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Hodgson escapes Dalglish's shadow

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Phil McNulty | 20:47 UK time, Saturday, 2 April 2011

The Hawthorns

Roy Hodgson spent 191 days at Liverpool failing spectacularly to escape from Kenny Dalglish's shadow - but emerged into the light with perfect timing as his rehabilitation continued at The Hawthorns.

Hodgson, sacked in January after a brief and tortuous Liverpool tenure, admitted he fought a losing battle with Dalglish's iconic status after beating the Scot in the race to succeed Rafael Benitez.

He walked alone at Anfield as The Kop demanded Dalglish's return with every setback, helped by the ammunition provided for them by Hodgson in the shape of poor results and signings of the standard of Paul Konchesky and Christian Poulsen.

Hodgson side-stepped all talk of revenge as Dalglish watched from close quarters while his predecessor enjoyed the satisfaction of The Baggies' vital 2-1 win against the club that dispensed with his services so swiftly.

And, while hardly expecting Hodgson to draw solace from such a scar on his record, it is almost impossible to escape the conclusion that this has turned into a "win-win" for both West Bromwich Albion and Liverpool.

Albion now have an experienced manager who already looks a more comfortable fit at The Hawthorns than he did at any stage on Merseyside - while Liverpool now have a manager who, unlike Hodgson, has a firm grip on the aspirations and expectations at Anfield.

Dalglish could not match his Liverpool predecessor when the pair met at the Hawthorns

Dalglish is the better man to lead Liverpool, while Hodgson has the credentials suited to reviving West Bromwich Albion. Everyone is a winner - despite the latter's obvious and understandable pain at his Anfield fate.

Hodgson looked relaxed in his surroundings on Saturday, in sharp contrast to his time at Liverpool when events, not always of his making it should be stressed, quickly spiralled out of control.

It was often a painful business watching Hodgson operating at Liverpool, haunted by defeat and unloved by a fan base who wasted no time in deciding he was not to their taste or liking.

Not so here. Hodgson was dignified and measured in victory as he can reflect on a satisfactory start in midlands, but with the main business of securing top-flight status still some way from conclusion.

Anyone expecting ill-feeling between Hodgson and Dalglish would have been sorely disappointed. Dalglish went to greet Hodgson warmly in the technical area before kick-off with a pat on the shoulder and a handshake that was reciprocated with smiles. The significance of the moment could be measured by the number of cameras there to record it.

Dalglish, despite the early loss of Glen Johnson and Daniel Agger to injury, looked as though he may condemn Hodgson to another miserable afternoon in Liverpool's company when Martin Skrtel headed them in front.

But Albion are responding to Hodgson's promptings in a manner that was rarely in evidence at Liverpool and they recovered to win courtesy of two Chris Brunt penalties, the first when Sotirios Kyrgiakos was harshly adjudged to have fouled the game's outstanding performer Peter Odemwingie, who was then hauled down by Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina for the dramatic winner two minutes from time.

Hodgson was in no mood for gloating or points-scoring when I asked him had he gleaned any extra pleasure from the victory against the club he was not considered good enough for.

"I made a lot of friends at Liverpool," he told me. "I have a lot of time and respect for the players while the coaching staff worked very loyally for me, so I don't take any particular pleasure at all in that.

"The great pleasure I take is in beating Liverpool Football Club as I know this is something we don't do very often, but we did it, and we did it deservedly."

Hodgson did not make many friends among Liverpool's fans and the scorn they still retain for the former manager was evident in a banner in the visitors' section that read: "Thanks For The Grey Hair Roy."

No such discontent around The Hawthorns as Albion's supporters gave Hodgson a hero's reception after watching them rise to 12th in the Premier League and demonstrate the neat, organised football that was a hallmark of his success at Fulham, as opposed to his struggles at Liverpool.

Odemwingie's pace terrorised Liverpool and sparked the uncertainty that led to the two spot-kicks, while Chris Brunt is an energetic and creative force who will be a pivotal figure for Hodgson.

Dalglish, whose permanent appointment should be confirmed soon despite this setback, will do his major work in the summer and even here his plans were disrupted by those early injury departures.

He has started to put rebuilding blocks in place in attack with Luis Suarez and Andy Carroll - but the pair enjoy contrasting fortunes.

Uruguayan Suarez looks worth every penny of the £23m handed over to Ajax, a menacing presence throughout. He almost snatched an equaliser twice in stoppage time, first with a shot that was superbly saved by keeper Scott Carson and then a lob headed off the line by Nicky Shorey.

Carroll, the £35m arrival from Newcastle United, struggled throughout and was sidetracked early on by rough treatment from Albion's defence and the taunts from the home gallery.

And once he picked up a booking from referee Martin Atkinson, who did little to protect him early on, Carroll was a subdued figure, short of fitness and perhaps fearful of that second yellow card.

Dalglish will nurture a style that still needs reconstruction and refinement and his best days are ahead - because this was not one of them.

Whether he wanted to play along with the plotline or not, this was Hodgson's day. He expressed quiet delight with his triumph but few could forgive him, or begrudge him, for dancing a little inside.

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Comments

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  • Comment number 1.

    Doubt Liverpool would be any different had Roy stayed if truth be told. Bit like Man City had they retained Hughes.
    Well done to Hodgson - he made 1 big mistake, losing to Everton and not holding his hands up.
    Phil - I'd like to draw your attention to another former Liverpool manager and my team's plight. An whether you think Houllier is still right for Villa as per your post some months ago bearing in mind the number of big mistakes he has made already reads like a Stephen King horror novel.
    I'd wager that a Hodgson managed Villa would be above a Houllier (or Dalglish for that matter) managed Liverpool

  • Comment number 2.

    Liverpool's obsession with 'King' Kenny will only get them so far. As long as they've got this dreadful squad and sub-standard ground, they will go no further than the Fulhams and Stokes of this world.

  • Comment number 3.

    Happy for Roy - I still rate him as a manager par excellence. It was a shame it didn't work out at Anfield but at least he's got the chance to show his true qualities at a club that is still on the verge of being a true Premier League club. I think knowledgeable Baggies fans quickly lightened up after the shock departure of di Matteo when they got Roy, knowing what he achieved at Fulham. I think the Baggies could become a contender for Europa League football and emulate Fulham's achievements.

    As for Liverpool, to be honest, their season was pretty much over once they made it to 6th and got knocked out of the FA and Carling Cups, once Birmingham City won the Carling Cup and Bolton and Stoke drew each other in one semi. Dalglish is very much going to be Liverpool's manager for the next few years and the rebuilding process will begin now. It's clear there are players in the squad who have to go like Skrtel and Krygriakos and players like Kelly, Wilson and Ayala have to be given the chance to press for that centre back role alongside the aging Jamie Carragher, while the club go for players like Simon Kjaer.

  • Comment number 4.

    Two injuries early on which severely weakened the back line plus two penalties which in other games may not have been given and there's the game handed on a plate to WBA. (Another) woeful display by Atkinson and by Liverpool's midfield didn't help. Kuyt was obviously bagged from the mid week game. The service that Suarez and Carroll received was far from effective but the formers initiative and fitness made up for it whereas Carroll hasn't got the legs yet to make up for some of his team mates failings. The Liverpool roller coaster continues.

  • Comment number 5.

    4. At 00:26am on 3rd Apr 2011, isangari wrote:
    Two injuries early on which severely weakened the back line plus two penalties which in other games may not have been given and there's the game handed on a plate to WBA. (Another) woeful display by Atkinson and by Liverpool's midfield didn't help. Kuyt was obviously bagged from the mid week game. The service that Suarez and Carroll received was far from effective but the formers initiative and fitness made up for it whereas Carroll hasn't got the legs yet to make up for some of his team mates failings. The Liverpool roller coaster continues.

    -----------------------------------------------------------------
    Stop being so bitter and admit the best team won! Our striker, who we bought for 2.5 million, was head and shoulders above both of your strikers both who cost over 10 times as much. When will Liverpool fans realise they are not the club they once were?

  • Comment number 6.

    The Liverpool roller coaster continues.

    ---

    Liverpool have now lost 10 out of their 16 league games away from Anfield.

    It's not really a rollercoaster - you can predict that they'll win or draw most of their home games and fail abysmally away from home.

  • Comment number 7.

    Baggieholt: where's the "bitter"? Two key injuries - Fact. Two iffy penalties - Fact. Two Liverpool players described as being "bagged" - Fact. Liverpool midfield performance described as "woeful" - Fact. No comments such as "lucky' "undeserved" etc being pushed at WBA - Fact. So where is the "bitter"? As for Liverpool fans not realising where their team is "at" these days: look at the Liverpool websites and then see if you can find a fan who has any illusions about the state of the squad that we have. When we get the Greek coming on as a sub' any opposition forward is going to look good, and if he has any skill such as Odemwingle, then he'll look really good. Bitter? No. Frustrated? Yes.

  • Comment number 8.

    Dan: the roller coaster is in the nature of the performances which vary from exhilarating (at home MU + away and at home Chelsea) to mediocre (today + others) to abysmal (away West Ham + too many others). It's one thing to lose a match, it's another when it's with some of this seasons performances where we look like a bunch of blokes who were given a red strip and told to go and play.

  • Comment number 9.

    Liverpool's squad at the end of last year when Gerrard and Torres were absent lacked any quality at all, at times it was a shocking full of underperforming, undertalented and overrated players. Give Maxi Rodriguez, Raul Meireles, Joe Cole and the new Suarez/Carroll combo, they've signed well and definitely improved on that. Still they need a Gerrard for the future or who knows where they'll slide to.

