Well here we are, some 7 weeks after the end of the season and 6 days until the Reds start their pre season in earnest at Tranmere and what has gone on in the world?
– I got married for a start! Yup after the end of the season! Although the party was on the opening day of the Euro’s!! It is a good job that the opening game was rubbish…
– There has been the usual rubbish about who is going where and when and Gareth Barry is still not worth Â£18 million!
– Hicks and Gillett are allegedly communicating again! Does this involve Rick Parry communicating with them and Rafa at all?
– Javier took out Anderson in a World Cup qualifier to worry the Mancs then got picked as an overage player for Argentina so we will not seem him until the early part of September no doubt.
– Lucas is part of Brazil’s squad for the Olympics too.
– Oh and yeah July 1st came and went along with Harry ‘œI was not given a fair crack’ Kewell! Would like to say good luck in Turkey but by all accounts you just left without saying a word to your team mates who carried you in the games you played. Arrogance at its best!
This is going to be a ‘˜mish mash’ about everything I can think off in football since the season ended so bear with me!
Well firstly, let’s just say well done to Alonso, Torres, Arbeloa and Pepe. The new European champions. No sooner had the tournament ended then the usual classless rags started printing rubbish that Chelski were about to tempt Liverpool with an Â£80 million bid for Torres. I will admit to be a little worried given the money situation. However one other than El Nino himself simply said he was going nowhere so well done to him.
Speaking of money at Anfield, I know season tickets are up but the worrying thing is that I have been advised that the single cheapest ticket price for next season will start at Â£37! That’s around a 12% hike (if it is true!). In fact the biggest worry of all is the fact that supposedly it is going to cost you Â£25 per year to go on the waiting list for a bloody season ticket! If Hicks is a billionaire then maybe he should treat us with a little more respect like Abramovich does at Chelsea or Ashley at Newcastle and throw some of his personal money into the club. To date neither him nor Gillett seem to have done that. Maybe I am wrong but if I am, it is not that far wrong!
Is this the reason that work has allegedly started on the new stadium. I will believe it when I see the heavy machinery in there doing some proper work, not the blokes with spades digging a few trenches. How can you start on a stadium yet not have all the funding. The North West Development agency is holding back on their funding part as the club has still yet to provide details that they have the money to build the stadium!
Now for Gareth Barry, don’t get me wrong I do rate him but not at Â£18 million! If reports are believed this morning, we have accepted the Â£10 million bid for Crouch from Portsmouth and that will fund Barry at Â£15 million with bonus payments for other stuff being made to Villa. Martin O’Neill is a strange bloke. Since when did becoming the last England captain (for the 1 game!) inflate your price! Capello would have give me a go of the armband had I been in the squad! If Crouch is to go I would have preferred he go to Spurs as part exchange for Robbie Keane. A red fan through and through and a player that enjoys his football and gives everything he can for whoever he plays! Again, if it is true then I wish big Crouchy well, he did great for us (bar his first 18 games!) and am sorry to see him go.
Xabi, Xabi, Xabi, what are you doing, please stay and fight for your place. Imagine the midfield choices for Rafa on matchday! However, we all know about your last season. Injury and a baby have caused a few issues but let it go (and you Rafa) and get down to what you do well, ‘œpinging’ that ball around with immense accuracy. Oh yeah, I hope little John is doing well too. Just imagine this little scouser with 2 Spanish parents. Funny but it shows what football can do within a family. No matter what you do though, I wish you well be it here or in Italy. Hopefully that will be put to bed sooner rather than later.
Gianni Zuiverloon has just been signed by West Brom and said he consulted his good friend Ryan Babel about coming to England! How much of a REAL friend is Babel?
Did he not say ‘œkijk vriend, speel ik voor de Club van de Voetbal van Liverpool, zult u voor het Westen Brom zo spelen daarom daarna seizoen zult u een liga onder me spelen!’ (which basically translates to ‘œlisten mate, I play for LFC you play at West Brom which means you will play the league below after next season!)
My heart goes out to the family of the 2 boys sadly killed in what is an alleged drink driving accident involving Plymouth keeper Luke McCormick. When will people learn, not just footballers but everyone.
Oh and whilst we are on about Jail, Joey Barton! Due out imminently and pleading guilty to a second assault on former team mate D’abo! I don’t condone what he has done but he seems in a right mess in the head. He is not the greatest player but has been given some talent so he seriously needs help. I think he is getting some form of rehab from the Sporting Chance clinic. As for the Newcastle fans demanding he be sacked, I admire their stance and do actually agree but in the world of Football business, if they sack him, they lose some Â£5.7 million and a player who will be snapped up by someone else (maybe even a rival) just like Lee Hughes formerly of West Brom and now of Oldham. Funnily (or not) Oldham’s website states “However Hughes left the game for personal reasons’. Those reason not actually states but killing someone in a drink drive case and then ‘œdoing a runner’ then subsequently being locked up is a little more than personal reasons.
So far we have now signed Philip Degan and Andreas Dossena for the first team and are boosting up the youth, academy and reserves. Diego Cavalieri, the Palmerias goalkeepker is reportedly about to sign as backup for Pepe so it looks like Carson has well and truly gone. Fair enough though, Carson is too good for a backup and Itandje was too bad!!
We have supposedly signed Nikola Saric for around half a million quid from Herfolge of Denmark. If he is anything like Agger (other than last season) then he should be a good one for the future. We also have 3 Hungarians on trial at the moment, all from MTK Budapest. The issue with the younger signings are that you can usually say they will get their chance quickly if they are likely to be around the fist team.
AND, Agger himself is back! We really did miss him last season. Skrtel was good once he settled in but now with Agger back and Sami in for another year (Give the man a testimonial) the defence is looking great. Carra and Sami can have a few more rests (although I am sure Carra will not be happy at that but he is older).
As if nothing was noticed but the backroom is also back into full swing with the legend that is Sammy Lee back as assistant gaffer! (Good luck to Alex Miller in Japan who has already made a good start) and also Mauricio Pellegrino has come back as a coach. Hopefully his spell as coach will be much better than as a player.
Next week we start the friendlies. Tranmere is the destination, and I have never been to such an early pre-season friendly. The daughter is a tad gutted to say the least. All excited to go to the match (as far as she is concerned it is an away game!) I had to let her know that her idol Fernando Torres is not going to be there. She was gutted! ‘œPhone him dad, tell him he has to be there to play because he is brilliant!’, yeah as my mobile is full of footy star phone numbers!!!!
Let’s hope it will be a good start to a great season and I will concur with Carra and hope that we will still be challenging with 10-15 games to go. We know we can do it in Europe but now we MUST do it in the Premiership!
As PJ & Duncan said, ‘œLet’s get ready, let’s get ready, let’s get ready to rumble!’