This season’s euphoria is yet to die down, since King Kenny has been deemed as surplus to requirements at Liverpool FC. Hot property one minute, outcast the next.
“Every manager is under pressure from bad results. Football is now a results-based industry, a must-win industry, and I don’t see any way of getting away from that.”- Sir Alex Ferguson
The Liverpool manager post is fast becoming like the Three Lions hot seat, ‘‘a poisoned chalice’’. The hunt is on for a new gaffer that will bring to the kop, a fast free flowing style of football.
So many names have been bandied about; the likes of Frank De Boer of Ajax have turned down the offer while coaches like Andre Villas Boas are stalling and reviewing the offer critically, and even neutrals alike are clamoring for the return of Rafa Benitez.
For all the coaches that have been linked to the top job at Liverpool, the right replacement is actually still at the club, I present to you STEVE CLARKE.
STEVE WHO?! People will ask, ironically, it was the same thing that was asked when Pep Guardiola was given the reins at Barcelona. Four years and 13 trophies after, Barcelona fans just can’t stop chanting his name.
Stephen “Steve” Clarke is a former Scottish football player, had stints at St. Mirren then at Chelsea, winning three major trophies with the Blues towards the end of his career.
Steve Clarke is in seventh for the most number of appearances made in Chelsea’s history, and one of the most reliable and consistent defenders ever to appear for the club.
After retiring as a player, he moved into coaching and has worked as an assistant manager for Newcastle United, enjoyed working for four years as a coach alongside Jose Mourinho for Chelsea, and then alongside Gianfranco Zola as assistant manager at West Ham United.
Immediately after Kenny Dalglish was appointed, he began his task of reviving Liverpool’s fortunes by appointing Steve Clarke as his No. 2.
Working under the likes of Ruud Gullit, Jose Mourinho, Gianfranco Zola and Kenny Dalglish sure has its benefits, and each gaffer listed above would have seen something special about Steve Clarke to have him as part of their back room staff.
FSG appointed Kenny Daglish to bring the glory days, and set upon funding the revolution which resulted in the purchase of British talents like Andy Carroll, Charlie Adams, Bellamy, Henderson and Stewart Downing. Only Luiz Suarez seems to be a true value for money, while the others had their huge astronomical fees as a cross too heavy to bear.
The notion– lack of experience will definitely come up, citing Steve Kean of Blackburn and Terry Connor of Wolves as excellent examples as to why assistant managers should never be handed the reins.
We only need to look at success recorded by Pep at Barca, and who have in turn, handed it over to his assistant Tito Villanova and more recently former assistant manger Roberto Di Matteo of Chelsea FC who has performed admirably.
Liverpool are never going to play the tiki-taka free flowing football like Arsenal, which is what Roberto Martinez, Frank De Boer and Andre Villas-Boas will look to impart, but Steve Clarke, being a defender by trade and fabled for his tactical nous, will have the team playing the Liverpool way using the resources available. FSG has already spent £100 million the season before and will be looking for dividend for their money’s worth.
The 3-5-2 formation used by Liverpool in the 2010/11 season to beat Chelsea home and away during the Premier League season, was attributed to Steve Clarke as he knew Chelsea FC’s strengths and weakness, and set the right formation to counter their game.
Steve Clarke, 48, would be the perfect long-term solution, but should be handed the funds and time to build a new team capable of fighting for honours.
Written by Ibezimako Ajaero
Follow me on Twitter @dejazimako007
Published with permission from O-Posts.