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Ron B

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  1. Aye, that was bonkers. Still, to spend 12 months at a club, win two trophies (albeit not the league, which is what they really wanted), and to deliver an enormous public Fuck You to their biggest rivals... well, that’s OK. There’s probably a pub quiz question somewhere in Barry Venison, Dean Saunders Mike Marsh, and Brad Friedel all playing for them at that time too. So Ah ain, for me Souness wasn’t a shocking manager. The only stinkers were Liverpool and Newcastle, whereas Rangers was an undoubted success. The rest was generally either decent or good.
  2. Succeeded at Rangers, with a mixture of money and sheer bloody-mindedness. Deserves credit too for ending the ban on signing Catholics. Failed at Anfield. My Southampton-supporting pals thought he was OK. They were three points and one place better off than they had been a year before, and his signings weren’t bad - the Ali Dia episode looms large of course. Blackburn went well. Not everyone does well at Blackburn. Newcastle went badly. Not many do well at St James. His foreign adventures? Mainly notable for signing Dean Saunders over and over again, and for signing a bizarre number of Brits at Benfica.
  3. He failed at Liverpool but on balance he didn’t have a bad managerial career overall.
  4. This, but also they’re a mess off the field generally. Their owners are parasites, just sucking cash out of the club. Ewar Woowar is clueless (at the football stuff anyway - if you want your club to be the first to have an official anal lube partner then he’s your man) yet has a massively important and powerful role. And their players? Plenty of good ones, but many more who are rank average yet overpaid/overhyped/underachieving. How many international central defenders can one club have on the books without having a convincing centre of defence? Fernandes aside, who was the last signing they made who was not just successful but good value for money? The squad is a mix of players signed by five different bosses now, and it shows. That said, I hope that Ole gets many more years to continue to excellent work that he’s doing.
  5. True ‘dat. I do miss the days when a promoted or previously underwhelming side could suddenly gel and have a proper crack at the title. I know we had Leicester a few years back, but even then that felt like a wild anomaly. By comparison, Villa in 92-93 felt like a side who had been put together at *just* the right moment for their various players - Dean Saunders with something to prove after we’d ejected him, Dalian Atkinson having the best season of his life, and players who seemed like they’d seen better days after winning the title elsewhere (Richardson, Mounfield, and maybe both Staunton and Houghton).
  6. https://www.theguardian.com/football/2020/jun/26/liverpool-will-struggle-to-repeat-fergusons-run-of-titles-claims-solskjaer-manchester-united Some profound stuff here from the Goblin One. “Any club would find it difficult to win 13 titles in 20 seasons.”
  7. Ron B

    Stealing a living X

    Is this turning into a ‘Shit signings’ XI? There’s a fair few I agree with - players who piss(ed) their talent down the toilet for the most part - but some of them are just crap signings whose moves didn’t work out. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t want Benteke and I was glad when we got rid, but his time at Anfield wasn’t the same as Joe Cole who by his own admission just didn’t want to be here from Day One. On that basis, surely Michael Owen at Newcastle (“How dare you boo me! I’ve worked so hard... to get fit for the World Cup.”) stole a living far more than Benteke did from us.
  8. Have you ever been out on a date with a girl (or guy. Sexist) who is clearly out of your league. But they’ve just broken up with someone excellent, and suddenly you have the chance to go on a date with them. So, not unreasonably, you do. But when you arrive at the date you’re late. Not your fault. Or maybe it is your fault. Ah, fuck it, you’re late, so telling them that it’s not your fault is just waffle and makes a bad start worse. No, hang on, you’re doing so anyway. Shut up you idiot. And then you realise that you’re completely underdressed for where you’ve met her. And it just goes downhill from there... There isn’t a second date. No, me neither. That’s never happened to me. Definitely. But it happened to Hodgson, when he became manager of LFC. So now he’s being asked about that ex-girlfriend, who he dated some years ago, and fair do’s to him for only saying nice things at a time when she would rather forget he ever existed.
  9. Ron B

    If Roy Keane played for us

    Brady won a couple of Serie A medals in his two seasons at Juventus, which isn’t to be sniffed at; scored the title-winning goal for the second one too. Arsenal didn’t win anything during his time with them though. How very different that is to nowadays...
  10. Ah, there’s a player who pissed it up the wall! In the England team at 19, three league titles (two of them doubles) and the Cup Winners Cup when he was barely 25, playing for Exeter by the age of 31.
  11. You’re spot on - the hype was that we were going to unveil Pallister, only for Rushie to be unveiled instead. They thought they had Hysén tied up, only for him to come to us instead. United spent years trying to sort their defence out under Ferguson, with Bruce being a second choice signing (Terry Butcher was all set to go there from Rangers but then got injured), Pallister and Bruce looking a truly awful combination for their first few months, Mal Donaghy going there for a small fortune from Luton when he was already comfortably into his 30s, Paul Parker also costing huge money but soon being perma-crocked, etc. Hysen, by contrast, looked silky for his first year, then his lack of pace was exposed on his second season, and he barely featured at all under Souness in his last term.
  12. Sorting through piles of old stuff, I found a pile of pre-season squad photos from yesteryear. And there he was, a fresh-faced Nigel Clough, Liverpool’s big pre-season signing. I was... a bit ambivalent about him at the time to be honest. As a kid Peter Beardsley had been my favourite Liverpool player, and Clough seemed like both a belated and inferior replacement. I was quickly staying very quiet about that though; two goals on his debut, two more by the end of August, four wins from five games to put us top of the league. Was the Souness revolution finally going to deliver? it didn’t, obviously, and Clough’s career just kinda died from there. Those four early goals were half of his tally for the club. He lasted two-and-a-half years for us, but hardly featured at all for the last 18 months of that. And although it’s slightly out of the remit of this post, his entire career continued to nosedive after he left us too. Souness made worse signings than Clough, who also seems like a good bloke, but none of them made such a brilliant start before revealing themselves as a massive misstep (did Paul Stewart even have one good game for us?). Clough feels like he was the one who started best only to be rubbish though, of all signings by any Liverpool boss.
  13. Scott Carson has had one of the most bonkers footballing careers.
  14. A bold move to replace Shearer with these two; great together at Chelsea in the 80s but a complete disaster at The Dell and both left on a free transfer at the end of the season. Cracking choice, Tony.