Things are looking up at Anfield.
Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has pledged his commitment to the club after being “very impressed” with new manager Roy Hodgson’s plans.
Gerrard’s future at Anfield has been the subject of intense speculation all summer, with Real Madrid reportedly lining up a move for his signature.
However, England ace Gerrard insists he plans to stay at Liverpool having been impressed by new boss Hodgson’s vision for the club.
“I made it clear that I simply needed to concentrate on the World Cup and then have a decent holiday with my family,” Gerrard told the Liverpool Echo.
“I wanted the chance to meet Roy Hodgson privately and having done so, I’m very impressed with his plans for the future.
I’ve only returned to training today at Melwood with some of the other World Cup players, but I can’t wait for the new season to start.” (Sky Sports)
When the World Cup was over and we all got back to the craziness that is club football I was a little concerned about the club’s immediate future. Rafa had gone but we seemed no nearer to finding a replacement and the constant crisis caused by the mere existence of Tom Hicks and George Gillett was hanging like a noose around the club’s neck. Things look far rosier now.
Roy Hodgson arrived and though his arrival was a little underwhelming he seems more than more the correct fit for the club at this moment in time. His capture of Joe Cole made me even more hopeful and now hearing that Steven Gerrard commit his future to the club makes me excited about the coming season.
As an Anfield season ticket holder I have to say that last season was perhaps the worst I have experienced as a fan of the club. So many low points, so many poor displays and so many poor decisions made by those in positions of power left me extremely frustrated.
The feeling of abject failure ran prevalent throughout the season and whilst Rafa wasn’t solely to blame for shortcomings on the field of play it was maybe the right time for us to part company. There are signs also that there will be some money to reinvest in more additions. Yossi has gone and that could turn out to be a mistake. The Israeli wanted to stay but appeared to have made his decision to leave long before Hodgson honed into view. Funnily enough I think Roy would have known to use Benayoun more frequently.
Emiliano Insua has also been offloaded and that too must have been more down to the Argentine’s decision to try a new challenge. Javier Mascherano may well not return to the club either and his reported antics of not answering the boss’s calls is childish and smacks of a player trying to engineer, unsubtly, an Anfield exit. I am sure most fans would agree, if he wants to leave then sell him for a good price and do is quickly. He’s a great player on his day but no boss should have to persuade a player to stay.
This coming season is a crucial one for the club. With any luck new owners will take the club out of the hands of the inept Americans. With some of our deadwood chopped away by the new boss and some clever additions and we will hopefully be heading back towards the top four. Clearly we shouldn’t get to carried away. The proof will be in the pudding and that’s why I am eagerly awaiting the Arsenal clash as it will be an instant appraisal of where we can hope to aim.
I can hardly wait!