Axl Rose screeches ‘where do we go now?’ in the classic Guns n’ Roses track Sweet child o’ mine. A sentiment that perfectly sums up Liverpool Football Club right now.
So where do we go now? After what has turned out to be a nightmare few weeks, which has seen us drop out of champions league contention and slip meekly out of the FA Cup.
The season 2014/15 has all in all been a rollercoaster – from the shocking early season form to a wonderful winning run – and then back to shocking once again. Tactical changes galore, new formations, square pegs in round holes, and question marks over pretty much all the new signings. It’s been, truth be told, tough to take. It feels hugely disappointing after last years title chase.
So what next? We seem to have our commercial side buttoned down, big renegotiated deals with New Balance and Standard Chartered have been secured, significantly increasing revenue. This is Ayre’s strength, and has put upwards of £60 million a season into the bank, without touching the newly inked Premier League cash. We also finally have traction on the stadium, something we never thought was coming.
Even with the commercial aspects covered, it’s what happens on the pitch that really matters to the fans. Limping to Europa league qualification hardly seems like a great return on £100+ million in investment, regardless of losing Suarez. Injuries haven’t helped but to put it simply, the potential wasn’t able to deliver, especially when the experience failed so badly this season.
Media suggest Rodgers could be on borrowed time, I can see why this is reported, he should though be given another season. With the spectre of Klopp being available, the pressure is on Rodgers, and this may be a hard decision for FSG knowing he’s there for a limited time, before being secured by a big club. Rodgers has earned another season, a season in which he should get to say who he wants in his squad. Abolish the transfer committee and let the manager manage.
Liverpool need a another big investment, upwards of £100m, money they have. They also need to buy 4 starters, big players, players who better the first XI. Lacazette, llarramendi, Depay, Khedira to name four who’d make the first team stronger. If it’s Ings, Hughes etc then it’s another season of treading water and bye bye Coutinho. This coming season a statement of intent is needed or the club will have made it clear, top 6 and not titles are what the agenda is. Is this any better than what Newcastle get under Ashley? Maybe to a different scale but the model is the same.
Stick with Rodgers, buy top ‘top’ players and we will succeed. Follow the same game plan and I’d suggest nothing changes.
By Chris Hutchins