27 Oct 2013

Traitor! Carra supports Fergie criticism of 'ridiculous' Suarez incident. Surprise...?

In the aftermath of the 2011 Patrice Evra race-row, Kenny Dalglish and his squad donned ludicrous Luis Suarez T-shirts in an ill-advised show of cringing solidarity for the Uruguayan. In my view, that incident is one of the most embarrassing PR catastrophes in history of LFC, and it appears that Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher holds a similar view.

In his new autobiography, former Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson slates the Suarez T-shirt stunt. He scathes:

"Later, Liverpool wore those T-Shirts supporting Suarez, which I thought was the most ridiculous thing for a club of Liverpool's stature. I don't think it helped Kenny"

In his column for the Daily Mail today, Carra AGREES with Fergie's assessment of the T-shirt debacle. He observes:

"I’ve read [Ferguson's] book and it is excellent, as you would expect from its author. Certain criticisms of Liverpool are justified, too, such as the barb about us wearing T-shirts to support Luis Suarez at Wigan"

At the time, Dalglish claimed that the entire squad was 'united' and supported the action, but it appears that wasn't actually the case. I wonder who else in the squad thought it was a bad idea, but went ahead with it anyway? I also wonder if Carra made his feelings know to Dalglish...?

Carra also agreed with Ferguson's criticism of Rafa Benitez's infamous 'facts' press conference, referring to the incident as 'ill-advised'.

To be honest, I still don't see what all the fuss is about. The media (predictably) latched onto it, but the widely-spun myth that LFC's form consequently suffered as a result is just nonsense.

The Reds lost only one of the next EIGHTEEN league games after that press conference, and put together a run of scintillating form that almost saw the club clinch the title for the first time in 19 years. Additionally, the club's results included a 5-0 aggregate thrashing of Real Madrid in the Champions League, and, of course, the magnificent 4-1 annihilation of United at Old Trafford.

If only Rafa had delivered that press conference two months earlier in November; Liverpool may have actually gone on to win the league!

Never tire of watching that ;-)

N.B. For those who can't take a joke: I'm not really calling Carra a 'traitor'. It's clearly ironic as I agree with his view.



  1. With his book Ferguson is still trying to play mind games as if from the grave. I mean, he's gone, but still wants to get under LFC skin.

    What I am surprised about is what appears to be a level of support or grudging respect from you for Rafa, as I know that you don't rate him. I wanted Rafa back and would still welcome him if the circumstances were right, but BR's doing a great job and definitely has Fergie's number. :)

    As for the infamous T-shirt issue; I think that it was ill advised, but I still believe that Suárez was treated unfairly over the whole issue. Wearing the T-shirts was not a dignified way for our club to proceed, but I believe that Fergie sent his players out with instructions to wind Suárez up and If Suárez was guilty of racist behaviour, then so was Evra, but no punishment for him.

    I know you won't agree with me and Suárez can get up to all sorts of dodginess, but he is not a racist. How about some good press for the guy who destroyed WBA, with a little help from his friends.

  2. I've never argued that Suarez is racist. In fact, I've vehemently argued the opposite. He is a genius footballer, and I love watching him, but he just causes so many problems. He's paid the price though, so it's a clean slate for him at the mo, so long may it continue.

    Re RB - there are certain aspects of his management style that I don't like, and his man-management/transfer performance at LC was questionable at times, but he also has many great qualities too, and in the interests of fairness, I like to highlight those too.

    To be honest, I really don't get all the antipathy towards ferguson's LFC comments. I've read his book (superb read), and there's no resentment and/or deliberate provocation (IMO). he just gives fairly moderate and harmless views on LFC.

    For example, the Hendo comments. What a massive storm in a teacup. He didn't denigrate the guy at all, but it's made to look like he insulted him or something. I actually doubt Rodgers has read the actual comments in the book - looks to me like he just read the exaggerated press coverage and responded to that.

  3. Something very strange is happening. We're on the same page far too often these days. Apart from your Fergie comments, I agree with pretty much everything you just said.

