I”m actually not the biggest fan of the end-of-the-year wrap-ups, but I’m also never shy about sharing my opinion. Apparently my opinion won as I have put together my top 5 Good, Bad and Ugly of LFC 2010. Feel free to comment if you agree or don’t with my lists.
Truthfully I really have struggled to find much of a silver lining. Most of the encouragement has come from the potential of our players and owners versus the results or skill of our manager. In general its been a dark year for LFC but here is what I have cheered:
5. Torres returns to health - While I know his form hasn’t been great, I can only imagine its going to get better. His class is unquestionable and every striker goes through low points. The fact that it has coincided with our general malaise under Roy, I cannot put all the blame on him. The truth is he has little support in the creativity department and Roy’s stubborn refusal to leave his low pressure defensive system is not Nando’s problem. He will get his goals and I can only see the fact that he is playing regularly as a good thing.
4. Miereles and Lucas - Once he was put in his preferred position, Miereles has looked all the international star midfielder he was billed as. I can’t wait for his first 30 yard screamer for a goal. His partnership with Lucas has also seemed to bring out the best in both and over the last few weeks they have won the majority of the midfield battles they’ve been in. Of note, they do seem to play better when we press which is solely in Roy’s hands.
3. Some hope - While results have been considered tepid at best, I can’t help but see some hope for the future of this team. The constant rumor of back-room discord, owner shenanigans, Rafa’s demise, and generally poor play had really made the future dim. However since NESV’s purchase, they have done and said all the right things, giving me a sense that while its not great now, we are in good hands for the future.
2. The Ressies - If you haven’t kept up on the Academy and Reserves this year, you should do a little research. There are a few really exciting prospects in Tom Ince, Ayala, Suso, Sterling, Ngoo, Amoo as well as peripheral first teamers Jay Spearing, Pacheco, Kelley, and Eccleston. It is critical that Roy brings these kids along the right way. Lets not let these kids flounder and then regret it when we sell on star talent like Adam Hammill (if you don’t know who this is, look him up on YouTube).
1. NESV - This had to be number one, didn’t it? Ridding us of Hicks and Gillette who bought LFC for all the wrong reasons and settling our debts would have made them heroes in their own right. However Henry and Werner have added openness, honesty, and a sense that they have a real game plan as well as free tickets to a European night for the U-17s to boot. Deciding what they are going to do with Roy will be their biggest challenge, but they have gone a long way in convincing me that they are the right owners for this team. I also think they will really start to shine once the FIFA financial fair play rules come into play, and I suspect their pro-active approach to this major rules change may put us in the forefront in the years to come.
Stay tuned for the Bad and the Ugly.