Is this a high-tide moment for Liverpool?

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Post by Swanhends Sat May 03, 2014 11:47 pm

I've been thinking today about whether Liverpool coming up short in this title race would see the chance will have slipped away from them and basically be a repeat of 2009

Here are my conflicted lines of thinking:

1) City and Chelsea are generally expected to spend significantly every summer. while Liverpool are not exactly misers, they have less room for error when it comes to the transfer market (even with CL funds), and will be under heavier pressure to get it just right. On top of this Mourinho seems to peak with his teams in the 2nd/3rd seasons with the club, and City were clearly hampered by the time Aguero spent out. Obviously Moyes is out at United, and they still possess a squad that ran away with the title less than a year ago and now Mata, so a repeat of this season is not exactly expected again next year. Arsenal will hope to have Ramsey for the full season next year, but of the major clubs I think they're clearly the least likely to make significant improvement over the summer. Competition is fierce at the top, the transfer market this summer will be huge for Liverpool as they've got to prepare for the increase in fixtures that are coming with CL football

2) This is still only Rodgers 2nd season with the club, so in that sense things would only be expected to improve. In addition while Liverpool's margin for error is smaller than that of the other clubs in the transfer market, their increased leverage in player negotiations with their inclusion in the CL definitely increases the weight they have in the market. Also in their favor is that when compared to the other clubs mentioned in this post, they definitely have youth on their side. And they would hope to be able to count on Suarez for more games next season since he won't be starting the season on a suspension

Which way are people leaning on this idea?
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Post by Mr Nick09 Sun May 04, 2014 12:17 am

Well i think City have the most talented squad in the league. They will add players, so if they win it this year, i will still make them my favorite to win it all next year. Their attacking talent is just too great and too consistent compared to the other teams, and they did it with pelle being a noob epl coach, demi in defense and kun out for long periods of time.

And because Pool attacking potentially is almost equally great, i dont expect them to disappear at all. they are too young, play too fast and with too much movements to just fall off next season. Yes, they do need signings, but it's depth that they need the most. I do expect them to slow down a lot, or for teams to slow them down more effectively, but they will still be up there.

Chelsea, is a no brainer. Mou has the best record against top epl sides this year, what he is missing are genuine scrub killers. He has a team full of guys ready to sacrifice and to get result in big games, but if he puts his hands on a scoring machine and maybe another winger that can bring goals vs scrubs more regularly, he will be champions, no doubt about it.

Arsenal...well, Ramsey, Walcott, Ozil and a proper CF, if fit, can change everything. they get points vs scrubs no problem, but they dont do it enough vs big teams. Mentally i dont know if they can endure the title chase all year long, but we will see.

That's my top 4, predicting the champion is an exercise for another time.

As for United, to me it seems like they have lost too much mental edge to just get it all back next year as if nothing happened. Van Gaal is a great manager, can turn things around, but the fear factor teams use to have for united disappeared this year. Teams like Sunderland or Crystal Palace will attack them as if they are on par. Next year will be a grind for them. might be wrong, but that's what i see right now.
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Post by DeletedUser#1 Sun May 04, 2014 12:25 am

Well, Rodgers just confirmed that we will be buying 5-6 players this summer, so he is clearly aware of the need for quality. It said it all that today City were able to bring on David Silva off the bench in crunch time whereas we had to rely on Aspas last week. As Nick mentioned, the core of the team bar Gerrard is very young and with a season of title challenge, their in-game management and experience will only improve. I also expect Sterling to absolutely explode next season. While people point out people will figure out shutting us down, they forget that we can hardly be any more casual defensively next season compared to this. And teams around spending doesn't mean they'll get better. Chelsea finished 14 points above us last season and spent 100m on top of it, and now are likely to spend below. Man U aren't gonna become a SAF dominant side again over one summer either. And the difference of now with 2009 was that key players were sold at the time and manager and ownership was in trauma, whereas those things are very stable now, plus the core of the team is a lot younger.

