubbish that Gerrard won us the CL! Football is a team game and without Rafa fielding Hamann to release Gerrard, without Alonso and Smicer scoring the other 2 goals, without Dudek's heroic penalty save....Liverpool won't win the final!!!

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  115. you know what i mean

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  116. Stop making stupid comment...Gerrard do well mainly because of Alonso, Machesrano and Torres in the same team!!! Most important it is Rafa who plays 4-4-1-1 to unlock Gerrard's potential!

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  117. Gerrard scored hatrick in the CL final? Which CL final? Are you from Mars?

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  118. The cowboys were rightly demonized. Their strategy was to plunge money out of the club into their pockets until it went bankrupt. Similar to what the American owners are doing at united. The only difference is that Fergie is keeping his mouth shut so not to tarnish his legacy of success because he knows by the time that Man.UTD go bankrupt and he retires, he would still have the best players at his disposal.

    Think about it, similar to what H+G did at Liverpool when they bought us Torres, after a long wait, the Glazers have bought RVP and all of a sudden, the Man.UTD fans are happy again with how the club is being run. When Torres was bought, we were also given reassurances of how well the club was being run. Three years on, we finally discovered what time it was.

    These are all alienating tactics people in power such as politicians use to remove pressure from themselves. These help them get their fans' backing, thus ensuring they keep their power and dubious money-making schemes in check.

    One of the main reasons why I trust FSG is that they do not use these tactics a lot. They did use them in the beginning, but right now, as the transfer-deadline day demonstrated, they are willing to take unpopular decisions so as not to saddle the club with debt again.

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  119. You talk too much rubbish!!! Rafa won 2 La Liga, 1 UEFA, 1 ECLC, 1 Super Cup, 1 FA Cup....who the hell are you?

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  120. I don't agree with this article.

    Hicks and Gillette don't deserve credit for the work that had already begun before they came in. Their job would be finance, clearly they were not able to finance. It is not their fault they are not Arabs or Russians. They were just greedy americans who messed up all the hard work done. So blame can be placed at their door. I am not saying benitez is faultless but come on the improvement during his reign was clear each year. Then he had to start selling to buy, and it all started to go wrong.

    Whatever you say about benitez he is by far the best manager we have had since Kenny first left our club. Hopefully BR will do as good a job as Benitez. But Benitez had his way of doing things and was clearly not supported enough in the end, no one can deny that.

    Bottom line is rafa had us playing well in champ league and money was coming in, year in year out. He had 1 bad season and he publicly showed his dislike for big baby Alex ferguson and all the media turned against rafa. Top players could be attracted as we were offering champ league football but the funds ran out.

    Americans did not realise the value of Benitez and listening to him, they still think you have to pick up the ball and run with it.

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  121. The fact is you are nothing compared with Rafa!!

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  122. Nice comment. Debate like a grown up instead of having a school yard tantrum.

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  123. Even worse? Are you feeling ok? Only an American would not want to buy a club with Benitez at the helm, as they don't know the first thing about football. Anyone with any sense would realise that we had a good manager and a good squad that needs some improvement. Instead we got rid of the man and bought in wodgson and unsettled the club and players.

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  124. Jamie, Rafael is a very good manager. In terms of transfer mistakes they are no more than SAF's during the same period. His over all net spend kept the club in good shape and well with in budget. RB maintained our top CL status and l'pool became comptetive at the top pf the league. With the money chelsea and united had it makes even better reading for RB. I read an extract from his book where he indicated that he didnt want to sell alonso but budget restraints as well alonso's worry of the uncertainty surrounding the club contributed to Alonso leaving. Alonso actually confronted benitez. Ofcourse he wasnt perfect and you could criticise certain transfers and certain tactics but overall with his circumstances he had the team punching above their weight. your comments of him clearly indicate you do not like him. If your view of him was impartial then you'd hihglight his qualites as well as his acheivments, even though we never actually won the league under him.

