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  1.  

     
    dave_usher.jpg
     
    Report by
    Dave Usher

     

    Oooof! Didn’t see that coming. Fucking hell. It’s ok for the likes of me to think we’d go to Fulham and just roll over them, but it’s not good when the players go there with the same attitude. Other than a couple of good spells in which we scored, this was appalling.

     

    Complacency is not something we can often accuse these lads of and I’m usually reluctant to do that. I probably wouldn’t be doing it now if Klopp himself hadn’t come out afterwards and said we started the game with the wrong attitude. Usually they get the benefit of the doubt on that and the rare poor performances can be attributed to just a bad day at the office. This wasn’t that though, we didn’t look ready for the game and seemed flustered by the intensity of Fulham. 

     

    In the first half we were outworked, outfought and for once didn’t seem to relish the hectic nature of the game. Usually we thrive when the game is fast paced and an opponent tries to go toe to toe with us. Fulham pushed up high and tried to play the game in our half. That’s normally suicide but in the first half it worked because we didn't match them.

     

    The thing is though, there was nothing Fulham did that we haven’t faced before, and faced from much better opponents. Let’s not dress it up as something it isn't. Fulham are still shit. Just because we made them look good in this game doesn’t suddenly make them anything other than strong relegation candidates. 

     

    Credit to them for how well they played but this result was almost entirely down to us being shit. And as shit as we were we still had enough chances to still win the game. Had it not been for Klopp’s comments I’d probably have put this down to us being undercooked because of the shortened pre-season, but then if that was the case how could we look so sharp last week against City?

     

    The first 15 minutes of this game were genuinely awful. We kept getting caught in possession and couldn’t get out of our own half. You just never see that, even against good teams. To see it against a newly promoted team was mad and unsettling.

     

    We were lucky to come through that spell unscathed and then we started to play a little bit. Not much, but on the odd occasion when we did put a few passes together we’d end up in their box in promising situations. It wasn’t enough though and it wasn’t a shock when we fell behind. 

     

     

    This is just a teaser, click here to view the full article

     

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  2. It was a surprisingly lacklustre display from the Reds at Craven Cottage as they had to twice come from behind to salvage a point against a lively Fulham side.

     

    TLW Editor Dave Usher was joined by Stu Montagu and Paul Natton shortly after the final whistle to go through all the main talking points from the game. How can we play that badly? What was wrong with the midfield? Did Trent have someone else's boots on? Is Bobby done as a regular starter? What the hell was Virg doing for the penalty? All that and much more is covered in a lively post match chat.

     

     

    • Upvote 7

  3. theweekthatwas.jpg

     

    Monday Aug 1:

     

    The England women won the Euros yesterday so good for them. I didn’t watch any of the tournament before this and wasn’t going to watch any of the final either, for no other reason than I don’t give much a fuck about it. Not because it’s women, but because I’m just not interested. I’ve got nothing derogatory to say about women’s footy at all, any time I've watched it I've thought the standard was good, it's just that I don’t really care about it. It’s the same reason I wouldn’t watch the Scottish Cup final or a Serie A game. Nothing against it, I’d just rather spend my time doing something else.

     

    But Adrianna decided to put it on (she hadn't watched any of it prior to the final either) and because I was in the room I got to see a decent chunk of the game. I didn’t cheer when they scored but I was pleased for them and posted in the group chat about what a boss finish it was and that “Nunez should have done that with his chance yesterday”.

     

    When Germany equalised I felt something approaching disappointment. Had that been the men I’d have been laughing my head off. Clearly my disdain for England does not extend to the women’s team or the fans of it. I had to go out so didn’t see extra time but I’m glad they won. 

     

    You know what’s funny though? All of a sudden you’ve got people trying to make out this is the same as the men winning something. Not because they see women’s footy as equal to the men’s game, but because they’re so desperate to hitch themselves to any trophy laden English wagon. “The 56 year wait is over!!” I kept hearing on Talksport and on the news last night. Is it fuck! Don’t be piggy backing on the success of the women just because the men are shit. 

     

    Let them enjoy their own success without patronisingly trying to put them on equal footing with the men’s game and making out this is like 1966. It isn’t and trying to suggest otherwise just demeans what they achieved and makes those who talk it down rebel against it even more. Just celebrate it for what it is. The English women are European Champions, it's has nothing to do with the men's game though. Hopefully it gives their league a boost because the attendances are pretty shite. 

     

    Meanwhile, we had a friendly yesterday. It was essentially a reserve game even though it was played at Anfield in front of fans. We lost 3-0 to Strasbourg so I’m not bothering with any catch up of it either. I did see some complaining on twitter about the team and some were even saying the game was sold to fans on ‘false pretences’. 

     

    Fuck off. If you bought a ticket for this thinking that Salah and Van Dijk and Nunez etc would be playing then more fool you. It’s the day after the Community Shield. The only players who were going to feature in this were the ones who missed out against City. In other words, the squad players and kids.

     

    What made the line up weaker was the number of injuries we have. Jones and Keita pulled out of this one, while Jota, Alisson and Kostas are all out too. Calvin Ramsay hasn’t kicked a ball for us yet as he’s injured too, so the team was as strong as Klopp could have picked. I doubt anyone who actually paid to go had any problem as they knew the situation. It’s the fucking internet cry babies complaining on their behalf. Always have to have something to moan about.

     

    As for today’s news, there were some quite revealing quote from Nunez about how hard he found it when he first got here. Basically to paraphrase, he was shit in his early training sessions and couldn’t do anything right because he was trying too hard to impress and justify his fee. He said the lads helped him and a chat with Mo was the main turning point.

     

    I found this interesting because I was only thinking yesterday that whenever any of the lads have spoken about him it’s been carefully worded and not particularly effusive. They haven’t been saying how incredible he is, it’s all been about how he needs to work hard, learn how we play and that his quality will shine through. It kind of makes sense now if he was shite in his first week or two. I bet he’s fucking flying now though.

     

     

    This is just a teaser, click here to view the full article

     

    Please note that 'the Week that Was' is only available to website subscribers. Subscriptions cost just £3 a month (you need to register first) and can be purchased here. 


  4. Another new season is upon us so that means predictions. Can we go one better than last season or will we be pipped to the post by City yet again? What about the rest of the top four, and will Everton finally stop circling the drain and be sucked down?

     

    Chris Smith is joined by Julian Richards, Ian Brown and TLW Editor Dave Usher to look ahead to the upcoming season, while we also get predictions from the rest of the team before we preview the opening day trip to Fulham.

     

     

     

    • Upvote 1

  5.  

     
    dave_usher.jpg
     
    Report by
    Dave Usher

     

    First let me say that this result means nothing when it comes to the season ahead. Not a thing. It’s completely irrelevant. The last two winners of the Community Shield were Leicester and Arsenal, who both went on to finish eighth. Leicester just weren’t very good and Arsenal spent six months smelling themselves after beating us on pens. The point is, winning this is not any kind of barometer for what lies ahead.