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Post by Onyx Sun May 04, 2014 12:29 am

I read a Guardian article that said in the title Rodgers would sign 5-6 players, but in the actual article Rodgers doesn't say that. hmm

http://www.theguardian.com/football/2014/may/03/brendan-rodgers-liverpool-six-new-signings

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Post by Lex Sun May 04, 2014 12:32 am

Yohan Modric wrote:I read a Guardian article that said in the title Rodgers would sign 5-6 players, but in the actual article Rodgers doesn't say that. hmm

http://www.theguardian.com/football/2014/may/03/brendan-rodgers-liverpool-six-new-signings
Is Rodgers going to write a sternly written letter to the editor of the Guardian now? hmm
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Post by RED Sun May 04, 2014 3:19 am

They have a young squad, a talented young manager, and the experience these players gained from this title run will serve them in good stead for next season. With the allure of CL football, and the positive football they play, I'm sure they won't find it too hard to get some quality addition to their squad next season. So with their much needed depth getting fixed somewhat, they should be able to juggle all comps. Whether they maintain a challenge on all fronts remains to be seen.

One thing is for sure though, all their competitors will get stronger. Chelsea will fix their striker issues + rebuild on other key areas. City will as per, spend big. Arsene Wenger is rumoured to spend big this summer too, and as for us, we won't be handicapped by Moyes, plus we're gonna spend big and strengthen too. Spurs and Everton won't be sitting idle too.

Next season will more tougher for them than this season, that's for sure.
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Post by lszanto Sun May 04, 2014 3:31 am

I think next year will be harder in terms of more games but at the same time they will have a better/deeper squad so if they get transfers right then they should be fine in that regard. Don't know if enough managers are smart enough tatically to be able to close down the space behind the defenses that liverpool exploit but we'll see I guess. One thing for sure though is the league is only getting stronger, the top 7/8 teams are all very good and could shuffle around alot next year.
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Post by Red Alert Sun May 04, 2014 4:05 am

Our netspend compared to City since Rodgers has been manager.
 
Note: We finished 8th. City had just won the league.
Note 2: Majority of our targets rejected us due to not being in the CL/Europe so we missed out on players too, that won't happen this time around.
 
Is this a high-tide moment for Liverpool? Bmu2gg10
 
So yeah, City and Chelsea etc WILL spend and strengthen, but we will too. Rodgers has stated he's going to try and bring 5-6 players in this summer. It'll be tough for ALL teams again next season, it won't just be Liverpool that will "struggle". It's a new era in the PL. The only thing I do fear is that we'll have it tough in Europe, but we'll be fine in the PL.
 
_
 
@Sepi: Stop over exaggerating please. Silva is not a bench player ffs, he's easily first team at City but he's just came back from injury... but yeah, agree with the rest.
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Post by Art Morte Sun May 04, 2014 9:44 am

I think we will be able to mostly maintain our performance level from this season. The key will be getting a few transfers right, unlike last summer when we "strengthened" by bringing in Aspas, Alberto, Ilori and Moses. Sakho and Mignolet were good deals, but both for positions where you don't need that much rotation / substitutes.

Furthermore, the players we bring in need to have not only enough quality, but the right kind of quality. So it won't end up being a case of a square peg into a round hole. The players we buy have to fit our system(s). For example, when Henderson has been replaced by the too immobile Lucas, it hasn't been a good fit at all.


Anyway, when all our players are fit and available, I fancy our chances against anyone. The other big clubs in the Prem will surely strengthen in the summer as well, but I think it's quite obvious to us how we can improve our team (full-back, CM or AM, winger), making it, theoretically, easier to buy. Like, compared to Man City, it's not, to me anyway, at all obvious which areas need strengthening the most and not at all certain that buying a new player is going to be an improvement to what they already have. The same applies to Chelsea apart from their striker department.

I'm definitely expecting us to finish in the top-4 again next season. Most of our players are in their 20's, either reaching their peak or at their peak right now. We should not be at a point where this team's cycle is taking a downward turn. Another title challenge, I don't know about that, but definitely expecting to be in the top-4 next season, too.
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Post by El Gunner Sun May 04, 2014 10:46 am

Mr Nick09 wrote:Well i think City have the most talented squad in the league. They will add players, so if they win it this year, i will still make them my favorite to win it all next year. Their attacking talent is just too great and too consistent compared to the other teams, and they did it with pelle being a noob epl coach, demi in defense and kun out for long periods of time.

And because Pool attacking potentially is almost equally great, i dont expect them to disappear at all. they are too young, play too fast and with too much movements to just fall off next season. Yes, they do need signings, but it's depth that they need the most. I do expect them to slow down a lot, or for teams to slow them down more effectively, but they will still be up there.

