30 Nov 2012

'I'm a bad coach' - LFC hero slams 'stupid' errors that could lead to sack...

With only three wins in thirteen games, Hoffenheim are in the midst of their worst ever start to a Bundesliga season, and there is an increasing possibility that their manager - popular ex-Liverpool right back Markus Babbel - could be dumped on the scrapheap before Christmas.

A 2-1 defeat home defeat to Sami Hyypia's Bayer Leverkusen at weekend left the German club languishing in the relegation zone, and Babbel accepts that things are looking pretty dire for him at the moment.

In his post-match press conference, the crestfallen boss bemoaned the 'stupid' individual mistakes of his players, and delivered a sobering assessment of his own position. He told Reporters:

"I know the business; I've been around long enough. Either you are a good coach or a bad coach, and right now I'm a bad coach...and judgements are quick to be made when the results are poor"

Like Liverpool, Hoffenheim have only three wins after thirteen league games, but instead of seven defeats like Babbel's team, the Reds have seven draws, giving Rodgers' team sixteen points, which is only four more points overall than the German club.

That's not such a major difference, and without Luis Suarez's goals this season, Liverpool would be in an unthinkable position in the league, and Rodgers would probably be under severe pressure, just like Babbel.

In an interview with Bild in July, Babbel candidly revealed that his ultimate goal is to become the manager of Liverpool. He said:

"It's been a dream of mine to someday become the manager of Liverpool FC. The city, the fans and of course the club are great. I'm 39 and hopefully have years of coaching ahead of me, but I need to be able to demonstrate management success. Of course, all of this is still quite far away, but I think about it daily".

Babbel and Rodgers have much in common:

* They're both 39 years old.
* They both have 5 years of management experience.
* They've learned their trade managing smaller clubs.
* Both led their teams to promotion in the 2010-11 season.

When it comes career win percentages, Babbel (47%) is ahead of Rodgers (41%) right now, but Rodgers' teams clearly play the better football.

It's a shame to see ex-Reds struggling, and I'm sure Sami Hyypia didn't enjoy sending his former team-mate crashing into the relegation zone. Despite the dire situation, Babbel is confident that he can turn things around:

"The results are poor, but my team are not dead - they are alive, only they are failing to reward themselves. Having potential is one thing, but showing this quality on the field is another"

Let's hope that Rodgers is not making similar statements at the end of January. Liverpool recently went 8-games unbeaten in the league, but this time last year, Kenny Dalglish had also just presided over an 8-game unbeaten streak, and we all know what happened after that.

Jaimie Kanwar


  1. Lovely article Jamie.

    Hopefully we can turn our fortunes around and bring one or two players next month. And I don't mean Jeffren lol

  2. Good article and a good comparison, We have been linked with Oscar Cardozo again just wanted to ask your opinions on him , would prefer him At LFC over Sturridge any day

  3. "Without Luis Suarez's goals..." is such an idiotic statement. Without Van Persie's goals Utd would be 13th.

    Now, do you actually believe that Utd would be down in 13th if they hadn't signed Van Persie? Of course not.

    Same goes for Suarez and his goals. Extrapolating out the same argument you could say that without Joe Hart, Manchester City would be bottom of the table as every shot on target would have gone in. Complete rubbish, of course, as it takes no account of the fact that "someone" would have replaced him in goal.

    Liverpool are short of strikers, certainly, but to suggest that without Suarez no-one at all would have scored any of those chances..? Utter nonsense - Shelvey for example has played one match up front as a sole striker and has a 100% strike rate.

    I like this site, Jamie, I really do. I appreciate the fact that it offers a viewpoint different from the fansite mainstream. It's refreshing. But if you can't think of anything intelligent to write then please just step away from the keyboard.

  4. And if you post anything again that contains derogatory comments then you will be banned. If you can't make your points without hurling insults then don't bother at all.

    It is not an idiotic statement at all, it is an irrefutable fact. You are just reading too much into it. I did not say 'Without Suarez's goals, which no one else on the planet could've scored'.

    The underlying point is that LFC are relying on Suarez's goals way too much; I think that is obvious.