     

    That said, it feels great doesn’t it? Beating them is always good, whether there’s points at stake or not. Maybe it laid down a marker but I don’t necessarily think so. City know how good we are and this won’t have told them anything new. Except maybe that the King is dead and long live the King. Sadio was great against City so they’ll have been glad to see the back of him. Nunez showed them that life isn’t going to get any easier.

     

    Again though, this doesn’t mean that Nunez is going to be a roaring success or Haaland will be a flop. It’s just first blood to us, that’s all. It feels great though, and while the trophy itself isn’t particularly important, it’s something that Klopp and the lads hadn’t won so it kind of does feel important just for them to complete the set. 

     

    More than anything though it’s just good seeing a performance like that. It wasn’t flawless and we had lulls during the game, but that happens every time we play them. You can’t boss City for 90 minutes as they’re too good. In total we probably bossed two thirds of this game and the other third was relatively even. It never felt like City were on top at any point.

     

    We started the game brilliantly and ended it the same way. That bodes well for the start of the season as it shows we’re pretty sharp despite the shortened pre-season. The starting eleven looked really good and then the subs gave us that extra push in the closing stages. It couldn’t have gone any better could it?

     

    The start of the game reminded me a little of the semi final a few months back. This wasn’t as spectacular but we’re still in pre-season so we’re never going to be at the intensity we were playing at in April. The way the game went though was similar. We started fast and were well on top. We dominated the ball and were moving it around well. 

     

    In the first few minutes Mo hit one into the side netting after dancing his way into the box. I really thought that had gone in at first. Would have been a sensational goal.

     

    Robbo missed a good chance too when he arrived at the back stick to meet a Trent cross but headed horribly wide. Bad decision, he should have headed back across goal, either to try and score himself or to square it to a team-mate. Robbo might be the worst finisher I’ve ever seen, which is mad because he’s such a great player. He does the difficult stuff really well but when it comes to goalscoring he couldn’t hit a cow’s arse with a banjo.

     

     

     

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    • Upvote 2

  6. theweekthatwas.jpg

     

    Monday Jul 25:

     

    Didn’t do one of these last week because there wasn’t anything happening. Then as the week drew to a close loads went down. David Moores died. I don’t really have anything to say about that other than to offer condolences to his family. His house is about 2 minutes from mine but I’ve never seen him out and about which I always thought was weird. Maybe he’s been in poor health for a while. RIP anyway.

     

    Also last week, we had a 5-0 friendly win in Leipzig in which Nunez scored four. I do have things to say about that. Only one of the goals actually impressed me. Three of them were very much in the “Darren Bent finishes” category. The keeper should have saved two of them (one from the spot) and Darwin almost missed the easiest of the chances and it went in off the post. His second goal was a lovely finish though. My point here isn’t to downplay what he did though. It’s more a case of showing the folly of this judging players on pre-season stuff. 

     

    He was being ripped by rival fans for not scoring in a couple of short appearances. That was ridiculous. Now he scored four in a half there’s a temptation to go overboard and read way too much into that. Don’t do it. It means fuck all. Let’s wait and see how he does when the real stuff starts and then we can judge. These games mean nothing.

     

    That said, I’ve seen enough of Carvalho to know he’s going to be a fucking superstar and I’m also really struggling to hold off on declaring Stefan Bajcetic the next big thing. He looks really good so far for 17. I don’t think he’s even played in the 21s yet. Looks to be some prospect though. 

     

    Staying with the pre-season theme and how results mean nothing, look at Everton. Last week their fans were laughing at us for losing 4-0 to Manchester United. A few days ago they lost 4-0 to… Minnesota United. You just can't write this shit. That might just be the most Everton thing ever. 

     

    It was their strongest line up too. Pre-season results mean fuck all but there’s still something about this one that sets off alarm bells. 4-0 to an MLS team isn’t good. They’re fucked aren’t they? The only thing that can save them this season is if the newly promoted clubs really stink. If one or two of them are decent, then it’s bye bye Everton.

     

     

    This is just a teaser, click here to view the full article

     

    Please note that 'the Week that Was' is only available to website subscribers. Subscriptions cost just £3 a month (you need to register first) and can be purchased here. 


  7. Who is Liverpool's best ever signing? Is it the King, or perhaps the Egyptian King? Van Dijk or Hyypia? Maybe it's Barnes or Rush?

     

    From the players who changed the direction of the club to those who were just incredible value for money, we run the rule over all of them and attempt to come up with a top three. In the interest of balance we also voted on the worst signing.

     

    That was a much easier choice. Spoiler; he's the only number nine to play an entire season without scoring a league goal.

     

     

    • Upvote 1

  8. theweekthatwas.jpg

     

    Monday Jul 11:

     

    Some takeaways from the latest training videos from Thailand. Firstly, the South American lads look like they’re trying to recruit Carvalho. Harvey, Curtis and the other young guns have a fight on their hands there. Seconds, ice baths. Just fucking nightmare fuel that for me. I’ve said this before but I couldn’t be a professional footballer if it meant getting in ice baths every day. The idea of it fucking terrifies me. 

     

    I can’t even get a cold shower. Back when I used to go the gym I’d spend a lot of time in the sauna and steamroom (more than I did in the actual gym) and outside them were showers. Some were cold, some were warm. I’m the only person I ever saw using the warm one. There was a plunge pool too that everyone used to go in after they came out of the sauna. One time I plucked up the nerve to give it a try. If everyone else Is doing it then it can’t be that bad, right? Wrong. It took every bit of self restraint I had not to scream.

     

    And now I see the lads casually just sitting in ice baths, throwing ice at eachother and not being the slightest bit bothered by it. They don’t even grimace when they get in. This must be a me problem, right? Maybe I have super sensitive skin or something, because I can’t even get into the sea on holiday without edging my way in, inch by inch, standing on my tip toes because I don’t want the cold water hitting my stomach and chest. Reluctantly, I have to admit it - I’m fucking pathetic.

     

    The final take away I had from watching the stuff on LFCTV though is that I’ve got a strong feeling Harvey is going to completely rip it up this season. I know you can’t judge anything based on these training videos, but even so, he looks dynamite. There was an interview with him too where he was asked about whether he enjoyed his time off and if he was able to relax. He basically said that no he didn’t, he was just itching to get back. Eye of the tiger baby. Eye of the tiger.

     

    One other thing, Harvey was also asked about his mate Fabio and he said “what a player by the way. A true superstar”. This is interesting to me because although Harvey is a kid, he’s quite mature in his interviews and wouldn’t throw that comment around lightly. It’s also interesting to read the quotes from Klopp today about why he doesn’t need a midfielder and he doesn’t understand the obsession fans have about it.

     

    For the record, I do want a midfielder but I also agreed with everything Jurgen said about it. I want one to replace Keita, I don’t want one in addition to what we have because we don’t want to restrict the opportunities for the young talent we have. Klopp referenced Curtis, Harvey and Fabio as creative midfield options and also said they’d be used as a number 10 if we played with just two midfielders. 

