Ex-Everton Manager Howard Kendall has has a subtle swipe at Rafa’s rotation, whilst Liverpool’s Steve Finnan has leapt to the defence of the controversial tactic, saying “â€œitâ€™s only right to freshen things up, and Iâ€™m sure everyone is behind the manager.â€ The Liverpool manager’s tactics have come under increasing criticism of late with his Liverpool winning just one game in their last six games excluding the Carling Cup.
Kendall didn’t mention anyone by name but it is pretty obvious when the subject of rotation is being brought up that Rafa is the one being targeted, especially my an ex-Everton player and manager. Kendall said that:
“From a personal point of view, when I was managing I always strived to get a team that would select itself and played whoever was capable of coming in to do a job if and when necessary. Now it seems that certain managers are making changes just for the sake of it – they have bought a squad and intend to use it.I really donâ€™t think you can pick one team for one game and keep tinkering. Surely the recipe for success is having a settled startling line-up?”
Liverpool’s Steve Finnan is of a different opinion. He told the Liverpool Echo that although every player wants to feature as much as possible, they all understand that it is part of the system that Rafa employs.
Finnan says that Rafa’s trophy haul reflects the brilliance of rotation. Finnan said:
â€œYou only have to look at the managerâ€™s CV. Judge him by the trophies he has won, and they show he is a top manager.It (rotation) is obviously a subject that is raised a lot, and questions are asked, but it freshens up the squad, keeps players on their toes.If a player is unhappy because he is not playing, thatâ€™s only natural because you want to play in a lot of games.But with so many games at club level, and with internationals, it could be over 60 games per season.The manager calls the shots. You have to get used to it, and at a club like Liverpool, you are going to have to get used to it.”
Finnan and several other Liverpool players, will have limited time to train and focus on this weekend’s Merseyside derby at Goodison Park. Finnan is with the Irish squad preparing for Wednesday’s game with Cyprus, we hope that Rafa isn’t going to use all of this as an excuse.