Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Cool NEW Dalglish T-Shirts

Celebrate the second coming of King Kenny with this stylish T-Shirt designed exclusively for LFC Alert. Made by the fans for the fans, this T-Shirt is only available here and comes in two varieties:

Red T-Shirt with white trim ...........White T-Shirt with red trim

The name 'Dalglish' is emblazoned across the chest, with the legend:
'King of the Kop Since 1977' written underneath.

For added style the design has been treated with a 'vintage, worn' look.

This classic design is screen printed onto 100% pure cotton Fruit of the Loom 165gsm T-Shirts and is available directly from LFC Alert

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

English for Dummies: RANT

The press once again, presumably in an attempt to ‘sensationalise’ their articles, have been over indulging in phrases that do not accurately describe their stories. Recent point in quote is the Guardians article entitled “Kenny Dalglish begins his second coming at Liverpool with a rant”

‘Rant’, as previous boss Rafael Benitez knows all too well, is a word that has been over-used in describing Liverpool manager’s press conferences. Incredibly, even with my failed ‘O’ level, I knew better then the journalists (with their fancy degrees), on the correct usage of the word. So, wanting to help in any way possible, I decided to post a series of ‘Quick Help’ guides, to journalists who are unable to discern the ‘truth’ from ‘sensationalism’. A sort of 'English for Dummies' if you will.

Step 1 in this series is:

v. rant·ed, rant·ing, rants
To speak or write in an angry or violent manner; rave.
To utter or express with violence or extravagance: a dictator who ranted his vitriol onto a captive audience.
1. Violent or extravagant speech or writing.
2. A speech or piece of writing that incites anger or violence:
3. A criticism done by ranting; A wild, incoherent, emotional articulation; To speak or shout at length in an uncontrollable anger; To criticize by ranting.
4. A rant is a speech or text that does not present a well-researched and calm argument; rather, it is typically an attack on an idea, a person or an institution. Very often rants lack proven claims. Such attacks are usually personal attacks.

With this in mind, you can view Kenny Dalglish's recent aforementioned 'rant' here

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

“I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore”

Rafael Benitez still clearly casts a long shadow of Liverpool football club and even the Premier League. His comments yesterday, following Roy Hodgson’s accusations that he barred Kop legend Kenny Dalglish from Melwood training ground, have been lampooned in the press once more. Indeed it is a strange position that current boss Roy Hodgson finds himself in, in that his predecessor gains more press headlines then himself. Hodgson, during his pre match conference at the weekend said: “When it was mooted the club wanted me for the job I made it clear to Kenny I wanted him on board and it wouldn’t be like it was with Benítez where you are here in name but never allowed to set foot into Melwood and we don’t want anything to do with you.”

Rafa, who was instrumental in bringing Dalglish back to Anfield, was forced to address the issue yesterday, after repeated questions from the media asking for his opinion on Roy’s comments. Not surprisingly this has been laughed off by the press like it’s the latest rants of a loon who can’t stop having a pop at people. Well if you repeatedly ask the question, then feign surprise at the answer, there is clearly an agenda in place and a myth to perpetuate. The press’s latest reporting of Rafa’s suggestion that “some people cannot see a priest on a mountain of sugar.” has been met with smirks, puzzlement and bemusement. Although evidently aimed at Hodgson, the comment should also ironically apply to the press, as they’re clearly unable to spot the truth even when it stares them straight in the face. Undoubtedly the statement refers to the ease with which the priest's black robes can be spotted against the white of the mountain of sugar. Simple. However an agenda driven, xenophobic British press would prefer to laugh at the Spaniards latest attempt to educate them in Spanish colloquialisms.

Indeed the press failed to reports Hodgson own xenophobia recently when following the Merseyside Derby. A journalist from Scandinavia suggested Liverpool’s lack of goals was clearly because there was no supply line to Torres.
Hodgson asked: “Are you from Denmark?”
“No, Norway,” replied the visitor.
“Ah, two countries I never want to work in again,” replied Hodgson.

How was this insulting, dare I say racist comment greeted by the press? Martin Samuel reporting for the Daily Mail called Hodgson ‘chippy’
It’s clear the foreign press has a better understanding of Liverpool then the British press, and the British press is happy to let this type of comment slip because they ‘like’ Roy.

Hodgson who has said one ludicrous comment after another, whilst in charge of the Reds has gone from insulting the fans with his comment: "The protest does not help but it is something I have had to live with since I came to the club," to calling the win at Bolton a “famous victory”.