     

    The reason he was talking about this was because he was asked about Bellingham. His answer made it obvious that he wants him because he didn’t say “I don’t need a midfielder” he said “he is not on the market this summer”. 

     

    Final point, Billy Hogan did another interview on the site too. Not about Paris this time, just about general stuff to do with the tour, the stadium expansion and stuff like that. As a rule I absolute loathe rich, corporate types, especially American ones. I get a completely different vibe about this fella though. You could go for a bevvy with him I reckon and not come away thinking “what a cunt”.

     

     

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    • Like 1

  9. In the summer of 2017 we decided on the four founding members of the TLW Hall of Fame and then added four more inductees as the ‘Class of 2017’. Another four went in a year later and so on. Every summer four more legends will be inducted. However, we need your help to do it.
      
    HOW IT WORKS 
     
    The voting panel consists of representatives from TLW, the media, the former players association and also a popular fan vote, which is where YOU come in, by voting below.
     
    Each year there will be a group of ten nominees, from which four will be voted in. The six who don’t get in will remain on the ballot for the following year and beyond, until they are eventually selected. Those voted in will be replaced by four new names for the following year. 
     
    In 2017 Ian Rush, John Barnes, Billy Liddell and Ian Callaghan were voted in to join the four founding members; Bill Shankly Bob Paisley, Kenny Dalglish and Steven Gerrard. 2018 saw Emlyn Hughes, Roger Hunt, Alan Hansen and Graeme Souness selected, while in 2019 five players made it in after Jamie Carragher, Phil Neal and Kevin Keegan were joined by Phil Thompson and Ian St John following a dead heat.
     
    There will be a separate category for managers & coaches (with one inductee every four years), but for now we’re just concentrating on the players. 

     

    There was no vote in 2020 or 2021 but rather than skip those years we're just going to resume from where we left off, so although it's 2022 you'll be voting on the "Class of 2020" and we'll do 2021 in a few months and then 2022 soon after so we're all back on track for 2023.

    The five remaining candidates who did not get in last time will now be joined by five new nominees this year. The new five are Ray Kennedy, Sami Hyypia, Ron Yeats, Chris Lawler and Ronnie Whelan.
     

    classof2020.jpg

     

    As explained in previous years, it was not just a case of picking the ten greatest players available, which in itself would also have been incredibly difficult. Other factors come into it, although only great players will be considered. For example, few would claim that Phil Neal was one of Liverpool’s ten most talented players of all time, but nobody can match his medal haul or achievements so therefore he's in 
     
    We also felt that it was important to have a mix of players from across several eras rather than just selecting the greats of the 70s and 80s. For example, none of us saw Elisha Scott play but excluding him on that basis wouldn't be right. His career record speaks for itself. Some have missed out so far as a result of the decision to spread it across all eras, but over the coming years they’ll all be added to the mix, usually when someone from their generation (or playing position) has just been voted in. For example, Jamie Carragher went in last time so will be replaced by Sami Hyypia in this year's list. Ray Clemence will go on the ballot when Scott is eventually voted in.
      
    We would really appreciate your support and participation, both in terms of voting and spreading the word by telling your friends and sharing on social media.
     
    So without further ado, here are this year's nominees...
     

     


     

    ROBBIE FOWLER

     

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    The most natural goalscorer to pull on the famous red shirt. Toxteth born Fowler burst onto the scene as an 18 year old and for the next few seasons took English football by storm, becoming the quickest Liverpool striker to reach 100 goals when he achieved the milestone in only his 165th game.

     

    A succession of injuries prevented him from sustaining that blistering form, but Robbie sits 36th in the all time appearances list and in two spells with the club he amassed 183 goals. Unquestionably one of the most loved players in club history.

     

     



    STEVE NICOL

     

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    Regarded by many fans as the club's best ever full back, Nicol enjoyed a stellar 13 year career at Anfield where he excelled in a variety of positions.

     

    He took over from the ageing Phil Neal at right back during the 1985/86 season and helped the Reds win the league and FA Cup double, but it was on the opposite flank where he enjoyed his best form, combining with John Barnes to wreak havoc during the 1987/88 season when he was named Player of the Year by the football writers.    

     

     



    TERRY McDERMOTT

     

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    The scorer of one of the most iconic goals in club history when he headed in at the Anfield Road end in a 7-0 win over Spurs in 1987. Terry Mac was a local lad who had to make his name elsewhere before getting his chance to shine with the Reds.

     

    He started at Bury and moved to Newcastle, where he was part of the side that lost to Liverpool in the 1974 FA Cup final. A few months later he was signed by Bob Paisley. He won five league titles, three European Cups and a host of other trophies, as well as being named PFA and Football Writers Player of the Year in 1979/80.
     

     


     

    ELISHA SCOTT

     

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    The Ulsterman joined Liverpool in 1912 and left in 1934, meaning he was between the sticks for an incredible 22 years.

     

    In that time he won two league titles but, more importantly, he captured the hearts of those on the Kop. Scott was idolised by the fans, so much so that when the club attempted to sell him (to Everton!) it was the reaction of the supporters that forced them into changing their mind. Legendary Everton striker Dixie Dean described him as the best keeper in the world, and a fan poll in 1939 saw him voted Liverpool's greatest ever player.        
     

     


     

    TOMMY SMITH

     

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    The Anfield Iron. The man who according to Shanks "was not born, he was quarried". Smith was the hardest man in an era of hard men but he was also a terrific footballer who excelled in a number of positions.

     

    He made his debut in 1963 and his final appearance came 15 years later. In that time he won everything there was to win, with his finest hour coming in Rome in 1977 when he found the net with a thumping header in the European Cup Final. Tommy played 638 times for the club and paid a heavy price for that in later life with numerous ailments including severe arthritis and dementia. He passed away in 2019, aged 74.     

     


     

    CHRIS LAWLER

     

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    The man for whom the expression "actions speak louder than words" could have been created for. The Silent Night. The Ghost.

     

    Chris Lawler sits in 42nd place in Liverpool's all time leading goalscorers list even though he was a right back. He didn't take penalties. He didn't take free-kicks. He just used to sneak into the box unnoticed and get on the end of things. A great defender with the ability to finish like a striker, Lawler amassed an incredible 61 goals for the Reds. He also sits 11th on the total appearances list and he is perhaps the most under-rated legend in Anfield history. 

     

     


    RAY KENNEDY

     

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    One of the most stylish, graceful footballers to ever pull on the famous Red shirt, Ray Kennedy was your favourite player's favourite player. Admired and respected by everybody, Kennedy joined the club on the day Bill Shankly retired.