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  125. Don't u know that stevie won us the final.....single handedly...they made a mistake in the goal scores it was stevie not smicer and alonso ...the other 10 players weren't even on the pitch...stevie single handedly took on milan ...

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  126. Jamie

    Please name me a player/manager/owners that you have rated as you seem to wollow in being confrotational

    When some people actually express valid opinions disagreeing with you, you try to belittle them or delete them

    Dont get high on your own supply me thinks

    JD

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  127. So are you to me.

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  128. And that alone justifies that whatever Houllier did for the club is ignored. If I get you right, Rafa is a god-like creature to you and everybody else is nothing. I don't agree with that, to be brutally honest with you. He, too, is only a human being, just like you an me. He has had the luck that he is good at something that gets very, very much publicity. I am good at other things. Those don't get much publicity unless you are one of very, very few extremely talented scientists.

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  129. Interesting, really. Who where those parties interested in buying the club. Rafa did a lot of good things while he was our manager, no doubt about it, but not all the things he did were that great. In the latter stages of his tenure he even did some very bad things. His time was up, regardless of who owned the club. He's had one job after he left us, and that didn't last that long, did it. Since then no-one touches him with a barge pole. How come the entire football world apart from our own In Rafa We Trust brigade avoids him? They all know nothing and you know it all, right. Ah yeah, Sampdoria wanted him, but they were to small for him. He claimed that they couldn't compete for trophies. A few years later he claims that he is surprised that he wasn't contacted by us. Well, I can't see us competing for the League as there are two clubs in our division with endless money to spend.

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  130. You are an obsessive Benitez hater for the same reason Oldham hated Fowler - to generate hits for your website and earn money from advertisers. You are discredited.

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  131. At long last Kanwar finally posts an article I actually agree with, or maybe my hate for what Benitez did to liverpool in his last few years in charge would make me agree with anyone who slags off Benitez

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  132. It was his bloody signing, Rafa is on record saying he wanted Keane.

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  133. Here are the facts, Rafa bought some crap players, but still managed to keep us in the top 4, until his last season. Now in my book, if you can buy crap and still out perform most other teams, you must be doing something right. in todays game, the skill of the manager is less important than the cash the club can spend.

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  134. the rumour going around at the time was that Rafa's spending was blocked AFTER the purchase of Glen Johnson and that he planned to purchase a striker (Jovetic?) and a central defender (Distin/Upson?) and not Kyrgiakos. Had he been given the full Alonso fee maye he would have purchased a midfielder other than Aquilani? I seem to remember the rumours had it he was after Javi Martinez from Bilbao? Possible...

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  135. What he said was that he wanted Keane but only with Barry. I don't know what his plan was but he envisaged the two combining. You'll find quotes to that effect.

    You should get your own facts straight before mocking others for not having their facts straight.

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  136. i think anyone would of wanted keane at that time in his career, he was a genius sometimes. keane let himself down and liverpool. not benitez

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  137. It a joke mate. At the comment directed towards it being Houlliers squad. People sometimes miss little things like that. Especially when trying to credit Houllier with the champ leagues trophy.

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  138. I dont love benitez but to say he is a crap manager is ridiculous. I agree with you adnan in the sense that managing liverpool wasnt easy. Also in the mirror or sun today rafa mentioned that xabi spoke to him before the standard leige game and said he didnt want to play. All i can say is if the budget strings werent tightened after the 08/09 season i reckon rafa would have still been challenging for the title today. For the people that think rafa is a crap manager then explain how else do you manage a team if the issues that G& H created.

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  139. If BR doesn't make progress In the next 3 years I would love Rafa to return.

    But we need to give BR a real go at it

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  140. Rafa raises legitimate points and JK has the benefit of hindsight. It's easy to say he should have signed players in a certain order to prioritise, but things don't work like that, especially if you are promised funds and players are about to board planes for a medical only to be told the deal is off.

    You plan when you are told the finance is in place, so do the deals you can first and then do the others. Soto was a last minute signing when funding was denied for other centre backs.