  5. friend i don't know what alternate universe you are currently living in but in the one most people live in Liverpool FC's attack can mostly be defined by just one man this season Luis Suarez. He has scored 10 goals and the next highest scorer of goals in the whole team is non other than Steven Gerrard who has two goals with one being an own goal from a Gerrard shot that was deflected off a defender. It is good that you are loyal to your club buy you need a healthy dose of reality. If you are not aware of the fact LIVERPOOL HAS A GOAL SCORING CRISIS. Which is why we have been linked to any available striker worth a decent sum. We are looking to buy a goal monster in January.

    In the case of United maybe you haven't caught their games lately they have goal scorers in Rooney and Chicharito as well as Van Persie. Chicarito has been so effective lately in scoring goals he has been called "The super sub."

    Yeah Suarez is keeping us up and we need a striker for whom scoring comes as easy as breathing.

  6. I still cant understand how Liverpool let Carrol out on loan before signing someone else.This mistake has certainly cost Liverpool so far this season.

  7. Personally, I thought my comment was reasonable and thorough, succinct and certainly not derogatory. I'm a professional journalist, although I do not work in sport, and I think I have sufficient understanding of my craft to be able to offer a critique when another journalist makes a sweeping statement which is at odds with common sense. All in my opinion, of course.

    I wan't concerned with what you didn't say; only with what you did. If the only opinion which is allowed is yours, it begs the question why have a comments section at all?

    You can ban me if you wish. It won't spoil my day, only my opinion of you.

  8. Hi chib,

    I can assure you I'm in the same universe as everyone else and I'm aware of all of the arguments in favour of the points which you make. However, I disagree on one area alone.

    Suarez is our top goalscorer because he is playing as a lone striker. It's obvious that he's going to be scoring the vast majority of our goals. If Suarez wasn't playing, through either injury or suspension, then he would be replaced in that position probably by Shelvey and possibly by Yesil or Morgan. The onus on scoring would then fall to him.

    We are short of strikers, a point I made in my original reply, but I simply cannot accept that without Suarez we would not have scored at all. They may not be as clinical as Suarez, true, but they would have scored a number of goals. As I pointed out, Shelvey in that role has a scored one, played one record.

    Therefore any arguments which suggest that without Suarez we would be rooted to the foot of the table are clearly both a) unprovable and b) unlikely.

    Very clearly we do need more re-inforcements in the striker department. In my opinion, however, to suggest that we would be in the relegation zone without him is speculative and nonsensical.

  9. Fantastic response, at long last Mr "I will ban you" has found his match.

  10. Whether you are a journalist or not is irrelevant. Read the comment policy (floating on the left of the page) - You made derogatory comments about my opinion on two separate occasions. I don't take it personally in the slightest, but it's a matter of principle. This site is for civil debate, not hurling insults. Attack the argument, not the person - that is a hallmark of civil discussion. I don't care how compelling the argument is, if you can't get your point across without resorting to playground tactics then I'm not interested.

    Just because there is a comments sections doesn't mean people have the right to just post whatever insulting crap they like. If that was the case, this site would be like most football forums, i.e. a cesspool of abuse and insults. I don't want that, and neither do the regular visitors to this site.

    People disagree with me every day; 99% of the 150,000 comments on this site disagree with me, and I have no problem with that, as long as disagreement is done in a civil manner.

    I'm trying to create a forum for people to express whatever view they like about football without having idiots belittling their views, and anyone who can't get behind that is not welcome on this site.

    Your views are welcome here, but if you can't express them without sniping, then please go elsewhere.

    There is nothing unfair about the comment policy, it simply aspires to one of the fundamental principles of mutual respect, i.e. treat others as you would wish to be treated.

  11. He's done you Jamie, he's done you.

  12. And yet three paragraphs from the end of this you comment upon "...idiots belittling their views" which, I assume, is directed at me and which is the same insult used in a somewhat stronger context that that which I used it as I referred to an "idiotic statement" and you are referring to me, directly.

    All I am pointing out is that it is a very fine line you have drawn for everybody else and yet it is one which you yourself inadvertantly cross from time to time.

    I welcome your invitation to post here in the future, I apologise for any offence caused, and I look forward to the consistant application of the posting guidelines in the future.

  13. That comment is referencing a group of people, not you individually, and those people to which I refer are now banned.

