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Souness' destruction of the squad

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In a fit of boredom last night I switched over to LFC tv and caught a few (crucial) minutes of Liverpool V Arsenal from 1994/5. The Robbie hatrick match

 

It struck me that while we have long derided Souness for "destroying the squad" he inherited, the one Evans had was not perhaps as decimated as I had thought...The team that day was...

 

James,

Jones, Nicol, Ruddock, Byornebye,

McManaman, Redknapp, Molby (Thomas 57), Barnes,

Rush, Fowler.

 

 

Contrast this with the team that demolished Coventry in May 1990:

Starting line-up

1 Bruce Grobbelaar

2 Glenn Hysen

3 Barry Venison

4 Gary Ablett

5 Gary Gillespie

6 Steve Staunton

7 Jan Mølby

8 Ronny Rosenthal

9 Ian Rush

10 John Barnes

11 Steve McMahon

 

 

On paper, you'd argue that Evans had access to some of the better elements of the team from 1990 (Rush, Barnes, Molby) and had "improvements" in Jones, Macca and Fowler.

 

Without getting into booze and passing pennies etc, it does sort of bely some of the view that Souness destroyed the squad wholesale. No, I am not suggesting we get Souey back. Perhaps a discussion other than the rest of the depressing s***

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There are two significant differences: one is that the key players hwo were in a lot of cases already nearing or past their peak were still there 5 years later and the other is that Souness bought (and overpaid for) replacements who largely were not in eth same class as those they replaced.

 

I have never been of the opinion that Souness destroyed the squad, after all he only let go those who didn't want to stay, but he diluted it massively by buying up any old shoite who was the tabloid flavour of the month. It was like I imagine a spending spree by Voronin and his missus to be - loads of cash splashed about but no quality or class discernible in any of the purchases.

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In a fit of boredom last night I switched over to LFC tv and caught a few (crucial) minutes of Liverpool V Arsenal from 1994/5. The Robbie hatrick match

 

It struck me that while we have long derided Souness for "destroying the squad" he inherited, the one Evans had was not perhaps as decimated as I had thought...The team that day was...

 

James,

Jones, Nicol, Ruddock, Byornebye,

McManaman, Redknapp, Molby (Thomas 57), Barnes,

Rush, Fowler.

 

 

Contrast this with the team that demolished Coventry in May 1990:

Starting line-up

1 Bruce Grobbelaar

2 Glenn Hysen

3 Barry Venison

4 Gary Ablett

5 Gary Gillespie

6 Steve Staunton

7 Jan Mølby

8 Ronny Rosenthal

9 Ian Rush

10 John Barnes

11 Steve McMahon

 

 

On paper, you'd argue that Evans had access to some of the better elements of the team from 1990 (Rush, Barnes, Molby) and had "improvements" in Jones, Macca and Fowler.

 

Without getting into booze and passing pennies etc, it does sort of bely some of the view that Souness destroyed the squad wholesale. No, I am not suggesting we get Souey back. Perhaps a discussion other than the rest of the depressing s***

 

Missing from the 90 side who were still in the squad and played most games were Nicol, Whelan, Beardsley, Hansen and Houghton.

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The problem with that lineup is that the players from the Dalglish era were all well past their best - Nicol didn't make many more appearances after that I don't think as his legs were gone. The reason he was playing all the old Dalglish players is that none of his own signings had been any good - Stewart, Saunders, Walters, Clough etc

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Think so. I also think Kenny had fallen into the same trap as Shanks in the late 60's, getting too attached to his players and not being ruthless enough in getting rid when they had passed their best. Didn't help either that he was also guilty of buying some shyte as well, Jimmy Carter for example.

 

Of course he hadn't had time to get over the trauma of Hillsborough which must have affected his judgement, but I do think the rot had started to set in before Souness arrived.

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I've always felt Kenny had significant culpability in our decline due to insufficient forward planning and the age of the squad he left behind.

 

Souness had no choice but to change things. He tried to change too much too fast, though and made too many poor buys.

 

 

He is more tainted for taking money form the rag and selling out to them. What a player he was, though.

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I've always felt Kenny had significant culpability in our decline due to insufficient forward planning and the age of the squad he left behind.

 

Souness had no choice but to change things. He tried to change too much too fast, though and made too many poor buys.

 

 

He is more tainted for taking money form the rag and selling out to them. What a player he was, though.

 

I agree, I think the writting was on the wall at the end of KK era and Souy tried to change it all too quickly. but he did buy some right ole s**** too..

 

he was an awesome player... but he should not have taken the money from the rag.

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Didnt Souness have the first season when that new rule came in about having so many English players?

 

 

But he still got rid of Beardsley a couple of seasons too soon, imo.

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His destruction of the boot room, changing the diet of players and our philosophy on simpler training which led to his now patented injury list set us back donkeys. It was the stuff that was sacred to us as a club, when Roy was appointed we stagnated in evolution which probably led to Houllier's early success with his changes from top to bottom.