Not a peep from the press though. They continually call for him to have more time whilst he re-builds the wreck of a club left by big spending Benitez. Indeed, such is the absurd myth surrounding how brilliant Hodgson is, Bolton boss Owen Coyle recently laughably claimed: “He is an elite coach in the world of football.”

However all these comments are reported on in complete seriousness without a hint of irony. So when Rafael Benitez enters the frame and is asked to answer the lies uttered by Hodgson, this is how it’s reported:

The Telegraph says:
“Inter Milan manager Rafael Benítez launches tirade at Liverpool manager Roy HodgsonForget the “facts”, forget the “milk”. This was the Rafa rant to end all Rafa rants. The evening the former Liverpool manager unceremoniously turned on his successor, Roy Hodgson”

Incredibly the ex boss still has an intuitive relationship with Liverpool fans, something Hodgson will never have. Most appear to support him over our current boss. Benitez, speaking about Roy Hodgson’s press conferences last night, said: "Every single press conference is even worse than the last one. He's talking about things that he doesn't know.”

"Maybe he hasn't been in Liverpool too long. We gave the fans their pride - again. We fought for the fans, we fought for the club and we fought for our players.”

Well now its time to fight for him.

Rafa's statement was a call to arms for the fans. Benitez has had to endure a dishonourable few months as accusations from the media, experts, ex players, Premiership managers, ex owners, ex managers, and yes, sadly even our own fans, try to revise his history as manager of Liverpool FC.

The 1976 classic film ‘Network’ satires a generation of people who have become lethargic, complacent and whose minds have become softened by the seduction of the media. Its main character Howard Beale in its most famous scene proclaims: “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore,” and it’s time for fans to do the same. The Madrid born manager understands the city of Liverpool and its fans, and he has not stopped fighting for this club, even now as he manages Inter Milan. So neither should the fans.

Some fans state that Benitez should keep quiet, but why should he have to endure the lies and myth making of the last few months? I wouldn’t. And using the same argument, why can’t Roy keep his mouth shut?

I may be accused of being a Rafa apologist, but I apologise for nothing if it means standing up to lies, miss-truths and falsification of our history.

“O Captain! My Captain!" Señor Benitez.

Monday, 1 November 2010

Benitez answers back after Hodgson's slur

Ex Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez, has defended himself after current LFC boss Roy Hodgson accused him of banning Reds legend Kenny Dalglish from Liverpool's Melwood training ground during his time in charge.

Rafa who is back in England for Tomorrow night's Champions League match at Tottenham, was attempting to once again set the record straight in front of a baying press pack

"I think that Mr Hodgson, he doesn't understand," Benitez said.

"Every single press conference is even worse than the last one. He's talking about things that he doesn't know.

"And some people cannot see a priest on a mountain of sugar.

"Maybe he hasn't been in Liverpool too long. We gave the fans their pride - again. We fought for the fans, we fought for the club and we fought for our players.

"So maybe he cannot understand this."

He added: "I brought back Kenny Dalglish to do a role in the club and Christian Purslow gave him another role.

"He (Hodgson) doesn't know but I will explain it to him.

"So, instead of talking about the flips or the flops, he has to concentrate on his players, try to do his best.

"He has a good job to do."

"They've signed nine players.

"With £10million net spending, I left that squad with £300million value, 13 internationals.

"So, instead of talking about flips and flops, he has to concentrate on his job, try to do his best and not talk about the level of his players or the new players.

"Concentrate, try to do your best because it will be the best for the club and it will be the best for the fans."

No doubt Benitez’s comments will attract more criticism from the British press intent on re-writing his history, as another “rant”.

Although the repeated questions from the press asking for his views have been carefully edited out, his comments can be viewed here

Monday, 26 October 2009

Media Round-Up: Liverpool 2 - Manchester United 0

What a difference a day makes! Today's round up of media talk is an interesting mixed bag of reviews. Having spent most of the week sharpening the guillotine in preparation of our managers execution, Rafa's critics had their hopes dashed after his team deservedly beat Manchester United. Not surprisingly some journalists appear to think Rafa has somehow done a deal with the devil and his execution has just been postponed, much to their annoyance. One would think that Rafa was responsible for war crimes such was their urgency to depose of the Anfield boss.

The chances of Rafa Benítez cracking a smile are as likely as Gary Neville being invited to turn on the Christmas lights in Penny Lane or Nemanja Vidic ever finishing one of these games. Impassive throughout, Liverpool’s manager should really have allowed himself a little grin after this richly-deserved, pressure-releasing triumph over Manchester United. He’d earned it.

This was Liverpool’s day from the moment the Kop brilliantly mocked the few beach-balls flying out from the United corner with hundreds of their own, from the moment the hairs on the back of local necks stood up in salute of a powerful rendition of You’ll Never Walk Alone.