  • Comment number 10.

    A deserved win to WBA, no one is taking it away from them. It doesn't cancel the fact that certain events in the course of the match changed the game, as rightfully put by 'isangari' above.

    Does it make Roy Hodgson a better manager than Kenny Dalglish? No, as far as I am concerned... besides, a statement that Roy escapes Dalglish's shadow is largely pointless. That would be similar to a statement that Jose Mourinho is now outshadowed by a Sporting Gigon manager.

  • Comment number 11.

    Looking at the statistics really shows how delusional certain liverpool fans are about Hodgson's reign and "King Kenny"'s reign. Hodgson won 13 out of 31 games in charge of Liverpool, which works out at approximately 42%. After the game today Dalglish's his win to game ratio is just under 44% (7 in 16). Kenny has improved Liverpool's win ratio by less than 2%. Not exactly massive.............

  • Comment number 12.

    How on earth were the penalties "iffy" they were both nailed on, the second was as clear a decision as you'll see. Dalglish is getting a free pass from Liverpool fans if Hudson had turned up and suggested selling Tories to Chelsea and paying £35million for Andy Carroll he'd have been chased out of Afield before his backside had touched.the.bench.

  • Comment number 13.

    ASliceOfGoodFortune, so you think you'd be able to convince ANY Liverpool fan that Roy Hodgson was actually a good and proper manager for Liverpool FC? Thanks, but we prefer to stay delusional.

    Kenny Dalglish, I am sure, knows exactly what needs to be done for strengthening the club. The thing is, we trust him, and have faith in him. You may call us deluded, if you like... but would we care?

  • Comment number 14.

    RedddRussian, if the facts can't convince them then I guess I have no chance. It certainly doesn't bother me; your loss is our gain and we're very happy to have Hodgson as manager. Its just interesting that even though there is pretty much no improvement in the amount of games won, DESPITE the crazy amount of money Dalglish has been allowed to spend in the previous transfer window (a luxury Hodgson didn't have) that the perception is Dalglish is doing a fantastic job where Hodgson didn't. It simply doesn't add up.

  • Comment number 15.

    ASliceOfGoodFortune, we were in the relegation zone when Kenny took over, we are now a few points behind the top 4. And that, playing with missing key players (Gerrard, Agger, Kelly, Carra was missing for quite a while too, now Johnson.. the new guys hardly played 3 games together, as Carroll was injured too, and not fully fit yet) And why do you care how much Dalglish has spent? and you drop the fact how much he made from selling a certain 'misfiring striker', too He hasn't spend the taxpayors' money on that, has he...
    Good luck with Roy, all I can say. And I mean it. I hope your players don't start to hate football in half a year time.

  • Comment number 16.

    1. You were 13th when Dalglish took over, thats not the relegation zone.
    2. You are now 3 points closer to the top 4 than when Dalglish took over, but Man City and Chelsea's form has decreased over the second half of the season. It's hardly the massive improvement you make it out to be; which links to the first point I made. Hodgsons record vs Dalglish's record is really not that different.

    About our players hating football in half a years time, is that some reference to "hoofball" tactics? Because there was only really one team who couldve been accused of that yesterday, and they werent in blue and white. The whole point of having Carroll in the team seems to be to hit it over the top again and again to him. Suarez was a breath of fresh air in what was by all accounts a fantastic demonstration of boring football by liverpool.
    Good luck to your team too, and I hope you dont start hating watching football after the inevitable hoof and hope tactics your team will be employing with Carroll up front.

  • Comment number 17.

    I was worried that Liverpool would give Roy time and money to build a strong side. I was so relived when he was hounded out of the club and replaced with Kenny, he panders to the 'we're only a few signings off being great again' crowd, and will get them no where for a few years before quietly leaving when he loses his smile or why ever it was he left last time.

  • Comment number 18.

    I remember when Fergie pointed out the fact that when Leeds united started falling away losing to just about everyone, unless they played Manchester united, they would play like champions, thus cheating their manager.The criticism Fergie got for that was hilarious. He must have loved it.The Liverpool Players are on the same track and look what happened to Leeds!

  • Comment number 19.

    #18 - I believe that's now known as Danny Murphy Syndrome.

  • Comment number 20.

    dunno, if 20 points from 11 games under Dalglish is 'almost equal' to 22 points from 20 games under Hodgson doesn't make a statistical difference? I am not good at stuts... whatever..

  • Comment number 21.

    IMO, the seeds of Hodgson's downfall were in his complete inability to do a proper Liverpool FC Press Conference. Anyway, best of luck to him, tbh I've already airbrushed his tenure from my memory. We move on!

  • Comment number 22.

    Hodgson is a good manager when in charge of a team who has low/average aspirations, but when in charge of a larger club he has shown he cannot cope (as with both Inter and Liverpool). He is very good at what he does, managing a middle club to safety and beyond, but further than that he adds very little because he is too conservative.
    As for Liverpool, they need to further strengthen in the summer before they realistically consider themselves a challenger for the title. Suarez and Carroll look good but they need better service and back up than what they already have. I also think the defence could do with strengthening. Carragher is good but getting old, while Agger is injury prone, and Skrtel is inconsistent. I think the likes of Young, Hazard, Kjaer and Lukaku could make a massive difference to the current squad.

  • Comment number 23.

    Please, oh please do not come on these boards and lecture us Liverpool fans about our own club.
    We watch every match from start to finish, every press conference, every story, analysing every little detail that goes on at the club.
    So, would you very kindly stop telling us foolish we are to throw our support behind Kenny and to have turned on Hodgson.
    There's no point bringing up this argument, Hodgson got it completely wrong at Liverpool in every department and having been to several games with both managers, believe you me, the difference is clear. Facts aren't everything and if you all who have commented on Liverpool so freely have also been to several games under each manager, I'll take your opinion more seriously, if not keep it to yourselves, we don't judge your supporter's wisdom.

  • Comment number 24.

    Really enjoyed the match and was delighted to see West Brom pick up a much needed win. I'm not a West Brom fan but I do enjoy a lot of their games.

    Have to say, Odemwingie and Brunt were both outstanding. I've been a big fan of Brunt for as long as I remember seeing him play and have always thought he would move to a slightly bigger club (no offence intended to West Brom). For me, Odemwingie has been one of the signings of the season. Whenever I have watched him play he has never stopped running and attacking defenses, scoring goals and providing them. He is a player we have the fortune of watching after the racial abuse he suffered in Russia. He is clearly a top player and their loss is our gain in the Premier League.

    I think Roy Hodgson is a very good manager and definitely more suited to a club like this, although I think many have exaggerated the difference Dalglish has made for Liverpool. Personally, I don't see too much has changed since his arrival, apart from the obvious 'big' wins against United and Chelsea etc...

    Suarez is a great buy. If he was there from the start Hodgson would have had a lot more success. Let's face it, he had a sulking has-been in Torres and David Ngog (not saying Torres isn't good, but he wasn't doing anything for Liverpool. Don't need to say anything about Ngog). Hodgson also had to go through the takeover and that would have been hard with all the bad press surrounding the club.

    I'm sure having a club legend like Dalglish watching over every game isn't going to help and Dalglish knew that. For the best interests of the club, I think having your clubs supporters chanting the name of the man they want to replace you, whilst he sits in the box above you, is never going to help the team win games.

  • Comment number 25.

    Really enjoyed the match and was delighted to see West Brom pick up a much needed win. I'm not a West Brom fan but I do enjoy a lot of their games.

    Have to say, Odemwingie and Brunt were both outstanding. I've been a big fan of Brunt for as long as I remember seeing him play and have always thought he would move to a slightly bigger club (no offence intended to West Brom). For me, Odemwingie has been one of the signings of the season. Whenever I have watched him play he has never stopped running and attacking defenses, scoring goals and providing them. He is a player we have the fortune of watching after the racial abuse he suffered in Russia. He is clearly a top player and their loss is our gain in the Premier League.

    I think Roy Hodgson is a very good manager and definitely more suited to a club like this, although I think many have exaggerated the difference Dalglish has made for Liverpool. Personally, I don't see too much has changed since his arrival, apart from the obvious 'big' wins against United and Chelsea etc...

    Suarez is a great buy. If he was there from the start Hodgson would have had a lot more success. Let's face it, he had a sulking has-been in Torres and David Ngog (not saying Torres isn't good, but he wasn't doing anything for Liverpool. Don't need to say anything about Ngog). Hodgson also had to go through the takeover and that would have been hard with all the bad press surrounding the club.

    I'm sure having a club legend like Dalglish watching over every game isn't going to help and Dalglish knew that. For the best interests of the club, I think having your clubs supporters chanting the name of the man they want to replace you, whilst he sits in the box above you, is never going to help the team win games

  • Comment number 26.

    The thing that did for Hodgson wasn't Dalglish - it was incidents like the time he was asked about rumours United were coming in for Fernando, (a recurring annual event, much like Easter and Christmas).

    Instead of dismissing the idea out of hand he started waxing prolific about how United were such a huge club with so much power, wealth and status, once they'd set their heart on one of your players there was little you could do.

    In one go he'd surrendered to an old enemy before they'd fired a shot, 'sold' a player the fans considered a god, declared United to be giants, and reduced Liverpool to the status of Fulham, (no offence).