     

    He'd made his name as a striker at Arsenal but his Liverpool career didn't really take off until Bob Paisley converted him into a left sided midfielder. The rest is history. Ray currently sits in 29th spot on the all time appearances list (having played 393 games) and 33rd on the leading goalscorers chart with 72 strikes. Kennedy was one of those players who could be described as being ahead of his time and could have thrived in any era. Sadly Ray's later years were plagued by Parkinson's disease and he passed away in 2021.

     

     


     

    RON YEATS

     

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    The Colossus. It was the arrival of Yeats and fellow Scot Ian St John that really kick started the Bill Shankly era at Anfield. Those two were the catalyst as the team won promotion to the top flight and wrote a new, glorious chapter in the history of the club.

     

    Yeats was not a man to be trifled with and prior to becoming a footballer he worked in a slaughterhouse. During a 10 year stint with the club he captained the side to three trophies and also made valuable contributions when his playing career ended when he was brought back to the club as a scout by Kenny Dalglish. Unquestionably one of the all time great LFC players. 

     

     


     

    SAMI HYYPIA

     

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    The giant Finn was a modern day Colossus so it's ironic that it was the original 'Colossus' who discovered him and urged Gerard Houllier to sign him as the solution to Liverpool's defensive weakness.

     

    Hyypia was an unknown when he arrived from Willem II in Holland but it was clear from day one that he was much better than anyone realised. Big Sami forged a formidable pairing with his partner in crime Stephane Henchoz, and would later form an equally effective duo with Jamie Carragher. He wasn't the quickest but he read the game like few others, he was dominant in the air and he could play. Sami also had a knack of scoring important goals and he enjoyed a stellar career at Anfield spanning a decade. 

     

     


     

    RONNIE WHELAN

     

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    Under-appreciated in his time but history has been kind to Ronnie Whelan. Bixarrely, he was often the whipping boy of the Kop during Liverpool's dominance throughout the 80s but the Irishman is well and truly regarded as one of the greats now.

     

    Coming into the side as a young right footer and being asked to follow in the huge footsteps of legendary figures such as Ray Kennedy and Steve Heighway can't have been easy, but Whelan put his own stamp on the position. He didn't play the way they did but he was hugely effective and had an uncanny knack of cutting inside and bending the ball into the top corner in the biggest of games. After the arrival of John Barnes, Whelan re-invented himself in central midfield and became a key member of what was (and in the eyes of some still is) the greatest side in the club's history. 

     


     

     

     

     

    • Upvote 1

  10. theweekthatwas.jpg

     

    Monday Jul 4:

     

    The lads are back in training and I’m just not ready for this yet. Last season was just constant stress as the stakes were so high and every single game felt like it had everything riding on it, usually because it kind of did. The knock out games were, well, knock out, and the league games were too. It was relentless and then it ended on a downer in that last seven days. So yeah, I’m not ready for it to be back so soon but it is what it is I guess and we just have to suck it up and go again.

     

    Lot of rumours yesterday that we’d made a move on Bellingham. As far as I can tell it was a hoax that fooled a lot of people but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a possibility that something is afoot. I speculated about it in last week’s diary when Mo extended. Not having to sign a replacement for Mo is a game changer financially. It frees up money for other deals and we really only need one more player. One more midfielder and we’re set. If that midfielder is someone who could be here for 15 years then all the better. 

     

    The £100m plus fee Bellingham will command is steep but if they are convinced he’s a fit for us then because of his age the fee isn’t that important. If we have the money (which we probably do after our success last season) then just pay what it takes to get him. Ordinarily Dortmund only sell one player each summer, but they got fuck all for Haaland really so maybe they’ll be tempted by the cash?

     

    Meanwhile, Ronaldo wants out at United. Surely that means City will be at the front of the queue then, after all, they wanted to sign him last summer didn’t they? And if you believe that you’ll believe anything. Hell of a job by Ronaldo, Mendes and probably even City themselves to concoct that whole thing to force United into making that deal happen. Now he’s had enough of how shit they are and wants out. I bet that new manager is made up though, as the last thing you want when trying to make your mark at a new club is someone like Ronaldo undermining your every move.

     

    You know where he’s meant to be going? Chelsea! I’m not having that. There’s no way Chelsea are that stupid. They’ve just had to offload one big money striker who didn’t fit the way they want to play, why would they bring in someone who is an even worse fit? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not bashing Ronaldo, he’s still fucking brilliant at what he does. But it’s the baggage isn’t it? He’s such a massive star but he’s not 27 anymore so you can’t build a team around him and let him have free rein to do what he likes. He’s old, doesn’t have much time left at the top and really should be tailoring his demands and expectations to that reality. Except he’s too arrogant to do that. So he’s a problem.

     

    You’d have to be thick as fuck to sign him now. Or you’d just do it for the attention and spotlight it would bring. So Newcastle then. They tick both of them boxes.

     

    Fair play to United though, they’ve managed to convince their local beat reporters to write - with a straight face - that United are annoyed with Ronaldo because he told them he was staying which was why they ‘let’ us sign Nunez. Yeah, THAT is why Nunez didn’t sign for them. Kinell.

     

     

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  11. Anfield’s best ever goal? A Suarez special? A Mo-ment of magic? Or a beauty from Barnes? The TLW lads all have their say on the best goals ever scored by Liverpool at Anfield.

     

    Between the sweeping team goals, memorable thunderbastards, and those goals that just meant more, we crown an overall top five strikes to grace the old stadium.

     

    Chris Smith is joined by TLW’s John Gallagher and Dave Usher as we also celebrate the news Mo Salah has signed a new three-year contract with the Reds.

     

     

     

    • Upvote 1

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    Monday Jun 27:

     

    Ok Spurs are defo trolling everyone now. Not only do they want to add Richarlison to Kane and Son, the fuckers are also trying to get Anthony Gordon as well! Fuck me, why not try and get Drogba out of retirement too. Or bid for Neymar. They’re trying to assemble an Olympic diving team here, they're going to completely detestable this season. 

     

    All joking aside though, that Gordon is fucking shit. He’s an attacking player who never fucking scores. Diving is his biggest skill and if he went to Spurs he’d never get a game because he’s a Championship level player. I don’t know why they would even have any interest in him at all. Mind you, I don’t know why they want the incredibly average Richarlison either. If his passport was Estonian and not Brazilian the cunt would be playing for someone like…. well, Everton.

     

    My point is that Spurs, Chelsea and Arsenal wouldn’t be looking twice at him. Although in fairness, I sincerely doubt that there is serious interest in him from Chelsea, or even Arsenal. But his agent is that Joorachian twat so he’ll be briefing the press with all sorts of duff info to drum up interest.

     

    Staying with Everton, some fucking mad comments from Andros Townsend today.

     

    “I love how Jurgen Klopp has found a way to get his own way. He’s been moaning for years. They have been pushing back and finally they have given him his five substitutions.”

     

    I mean, fucking hell. Every major in league in Europe has it. The Champions League has it. The FA Cup has it. The League Cup has it. In fact, every competition worth its salt had it except the Premier League. They finally fall into line with everyone else and somehow this is Klopp “getting his own way”. He didn’t invent the idea, he just wanted the Premier League to do what everyone else was doing because it makes sense.