For all the talk of Benítez’s bad buys and the manager’s cold character, yesterday showed that with leaders like Carragher around, Liverpool must always be respected.

As he warmed up along the touchline, Neville kept lecturing the linesman in-between goading lippy Liverpool fans. Mike Phelan, Ferguson’s No 2, eventually had to bring the club’s stroppy No 2 back into the dug-out. Neville’s behaviour was disgraceful. No one expected anything else.

United’s keeper had no chance when Liverpool, palpably the better, hungrier side, came calling in the 65th minute. The ball flew from Kuyt to Yossi Benayoun to Torres, who was hurtling down the inside-right channel, pursued by Rio Ferdinand. United’s centre-half could not live with the pace and determination of Torres’s run, nor Van der Sar cope with the speed of the Spaniard’s shot, which arrowed past him into the roof of the net as Kopites raised their own roof.

The Guardian has an: 'Victory over Manchester United gives Rafael Benítez some breathing space', however the actual story doesn't live up to it's exploitational tag line, but does say: "victory over Manchester United rescued the Anfield club's season." Elsewhere the paper says:

United were merely 1-0 down when Sir Alex Ferguson sent on Michael Owen against his former club. With 10 minutes left, the striker was brought down by Carragher. It could have been a straight red card for the centre-back, but the referee, Andre Marriner, settled for a caution, presumably because he had some suspicion that Owen had not been heading straight for the target.

Liverpool can allow themselves a few moments when their minds are occupied by no more than a glow of satisfaction. The side was neither distracted nor apprehensive. That air of purpose could be sensed in the early exchanges when Fábio Aurélio's free-kick demanded an alert response from Edwin van der Sar. It is unarguable that Liverpool should be gauged by their efforts over a period far longer than that of an afternoon, but Benítez should enjoy a respite after getting most calculations correct against United.

After a week in which his regime has been questioned like never before — although not within the club, where his relationship with the board is infinitely healthier than two years ago — Benítez was entitled to enjoy this.

Ferguson complained afterwards about his team’s lack of penetration. He was brave to do so, since it gave rise to all manner of awkward questions. The dissenting grumbles had been kept to a minimum in the previous 11 matches — ten wins and one draw since that surprise defeat by Burnley in the opening week of the season — but they do not look the same side without Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Independent's review of the match reads more like a character assassination of the manager, with the headline:

'Torres picks the lock for Benitez's latest escape'

English football's great managerial escapologist once again picked the lock on the chains around him with a win that turned Liverpool's rapidly diminishing season upon its head.

Of course, the problems that afflicted Liverpool through the four defeats that preceded this game do not go away with one sweep of Torres' boot. Benitez has still made a lot of bad signings and is still prone to bizarre decisions, but yesterday he re-affirmed to the club's owners and his adoring fans the old Benitez mystique.

The result left Anfield the happiest dysfunctional family you will ever see. The day began with the protest march against owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett before the game; it ended with a directors' box full of middle-aged American blokes in suits exchanging embarrassing high-fives. In the Kop and around the ground, the divisions were put aside to focus on one common enemy.

Ferguson conceded that Liverpool deserved their victory, which was remarkable given that he did not even go that far when Liverpool won 4-1 at Old Trafford last season. Maybe he senses that for all the sound and fury around Liverpool yesterday, they are still a long way from title contenders.

The Mail
Not until the team were on the bus en route to the stadium did Benitez decide to risk Torres for this match, and how relieved he must be that he made that call. No other striker in Liverpool's squad would have scored the 64th-minute goal that ignited this contest.

No other striker would have possessed the speed, strength, composure and skill first to hold off the challenge of Rio Ferdinand and then to unleash the shot that flew beyond the reach of Edwin van der Sar and into the roof of the United net.

It was a wonderful example of why Torres is among the finest forwards in the world, and all the more remarkable for the fact that the Spaniard was not even fit. Not only had he hardly trained but he needed a painkilling injection just to get on the field.

His goal amounted to an adrenaline shot for Liverpool; a goal that revitalised a team who appeared to be on their knees after four straight defeats, and a goal that shifted the focus away from Anfield and back to Old Trafford.

It is no longer the durability of Jamie Carragher that is a concern but that of Ferdinand; no longer how Liverpool will respond to a morale-sapping defeat but how United will.

The Mirror
This was the day the title race was supposed to be reduced to a two-horse race, the day that Liverpool were exposed as feckless challengers whose hopes would be over for another season.
Instead, that ridiculously premature premise was exposed as the nonsense it most patently is, in what will surely be one of the most open, exciting and unpredictable Premier League contests in recent years. Two challengers? There could be six.

