Sticksboi05

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United are really the only ones you can compare yourself to, year in and year out. Citeh, frankly, they distort the whole landscape and same with Chelsea in the past. They are like the Redskins (if there were no salary cap).

As far as spurs, everyone wants Modric and should they fail to gain the CL spot both him and Bale are gone. Dani Alves was making comments about Gareth Bale last night, about how he'd start at left back at Barca "hypothetically".

As far as getting more quality depth. Need another striker. Podolski is supposedly a done deal pending we are in the Champion's league. So I'll be happy with that. Wingers, I think we are okay. Central midfielders we have plenty but an experienced hand like Benayoun wouldn't hurt. Center backs, I don't really have any complaints. I think Arsenal have their pairing with Kos and Verm. Add Vertonghen and I think that's plenty. For fullbacks, Sagna is elite but Santos/Gibbs leaves something to be desired and I don't like the prospect of Jenkinson coming off the bench. And of course, a back up gk for Szcz. He IS the starter, but we're one bent finger away from Almunia and Flappy-handski.

And I'm convinced that Szcz is as much a difference this year as RVP's form. United have built a long string of success on their ability to get at least a point from good to decent keeper play even when their field players aren't doing it that day.

Personally I think 3 central defenders isn't enough if not one of the full backs can play in the center and the backup for that fullback is quite good. I dont rate Koscielny either which leaves Vermaelen as the only top center back in the club at the moment imo. With his history of injuries, I think having him, Koscielny and Verthongen is a bit weak. I dont really count Mertesacker and Djorou cause playing them is disaster.

In central midfield I think you've got enough depth, not enough quality (like United). Many good players, only Wilshire top class. Alex Song the closest imo, even though Rosicky's really found form the last months and Arteta's been pretty good. If you compare it to the top midfields in Europe though, it's nowhere near the same quality. Not that thats needed to win the premiership, obviously with Uniteds midfield this season, but then you'd at least need to compensate somewhere else.

I agree with you on the wingers. I dont really like Walcott, to inconsistent and lack of end product but on his good days he's immense. The same goes for Gevinho (Walcott a bit better though).

Its as much a gut feeling and based on experience and Arsenals experience and mentality that makes me so sure Arsenal wont be properly challenging for the title coming season, but you're more than welcome to point it out in a year if I'm wrong. I dont necessarily think Chelsea will finish above Arsenal coming season, but if one of them will be challenging for the title I'm sure thats the blue for south London.

United have had a good goalie in VDS for a long time but before that there was a terrible mess in goal for many years, and so was the situation before Christmas this season. I feel our defenders both this season and the past years deserve more credit than our goalie. The central defence has been superb since 06/07 and the biggest reason for our success.

Not so sure Bale will be gone this summer if Spurs dont qualify. Not many clubs can put out that kind of money, and I think Jordi Alba is a more probable left back for Barca this summer than Bale. Bale is no where near where he should be defensively as a full back.

You seem like you watch quite a lot of english soccer. Are many places in and around DC showing the Premiership? Ever been to Emirates/Highbury btw?

He can't even make the French national team now (he is N°3), and believe me we are thin at his position. Last but not least we are better off without him on the field. I hope Arsenal fans are happy with him, we are not.

Behind Debuchy and Reveillere?

Edited by Paddis

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Behind Debuchy and Reveillere?

Exactly, he wasn't even selected for the friendly vs Germany (we won 1-2). He is labelled as the most overrated player of our national team.

Edited by FrFan

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Yeah I watched that game. Debuchy was especially great going forward with a nice assist on Girouds goal but thats also what you'd expect from someone who's played in midfield before. How would you rate him defensivly as a full back?

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Impressive defending by the Blues considering Barcelona had 80% possession.

Yes although its hard to believe that Barca can hit bar and post three times and miss at least two sitters next time around without scoring. Good result but its being treated as if they have knocked Barca out over here! still 90+ minutes to go.

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..... I'm new to this forum and not American (english is my second language so sorry for misspellings etc), but I'm wondering are any of you guys that supports an English team English or European or Americans supporting English teams?