    I believe Fergie always had a massive chip on his shoulder re LFC and took/takes every opportunity that he can to unsettle us or create problems. Not so unusual in the modern game, but Fergie takes it to extremes.

  4. if we beat arsernal on Saturday we have 12 more points then last season at this stage
    that means we can be as bad as we were last season and achieve enough points for top 4 in all other season
    although this season i think we might need a little more 78 for 4th place

  5. my only concern is that we have no game changer
    utd bring on hernandez , city dzeko , tottrham defoe
    liverpool moses not bad but we could do better
    anyway if SAS continue on their form a 3rd striker is not needed

  6. is this team better then the 08/09 team

    we had torres and gerrrad now we have suarez and sturridge
    kuyts work rate is made up by henderson

    in the middle we had mascherano,alonso,lucas,riera and benayoun

    in my opinion lucas,gerrard ,allen ,moses and coutinho is just as good

    and aspas and sterling cant really do worse than keane and babel

  7. defence in 08/09
    arbeloa,degen,aurelio and dossena
    johnson , kelly,enrique and cissoko is much better
    toure,sakho,skrtel and agger is also as good carra,agger,skrtel and hyypia
    mignolet is close to reina level

    on the other hand utd look complete garbage compared to their 08/09 team , as do chelsea and everton
    only arsernal look a bit stronger
    dont count spurs or city as title contenders

  8. suarez,sturridge,coutinho,henderson,gerrrad,lucas,johnson,enrique,toure,agger and mignolet
    is stronger than
    torres,kuyt,benayoun,gerrard,mascherano,alonso,arbeloa,auerlio,carragher agger and reina

    and the bench of aspas,moses/sterling,allen,alberto,skrtel/cissoko ,sakho and jones
    is better than
    keane , riera/babel,lucas,el zhar , skrtel/dossena , hyypia and cavelieri

    only question is rodgers anywhere near as good as Rafa ?

  9. Actually, before the 'facts' comments, Liverpool were top of the table, ahead of Man United. After the comments, Liverpool went on to draw three games in a row, which saw Man United go ahead of them and we never ever managed to catch up. I think that's why people said we suffered as a result.

  10. there is no manager on earth who is perfect. in a relatively short period of time (compared to fergie) RB achieved a hell of a lot for us. Undoubtedly he made errors in the transfer market - but tell me who hasnt? Hasnt BR? Didnt KD? Didnt Fergie?

    I can guarantee that if the shoe was on the other foot and KD had the choice of either solving it between the 2 players or going to the FA - KD would have behaved honourably. Fergie would have done the same if the player wasnt suarez, the manager wasnt KD and the club wasnt liverpool. This was a massive opportunity for fergie to stick the knife into KD and he didnt let the opportunity go. Once it was a racism charge there was no way the FA would have decided in favour of Suarez - it would have been bad PR. So it was decided Suarez wasnt racist but still banned him for 8 games? Either he is or isnt? In the altercation was evra silent? did he not say anything to Suarez?

    The T-shirt issue only transpired because despite KD spending 100 million the liverpool team wasnt performing - suarez was the player keeping us afloat - KD knew it and so did the rest of the team. Though the t-shirt issue wasnt the only way the team could have shown its support - and once it did do then it was its duty to defend suarez case properly and appeal - but they left it in mid air.Naturally suarez felt hard done by having to sit out 8 games. Remember when mousa dembele had afters with suarez in the spurs match at anfield - in the sky interview he was given the opportunity to put his side of the story - and he simply said its done with the game is over!
    thats the way honourable people behave.

    Yes suarez dives, but so do half the other players - do they get a similar level of stick? Suarez's crimes are amplified a hundred times over whereas others dont get nearly a tenth of the stick.

    Fergie unlike any other manager really has it in for liverpool - despite the fact that for the bulk of his reign liverpool never really challenged apart from the odd season. The snippets of the book that have been quoted in the press justify this. A whole chapter devoted to liverpool? Critical of Dalglish's purchases when the team finished 8th? And no threat to UTD? Bizarre!

