Monday’s Papers: John Henry and broken goods

Liverpool have a lot of work to do. After the heroics of Martin Broughton, Christian Purslow and Ian Ayre (and QC Grabiner) to rid the club of Tom Hicks and George Gillett last week, yesterday reminded us that the fix doesn’t filter onto the pitch.

Although the financial future looks bright for the club, the on-field problems have a lot of work to do. Few can remember a Merseyside derby lost in such a unpassionate way than Sunday’s 2-0 defeat to Everton at Goodison Park.

Never the club to have knee-jerk reaction to results, the questions are now mounting on Roy Hodgson with the Reds having picked up on 6 points from a possible 24, and sitting 19th in the league table.

Everton's Mikel Arteta (2nd L) shoots to score his side's second goal during their English Premier League soccer match against Liverpool at Goodison Park in Liverpool, northern England, October 17, 2010. REUTERS/Phil Noble (BRITAIN - Tags: SPORT SOCCER IMAGES OF THE DAY) NO ONLINE/INTERNET USAGE WITHOUT A LICENCE FROM THE FOOTBALL DATA CO LTD. FOR LICENCE ENQUIRIES PLEASE TELEPHONE ++44 (0)

Jim White The Telegraph
“Midway through this, his first game as owner of the club, John W Henry turned to his business partner, Tom Werner, and whispered something into his ear. It is not clear what he said, but the gist might well have been: “Where did you put the money-back guarantee?”

“On the evidence of their first Merseyside derby, the new Americans in town were monumentally overcharged for their £300 million. This was an introduction to their new property so horrible they might be wise to check the get-out clause.”

Kevin McCarra The Guardian
“Individualism is still the affliction of the Anfield line-up. With men such as Xabi Alonso and Javier Mascherano gone, there is less cohesion and focus to the play. Recognising that, a player such as Steven Gerrard can scarcely resist the temptation to attempt putting matters to rights single-handedly. He could do that in his mid-20s but it was an approach even then that spoke of the frailties in others who could not combine with him. Gerrard impressed lately while deputising for Rio Ferdinand as England captain, but it must have been revitalising to link with team-mates who are of a similar calibre.”

Sam Wallace The Independent
“If Hodgson really thought this was a decent performance then Liverpool’s problems really do run deeper than even Henry had first presumed. The American has said that he has no intention of getting rid of Hodgson but his club is fast reaching the point when critical decisions will have to be made. Liverpool have fewer points than Hull City did at the same stage of the season 12 months ago.

“It did not look too clever as early as the first few minutes when Jamie Carragher shouted at Torres to make a run in order to receive a pass and Torres responded by putting his finger to his lips. Increasingly there is the feeling that Torres is doing Liverpool a favour by turning out every week and that the club have become a millstone for him rather than a great platform on which to perform.”

Martin Samuel Daily Mail
“The reality is that, Steven Gerrard aside, the drive has gone. Fernando Torres is playing like a man who considers every further minute spent in a red shirt to be a horrible waste of his time, while Joe Cole is playing like the man Fabio Capello doesn’t pick, rather than a man he should.
“Rewind 12 months and the bottom three were Hull, West Ham and Portsmouth, only one of whom escaped. And Hull had more points than Liverpool do now from the same matches.

“Yet, it is this belief that mighty Liverpool cannot be considered relegation candidates that is perhaps their biggest enemy. Perhaps even Evertonians do not believe it, hence the delayed gag after Tim Cahill’s goal went in; they had to be reminded that this malevolent fantasy was now reality.”

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