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Hodgson fighting losing battle

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Phil McNulty | 12:10 UK time, Thursday, 30 December 2010

Unloved and now mocked at Anfield, Roy Hodgson says he is still waiting to hear the famous support of Liverpool's followers. He may be waiting some time.

Liverpool's new owner John W Henry and his Boston-based cohorts must also be pondering the level of backing they can continue to give a manager whose faltering reign is now provoking an almost mutinous response for a fanbase famed for unswerving loyalty.

Hodgson had the silent treatment from The Kop for six months following his arrival from Fulham. When the 63-year-old was finally acknowledged, he received the sort of recognition he could do without.

As Liverpool slipped to a 1-0 home defeat against Wolves, the kind of dismal reverse that has characterised their season, Anfield delivered its most damning verdict yet, serving up ironic chants of "Hodgson For England" and adopting the traditional default position of calling for the return of Kenny Dalglish.

The fact that Hodgson chose to return fire by effectively criticising the fans for their lack of backing suggests no amount of counselling or consolation will repair this broken relationship.

Roy Hodgson watches his side crash to defeat against WolvesDefeat to Wolves left Hodgson (left) exposed. Photo: PA

Hodgson was stating facts when he highlighted the dearth of personal support. Liverpool's fans could be equally factual by replying that anyone blinking might have missed any moments of quality from his team at home this season. As high-risk strategies go, complaining about supporters in times of turmoil is right up there.

Hodgson was a logical choice by Liverpool's board to succeed Rafael Benitez. Mature and experienced - not to mention manager of the year after taking Fulham to the Europa League final - he looked the perfect fit to oversee what would inevitably be a transitional period on and off the pitch.

It was an appointment, however, that was greeted with a wave of indifference by supporters who craved a more high-profile figure. Needing a fast start, Hodgson stumbled as events off the field conspired against him and he proved incapable of coaxing any consistency or quality out of the squad Benitez left behind.

The Carling Cup loss at home to Northampton knocked a hole in his credibility, a hole made bigger after being outplayed at Anfield by newly promoted Blackpool. Liverpool's dismal away form has not helped, while The Kop's corrosive reaction to the defeat against Wolves appears to have ensured the last droplets of support from the fans have drained away.

New signings - Raul Meireles apart - have been failures, while Hodgson's reign now carries all the hallmarks of one that will limp to a conclusion at some point between now and the season's end.

Hodgson - and he deserves sympathy here because he cannot pretend to be a personality that he is not - has failed to capture the imagination of Liverpool's supporters. They were angered by his tame reaction to Sir Alex Ferguson's criticism of Fernando Torres after the defeat at Manchester United as well as the cosmetics the former Inter Milan boss applied to Liverpool's display when they were well beaten at Everton.

Conservative tactics have also drawn criticism, while even victory over Chelsea only qualified as brief respite for the increasingly beleaguered Hodgson.

Liverpool owner Henry now faces a huge call. Does he react to such open discontent - not towards him or his NESV colleagues it should be stressed - by sacking his manager or does he continue to map out the long-term strategy and wait until the summer to make a change?

Whatever the American decides, it would take a transformation of almost unfathomable proportions for Hodgson to survive at Anfield any longer than the end of this season. The end may come even sooner if the current decline accelerates.

He was regarded as a safe pair of hands - not so safe as it has transpired - but the new owners have increased ambitions for Liverpool. What they have already been able to decipher on and off the pitch means it is unlikely Hodgson will play a part in their vision for the years ahead.

The Kop has made it clear they want the return of Dalglish but the Scot would probably want to call all the shots himself and Henry has already made it clear Damien Comolli is his man as director of football strategy. So where would Dalglish fit in?

torrespa595.jpgStriker Torres is out of sorts and he continues to toil. Photo: PA

If Hodgson wants sympathy and understanding, then former Liverpool midfielder Jan Molby, a regular observer of his reign this season as an expert BBC summariser and supporter of the club he represented with such distinction, has some to offer.

"I don't think Roy can be blamed totally for what has happened," said the Dane. "There are things you can't defend, like his signings and some of the performances. He knew Paul Konchesky and thought he would do a job but that hasn't worked out, while Christian Poulsen has found the Premier League too much for him.

"Joe Cole has been a major disappointment. Despite the delight from Liverpool's fans when he signed, I was never overexcited about him. I have never been convinced. He was on the bench at Chelsea and he has been on the bench for England. He is what he is - a subsitute who could have an impact coming on."

Molby also mounted a defence for Hodgson as he added: "He inherited an unbalanced squad with no real wide men. Dirk Kuyt and Maxi Rodriguez play there and yet they have no real pace. They can't get behind defences and get crosses in.

"The striker situation was never addressed in terms of back-up to Torres. To go so many transfer windows without getting a striker in was criminal. Liverpool have paid the price.

"Almost the first thing he had to do was sell Javier Mascherano with little time to buy a replacement, although Meireles has shown his quality. To come to Liverpool, a club with high expectations, and know the squad is not what you need makes life very difficult.

"He has been unlucky with some of his big players as well. Steven Gerrard got injured playing for England, Torres just hasn't fired and now Jamie Carragher is out for three months. As I said, there are things you can't defend but there are other things that have been out of Hodgson's control."

How Hodgson turns around his deterioating relationship with Liverpool's fans that is at best stone cold and at worst nakedly hostile is almost impossible to work out, unless he conjures up a string of results his current squad look totally ill-equipped to achieve.

"The relationship with the fans is a problem," said Molby. "The whole atmosphere at Anfield and the relationship between Roy and the fans is most unlike Liverpool. He never even got a welcome at his first game, which is almost unheard of for any new Liverpool manager.

"I was at that game at Arsenal and watched specifically for the reaction he got. Apart from a few people around the technical area, there was no reaction. The Wolves game was the first time Liverpool fans have chanted Hodgson's name - and it was only to be sarcastic, which is not a great sign.

"Maybe the fans were hoping for better. Over the last three years, when there was speculation about Benitez's future, there was talk of Guus Hiddink and Jose Mourinho. They were never going to come to Liverpool at the time Roy got the job.

"That is not to say Liverpool could not attract a top manager from abroad. I think Louis van Gaal would walk to Anfield to take the Liverpool job."

As the storm clouds gather around Hodgson, Molby believes Liverpool's new hierarchy is more likely to favour taking its time mapping out a long-term strategy rather than take the option of sacking the manager unless the situation deteriorates even more dramatically. It is a policy he agrees with.

"I think he should get more time," said Molby. "This is a bad, bad time to change managers unless the one you specifically want is out there walking around without a job. Who are they? They are Martin O'Neill, Frank Rijkaard, Sam Allardyce and Martin Jol, who wouldn't want to come and work with Comolli again after their time together at Spurs.

"This is a really important period for the new owners. They are assessing everything and I think there will be upheaval in the summer.

"I don't know whether this will include a change of manager but it might mean losing one or two players Liverpool might not want to lose, such as Torres and Pepe Reina, to bring some money in and to start rebuilding and overhauling things."

Hodgson faces the disaffected fans again when Bolton visit Anfield on New Year's Day. Another defeat will push him even closer to what seems to be an inevitable fate.

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  • Comment number 1.

    Phil how come you do not comment at all on Roy's tactical ineptitude? ie Mainly playing Meireles on the wing when he is in fact our best Central Midfielder? Don't blame Stevie G's injury for this. Actually we played some decent football in his absence with the Lucas/Meireles partnership flourishing. No comment on your part on why he Roy would mess that up (with the return of Gerrard from injury). No criticism on why Roy bought a classy Central Midfielder only to the stick him on right wing. Why is that Phil?

  • Comment number 2.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 3.

