Liverpool News: Time to move on, and stand together, at Liverpool FC.
By Kevin Morley.
At the beginning everything went smoothly. Brendan Rodgers was announced as the favoured choice for the vacant managers position and, as negotiations for his appointment continued, the fans, who were initially sceptical, came round to the idea that he might just be the man to turn things around at the sleeping giant that is Liverpool Football Club. Once he spoke, eloquently, with passion and an honesty and humility, it was clear that Brendan wanted to be seen as a 'man of the people'. In his first interviews he talked of 'fighting with his life for the club.' This was what the Liverpool fans needed to hear, it was almost a throwback to the days of Shankly 'drumming it into my players what a privilege it is to play for you.'
Things were starting to look positive at Liverpool. Despite the problems and ongoing Stadium expansion issues, it appeared that the club had finally appointed a manager for the long team. While Rodgers may not have arrived with a significant amount of top flight potential, he was certainly an educated student of the game, an astute media presenter and someone who had a footballing philosophy that the fans could relate to. August was beginning to feel like a time of optimism, when those who had thought we were in transition for another year suddenly started to believe that the club could make the top four at the first time of asking, once again taking their place among Europe's elite at the financial bonanza that is the Champions League. It was assumed that the owners would back the new manager financially, the goal scorer we had needed all of last season would be secured and we would move forward.
Transfer windows are notoriously tricky affairs though, especially when the club has decided that it will never again be held to ransom by clubs who believe their players are worth a couple of million more just because Liverpool are asking and they have foreign ownership who 'do not understand the game.' This was the first hiccup for Rodgers and his new optimistic approach at the club. Joe Allen, Fabio Borini and the two players signed as future stars were all good moves and all necessary additions to the squad, but they were not the 'big name' that a lot of fans had craved. Fans always talk of a marquee singing in the offing, but this time around it was not to be. Despite their best efforts, the club admitted that it had failed to land all of its targets, aswell as losing some of the players who were signed for exorbitant fees the previous summer.
The Liverpool fans reacted to this, viewing it as a major error by the owners and current Managing Director, Ian Ayre. The legends who have worn the Liverpool shirt down the years also took to the media circuit to claim that the manager had 'been let down' or, even worse, 'he had been misled'. To those of us who live for LFC, and were brought up on the Shankly, Paisley or Fagan years, this was a completely understandable, if not productive, reaction. Fans and ex players who love the club reacted out of this love, not out of a desire to see the owners embarrassed but because we all have such a deep desire to see the club back to where we all believe it belongs, back to where our support can take it and will take it once more.
The early part of the season has not gone to plan either. One point from a possible nine, and scraping into the group stages of the Europa League, was not what we had planned. It was not what anyone at Liverpool had planned but it is a FACT. It is a fact that some in the media have exploited to the full, with Liverpool being roundly criticised for their ownership, style of play, ageing heroes and anything else the press can find to throw at the club. What the club needs now, more than ever, is to move on from the summer and begin the season fresh against Sunderland this weekend. Three points, against a well organised Sunderland, managed by a man once coveted by some for the Anfield hotseat, would go a long way to move the club on from the bumpy ride that was August. However, this will not be achieved if the fans continue to look back to opportunities that have now passed us by.
We can not open the transfer window again. We have the players we have and we will go forward with them until January at the earliest. Daniel Agger can not go back to West Brom and avoid the collision that saw him sent off, Luis Suarez can not go back and put away some of the chances he created against Manchester City at Anfield, and Pepe Reina can not go back and reverse his mistakes against Arsenal. Most of all, the owners can not go back and rephrase their letter to the fans, or withdraw it completely. We can not fix the mistakes of yesterday, we can only look to make tomorrow better. Now is the time for Liverpool to move on, for the fans to give every player the kind of unbridled support Luis Suarez enjoys and to afford Brendan Rodgers the kind of loyalty that Kenny Dalglish and his forefathers enjoyed. Shankly had it tough too, and he also had his disagreements with the Board, but he had the same kind of belief as Rodgers and the fans indulged in this belief with him. Do this, and it could still be a better season than the media are wanting us to enjoy.
JUSTICE FOR THE 96.......AT LAST.......YNWA