  • Comment number 27.

    I'm a big fan of Hodgeson and I'm thrilled for him, after the result of the game.
    I also however sympathise with Liverpool for their current predicament (far from based on just this game, mainly because i think west brom deserve a lot of credit). Watching them a few years back in the CL and competing for the title is something I miss, despite being a Spurs fan. They used to be a fantastic team to watch- just see the famous CL final come back, its rare to get the spirit that team had.

    Looking at the team now I think it is pretty clear that there is a lot of work for Kenny, and i think he is the right man for the job. If any club is going to go through a refurbishment so to speak, it should be handled by someone who the supporters trust, and this is obviously the case with Dalglish.
    I think Hodgeson could have been the guy to take them forward, but he was a victim of circumstances and a tad unlucky. Sincerely hope that West Brom do well though, Roy deserves a break, and not least his credibility back!

  • Comment number 28.

    Good point by 5# Phil, why aren't you and the rest of the press banging the drum to chants of how much the Liverpool strike force cost compared to the 2.5m West Brom paid for Peter Odemwingie. When I read a story about Man City, it more often than not seems every noun is preceded by a money related adjective, not to mention re-inforcing adverbs, and expected that the expenditure should correlate with results and position in the table. I felt your reporting was defensively generous yesterday, with extended mitigating circumstances affording Kenny a longer honeymoon than Roy was afforded, while City haven't even had a honeymoon.

    I'm glad for West Brom that things seem to be working out with Roy because they play good football. I'm also glad they stopped Liverpool from getting 3 points, because you might not have noticed that City and Spurs have been stuttering big time in the League and Liverpool would only have been 5 points off 4th place with City still to go to Anfield. I can't say whether the football's improved under Kenny, but I can say I think he's been pocketing more 3 pointers than Roy, and is why they are in such a position, and I would put this down to their management.

    I wasn't convinced about Luis Suarez from what I saw in the World Cup, and though I haven't seen yesterday's game, I altered my tack after seeing his performance against Man Utd, particularly that mazey run for Kuyt's first. Reminded me of a goal I scored playing with my mates at University! However, I remain to be convinced that Andy Carroll is anything like a 35m player. No doubt this statement will come back to haunt me when City play Liverpool after the Sunderland game today.

    A huge match for City today. If things don't go according to plan, I'll be watching the colours and shades of the words the BBC journalists choose to report it.

  • Comment number 29.

    (a big fan of Hodgson, that supposedly cannot spell his name correctly)*

  • Comment number 30.

    The first match I watched this season was Liverpool v WBA back in August: Liverpool played worse (their play was disjointed and lacklustre, no spirit) in that game then they did today. They won 1-0 (Torres ) when a draw would have been a fair result. Today there was a slightly better performance (still very far from the Top 4 level) but there was more "spirit" - this is the difference that KD has made. As I said earlier, losing is one thing, losing with an abject lack of concern is another. It's not just the lack of points but the manner that they were lost that alienated Hodgson from many of the Liverpool fans. This repeated jibe about 'Pool fans being delusional is a joke, look at the LFC website and read the comments. Today's situation didn't occur overnight, it goes back to at least the tenure of Souness, and no one person is going to turn it around within the space of half a season. The deal with RH was that it didn't appear he would ever turn it around whereas with KD we think we have a chance. We could be wrong but it's our opinion to make - so the rest of you worry or gloat about your own club while we get stressed out about ours.

  • Comment number 31.

    Thank God we shall have some more German coaches coming to our shores, and at the very least they can speak the language better than the likes of Ferguson or Redknapp.

  • Comment number 32.

    Hodgson's problem's at Liverpool where that he was left a very poor squad which is going to take several transfer windows to fully fix and the fact that a significant percentage of Liverpool fans never wanted him, gave him no chance and plenty of abuse.

    In those circumstances, with the press looking to ramp up the problems it's almost impossible to get the players playing at 100% and makes the naysayers work a self fulfilling prophecy.

    It was best for everyone when he moved on and if he has some bitterness towards the kop then it's fully justified because they were partly responsible for the problems he was trying to deal with.

    Dalgleish is the right man right now. Because he is popular he has been able to get rid of the underperforming Torres and start the very necessary overhaul of the squad.

    One off performances against ManU & Chelski may keep the fans happy for now but to win the league, you need to perform against sides like West Brom which isn't happening at present.

    It will probably take another 12 months before Liverpool are really competetive again. It will be good to see them back.

  • Comment number 33.

    What a load of rubbish being spouted by some of the posters on here, most of whom have only come on to take the chance to have a dig at the club they hate and have spent a lifetime being jealous of.

    Hodgson was pathetic at LFC and should have been sacked much sooner. Listening to him bleat that 'we had played our best football' in the post-match interviews after we had just been beaten was embarrassing, and hearing him say that other teams could come and buy our best players and we couldn't stop them was even worse. He was clearly out of his depth.

    Beating LFC was a one off performance brought about by us having a bad day at the office, and has very little to do with hodgson getting anything right..!

  • Comment number 34.

    Number 26

    Check out your fixation with Man UTD. All Hodgson was doing was telling the world that if you want to buy Torres you better get out a massive cheque book. Dalglish sells him to another title rival and you have no complaint, Hodgson dares to suggest Utd could buy him if they use all their resources as a massive club (which they are) and you condem him. Meanwhile you use 60% of the proceeds from Torres on a player that one day might be as good as Duncan Ferguson. The Leeds analogy in an earlier post summed it up!

  • Comment number 35.

    I understand there was gossip to be born at The Hawthorns yesterday but wouldn't Phil McNulty prefer to be at Upton Park yesterday? :)

  • Comment number 36.

    Liverpool, bestest fans in the universe!

  • Comment number 37.

    4.
    At 00:26am on 3rd Apr 2011, isangari wrote:
    Two injuries early on which severely weakened the back line plus two penalties which in other games may not have been given and there's the game handed on a plate to WBA. (Another) woeful display by Atkinson and by Liverpool's midfield didn't help. Kuyt was obviously bagged from the mid week game. The service that Suarez and Carroll received was far from effective but the formers initiative and fitness made up for it whereas Carroll hasn't got the legs yet to make up for some of his team mates failings. The Liverpool roller coaster continues.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    You must be an F1 driver! The list of excuses is incredible!
    - two injuries
    - two questionable penalties
    - Carroll's fitness
    - Kuyt bagged from the midweek game

    You just like to blame things which Liverpool can't control (injuries, ref, tiredness), rather than looking at things Liverpool can control (their actions). Typical loser mentality- blame everything but yourself!

    Well done Roy, btw!

  • Comment number 38.

    Phil McNulty really has to give Carroll some time to adapt to the different tactical system and pressure at Liverpool, they have a very good formation, it's shaped flawlessly and I really think it's served them richly. Carroll's presence offers Liverpool extra dimensions in attack so we can scan his situation really from a more positive angle.
    As for Hudgson, he can relish in victory but he's been presented with a graphic illustration of how little his wealth of experience had reaped for him in football, he's spent much of his high-scaled yet low-profile managerial career operating in the higher-tiers of eastern European leagues, an unsuccessful stint at Inter compared to Inter's modern-day triumphs and riches, and yes he was a clever operator at Fulham but that was a semi-existing low, disregarded club with little media interest or attraction, and without an illustrious history.
    You cannot be seriously signing Koncheskey or Poulsen when both are aging in a career that didn't even reach the pinnacle heights promised, they were flops as younger players, and they were incredibly costly flops for Liverpool. Hudgson was terrible and devastating weight for Liverpool to be burdened with, the King has put some structure, injected energy and renewed momentum. Liverpool's season has prospered under him and it's like they're on an endless supply of positives and highs.

  • Comment number 39.

    1. Paul Konchesky
    2. Christian Puolsen
    3. Describing pitiful Goodison performance as "the best since i've been here"
    4. Describing Northampton Town of League Two as "Very tough opposition and we have to be wary" We went out of the cup.
    5. Telling fans "we will have to cross that bridge when we come to it" if Man United ever came in for Torres.
    6. Warning us to be wary of Wolves when we play them at home. Wolves had the worst away record in all the four leagues. We lost 1-0.
    7. Telling the press he had inherited a poor squad and we will struggle against relegation until he had stamped his authority on the side. We had finished 7th last season, not 17th.
    8. Describing away wins in a qualifier in Turkey and a lucky late win at Bolton as "famous victories".
    9. Route one turgid football, containing lumping the ball up from the back straight to an uninspired Torres, prompting the likes of Reina and Agger to be publicly annoyed with the managers tactics. Leading to 10000 empty seats at a home game V Bolton.
    10. Telling the press that he had not made a bid for Van Der Vaart because "what actually happened was I was offered Van Der Vaart by his agent, but I told him he was not the type of player we were interested in".

    Phil, his reign was ended by himself, and nothing to do with Kenny.

  • Comment number 40.

    love the Fergie-Leeds analogy and it does sum up Pool these days

    '9. Route one turgid football....'

    Lucky you got Carroll now eh.......(!)

  • Comment number 41.

    Isn't it time to give it a rest talking about Hodgson at Liverpool and Dalglish after Hodgson? If it reminds of something is housewives talking about non issues having a tea. Hodgson is doing a good job at West Bromwich, well on the way to save them from relegation, while Dalglish appears to be entrusted with the cash required to rebuild Liverpool.