    I was also suprised by the reaction of Liverpool fans when he signed. Everyone wanted a high profile foreign manager (whilst complaining that no young English players were coming through). From the start he was never going to win them over especially after the slow start (similar to what happened at Fulham before he got the going).

    Unfortunately for Wy, he was trying to turn a squad which seemed to be going downhill on ice. It was always going to take time especially which the main players at the club being out of form or injured.

    Good luck to Woy in finding a club more deserving of him and all the best for the new manager (when the inevitable happens) to try and win over the fans. It is obvious though, only king Kenny (when did he last manage although the fans will back him) or a big foreign name will do... so much for bringing through British talent

  • Comment number 4.

    Good to see the media are finally latching onto the reality that their darling Roy is foundering.

    Chanting 'Dalglish' doesn't mean we want Kenny as manager. The Kop wouldn't chant 'Hodgson out' so it's a way of expressing displeasure with the current incumbent.

    Every Liverpool manager in the last 50 years had some credentials. They had been part of a successful trophy winning dynasty and brought continuity, or they had won trophies in other leagues.

    Hodgson's Manager of the Year award doesn't cut it with Liverpool fans. When Benitez won the Champions League in 2005 the award went to David Moyes. Enough said.

    I think big Jan is way out of touch with grassroots sentiment if he believes O'Neill or Allardyce would be accepted. Both are proponents of deep-lying containment with long ball counter attacks. Exactly the unpalatable football that Hodgson peddles.

    Even Martin Jol hasn't actually won much and I'm sure Comolli wouldn't consider working with him again.

    The risk for Fenway Sports Group is that Liverpool are currently showing relegation form - if they maintain their current points/game ratio they will amass 42 points. After losing to the bottom team that might be a tough ask.

  • Comment number 5.

    Could be a pricey sacking , is he not on a decent length of contract ?

  • Comment number 6.

    Its looking more likely that hodgson needs to rehtink his tatics either that or let him retire at the end of this calender year

    and that Liverpool doo need much more investment

    Hodgson is almost as bad as alan shearer nd thats pretty shocking

  • Comment number 7.

    Phil, would Dalglish really be that bad until the end of the season?

    I can't think of a time during Rafa's tenure where the fans openly turned agaisnt him. We're a bunch of supporters who give our managers time and back them even in the worst of times, but when the vast majority of fans vent their anger at the manager then it's time to go.

    Also, do you think Roy is getting off a bit lightly by the media? Rafa's last season in charge and even during his reign at Inter, certain journalists and Andy Gray were hammering him for everything, from his squad to zonal marking, yet we have probably conceded more goals under Roy and the squad is much different.

  • Comment number 8.

    The point is that, post Benitez, Hicks and Gillette, Liverpool are not in the first rank of Premier League clubs anymore, and therefore can't attract the 'big names'. Hodgson was and is a good choice for this transitional period, but the Liverpool fans need to forget about their glorious past and recognise where they are now. Then they will realise this will take many years to put right, and living in the past is no way to do it.

  • Comment number 9.

    Losing is another thing but playing like what we are is totally unacceptable.... Dont tell me that 'long term' thing roy (64) is not that kind!!
    Bring kenny or anyone.... So that we can play atleast in europa next season...

  • Comment number 10.

    i actually quite like hodgson, while my chelsea are struggling, i only need to look at l'pool to cheer me up.

    once again, cheers roy

  • Comment number 11.

    The problem is that Liverpool (like most football fans) want everything yesterday. It is no suprise that the most successful teams give their managers time to make the squad their own and get them playing how they want. This does not happen overnight.

    Why would any top top manager want to manage there at the moment? 3 world class players of which Gerrard and Torres are struggling with fitness and rumours have it that Reina may be moving on. Take these out and you have a squad comparible to a Fulham, Birmingham or Blackburn.

    To be fair though to Liverpool fans, if you pay £30 a match then you expect entertainment and if you do not get the entertainment then you are entitled to show your opinion. Many people are no longer watching as fans but as customers ready to be entertained! Last night was not entertainment...

  • Comment number 12.

    If Liverpool fans want to try a foreign manager with a big reputation, how about Luiz Felipe Scolari.

  • Comment number 13.

    It's ironic that the media who are now castigating Hodgson, and rightly so, were partly culpable for his appointment (if you do not know what I'm referring to, do some research).

    Every sensible LFC supporter knew he was not the right man from the start, however we gave him a chance. It has very clearly not worked out.

    Hodgson is the last remnant of the old broken regime, time to go mate, and please leave with some dignity by resigning.

  • Comment number 14.

    Finally... the reason why Woy does not get the abuse from the media he may deserve is because he has something which is generally lacking within football... dignity.

    Maybe he could have blamed the ref a few more times or stormed out of a press conference or swear at the officials... maybe that would have showed he 'cares' about the club!

    Woy needs to go soon though... the best for both parties!

  • Comment number 15.

    Taking a small team to UEFA Cup Final doesn't really make you a great manager. Steve MacClaren (sorry for spell) took Middlesborough too. And look what happened. Yes, he achieved something, but that did not make hi a great manager because he hasn't achieved much. Fulham was a fluke!
    A mid-table mediocre manager given job bigger in size than his abilities.

  • Comment number 16.

    Jan Molby says:

    "That is not to say Liverpool could not attract a top manager from abroad. I think Louis van Gaal would walk to Anfield to take the Liverpool job."

    That'll do for me. Roy out, Louis in with some cash to spend in January.

  • Comment number 17.

    Roy just doesn't get the football club, it's culture or it's fans. It's a disatrous reign which needs to be cut short as soon as possible.

    Have a read of this article I wrote about Roy a couple of weeks back. Nothing has changed in the meantime. It has been clear for sometime he isn't the man for the job!

  • Comment number 18.

    Hodgson was a good enough manager for Fulham, Liverpool are about as good as Fulham so.............................

    Liverpool fans love to sing about their history don't they - seems they are becoming history now!

  • Comment number 19.

    Those chanting "Dalglish" be careful what you wish for. He wouldn't be the first legendary Merseyside manager to have an ignominious reign in the modern era.

  • Comment number 20.

    Only the 'English' manager loving media thought Hodgson was a safe pair of hands Phil. And where does this image that he is a gentleman come from? Constant sniping at the former manager and players, even going as far to say that he is not responsible for Cole's failure. All that smacks of a man that passes the buck, hardly a gent.

    The vast majority of Liverpool fans knew this was a bad appointment, knowledgable people, many been watching football for 50-60 plus years knew he was the wrong man. But you pundits and journos thought one good cup run gave him the credentials to take the post at Liverpool. I have to question the intelligence of almist every pundit, especially the ones that say Rafa inherited a better squad in 2004 than Hodgson did in 2010, completely baffling!!!

    Maybe if the media and pundits took one eye off a manager's country of birth you lot may not spout so much guff.

    I am baffled by some of Molby's comments. Give him more time?? for goodness sake, we will finish the season in the bottom half of the table or worse, probably with a negative GD. Will that inspire players to sign for Liverpool in 2011/12 or more importantly for some of our 'better' players to stay?

  • Comment number 21.

    #11 - I don't think we want things yesterday, we just don't think we should be taking so many steps back in order to take some forward. There is no reason we should be as bad as we are in order to be better tomorrow. Under the current tenure I doubt that "tomorrow" will ever arrive.

    The other issue is it is all very well getting rid of Hodgson, but there's nobody good enough out there to come in. If you come up with a problem then really you have to come up with a solution, because everyone can see the problems at Liverpool, thats the easy bit!

  • Comment number 22.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 23.

    I think Jan Molby's comments are correct. Changing your manager now will be suicide and replacing him with Daglish utter stupidity. I hardly see any blame attached to the players, were are the leaders? I support a team that lacked stability, that continued to change managers which as resulted in years of failure.