  14. Man United have genuine alternatives to score goals e.g., they could push Rooney up front from his current midfield role and he actually has some pedigree in scoring goals, rather than some talented but raw teenager that has barely any previous as a striker at senior level and whose sole appearance as a LFC striker is in the Europa League against a Swiss side. We don't at the moment have genuine alternatives. So it is hardly unreasonable or idiotic to believe we would be a lot of worse off if Suarez was injured or banned, especially when there is no one else in the squad that has scored more than 1 PL goal this season. On top of the lack of strikers, we have had big problems in getting goals from midfield, not just this season but last season as well. So what if Suarez is the lone striker, doesn't mean attacking midfielders don't have the responsibility to score goals too. Chelsea are short of strikers yet their attack midfielders chip in with goals to mask that (to a certain extent, as cracks starting to appear maybe) but we don't have that either. The likes of City and United can genuinely be hopeful about their alternatives to when their best striker doesn't play (as they have Dzeko/Chicarito/Rooney, etc), I can't say the same about us. Thirdly, some of the goals he has scored has been mostly down to him and can't see any other forward we have that has anywhere near that proven ability to muster up some of those goals. Him and Sterling have been key.

    Based on shortage of strikers and impotent attacking midfielders, it is hardly idiotic to be pessimistic about what would happen if Suarez was injured or banned. It maybe speculative but hardly unreasonable speculation.

  15. I hear you mate. As far back as i can remember Liverpool has always utilized one main striker up front mostly. Liverpool is a club that doesn't do 4-4-2 formation at least not in recent history when we had more than two senior strikers.

    Yes Suarez is scoring a lot of goals not just because is the lone stiker but because he offers the most penetrative play on the team. While most of the Liverpool squad for most part do not like to run at the defense directly and are not known for their ball handling skills Suarez gets off on running at defenses. He plays like he has no regard for what happens to his body physically. He seem almost maniacal as he runs into defenses drawing defenses out and creating spaces for his teammates in the same process. No other player on the team provides as much penetration as Luis Suarez. No one has taken as many shots as Luis Suarez and no one has a better technical touch on the ball than Luis Suarez.

    Rodgers has urged the rest of the team to actually take more shots on goal. Simple common sense logic really, if you shoot more you will score more. If you perform a google search you can confirm this fact that Rodgers has urged his team to shoot more. Goals are not coming in large numbers from any other members of the squad. It's a far cry from Barca where goals can come from more than a whole host of players. They are a club that also utilizes the same 4-3-3 formation we do at Liverpool by the way.

  16. You'll not find me disagreeing with any of what you wrote and clearly Suarez is a hugely important and influential figure within the team. I agree that the midfield aren't chipping in with their fair share - although I had begun to think that Sahin was beginning to start to perform in that department, yet he went a few games without scoring and suddenly disappeared off the teamsheet.

    My hope is that, with the return of Lucas and I'm sure that we're only a week or so away from him playing a full 90mins, Gerrard will be allowed to get further forward and play just off Suarez. For all Shelvey's potential, I think Gerrard is a far more complete player at the moment, and I would hope and expect a few more goals from there.

    And while Barca most certainly do play 4-3-3, I rather think they've had more than a little over a dozen league games to get it right, unlike us. :)

  17. Great Striker, I've been an admire of his for 5 years now and actually wanted Liverpool to get him after nando left. Great with his feet, bring players into the game with his excellent hold-up play and is a dead ball specialist which we haven't had in years. Not saying Suarez isn't good, but Cardozo has the same air Juninho at Lyon and the Becks of old used to have when they were over the ball. You always expected them to score. Get him BR!

  18. I've got to say that I agree with Scoopbassist on most of this, however It is clear that Liverpool need other goalscorers from midfield and the wing. How you could call a well written critique of an article 'derogatory' is simply ludicrous. Almost dictatorial even!

  19. Fingers crossed then ! as he sounds a better bet compared to some of the other strikers that are being linked

  20. We all know what happened after!! I agree Lucas got injured and watching yesterdays performance it just goes to show how much we have missed a proper DM to protect the back four. Fingers crossed he can now stay injury free and help us get back up the league. Im not blaming everything that happened last season on the fact Lucas was injured but when in form he really does make a massive difference for the team!