Chelsea, is a no brainer. Mou has the best record against top epl sides this year, what he is missing are genuine scrub killers. He has a team full of guys ready to sacrifice and to get result in big games, but if he puts his hands on a scoring machine and maybe another winger that can bring goals vs scrubs more regularly, he will be champions, no doubt about it.

Arsenal...well, Ramsey, Walcott, Ozil and a proper CF, if fit, can change everything. they get points vs scrubs no problem, but they dont do it enough vs big teams. Mentally i dont know if they can endure the title chase all year long, but we will see.

That's my top 4, predicting the champion is an exercise for another time.

As for United, to me it seems like they have lost too much mental edge to just get it all back next year as if nothing happened. Van Gaal is a great manager, can turn things around, but the fear factor teams use to have for united disappeared this year. Teams like Sunderland or Crystal Palace will attack them as if they are on par. Next year will be a grind for them. might be wrong, but that's what i see right now.
+1

While I think United might make a better run at the top 4 next season, I still think they'll miss out on it as they are in a rebuilding phase atm. This summer transfer window is almost just as crucial for United as it is for Liverpool.

We need a few signing in a few specific position and then do something about that weak mentality that we have when we play against the other top teams and of course a lil bit of luck in injury department, if all of that can fall into place then we can mount a strong challenge for the title next season imo.
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Post by Vibe Sun May 04, 2014 11:16 am

When I came home drunk last night first thing I did was read this thread.

Was too battered to reply,and today I don't feel like it...Although this is a reply imo hmm
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Post by Art Morte Sun May 04, 2014 11:30 am

/thread
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Post by Swanhends Sun May 04, 2014 2:32 pm

Art Morte wrote:I think we will be able to mostly maintain our performance level from this season.

I guess that's sort of what I was getting at, I also expect Liverpool to be able to maintain the current performance level - but will that be enough to have them in title contention next year?
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Post by Nishankly Sun May 04, 2014 2:38 pm

Yes it will we can't do worse than Aspas, Alberto and Moses with CL in our hands.

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Post by Glory Sun May 04, 2014 2:53 pm

City and Chelsea will go into next season once again as the bookmaker's favourite. And among those 2 I think chelsea could possibly edge out the former. City's ageing midfield is a problem and I dont think they have a replacement for Yaya yet. Obviously they will spend big and swoop another mercenary. But till that happens, chelsea holds the advantage IMO provided the blues too straighten their issues out of course.

As for Liverpool and Arsenal they will be battling it out for the 3rd position again. Liverpool could have easily mounted a title challenge again if they didnt have UCL 'distraction' , However they are clearly on the upward curve and as above posters correctly pointed out their players have not even reached the peak. If BR like he mentioned could add 6-7 players and improve squad depth. Its gonna be yet another honeymoon for them I believe.  

Arsenal unless they decide to finally part ways with Wenger and bring in an ambitious young coach, (no offence to Arsenal fans here) . I simply cant see them in the top 2 spots even next year. Similar to Chelsea they too will be on the lookout for a striker and if they can address that issue, its gonna bode well for them. But still maximum a 3rd place finish, I might be massively wrong there  as well, I admit.

United well it will be all about rebuilding, stabilising after the mishaps and misfortune that had befallen upon us during this forgettable season. LvG if he arrives, even if it means short term as of now, is going to be a huge plus and can prove to be the catalyst and can lay the foundation for many years to come. No ucl or in that regard no European competition meaning the club will find it hard to attract good players, but the assuring factor there is that the club is willing to spend big on player wages. Its going to be yet another mercenary scenario where players with no love for the club will be arriving purely for the monetary benefits of being here. But I am afraid there is no other alternative to that at least as of now.
So yea United will push hard for breaking into that top 4 and we lot are somewhat optimistic I guess in that. Having said that as for us it will be about laying a solid foundation the next season. A UCL qualification if achieved is of course going to be a bonus. So I predict a 5th place finish.

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Post by donttreadonred Sun May 04, 2014 3:17 pm

I have considered this many times this season as it became more and more apparent that we were going to at least challenge for the title.