  11. Well rafa done his facts press conference on the 9th of january then our league form dipped whether we were unbeaten for 18 league games or not, we drew with stoke the next day

    10/01/2009 Stoke City Away D 0-0
    19/01/2009 Everton Home D 1-1
    28/01/2009 Wigan Athletic Away D 1-1
    01/02/2009 Chelsea Home W 2-0
    07/02/2009 Portsmouth Away W 3-2
    22/02/2009 Manchester City Home D 1-1
    28/02/2009 Middlesbrough Away L 0-2
    we went ahead against Everton and conceded in the last minute as with Wigan away, we had to come from behind to equalise v city and middlesborough we were woeful and our performance levels dropped given how good we were at xmas time and leading up to that, were as Utd didn't concede a goal for something like 12 games up until we beat them im sure, i don't have the stats on Utd but that's about right, so was quite obvious beintez spurred them on and put some pressure on us

  12. I'll never forgive Arshavin for those 4 goals. Hate that guy....

    We played some of the best football i've seen us play in years in that period. The games against Real will never be forgotten.

    Also what will never be forgotten is the dirty cheap feeling i got when i seen those t-shirts for the first time. Dignity and class were thrown out the window that day, even if he had turned out to be innocent it was a cheap move, one we should have been above. I'm sure Carra wasnt the only one who questioned why such a public display should be forced on players, surely a private word of support would be enough. Whether he voiced that or not is anyones guess.
    I dont see him doing a Dear Diary like Alex.

    Nice to see Borini get a goal today. Hope he gets a few more, might increase a re-sale value.

  13. Agree, never seen, or can i ever see Fergie passing up the oppertunity to undermine LFC and if he can, KD. Professional rivalry gone a bit personal. But he always keeps it about football.
    Everything else spot on.

  14. Don't agree with you re Fergie. His book conveniently sidesteps the important issues (Rock of Gibraltar affair, his lack of loyalty despite demanding it himself), shows his ongoing obsession with LFC- A whole chapter on them? the SG comment, criticism of AC JH SD, rather than explaining his poor buys (Anderson £16m, Nani £17m, Veron £28m Kagawa £12m etc)
    Plus he goes on and n about his complete control of everything at Man Utd being crucial to success, then calls Rafa a Control Freak ! Laughable. Banning any journalist who asks tough questions. Holding grudges against everyone from the BBC to selling Jap Stam whilst saying things shouldn't be made personal.
    So many contradictions.
    Objectively, yes, as great manager. But as a man? Objectionable.
    With that said, superb post. Well done for your Suarez clean slate. Let's hope he continues to deserve it.

  15. Gerrard . Alonso Mascherano and Benayoun worse than
    Gerrard Lucas Allen and Coutinho?
    You crack me up....

  16. I too agree with Carra. That whole episode was clearly badly managed. Suarez, great player for us though he is, blatantly racially abused Evra. He clearly used racial terms in an abusive way to wind him up NOT in an affectionate manner as was ludicrously put forward by those saying his use of those words was a cultural misunderstanding. An apology should have been issued & the club & Suarez should have worked on PR by contributing in some way to the 'Kick it Out' campaign rather than coming up with ridiculous excuses & wearing those T shirts. I felt ashamed to be a Liverpool fan & thought the whole business brought our great club into global disrepute.

  17. Benitez put his foot in it and Fergie had the last laugh in 08/09. Rafa should have rather kept quite.

    That is in the past though. The mancs are no longer going to be the force that they once were...

  18. Nothing funny about your article Jamie ?!?

    Im trying to see where the joke in this.?!?

    Seems like your headlines are becoming more about sensationalism than content!

  19. I really don't see what the big deal is with the T-Shirts, or why they are "ridiculous". While they might have been ineffective in the grand scheme of things, I don't see how a show of solidarity is ridiculous.