     

    Honestly, Townsend always came across quite well in the past, but there’s just something about Everton that absolutely fucks with people and turns them into bitter, twisted, vile little fucking warped creatures. Everton are basically “the One Ring”. People go there as Smeagol but within a few months they’re full on raging mad Gollums. It happens all the time. Previously sane and normal people just become massive, frothing at the mouth cunts. Roberto Martinez was the nicest man in the world until he went there. Ancelotti too. The only one who was able to withstand its power was Koeman, who I guess is Frodo Baggins.

     

    Once Everton touches you….

     

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    Monday Jun 20:

     

    Calvin Ramsay signed yesterday. His interview was really good, he walked the line perfectly between supreme self belief and cockiness. He didn’t come across at all arrogant or cocky, yet you can tell he isn’t going to be overawed. We’ve got a good little group of kids now who will hopefully form the cornerstone of the future squad. Trent, Ibou, Curtis, Harvey, Carvalho and now Ramsay. If we add the Bellingham brothers to that then even better. 

     

    I’d like to see us sign another young striker though, Not for now, but someone boss to play in the u21s and maybe the cup games. Maybe Cannonnier will come through to be that player but it concerns me that despite all his goals for the 18s he wasn’t promoted to the 23s. I’ve watched him a fair bit and think he’s good, but he’s very much an Aguero type, penalty box goalscorer, and we don’t really play like that do we? We might see him, Carvalho and Gordon a fair bit in the 21s this year though, which would be enough to make me tune in to their games for the first time in a good few years. That level has been a waste of time in recent seasons. The 18s are always good to watch but the 23s has just not really had anything to get my attention and make me want to tune in.

     

    Meanwhile, Gini suffered the ignominy of being voted the biggest flop in Ligue 1. Let me state for the record I love Gini Wijnaldum and think he’s fucking boss. What I’m about to say is not an indictment of him, but rather just highlighting the Klopp factor. In the season before he joined us, he was relegated at Newcastle. In the season after he left, he’s been voted the biggest flop in the league and been dropped by the national team for which he was a fucking superstar while he was with us. In between he was fucking boss and played virtually every week in the best team in Europe, while tearing shit up for Holland.

     

    I’d like to say that others (Salah especially) should look at the fate of Gini (and Coutinho) and see them as warnings as to what happens when you leave the sanctity of Klopp and this team, but it doesn’t work that way because players always think they’ll be a success wherever they go. They see others struggle and think “that won’t happen to me, I’m too good”. They have to think that way I guess, as without that self belief they’d never have gotten as far as they have. 

     

    There was a twitter rumour today that we were looking at Gini on loan as a stop gap until we can get Bellingham next summer. I’m calling bullshit on that. You could make a case for why it would make a lot of sense, especially if we sell Ox, but I just don’t think Klopp thinks that way. Once you’re gone he moves on and doesn’t look back. I’m good either way, if we did bring him back on loan I’d be happy but if it was my call I probably wouldn’t do it. 

     

    Speaking of Ox though, the reports of late claim we aren’t going to sell him. I’m calling bullshit on that too. He never played, he could barely even make a nine man bench, he’s on a good wedge and he’ll be able to leave for free in 12 months. If we aren’t looking to sell him then someone needs to look for another job as that’s batshit crazy.

     

    And speaking of batshit crazy, African twitter everybody….

     

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    Monday Jun 13:

     

    Apparently Richarlison is off to Spurs, meaning the three biggest cunts in the entire league will all be playing in the same forward line. The Blues are basically selling him for the same amount they bought him for from Watford, which just highlights how fucking woeful they are at transfers. I also can’t help but laugh at the thought of them all singing for Spurs a few years back ahead of the Champions League Final, only to know lose their best player to them. And now “Richy lad” is posting pictures on Insta of him wearing a San Antonio Spurs jersey. Life sure comes at you fast when you’re an Evertonian.

     

    As for us, still no Nunez deal but it’s edging closer and he’s had a medical today so unless there’s a Fekir style incident he’ll be unveiled tomorrow probably. We are also close to signing the kid from Aberdeen, but the price has gone up now apparently (probably because Aberdeen have been reading twitter and think we’re the new Man City). He must be really good because we don’t really need him. Gomez is a capable back up for Trent and we also have Connor Bradley, who is the same age as this Scottish kid. So we wouldn’t be signing him unless he’s boss.

     

    Meanwhile, I don’t follow Curtis Woodhouse on twitter but for some reason loads of his stuff pops up on my timeline. The last day or so has been some top notch trolling of United fans, who are going fucking nuts about it. What's he said? Well it all started with a reply to a tweet asking “when you hear the term over-rated who do you think of”. Woodhouse said “Paul Scholes” and triggered United twitter in a big way. He could have left it at that, but the more United fans went after him, the more he started talking about Gerrard and how he was miles better than Scholes....

     

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    Every word he said was true and what makes it even better is he isn’t even a Liverpool fan. I’ve said this before but I’ll repeat myself because I like saying it. Paul Scholes was a very good player who nobody outside of United gave much of a fuck about, until out of absolutely nowhere Xavi said he was the best player he ever came up against, and suddenly people started talking him up to make themselves sound more knowledgeable. *strokes chin* “Oh Paul Scholes was definitely the best English midfielder of his generation, it’s just that not everyone is knowledgeable enough about the game to see the incredible things he did”.

     

    Yeah, no cunt saw it while he was actually playing. Funny that isn’t it? The myth of Scholes has grown year on year since he retired and it’s all because of people who know nothing trying to make themselves look like some kind of wise football sage. Paul Scholes was never, at any time in his career, one of the top three players at his own fucking club, let alone anything else. There, I feel better having got that off my chest.

     

     

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  15. Darwin Nunez is a Red as Jurgen landed his top target to start the summer off with a bang. An initial fee of £64m potentially rising to £85m could see the Uruguayan become the club's most expensive signing and his arrival understandably has the fans hugely excited.

     

    Chris Smith is joined by Julian Richards, Paul Natton and TLW Editor Dave Usher as the lads talk all things Darwin.

     

     

    • Like 1
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    Monday Jun 6:

     

    New deal for Milner. He’s taken a pay cut and agreed a one year deal. He says the parade influenced his decision to stay and you know that’s not bullshit either. There’s that clip on Hendo’s insta where Milner says to him “mate, what am I fucking seeing? Wow!”. Just a shame Sadio and Mo weren’t suitably moved. Milner is the last of a dying breed though. Well, maybe Hendo too. He’s like Milner-Lite.

     

    On the subject of our Egyptian King though, not great developments this past weekend regarding him. Apparently he played for Egypt despite being injured and having refused LFC’s request for him to have a scan. Now he’s missing their next game because of it. Lots of Reds are unhappy about it and I get that. I’m not particularly arsed because Mo’s international situation isn’t the same as, say, Virgil’s or Fabinho’s. He carries the weight of an entire nation and there’s huge pressure on him to play. 