    The next appointment is critical to the future of Liverpool FC or the downward spiral will continue. Keep Roy, back him and I'm sure he will provide the stability and success you desire.

  • Comment number 24.

    "The problem is that Liverpool (like most football fans) want everything yesterday. It is no suprise that the most successful teams give their managers time to make the squad their own and get them playing how they want."

    This isn't true at all, go watch the videos of us at Anfield against Spurs in January 2010, we had been knocked out of the champions league, and had just lost to Reading in the FA cup at Anfield, yet we were behind our team a 100%.

    If the manager respects the traditions of the club, and respects the fans, then he will be supported fully even if his results haven't been quite what we would expect.

    Instead of keeping quiet and getting on with it, he's decided to put certain players in the firing line to spare himself, which is a cowardly trick.

    When we lost at Old Trafford, Ferguson accused Torres of making a meal out of the challenges, instead of defending him or pointing to Nani who was much worse that day, he said I don't want to get involved in it. Well, Sorry Roy, you've accepted the job, you're already involved in it.

    Another one was against Northampton, he claimed the players who he had given a chance to had let him down, even though he had played certain youngsters (Pacheco, Wilson) in the positions which they'd never played before.

    He has alienated the fans and the players, it is time for Roy to go.

  • Comment number 25.

    Hodgson has to go. The performance last night was simply awful, especially the second half. He has the look and sound of a defeated man every time he appears in the media and his woeful personality is spreading throughout the team.
    His tactics are abysmal. Kuyt playing wide left and Mireless wide right was just plain incompetent. Neither of them are capable of taking on and beating a player and each wanted drift into the middle leaving no width at all. Ngog was anonymous and I have every sympathy with Torres because he gets no service at all.
    God help us if he is allowed to choose who is bought in January. By the end of the Wolves game, not one of the players he personally endorsed in the last transfer window was on the pitch and no amount of time or money will produce the level of performance we need if he is at the helm.
    Dead man walking...

  • Comment number 26.

    I can't see what it is that Hodgson's supposed to have done that makes current performances anything other than perfectly acceptable. Liverpool overperformed for a couple of seasons under Benitez, but they are not a top four team. At best, they were just on the fringes. If things fail to go their way wrt injuries, this is what you get. There is, therefore, no case for Hodgson to answer because Liverpool are doing reasonably well at the moment.

  • Comment number 27.

    I'll probably get slaughtered for this, but as a neutral, i think Chris Hughton would be ideal for Liverpool. He's young enough to grow into the job. and has a progressive attitude. The new owners are in it for the long haul, and it may well be the case, that they'd like to see a manager in place that they can keep for a while, and has no "history" as a millstone around their necks.

    Personally i think a bold move like this would change the current state of affairs at LFC, and set things in motion for an improvement, particularly long term.

    LFC can do little worse than the state they're in, and Chris just may be the catalyst they need to turn things around. His record so far is successful, and he's shown he can handle a sustained push to improve, not reliant on big signings, huge wage bills, or the sometime millstone of "reputation".

  • Comment number 28.

    Keep Roy, back him and I'm sure he will provide the stability and success you desire.
    There is absolutely no evidence that anything will change under Hodgson. There is plenty of evidence that things will get worse.

    We lost the derby to Everton, he said we played well, we were awful, he's deluded. He has not taken any responsibility for anything, he has blamed the squad for being too small, the squad for being too big, the former manager, the fans (numerous occasions), publically slated players, insulted the youth players, and two England internationals. All this in the space of 6 months. Not much going for him in terms of evidence he'll turn it round is there?

  • Comment number 29.

    Post #9 - you make me laugh - football fan's logic?

    "Dont tell me that 'long term' thing roy (64) is not that kind!!
    Bring kenny or anyone...."

    You do realise that your saviour / messiah / "he who can do no wrong but hasn't been managing in the modern game for years and years" Kenny is 60?

  • Comment number 30.

    #26 " Liverpool are doing reasonably well at the moment."

    No they're not.

  • Comment number 31.

    Post #24 I think you hit the nail on the head with one of your comments:

    Instead of keeping quiet and getting on with it, he's decided to put certain players in the firing line to spare himself, which is a cowardly trick.

    When we lost at Old Trafford, Ferguson accused Torres of making a meal out of the challenges, instead of defending him or pointing to Nani who was much worse that day, he said I don't want to get involved in it. Well, Sorry Roy, you've accepted the job, you're already involved in it.

    The fact is, Roy inherited Benitez's team and it's clear he hasn't bonded / gelled / earned the respect of them - particularly in situations as you mention above.

  • Comment number 32.

    It is extremely depressing to do a Hodgson search on twitter right now. A lot of our fans have ridiculous expectations it seems, what do they expect when our best players, like Gerrard and Torres, have not performed all season

    All the same it is getting to the stage where I am half hoping for Roy to go myself, not because I think he is the wrong man, I just feel that when you have this amount of a divide between manager and fans, not matter whether it is due to the fans being unreasonable or not, then keeping the manager can only damage the club

    But I have to say to the people on twitter putting up polls on websites then having it re-tweeted by every anti-Roy source they can find: OFCOURSE THE POLL IS GOING TO BE ANTI-ROY IF YOU DO THAT!

  • Comment number 33.

    Roy would prevent the lfc ship from sinking...... IF he jumps out of it!!

  • Comment number 34.

    I'm no liverpool fan and, as an Arsenal fan don't hate them either, but I also think the liverpool crowd are being just a tad unfair. If you look at the players who were out on the pitch yesterday... it's a joke! That team is not worthy nor capable of a top ten finish. The defence is an absolute shambles (funny, coming from a supporter of a team who's defence is cr@p, I know). Players like Kyrgiagos, Skrtel, Johnson and Konchesky wouldn't get into any top team! You then have two really excellent midfielders in Mereilles and Gerrard, but that's about it for the midfield! Kuyt is played out of position and Lucas is, well... Lucas!! A player more suited to Wolves (no disrespect) than to L'pool.
    Up front you obviously have Torres who is WORLD CLASS, but apart from him you also have Ngog (who I think rubbish) and Babel who can't seem to play for toffee! I won't even go into the lack of strength in depth of the squad.

    All in all Liverpool just don't have the players to mount a serious challenge to the top four. They should be realistic and aim for top ten finish and be happy.

    Also, all this does not mean I think Woy is decent manager, though... Konchesky being one of his purchases somes that up quite nicely. Time for the Yanks to properly invest if any success/progress is to be gained!

    I don't think and I definately don't hope Liverpool get relegated though! Good luck!

  • Comment number 35.

    This is a difficult one. I would wager most LFC supporters want to see the back Hodgson, and quickly, but I agree with Molby that it's unlikely to happen until the end of the season. I believe NESV missed their chance at the takeover. Hodgson was a product of the previous ownership, and as we know, history is littered with unfairly sacked ex-managers who were victims of not much more than not being the owner's 'own man'. We were mired in a slump when they came in, many of said that 10 league games was a good signpost to consider a change, but as they failed to act then, I'm not sure how effective it would be to change in January. I fear it would create yet more turmoil in an already turbulent situation. The ideal thing would have been to see him gone back in October and a caretaker appointed whilst searching for a new manager who can take the club forward.

    Having said that, I do believe he has been his own worst enemy with his off-putting statements in the press, blaming first the kids, then the stars, the journeymen and now the fans. He picks the team and sets the tactics, and most worryingly continues to play men out of position, and at what point is he going to take some responsibility for where we find ourselves, our worst position at this stage since the 50s?

    I'd like to see him out before the club falls further into the mire, but it's hard to see who of quality would come in to sort out the mess. I don't think Kenny wants to touch it with a barge pole, and nor should he in my opinion: that ship has definitely sailed.

  • Comment number 36.