    We were let down badly by Hicks and Gillett in that summer. That was the summer they were found out as pretenders. I'm not saying we would have won the league but we would be in a much stronger position now. These days, we are years and years away of even thinking about the champions league and I hate that.

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  141. I don't agree with half the comments here. Benitez dragged the club by the scruff of the neck into the 21st century, the old boot room alongside the Americans we're kicking and screaming at every opportunity against that. The British media hounded Benitez because he wasnt British and the LFC fans with short memories failed to support the great strides that were taken prior to the 09 / 10 season. The man has won everything, he's young, he completely restricted everything from youth policy , to diet, he,made some crap signings and made some amazing signings he had a long term vision and was picking up trophies,along the way to fulfilling that vision. Presently, its all distant memory, as it was prior to Benitez. Brendan rodgers cannot be judged after 1 season never mind 3 games.

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  142. Quite laughable really. Agger, Alonso, Garcia, Reina, Kuyt, Torres etc contributed nothing then?

    Was it not Rafa who saw what Stevie could do and freed him up from central midfield (much to the dismay of Redknapp jnr) and he scored 23 goals in a season. Was it not Rafa who then saw his potential as a second striker with Torres?

    Also if you actually read the article Plank, you will see the extracts are from Rafa's book - and why should he shut up. He is telling people who want to know what happened.

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  143. Restructured not restricted. On my last comment. Sorry.

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  144. Some good points, not sure whether it was wholly right that H & G should have been demonised tbh, as i said, it looked to me that Rafa got caught up in his battle with them because they didnt want him as manager anymore......remember the link to Klinnsman etc..? Not sure if H & G were both of the same opinion re Rafa either, but i think they got a lot more than they bargained for....

    Rafa just put the bit between his teeth and off he went, taking much of the fan base with him, it became his mission but who knows if H & G actually wanted to strip the asset clean and send us into bankruptcy, we did have a fairly rich squad of players at the time, it certainly wasn't as bad as was being portrayed, well not to me anyway.

    I do agree with your point re FSG though, up to a point, they do seem much more clued up than H & G and less willing to saddle us with debt, clearly...

    The trouble we have atm is re adjusting our expectations...FSG feel that they/we have been hurt in last summers window..... and much of the fan base is still scarred/hurt from the heavy debt and empty promise period of H & G...

    In this respect neither fan's nor owners can be happy with where we are now at, its understandable, the rhetoric from Henry himself makes a lot of sense, so do the figures/stats re our spending as a Club for the last 20 years....

    Can't really argue with none of that, and in a way i can relate to the new set up re our playing style etc as well, its just that it represents the farewell of Kenny and all those dreams that some of us had....thats the hard part, in that respect i almost find myself in 2 minds really, i guess time will tell whether we are finally on the right track or not.

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  145. Major Misunderstanding10:48 pm, September 11, 2012

    I'm a Liverpool fan who dislikes Benitez.

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  146. I think you are missing the point with Johnson - we were close to winning the league in 2008-9, so the addition of a talented, attacking right-back was meant to take Liverpool that extra mile. The mistake of that year was the signing of Aquilani due to his injury problems - while the expectation that Lucas could fill the gap left by Alonso to play in tandem with Mascherano did not quite work out. At the same time, Rafa did bring in £30 million from Alonso alone and - at least as far as was reported in the papers that summer - was expecting to have a budget of £50 million to spend instead of the £35 million he actually spent. If your budget is reduced half-way through the transfer process, it becomes very difficult to manage.

    More importantly, Liverpool are still paying the price for letting Rafa go because of one bad season. He would have turned things round and we would be competing in the CL today if Rafa had remained at Liverpool - or if he had been brought back once Roy was shown the exit.

