Anorak News | For Whom The Bell Chimes

For Whom The Bell Chimes

by | 23rd, February 2004

‘“I KNOW I’m going to get slaughtered,” said Gerard Houllier, the Liverpool manager, after his side’s defeat to Portsmouth in the FA Cup, “but I don’t feel under any more pressure than before.”

As they say in Liverpool, ‘Au revoir, our kid’

“I think it is unfair to slaughter us, as looking at the performance we had the chances. I can’t blame my players.”

Anyone who reads that, as reported in the Independent, would be excused for asking who then should be blamed in instances of defeat. If it’s not the players and the manager, with whom does the fault lie?

It could be the referee in yesterday’s 1-0 defeat of the Reds. But, then, he did wrongly give Liverpool two penalties, although only one was taken.

Perhaps it was the weather? Or the grass? Or the wind? Or the fact that Liverpool play a brand of football that were it not for their famous kit and name would make them indistinguishable from just about any other mid-table Premiership team?

And while “clouds gather over Houllier“ (Telegraph) and the Liverpool fans bay for a regime change at Anfield, another manager makes ready his bags for departure.

The rumour that Sven Goran Eriksson is to replace Claudio Ranieri at Chelsea is now altered in the Mirror.

The new man in charge at Stamford Bridge will be the legendary Fabio Capello. The paper is of the opinion that Ranieri and Capello (now at Roma) will trade posts for next season.

Also on their way out of the Bridge will be a host of players, including Emanuel Petit, Mario Melchiot, Jesper Gronkjaer and Mario Stanic.

You’d be forgiven for forgetting any of that lot actually plays for the Blues, what with the size of the squad at Chelsea. But even the more visible Claude Makelele and Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink are also said by the Mirror to be on the verge of being shown the door.

But we cannot help thinking it’s all a bit early to say who is going where and when. The season has a long way to run and it is the proverbial marathon.

Houllier and Ranieri might yet have the last laugh. Although it could just be gallows humour…’

Posted: 23rd, February 2004 | In: Back pages Comment | TrackBack | Permalink