    We have tried to be patient with Roy and by extension, with NESV. However, most other "big & ambitious" clubs would've sacked their manager for the below (so I await your action, as late as it is NESV):

    p.s. these are the 'achievements' that Roy feels he should get support for

    1) Having the team in the relegation zone for the first time in decades
    2) Losing to a 4th-division/level team
    3) Losing to the newest team in the division (with the cheapest squad) at HOME
    4) Losing to our derby rivals and smiling about it afterwards and saying that we were the better team (when we clearly were'nt)
    5) Being in the bottom half of the table with a Negative Goal Difference at Xmas for the first time in decades
    6) Downplaying (both before & after) games what LFC's EXPECTATIONS should be against teams that have'nt beaten us in DECADES!
    7) Decrying the quality of a squad that had MORE players at the World Cup than ANY other Prem. team
    8) Having that same squad lose 25% more league games (8) than they've won mid-way thru the season, and 50% more than they've drawn (even tho the $ value of LFC's team was higher than all but a couple of those 8 teams)
    9) Publicly criticising players, and not defending them against outside attacks
    10) Blaming everything & everyone else
    11) Falsely saying that no other manager could do better when we had a POOR last season that was still MILES better than this one
    12) Saying that our Greatest ever player (who's also our 3rd most successful Mgr) should never have been considered for the job he's f..king up.
    13) Not showing that a Manager is not just supposed to pick the team and set it out at the start (as bad as that has been itself)...but showing an INABILITY to change a game by changing players and/or tactics when NEEDED!.
    14) Losing to the LAST PLACED team AT HOME (who also had the WORST AWAY record), even tho their much smaller squad had LESS than 3 days to recover from their last game.
    15) CRITICISING fans who JUSTIFIABLY protested against the previous owners and/or the current Manager!

    DO YOUR DUTY NESV (cause ROY DOES'NT have the class or dignity), or you will LOSE what little of the Goodwill your takeover bought from us!


  • Comment number 37.

    sum1 said it right. Fulham finished 12th last season. and thats where Liverpool are right now. Fulham did good in Uefa Cup. Thats what Liverpool are doing now. If anything, he is performing better..

  • Comment number 38.

    I'm 29 years old and have been following Liverpool all my life. I can honestly say that I have never seen them play as badly as they have under Roy Hodgson.

    I was unfortunate enough to watch the match against Wolves and it was one of the most awful games of football I ever seen. We looked completely lost and starved of ideas and impetus. I don't think we strung more than 5 passes together in the whole game against a team who grew more and more in confidence throughout the game and eventually overplayed us.

    There is a fair argument against the will and desire of the players, who have all been way under par this season. Ultimately, however, it is the managers responsibility to bring the best out of the players, both individually and as a unit. In order to achieve that, the manager needs to be experienced in handling the galactic ego of the modern footballer (particularly the "superstars"); capable of demonstrating a range of tactical methods and strategies in the face of adversity; and maintain a critical awareness of himself when things don't go to plan. Hodgson has failed on all these counts. He has defiled players in public, played a one dimensional style of football that lacks ambition and verve and expressed stubborn defiance and contempt when criticised by his own fans (who want nothing more than a glimmer of hope that the club going in the right direction).

    Hodgson is way out of his depth at Liverpool. His approach to the game does not suit the ambitions of the club. His record at Liverpool speaks for itself and it is simply not good enough for a club that finished 2nd in the Premier League two seasons ago. Even more importantly, the last things you should do as manager of Liverpool, whatever the situation, is accuse the fans of not supporting the club - MAJOR faux pas! We have one of the best fan bases in the world that supports its team through thick and thin with passion and vigour. One of the reasons Rafa Benitiez was loved by the fans is that he knew what it meant to support Liverpool and he always respected the fans, even when subject to the fiercest criticism from them.

    If Hodgson leaving really is an inevitability, the wisest decision would be to release him sooner rather than later. I can only see this situation get worse, not better, the more time he is given. In the words of Rafa Benitez, this is a "fact".

  • Comment number 39.

    Its interesting how as a newcastle fan we are always being told that our expectations are unrealistic and we wont be satisfied until the messiah manages us. Liverpool fans need to take a good look at their squad and lower expectations, forget dalglish (what if he fails?) and give roy support at least till the end of the season. In my eyes it was always going to be a transitional season for liverpool and it may do them some good in the long run as it has at newcastle. Dont follow newcastle and have more managers than hot meals!

  • Comment number 40.

    Hodgson was always going to be replaced in the summer unless in the highly unlikely scenario we finished in the top 4. If we lose on New Years day against Bolton at home then to prevent a relegation fight the board will have to sack him immediately. But I think we will limp through until the summer, finish in our worst position since the Premiership began then the board will sack Hodgson and usher in a new era where the only way can be up. Then we will see a Wenger style approach of new young players being groomed who will have a great sell on value or will provide the quality for the first team. The board are looking at a long term strategy not a quick fix, so unfortunately for all Liverpool fans a couple more wins in January and Hodgson will be here to stay until the summer.

  • Comment number 41.

    It's time for roy to leave. Enough is enough. There is no flaire. Relegation will haunt Liverpool. Unless they rid of roy, we will be like Leeds united. Our players are crap. Players such as gerrard Torres haven't performed at all. Perhaps we should sell and get some money.

  • Comment number 42.

    Post 15 / Ahsan...

    I think you're right. If you took someone like Moyes from Everton and put him in at Man U or Liverpool I reckon he would struggle a great deal (at least initially) as they're a completely different prospect.

    You know he's worked miracles at Everton, but that doesn't necessarily prepare him for the expectations at a much larger club in terms of fanbase, money, expectations and recent success... but if given time ... who knows?

    And I see a problem here, I may be wrong, but from the outside looking in, it's as if Liverpool fans haven't recognised they're going through a bad patch and they probably have to go backwards before they can go forwards. Maybe Roy needs that adjustment period, and maybe that's what NESV, John Henry, Fenway are doing. He's been there five minutes, he still hasn't got to grips with what is essentially Benitez's team. Are you going to sit back and swallow the bad times, in anticipation of the good?

  • Comment number 43.

    "The fact is, Roy inherited Benitez's team and it's clear he hasn't bonded / gelled / earned the respect of them - particularly in situations as you mention above."

    I actually thought in the summer, it might be easier for him to get the players to respond to his methods, as there were a lot of players disillusioned under Rafa at the club, but it seems instead of getting them quickly onside, he's alienated them further with his comments to the media, and his training methods.

  • Comment number 44.

    Roy Hodgson has won half a doesnt top flight league titles in Europe, a load of trophies, has gotten teams to the UEFA champions league final, EUROPA final and has worked well with tight budgets - Would they have gotten a better fit?

    No manager would have gotten Liverpool firing this year, we all knew mid table finish was their best hope. I actually thought Hodgson was a fool to take the job as this job is now a true poisoned chalice.

  • Comment number 45.

    ive been an lfc supporter for 37 years and have never worried about relegation till this year, i think the biggest problem started in the late 80's when for some unknown reason managers of liverpool forgot to build a team as a team and started building a squad around 1 central player {macca) and that tradition seems to have carried on to stevie g, other teams have grown wise to this and know if u stop stevie u stop liverpool, and now stevie is gettin older and more prone to injury i think its time to build a new squad, i also think gerrards touch is no longer what it used to be and i dont think it will improve in time. i dont think roy is the man to take us there and now is the time to change, there are some good managers out of work at the moment but if had a choice of any manager in the world i would like it to be harry redknapp, the man has proven himself with and without money for years at west ham, portsmouth and now with spurs.

  • Comment number 46.