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  147. Deletw


    Sent from Samsung Galaxy Note

    -------- Original message --------
    Subject: [liverpoolkop] Re: 'It was impossible!' - Angry Benitez blasts H+G over 3 failed signings... | Liverpool-Kop.com

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  148. I think initially, the cowboys wanted the club to move forward so that they can have a steady stream of income from this club. However, once some mistakes were committed, (most probably regarding building the new stadium and some transfers which went wrong) it seemed as if they only cared about cutting their losses by maximising their profits at the club's expense.

    There were rumours of unrest even during the season were we finished second, suggesting that even when things (football wise) were on the ascent, the club was going down. During Rafa's last year, when the good results stopped coming, shit hit the fan and we know what followed.

    I think now we are on the right track. FSG's strict adherence to Uefa's financial fair-play rules and their policy which seeks to minimize losses and unnecessary risks, means that it will take some time before we become competitive again. We can't accelerate development like Chelsea and City did. It took City about fours years of heavy spending to win the title only on goal difference. They overspent on quite a lot of players but won the league and the FA Cup. In just under two years under FSG, we have won the Carling Cup but our league form should have been better. Compared to when the Sheiks took over Man.City, FSG found a squad with better technical quality but also an ageing one with over-inflated wage-bills. Similarly,

    I feel they both over-spent (Robinho & Carroll) although that's where the similarities end. FSG's net spend compared to the Sheik's net spend is incomparable. While this might depress some LFC fans, I believe it is a healthy balance which benefits the club because it demonstrates that we are not spending beyond our measures. I feel that he summer transfer window of 2011 was a bigger disappointment than the one of 2012 because while we got less players, it seemed like we have got much better value for money. As the tables Jamie likes to quote show, getting the best value for money when it comes to transfers and wages is the way forward long-term. At least, if we over-spend a lot last season, the wage packages weren't inflated.

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  149. To be fair, maybe we should ask H&G to comment on this matter

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  150. Oh right Martin, Stevie done nothing until Rafa unleashed him, ha ha, he was an unknown(Chelsea asked him to just name his price). Almost single handedly Stevie won us the CL, in Istanbul. You mention Agger, Alonso, Garcia, Reina, Kuyt, Torres etc, I must have forgot about them, so maybe you can list exactly what Rafa won with those players in his team, I cannot seem to remember, all those Trophies.

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  151. Well, I actually didn't try to credit Houllier with the Champions League Trophy, but generally I want to stress that we've had a manager before Rafa, too, and that this particular manager also did a lot of good things for our club, like modernising our entire youth set-up. I know that people sometimes miss, erm, little things like that, especially when trying to heap the praise on Rafael Benítez.

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  152. The best managers in my lifetime were Bill Shankly and Bob Paisley. Thanks for making us a great club!

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  153. I, too, like what Johnson offers when going forward, but 17 million pounds and lacking defensively don't make that up.

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  154. If Rafa had managed Jovanovic he surely would have been a world-beater, eh. That's why he now plays in a really strong league. Yogi1, Jova has found his level in Belgium, no doubt about that. He was, unfortunately, out of his depth in the Prem.

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  155. He didn't keep us in the top four in his FIRST season. How short memories are.

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  156. nearly totally agree...so he infact spent little over £13million initially that summer, not £37. with the crouch money still owed johnson was a great signing, espesially as we could not afford the likes of silva or mata on the wing rafa decided to get his attacking width from full back where arbeloa was a much better defender admittedly, but managers have to take that sort of gamble. aquilani was another gamble, but at the basic cost without the addons a gamble worth taking, yes he was not a good player for us that year, but its not rafas fault that both woy and kenny saw it fit to loan this guy out after two relatively good pre seasons since then. the £1mil signing of soto rafa had said he was a defender with champions league experience available for the money they had left to spend. hicks and gillet are to blame, you cannot finish second then only pay £13mil to finish higher.....luck played its part a bit too, was that not the year both torres and stevie only started 7 games together due to injuries? im not saying rafas poo dont smell, but it dosnt smell anywhere near as much as your suggesting jaimie

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  157. I never said you did. It was a generilisation of a section of fans. Who still to this day give Houllier credit for winning the champs league.