    What I saw yesterday at The Hawthorns was 3 things really:
    a) Carroll needs games to complete his rehabilitation but, still, I see him play with a smile and, besides whatever they say about his temperament, he was disciplined yesterday and avoided a second yellow card
    b) Liverpool looked weak in defence after Agger and Johnson left the pitch; they also need a winger, desperately
    c) West Brom played like a unit with a purpose, with clear directions and instructions, during the game and deservedly won in the end.

    Dalglish has his work cut out but I'm sure he knew it when he decided to cut his holidays short in Dubai and returned to take the reigns of the club that made him a legend.

    I believe Liverpool desperately need at least a midfielder, a full back and a winger and I am certain that Dalglish has a clear mind in terms of the requirements needed to be filled, in order to see his team play football the way he wants them to. If Reina leaves, they will also need a keeper. Just, it isn't only that. Liverpool need covers in defence, the midfield, the wings. It will take time to get the right players and it will take time for the players to blend together and become a unit.

    Still, what's required most at Liverpool, I think, it is a stadium that holds 60,000+ seats, in order to be able to compete with the elite of English football. It appears the intention is there, if they started looking for sponsors regarding the name of the stadium. Time will tell.

    It would be nice to see a solid contract given to Dalglish as a form of support in his quest to revive the fortunes of the club, as it seems like an insult that they're still thinking about it. Even the bank saw improvements and wants him a manager there.

    The news of the day was elsewhere, though and that "elsewhere" is a combination of Upton Park, Britannia Stadium and The Emirates.

  • Comment number 42.

    'they were flops as younger players,'

    no they weren't as they weren't exactly hyped up or billed to be the next big thing, like Carroll. They were expected to be average/mediocre players and guess what? thats what they are.

    'an unsuccessful stint at Inter compared to Inter's modern-day triumphs and riches'

    They (Inter) haven't had success (inc. top tier European success) like they have had lately since the 60s. He may not have been a outstanding success at Inter but he didn't do that bad a job, considering the state Inter were in. Only a year or two before he took the job at Inter, they were close to getting relegated.

  • Comment number 43.

    #39 highlights some of the many reasons Hodgson had to go, all of his own making, but the appointment of Dalglish will be just as damaging in the long term.

    A sentimental appointment, rather than a pragmatic one. This time next year I really can't see Liverpool being in any better a position then they are now. Worse, if Reina is allowed to leave in the summer - which is almost certainly will be.

    That will mean each of the last four transfer windows Liverpool has lost one of the best players, with the previous three being - Torres, Mascherano and Alonso.

    If Hodgson proved a point yesterday, it was only to underline that Liverpool are now one of the 6th-10th place teams in the division rather than one of the top four. Something for which he must take some blame. And something Dalglish almost certainly won't be able to prevent.

  • Comment number 44.

    @39 Yes mate, you nailed it there.

    Hodgson's tenure as manager clearly demonstrated he was not suited to the job at Liverpool.

    He's in his element now, which is fighting for draws - and that's what he couldn't see past at Liverpool.

    As for the article - what a load of old guff :o))

  • Comment number 45.

    To RedddRussian...I think you're misinterpreting what I have said. At no point have I suggested Hodgson is a better manager than Dalglish. I have stated that he stepped out of his shadow yesterday at just the right time for WBA - but also stressed how Dalglish is much more suited to managing Liverpool than Hodgson.

    To kopgilly...yes, as I say it was signings of the calibre of Poulsen and Konchesky that contributed to his downfall. I do agree with Hodgson, however, that it was difficult for him that the fans' preferred candidate was someone who vies with Bill Shankly and Bob Paisley as one of the most towering figures in the club's history. Hardly Dalglish's fault that, though.

    The easiest way for Hodgson to banish the shadow of Dalglish at Anfield was to win football matches and he didn't win enough. I do have some sympathy for Hodgson in that some circumstances did conspire against him, but ultimately he simply didn't do well enough.

    In my opinion Hodgson looked much more at home at WBA yesterday, admittedly after a very satisfying win, than he did at Liverpool.

    WBA fans...has Hodgson brought significant changes to your club and Liverpool fans - should Dalglish be given the job permanently now and what does he need to do in the summer to put Liverpool back near the top of the Premier League?

    Do WBA fans feel Hodgson will keep you up?

    To Drooper_ Agree Odemwingie is a real handful. Fast and direct and very good value. And while Suarez is right at the top end of the market, I think he might be worth every penny of the £23m Liverpool paid for him as well.

    As for Andy Carroll, very early days and he is still well short of match fitness

  • Comment number 46.

    Woy was never given a fair crack at LFC, by the fans, the players or the owners. He was a sitting duck and the stench of this permeated the club and wasn't removed until Woy was relieved of his position.

    I'm pleased that he has regained his aura to some degree but I felt no sympathy for him as this would be difficult following his massive severance pay. Although it has cost him a crack at the England job.

    Well done Woy.

  • Comment number 47.

    It's all rather churlish and boring the yap yap yapping about Hodgson and Dalglish. As a Liverpool fan I would much rather congratulate WBA for a great performance and a well deserved win. Liverpool are still very Jekyl and Hyde at the moment, great one week, rubbish the next. The rebuilding continues and I guess will not be over for some time. Shame the same few mancs have to come on these blogs for a little dig, haven't you got homework to finish?

  • Comment number 48.

    Great result for woy, shut up a few scousers that's for sure. no doubt they didn't even give him a chance on merseyside. the so-called 'great, loyal fans' went missing for a few months! anway, they got what they deserved yesterday.

  • Comment number 49.

    In trying to get into McNulty's mind on Friday - no offense meant - I would identified 4 football grounds to attend the game and write about it.

    1. The leaders were expected to be tested at Upton Park where they were thumped in the Carling Cup and losing points there, might wide open the title race;
    2. Chelsea seem to be moving upwards after the acquisition of Luiz (and Torres) and beat United but, still, the drew against Copenhagen, Everton and Fulham recently while they lost at home by Liverpool;
    3. Wenger had just indicated that April is a new beginning for Arsenal, taking heart of them having only Premiership now and able to not be destructed in their pursuit of winnning the title. An emphatic win in their easiest fixture of the run in, in conjunction with a surprise at Upton Park might be the news of the day;
    4. (and) of course, there was the opportunity to rub it on the Dalglish v Hodgson issue.

    Although I do understand the reason for choosing the rubbing (smiles around), I think it was the wrong option as this is the run-in to the Premiership title and West Brom v Liverpool was a lesser fixture in this run-in(no offence).

    I suppose this view is supported by the mass absense of Chelsea and Arsenal fans, from responses to this article, as it appears for understandable reasons - both sets of fans must surely feel like having been punched under the belt.

    What I don't understand is why you don't understand that the world doesn't evolve about Liverpool. They're reconstructing, they're out of the limelight and this is the run-in to the Premier League title.

  • Comment number 50.

    3 good points for the Baggies. And Hodgson. (Who is and was always more suited to a "smaller" club).

    BUT WBA have some horrible fixtures still to come.. and I wouldn't put my mortgage on them surviving the drop yet!





  • Comment number 51.

    The received wisdom - that 'King Kenny' will restore Liverpool to their lofty perch - is a curious thing. Liverpool now are more akin to the Newcastle inherited by Kenny after 'King Kev's' departure, than the dominant Liverpool he inherited first time round, or the cash-rich Blackburn he left for. Kenny took Newcastle to mid-table obscurity. I think the same awaits Liverpool.

    Incidentally, odd that their sponsors have such low aspirations. As I understand it, despite timing issues, the Champions League (a misnomer if ever there was one) is well followed in Asia.

  • Comment number 52.

    @ 47,

    "Shame the same few mancs have to come on these blogs for a little dig, haven't you got homework to finish?"

    Since I finished with education all the way and this is a Sunday morning, let me remind you a few things.

    1. Liverpool fans take pride of being so knowledgeable of the game but, still, have been making jokes about Lucas, every week, since he arrived at Anfield. Yet, we see him being an important player in the Brazil team by more than one managers. Of course, Liverpool are too big a club for Brazil internationals.
    2. You have been loathing on Hodgson from day one, rubbishing his signings in your blindness, in the face of having dropped out of top four. Yet, you failed to realise that there was no cash available for Roy to make expensive signings and what is even more strange is the fact that you still adore Rafa Benitez, besides having almost lead you to bancruptsy, due to countless non-sense signings over the seasons he's been at your club.
    3. You forget to acknowledge that the light improvement of the results of Liverpool have been helped with the acquisition of two players that cost you £58m, having relieved yourselves from a famous international who didn't want to play for you anymore.
    4. Burning t-shirts of a player who moved on, rubbishing him on every opportunity after he left, rubbishing your last manager on every opportunity - while you appear to still have affection to the previous one that almost destroyed you as a club - being a great help in destroying the confidence of a Brazil international and pointing the finger to Poulsen and Konciesky signings, ignoring conveniently who signed Meireles for you are signs of kids who should be doing their school homework, instead of visiting these blogs on the day before a new school week starts.

  • Comment number 53.

    There seems to be a lot of nonsense written above about Liverpool and Hodgson. Predictably few Liverpool fans appear anywhere near as deluded as the opinions of other clubs fans regarding their own club.