Welcome to this place of ours man. But be prepared to have your personal life get messed up. It's quite the addiction. And don't worry at all on your written English. It's far better as it is than a whole bunch of folks on here who's primary language is English. You'll fit in just fine. :cheers:

100% Scouse, NOT English here. Those heathens just happen to attached to the Independent Peoples Republic. *Smiles.* Liverpool born and bred. (For my sins as you'd doubtless say given your club of choice.).

Joking aside, it's funny how many Scandinavian (which I presume you too are given your location) friends I have who speak better Scouse than me. Their first introduction to England has been through football, and they've naturally picked up the dialect as they've come over for games and expanded their English as they've gone along. *Sidenote* Gota' respect the Hell out of those guys to take the time, effort and no less big financial outlay to follow my team as often as they do every year, domestically and in Europe; from another freaking Country.

And talking of Scandinavian 'Scousers', man could I tell you some tales about one of my all time favourite L'pool players, Koldings very own Jan Molby. Aside from being arguably one of the most successful imports into the English league, given his duration and success at the the very top level, as well as being one of the finest passes of a football I've ever had the privilege to watch live; Rambo was a top, TOP guy. And funny as Hell with it too. From turning over TR7's going the wrong way down a one way street; to lobbing his manhood out in a gay club for the Hell of it and all points inbetween; the man's a complete living legend. And a guy who used to happily converse and drink with fans back in the '80's. Love that man. Mentioning the upcoming cup final below, my older cousin who used to see him in various drinking establishments around town got our tickets for the '86 final by walking up to big Jan's house and asking if he could help the lads out with tickets.

Somehow I don't think I'd get past the gate without being shot if I tried that at Gerrard's today. Changed times, and not for the better in many respects.

In the interests of L'pool/ Utd relations, grins; here's a classic Rambo goal that until recently you'd never of seen if you weren't in the ground that night due to an English TV strike at the time. One of two he got that League Cup tie in a 2-1 L'pool win. (The other being a penalty, another thing he was supreme at. Once saw him bag a hat-trick of pens against Coventry in the Lge Cup. But thats another story.):

yea I was reading about this on Big Soccer. I've never met the guy, but used to see him posting over there all the time. RIP

we are going to be dead silent at the game for that minute

Maybe you could have a word with Chelsea's plastic flag waving, low life cretin of a fanbase on just how to conduct yourself during a minutes silence?

After Sunday, May 5th has become even more of a problem than it already was for what's inevitably going to go off away from the pitch.

Scumbags.

Impressive defending by the Blues considering Barcelona had 80% possession.

With a MASSIVE element of luck thrown in for good measure. With Drogba spending more time on the floor than Heskey ever did, which takes some doing.

I can't see anything else than a Madrid/ Barcelona final after those first legs. Which comes with mixed blessings for me as, as much as I'd be ecstatic to see the rent boys get a serious football lesson out in Catalonia, a meeting of the two Spanish giants will ensure either Guardiola or Mourinho join Paisley as the only Coach/Manager to win 3 European Cups.

Kinda' hoped Bob would stand alone forever on that one, sighs.

Hail.

Edited by Gibbs Hog Heaven

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Haha, yeah, I know you scouse differ yourself from english. Seen the banners. I am scandinavian you're right about that. Norwegian, but living in Copenhagen Denmark at the moment. Season ticket holder at Old Trafford, and travelling to watch United about 25 times a season. It takes a lot of time and money as you say but that's all about priorities and sacrifices. I've been to Anfield quite a few times now, but never seen United win. Both games this season acctually. Horrendous! Liverpool has just demolished the United midfield for many years at Anfield. Not so much in the two games this season, but especially the times with Mascherano and Alonso were horrible. Scholes aren't fit to play at Anfield and hasn't been for many years and he stared as 1 of 2 in central midfield in all the 3 losses we had in a row.

And yes, Jan Mølby. Spending his days at the center circle. But when you play like that, move like that and look like that you're bound to be a cult hero. The way your cousin got them tickets for the 86 final is a great story. But yeah, times have changed drastically.