    Fact of the matter is, there was no real good way of handling that - since the initial allegation the verdict was pretty much already decided, the narrative set, and the FA and the media had their poster boy - nothing was going to undo the course of action being taken. The team making a statement saying "we won't throw you under the bus WWTYUTB" is not a bad thing when everyone is ganging up to throw someone under the bus.

    Unfortunately for Suarez he was scapegoated, made a poster boy for the FA, Kick it out, opposition clubs, and a new muse for the media - he didn't have a chance in hell in getting a fair and balanced decision - T-shirts weren't going to change that - but as I say a show of support for someone at a time when 99% of people are out to get him is not a bad thing.

    I think they could have made an example of him in a way that was just as effective, but not so drastic, by accepting his cultural explanation, and giving maybe a 3 game ban for ignorance.

    Racist is a very heavy label to carry, unfortunately there are blood thirsty parties ready to pounce on anyone at the slightest sniff of anything racial, which is wrong. The crux of the issue is this - Suarez was labelled a racist, KD and co. defended him - I believe they were right in doing so.

  20. Rafa has many more years of experience as a manager than Rodgers so your question is a bit silly to be honest.

    Credit where credit is due, Rodgers took over a team that was going nowhere and is already showing progress. Rafa took over a team that had qualified for the Champions League the previous season.

    I think you should rather ask the same question when Rodgers has been at Anfield for as long as Rafa was = 6 years.

  21. I might be wrong, but did he drop Torres for the next game? Either way, rafa had to follow up those statements with a win otherwise the fergie fan club press were going to maul him. He didn't and they did.

  22. I agree with you. I can see that it would have been better for LFCs reputation to take it on the chin and diplomatically join in the condemnation, but to allow one of your own to be globally labelled a racist by a kangaroo court, when you believe that not to be the case makes the response understandable.

  23. I don't understand the comparisons Sha ker is making, not to mention they are a bit off topic.

    I agree with your comments about Rodgers. I hope he's here for a long time and wins some trophies along the way. He can continue to develop as a manager and keep building his ideal team.

    However, the team that Sha ker is listing ultimately won nothing under Benitez. That's not the 2005 CL final team of 2006 FA cup team. So why the comparisons? Seems pointless to me.

  24. You know what...I'm with El_Uruguayo. Seriously, I never totally understood the out roar over the t-shirt scandal. I'm open to someone who could give me a valid correction, but the way I saw it was, most of Suarez' team mates felt compelled to publicly support him, because they believed he's not a racist, since that was the focus of the barbs fired at Suarez. It's been almost 2 years and I'm still struggling to find anything about it that offends me.

  25. Suarez scores at great hattrick lets bang on about the rascist bull shi t .No one ever mentions that evra used rascist remarks to suarez and followed him around for 5 min.Any one who knows suarez life story would know he is not rascist so just because evra accussed him does not mean you have to admit being guilty ...Its alk in the past suarez has moved on so have lfc but irmt seems every time when suarez scores he is called a rascist . I dont see any articles aboyr john terry every week

  26. why not?
    i would say suarez replaces gerrard
    gerrard is now playing the alonso role and gerrard contributes more from that role
    lucas maybe not as good as mascherano
    and coutinho is better than benayoun
    allen is as bad as lucas in 08/09
    so there you go

  27. AndWithSuchSimplicity11:53 am, October 28, 2013

    Hindsight is a wonderful thing. Carragher only mentions it now, but didn't at the time. Funny that....
    Normally the wearing of t-shirts is a good way to show solidarity, unfortunately the press (and Paul McGrath) twisted it.

  28. jamie talked about the 08/09 team so its not irrelevant
    and that team was the best we had in the last 23 years
    the cl win was a fluke
    and anyone can win fa cup even wigan

  29. From what you have printed I have a different read. Carra isn't saying he didn't support Suarez...just the idea of wearing t-shirts like some sort of teen girl fan club at a Justin Bieber concert. Worst PR catastrophe in team history? I had totally forgotten about it until you brought it up...so if that's the worst, the PR bunch at Anfield must be doing pretty good work.