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  158. Uhm, well, I haven't come across that particular section of our fans, but there surely is a section of our fans who give credit to Rafa for everything good that has happened at our club in recent history (some of which is actually merited), but nothing of the bad stuff.

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  159. Rafa only wanted him if they got Barry. I think Rafa & Parry let him down, not Keane. Not much you can do as a player when there is a power struggle between egos (Rafa, G&H, Parry) as well as the manager only wanted you if they got another player as well. As Rafa said, because they didn't get Barry, Keane became 'collateral damage'. That is what Rafa said, 'collateral damage', i.e., he was fucked without Barry in Rafa's eyes. The moment Barry didn't come, Keane was screwed from thereon. Rafa has made it clear that he only wanted Keane if Barry came as well. Without Barry, Rafa does strike me as the type of manager who can be narrow minded & egotistical (like most good managers are), and cast aside a player all because he didn't get another player. Which is clear by Rafa's treatment of him during his time at the club and his quick sale. The lad got 5 goals and 4 assists in 16 starts and 3 sub appearances for us, that is a solid return, just under one in two goal/assist ratio which is good for a new player but if a egotistical manager doesn't want you (without precious Barry that is), your out, regardless of what you do. I don't see how a player who has almost 1 in 2 contribution of goals/assists in the first half of a season at a new club had let himself down.



    The persons that let the club down over this situation was Rafa, Parry and possibly the owners, not Keane. Hence, Rafa saying 'collateral damage'.

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  160. embarrassing coment there with no respect for the whole liverpool team. fact is 2nd half everyone of those players played there skins out. from our left back saving the ball of the line to hamman in the middle. not forgetting biscans goals in the other rounds.

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  161. jamie asks hicks whether he still has those liverpool ornaments around his house?lol

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  162. johnson was an unnecessary purchase!!!
    he is definitely one of the best wing man we got at the moment..manager should use him as a right wing rather than a full back

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  163. In his first years Rafa wanted an unknown striker called David Villa - and a brazilian right back called Daniel Alves. Both were blocked as not good enough and to pricy (and Parry wasn't able to conclude a deal) as far a rumours went on. This lead to Rafa buying Josemi/Kronkamp (and later landed Arbeloa on a very cheap deal) and Morientes.
    Imagine if he had been given the money for those two - then nobody would blame him for buying the very reliable Glen Johnson - or Ngog (a trainee from PSGermain, whom they didn't want).

    We can throw mud after some persons - make stories our of the rumours - take the stories from a biased one-sided perspective - but the fact is, that there are so many unknown elements in just hiring a player, that we cannot just blame one, two or three persons here. Imagine if Alonsos wife did want to go home to Spain, but he didn't tell anyone, so he made other issues important to find a cause for leaving. Imagine Barry has a cousin at Merseyside, who he cannot stand - so he doesn't want to come here to have this lad visit him every second day.

    JK - you do some great articles - have you biases - and sometimes your articles create more debate than necessary. But at least your site has visitors - and we keep coming, so keep writing.

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  164. Yes, unfortunately we couldn' afford 20m+ wingers and needed to increase the homegrown ratio hence the Johnson purchase. Had Rafa gotten the green light to get Daniel Alves who eventually went to Barca we prob wouldn't have forked out such a fortune.

    Alves was priced 12 million at the time I believe. Anyway Rafa identified Johnson as a good attacking full back. He didn't decide the wages or the transfer fee which sky rocketed thanks to Chelsea's involvement. With Portsmouth still owing 8m for Crouch when they were in a financial mess helped us get our man but for more than we had to.
    From Rafa's view point he needed to find a good Fullback that would replace Arbeloa. That's it.

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  165. So you think H&G were running the Club well? Promising a new stadium and wasting millions on drafting designs without a spade in the ground, flying first class to and fro with their sons on Liverpool accounts, meanwhile undermining Rafa by talking to Klinsmann and crippling the Club with interest payments that got the banks involved?!