Liverpool and Man United are the two biggest clubs by far in Norway so I'm not surprised you've got a lot of scandinavian friends. I think most scandinavians are at a decent english level from young age as we're all such small countries that we really need to be good at more than one language, so when travelling to UK it comes naturally to pick up first a few words and then after a little while parts or the whole accent.

Whould you like Kenny to stay the next season?

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Ahhh, Norwegian, not Danish. Sorry. My bad. But FWIW, I know quite a few of your fellow Countrymen and woman. A good friend Magna's pretty high up in the Oslo police department. So if I ever get into any trouble in Norway, I'm covered, lol. It's funny how football brings so many different cultures and people together who's paths wouldn't normally cross. And how it enriches peoples lives. The police guys for example (there's 3 of them), use their trips watching L'pool as a total relief from the stresses of the job. They come for 3 days or so, totally kick back, have a great time getting blind drunk and forgetting everything in their stressful daily lives. One of my favourite Evans signings in the 90's was a Norwegian. Vegard Heggam. Another in a long line of modern L'pool full backs who was excellent going forward, but couldn't defend to save his life. (Johnson and Enrique being the latest examples.). Like you mentioned about Gareth Bale over the page, he should of been a winger, not a full back.

Would I like Kenny to stay another year?

There's a loaded question. Yes, he deserves at least one more year to turn this around. He walked into the biggest job any L'pool managers undertaken since Shankly completely rebuilt the club back in '59. And as poor as the league forms been, to come out of this season with two of the three domestic trophys has to be seen as a success. You get nothing for finishing fourth. Give me both cups and a 6th/ 7th place finish, as poor as that's been, any day of the week. As much as modern day football is all about money, silverware should always be the bottom line.

All that said, there's been MAJOR question marks on his judgement of players since his return, both his signings and the personnel he continues to send out there. Tactically he's been sadly found wanting on more than one occasion this year. There's been a lot of talk for a long time that most of the signings were Camolli's doing. With Dalglish maybe even forced to play them at times due to the ridiculous amount of money paid. Which in itself is a real worry as the final say should come down to the manager.

Next year's a massive year all round for the manager. Things need to improve dramatically in the league. And the summer should be real interesting to see just what he does do in the transfer market without the Frenchman's influence/ interference. There's still a long way's to go in this rebuild, and a lot of garbage to still move out of the club before we can even begin to think about challenging Utd and Citeh, let alone doing it. (With the greatest of respect Elessar, Arsenal aren't that much closer to challenging those two than we are. IF RVP goes, or spends any time out injured, your in one Hell of a mess.).

God willing he does turn the league form around, as FSG have shown last week with Camoli's axing that they won't stand on ceremony in taking time to make changes when things aren't going well.

As much as I love Dalglish, who means about as much to my City as most any person in history, I personally think Mourinho's the only man that can get Liverpool back to where we so crave to be.

Hopefully King Kenny proves me wrong on that.

Hail.

*Edit* Your a Utd season ticket holder that gets to around 25 games a season huh? Respect man. That's fantastic commitment and support.

Edited by Gibbs Hog Heaven

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This is a bit funny but I grew up in the neighbour town of Vegard Heggem, he started out his career in the same club I played for when I was a kid and I acctually had his mother as a teacher in school. lol. His career was ruined because of all the injuries which was a massive shame. One of the few players from Norway who had what it takes.

Dalglish sort of came out in defence of Comolli last week and said that he's pointed out every player and Comolli has just gone on and brought them in to the club. I think there are massive question marks on behalf of both those two in the job they've done in the transfer market. Massive fees for a few players I think isnt worth nearly as much and also bringing in a couple of players that I cant really see being good enough if Liverpool wants to get back in the top 4. Jose Enrique is a top signing, especially looking at the price and Suarez is a world class player for less than 20 mill sterling. Great deal as well. The rest I think is pretty poor deals and also players considered what the expected level of a Liverpool player is. Carroll and Henderson are still young so we'll see but I see Henderson more as a squad player than a regular in the years to come.