  30. AndWithSuchSimplicity11:55 am, October 28, 2013

    I think he conveniently sidesteps a lot of stuff. No mention of how he got away with a couple of diving bans, no mention of Shearer turning him down twice, and no mention of Rafa phoning him and offering support when his grandchild was seriously ill.
    Bitter old man.

  31. You are contradicting yourself because you just said that was our best team in 23 years, however, in your post above you said our current crop of players are stronger than the Benitez team.

  32. "had"
    not now

  33. AndWithSuchSimplicity12:48 pm, October 28, 2013

    I'd rather have a Suarez t-shirt than a cream Armani suit.........

  34. AndWithSuchSimplicity12:53 pm, October 28, 2013

    I'm not sure why any Liverpool fan would WANT to read it, though. I certainly wouldn't pay for a copy.
    Yes, he was a great manager, but it smacks of masochism to actually read the book.

  35. AndWithSuchSimplicity12:58 pm, October 28, 2013

    It was refreshing that someone had the balls to stand up to him. Yes, in hindsight, it backfired.

  36. AndWithSuchSimplicity1:00 pm, October 28, 2013

    I only ever felt ashamed once, and that was on the ferry coming back from Brussels.
    Get over yourself, mate, they were just t-shirts.

  37. Can't this issue just be put to bed now?

  38. Quite a few of the things Rafa said backfired. "I guarantee 4th" another famous quote of his in 2009/2010 eventually saw us finishing 7th.

  39. defo the tee shirts were showing support for a team mate who was the victim of the biggest witchhunt in football
    all instigated by that c"nt ferguson and that orrible little t"at evra who uses theN wordmore than most

  40. the funeral of brian giannasi is this coming fri 1 45 at st marys west derby village. its fitting cos shanks had his there .brian was a great red home and away and was a steward on barnes coaches and like bobby Wilcox was a legend great memories of the beachy and the York rail fc days in the 70"s and that train to rome in 77 RIP BRIAN YNWA

  41. You have to look past petty rivalry and simply appreciate that Ferguson was an amazing manager, arguably one of the greatest of all time. His insight into the game has value.

    And to dispell a myth about the book - it's written in staid, uncontroversial manner. There's no deliberate provocation - he just outlines the facts (as he sees it) about various incidents. There's very little negative/resentful judgment of individuals. It's a great read.

  42. In hindsight it's still very tough to see what could have been done to reach an optimal outcome. Everyone was so gung-ho on pronouncing him a racist, that resistance was almost futile. Not resisting would be perceived as a presumption of guilt. The whole thing was a PR nightmare, because the cards were so heavily stacked against Suarez - any action or inaction would be seen as an infraction.
    The conflict was not racially motivated - it was a natural occurance between a striker and a defender who clashed. Use of a "racial" word does not equal racism. The onslaught on Suarez for this does not help the fight against racism, only trivializes it.
    Strange (sad) vicious circle this is, media dictates(twists) public opinion, FA acts to satisfy public opinion, the truth is lost.
    I don't think SAF, Rodgers, anyone for that matter could have handled this any better.

  43. AndWithSuchSimplicity2:18 pm, October 28, 2013

    It's not a matter of looking past petty rivalry, and i do acknowledge him as a genius manager. But to read the book will only be recalling our (LFC's) failings over the last 20-odd years, which I don't need reminding of.
    The cover-price that you paid (assuming you didn't get a 'freebie') is also going to subsidise an old man's alcohol dependency, which is quite irresponsible of you.....

  44. AndWithSuchSimplicity2:29 pm, October 28, 2013

    Ferguson capitalised on it because it was the only way of stopping a player who had ripped his team apart twice. It was a purely football decision on his part, nothing to do with 'morals' or 'racism'.

  45. AndWithSuchSimplicity2:29 pm, October 28, 2013

    Not on this site, mate ;)

  46. They could have handled it better by not taking the tone they did.

    The club handled this like it was a witch hunt. To some degree, it was.

