Being Brendan Rodgers: Liverpool’s EPL woes
It has been an extremely challenging start to the EPL As a Manchester United devotee, I’ve had to deal with De Gea’s flaps, Vidic’s dickey knee, Giggs’ arthritic condition, Scholes’ continued calming presence as our midfield’s saving grace, and Nani.
But more demanding than accepting an opening game loss to Everton or the shambles of a performance against Spurs, has been the display of self restraint required not take the piss out of Liverpool FC at every available opportunity.
I’ve used every fiber of my being to hold back, and my word it’s been a thankless task.
Believe me it hasn’t been through a lack of ammunition. It’s been Liverpool’s worst start since before Alexander was Great.
Three points off the bottom, negative goal difference, losing to Man United, letting Andy Carroll go without bringing in a replacement, floating Robbie Fowler, Michael Owen and/or Emile Heskey as possible solutions to their threadbare striking options, Luis Suarez trialing for the Uruguayan diving team, Jonjo Shelvey’s head, Raheem Sterling’s power sperm, and dominating possession without scoring goals. The list goes on, and on, and on.
Throughout all of this I’ve remained merciful. As the Good Book says, do unto others etcetera, etcetera.
But Lord please forgive me. I can hold back no longer.
The teaser trailer for the next episode of ‘Being: Liverpool’ features Liverpool gaffer Brendan Rodgers (desperately trying to) inspire his team by brandishing three envelopes during a team talk.
He tells his charges he knows there are three players among them that will let him down the cause this season, and he implores them to do whatever they can to avoid having their name penned in aforementioned envelope.
That’s because it is!
If you haven’t seen it I implore you to Google ‘brendan rodgers envelopes.’ It doesn’t matter how bad your day has been, I guarantee it’ll put a smile on your dial, unless of course you’re unlucky enough to belong to the Liverpool faithful.
The look on his players’ faces is priceless. There’s obviously a disconnect between the message Rodgers is trying to deliver and the information that’s being absorbed by the players.
Supposedly Sir Alex pulled a similar stunt in the early 90’s with Manchester United to great effect. Unfortunately Rodgers has neither the gravitas nor the charisma to pull this off. It’s hard to take seriously a Northern Irishman who looks like an extra from ‘The Hobbit.’
First of all most Scousers struggle with the simple task of reading and writing, so there are obvious issues with most of them not being able to recognise their names in print. Rodgers may be better served just printing their numbers which are more easily identified, although still a challenge for many Liverpudlians.
Raheem Sterling stares at the envelopes in the hope they all contain a baby bonus cheque to support his growing brood. Three kids at 17 years of age! Believe me this guy needs all the financial assistance he can get.
I know Stewart Downing is secretly optimistic his name is in one of the envelopes; at least that way he’s confident he’ll get a run on the park this season. Ditto Jordan Henderson.
Joe Allen ponders the prospect of his name being in the mix. He might be able to force a move back to Swansea City.
And Stevie G has similar thoughts. If he drops the ball he might get to join his soul-mate Dirk Kuyt at Fenerbahçe.
Finally Jamie Carragher is praying for Brendan Rodgers’ name to figure at season’s end. Is he the only one pining for Rafa’s return?
Meanwhile the international contingent has no idea what Rodgers is babbling on about.
Luis Suarez, fresh from abusing young Oussama Assaidi, wants tickets to the upcoming ‘John Terry talks Race Relations’ seminar, while you get the impression Fabio Borini is looking to get a one-way ticket back to Italy.
He was led to believe his transfer was to Liverpool, Australia, joining his compatriot Alessandro Del Piero down under. Instead he’s been duped with a depressing stint in Merseyside.
There’s almost a Shakespearean quality to the tragedy that has become Liverpool FC. Or for some, myself included, a Shakespearean comedy is more apt a description.
This tale has featured an aging Prince unable to relinquish his claim to the throne, dour servants loyal to the cause, a big friendly giant from the North, a Latino court jester, a shylock ready to take a pound of flesh for payment, and the return and fall of a king.
I can’t wait for the next installment in this epic saga.