A big problem and worry for Liverpool at the moment (if the owners dont use rediculus amounts every year) is imo the financial state of the club. Without a new stadium and CL-games they are doomed to struggle with the other top clubs. Arsenal bring in twice the money of Liverpool each home game and United almost the same. City and Chelsea have got owners with the deepest pockets and will also feature in CL (at least City) for the next few years. If Liverpool dont get back up there next season, not only will it be tough to compete financially on transfer fees but also in wages and attracting the best players around if Liverpool are finishing 5-6-7. Liverpool is a massive brand with a great reputation but I think that fades quickly with a lot of youg footballers from the continent and around the world if they cant see Liverpool challenging for the title.

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Pretty much agree with all of that. Save for Henderson who looks like he's stepped up three leagues over night. He's shown virtually nothing you can work with, and has looked horrid since the get-go. He'd look out fo place in the Championship. He'd be gone tomorrow if it were up to me. As for Kenny's signings to date, Downing's shown enough at times to be given another year. But he needs to get some consistency. He was shocking at Wembley again last Saturday. Although Kenny playing both 'wide' players inside leaving the team so narrow didn't help matters. Even more bizarre with Carroll out there at 6 foot odd and nobody wide to supply him. Carroll's overall game has improved tenfold as the season's gone on. He's more aware of what's around him, and his first touch and control is massively improved from when he signed. But his finishing is still shocking. And that's what he's paid to do. I wouldn't off-load him just yet. But he'd be on a very short leash. Adam's got worse as the season's gone on. We knew he never had any pace to start with, but when his passing went to ****, his whole game fell apart and he just went around hacking people down. I wouldn't be sorry to see him go. Enrique, up to the past few months, is the one real success. But like Johnson on the other side, defensively he's woeful. The amount of times both get caught the wrong side of their man, for experienced players, is absolutely criminal. Suarez is the enigma. World class technical ability. League Two finishing ability more often than not. The amount of chances he creates for himself, then blows, really has to be seen to be believed. I really like the guy, and stood fully behind him through the racism B/S; but it's got to the point where your asking if we can afford to carry such a luxury at this stage of the rebuild when his end product is far from always there.

The transfer policy of younger, (supposed) quality players has been right. But the club's judgement of the quality of those players and the profligacy of wasting massive amounts of the owners money hasn't been. And, taking Kenny on face value, if he was the one behind the signings, and he's not just saying that for Camoli's benefit; then that leaves another major question mark against him this go-around.

The ground issue has gone suspiciously quiet. FSG made a big song and dance about looking into all possibilities, but nothing since. And as you quite rightly pointed out, it's imperative it happens sooner rather than later. Aside from that, things have improved dramatically financially. When they bought out the other two clowns, the debt was completely wiped out. And for the first time in living memory, the clubs potential commercially is finally being maximized. The new kit deal with Warrior sports (don't ask) is another example being it's the biggest in Egnlish history (Or at least till' Utd renew with Nike); with Liverpool having full rights to leisure and training wear. Throw in the big ass deal with Standard Charter, along with smaller deals, and the clubs as solvent as it's been for a long time.

So it's not an undue worry financially. But many more years out of the Champions League and it sure as heck will become one.

As a sidenote, oh how we laughed and mocked at our 'friends' down the East Lancs through those glorious 26 years Utd went between Championships.

22 years in, and as far away now as at any other time since #18; Liverpool may very well dwarf that period. :(

That said, we've still won more trophy's over the past two decades than anyone else bar Utd and Arsenal (who we can equal over the coming months with a cup and charity shield victory); with potentially another two this year. All in a period when we've struggled by our own exceptionally high standards.

So I guess I shouldn't complain that much.

Hail.

Edited by Gibbs Hog Heaven

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Yeah I watched that game. Debuchy was especially great going forward with a nice assist on Girouds goal but thats also what you'd expect from someone who's played in midfield before. How would you rate him defensivly as a full back?

