The Premier and football leagues have started in earnest. It doesnt seem long since the dust had settled on a rumour filled transfer window. Over the past couple of days its started to creep its way back into the limelight.
I’ve decided to write this article now because after 2 months, 8 games (or more for sides in Europe) it’s a good time to take a look at how a summer filled full of hope and promises has panned out.
Now I’m a Liverpool fan but the content of this post could and will most probably ring true with fans of many teams.
So what’s my gripe?
For years now I’ve patiently waited for success and by this I mean a Premier League title. The summer always builds hope, new faces, build on a previous season and ‘kick-on’ but year after year i’m badly and disappointingly let down by the club I love.
So why is this? Well fans of most clubs will no doubt experience the same feelings. Talking your own clubs prospects up, over embellishing last season’s performances, justifying new signings and imagining seeing your captain hold aloft the coveted premier league trophy.
The problem is 99.9% of us are let down year after year.
Summers awash with transfer rumours (some often ridiculous) take over all manner of normal thinking. Another problem is the over analysing of football. The sheer popularity feeds pointless exposure, creating a whirlwind of exaggeration and hype. Bang average players are lauded as world class, or the new George Best / Zinedine Zidane etc etc…we’ve all seen it, we’ve all brought into these reports and we’ve all fallen for it.
As a red, i sat throughout the summer and watched things unfold. War chests, transfer funds were all written by reporters. A £200m overhaul to see Liverpool at last challenge for the title. Champions League qualification was a must to attract these superstars and guess what? Liverpool did it by overcoming Hoffenheim and there was still time to finally land these new faces that would mean a statue of Jurgen Klopp would stand side by side with Bill Shankly at Anfield.
So time came and went. The reporters continued to write about medicals and contracts and negotiations. I even watched with blind optimism fans tracking planes in the hope of landing a centre back. As funny and entertaining as that was, it was all bull.
Thursday 31st August 2017 – transfer deadline day. So far Liverpool had a few new faces but not the players that would transform us into title challenges like we’d been promised.
And then……I think it all dawned on us. Like the sun shining through parted clouds, the realisation that hit all reds like a brick wall.
We weren’t signing anyone. The long awaited and much needed Centre Back by the name of Virgil Van Dijk wasn’t happening. The box to box midfielder Naby Keita wasn’t happening, even last dash hopes of Thomas Lemar wasn’t happening.
What?? What happened to the £200m war chest that would make this team go down in history? What about the stories we read, the promises, the medicals that were booked in?
Facts are we were lied to. Who by we don’t know for sure? Did the clubs owners feed the media? Were stories of tapping up leaked by our own side in order to pacify the fans and so be able to tell them ‘we tried-they wouldn’t sell’.
I for one can’t believe for a second that a manager who although has his downfalls at times, would only have one target for a position that has dogged Liverpool football club for years.
I can’t believe that a manager who transformed Lewandowski and Aubameyang wouldn’t want to sign a top striker.
I can’t believe we’ve started a new season with 1 new player that makes the starting 11. I can’t believe I was stupid enough to fall for the lies in the summer.
So 7 / 8 games into the new season and here we are. The excuses are being made. The title challenge is a long way off and lack of investment shows.
Any team is a long long way off being able to compete with City Utd and Chelsea. It kind of makes the whole thing pointless. It’s not a level playing field after all. As a Liverpool fan were used to ‘making do’. For years we watched Lucas Leiva fill in at centre half and now laughably were being told Alberto Moreno has turned his career around.
In the meantime Man Utd have splashed out on a top striker and midfielder, Chelsea have spent a huge amount on a striker and strengthened whilst Man City have recognised last seasons failings and invested £200m + in their squad; and it certainly shows.
Meanwhile Liverpool continue to target the annual net spend figure we’ve all become accustomed to and have had a very mediocre start to what was billed as potential title challenge just a few weeks ago.
So what do i think will happen? The top 3 will be Utd City and Chelsea. We’ll all be told how amazing Pochettino is yet he won’t win anything again and as for Liverpool…..the best we can really hope for is 4th; not a title challenge like we were promised and at the moment even 6th looks highly unlikely.
No doubt the cogs on the rumour mill will be well oiled and cranked up soon ready for the January Window, and the circus will all start again come May.
The disappointment seems even more this season, more than ever. Maybe I bought into JKs enthusiasm and talking up of average players. Maybe his hands are tied and he’s making the best of a bad situation.
We all saw and read Everton’s dealings in this window. Some impressive players have failed to turn up. Is that Koeman or yet again bang average mediocrity lauded as world beaters. I remember pundits saying Everton would be pushing for top 4; no chance.
I also get fed up of ‘well Leicester did it’. Yes they did and fair play to them. But sometimes the luck of the gods shine on you and talk about landing on your feet. Having a period of City Utd and Chelsea struggling to find their feet with new or unhappy managers will happen once in several lifetimes.
I apologies if this article sounds down in the dumps. But this is how I feel after being let down. It can’t go on that false promises are made to keep us happy. In terms of Liverpool, no doubt we won’t keep up. Klopp is the man in charge and he’ll be the guy that takes the criticism and ultimately fall on his sword.
I honestly think if LFC got a management dream team of Jose pep Jurgen and Antonio to share the job they would still struggle to win the title when they can only spend 28p on a Centre back.
Low and behold the rumours HAVE started again. The fake news of players leaving and giving ultimatums has begun in preparation for another month of broken promises and let downs. Its incessant and never ending.
The lesson I’ve learned is take owners and reporters with a pinch of salt and deal with the fact the Premier League of English football is based around finances and consists of 3 teams City United and Chelsea.
If you want to compete with the best, you have to spend like the best and Liverpool along with many other teams simply can’t or won’t.