Obviously, I have a vested interest in the matter. Therefore, take my opinion with a grain of salt. Like Art, I think we should be able to at least match our performance level from this season.  Now, at multiple points in the season, I’ve thought this is by far our best opportunity to win the league, simply due to a “perfect storm” of circumstances: Spurs and United imploding early in the season, City settling in under a new manager, Mourinho restructuring the Chelsea squad, and Arsenal still being the Wenger Arsenal and collapsing late in the season. Precisely because of these circumstances, I will be utterly gutted if we are to relinquish the title at this late stage. We won’t get that combination again, at least not soon. You could see them coming, as well. Prior to the season, I felt that this was a golden opportunity for the few clubs positioned to take advantage of it. Unfortunately, as I predicted in pre-season, it may have come 1 or 2 seasons too early for Liverpool.

Despite my potentially crushing disappointment with the last 3 weeks of the season, Liverpool have a plan to continue improving, and they have been working towards these goals ever since Rodgers came in. Moreover, they are conceptually internally-oriented goals, meaning they aren’t totally dependent on other clubs. Obviously, in sport, all macro-goals are somewhat dependent on placing, beating opposition, etc. However, we are focused on playing in a certain style, shoring up our own weaknesses, building our internal development system, and improving the squad. If we succeed against those specific metrics, results are bound to follow. And follow, they have…

Of course, our results this season are somewhat due to a more open Premier League. (I don’t completely buy into the idea that this is a weaker Premier League. Parity is not the same as a lack of quality.) However, that should not detract from the achievements. A 16-week unbeaten run should attest to the quality of our squad and the overall approach/tactics. The impressive thing about this season is that it has been achieved after relatively little outlay. The majority of the improvement came not from new signings and big names, but from tactical restructuring and improved performances. This type of grass-roots improvement is unlikely to dissolve after one season of success. Moreover, a fair portion of the outlay in the last two seasons has been on players that were unlikely to really contribute in their first season: Borini, Ilori, and Alberto are all examples. In addition to the external additions, the youth system has provided some very high-potential prospects that are just now approaching he first-team: Sterling (of course), Jon Flanagan, Jordon Ibe, Andre Wisdom, Brad Smith, etc.

Of course, with more competitions the squd will need to expand and expand with true quality. That is why this summer is so vital for us. We need to add true quality, and not merely the squad/rotational players we have the last few summer windows. However, thanks to the results of this season, we now have the league-standing and competitive draw to match our history, style, star players, and managerial-nous. We won’t compete financially (notice that is a strategic use of ‘will not’ rather than ‘cannot’) with the likes of City, Chelsea, PSG, etc. when it comes to transfer prices and wages. But, we can now offer the same competitions and the same competitiveness, with a more attractive brand of football, one of the best players in the world, and a young and vibrant man-manager. I don’t see how that wouldn’t be an attractive prospect for any young stars, looking to be a part of something special.

Just like the rest of you, I can see that this season was a bit of an outlier, and I’m not arguing that Liverpool have benefitted from it. What I’m saying is that it would seem the foundation has been laid for continued success, rather than this season being a mere flash in the pan. Yes, the expectations are now higher. But, we also have the means and placement to make the necessary additions and rise to the challenge. There’s certainly work to be done and a lot of football to be played before we can say for certain. However, despite an outrageously successful season, Liverpool remain merely ahead of schedule in the plan to achieve their own goals. Rodgers said earlier this season that we were ahead of schedule at (what appeared likely at the time and has now been confirmed) getting back to the top-four. To challenge for the title is the stuff of dreams.

Barring a strange twist in the next week, the psychological effects of upward comparison will tamper the excitement that should surround this summer. Looking up at the Premier League winners and thinking of what could have been will be cruel punishment for a club and fanbase that are so promisingly poised, so much sooner than anyone expected. However, it is likely to be precisely our fate.  What Liverpool fans need to remember is how far we have come, and how far we have yet to go. The structure is there for continued success. The club merely need to continue down the similar path. If this isn’t our year, then there’s only one thing we can do: make the necessary moves over the summer and PREPARE TO GO AGAIN.
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Post by Mr Nick09 Mon May 05, 2014 10:02 pm

hmm, aw, hey, remember when rodgers said he wanted to sign 6 players. i hope that includes a RB, two centerbacks, and someone that can actually protect the defense because gerrard sucks at it.
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Post by Swanhends Tue May 06, 2014 1:30 am

Slightly related: How many years do we think Gerrard has left in his window?

