10 questions fans are commonly asked: Liverpool
Let me be honest.
Life as a football fan is not an easy ride. You always have to put up with the snide remarks from rival fans, and you almost always have your team’s weekend shenanigans (if any) blown out of proportion by an incredibly biased media, who should look at themselves and be ashamed of their lazy journalism at times.
But on the other hand, I would never, and I mean NEVER, give it up for anything in the world. The exhilarating experience of watching and attending matches, chanting for your heroes and especially the time when you get to give it back as good as you got from your biggest rivals, are some of the most precious moments in the life of a football fan.
The goals, the tackling (yes, I consider it an art), the goal-line clearances, stoppage time winners etc. are all a part of why we love football and I would be lying if I said that football has never taken priority over what some ‘normal’ people might term as ‘more important’ commitments.
Being a Liverpool fan has been hard for the last three years. Despite being prone to getting the mickey taken out of you by rival fans, we still stick by the club in times of hardship. Rival fans always have questions for me about my team and their development, and the questions range from serious ones to downright hilarious ones (in their eyes).
Some of the questions rival fans always ask me, as a Liverpool fan, are:
Serious question: With FSG evaluating so many options before choosing Rodgers for the managerial hot seat, wouldn’t it have been more sensible to promote Steve Clarke straight from the coaching setup?
Answer: I can only speculate on why FSG decided to go through a bucket load of options before eventually signing Rodgers, but I’m pretty certain that they didn’t want to promote Steve Clarke right away from the coaching setup due to his lack of managerial experience. He’s an excellent coach, his work at West Ham, Chelsea and Newcastle is a testament to that fact.
Also, Clarke has maintained that FSG sacked him, and he did also make several poor errors along with Dalglish last season. He lacked the one thing FSG were looking for; a proven pedigree. He did get back at us with West Brom’s 3-0 win on the opening day, but Rodgers was the more proven choice.
Funny question: Are controversies the only way Liverpool can snatch the Merseyside spotlight from Everton this season?
Answer: Same can be said down in Manchester, with your best players Mark Halsley and Mark Clattenburg stealing the spotlight on a regular basis! Everton have been excellent this season, no doubt about it. But our performances have been excellent, barring the hapless shooting and lack of penetration in the final third. We went toe-to-toe with Everton and nearly beat them, something the United faithful can’t claim. As the season unfolds, if our scoring ratio improves, we will have the last laugh in Merseyside. No doubt about it.
Serious question: Silverware chances?
Answer: The Europa League and the FA Cup, as we’ve already been dumped out of the League Cup. In league play, we can make it to the Top 4, only IF we get a new prolific striker and a scoring midfielder, as our midfielders seem to have been heavily influenced by Fernando Torres and Andy Carroll. We play excellent football, something that many experts have pointed, but the lack of a final touch has cost us dearly.
Funny question: Luis Suarez or the old Torres?
Answer: It’s actually a very hard question, because both players have extremely contrasting styles. It would’ve been an amazing partnership, if Torres was still at Liverpool, as Suarez creates a bucket-load of chances each game. Torres had a superior midfield during his time, and Suarez has only now received a good midfield to work with. I would pick Luis Suarez, as he is a better overall team player. A one of a kind player, he’s been absolutely imperious this season, despite missing several chances. Mata and Suarez have been the picks of the season, and while Torres at his prime was far more lethal, he doesn’t contribute as much overall.
There’s no player like Luis Suarez in the Premier League, and it is no wonder that the likes of Real Madrid want him, despite being the league’s most hated player since Cristiano Ronaldo.
Serious question: Are there no strikers in the youth setup that can be fast tracked to the first team like Sterling?
Answer: The two promising strikers in the youth team are currently Adam Morgan and Samed Yesil, but both of them are nowhere near ready for first team action. Morgan has been compared to Robbie Fowler and has been praised by ‘God’ himself, with his finishing being his strong point. He played in the Europa League against Hearts, and will slowly be introduced to the first team.
Samed Yesil is a player we bought from Bayer Leverkusen for £1 million this summer, despite never having played a senior game for them. He’s got a ton of potential, having scored 32 goals in 31 games for Germany at youth level. Again known for his potency, he played against Swansea in the League Cup, but clearly showed he isn’t ready for first team action. Dani Pacheco too has threatened to break through for quite a while, but hasn’t as yet. All three are incredibly talented. Patience is the key.
Funny question: Is Suarez taking any diving classes for the rest of the squad?
Answer: Of course he is! It’s open to everyone! Santi Cazorla has benefited greatly from it already!
Serious question: What is Sahin’s role? He looks lost at times and Henderson is always lost. Who has a longer future at the club?
Answer: I shall not lie. I’ve been very disappointed with the performances of Nuri Sahin. He was supposed to be our ‘X-Factor’, and help us continue our revival as a serious threat to the Top 4. Keep in mind that he’s been injured a lot over the past year, and Real wasted his talent by letting him rot on the bench. Plus it’s the Premier League, the most physically challenging league in the world. He’ll need more time before he can make a sustainable impact for us, if he ever can. Problem is Sahin wants to play in a deeper role, the Joe Allen role, but Rodgers has been playing him out of position. If available, Liverpool would definitely buy him, as he has tremendous potential.
Henderson on the other has made strides this season, with very noticeable improvements in his game. He’s better going forward, and more than capable of picking out a crucial pass. Henderson isn’t always ‘lost’. That was last season. He can be a crucial member of the squad for years to come.
Funny question: Raheem Sterling is talented on the field as well as on the bed. Which do you rate higher?
Answer: Well they are just rumours after all, and I don’t see why his personal life should be of any concern whatsoever to us, the fans, or any rival fans. If he really has three kids, then kudos to the lad!
The Sun, of all newspapers, reported that particular story, and that’s all I have to say about that.
Serious question: Can Liverpool survive without Luis Suarez?
Answer: To be blunt, the answer is one big no. The West Ham game was a one-off, but the team continues to build on the game, then Luis Suarez will become the biggest contributor to the team, rather than being the only contributor.
He’s been absolutely phenomenal this season, and his work rate has been unmatched. No one can dribble like him. He’s a special, special player, and any team in the world would be lucky to have him.
Funny question: Has Brendan Rodgers lost his brain, saying the Liverpool can aim for the second spot?
Answer: That was a rallying cry to be precise, for the Reds to up their ante. Rodgers has high ambitions for the side, but he knows it will take some time. The comments were made to instill belief in the squad, that they can reach the promised land. Second spot is out the question, everyone knows that.
The elusive fourth spot is still within reach, with many teams such as Spurs, Everton and Arsenal battling it out for the spot. It’s a long season ahead, and anything can happen in the Premier League.Published 16 Dec 2012, 18:58 IST