    Hodgsons errors were fairly lengthy for the short period of time he was there. Infact it seemed to be quite an achievement. He turned out as popular as Jacques Santini was at Spurs. There was firstly a complete lack of approach in trying to get the fans on board. Many fans did want Dalglish but Roy could have gone on the charm offensive after the promising performance against Arsenal at the start of the season. He obviously couldn't be bothered and infact seemingly spent the next 3 months telling everyone about his great track record over 30 years - Neuchâtel Xamax, UAE, Orebo etc etc. Not to mention his fairly woeful time at Blackburn and Inter. Ask Blackburn and Inter fans whether they understand the Liverpool fans opinions before you ask others. It was this 30 year history that must have led to Liverpools "famous win in Trabzonspur" this season, as Roy famously quoted. Really? Wow. If you want to win the fans over, i guess you probably first need to understand what is and isn't a famous win which you would probably learn by trying to appreciate a club rather than expecting the club to appreciate and change to be about you. I often watched the Liverpool games this season just to catch Roy on the interviews. They were wildly more entertaining than what he would set up on the pitch. Cringeworthy and embarassingly funny time after time - not normally would you would expect.

    He bought in players that he must have had lined up in his mind for Fulham. They weren't suited to a team trying to get settled and with an slight chance of trying to break into the top four. Any outside chance of the latter happening was soon taken care of by some of the worst performances in the Premier League this season. Not all of the signings that Liverpool made over the past couple of seasons were down to the managers as any followers of the detail of Benitez's final days would know. The marquee signings of Joe Cole and Raul Meireles were merely given loose approval by Roy which would have been the same for Benitez had he stayed on. We shouldn't forget the shocking state of affairs at the top of the football club prior to October/November. However, some of the awful decisions this year were entirely down to Roy - releasing Insua and Aquilani on loan, signing back the previously released (and still to this day injury prone) Aurelio, wasting money on Brad Jones, Paul Konchesky and Poulsen. Roy can go on and on about inheriting Benitez's side, but if you were a Liverpool fan looking at the January transfer window with Roy in charge, you'd rightly be panicking considering what he had previously done.

    People above have said that Hodgson didn't have the money to spend on Suarez and Carroll. Well neither would Dalglish had the first months of the season not been such a disaster. I guess Liverpool fans have that much to thank of Hodgson - he made Torres finally go, leaving money for replacements who wanted to put some effort in. Is Suarez worth the money? It appears likely he will be. Is Carroll? Lets wait and see - the pro's seem to think he will be and they probably know more than a lot of us.

    Roys main selling points at the start of the season was that he was English and he'd had a good season in English football after 30 years of preparation.

    I think there will be a lot of changes at Liverpool in the summer and most Liverpool fans you speak to seem to have an idea of whats needed - left back, centre back, width, support striker, new steel in central midfield, probably a new keeper and depth. For Liverpool fans to repeatedly provide a similar list thats so large is proof enough for me that their fans aren't the ones deluded about their current state of affairs at Anfield

  • Comment number 54.

    Makes a change for your blog to be about 2 mid-table teams and not one of the top teams........

  • Comment number 55.

    @52 I think there were a group of 3 chavs filmed burning a Torres shirt on Sky. 3 chavs does not equal the support of a club like Liverpool, United etc etc. Far, far more Liverpool and United fans get caught up throwing insults at each other about Munich and Hillsborough. The incident of burning a shirt surely fails into nothingness compared to those actions of both groups of supporters yet we wouldn't tar all fans with the one brush for that.

    Your understanding of the dislike of Hodgson by Liverpool fans is immensely deluded and based on nothing other than laziness

  • Comment number 56.

    "ASliceOfGoodFortune, so you think you'd be able to convince ANY Liverpool fan that Roy Hodgson was actually a good and proper manager for Liverpool FC? Thanks, but we prefer to stay delusional.

    Kenny Dalglish, I am sure, knows exactly what needs to be done for strengthening the club. The thing is, we trust him, and have faith in him. You may call us deluded, if you like... but would we care?"

    The problem though is that Hodgson never stood a chance. You gave him naff all to spend when he was there, hence poor players like Konchesky and Poulsen coming in. Torres wasnt interested, hence him being sold later on. You only have to look at the fact you allowed Kenny 60 mil to spend on TWO PLAYERS to see who got the backing. Hodgson wouldve bagged you 4 or 5 quality players for that. Carroll is a phenominal waste of money. Good player no doubt, but 35 mil? Try 15 mil. Suarez is a cracking player however and worth every penny

  • Comment number 57.

    'Not to mention his fairly woeful time.... Inter'

    eh? someone who clearly doesn't know what Inter were like in the 90s and thinks the recent success is the norm for Inter. He did well, considering a season or two before Inter were a point or two from getting relegated.

  • Comment number 58.

    Ichi_1 if you think back to when Hodgson was in charge, no he didn't have much money last summer. But then why let Insua go out on loan and sign Konchesky for £m's when the difference between the two is slight? Surely you save the money and buy quality.

    Anyway, had Torres not wanted to go - do you think Dalglish would have been given much money in January? Taking into account the sales of Mascherano and Torres and the signings of Meireles (by Christian Purslow) and Suarez and Carroll, what is Liverpools net spend this season? Probably similar to their net spend over the past x amount of seasons - nil to negative.

  • Comment number 59.

    @ 53, Robh82,

    Is sweet-talk in the ears of the fans of a football club that makes a manager good or bad? Who are you kidding?

    Is it Hodgson's fault that Torres wanted to leave or is it that Liverpool dropped out of top four and there was no money available to buy players and show signs that the club would be back in Champions League football? Are you joking?

    Liverpool F.C. acquired the services of Hodgson in the summer. He wasn't the fans' choice. But can you tell me which world-class managers wanted to come to your club?

    A lot of changes are needed indeed at Liverpool. Is there the cash available though? The club seems to have major problems setting a date for beginning the refurbishment of Anfield or build a new stadium, revenue has decreased dramatically after the exit of Champions League football and there is something called Financial Fair Play hanging over your heads, when it comes to transfers. Will major signings happen or is it that sweet-talk in the ears you just mentioned that's required?

    It's one thing to research Hodgson's career, belittling it. You just forget the state your club was left by Rafa Benitez - it's exactly in this segment of football clubs, capabilities-wise.

  • Comment number 60.

    Two clear penalties....so please despense with the 'lets all feel sorry for Liverpool in the media'...what rubbish.

    And why does Andy Carroll need protection...He is a man mountain towering over everyone, built like a battleship, and considering his history and lack of thought when it comes to hitting people and getting in trouble with the law then frankly your comments are pathetic...but with the media, very predictable!

  • Comment number 61.

    NO49. It is the run in and valid point BUT when a manager leaves, joins another and they play the first time its of interesting note...especially when they hadn't scored in so many games and not won in decades.... all of which changed yesterday. Well done WBA, Roy a nice chap, decent manager and better placed.

    As Liverpool fans i think we are intelligent football supporters and post no39 think shows the multiple reasons why Roy & Liverpool not a match (although i agree he had a hard job with liverpool wanting emotionally KK back, i personally as a life long fan have the fonds goose bump memories of KK playing but was worried it was too long ago for him to come back and i was happy to be wrong).

    to the posts who complain about supporters bemoaning injuries and doggy penalty shouts; behave its football and those injuries did happen, penalty shouts can often go either way and the ref was weak...for one he pointed to corner then to penalty after seeing linesman even though closer and whereas linesman had the strikers back in the way from the situation. Furthermore Carroll was fouled and rough handed but got booked and targeted by the baggies...no moan its football, teams do what they can to get an edge...ref was poor though in my humble opinion.

    to those trying to put liverpool in leeds bag....wishful thinking and you know it...lets just see 7th last year 6th this year; liverpool standard NO. leeds comparison though HAHAHAHA???? still getting and selling 50 plus million in a week...think still shows a team with ambition and drive under KK. To come back to the main point of the blog would Roy have no......did Roy miss out on VdV - yes, would he have sold torres yes but would he have risked 35 on carroll? no. is Carroll worth 35 NO but he and suarez are worth torres and babel. MORE for now and the future as we can get money back on those deals when they leave SO yes sounds silly but in fact it is sensible.

    Liverpool had possibly two of the worst owners in English football, we now it appears a good sensible winning mentality who respect the club and have some decorum and next year the gap will be closed with whatever new sales/hires go on and if you know football at all you can see it coming just as liverpool fans saw our previous owners & Roy were not a match for us. Roy's comments in his short time with us sounded of a relegation fighting team, Liverpool were not, are not, will not be such a team unless someone like him talks and treats it so under his leadership...hence shown the door.

    to annoy many IF two defends hadnt gone off, IF the greek had not made his mistakes, the penalties both hadn't been given and Carroll and Suarez had some more service (tongue in cheek); IF Liverpool had of won we would have been talking of stealing 4th spot with optimism........Good luck to Roy and WBA but i imagine it will go down to the last game of the season for their PL survival....don't you?

  • Comment number 62.

    @57 from someone with not much understanding of Inter at that time and he left that job after such a short time.

  • Comment number 63.

    @Football_uk do you think the Liverpool fans think that success will be created overnight in the summer? Or are you trying to dictate that opinion. The fans seem to have extensive list of players that are needed to get the club progressing. An extensive list of players doesn't come cheap and won't be solved in a season. The fans don't know how much money will be spent in the summer aside from the suggestion given by splashing the cash in January and the owners history of sports in America. The fans appear to be hoping rather than expecting large sweeping changes. Many opposing fans assume the Liverpool fans are expecting rather the hoping. Thats your error as well - assuming and peddling supposed opinions of Liverpool fans which on evidence don't appear to be true.