Debuchy is very promising, don't forget that he is a former right-winger also, that makes him even more valuable. I think if he keeps on improving he will be the right anchor of our defense for years to come. Valencia and Bayern Munich are interested in him, the Germans probably think he'll be the next Willy Sagnol. I wish Nicolas Nkoulou was French :), this guy is going to be a beast.

Edited by FrFan

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So wait we got another Man United supporter in here? SWEET!!

---

Sidenote: so I was at the DCU game last night(My friends and I got invited down to the supporter section by Barra Brava). So in all honestly we probably should have creamed Montreal. The draw honestly felt like a loss. The first half we didn't hold on to the ball at all. Our defense was pathetic on Montreal goal(left a mile for the crosser and the player in the box. You could have gone for coffee and come back to score with that defending). The second half DCU started to look go and really attack. The DCU goal 30 yds out was so awkward the stadium reaction was delayed. Everyone was like "wait we scored? Oh AWESOME!!" lol. I thought we pulled it out at the end but of course with any dramatic goal you immediately look for a offside and of course it was. Still fun to get back up to RFK, drink lots of beer, and watch the Red&Black.

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So wait we got another Man United supporter in here? SWEET!!

---

Sidenote: so I was at the DCU game last night(My friends and I got invited down to the supporter section by Barra Brava). So in all honestly we probably should have creamed Montreal. The draw honestly felt like a loss. The first half we didn't hold on to the ball at all. Our defense was pathetic on Montreal goal(left a mile for the crosser and the player in the box. You could have gone for coffee and come back to score with that defending). The second half DCU started to look go and really attack. The DCU goal 30 yds out was so awkward the stadium reaction was delayed. Everyone was like "wait we scored? Oh AWESOME!!" lol. I thought we pulled it out at the end but of course with any dramatic goal you immediately look for a offside and of course it was. Still fun to get back up to RFK, drink lots of beer, and watch the Red&Black.

Damn, you were probably standing very close to me. I was in the front row of the Barra section waving one of those huge flags.

You are right, I definitely had a delayed reaction when we scored the first goal. I thought it was in the side netting.

On the second goal I literally jumped out of my shoe and started celebrating before starting a "**** you ref" chant

Edited by Skinz4Life12

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Even more bizarre with Carroll out there at 6 foot odd and nobody wide to supply him. Carroll's overall game has improved tenfold as the season's gone on. He's more aware of what's around him, and his first touch and control is massively improved from when he signed. But his finishing is still shocking. And that's what he's paid to do. I wouldn't off-load him just yet. But he'd be on a very short leash. Adam's got worse as the season's gone on. We knew he never had any pace to start with, but when his passing went to ****, his whole game fell apart and he just went around hacking people down. I wouldn't be sorry to see him go. Enrique, up to the past few months, is the one real success. But like Johnson on the other side, defensively he's woeful. The amount of times both get caught the wrong side of their man, for experienced players, is absolutely criminal. Suarez is the enigma. World class technical ability. League Two finishing ability more often than not. The amount of chances he creates for himself, then blows, really has to be seen to be believed. I really like the guy, and stood fully behind him through the racism B/S; but it's got to the point where your asking if we can afford to carry such a luxury at this stage of the rebuild when his end product is far from always there.

Agree about your fullbacks. Enrique has a dip in form at the moment and was e.g. a bit too involved in Parks goal at Anfield this season, but I feel he's better than Johnson defensively. G. Johnson have I personally never rated highly. He's great going forward but to shakey defensively and I would let Martin Kelly play a bit more next season. I think he looks a lot more promising than especially Flanagan but also Robinson.

Suarez missed a lot, but at the same time he's the only creative force in the team and most of them chances he missed he's created for himself. His balance and game in tight situations are sensational. A bit too moody and a darker side to him (with or without the racism case).