     

    If the injury wasn’t that bad and he though he could play through it, whatever. He’s done it enough times for us over the years. This is only really an issue because of the contract. I agree it isn’t a good look and it appears that his relationship with the club is becoming strained, but I don’t think this is a big deal and I’ve got more important things to be mad at him for than this.

     

    Meanwhile, Trent is getting ‘slammed’ (© every click bait website in the land) for not singing the National Anthem. This is a bit unfair because when you watch the video his lips are moving a little. He’s not giving it the full chest out Captain Brexit Stuart Pearce routine, but there is movement of the lips. Granted, he’s probably booing or singing YNWA, but they can’t prove that so this criticism seems harsh.

     

    Funny thing is, someone on Twitter dug out an old clip from years ago of Gary Neville standing there, lips firmly closed, defiantly not singing. There have been loads of players down the years that haven’t sung, but flag shagging has become a national obsession in recent years (taken to whole new levels this past weekend with the jubilee and people waving at a fucking hologram of the queen). I hope Trent sticks to his guns and doesn’t sing next time too. 

     

    The highlight of the last few days though was an Everton fan site running a news piece on Sigurdsson being allowed to leave on a free and somehow managing to completely avoid the David Unsworth sized elephant in the room…. 

     

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    I mean that’s some serious North Korean style shit right there. Staying with the Blues though and that despicable piece of shit Richarlison got in a bit of a disagreement with Vinicius Jr in training with Brazil. This shocked me to be honest. The biggest Liverpool hater in football not seeing eye to eye with the lad who just scored the goal to beat us in a European Cup Final? What the hell could have brought that on? Maybe Vinicius Jr didn’t appreciate him trying to suck him off for an instagram post to impress the Blues.

     

     

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    Monday May 30:

     

    Fucking hell, the fallout from Paris is mental. Horror stories from fans, brilliant reporting by journalists on the scene and outrageous lies from those trying to cover up their failings. It’s genuinely incredible what the French government is trying to do here. At least make your story a little bit believable. Initially the authorities tried to say the fans arrived late. That was quickly proven to be nonsense. Now they’re saying it was 30-40,000 fans without tickets or with forgeries that was the problem.

     

    Just think about that for a second. The capacity is 80k. If you add 40k onto that you have 120k fans at the stadium. So if the stadium was full you’d have 40k outside. The stadium wasn’t even full, as loads of Reds have shown by taking photos of empty rows of seats when the game kicked off. There weren’t 40k outside though, so how do they expect these lies to stand up?

     

    Then there’s the logistics of the whole thing. 40k forged tickets? How would they know that? Where are those forgeries? Are they including all of the genuine tickets that failed to scan because their system was fucking shit? Robbo has already told us about his brother being told his ticket was fake even though it came from the club. Loads of fans have said similar too. There are also tales of fans having genuine tickets taken off them by stewards at the gate and then being turned away. 

     

    And while all of this was going on, local rats were climbing fences and running into the stadium unopposed. The security risk there is scary as fuck. Any one of them could have had a fucking bomb or some kind of weapon and none of them were searched. The ones who didn’t bunk in were outside robbing and slashing fans (not just ours either, Madrid fans suffered exactly the same treatment by police, stewards and local gangs, just on a smaller scale). 

     

    There were potentially deadly crushes on the way to the stadium as well as outside the gates, and the police made that even worse by throwing tear gas canisters that caused panic in an already dangerously crowded area. Then they were randomly pepper spraying people as they just stood there doing nothing. This time it isn’t just our word that it was happening. In this modern era everyone has access to video so it’s easy to get the message out. 

     

    It helped that basically every big hitter in the English sports media were there witnessing it, and some of them were right in the middle of it. Jason Burt from the Telegraph got pepper sprayed, while Henry Winter was there handing out water to fans who had been tear gassed. He’s a pompous, annoying arse but I’ve always been told by people who have had dealings with him that he’s a really nice, genuine guy and he showed that here. He was also fighting our corner on Talksport this morning too. This time the lies won’t stick.

     

    Not just over here either. The French media are fucking slaughtering their government for the lies. The Spanish press aren’t blaming our fans either. In fact, there’s been a lot of media coverage praising the behaviour of our crowd under the extreme provocation they were under. Our own media are 100% in our corner too. It’s a weird feeling really, we’re not used to this.

     

    I spent most of today reading about all this and watching horrific videos and it’s just so depressing. I needed a palate cleanser so watched the footage of the parade. What a day that was. It started off a bit subdued but by the end of it everyone was having the time of their life. Hendo even described it as one of the best days of his life. 

     

    You could see how much some of the others were loving it too. Konate was dragged over for an interview and he wanted no part of it because he wanted to be hanging over the side of the bus interacting with the crowds. He was buzzing off it. Diaz at the front of the bus was having a blast too. 

     

    Days like this will stay with these lads and spur them on in the future. It was mad that they had Calvin Harris DJ’ing too. Apparently that was Robbo’s doing. Imagine that conversation in the group chat. Hendo: “Ok, the gaffer says he’s bringing the ale, we need someone to sort a DJ.” Robbo “I’ve got a mate who says he doesn’t mind helping out”.

     

     

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  18. This one isn’t about football; it’s about setting the record straight. We’ve spoken to TLW contributors and members about their experiences at the Champions League final in Paris.

     

    The travelling reds were victims of the woefully inept organisation, subject to barbaric treatment from the French police, left vulnerable to gang attacks, and were immediately blamed by the authorities. Here’s what people on the ground saw and experienced.

     

     

     

    • Upvote 15

  19. So near and yet so far. Having seen hopes of the Quadruple dashed a week earlier, the Reds missed out on the Treble too after being rope-a-doped by Carlo Ancelotti's Real Madrid in Paris.

     

    The bigger story on the night of course was the disgraceful treatment of supporters before and after the game and we'll have a special pod dedicated to that this week, but for this one we're just covering the game itself. What went wrong and where do we need to improve to go one better next year?

     

    Chris Smith is joined by Paul Natton, Julian Richards and TLW Editor Dave Usher to sift through the debris of a frustrating loss and look ahead to what is likely to be a big summer of ins and outs.

     

     

    • Upvote 5

  20.  

     
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    Report by
    Dave Usher

     

    I said during the week that when we missed out on the title last weekend I was gutted far more for Klopp and the players than I was for myself and the rest of the fanbase. After this one, I feel the opposite. I’m gutted for us. Proper gutted and down in the dumps about it. We needed this after last week and it would have been fucking amazing to add number seven and parade it around town. 

     

    Last week the lads took care of business in their own game but they had no control over what happened elsewhere. They’d had an incredible season and did all they could in the run in but it wasn’t enough. That’s why I felt so bad for them. It wasn’t in their hands but they did all they could. There’s no regrets over the league, only resentment that we were beaten by cheats. 

