Two Cups, One Goal
Feature by Kieran Davies
Updated Friday, 17th February 2012
So after a disappointing afternoon at Old Trafford for many reasons, the media seem to have averted their focus from trying to rebrand Liverpool as a 'racist club' to concentrating on linking Luis Suarez with 'escape routes' out of the UK.
None of this hype worries me as I think on a personal level he is enjoying life at Anfield and has a good network of close friends at the club. He also seems from his comments on Twitter time and time again that he is appreciative of the support he has had from the club and the fans during difficult times. He now needs to excel on the pitch and repay the fans for their faith.
This weekend brings a FA Cup tie at home against inconsistent Championship opposition in Brighton. Whilst they do have players with quality to shine on their day, their performances aren’t as consistent as Liverpool’s world class stars. It will be important not to take their opposition lightly and it will take a good performance from the Reds to see their opponents. Fans will be expectant of a comfortable victory, being at home will definitely make Kenny’s men firm favourites. Players and manager alike will be glad to turn attentions to matters on the pitch and away from the grilling from media they have endured all week.
In terms of expectation for the season, having thought about it I will still be disappointed whatever outcome if we miss out on Champions League football. This prevents you from signing a certain calibre of player and as good a man manager as Kenny may be, it would be difficult to convince and potential signing that qualification for the elite European competition is by any means guaranteed for the following season either. I don’t think any side in the Premier League can now expect qualification as a given as investment in clubs has shown with Tottenham and Newcastle that there are 6 or 7 teams willing to go the distance pushing for those places.
There is a positive side to the season still to look forward to. We are already going to Wembley for the League Cup final and have a real chance to try and win the FA Cup also. Of the sides left in the competition and having dumped out Man Utd, Liverpool need fear anyone. In the current first team squad only Gerrard, Carragher and Johnson have won silverware in England. Certain players like Dirk Kuyt, you couldn’t wish to see win a trophy in a Liverpool shirt. Irrelevant to the spin people put on the importance of the League Cup I think you will see a spirit about the players that if we win it, it will be as important as any trophy. Liverpool’s inspirational captain has never lifted the trophy as a captain for his team despite winning it twice, with Fowler and Hyppia having the honours respectively. He has even endured the pain of having scored an own goal in the final too.
To win a trophy this season or perfectly two, would surely appease a lot of the current squad and make them happy to commit more of their careers to seeing the Liverpool rebuilding through to fruition. We could see from the night at Anfield when we saw off Man City and the emotions of the manager how much it will mean to him to lead the side out at Wembley. They do say these things are like buses, you wait ages for one then two come at once, so let’s hope the same came be said about Wembley finals at the end of the season for Liverpool. The first obstacle is Gus Poyet’s Brighton and we one thing is for sure we will have to be on our game to see off the challenge.