Edited by Benzo-13

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James,

Jones, Nicol, Ruddock, Byornebye,

McManaman, Redknapp, Molby (Thomas 57), Barnes,

Rush, Fowler.

 

Starting line-up

1 Bruce Grobbelaar

2 Glenn Hysen

3 Barry Venison

4 Gary Ablett

5 Gary Gillespie

6 Steve Staunton

7 Jan Mølby

8 Ronny Rosenthal

9 Ian Rush

10 John Barnes

11 Steve McMahon

Grobbelaar

Jones Gillespie ***** Nicol

McMananan Molby McMahon Barnes

Rush Fowler

 

All those centrebacks and we still can't get a decent back four out of it.

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What Souness did give, forced by circumstances (the injuries due to his training methods and Phil Boersma), was a lot of young players a very early chance of first team football all at the same time. We struggled at times because of it, but Evans felt the benefit of it when he took over and the players were that much older and more experienced (yet still coming into their prime).

 

Am thinking of Fowler, McManaman, Redknapp, Jones, Hutchison, James, Harkness, Matteo, Marsh etc - some obviously achieved more than others!

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There are two significant differences: one is that the key players hwo were in a lot of cases already nearing or past their peak were still there 5 years later and the other is that Souness bought (and overpaid for) replacements who largely were not in eth same class as those they replaced.

 

I have never been of the opinion that Souness destroyed the squad, after all he only let go those who didn't want to stay, but he diluted it massively by buying up any old shoite who was the tabloid flavour of the month. It was like I imagine a spending spree by Voronin and his missus to be - loads of cash splashed about but no quality or class discernible in any of the purchases.

 

I think he probably made a bob or two buying players using certain agents, much like Boumsong years later. Less publicity about that sort of thing pre Bosman

 

Fair play to him with the local lads, though. Back when they were actually worth a start. The academy's done brilliantly...

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I agree, I think the writting was on the wall at the end of KK era and Souy tried to change it all too quickly. but he did buy some right ole s**** too..

 

he was an awesome player... but he should not have taken the money from the rag.

 

Agree with all that but I also think its important to note the number of times he has apologised for it and his failings as Liverpool manager. For such a plainly proud man that must take some doing.

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Buying Julian D!cks - reason: 'He's a man,' said Souey - was hard to take. The squad was so weakened by injuries at one point a paper printed a rumour that Souey was considering registering himself as a player. But he did, as has been said, inherit an ageing (and in some cases increasingly jaded) squad, and on top of that he had to deal with a new quota system for European matches, which really caused some chaos at certain points, so he did come at a very bad time.

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But he still got rid of Beardsley a couple of seasons too soon, imo.

 

A couple? He was still playing great 5 years later

Still though, Dean Saunders was ace

Edited by johngibo YPC

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A couple? He was still playing great 5 years later

Still though, Dean Saunders was ace

 

Yeah, I thought Saunders was a decent player but he came in to et team at ethrong time. We largely played with the front men playing with their backs to goal back then, and he was one of those 'break through from a deeper position, run on to the ball bang it in the net' type of players. When he joined, Digger, probaby the only player we had who could have supplied those kind of balls, was out for months so he never got the kind of service he thrived on - and the players that he was left with meant he didn't/couldn't play his natural game. Neither the club's nor Souey's nor Saunders' fault - just one of those things.

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Yeah, I thought Saunders was a decent player but he came in to et team at ethrong time. We largely played with the front men playing with their backs to goal back then, and he was one of those 'break through from a deeper position, run on to the ball bang it in the net' type of players. When he joined, Digger, probaby the only player we had who could have supplied those kind of balls, was out for months so he never got the kind of service he thrived on - and the players that he was left with meant he didn't/couldn't play his natural game. Neither the club's nor Souey's nor Saunders' fault - just one of those things.

 

 

This

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I've always felt Kenny had significant culpability in our decline due to insufficient forward planning and the age of the squad he left behind.

 

Souness had no choice but to change things. He tried to change too much too fast, though and made too many poor buys.

 

 

He is more tainted for taking money form the rag and selling out to them. What a player he was, though.

 

Hillsborough took it's toll on Kenny. He was a broken man by 1991. I think had he taken the 6 months off and come back that he could have got us back on course. Beardsley didn't need to go so soon, nor did Houghton.

 

To be fair to Souness, the injury situation he experienced in his early months was unbelievable.

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Hillsborough took it's toll on Kenny. He was a broken man by 1991. I think had he taken the 6 months off and come back that he could have got us back on course. Beardsley didn't need to go so soon, nor did Houghton.

 

To be fair to Souness, the injury situation he experienced in his early months was unbelievable.

 

 

Lots of rumours at the time about someone shagging someone elses wife being behidn the reason Beardsley left. Totally unsubstantiated to this day, of course, so remiss to repeat them.

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