     

    This was different. This trophy was in their hands. All they had to do was go out and beat a team who they are clearly superior to. Sadly they couldn’t do it and therefore it’s not really like last week. Our players can have no complaints after this because the bottom line is they just didn’t do enough to win. It’s not that they were outplayed, far from it. We dominated the game and Madrid offered virtually nothing in attack. But they scored and we didn’t.

     

    Even though we were clearly the better side overall, Madrid played exactly the way they wanted to and I don’t think we can say the same. It’s massively disappointing and it’s a missed opportunity because we haven’t lost to a great team. We should be beating them but it’s Real Madrid in this competition and for whatever reason (not going to get into the “aura of the competition again” but it is a thing) it’s much easier said than done.  

     

    Mind you, the whole night just had really bad fucking juju about it. There was the disgusting way the fans were treated which resulted in a delayed kick off, and all that drama with Thiago where it looked like he wasn’t going to play, then he was, then he wasn’t, then eventually he did. It just had a bad feeling before it even started.

     

    The most disheartening thing about the performance is that I never felt at any point in the second half that we would score. It wasn’t just me either, all the lads I was watching with had the same feeling. You could just tell we weren’t right in the final third and it was a tough watch. 

     

    Everything up until there was sound, but it was one of those games we have from time to time where the decision making in and around the box is just generally awful. We picked the worst possible time to have one those performances.

     

     

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  21. theweekthatwas.jpg

     

    Monday May 23:  

     

    The aftermath. I’m still pretty down today. Yesterday was hard to take and was made even worse for me when I got home from Anfield and threw the golf on the TV looking for a distraction, only to have salt poured into the open wound as Mito Pereira, a 110/1 outsider I’d bet on to win the US PGA Championship, went the full Aston Villa and blew a lead playing the 18th by hitting into the water. So yeah, a shitty day and today doesn’t feel any better. I’ll be fine by tomorrow I expect but right now I’m just full of resentment, anger and disgust.

     

    Towards Villa, City, the Premier League, fans of pretty much everyone other than Palace and of course to Mito fucking Pereira. I’m just catching up on some of the other stuff that happened yesterday and the first thing I want to do is talk about that Richarlison tweet. He’s done that to trigger us, to get under our skin, to rub our noses in the ‘disappointment’ of finishing with 92 points and second to a team that has blatantly cheated.

     

    It hasn’t worked though. I’m annoyed at the tweet but it’s not for the reasons he intended. What annoys me is his lack of self awareness. This cunt just seen his team lose 5-1 and they survived relegation by the skin of their teeth. Yet he thinks it’s acceptable to poke fun at Liverpool for not winning the fucking quadruple!! I mean, even by Everton standards that’s something else.

     

    This is the same cunt who posted a picture of himself with the number 7 on his back after Villa beat us 7-2, and then went crying to the Brazilian media about how Liverpool fans are always mocking Everton. He’s the fucking worst. Biggest cunt in football and I’m including the rapists and nonces in that. I don’t think I’ve ever wished serious injury on a footballer but I’d gladly make an exception for him. I don’t think ever seen him smile. I know he plays for Everton so there’s not much to smile about, but even allowing for that he seems like a miserable, ornery bastard. Even when he scores there’s no joy. He just looks angry all the time, the horrible little fucking scrote. 

     

    The irony is that he’s doing all this shit to play to the gallery, but if another club comes calling for him this summer you won’t see him for dust (and whatsmore, he’d jump at the chance to come here if we were ever stupid enough to give him the opportunity). Then he’d tell the fans he had no choice and that the club forced him out to pay off their debts. They’ll believe it too, because “Richy lad fuckin’ loves us yeno”. 

     

    Meanwhile, City had their parade today. If you can call it that. There were more people in the guard of honour for Divock yesterday than there were lining the streets of Manchester. My first reaction when I saw the footage was to laugh. The more I thought about it though, it stopped being funny and it just annoyed me. Even most of their own fans realise how hollow the success is, that’s why the parade’s are so shit. Any other team in the country that won a title would put this to shame. Fucking hell, Sunderland took 75,000 fans to London last week for the League Two playoffs. If they ever won a title, literally every non Newcastle fan in a 50 mile radius would be lining the streets.

     

    I resent them having days like this because they don’t fucking deserve them. It’s wasted on them and I’m not buying the excuse that it’s because it’s become normal now so they take it for granted. We wouldn’t. United didn’t. Besides, wasn’t their first parade an abject embarrassment too?

     

    I looked at De Bruyne on that coach today, staring down at the sparsely populated pavement and I just thought “knobhead”. Some might feel that it’s a shame and that he’s wasted there. That he deserves better. He doesn’t. He fucking chose to be there. No-one twisted his arm. He chose to extend his contract so fuck him. Fuck all of those players on that bus and especially fuck the manager. This is exactly what they deserve, the sportswashing pricks. 

     

    When De Bruyne hangs it up he’ll be viewed as Aguero is. A great player who really shouldn’t have spent the best years of his career at a club not really befitting his talents. He’ll have medals of course, but its hollow success that means fuck all. Whatever happens in Paris on Saturday our lads will have one of the greatest days of their lives when the parade hits Liverpool next week. 

     

    You think City players will be telling their grandkids about the 20 minute bus ride they had around the Etihad in front of fewer people than you get at an Everton pitch invasion? Our parade is over 8 miles and it will be packed the whole way around. Theirs was less than one mile and most of it looked like a deleted scene from “28 days later”.

     

    Look, I get it. It’s understandable they don’t have a million people showing up like we do. They just don’t have the fan base. It’s not that they’re a small club, clearly they aren’t and never have been. They have more fans than most clubs but they aren’t anywhere near as passionate as most. They might be the most apathetic fans in the entire league and it’s completely understandable too. How would you feel if we were owned by Qatar, Abu Dhabi or the Saudis? I wouldn’t be going to any trophy parades either.

     

    Nothing City win is worth anything. It’s hollow and meaningless and no-one gives a fuck. Even loads of their own fans can’t even be arsed showing up to celebrate it. So the next time when Guardiola is crysarsing about a lack of recognition for their ‘achievements’, maybe he should look a bit closer to home. If even their own fans are apathetic about it why should anyone else care?

     

    The laughable thing is City are claiming to have the most commercial revenue of any club in the world. Seriously, Everton would have double the amount of people at a parade if they ever win anything again. Granted, there’s more chance of Ed Sheehan making a decent song, but you get the point. In fact, City would have had a better turnout if they’d gone down County Road. I’m not even kidding.

     

     

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  22. The double winning Reds are looking to make it a treble as they bod for a seventh European Cup this weekend in Paris. Standing in the way are a familiar foe.

     

    The last time the sides met in Paris it ended with Alan Kennedy securing number three. Four years ago in Kyiv it was Real who emerged victorious. To discuss who will triumph this time, Chris Smith is joined by Julian Richards and TLW Editor Dave Usher.