Charlie Adam never looked a top player imo. Never. Great left foot. 5-8 kilos to heavy. He never lasted 90 minutes in a single PL game in Blackpool. He was the heart of that team and it's no coincidence Blackpool were terrible after half time last year. Of course thats not all his fault, but he was such a big part in that team. Lacks to much pace to play as one of 2 in central midfield. If played, he needs to be 1 of 3 I think or against the weakest teams (like Scholes but Scholes better than Adam of course).

And I've also thought about that part with Carroll. If moneyballing then surely he needs some in and out wingers to give him the ball instead of wingers cutting in or players out wide that isnt even wingers. We'll see in the summer, Liverpool should get another quality winger I think but that's maybe not on top of the priorities?

The transfer policy of younger, (supposed) quality players has been right. But the club's judgement of the quality of those players and the profligacy of wasting massive amounts of the owners money hasn't been. And, taking Kenny on face value, if he was the one behind the signings, and he's not just saying that for Camoli's benefit; then that leaves another major question mark against him this go-around.

The ground issue has gone suspiciously quiet. FSG made a big song and dance about looking into all possibilities, but nothing since. And as you quite rightly pointed out, it's imperative it happens sooner rather than later. Aside from that, things have improved dramatically financially. When they bought out the other two clowns, the debt was completely wiped out. And for the first time in living memory, the clubs potential commercially is finally being maximized. The new kit deal with Warrior sports (don't ask) is another example being it's the biggest in Egnlish history (Or at least till' Utd renew with Nike); with Liverpool having full rights to leisure and training wear. Throw in the big ass deal with Standard Charter, along with smaller deals, and the clubs as solvent as it's been for a long time.

So it's not an undue worry financially. But many more years out of the Champions League and it sure as heck will become one.

Those sponsorship deals are great. I've actually thought about that and I was shocked when I found out what Carlsberg were paying. Its seems like the americans really know the business side of things. A lot of things can be said about the Glazers, but they really know how to find profits. Some of it due to increased ticket prices (which I think had to come sooner or later, no matter who owned the club as United had underpriced the tickets for a long time) but also in sponsorship deals etc. United have been increasing the revenues to a whole other level the last years. Of course we are in massive debt so most of the revenues go away but there's hope now if they put United on the stock market in Singapore.

That said, we've still won more trophy's over the past two decades than anyone else bar Utd and Arsenal (who we can equal over the coming months with a cup and charity shield victory); with potentially another two this year. All in a period when we've struggled by our own exceptionally high standards.

So I guess I shouldn't complain that much.

But that's the thing isnt it. Expectations are of course built on what used to be and what you were used to so when a supporter of a smaller team says we cant complain for a season without a trophy I dont think thats the reality of how it is. When you teams perfomances is under par you're in the right to complain, that's at least my view of things. A Liverpool supporter should expect a lot more than whats been the case in the league this season.

Talking about complaining and dissapointments. I've missed 4-5 Euro aways the last 5 years now and basically been all over Europe. When we got knocked out in Basel, only 3 players turned to the fans after the game; Rooney, Smalling and Phil Jones. I've seldom been so dissapointet of the boys as I was at that moment. People taking time off work and studies to travel to Portugal (freakin expensive), f.ing Bucharest and Basel that season and they dont even seem to appreciate the support we give them at every single away. Instead they ran straight into the tunell like small girls. They were probably ashamed of course, but nobody feels the players pain the same way as the supporters do. But I guess thats the way it is now. An industry filled with selfish people. A shame.

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We've been screaming for long enough for Kelly to be the first choice right back (he's actually a more natural center half, and just as solid there) with Johnson ahead of him to give us an outlet out wide. But Kenny and co sadly have other ideas. It's become more and more apparent this year that Flanagan's not going to cut it at the top level. Jack Robinson on the other hand I have real high hopes for. But whether he'll get his chance anytime soon now Enriques here remains to be seen. We'd sure as heck better have a winger down on our summer priorities list, but with the ridiculous amount of over payment for Downing and the woeful Henderson last summer, we probably won't. I'd also like to see Sterling at least on the bench more. If he keeps on progressing at his current rate, we've a serious talent on our hands there ala McManaman when he broke through.

