Liverpool Versus the Premier League PDF Print E-mail

As we head into 2011, Liverpool football club are at a point that sums up the miserable couple of years that their fans have had to endure. Roy Hodgson may have escaped the axe for now, thanks to Joe Cole`s late late winner against Bolton on New Year`s Day but at this point it`s impossible to see Liverpool aiming for anything better than a Europa league place at the end of May.
It seems an awful long time now since the club`s dominance in the 70`s and 80`s and hard to believe it`s just six years since their improbable European Cup triumph in 2005, their last major honour. Equally however, it`s difficult to understand just what has gone wrong.

Rafael Benitez, as much as Hodgson, still seems to be attracting a fair proportion of the blame over his signings. Alberto Aquilani and Andriy Vorodin to name but two, currently lay testament to Benitez` profligacy in the transfer market. So far Hodgson`s most telling acquisition may be Paul Konchesky, a capable journeyman but a player many feel just isn`t good enough for a club like Liverpool.
Certainly poor transfers are getting the blame in some quarters and Hodgson himself has played the new manager`s traditional trump card and said `this isn`t my team`. We`ll know very soon if he gets the chance to do anything about it.
Injuries are the second most obvious choice as the catalyst for a club`s poor campaign and it`s true that any side would struggle without its two key players, namely Gerrard and Torres who have been absent for a fair portion of the season. However, if you look at other sides at the top, all of them go through this at some stage, it`s just strength in depth that makes them cope
The fact is, if you look at the track record of Liverpool`s signings, their statistics show that they`re not poor players and maybe they just haven`t adapted to the rigours of Premiership life. A good example of this was put before everyone who witnessed the club`s game away at Stoke last season. There may be other examples but if a side has physical issues, Stoke will highlight them and in the end the hosts` game was just too much for their visitors and in basic football terms, Liverpool just didn`t seem to `fancy` it.
Equally though, sides around them just seem to progress, while Liverpool have at best stood still. Tottenham have improved steadily under Redknapp while Manchester City now look set to reach the heights that their open cheque book demands.
The rest of the season seems crucial to Liverpool`s long term future. Without European football of any kind it will be difficult to attract players of the calibre that will put them back amongst the elite and although Gerrard at 31 may have missed his big money move, it seems unlikely that Torres will hang around too long to see who he`s drawn against in the early rounds of the league cup.

So a Europa league place is a must and it will be fascinating to watch the next few months of football streaming online to see if Liverpool can achieve it.

Last Updated on Monday, 03 January 2011 00:28