    But at the same time, Suarez was wrong.

    For the club to essentially pretend like he didn't do anything wrong is the problem.

    The club mishandled it from the beginning and for that matter, so did the FA.

    How they gave Suarez 8 games and Terry 4 games still irks me. Both's actions were wrong and they should have been treated equally (8 games for each player). After all, they actually caught Terry on camera.

  47. He isn't racist as he's mixed race himself

  48. After such a good team performance and outstanding individual display by a player returning from long term absence I am extremely disappointed that the lead in your article above returns to associate Jamie Carragher with such an undeserving term as "Traitor" to Liverpool (there can never be any 'JK Truth' in such demeaning association. I know such a cheap shot in your title will grab the attention of some of your readers who have given up on your seemingly determined reluctance to promote the good side of The Reds.
    It is my view you would garner more support for your views if you 'came out' and admitted your desire that LFC should transfer our best player because of his indescretions and also admit with relish and pride that our club and England captain is doing a fine job both on and off the pitch. I believe Mr Henry, Brendan Rodgers and the Liverpool FC supporters will concur with that.
    Please, please, please stop raking over old coals and show your desire for the club to win the League Title and bring the Mersey Beat back to Liverpool. I' sure you, in your heart of hearts, want that.


  49. Correction: Please insert "was wrong" after "indescretions and also " I'm (sure you)"
    Apologies for errors.

  50. Brilliant manager, but quite possibly a bit of a shithead. For those like me who wont be reading his book, this summary of his Harvard talk is definitely worth a quick read. Whatever opinions we have of him, he was unquestionably one of the all time greats


  51. Are u sure cause i never seen any of ur article praising suarez.

  52. I turned the tv on to watch the match, and all I see during the pre-game show is the players warming up together like normal, except they're just wearing different shirts, with their team mate printed on the front. What the hell is offending and scandalous about that? Did they wear shirts that said, 'Evra is a pussy, harden up', or, 'Everyone Hates Evra', or 'Racism is Okay? IMO, it was all blown massively out of proportion.

  53. AndWithSuchSimplicity11:00 pm, October 28, 2013

    'A bit'..... !!!!

  54. AndWithSuchSimplicity11:07 pm, October 28, 2013

    I agree mate. When the team came out for the warm up my first thought was, "Thank God. They're sticking by him." And it reinforced my pride in the club. Anyone who felt "ashamed" that football players wore T-shirts with a picture of a colleague/friend on them has an awfully skewed view on life.

  55. AndWithSuchSimplicity11:24 pm, October 28, 2013

    When this 'alleged' racist comment was made by Roy Hodgson last week, some bloke was on Sky saying "At least he apologised for it straight away. Unlike Suarez and Terry who both denied it....".

    Thanks a lot SKY. Still peddling fncking lies, just like Murdoch. For the record: Suarez admitted to what he had said immediately, because he did NOT REGARD IT as a racially-motivated comment.

    Woy needs to watch out, because the Society of Black Lawyers [sic] are on his case, and say a simple apology is not good enough. Sigh.....

  56. And what I've found is, no one has ever actually justified why they think it was such a scandal.

  57. I disagree that they were 'just t-shirts,' it was a very public dismissal of a well founded racism charge that was then under formal investigation.

  58. Agree with every point you make.

  59. spot on,the most galling thing following the "rant" was the stoke game where we had a perfectly legit goal disallowed for an off side!!had we won that game i think the pressure would have gone back on utd,as for the everton game i think rafa took off torres and put lucas on who gave away a needless foul for dunkndisorderly to equalise.also,had rafa kept keane we could have possibly won the league,

  60. mcgraths an absolute arsehole,he said in an interview with irelands todayfm that under atkinson they use to play 5 aside games with the "coons against the whites"...atkinsons words!!!mcgrath didnt say in the interview that he thought ron was a racist,fcuking unbelievable !!

  61. i thought i'd logged onto the wrong website ;-)