    Allez les Rouges!

     

     

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  23. Given the situation we were in and the drama and emotion of it all, I didn’t even catch up on most of the other results until the day after. I wasn’t looking forward to Match of the Day because I knew I’d have to skip through our game and City’s game due to them doing that thing where they show both at the same time so you can see “how it unfolded” Fuck. That.

     

    Other than what happened with us, it was a decent enough final day in which most results went the way I’d want them to. In fact, if Aston Villa weren’t so…. well, Aston Villa… this would have been the absolutely perfect day. No top four for Arsenal, Leeds saved themselves (I’m glad, most of you probably aren’t!), Everton got battered, United lost yet again. The only slight blemish was West Ham didn’t win and push the Mancs down into the Europa Conference where they deserve to be. How have they finished above West Ham? That European run really torpedoed the Hammers' league campaign didn’t it?

     

    I’ll start at the bottom with Burnley and Leeds. I strongly fancied Burnley to stay up because they were at home to Newcastle while Leeds had to travel to Brentford. Newcastle had nothing to play for, whereas Brentford were looking for payback on Leeds because of a video that circulated after Leeds beat them in the playoffs a couple of years ago. 

     

    The Leeds players were singing about Thomas Frank and Brentford had been waiting for their chance at payback. My boy Ivan Toney tweeted it out a few weeks ago so you know Brentford were relishing the chance to put Leeds back in the Championship. So yeah, advantage Burnley I thought.

     

    Leeds had a kid making his debut in midfield and Gelhardt leading the line as my boy Bamford was still not ready to return. I didn’t like their chances of beating Brentford at all so fair play to them. It wouldn’t have mattered what Leeds did if Burnley had won though, but they shit the bed completely.

     

    The first goal they gave away was unbelievable. Nathan Collins just punched the ball off the head of a Newcastle player. Not one of those, hand above the head inadvertent handballs either. He deliberately did it. It was like watching a kids game when the ball comes within range of the hand and they can’t help but instinctively reach out and touch it. Wilson buried the pen and Burnley never really recovered.

     

    Burnley got relegated because Ben Mee got injured. It’s that simple I think. If he’d been available during the run in they’d have been fine. That Collins is terrible, I have no idea where they found him but they should send him back there. Unless it was the Championship, in which he’s headed back there anyway.

     

    As this was happening, Leeds thought they’d taken the lead with a smart finish by Gelhardt. He had just strayed offside though. They did eventually go ahead when Raphinha won and converted a pen.

     

    Things got worse for Burnley as Wilson added a second to make it 2-0 but Cornet pulled one back to give them hope and when Sergi Canos brilliantly headed Brentford level with 12 minutes to go it was game on. Especially as Canos was booked for taking his shirt off and then picked up another one minutes later for a foul. That’s why if I was a manager I’d fine any player who takes off their shirt unless it’s right at the end of the game. It's fucking stupid and serves no purpose.

     

    The situation was on a knife edge now and Weghorst was inches away from scoring the goal that - at that moment at least - would have saved Burnley. Cork had an effort cleared off the line too as the Clarets threw the kitchen sink at Newcastle.

     

    A goal then would have been enough, but then Harrison won it for Leeds with a deflected shot that found the bottom corner, sparking wild scenes of celebration in the away end. Bye bye Burnley then.

     

    You know what always shocks me? Hearing Ashley Barnes talk in his southern accent. He’s got Burnley stamped through him like a stick of rock and I always expect a Lancashire accent when he speaks. Then he’s all “yeah up the apples and pairs, guv’nor”. Freaks me out. 

     

     

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  24.  

     
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    Report by
    Dave Usher

     

    I often find writing match reports can be somewhat cathartic after setbacks. Usually those are when we’ve lost games though or put in a terrible performance. This is different. I don’t want to be writing this at all as I just feel really flat today. It’s a weird situation as I couldn’t be happier or more positive about our team and where we are at, but it’s really fucking galling that it isn’t enough to be winning titles because of things that are beyond our control.

     

    Three years ago we picked up 97 points and didn’t win it. This year it’s 92. It should be enough but it isn’t because of a fucking abomination sports washing project up the road. It’s galling and as cheated as I feel for myself as a fan, I feel even worse for Klopp and his players. They’ve put everything into this season and what they’ve done is truly incredible. To be able to still top the ninety point mark while going all the way in every other competition is unheard of. They deserve to be Champions but modern football is just so fucking corrupt it’s harder than ever to win anything if you’re playing by the rules. Cheats usually prosper, and without us fighting the good fight City would have five titles on the bounce and probably another FA Cup to add to their tainted collection.

     

    I’ll bounce back in a day or two, especially with a Champions League Final to look ahead to, but I’m just pretty gutted today and struggling to motivate myself to do anything really. I didn’t think I would be. In fact I said going into this game that I’d made my peace with missing out on the title and that this game was going to be a celebration of what the lads have given us already, as well as a rousing send off for next week. It didn’t really turn out like that though, mainly because I broke the golden rule I have lived my life by for decades - never rely on Aston Villa.

     

    In my defence, even when they led 1-0 I didn’t get my hopes up. I fully expected them to go on and lose the game. My only focus was on us. I badly wanted to win our game to at least make City have to win their game to beat us. I also wanted the win to keep up our incredible home record over recent years. Last year doesn’t count as there were no fans. Anfield with fans is a fortress and we’ve just completed a fourth successive unbeaten season at home (as I said, last year doesn’t count).

     

    So that was my focus, nothing else. But then Villa went 2-0 and everything changed. Now all of the stars seemed to be aligning. Coutinho even got the goal. So, more fool me, I started to believe. The Gerrard factor, Coutinho scoring, it was going to happen. Fucking hell. We just needed to find a goal ourselves as we were drawing 1-1 and facing the nightmare scenario of losing the title on goal difference. At least that didn’t happen, so that’s something I guess.

     

    Not that it makes me feel any less shitty. Today is a tough day and I’m sure most of you feel as low as I do. There are all sorts of emotions flying around and I’ve been trying to isolate them to see which is the most prevalent. One thing I know is that I’m not disappointed, I’m mostly just pissed off. Not with our lads mind. I couldn’t be prouder of what our team has done this season. Even if the title had found its way here I couldn’t be any more proud of them. So much so that I’m not even going to reference THAT game which I’ve been banging on about for months as the one that would cost us the title. I no longer see it that way. 

     

    Yes, we absolutely should never have dropped points that night, but look at all the games we’ve won since when you could argue we shouldn’t have. By that I don’t mean ‘shouldn’t’ as in didn’t deserve to. I mean shouldn’t have been able to because we were playing twice a week every week for months and on occasion had to make five, six, seven changes. We still kept on winning. 

     

    So no, I’m not going to pick holes in it with “if only we hadn’t done this or if only we’d been able to do that.” Fuck that. 92 points while going all the way in every single cup competition we played in is incredible. Unprecedented. I have no regrets from our perspective.

     

     

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