Rafael Benitez entered this game under so much pressure that his job was supposed to be on the line. At the end, with deafening adulation washing down the banks of the Anfield terraces, he was praised, not buried, as his side put on the sort of display required to reaffirm their elevated aspirations.

It was Manchester United, not the home team, who left unanswered some serious questions about their form and character, as they buckled under a second-half barrage inspired by rabid support of their side from a wide-eyed Kop.

In essence, this was a defining moment in the season, in the sense that it illustrated nothing can be defined so early. United have now lost twice already before the end of October, as have Chelsea, and both could easily have dropped more points.

There was still time for Vidic to be dismissed for a second - undebatable - yellow, and indeed he could have gone earlier for some unsavoury treatment of Torres, and Mascherano soon followed, again for two rash challenges conjured from the emotion of the occasion.

Benitez’s men added a second deep into a ridiculous five-minute stoppage time, when the tireless Kuyt cleverly held on until Lucas could eventually send sub David Ngog away to convert with no pressure, and from being out of the title race, Liverpool had their redemption and resurrection in one, magnificent moment.

Torres played through the pain barrier

Liverpool hot-shot striker Fernando Torres has admitted that he played through the pain barrier in the Reds 2-0 Premiership victory over bitter rivals Manchester United.

"I wasn't really at my best. We knew before the game I couldn't play to 100 per cent because I had some pain in some actions, but in games like this the pain doesn't matter," said Torres to the official site.

"I feel a bit of pain when I shoot across so I could only shoot towards the near post - it was the only thing I could do!"

"I am really happy for the fans and the players and we will enjoy this," said Torres.

"We are in the race again. We knew before the game that we had to win and we did it. Now we have a bit of confidence but we have to keep it going on Wednesday in the Carling Cup against Arsenal.

"Then we have to be focused for Fulham. But we feel like a strong team again because we're working all together like in the past.

"We will see what happens and then look at things at the end."

Reds boss Rafael Benitez confirmed Torres was not 100% fit, and the decision to play him was made on the coach traveling towards the stadium.

“I got Fernando’s opinion on the coach and, after talking with the staff, we decided he would play," said Rafael Benitez.

“You could see that he was not 100 per cent and you could see that he was not fresh, but sometimes, 80 per cent of Fernando can make a difference.

"We knew that he was not 100 per cent fit but it wasn’t a risk so in the end he was able to play.

“It has been a fantastic result, maybe it was the perfect game because we knew that we had to perform against a good team in front of our own fans and it was a fantastic performance from the players.”

Sunday, 25 October 2009

The fans gave us 12 men in United victory says Benitez

Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez says passion, character and every last fan in the Kop played a part in today's well deserved victory over Manchester United. Two goals from Fernando Torres and David Ngog sunk United in a passionate match that saw both Nemanja Vidic and Javier Mascherano sent off following two yellow cards apiece.

"The players showed character and the fans were behind the players, we had 12 men," said Benitez on Sky Sports.

When asked what the difference was, Benitez replied:

"I think the passion, the attitude , the character and also some good play sometimes, but especially the mentality, everyone was working together, plus the goalkeeper to the last fan on The Kop."

Rafa was then asked if he answered a lot of questions today?

"The players answered a lot of questions, that is the most important thing."

Benitez, had been given a vote of confidence earlier today from Liverpool managing director Christian Purslow. When asked about his thoughts, the Red boss said:

"One game at a time. We are just thinking about the next game, Christian Purslow was supporting me and the team, but we have to keep going.

"We cannot be too excited with this win, we have another game on Wednesday."

When asked what he thought a result like this proved, Rafa said:

"For me that the team is better than people think, and it shows the character and quality that we have. Its just a question of having a little bit of luck and show this character in every game"

Sky Sports pundit Geoff Shreeves then said: "You've had a huge amount of criticism at any point has it made you angry?

"Not really, I was just trying to be focused and concentrate on my job. I knew the only way to change things in football is to win games."

Fergie’s Absolute Bollocks!

Ferguson says referee was swayed by crowd in Liverpool defeat

Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson has questioned the performance of referee Andre Marriner, following Liverpool's stunning victory over arch rivals Manchester United today. The comments come a few weeks after the United boss questioned the fitness of referee Alan Wiley, after their 2-2 draw with Sunderland. Speaking to Sky Sports after the game, the United boss also cast doubt over the experience of the referee.