    The problem with Hodgson is not that we dont wish to support him or dislike him. Its the manner in which he has gone about his job which is really disappointing. He started the blame game from the word go, which was the wrong thing to do. We supporters are not stupid and we know that Hodgson had a difficult job on his hands, but we needed a lift by our new manager after a bad season and all the saga of ownership going on, and this we never got. In fact Hodgsons' management has sent the team to a new low. In every department of his management skills he is worse than our previous manager. All it seems is that he is trying to buy him self time by blaming everything apart from himself which shows his main priority is looking after number 1. With Benitez we all admired his love and fight for the club, which I feel got him the sack. Benitez got the ball rolling to try and get H&G out and it cost him his job. It seems Hodgson is just happy to be manager of Liverpool, and that is very dangerous.
    We have seen difficult times like these before Roy, with Evans, but Evans never blamed anyone and gave his best and so he got the support of the fans. If you really care about the club then resign and you will have won our support.

    And just to mention, I think all the manager mentioned are not right for us, barring Martin o'niell. The best person we could get is Didier Deschamp, followed by Kenny( on a short term) and then Rafa back. Deschamp fits the bill perfectly as he is young and has shown a lot of promise with teams with low confidence and self esteem. Kenny because he is kenny, although I think it is too much for him with the club in this state (kevin keegan maybe a safer pair of hands) and then Rafa because he is a fighter who loves the club and most definately can only improve the team and get it back to challenging in the shortist period of time.

  • Comment number 47.

    Phil, I think it has been mentioned before but it is worth reiterating that you have failed to mention Roy isn't up to the job. Wonderful man, very knowledgeable of course...but not doing a grand job at the minute. Too many good players playing out of their natural positions for me.

    Lets look at the opposition...Malouda...plays on the left and sticks to that, so does Bale, Modric in the centre and sticks to does Wilshere, Song, Nani, all stick their positions.

    Granted Liverpool do not have the depth due to Benitez' buying policies, but doesn't mean key players have to be shifted around to make way for Gerrard. Kuyt playing on the left can be seen as a joke, Merieles is never a right sided midfielder, Ngog can't play with Torres....if we can see that why can't Roy! Players will always want to play where they are told to play, as the game is addictive, but sometimes they really need to ask....You want me to play there....???

    Yes Liverpool have to buy, on current form they could get the best strikers in the world and still be rubbish. What was evident last night was the players did not understand what they had to do. The players at hand aren't good enough to play in all positions...we've seen Gerrard struggle on the left for England so the lesson Roy, play players in their natural positions......if Gerrard can't be in the team leave him on the bench!

  • Comment number 48.

    Post #29 Wat modern game?? Its almost the same as it was 10 years back wen kenny was at celtic.... Atleast till the end of season anyone would do in place of roy....

  • Comment number 49.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 50.

    Roy Hodgson has won half a doesnt top flight league titles in Europe, a load of trophies, has gotten teams to the UEFA champions league final, EUROPA final and has worked well with tight budgets - Would they have gotten a better fit?

    Am I missing something? When did all this happen?

  • Comment number 51.

    Hodgson definitely deserves some stick.

    However, he's also paying for the sins of 'Not My Fault' Rafa.

  • Comment number 52.

    I pity Roy, really, and other neutrals should, too and I think bemoaning his tactical approaches is flogging a dead horse

  • Comment number 53.

    I reckon this is as far as you will come to putting Hodgson under scrutiny. Still, credit where it's due but that is quite a turn-around, Phil. I can live with condescending sermons from rival fans about living on past glories etc., but I could never work out why the pundits, who are paid to be dispassionate about such things, were failing to see what I have been seeing for the last half season. Hodgson is palpably beyond his pay-grade at Liverpool, whatever the LMA award may imply.
    In terms of tenure, I think Hodgson is gone. One thing that FSV will quickly notice is the declining number through the turnstiles. Fewer are willing to fork out £40 to watch pub-team tactics and negative rubbish, this at a time when there are other competing demands on the household budget. Already the signs are ominous-- just look at how many tickets are still available on match days, tickets that even in Benitez’s worst season, would have sold out days before. Twice in recent weeks, (Villa and yesterday), I’ve been able to get tickets on match days. I well remember the last days of the Houlier era when we were struggled to get 35,000 into Anfield and I can hear rumblings from travelling fans, too. Those dark days are nigh, and if that happens he and us both will be put out of our collective misery as FSG protect their investment.

  • Comment number 54.

    Roy Hodgson is not a bad manager. He has signed payers who have performed at high level. BUT. Poulson I am afraid is being shown up as being quite a bit short of class. In both premiership and european games he looks afraid of making the inevitable mistakes that he does. Koncheski has always been a solid defender without being expansive. Cole is just to far away from London.
    There is of course somthing else that most premiership teams suffer from. The dreaded PLAYER POWER. Managers and owners need to stamp there authority on the mediocrity by withholding pay from players who just go through the motions or if it was no play no pay the performances would surely improve.
    I have watched Liverpool all season and I don't believe we have a squad of players with pride in the club. Most of them like most in the league simply take the money and run.
    The premiership is the fatted calf and most of the players are prodigals waiting to go home. Leaving the british game in a dire state and it will happen all the quicker when the money starts to run out.

  • Comment number 55.

    #26 - If 3 points off relegation is doing 'reasonably well' then heaven help us! Taxi for Hodgson as there are plenty of decent managers with top class credentials around now that weren't about in the summer.

  • Comment number 56.

    I was pro-Roy when he took over and defended him vehemently until very recently but I've now sat through games against Newcastle, Utrecht and Wolves and it's just been woeful.

    BUT what really gets me is what he says post-match, my fists are almost clinched in rage. The first was when he called the 0-0 draw with Birmingham a 'good result'. A good result?! Who for?
    Describing us continually as having played well, such as the first half against Newcastle, against Utrecht, Everton, deserving a point we almost luckily (and single handedly) claimed against United thanks to Gerrard.
    For once he ought to admit it's been nowhere near good enough.

    And then he says he doesn't know what to do, he's doing his best. NEVER ever should a manager display this sort of defeatist attitude, no matter how hard it gets. He's practically labelled himself a dead man walking, as if you do your best and you don't succeed... What do you have to do?

    No heart and no spirit. From players or management. Whatever happens, the club needs to be swept from top to bottom by NESV.

  • Comment number 57.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 58.

    The problem with Liverpool is that they have not been able to afford the 4 or 5 quality players they need to compliment the class acts like Torres, Gerrard and Reina. If they want to get back to being a top 6 side then they need to spend about £80-100M an dbring in a top striker, a wide man and three defenders who are comfortable on the ball.

    They also need to change their tactics and attack more, particularly at home. Roy is not the man for that. How about Holloway or Coyle for examples of British managers who send out attractive teams and seem to get the best out of their players?

  • Comment number 59.

    I doubt it's true that Van Gaal is interested, but if he is they should jump at the chance. Other than him the best manager to get is Benitez again, or give Dalgish until the end of the season.

    It seems to be just me but I would love to see a return to pass and move football of the 90s - midfielders that actually have talent instead of workhorses like Kuyt, Poulsen, Leiva or Meireles. I want good football or winning football, hopefully both. Humping it up to Ngog and Torres doesn't work and is painfully boring to watch.

    Benitez and Hodgson are the only two Liverpool managers in a long long time with no previous connection to the club or city. Benitez had a fantastic relationship with the fans - partly because he really didn't care what the press or other managers thought of him and got really involved with the club's history. On the other hand Hodgson alienates the fans with almost everything he says whilst pandering to the media.

    BTW I think most Liverpool fans from Liverpool really don't care what the English national press or 'pundits' think about our situation or club. We can see with our own eyes and knew that sacking Benitez and replacing him with Hodgson would lead to disaster. He has to go and it's best for all concerned if he goes sooner rather than later.

  • Comment number 60.

