30 August 2010

Rome wasn’t built in a day but...

...Pekan Trolak probably was. Have you been to Trolak? It’s a dead end, literally. Traffic can’t actually get through Trolak and one would have to do u-turn to get out of the town, an act that wouldn’t take too long since all there is the local Penghulu’s official residence, a post office that doubles as tyre shop (or something like that) and a barber, if I’m not mistaken. That’s it.

All this then conveniently brings me to Rome. OK, not really, but the official word from Liverpool Football Club is that Rome wasn’t built in a day and so, we should be patient with the current manager, that’s if, it was clear that he was trying to build Rome, not Pekan Trolak.

Eh? Hang on. Wasn’t he brought in to steady the ship and keep the team intact rather turn the club into another work-in-progress?

You see, I’m trying very hard to like Roy Hodgson’s regime at Anfield. Honestly, I am. After all, the Liverpool manager deserves all the support his predecessors received during their respective tenures at the club. The recent signing of Raul Meireles does certainly help as I was beginning to wonder, how in the world the Liverpool manager could think Christian Poulsen was a like-for-like replacement for the all-action Javier Mascherano.

Very much like when Rafa Benitez wanted to shore-up the defence by buying experience in the form of Sotirios Kyrgiakos, Hodgson was keen to do the same with the midfield hence, the acquisition of Poulsen. The two of them would be used in the Europa League, the Carling Cup, the FA Cup and probably against the League’s lesser teams when the manager opts to utilise the kids rather than Melwood’s finest. Makes complete sense.

But then, that’s where the similarity ends when it comes to these two managers’ transfer policies.

If it’s not clear already, I’d like to say that I like Liverpool’s previous manager. He didn’t compromise. Not when it came to his transfer policies. Either he‘d fork out tens of millions for the amazing talent he’s been eyeing for a while or he ends up spending a pittance for some unknown entity like say, David N’Gog, Jonjo Shelvey or Daniel Pacheco, even Lucas Leiva. Yes, at the moment they’re no world-beaters but at the very least, they have the potential to turn into magnificent players, at very reasonable costs.

Hodgson on the other hand, looks like he values experience. His track record certainly speaks for itself. Nothing particularly wrong with that really but when it comes at the expense of the selling Liverpool’s younger talents it starts to become a problem.

At the time of writing, Fulham’s Paul Konchesky looks like his on his way to Liverpool. I’m a fan of Konchesky and believe he is one of the more under-rated leftbacks in England. Unfortunately, it appears that on top of the usual cash amount, it will cost the club one Lauri Dalla Valle to obtain Konchesky’s services.


Pacheco’s name might be known by many at the moment but Dalla Valle wouldn’t be too far off either. The 19 year old Finnish striker is well-known to be one of Europe’s brightest talents and it looks like he’s on his way south to London while Konchesky at 29, makes his way North.

While there’s no guarantee that Dalla Valle would fully realise his potential over the coming years, I’d rather be patient and wait for Rome to be properly built with some of the world’s more exciting talent rather than look forward to a Trolak filled with a bunch of ageing Poulsens.

For the sake of the club, I’m hoping Roy really knows what he’s doing.

Note: No offense was meant towards the residents of Pekan Trolak. My experience of the place was almost 15 years ago at this stage. I'm sure the place is a bustling metropolis these days...


Ian Yee said...

I feel quite sorry for Hodgson. Liverpool already had enough troubles off the pitch when he signed on, and now he's lost the player whom in my humble opinion, was the most important part of the Liverpool puzzle on the pitch - Javier Mascherano.

For me, he is quite simply the best holding midfielder in the world. Gerrard and Torres might get the plaudits with their goal-scoring exploits up front, but Mascherano is the one who's been holding the defence and midfield together and allowing the stars to shine further up the pitch. He does what Makelele used to do for Chelsea.

Hodgson has moved quickly to replace him with Mereiles (and wisely so), but sadly, I think Mascherano's loss is nevertheless something Hodgson won't be able to compensate for in the near future. It will take some time for a club to get used to playing without such a dominating player in the heart of the team.

Then again, you can't feel too sorry for Hodgson either cos he probably knew Mascherano wouldn't stay...

Chip said...

In a way, I do feel sorry for Hodgson but the man knew full well what he was up against when he signed on.

He's doing things in different ways that's not necessarily to my liking but if it works, I'll be the first to put my hands up and admit that I was wrong. Time will tell...

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