    If that wasn't bad enough we had two owners who couldn't see eye to eye and had to suffer being the object of ridicule hanging all our dirty laundry in public.

    Do you think the fans of Hick's other franchises are happy with him? Surely not all of us can be wrong.

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  166. Maybe administration was a touch dramatic but don't deny that out transfer funds were dwindling at an alarming rate deapite CL qualification and a net spend that was hardly excessive.

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  167. To win the league then would arguably have been tougher! He was up against a much stronger United team with Ronaldo, Vidic, Rooney and Van Der Sar, Chelsea had a great manager in Mourinho backed by Roubles and even Arsenal had more quality.

    City has strengthened and so have Spurs and New C but there is no denying that the EPL top 4 have weakened for the past few seasons to the extent that fewer teams are getting to the
    latter rounds of Europeam competition. Chelsea's win last season was an exception to the norm.

    Arsenal had a disastrous start last season in the league but still managed top 4, United with their avg squad only just missed out on the title.

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  168. Well said. It's hardly Rafa's fault that Liverpool's transfer negotiators were taken for a ride with regards to Aquilani and Johnson. Anyway, Rafa made a great deal of profit on certain players he brought in which can hardly be said with the players we have offloaded recently at a significant loss.

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  169. Wonderfully constructive comment.
    I suppose you are happy with the mediocrity that is out situation now then Jog on

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  170. As if they will tell the truth. They're no saints.
    They saddled the Club in debt, from their loans and tried to sell us for 700 million or whatever they valued us at.

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  171. Yeah because we were a little preoccupied with the Champions League and had to overhaul a team with the likes of Diao, Diouf, LeTallec, Biscan, Traore, Smicer and an Owen less strikeforce.

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  172. Believe it or not Rafa's scouts were quick off the mark and had we acted faster in the market we may have secured the likes of Daniel Alves, Vidic, Evra (although that would make me cringe now), Eto'o, David Silva, Villa, Mata, Jovetic and Radamel Falcao.
    I'm pretty sure it was Houllier who was looking at Ronaldo at one stage as well for 12m.

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  173. I am in no doubt at all that those, who want to portray Rafa as the one and only will always find ways to highlight his undoubted achievements while at the same time at least diminishing the achievements of other managers and ignoring the negative aspects and decline of Mr. Benítez' time at our club.

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  174. If one wanted to give everything that Rafa did a positive spin, then this is the way to put it. One could also argue that Rafa has spent 17m on a right-back and then complained that there was no money for further signings.

    Just to make it clear, I have nothing against Rafa, I thank him for all the positive things he did an achieve while at our club, but I object to the opinion held by some people that he did nothing wrong, is not to blame for anything at all and that we would be world-beaters right now if he were still at the helm. During his time at our club I saw a decline, I found that, at times, the stubbornness he displayed in order to prove points (like needing reinforcements in certain positions) has cost us not only points in the league, but maybe even another Champions League trophy. I know that you won't agree with that, probably never will, but these were observations I've made at the time. Therefore I don't want this man back at the club I surely don't love less than you do.

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  175. While Rafa deserve credit for the champs league, I must stress that it was Houllier who groom Gerrard. So Houllier should have some rights to claim part of the credit. 2005 triumph was not exclusively belong to Rafa.

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  176. And since he keep playing well under Jose Mourinho and Vincente Del Bosque..........

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  177. Rafa was gone after 1 bad season. Alonso was to be sold after 1 bad season. Kenny Dalglish was gone after 1 bad season. Andy Caroll was gone after 1 bad season. Gerard Houllier was gone after 1 bad season.....anyone will lose their jobs if they don't perform. FACT OF LIFE!

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  178. One of jamies other names7:13 am, September 15, 2012

    Hi Jk

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  179. Anteater = Jamie Kanwar

    (benitez hater & hicks brown-noser)

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  180. he signed Glen Johnson in June 2009, 12 months after asking for transfer funds, 12 months after the start of the 2008/09 season. Fact.

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