    49. At 5:28pm on 30 Dec 2010, The Belle Of Johnson County wrote:
    Rafa was hounded out of Anfield by a self-serving media agenda that was shamefully supported by supposed club "legends" thus giving the barely sentient xenophobe scum in our support every excuse to attack "The Spaniard".
    Hodgson was then appointed by the same media agenda.
    So forgive me if I'm not impressed by the media's belated recognition that there may be a gazillion-pound gorilla in the room. You're only doing it now because we've been frustrated to the point of outright mass dissent at Anfield for the first time since Souness sold a story to the Sun. Even though Sky immediately turned down the volume, we couldn't be ignored any more.
    I wouldn't trust any of you to tell me anything.
    I honestly don't know a single LFC supporter who wanted Hodgson in the first place and I don't know anyone who hasn't wanted him fired since the successful conclusion of Operation Anfield Epic Swindle. Add to this the fact that many of us no longer trust some of our current English "legends" while many of our best foriegn players clearly want out and the club is clearly in big trouble. But not so big that if names like O'Neill and Allardyce are even mentioned in a discussion about the future of Liverpool FC then I shall be forced to reach for my guns.
    Tell me, when can we expect the media to apologize for driving Rafa out and appointing Hodgson? Before or after Patrick Barclay goes skiing in hell?


    Rafa drove himself out of a job.

    It isn't the media's fault the squad and results both declined, nor that Rafa's record in the transfer market wasn't too hot.

    Shall I go on?

  • Comment number 61.


    Complete drivel!

  • Comment number 62.

    Johnson is one who really seems to not care. Runs up and down probably counting down the minutes in his head to home time to go and resume normal life and spend his millions.

    Torres, if he doesn't want to play, sell him and play anyone who cares, anyone.

    Koncheskey, not great but any confidence he may have had will have all but gone last night after being cheered off by the disgraceful fans. That will make him play better next time /facepalm.

    The 'fans' last night are a joke.

  • Comment number 63.

    So it's all RH's fault. Get a grip Liverpool fans and wake up and smell the coffee.

    Not one single manager, Mourihno included could make this lot a good team and Roy lost the players the day you decided you wouldn't give him a rousing applause at his first game in charge.

    A lot of Liverpool fans had made their mind up before he had a chance and all you did was give the players more power to alienate him farther from yourselves which is what has happened.

    Sure he bought some duds but then again what chance did they have anyway as they were introduced into a poor team in the first place.

    Konchesky is a prime example of how different you guys are from your predecessors. Most of us footy fans have always had a soft spot for Liverpool not because of great teams of the past or managers but the fans who always seemed to get behind their team no matter what.

    The day you decided not to back RH when he took over was the day you became the same as the rest of us and fell off your pedestal as a great bunch of loyal supporters who cheered no matter what.

    Just as fickle as any other fans now and before I get slated by all of you just ask yourself the last time you won the league. Been going rotten for years but you just found a convenient scapegoat and made him pay.

    Even the CL win was a fluke and not down to Saint Rafa.

  • Comment number 64.

    42 DBsKnees

    True, this long term plans and all that. Im always up for it. But on current evidence, the only way Liverpool look be heading is DOWNWARDS massively. there hasn't been a single +ve about them so far this season.

    Roy was always going to be the wrong appointment - misfit

  • Comment number 65.

    Kenny Dalglish lol

    It's Newcastle Mk. II

    The manager is not the problem, it's the club and their lack of leadership higher up for several years.

  • Comment number 66.

    Fans shouting for Dalglish are trying to express discontent with Hodgson, most Liverpool fans (including me) are not thinking Dalglish will wave a magic wand and all will be well but he can't be much worse than Hodgson until the end of the season.

    Some of the comments here are baffling, no Liverpool fan expected miracles and no one is under the illusion that we deserve to be at the top, but what we expect at the least is to not be 3 points away from the relegation zone in the New Year.

    People talk about the squad Benitez left, he left a squad short of the top 4 certainly with a lot of discontent, but nowhere near as awful as our position indicates. The 'leaders' at the club are not going to be leaders if they don't believe in the manager and his tactics, frankly I don't blame them. Torres in particular must be sick of chasing around like a blue arsed fly while long balls get pelted at his head.

    All of this could be taken in the short term though if Hodgson just wasn't so hopelessly out of his depth. In 6 months he's managed to have a go at the fans, appear seriously deluded (derby with Everton), fail to defend his players (Torres & Ferguson), attack his players (Agger) and pass the buck on a number of occasions.

    He knows he's not good enough, we know he is not good enough and we always did, but we do expect a certain amount of fighting spirit. All we have had from him since day 1 is lowered expectations, which were already low in the first place. Presumably he wants us to get to a point where anything above 17th is a bonus.

  • Comment number 67.

    "Benitez wasn't actually sacked, he walked out on Liverpool for an apprently better job at Inter, hence him having to pay them compensation (although to put a brave face on it, H&G claimed to have sacked him)."

    Rafa got paid compensation, not the other way around.

    Keep WUMming though, Dave.

  • Comment number 68.

    On paper, is this team as good as Fulham last season who performed so well in the Europa Cup and not badly in the league? Roy did a very good job getting an average bunch of players to overachieve last season, so what's the difference this year? Will the real reds please stand up!

  • Comment number 69.


    Hodgson won the top flight leagues in Sweden and a few other countries, won the domestic trophies there and guided Inter Milan to a Champions League final when he was give a good team to work with and he got Fulham to do miracles last season. He also has managed twice at international level.

    So yeah, an international manager with a room full of trophies who is used to working to small budgets with big results.

  • Comment number 70.

    @John Ashfield

    He got Inter to an UEFA cup final actually, and was pelted with lighters and other such items at the end of the game when they lost on penalties!

  • Comment number 71.

    nothing really logical about the choice of Hodgson. He was and will never be a Liverpool manager. His away record at Fulham last season was rubbish and in the last 6 seasons it's been just as bad. You would hope that the board did some research but apparently they jumped for the English manager of the Year. Poor choice. What has Hodgson actually won in the top leagues (Spain, Italy, Germany and here)? Not much, if anything. He's a nice guy about looks way out of his depth and talks his way into trouble. He seems weak. It's time for him to go. Complaints about support and the squad just make him seem even weaker - the crowd are there and get behind a manager that fights for the club, hodgson conveys apathy. The squad is not great but not terrible - plenty of internationals in the squad. If he can't inspire players to play for LFC his time is up.

  • Comment number 72.

    Oh and I also forgot to mention that you appear to miss one glaring stat from your gripes.

    Don't tell me that RH didn't or still doesn't get a lot of input from SL but he doesn't appear to get any flak....I wonder why?

  • Comment number 73.

    The comments in this thread just highlight the arrogance of Liverpool fans. Quite why you think Liverpool have a devine right to succeed is beyond me, 1990 was the last time they won the title, which at the end of this season will be a whopping 21 years. Glory hunters with little glory.
    Liverpool do have little more then a mid-table side which is where your midtable manager is taking you to. This is partly because of Benitez's systematic destroying of what was a very good side (Why sell Alonso? Why not bring in a top class striker?) and being in a worse financial state then all of the other top clubs.
    Hodgson has not started well, though, I would argue they are only marginally below a side with their talent level should be. Is there a manager out there who could do better without significant investment? Doubtful. Lets not forget, it was the wonderful Benitez who failed to quality for the CL last season, which at the time was predict to have a massive impact on Liverpools future and has, so far, proved correct.
    You do have to wonder whether Liverpool fans opinions on Benitez would be so clouded if they didnt fluke that CL final....

  • Comment number 74.

    It must be killing you, Phil, to have had to write this blog after your seemingly endless quest to get rid of Benitez, even though Liverpool fans and the really-should-know-better media were well aware that the problems lay in the behind-scenes demolition job done by Hicks, Gillet and Purslow.

