Liverpool Must Avoid Summer Repeat Of 2002, 2009 & 2014

Liverpool Must Avoid Summer Repeat Of 2002, 2009 & 2014

What do the summers of 2002, 2009 and 2014 all have in common? Liverpool ballsed up every one, that's what. On those three occasions, the Reds had a wonderful chance of kicking on after near-title-winning campaigns, only to come crashing back down to reality after recruiting poorly and allowing rivals to pull clear again. Gerard Houllier started off the trend 16 years ago, after a fantastic Arsenal team were forced to win their remaining 13 matches to clinch the Premier …
Virgil And The Perfect Debut

Virgil And The Perfect Debut

Nothing scares me more than the debut of a big money player. It takes me back to the passage in Carra’s autobiography where he discusses the signing of El-Hadj Diouf from Lens. ‘The Serial Killer’ (and we can assume that he gave himself that nickname) cost Gerard Houllier £10m – the equivalent of about three times that today – shortly before the 2002 World Cup and claimed it would have fans on the edge of their seats. Well, if that …
Diouf and Gerrard: The Spat That Kept Spitting

Diouf and Gerrard: The Spat That Kept Spitting

"'Stevie G' was a very good player, people like him in Liverpool but he never did anything for his country. I am Mr. El Hadji Diouf, Mr. Senegal, but he is Mr. Liverpool and Senegal is bigger than Liverpool and he has to know that."
Well, somebody let Diouf near a microphone again and he just can’t resist gabbing on about his favourite topic. He’s brought up his, ahem, ‘spat’ with Steven Gerrard. The above quote amuses me. …
Stand And Deliver: Coutinho Back For Final Push

Stand And Deliver: Coutinho Back For Final Push

Following the announcement yesterday that the Centenary Stand will soon bear the exalted name of Kenny Dalglish, it was interesting to note the response from some fans. For many of an older vintage, like your columnist, there was an understandably emotional reaction to the honouring of a man we had worshipped on the field and in the dugout, a man as vital to our identification with Liverpool Football Club as Bill Shankly would have been for the generation before us. I …
Matip, Wijnaldum & Mane Proving Klopp Should Be Trusted This Summer

Matip, Wijnaldum & Mane Proving Klopp Should Be Trusted This Summer

Many past Liverpool managers have experienced utterly disastrous summer transfer windows. Gerard Houllier, Rafa Benitez and Brendan Rodgers all spectacularly failed to build on near title-winning seasons in 2001/02, 2008/09 and 2013/14, respectively, with dross such as El Hadji Diouf, Salif Diao, Philipp Degen and Alberto Aquilani bought in. Even Kenny Dalglish, for all his understandable God-like status at Anfield, decided to sign Jose Enrique, Charlie Adam and Andy Carroll. When the end of Jurgen Klopp’s first season as Liverpool …
Why This Summer Is Genuinely Liverpool's Biggest In Recent Memory

Why This Summer Is Genuinely Liverpool's Biggest In Recent Memory

I know that some of you will have read that headline, tutted to yourself and thought, “we say that every year”. You’re right, to be fair. Every summer that comes along, we tell ourselves that this is the one that will see Liverpool reach the next level. The one that will finally end the wait for that elusive Premier League title. We said it in 2002, 2009 and 2014, following the Reds’ best attempts at lifting the trophy since its …