  • Comment number 64.

    Hodgson hardly masterminded the revenge, we lost 2 of our back 4 in first 20 mins and lost to 2 penalties. We are well rid of Hodgson, he is now at his level. We were just above the relegation zone under him but now fighting for 5th under Kenny.

    Never wanted him and glad he's gone. Thanks for nothing Roy. Maybe you can sign Poulsen and Konchesky off us in the summer!!!

  • Comment number 65.

    @61 Who may I ask is KK ?

  • Comment number 66.

    Oh, Ignore me, I thought it was Kevin Keegan, but its short for King Kenny isnt it.


    God I hate Sunday mornings.

  • Comment number 67.

    @ 55 Robh83,

    "Your understanding of the dislike of Hodgson by Liverpool fans is immensely deluded and based on nothing other than laziness"

    You do show some "attitude" hints with references to "child do your homework instead of visiting blogs", "your opinions are immensely deluded and based on laziness". I will indulge you, though, in giving you proof of what makes fans appear as deluded and not thinking :)

    1. You could argue for as long as you like that it's only a small minority that burnt Torres shirts at Liverpool and it's a media creation for gossip generation. However, the signs are all there: a great player has written history in your club but, as soon as he moved on, your official club 'took away' everything that reminded of him (isn't it to the benefit of Liverpool that great players played for their team?) while Liverpool fans started rubbishing his attributes as a player they adored when he played for them.
    2. As soon as Dalglish got your manager's position, you started referring to him as "King Kenny". Why are you forgetting that he left Liverpool when he failed to win the title with a much better team, he won the title with Blackburn when they were cash rich and when his credentials were tested at Newcastle, he failed miserably? Don't take me wrong, I do believe that he's the best choice as your manager, but this King Kenny bit is way off the mark.
    3. You fail to realise that Hodgson was given the job at your club because there was no money to be spent and everybody at your club knew Liverpool are in transition - everyone but the fans.
    4. You will never wake up from the Rafa years. He took the helm of a team playing attractive football and made them play almost-catenaccio, he destroyed your academy and he made you a worldwide bargain basement (apart from the signings of Torres and Reina). You would see the Liverpool team sheet and you wouldn't find a single English player at times. Even the youth in the team started coming from Spain. Yet, you rubbished the manager who started using English academy talent of yours, from day one.
    5. Fans on these sites got really tired reading Liverpool supporters' comments, totally irrelevant with the topic in hand, in an attempt to change every article to a talk about Liverpool and Hodgson.
    6. The first words of Henry, after buying Liverpool, were that there would be an end to big signings at the club and an approach of building up players would be followed. Yet, you didn't stopped moaning about poor signings one single day.
    7. You have been failing to think why consecutive Brazil managers had Lucas an integral part of the Brazil team, at times when he was the joke and the loath of the day, by the lot of you. He arrived at your club as Brazil player of the year but it didn't stop you from belittling him every single day, faling to think if it's the manager using him wrongly that makes him look so bad.
    8. You have a selective memory when it comes to Hodgson at Liverpool. He didn't buy only Poulsen and Konsciesky. He also brought Meireles there.
    9. You fail to remember which big names in football management wanted to come to Liverpool when Hodgson was appointed.
    10. United fans talking about Hillsborough and Munich? Who do you think you're kidding? United fans have their minds set on a 19th title they're odds-on to celebrate this season. Looking back to history is a chapter that we've been really tired of reading from Liverpool fans.

    Do you really want more? :-)

  • Comment number 68.

    If it wasn't for Villa effectively booting out O'Niell and Everton also having virtually no investment then you could argue that both of these teams would be above Liverpool in the table. The funny thing is that it feels like Liverpool have had a worse season this year than last and yet they are still better off in the table!

    I am no fan of Liverpool trust me, but I genuinely felt sorry for Roy Hodgson with the abysmal treatment he got during his tenure there. At best it was an lukewarm reception from the fans and just because he signed a couple of dud players like Konchesky and Poulsen, he was villified for it. Joe Cole has been ruined by injury since the FA Cup Replay at Southend for my club Chelsea in 2009, so his decline I think has largely been down to that and also not getting as many games as he once did. Wilson and Shelvey were bought for the future, so it is hardly their fault that things failed to click either. Raul Meireles has been the one credible performer that Hodgson signed.

    I seriously don't get why Liverpool supporters rave about Benitez so much! His style of football was cautious and bland, whilst not even being fit to lace the boots of Mourinho in terms of tactical prowess. Mourinho's style of play at times isn't that attractive, but at least he tends to go for something when the backs are against the wall.

  • Comment number 69.

    When Dalglish was appointed, I was skeptical. I thought he'd been away from football for too long and was worried that the wrong decision had been made. I've been proved wrong. He's rejuvenated the squad and that can be seen in the way that we've played since he took over. Things aren't perfect and we have a weak squad in comparison with those we wish to challenge, but the shrewd appointment of Steve Clarke as coach and the good business we did in the transfer window give me cause for optimism. I think Roy Hodgson has acquitted himself with dignity since leaving Liverpool and wish him well at West Brom. He failed to galvanise the squad he had at his disposal and most of his signings were misjudged. Only Meireles has what it takes. Cole, Konchesky and Poulson haven't made the grade. In many ways the timing was bad for Roy as the club was going through an ownership battle, but he didn't inspire the fans or his players in the way that was needed. Nobody was under any illusions about the strength of our squad when he took over, but it was one which was good enough to challenge for the UEFA Cup spots rather than worry about relegation.

  • Comment number 70.

    Dalglish will turn it around. I can see why he wants Charlie Adam: British, also-leader, clinical in dangerous fouls and corners and can send those diagonal crosses to the wingers with precision.

    Liverpool are desperate for at least one winger and a full back. When they fill the right back position and the left wing, I am expecting them to be playing much better. And, when opportunity arises, to find adequate understudies for Carragher and Gerrard. Who knows? Perhaps Reina might be the main source of cash for the next step of investment.

    In all fairness, I can't understand why Dalglish didn't ask/get the manager's job when Rafa Benitez left.

    We shouldn't forget that the Liverpool team also has some young, very British talent in there. Players like Spearing are improving by the day.

    It's a shining Sunday here. Time to go and enjoy the day.

  • Comment number 71.

    To the poster in the middle who claims the title race is exciting, it isn't. United have had it in the bag for a couple of weeks, it's only misguided media and tv pundits who think they can make it out to be an exciting race...The real excitement this season is the relegation dogfight, with still probably 10 teams in it, and with a couple of bad results that could extend to 12 or even 13...

    As for the penalties, they were clear as day penalties, even the MOTD commentator during the commentary said well that's a clear penalty. Linesmen have always been able to tell the ref that he missed something, so quite why there's a sudden surge of oh well blah blah linesmen changed the refs mind, I have no idea...oh hang on it's Liverpool..that once massive famous club, the one that I actually used to think had some degree of honour and integrity, sadly that's all gone now they started losing more often than not.

    As for West Brom's players hating football in the coming months, several of them have already come out and said what a breath of fresh air Roy is, and how his ideas and structure are benefitting us, and that has obviously transferred onto the pitch too. Di Matteo had no idea, nice bloke, but no plan B, and apparently didn't even scout the opposition or turn up for training...On the outside it seemed a mad decision, but there's no doubting what impact old Woy has had. Long may it continue.

    Oh sorry, I forgot, this article was just about Liverpool wasn't it?

  • Comment number 72.

    Blog is laughable, if Liverpool finish anywhere in the top half of the table, Hodgson isn't going nowhere from the fans' bitterness. These sort of blogs are for end of season only, not closely fought, one-off grudge matches. Everyone knows the team isn't great, but they're above par and they'd never have been 15th or whatever it was at the Winter break under Kenny.

    And the manner of the win, typical Premier League non-top 5 team style.

  • Comment number 73.

    The refs job is not to protect Caroll, it's to enforce the laws of the game. 35 million for him was just as silly as 50 million Chelsea paid for a washed up Torres. Herein was Hodgsons problem. He inherited a team that didn't want to play, the probably were losing respect for one another and that were certainly losing confidence. He was up against it from the off. I am not saying he is as talented as Murhino, but he is not as bad as he soujourn at Liverpool would have us think. Liverpool like last season, are in the position they are, not because of any great quality in the side, but because the chasing pack are an icompetent bunch who can't keep up. 21 points away from first position with a goal differnce of +4 would get you sixth place in very few leagues. Liverpool got rid of Torres not just for the 50 million offer, but because he stank, he was detrimental to the club and it's no accident they look more of team without him.

  • Comment number 74.

    What I like is the person that presented the win ratio 'stats' is included some of the dross we beat in Europa league qualiying rounds so they boost Roys record and even then he still falls short of King Kenny.

    People from other clubs can comment, the obvious dislike for Liverpool is all to clear. But when us Liverpool fans are going to games every week and are seeing every aspect of what happens at the club, then you come on here and get people from other clubs patronising us telling us whats best for our club and thinking you speak for Liverpool fans, when all you see is MOTD highlights and the odd 'Super Sunday' game from your comfy armchair.. well your opinion is neither valued or appreciated. HTH.

    The football is a whole world away from Roy's, look at the PL form guide since Kenny took over (we're 2nd) then look at Mr. Owls (truly awful).

    We won't miss Roy and we rather would just leave him in the past. Shame we still have reminders of his reign with the likes of Poulsen, Cole & Konchesky stealing a wage.