    I'm not of the opinion that Dalglish should return as manager (personally I would have Benitez back in the job that he should never have been removed from - one relatively poor season after such massive strides was an appalling way to treat Rafa) but what is not in doubt is that we desperately need this man out the door as soon as is humanly possible.

    Talk about Benitez throwing money away (one of a long line of deceptions thrown up by 'pundits' given his net average spend was considerably less per season than what he earned the club in European and PL placings) is a joke compared to Hodgson's current track record - £90k per week on Joke Cole; millions tossed away on rubbish like Konsh**sky and Poorsen as well as the handing over of some of our brightest young prospects in the former deal.

    And that's before we get to the sale of Mascherano for half his value, the ludicrous loan deal/automatic loss of around £7m on Aquilani who's gathering MotM awards this season; the comedy tactics including playing Cole at left back. LEFT BACK! And of course, the desertion of Torres in order to chummy-up to his mate Ferguson, the slagging off of fans, the list seems endless.

    Let's face it, the man won that ridiculous Manager of the Year award in the same way Mickey Rooney won an Oscar. For the love of God, just get out. Nobody wanted you in the first place.

  • Comment number 75.

    I feel for Mr Hodgson who has taken up a very difficult job. IMO he is not as good a coach as Benitez. I can't see him pushing for the title even if given 5years. He does not seem to have the steel required for the job. If I were a Liverpool fan I would wish for Benitez to be brought back. The truth is that other top managers will sit up with Benitez in charge of Liverpool esp SAF who would be loving Hodgson at Anfield.

    The players are not in top shape and are lacking confidence but his choice of players (in transfer and match tactic)does not inspire. When Stevie G was injured and Raul Meireles and Lucas were playing midfield I thought they did well but with SG back he puts him straight back into the midfield (i felt he could have come in as a sub).

    His signings in Christian Poulsen, Joe Cole, and Paul Konchesky have not inspiried any confidence at all. also sending Insua and Aquilani on loan are bad moves. Insua in my opinion should be regular in Carling cups and as sub and Aquilani IMO will turn out good if allowed the chance (at least better than Poulsen) but Joe cole has been a HUGE flop (i was never excited by him anyway) Just imagine the difference in Cole and VDV of Spurs, and they are supposed to be similar players.

    All in all Hodgson in not going to suceed much at Liverpool and he does not have time on his hands.

  • Comment number 76.


    "If 3 points off relegation is doing 'reasonably well' then heaven help us!"

    There are ten points between 6th and 18th. Liverpool have two games in hand on teams in 6th and 7th, and are 7 points behind them. One game in hand on almost everyone else. All this whilst undoubtedly struggling with injuries.

    It's not spectacularly brilliant, but it's decent enough, all things considered. Liverpool were going to need to be lucky with injuries to compete for 5th (let alone 4th), and without that, they were always going to be in a close battle for 6th-8th place, and that's where they are. For Liverpool to be any higher in the table, Hodgson would have had to work miracles. Criticising a manager for failing to overperform is just daft.

  • Comment number 77.

    I had a bad feeling about him from the beginning, parading himself during the world cup on TV as if were using the media to his advantage

    God. didn't we learn anything from Gerard Houllier who himself was not on the ball when it comes to managing a top modern day club. I doubt its an age thing as other managers are proving themselves but I think these managers are just good men who are not able to compete in this fast paced business orientated sport anymore

    Lets stop this rubbish and bring back RAFA now there is a great manager right there!!

  • Comment number 78.

    I am no Rafa fan, but first him (and he bought the side) and then Hodgson?
    Both wrong? I don't think so.
    When will someone give the players the stick they deserve?
    You will find American owners looking at the players as assets and expecting them to perform, because that is what they are paid to do.
    Lets see them getting less lauded in the press and more accused for underachievement.
    Rooney last year is a great example.
    Couldn't be bothered for club or country.
    Was that down to AF?
    We don't need a cap, we need a cull and some of our money back!!!

  • Comment number 79.

    Quite frankly, a nodding dog would be an improvement on Hodgson.
    He is inept, out of his depth and floundering amid trying to lay the blame of his own failings at the feet of everyone else but himself. Now its the fans fault. I support Liverpool FC but I cant support this clown who is fataly damaging my club.

  • Comment number 80.

    Who is this 'Dave' @57?

    What is all this based on?

    1. Benitez was sacked - he tried to hang on until the very last minute.
    2. There are lots of managers better than Hodgson - pretty much everyone who's won a trophy in a major league (he hasn't)
    3. I was born in 1980 and can clearly remember back to around 1987 or 1988, and this is by far the worst standard of football that I can remember Liverpool playing and most probably the lowest points total over 1/2 a season.
    4. Liverpool's injuries this season have have only been slightly worse than normal IMO (you should of seen Benitez's at Inter)

  • Comment number 81.

    69, sorry mate, you lose credibility when you talk about the Swedish league, the Vodkat Premier is on a par with that!

    Fulham were woeful last season bar a cup run! I suppose you would have McLaren at your club after he acheived miracles with Boro?

    Used to gettingb big results with a small budget? Maybe in Sweden but not in the prem league. Why do you suppose his away record is so bad at all his English clubs? Could it be his completely negative approach to a game?

  • Comment number 82.

    Liverpool are the new Newcastle...

    This season was always going to be difficult, but the fans have refused to adapt their expectations with the new reality at the club. Without a massive injection of funds, Liverpool's fans need to accept that successes are going to be thin on the ground for them for a while.

    They ought to count themselves fortunate, they're in a much better position than other big names who got screwed over like Newcastle, Leeds, and going back a while, Man City when they dropped down the leagues.

    Instead of being grateful they're in a better position to return to glory days, they've instead acted like infants having a big sulk over having a manager who isn't a big name.

    Hodgson hasn't done himself any favours, but the half-hearted welcome the fans gave him is pretty rank. Mind you, he's lasted longer at Liverpool than Benitez at Inter... Actually he lasted *at* Inter longer than Benitez!

  • Comment number 83.

    All clubs go through tough times and to me, as a fan of Sheffield Wednesday, Liverpool fans are a disgrace. Its all well and good supporting your team in European games, but when you really need it, one-nil down at home against Wolves it was absent. I saw the game last night and Anfield was more like the Highbury library. The last ten minutes there was NO NOISE! YOU COULD HEAR THE WOLVES FANS! Hodgson might not be the best fit for Liverpool but at least the crowd could get behind the team. Liverpool SUPPORTERS (the ones at the game) - You are a disgrace to your once proud club.

  • Comment number 84.


    Try and find an official club statement that says he was sacked - there wasn't one. Just because some tabloids and rumour sites print something doesn't make it true. If Benitez was sacked, he'd have got the £16 million pay-off in his contract - but he didn't, so he evidently wasn't. What's more, Benitez found a new, better job immediately; Liverpool did not replace him with a better coach. Who do you really think instigated that?

    Liverpool (and Benitez) had a strong interest in saving face with the sacking story, but there's no evidence for it - everything in fact points the other way, including the fact that statements only ever said 'compensation was agreed' without specifying who was paying it.

  • Comment number 85.

    To all of you who say Liverpool have a crap squad and it's all Rafas fault.

    Liverpool sent most Players to the World Cup this year of all PL Teams!
    It's not a team of no names. It's a team full of internationals. Rafa Benitez brought Mascherano, Alonso, Garcia, Torres, Reina, Johnson, Kuyt, Agger to Liverpool...players Roy Hodgson never ever signed and never will. Roy brought Konchesky and Poulsen to Liverpool. I don't have more to say about that. He doesn't play Agger (he was fit yesterday), who is the best centre half at the club by a country mile, he doesn't play Aurelio, he loaned out Aquilani and brought in's an absolute disgrace.