Don't get me started on today's players and their attitude. The game I grew up, save for 11 aside, the officials and pitch markings, is that far removed from the sanitized version of today it's unreal. Football's changed beyond all recognition from my youth. And not for the better in many ways. But if I started on that I'd be here all night.

And rest assured we still do have and expect the highest expectations of the team. Neither ourselves or Utd have a divine right to be winning things. But more than any other football clubs in this Country, after all we've both achieved; we sure as Hell have a right to expect to be challenging year-on-year. This season has to be seen as a success if we do win the Cup in a few weeks. 2 out of the 3 domestic trophy's is better than a fourth place finish and no trophy's by a Country mile. But rest assured it's not been lost on many just how much we've regressed as the season's gone on in the league. And the honeymoon period for Dalglish is wearing VERY thin with more and more fans. I was just making the point that as poor as we've been the last two decades where it really counts, we've still managed to consistently win silverware. But no Liverpool fan is happy at just how far behind we've behind. We are, in a lot of ways, L'pool in name only. And no better or bigger on the pitch than the vast majority of the mediocrity in the Premier League. Except we have history and money behind us. A totally unacceptable state of affairs.

Next season they all have to start producing on a consistent basis. Or it won't just be the supporters unhappy. FSG will be acting too.

BTW, it's a pleasure to talk to a Utd fan with no bias who isn't afraid to tell it exactly like it is on his own club as opposed to the majority of modern day Utd 'fans' who think the club can do no wrong. (And we have our fair share of those morons too.).

Hail.

Edited by Gibbs Hog Heaven

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Damn, you were probably standing very close to me. I was in the front row of the Barra section waving one of those huge flags.

You are right, I definitely had a delayed reaction when we scored the first goal. I thought it was in the side netting.

On the second goal I literally jumped out of my shoe and started celebrating before starting a "**** you ref" chant

Yeah I was in absolute celebration and then my friend turned to me with a frown and I knew. I went off like hell. Being denied a goal hurts but a game winning one in the 89th min just outright stings.

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I think Johnson is under-rated as a defender and Kelly is over-rated going forward. It does help when Kuyt plays on the right (his work rate is phenomenal) which allows Johnson to be more aggressive. Kelly should be a center half and will be a good one.

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Personally I think 3 central defenders isn't enough if not one of the full backs can play in the center and the backup for that fullback is quite good. I dont rate Koscielny either which leaves Vermaelen as the only top center back in the club at the moment imo. With his history of injuries, I think having him, Koscielny and Verthongen is a bit weak. I dont really count Mertesacker and Djorou cause playing them is disaster.

In central midfield I think you've got enough depth, not enough quality (like United). Many good players, only Wilshire top class. Alex Song the closest imo, even though Rosicky's really found form the last months and Arteta's been pretty good. If you compare it to the top midfields in Europe though, it's nowhere near the same quality. Not that thats needed to win the premiership, obviously with Uniteds midfield this season, but then you'd at least need to compensate somewhere else.

I agree with you on the wingers. I dont really like Walcott, to inconsistent and lack of end product but on his good days he's immense. The same goes for Gevinho (Walcott a bit better though).

Its as much a gut feeling and based on experience and Arsenals experience and mentality that makes me so sure Arsenal wont be properly challenging for the title coming season, but you're more than welcome to point it out in a year if I'm wrong. I dont necessarily think Chelsea will finish above Arsenal coming season, but if one of them will be challenging for the title I'm sure thats the blue for south London.

United have had a good goalie in VDS for a long time but before that there was a terrible mess in goal for many years, and so was the situation before Christmas this season. I feel our defenders both this season and the past years deserve more credit than our goalie. The central defence has been superb since 06/07 and the biggest reason for our success.

Not so sure Bale will be gone this summer if Spurs dont qualify. Not many clubs can put out that kind of money, and I think Jordi Alba is a more probable left back for Barca this summer than Bale. Bale is no where near where he should be defensively as a full back.

You seem like you watch quite a lot of english soccer. Are many places in and around DC showing the Premiership? Ever been to Emirates/Highbury btw?