    P.S. People how often do you need to bring up Rafa? You try and say we're obssesed...the other way round more like. Btw, Wilson and Shelvey were NOT Hodgson buys either. Say what you like about Rafa, but his legacy of the revamp academy is something you can't knock him for.

  • Comment number 75.

    Aye, Phil, thanks for replying, I actually think your blog is quite weighed and making sens.. it's the headline that I didn't really like.

    Pity that the discussion here quickly turned into blaming Liverpool supporters for actually being Liverpool supporters, by all others.

    Now..

    59. At 11:00am on 3rd апр. 2011, Football_UK wrote:
    @ 53, Robh82,

    Is sweet-talk in the ears of the fans of a football club that makes a manager good or bad? Who are you kidding?
    - - - -

    We don't want sweet talk, we want an honest talk, and preferably not a boring one.

    ----
    Is it Hodgson's fault that Torres wanted to leave or is it that Liverpool dropped out of top four and there was no money available to buy players and show signs that the club would be back in Champions League football? Are you joking?
    ----

    It is largely Hodgson's fault, as Torres himself admitted he started to see his life "black" and lost the love for the game of football.
    Mind you, he still cannot find it, so heavy was the depression.

    ----
    Liverpool F.C. acquired the services of Hodgson in the summer. He wasn't the fans' choice. But can you tell me which world-class managers wanted to come to your club?
    ---

    We actually wanted Kenny Dalglish, but it didn't happen... now it's too late to tread the water under the bridge....
    ----

    A lot of changes are needed indeed at Liverpool. Is there the cash available though? The club seems to have major problems setting a date for beginning the refurbishment of Anfield or build a new stadium, revenue has decreased dramatically after the exit of Champions League football and there is something called Financial Fair Play hanging over your heads, when it comes to transfers. Will major signings happen or is it that sweet-talk in the ears you just mentioned that's required?
    -----

    Thank you, we know our issues and rooms for improvements better than anyone esle does. We trust that our Manager will do the best, and the owners seem to have right ambitions and attitude. The fact that no one speaks big theese days about the plans doesn't speak of lack of ambitions. They won't be declaring at each and every corner about their plans for refirbishing Anfield or building another stadium, or buying playes, until some decision have been made. And that's a correct way to do it. Don't speak big, but do your business.
    -----

    It's one thing to research Hodgson's career, belittling it. You just forget the state your club was left by Rafa Benitez - it's exactly in this segment of football clubs, capabilities-wise.
    ----

    Look, the majority of the Liverpool supporters do not deny that Roy is a good manager. We don't want to belittle him, we just get emotional when others tell us that we should have given him more time (20 games with a little bit more points was enough time to realize that we were going to become another mid-table team)

    People who try to imply that Liverpool fans are deluded to aspire for the top 4, and that they actually have to be happy with some mid-table position, are just jealous and deluded themselves, and they don't understand what it means to win a title. We are aiming high, and that is the philosophy of Bill Shankley.
    I am sure we will get there, better sooner than later.

  • Comment number 76.

    29. At 06:53am on 3rd Apr 2011, BourbonSmash wrote:
    (a big fan of Hodgson, that supposedly cannot spell his name correctly)*
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    You don't know how to write a sentence, but no one is jumping up and down about it.

  • Comment number 77.

    Let's not overlook the fact that the referee played us out of the game yesterday, he was Albion's 12th man! Of course we should be beating WB 10/10 but it is made difficult my poor refereeing. The Liverpool revival will continue under the King and to those who say things like 'LFC will go no further than the Stokes and Fulham's of this world...'. Shut up, you clearly have an irrational thought process to suggest LFC is at the current standard of bottom half teams.

  • Comment number 78.

    Well said Baggieholt@5 Liverpool fans say Evertonians are bitter? Lots are but Liverpool fans reasons for being bitter are based on the fact that other clubs and teams are better than them. Hodgson was hounded out by Liverpool fans yet if you listened to the local phone ins its all "Thanks for your time" nonesense followed by Carrol is a better striker than Ferguson whats all that about? I believe Carrol is a decent striker but he certainly wont be turning games in a instant and as long as opposing teams compete with him is no better than Zamora or Kevin Davies.

    Suarez has started well and is looking a quality player but reserve judgment until the end of next season and if he has 25-30 goals to his name. He may well get them goals but the premature deciding that players are quality before they have made a mark is something that Liverpool fans are becoming famous for.

    Kelly is another who Liverpool fans have already got England caps hung on him. Now Kelly has started well and his defending looks good but i dont see a lot from him going forward to ever believe he is going to be a top quality fullback. Ye i know he played for the Liverpool junior teams at centreback and this is were he may have a better chance of becoming a quality player.

    Its clear Liverpool need a lot more creativity in midfield or there fans best get used to playing it up to the bigman once ideas become limited. Liverpool should also worry that although creativity is needed these kind of players normally fall a little short in the defensive department which could be very risky when playing two strikers as midfield could easily be overrun.

    Suarez has looked as though he maybe able to come deep and drop off behind the main striker which is certain to be needed as hardly any team play with two out and out strikers.

    Liverpools and indeed all other Premier League teams best chances of climbing the table and challenging is that the top four are nothing special with there imo not being a real top quality team in the Premier League, good teams yes but not one team is way ahead as is normally the case.

  • Comment number 79.

    Also, it really is amazing what team spirit can do. Look at the turnaround - WB have a manager whom they have confidence in and suddenly they find themselves 12th place. LFC regain a legend in Dalglish and we are sitting comfortably in 6th, given there were murmurings of relegation in October/November and our distinctly average squad, this is an amazing feat by Kenny.

  • Comment number 80.

    Footballuk@70 When they fill the right back spot i expect them to play much better? Liverpool have had a 18m England regular playing there untill recently.

  • Comment number 81.

    @ Bluenose...
    That was an amazing analysis of players there, I mean with your vast experience is scouting? Look back at Kenny's history of finding good and great players. If he thinks Kelly/Wilson/Spearing etc. are good enough then you can be sure enough that they are.

  • Comment number 82.

    We are Liverpool we don't care what our enemies Hodgson was a terrible manager for Liverpool the fact that our enemies want to wind us up by suggesting he should come back or he is better than kenny should be ignored. We should follow the dignity of the king and and concentrate on ourselves. Hodgson versus Kenny as a manager comparison is the same one sided contest it would be when comparing them as players. Tbh football has just been depressing for the last twenty years yesterday being a typical example. I actually think the false Dawn and hopes are worse than the misery as you know that the doom is just round the corner. But as a liverpool fan there is nothing you can do but walk on ...... We are not Chelsea or utd fans from the south and can not just change allegiance depending on whose winning so we have to carry on. So in summary well dine Hodgson you have achieved your mission of ensuring Liverpool are not in Europe next season. I hop you'd chats with fergie are more pleasant now. Don't ever come to anfield again

  • Comment number 83.

    What a load of rubbish. Two penalties rescued Hodgson. West Brom didn't look like seriously bothering us on what was a bad day at the office! You can spin it all you like, Hodgson is a nasty little arrogant man that should never have been appointed in the first place. Good riddance.

  • Comment number 84.

    No real issue with the original blog. As a realistic and I hope fair minded red, that result yesterday was fair, the performance was poor (Skrtle, Suarez and Reina excepted), with a feeble midfield that allowed a neat-passing and industrious Albion team to pile pressure on a defence that had the great misfortune of two injuries in the first 25 minutes. The penalties were reasonably given - my only beef with Atkinson was that he seemed to presume from the kick off that Carroll was guilty, whatever happened.
    Roy Hodgson will probably do relatively well at Albion, and good luck to him. He was, in hindsight, all wrong for Liverpool, where the sentiment factor is strong, and where a manager needs to understand what is sometimes an overly emotional environment. He really did not connect with that, whether or not Kenny was in the background.
    The rebuilding job for Kenny and Steve Clarke is bigger than many fans realise, and probably bigger than the owners will be able to achieve in the short term, for all that they represent a 100% improvement on the last shower. We've sold our main crown jewel, and the wages that some of the poor squad players enjoy will make them difficult to shift.
    If they finish 6th that will - for me - be a real result, given where they were towards the end of Hodgson's unhappy tenure, and given the average quality of so much of the squad.
    By the way, credit the Baggies fans for a great atmosphere in the ground.

  • Comment number 85.

    gbell..........what an idiot....

    Loserpool have refs in their pocket all the time, as well as the media.
    You could have lost 3or 4 players against Man U and didnt.
    Dodgy divers like Stevie Me always getting penalties!

    Pathetic excuse.

    Grow some and face facts that your just not very good!

    Bit pressure next season and your King will be doing a keegan....again!

  • Comment number 86.

    Wind tout neck in Blueose, it's not as if Everton have set the league or any other competitions alight recently. You *are* bitter.

  • Comment number 87.

    Simon .....nasty and arrogant...that sums up nearly 99% of Loserpool fans!


    Second rate club so get used to it!

    Pathetic little boy.

  • Comment number 88.

    Roy belongs somewhere like WBA. Kenny belongs at Liverpool. Hardly news, but thanks for trying.

  • Comment number 89.

    YNWA, unless you're name is Roy

  • Comment number 90.

    ahaha!Liverpool suck

  • Comment number 91.