    From the 14 players who featured yesterday, 8 outplayed Real Madrid one year ago at Anfield. So don't say Rafa left a mess behind.

    The team isn't good enough to win the leauge, but it's far better than 3 points of relegation.

    The turn against the fans was the last nail on the coffin. I hate every minute Roy Hodgson stays at Liverpool.

    And to all of you who say he's a great coach and achieved so much. What exactly did he achieve??? Simply nothing!!! NOTHING!! If you titles in Scandinavia are great achievments then oh my god!!

    A player like Mereiles has central midfield written all over him!!! Roy plays him on the right!!

    It's an absolute disgrace and a waste of talent!!

  • Comment number 86.


    You're simply lying to look clever.

    It's not working.

    Stop it.

  • Comment number 87.

    I think you need a manager is experienced working on a limited budget and who can motivate the current squad. A couple of names come to mind:

    Gary Megson, he did a great job at West Brom and played some nice football at Bolton.

    Ian Dowie, he nearly saved Hull City last year and also did a great job at Crystal Palace.

  • Comment number 88.

    I think Roy has had his try, and the club's just bigger than he can handle to keep people happy, we'll turn into a fulham team content with mid table finishes in a few years if things don't change.. Martion O'Neil has to be the best option by far to bring in, i'd have full faith in him as a manager, for better or worse

  • Comment number 89.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 90.

    For the revisionists who say that the current Liverpool squad isn't good enough - nine of the players who featured against Wolves started against Man Utd in March 2009 and won 4-1.

    To me that indicates that there's a core of players who are technically good enough. What's missing is the individual sharpness and motivation - they don't appear to believe or want it enough.

    I don't think Hodgson takes into account the opponents' strengths and weaknesses and he certainly hasn't figured out any patterns of play to get the best from his squad.

  • Comment number 91.

    I don't think this battle will last much longer, unfortunately for poor old Woy; he won't last until February.

    The current squad is unbalanced, understrength and lacks cohesion. Hodgson has made mistakes undoubtedly; his biggest is his refusal to criticise some woeful performances, which, for me, has wrecked his credibility with fans and players alike. BUT look at the squad. Like previous Leeds Utd and Newcastle sides to go down there are a couple of stand out players in Gerrard and Reina, but elsewhere, its either very average or waning players... not a good recipe for success.

    As an Arsenal fan, I don't know Liverpool and the workings of the club inside out but there appears to be a complete absence of desire and energy from top to bottom. Hodgson looks knackered, and all of his years by the way... the players look like theyve played 38 games already and fans seem to be just as glum and lethargic as the rest of them. If ever the words "rot setting in" apply to a situation - It is here. I don't blame Liverpool supporters, I'd like to make that clear. Paying good money for 90 mins of dross, too often; doesnt sit well with anyone.

    Liverpool in my opinion need a manager who is young, energetic and play the football that fans want to see. Guys like Klinnsmann, Rijkaard or Joachim Loew for a wild card pick, seem a good fit. As has already been pointed out, people like O'Neill and Allardyce come with a particular footballing ethos - and it wouldn't fit at Anfield.

    Anyway I hope they sort themselves out, because the league needs a strong Liverpool side in my opinion

  • Comment number 92.

    Hodgson isn't the problem, Gerrard is. He's overrated and they do better without him. The team needs rebuilding and that can't happen until Stevie is moved on and out.

  • Comment number 93.

    Oh, and a message for the media.
    We all understand what sells, but I for one would rather you just used
    a little journalism genius and reported the news.
    I am fed up of seeing nothing stories and rumour being talked in
    a particular direction to please your agendas.
    The BBC does it too, so please no more presenters pushing professionals around.
    Not what we pay for chaps.

  • Comment number 94.

    I think it will be at least 5 years before Liverpool win anything - for various reasons.
    Firstly, it used to be the case that anyone wearing the red strip was a bullet proof superman. That's just not the case now and hasn't been for some time, but Liverpool fans don't seem to realise it. Similar to Spurs fans who keep on about the double winning side of '61 - that's 50 years ago!
    Secondly, speaking of Spurs, Liverpool have been overtaken by them, along with the likes of Man City and possibly one or two others.
    Finally, the dead wood needs to be cleaned out. There's too much reliance on Gerrard and Torres, and last night even those two were quiet.
    Face it, reds fans - you're now in there with Bolton, Sunderland and Villa, when it used to be top 4.

  • Comment number 95.

    It is a fact that despite the Manager at the time, not because of him, the Liverpool squad has been punching above it's weight in terms of results for the past 3 seasons. Fair dues to the players, no credit to Benitez whose meddling and squad rotations frequently lost points and matches. Whilst there were one or two good signings he wasted many millions of pounds on poor ones. The fans apparently have seen fit to ignore these facts and are turning on Hodgson. Well I think that's misguided. Here are a few reasons why. Firstly, he hasn't had millions to spend, secondly he bought Konchesky in specifically to release Carragher from having to play full-back rather than his preferred centre-back, thirdly, don't forget he only got Joe Cole cos he was free, fourthly, he has to play centre midfielders wide cos Benitez didn't leave him any wingers and Cole has not filled the bill. I could go on about the injuries etc. but suffice to say Hodgson can only play with the cards he was dealt. The best thing the new owners can do is make money available for the January sales and let Hodgson deal some cards of his own and then judge him on results and not before. I reckon, given time, Hodgson will build a squad that can bring real lasting glory days back to Anfield.

  • Comment number 96.

    As a long standing LFC fan I was never really warmed to Mr.Hodgson's appointment. I did not think his way of playing and getting Fulham to Europa league is sufficient qualification for a Liverpool manager. Still one has to give time for the new comer to change things. But the way team played against Wolves was atrocious, it was Hodgson's decision to play Gerrard from the beginning. He was prepared to break up the formation during Gerrard's absence which showed some creativity & hope for improvement. So even after 19 games his knowledge of the team is poor. To cap it all now he is blaming fans for the team's failure. Before irreparable damage to LFC's ability to recover, Hodgson should admit defeat and GO.

  • Comment number 97.

    Re 12, I think English fans should score Scolari´s name off any list for possible jobs.

    Since leaving Chelsea under a cloud, he has achieved little if anything - a part-time job in Uzbekhistan with a team founded by a billionaire and a disappointing performance by Palmeiras back in São Paulo.

    As for Kenny Dalgleish, I feel it is time for him to take a stance and rule himself in or out. Personally, I don´t think it would be a good idea to have him back but his current position makes it difficult for Hodgson.

    Would David Moyes stick in the craw of L´pool fans? What about Mark Hughes or Alex McLeish?

  • Comment number 98.

    I think Roy will get more time, and rightly so. I had always thought that Liverpool's position in the top four was inflated under Benitez, who I think was awful, so the current position is probably about right for the squad with Torres not contributing as much as in the past. I think RH will prove to have been a good appointment if he is given time.

    Anyway, who would they appoint, it is a similar problem as Randy Lerner has? Only trouble at Villa is that GH was not a good appointment, Villa are in real danger of relegation, so a good alternative simply has to be found before the damage is too great.

  • Comment number 99.

    i question some of the comments on ere??? the prem league is all about instant success and that is what is expected of any lfc team including the manager, some of u guys seem to be havin ur own history lesson rather than discussin the present predicament were in it begs belief, half of u dont know wot ur talkin about, the reason fulham did so well last season u can find out urself by lookin at the teams in the league last term, a l o of small clubs with no or very little finances, this season is the same, its easy to point the finger at certain individuals but irrespective of the players the buck stops at he manager and he just aint good enuf, i dont think he can change a bed cover yet alone manage a football club.

  • Comment number 100.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.


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