Behind Debuchy and Reveillere?

I don't post often, but I have to reply here. I'm a huge Arsenal fan, and can definitively tell you that, this season, Koscielny's been Arsenal's best defender. Vermaelen's great, and is a solid threat in the air and with his left foot, but he's been at fault for a number of goals this season, while Kos has been a rock.

As for Sagna - FrFan, I could care less whether he makes the French team - it's irrelevant to how he's played for Arsenal (and it's not exactly like French managers have a history of logical selection practices), and he's the best RB in England (the only ones that come close atm are ivaonvic and possibly richards).

Tend to agree with you on the other points, though I think the wingers aren't terrible. Walcott, Gervinho, Oxlade-Chamberlin and Ryo Myaichi (on loan to Bolton) are a group that could cause some problems in the near future.

Biggest issues that need rectifying moving forward are another forward, a LB, and a 3rd CB.

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GHH we're not all delusional Utd supporters. In fact the other week you were saying I was giving the Premier league too much credit lol because I said we would have a tough time defending the title the next few years. Most Utd supporters know where the weaknesses are in the team as well as the strengths(Unfortunately you will some that only know one name on the club). I'm curious about Chelsea next year based on what I've seen lately. I say less as Utd supporter and more of football fan that I hope Liverpool does straighten the ship. Tough to see a club with that much history dive like this especially with the great supporters you have.

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GHH we're not all delusional Utd supporters. In fact the other week you were saying I was giving the Premier league too much credit lol because I said we would have a tough time defending the title the next few years. Most Utd supporters know where the weaknesses are in the team as well as the strengths(Unfortunately you will some that only know one name on the club). I'm curious about Chelsea next year based on what I've seen lately. I say less as Utd supporter and more of football fan that I hope Liverpool does straighten the ship. Tough to see a club with that much history dive like this especially with the great supporters you have.

Meh, I wasn't speaking about people on these here boards man, More in England, where your average Utd fan outside of Manchester is akin to your average Dallas fan outside of Texas in the States, And since the advent of the Premier League, we have our fair share of that type of 'fan' too who continue to embarrass the living piss out of you. Sorry if it came across as anything personal as it certainly wasn't intended that way. Without wishing to sound condescending in any way, the knowledge of Americans on here, particularly the regulars in this thread, on 'soccer' is a delight to see; and makes it a real pleasure to both read and debate with all you guys.

Thanks for the kind words on L'pool, but we're still a good ways from challenging again.

Hail.

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So Madrid finally win a Classico, and Ronaldo finally turns up in the biggest of big games.

Changing of the guard in Spain.

And the rent boys better watch out Tuesday now as Barca's season looks like it's resting on that. Perfect scenario.

Hail.

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So Madrid finally win a Classico, and Ronaldo finally turns up in the biggest of big games.

Changing of the guard in Spain.

And the rent boys better watch out Tuesday now as Barca's season looks like it's resting on that. Perfect scenario.

Hail.

I

Madrid has figured out how to stop Messi. Barca should probably think about getting another goal scorer.

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There's a USL ref who needs to jump off a cliff. In the 90th min Kickers goalie charged for a ball in his box as a OC player tries to get it. Both get the ball and it flies out of bounds. Our goalie is flipped in collision and lays motionless for about 7 mins. The other player gets right back up. The ref proceeds to call a penalty(WTF) and Kickers lose.

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You guys really think Barca's been "figured" out? Chelsea beat them with an opportune counter by a pass that went past 4 Barca defenders for a sick off balance finish. Not to mention Barca hit the post and were just wide several times. Madrid needed an innocuous turnover by Tello (where he might've gotten grabbed by the defender), a perfectly timed run by Ronaldo, a very nice pass, and a finish from a very tight angle?

Very few teams can muster that kind of luck or skill in a span of three days. Also, if I'm Barca I wouldn't change anything about how I played Chelsea—they dominated but unfortunate about the posts and one counter. I'm also not sure that "Madrid figured out how to stop Messi" permanently.

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