Is he willing to accept a bench role if Liverpool can find a superior player to fill the role if it means he gets a title? Thats a difficult trade-off for any proud man
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Post by futbol Tue May 06, 2014 1:36 am

Moysie is gone. Liverpool will never win a game again. Sad

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Post by Robespierre Tue May 06, 2014 1:46 am

Fußball wrote:Moysie is gone. Liverpool will never win a game again. Sad

Laughing

finally it's all clear why United sacked Moyes when just 4 matches missed and United hadn't to fight for something..
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Post by McAgger Tue May 06, 2014 1:54 am

Swanhends wrote:Slightly related: How many years do we think Gerrard has left in his window?

Is he willing to accept a bench role if Liverpool can find a superior player to fill the role if it means he gets a title? Thats a difficult trade-off for any proud man

No one will be replacing Gerrard in our starting XI until he retires. It's not even an option.
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Post by stevieg8 Tue May 06, 2014 4:25 am

Potentially, but this and any other predictions for Liverpool's next season are 100% useless until we see what happens in the summer.

If you want to assume the rivals will strengthen, then we have to assume Liverpool will strengthen too. How much/where/what players is of course an enigma for all of the teams involved; we've seen teams (cough cough Tottenham) drop massive sums of money in a summer and not get better, so the greater spending power some other clubs may have isn't a good indicator. Basing predictions for next year off of imagined hypothetical strengthening is useless.
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Post by urbaNRoots Tue May 06, 2014 6:47 am

I agree with stevieg8.

Let's see how Liverpool manage the transfer window (not that it's the most important thing) now that they are in the CL. A new set of players will be available now, which Liverpool couldn't sign before... will Rodgers want to sign one or two big signings or will he continue trying to find these bargains? I don't know about that yet. But he'll have less restrictions in recruiting new players which can only be a good thing.
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Post by donttreadonred Sat May 10, 2014 2:36 pm

McAgger wrote:
Swanhends wrote:Slightly related: How many years do we think Gerrard has left in his window?

Is he willing to accept a bench role if Liverpool can find a superior player to fill the role if it means he gets a title? Thats a difficult trade-off for any proud man

No one will be replacing Gerrard in our starting XI until he retires. It's not even an option.
I actually disagree. I think he will have a less critical role next season. If only because of the sheer number of fixtures, Rodgers will be forced to rotate the squad more. It's important that we bring in (or internally identify) someone that is capable of stepping into the role that Gerrard currently inhabits. He's absolutely irreplaceable in some aspects (passing, leadership, etc.), but he's lacking in others (pace, physicality, defensive positioning...).

Don't misunderstand. We're not going to go out and buy a replacement... but we might go out and buy a positional successor. The rumored interest in Kovacic and Emre Cann only reinforce this theory. Both could fit that deep-controller role well, assuming there are too willing runners (harassers) in front of them. Of course, Lucas is capable of filling in this role, and I believe we saw an early version of this system last season when Joe Allen was forced into the deeper role. However, neither is an ideal fit. Allen is better as a shuttler/harasser and Lucas doesn't have the dynamic passing range. But I digress...

The point is that Rodgers will need to find someone to step in for Gerrard next season, or else we are destined to succumb to the demands of a much longer and more intense season.
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Post by stevieg8 Sat May 10, 2014 5:14 pm

urbaNRoots wrote:I agree with stevieg8.

Let's see how Liverpool manage the transfer window (not that it's the most important thing) now that they are in the CL. A new set of players will be available now, which Liverpool couldn't sign before... will Rodgers want to sign one or two big signings or will he continue trying to find these bargains? I don't know about that yet. But he'll have less restrictions in recruiting new players which can only be a good thing.

Precisely. Everything's smoke and mirrors at the moment. We've shown we have a good core of players and a good manager, and there aren't really any big names looking to leave at the moment, unlike last time we were in a title race (although that, like everything else, is subject to change). A few months from now we'll have a better picture, but even then... I mean, come on, how many people on this forum looked at our summer of transfers last year and said "Liverpool will be competing for the title next year"?

I can answer that: one. It was McAgger. 90% of the forum thought we'd struggle to finish 5th. Just goes to show you that trying to predict things is a crapshoot, even when we have all the information. When we have none of the relevant info? *bleep*, best of luck to you.
stevieg8
stevieg8
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