Right first things first, I am no businessman. Therefore I am not qualified to comment on Fenway Sports Group’s strategy for world domination, and monetisation of the “Brand.” As a supporter of Liverpool F.C. for about 40 years, I do feel qualified to talk about the aspirations of fellow reds when it comes to matters on the field.
It has to be said on both fronts there is much to be happy about right now. At least on the face of it, the Club seems to be going the right way. Sponsorship is up, the Warrior deal was impressive, and we have just a glimmer of light at the end of the stadium tunnel.
We can also be pleased with John Henry’s handling of the Suarez situation in the Summer. When the vultures were circling, our principle owner was resolute. He even fired a sarcastic barb, that any Scouser would be proud of, in the direction of the Emirates. Rodgers is also doing a fantastic job. He must share the credit for the fact that Suarez agreed to sign the very ambitious contract the club put before him.
However, having acknowledged all of that, as we arrive at the January transfer window it’s time to take stock of where we are and what we can still achieve. The Club sit just six points off the top of the table. Make no mistake this is a tremendous achievement for a team that finished 7th last year. It is even more impressive given the loss of Suarez for 5 games. Gerrard, Sturridge, Enrique and Allen have also been missed.
Our limitations were laid bare over the Christmas. After thumping Spurs 5-0 confidence was high going into the City game on Boxing Day. We were top of the league after all. The boys didn’t disappoint. Particularly in the second half, but ultimately came up wanting. The performance against Chelsea was more of the same. We were the almost men once again.
Yes the refereeing was poor in both games, but great teams manage to overcome that. The fact is the first 11 can match any team in the premier league, but as a squad we are just not there yet. A glance at the respective benches of City and Chelsea proves the point.
I am not saying anything new here. The owners and Rodgers have both acknowledged this fact. The thing that worries me though, is continued talk of evolution, of looking for players we “can afford”.
Yes, January is a time of year when clubs can get ripped off. It is a sellers market. I get it I really do. I just can’t help feeling that there is a golden opportunity here. Let me repeat 6 points away, just 6 points with a limited squad, and Sturridge, Enrique and Gerrard on their way back. It is time to go for it in my opinion.
I don’t know who we are looking at, but I would just plead with our owners to back the transfer committee and the manager to the hilt. If it means slightly overpaying so what, just go for it. Can you imagine the celebrations if Liverpool won the league. Being a supporter is all about dreaming so why not? It may be unlikely, but its not impossible right now.
I can tell you now that the Istanbul celebration would pale by comparison. Any owner, or manager would be granted legendary status for evermore. So come on John get the cheque book out. Your place in history awaits.
January 3rd, 2014