Wednesday, November 4, 2009

From Lucas to Rafa Benitez: Off With His Head!!

When we beat the Mancs last week, everyone including his pet rock was jumping with joy I am certain. Everyone except those in the clueless bandwagon. Then, afterwe lost to Fulham, the dam burst further!

How do some fans miss the obvious I do not know. We have been overachieving with Rafa at the helm and yet these people scream murder and want Rafa to be sacked. We know that if we don't qualify for the knock-out stages in the CL, we will lose at least another 10 million. Fund which Rafa could do with so as to buy players in the January window because the owners are never going to give him any from their own pockets. That's it if Rafa is actually given the fund from the CL, and it is used not to pay off the interest on the debts. Hence, we need to win in the CL tonight to be able to compete in the PL, no two ways about it, except if some rich billionnaire comes and gives Rafa money to buy, without having to sell. So, was it wrong for Rafa to think about the next important game when we were at Fulham?

Everyone knows about the injuries to our players, including the swine (?) flu pendemic that also hit some players who played in the game against Fulham. A total of 12 players last I heard. Twelve! It was a gamble Rafa took to play some of these players, such as Lucas, and also playing Torres who was also injured and had to be injected because we don't have anyone else to rely on. The substitutes were needed to be done -- one because not to aggravate the injuries and two, for them to be available in the crucial CL game.

Those things are obvious to see by everyone who wants to see it. Unlike the pundits and journalists that have the agenda to vilify Rafa, which sadly I feel would still continue even if Rafa wins the PL. They talk as if they know what really is going on behind the scene when a wee bit of research will tell you about the circumstances we are in. They do it purposely because it sells. Which papers have reported about the ice-bag Torres needed after the Fulham game? None, because that will justify Rafa taking out Torres.

Rafa's records are also there to be seen, a record better than all the current managers such as Fergiescum and also better than Shankly and Paisley. Why isn't people going after Wenger's head or any of the other managers head for that matter? And why is that the expectation for our team is so great that we must win the PL this year? Or we should have won it last year? Or the year before?

Expectation is normal but once should take into account the circumstances. The expectation is so high this season BECAUSE Rafa took us to second spot last season with a point tally the highest since 88. One would think that Rafa is stupid and doesn't know about substitutions and buying players and is not interested buying players like Villa et al. He spent only a net of around 16M a season so far. Heck, by the looks of thing, Rafa seems to be sabotaging LFC, and he himself inflicted all the injuries unto the players and spread the flu himself. So that he could go to Real Madrid! Sheesh... We know why he couldn't buy those players he really wanted, why he had to buy and sign up for free the players he brought in, why he has to sell to buy, why he had to loan off players, etc. People talk as if it is very easy to manage a team like LFC, and this is from people who have never kicked a ball in their life, let alone managing a small team even!

One thing that bothers me. They whack Rafa and his tactics (most times wrongly too) but then do they come up with better solutions? As they say: opinion is like an ass-hole, everyone has one (including me of course) AND hindsight is always 20/20. And I will never believe Rafa would willingly throw a game away, no manager would be that stupid. He might gamble a player or two and hope for the best in a game, sometimes with results and sometimes without. But when he doesn't have a choice, he just prays for the best given the circumstances he is in i.e.: because we don't have Villa or Silva on the bench to throw into a game when a player of their stature is needed. But we see the impact of his decisions AFTER a game and damn!, hindsight is always 20/20.

Latest rumour is Real Madrid is going to offer 20M to LFC for Rafa's service with Alonso thrown in. There is a clause in Rafa's contract that says if he is sacked, the owners would have to pay something like 20M. Isn't it better to give Rafa the 20M to buy a player instead? Hell no! Sack Rafa instead! And bring in Souness they say! What would these people say to Real Madrid's offer if the rumour is true? Of course they will jump at that idea but will anything change is the line-up? Will the new manager get the funds Rafa did not get? Will the line-up and tactics the new manager uses change our fortunes? Will all the injuries we have suddenly become non-injuries? And is the manager's job only about choosing the players to play a game? There is no guarantee. Rafa is the best at his business, and that includes the A to Z of running a team and not only team selection mind you.

Whatever it is, we should be backing the team. Backing also includes backing up Rafa. He doesn't need us to also join the bandwagon that comprise pundits. ex-players and journalists who are after his head! We should first understand the circumstances at LFC i.e.: all the problems Rafa and the players face, and the least some fans could do is lower their expectations of winning the PL and the CL this year because we understand the circumstances and then support our teams to the fullest, hope for the best and enjoy watching the game. There will be joy and sorrows along the way. One week we beat the likes of Mancs and the other week we lose to the likes of Fulham. We will again beat the likes of the Mancs and hope we do not falter against the likes of Fulham (not that they are a team like MyTeam which would be easy meat for us) in the near future!

If we were to go by some of the lame arguments put forward by the kneejerkers/post-Istanbul-fans of we-must-win-everything-fast-no-matter-what, then lots of the managers would need to be sacked too. Their argument, Rafa has spent sooooo much money (which is of course false because we know the truth) and should have won the PL. So, they actually equate success with the funds spend, which is the truth of course. Well, some managers have spent more than Rafa so it is only fair that they are sacked too because they did not win anything:  try Chelsea who finished below us last season. Or, teams that do not win anything is justified because they spent less than LFC.  Well, then Rafa has spend less than the Mancs and Chelsea, so his not winning it should be justified too, no? But he still managed to take us to 2nd place last season, etc etc. Isn't it great?

I am actually worried for Rafa at this moment. He has had backing from the fans so far. We never hear about an anti-Rafa demonstrations. And this is one of the reasons Rafa has stayed put at LFC, because LFC fans are knowledgable fans and support (big word this) the club through thick and thin and know a team so good last season do not turn into this nightmarish team overnight. Knowledgable fans that know about his overachievement so far, what he had to endure with the jokers yanks and most importantly, how he had to sell to buy in the process of building eventhough so many obstacles were thrown in his path, and how injuries after injuries have marred his plans so far this season. But maybe, after tonight's game, if ever we lose (touch wood) there will be enough of these so-called fans, together with the so-called pundits and the pathetic journalists, rallied behind by some stupid former players/managers of LFC, who would really get under Rafa's skin and become forceful enough to drive him out of this beloved club of ours.

If that happens, that will yet be the biggest disaster for us.


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