"I think they got a wee bit caught up in some of the atmosphere - the wounded animal aspect of it. The fans were fanatical and every decision they put the referee under pressure," said the Scot, nicknamed Taggart by Reds fans.

"For instance on Vidic, clearly it is a foul. But then he wins the second ball and gets booked for that. The crowd got him booked"

"The atmosphere is hard to handle for the referee. Whether he had enough experience, I don't know. He will certainly learn from it."

Ferguson added: "The most controversial decision was Carragher bringing down Michael Owen. He was clear through.

"The laws of the game were altered to prevent professional fouls of that nature and if Carragher goes off, he is their best player and their captain. It would have been a different game. They would have been under pressure.

"The referee was only four or five yards from it he cannot use a covering defender as an excuse. Michael was clean through. With Michael's pace he is going to get away from him."

Ferguson said regarding Carragher's challenge on Carrick: "He has gone right over the top of the ball. If it is outside of the box it is a free-kick and maybe a yellow card.

"But it was inside the box and the referee was only six yards from it. It was another bad decision."

Incredibly Ferguson, however, did concede Liverpool were worthy winners. "Liverpool were the better team and I am not taking anything away from them at all," he said in the Guardian.

"They deserved to win the game as it was a disappointing performance from us. We were not good enough."

Benitez job safe states LFC director Purslow

Liverpool FC's managing director Christian Purslow has stated that Rafael Benitez's job is safe, following days of press speculation claiming otherwise. Speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live Sportsweek today, Purslow also stated that coveted players Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres where not for sale at any price, following more wild media speculation that the club would have to sell the duo because of its financial instability.

"The most important aspect of the football club I was involved in in my first week in the job was securing Rafa for another five years. You only have to look at the Premiership era and our two major competitors in the last 10 to 12 years to see the benefits of longevity," said Purslow.

"Liverpool Football Club is on a long-term journey and that journey is to be the most successful club, firstly in our country and secondly in the world, and you don't do that by worrying about short-term results. You do that by having long-term plans centring on the people and the strategy. Rafa Benítez is absolutely central to that plan."

"The core of the team which won 86 points last season remains intact with some excellent additions, so I have every reason to believe we can perform at that level this season over the season."

When asked whether he would guarantee Benítez's position, if the club do not win the league in May, he said: "Yes I would."

Purslow also confirmed Fernando Torres had no clauses in his contract that allowed him to leave Anfield if Liverpool do not qualify for the Champions League next season.

He said: "Fernando signed an extension to his contract this summer. He has a five-year contract. He is a crucial leader in our team. He loves Liverpool Football Club. He has been fantastic around the place. Fernando Torres and Liverpool Football Club go together and I believe they will go together for the length of his career."

To the question that he was not for sale at any price, Purslow replied: "Correct." Purslow also stated the same went for Gerrard.

He also insisted Javier Mascherano is happy at the club, saying: "He is the leading central holding player in world football. It is inevitable that big clubs will covet players of that quality.

"We also had another central midfielder [Xabi Alonso] coveted by a world team in the summer who left us. We sat down with Javier at the time and he reasserted his total commitment to Liverpool. He has had a lot going on with the Argentina [World Cup] qualification situation, which is now behind him. He is a hugely important player for us. He is a leader and this week in the aftermath of [the home defeat by] Lyon he has been a powerful figure."

Purslow also revealed the club are four weeks into a process of raising new equity in the club:

"There has been a huge amount of interest in the club from some extremely wealthy and expert investors but it will take three to six months to pull that together.

"It means there will be new investment into the football club. Mr Hicks and Mr Gillett have no plans to sell their shares. We will be issuing new equity to new investors, broadening our ownership."

Saturday, 24 October 2009

LFC fans plan protest against owners tomorrow

Liverpool supporters group 'The Spirit of Shankly' will stage a protest march against the owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett tomorrow before the Premiership clash against Manchester United. The march will start at 12 noon from the Liverpool Supporters Club on Lower Breck Road and will finish outside the Kop stand.

"There is a lot of anger and people want their feelings known - Hicks and Gillett are not welcome at the club," spokesman James McKenna told BBC Sport.

The 'SOS' says 4,000 fans turned out for a similar protest in September 2008, before Liverpool beat Manchester United 2-1 at Anfield and are calling on all Reds fans to show similar support tomorrow. The group are marching to express their anger at the clubs owners inability to invest within the club and are also apposed to the debt that the club have been leveled with.

"We hope a couple of thousand fans will turn out for the protest," added the spokesperson.

The groups website has also posted an interview with George Gillett given at the Liverpool FC Academy prior to the Hull City game on the 26th September, which can be heard here.