    @ 67 Football_UK
    Hold on a minute, that wasn't a very good response by you:

    "You do show some "attitude" hints with references to "child do your homework instead of visiting blogs"
    I've never written that, not a good idea to mis-quote

    "1. You could argue for as long as you like that it's only a small minority that burnt Torres shirts at Liverpool"
    I could because it was - just one shirt was burnt. And yes he's not spoken well of around the club but isn't thats just down to timing that led Liverpool into the January transfer market to pay over the odds. If you listen to Liverpool fans, they would tell you that they wouldn't have begrudged him a move in the summer, just as they won't begrudge Reina leaving this summer. Both players have quality and they're not surrounded at Liverpool by the same quality. Handing in your transfer request in January and moving to a greatly disliked team is going to get a bad reaction from fans though. Even Torres ackonwledged that, even if you can't get your head around it.

    "2. As soon as Dalglish got your manager's position, you started referring to him as "King Kenny"."
    He was already known as "King Kenny", not as soon as he was appointed manager. The nickname is very well known. Have you not heard the song sung by Liverpool fans for years and years and years??? Is he actually the best choice for manager? Who knows yet, he certainly understands the club better than Hodgson though.

    "3. You fail to realise that Hodgson was given the job at your club because there was no money to be spent and everybody at your club knew Liverpool are in transition - everyone but the fans."
    The fans seem to be equally in transition. Fans always want more, thats a given, but they don't appear to be under the delusions that opponents fans place on them.
    Hodgson was given the job and was then pretty awful, along with the players.

    "4. You will never wake up from the Rafa years. He destroyed your academy and he made you a worldwide bargain basement (apart from the signings of Torres and Reina). Yet, you rubbished the manager who started using English academy talent of yours, from day one."
    I wouldn't know where to begin in picking holes in this (including the bits i cut out to condense), but here's a start. If you think Torres and Reina were the only examples of quality signings by Benitez, then why are you even bothering to comment on a Liverpool story? Obviously there was a lot of rubbish bought and sold, though at least it was usually at a profit (net spend usually pushed to one side when attacking Benitez). The academy talent that Hodgson started using: Jay Spearing (if you think he is actually talent) - debut and more games under Benitez. Martin Kelly, injured greatly in recent seasons knocking progression back, debut under Benitez, used more this season mainly in place of Konchesky once Dalglish got rid of him. Jack Robinson - debut under Benitez, nothing under Hodgson. I think thats it apart from some that got a run out against Northampton and were then ridiculed in post match by Hodgson. Other youth players of Wilson and Shelvey were signed by Benitez just before he left but did not from academy. The youth players doing well now were signed by Benitez and have been coached by a chap that Benitez invited in from Barca. Anyway, the Liverpool fans appear to be cut down the middle in terms of those who wanted him and those that didn't. Its not the one-sidedness you like to pretend exists.

    "5. Fans on these sites got really tired reading Liverpool supporters' comments, totally irrelevant with the topic in hand, in an attempt to change every article to a talk about Liverpool and Hodgson."
    Problem with this incredible point of yours being that this article that i'm commenting about and that we're conversing about now IS about Liverpool and IS about Hodgson. Baffling.

    "6. The first words of Henry, after buying Liverpool, were that there would be an end to big signings at the club and an approach of building up players would be followed. Yet, you didn't stopped moaning about poor signings one single day."
    Of course Liverpool fans continued moaning about the signings made under the previous owner and Hodgson, they were watching them regularly in games performing woefully. No poor signings of the like Liverpool saw under Benitez or Hodgson have "yet" been seen under Henrys reign. Admittedly give it a couple of transfer windows and we'll see. Potentially Carroll may turn out to be a poor signing, he's certainly expensive. It was quite wrong of Hodgson to repeatedly discredit the team he inherited as Rafas team and then introduce worse quality players. Of course he'll be ridiculed.

    "7. You have been failing to think why consecutive Brazil managers had Lucas an integral part of the Brazil team, at times when he was the joke and the loath of the day, by the lot of you. He arrived at your club as Brazil player of the year but it didn't stop you from belittling him every single day, failing to think if it's the manager using him wrongly that makes him look so bad."
    Lucas was overused at times, much like Insua. I think the Liverpool fans have come round to liking him now he's matured a little and playing better. He was never seen as a joke, just seemed to be a liability at times. He did get criticised at times by Liverpool fans and sometimes some may have been too critical. Opposition fans also ridiculed him time after time and questionned why he was at a (then) top 4 premier league team. Interesting to note that those opposition fans actually knew of his quality all along though, thanks

    "8. You have a selective memory when it comes to Hodgson at Liverpool. He didn't buy only Poulsen and Konsciesky. He also brought Meireles there."
    You're right here, he didn't only buy Poulsen and Konchesky. He also re-signed the released and injury prone Aurelio on a two year deal; he released Insua and the now finally fit Aqulani on loan and he signed Brad Jones which was fairly understandable. He didn't however choose the ineffective Cole and he didn't choose Meireles. All stated in my post above, so am I the one with selective memory?

    "9. You fail to remember which big names in football management wanted to come to Liverpool when Hodgson was appointed"
    I think Liverpool were turned down by Deschamps, but i don't know who else was approached, do you? There were other names linked with but the club were apparently intent on an English manager. Hodgson didn't go through all the applications and then appoint himself the job though, thats not his fault.

    "10. United fans talking about Hillsborough and Munich? Who do you think you're kidding? United fans have their minds set on a 19th title they're odds-on to celebrate this season."
    Maybe you at least didn't pay attention to the FA cup game this season when chants from both sides were clearly audible on TV. Both sides stupid and just minorities but (and to put it back into the context i introduced it in) worse than 3 chavs burning 1 Torres shirt for the cameras of Sky Sports News.

    Now, do you really want more? :)

  • Comment number 92.

    ONE win gets Hodgson out of Dalglish's shadow?

    The same Dalglish who's won four league titles as a manager, compared to Hodgson who has never won a major trophy in 36 years of management?

    Nonsensical.

  • Comment number 93.

    "82. At 13:25pm on 3rd Apr 2011, Daglish rush fowler legends owen torrres judas wrote:"

    Ah, so the vast majority of Liverpool fans aren't actually the glory hunters from the 70s and 80s then. You even end the ramble with a conspiracy theory! Brilliant!

  • Comment number 94.

    Every praise for Hodgson is followed by a criticism of his stay at Liverpool. Every Dalgish story is followed by a call for his permanent appointment. I'll stop hoping for otherwise.

    Oh, and Carroll was admonished twice by the ref after the yellow card. I don't think the caution was the problem with his performance.

  • Comment number 95.

    I like Hodgson (who doesn't??), he seems like one of the good guys. But his 'bizarre' comments after Liverpool lost the derby was the writing on the wall methinks.

    I'm not sure Dalglish is going to do much better, the problems at Liverpool are not the manager(s), but the sub-standard players.

    I'd keep only Reina, Kuyt, Merieles, Lucas, Gerrard and Carrol/Suarez. Three of whom should be only squad players.

    The rest need shipping out and replacing, but with no European football next season, without massive investment to entice players in I don't see the future as so bright.

    One bright spot, is that the new owners seem like a positive.

    I hope Hodgson does really well at WBA.

  • Comment number 96.

    ComeEnglandAway',
    "...keep only Reina, Kuyt, Merieles, Lucas, Gerrard and Carrol/Suarez"

    Do you mean, players like Johnson, Agger, Kelly, Carragher, Skrtel should be shipped out, because they are sub-standard players?

    What would be your list of players then, who you would bring to the team, should you have funds and European football next season, and why? just curious.

  • Comment number 97.

    I think Johnson is a liability, I say as an England fan. Agger is rarely fit. Kelly (I forgot about him, no he can stay, he looks like a good prospent :) ). Carragher is in the twilight days of a great career with the turning circle of the Titanic. Skirtel just not up to standard. Joe Cole is gone as a player.

    Losing Alonso, Mascherano were huge blows, particularly the former. They were never replaced with anything like similar.

    I'd have Gary Cahill, Scott Parker, Charlie Adam for a start if I was playing Football Manager.

  • Comment number 98.

    There is a man for every job and Roy was not the man for the Liverpool job. That is not to say that he can not sprinkle his magic somewhere else. WBA is Roy territory and it is a pity that neither the Liverpool leadership nor Roy himself did see that Liverpool would be too big for Roy. I liked the way Phil put it at the time - "Roy is a safe pair of hands". That was as diplomatic as one can be. But the thought of Liverpool being put "in a safe pair of hands" was a little unsettling. Can you imagine ManU and Chelsea looking for "a safe pair of hands"? If I was West Ham Chairman I would be looking for a safe pair of hands, not Liverpool..

  • Comment number 99.

    '@57 from someone with not much understanding of Inter at that time and he left that job after such a short time.'

    FYI, He wasn't sacked, he chose to go to Rovers.

    They finished in 3rd in his last full season at Inter as well as taking them to a UEFA Cup final. Going by the previous seasons in the 90s, that was, at least, a good season for Inter.

    He certainly was not a flop at Inter Milan. He steadied the ship considerably well.

  • Comment number 100.

    Typical England fan comment about Johnson. "Can't defend!" YAWN.

    Been brilliant since Kenny's come in this season, even playing on his less favoured left side alot. One of the better players this season no question. Going forward he's as good as anyway and defensively looks a lot more solid.

    I just really hope you can eventually hound out a good manger like Capello and get your wish of a Hodgson in, as you all seem to rate him so highly.

 

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