Posts tagged ‘Liverpool’

August 4, 2010

Liverpool squatter joins ownership race

Bill Hack chief football correspondent

The battle for ownership of Liverpool football club has intensified after stadium burger seller and long-time Anfield resident Terry George launched a bid for the club under squatter’s rights.

American owners Tom Hicks and George Gillette are currently considering an offer from a billionaire Chinese businessman, which could wipe out the club’s debts and transform them into one of the richest teams in the world.

But the deal potentially worth £350milllion could be scuppered by a claim from 78-year-old Mr George, who has lived in the stadium for the last 60 years.

Mr George has filed a claim under squatter’s rights convention and hopes to take control of the world-famous club in time for the new Premier League season.

Although, he refused to speculate on how much money would be available for manager Roy Hodgson to invest in the playing squad, Mr George did insist no expense would be spared in building new toilets at the Kop End immediately.

“I’ve been coming to Anfield since I were a young lad,” Mr George told SportingBalls.

“Then one day after a game against United I got lost in all the crowds, you cold say I drowned in a sea of people. I couldn’t find my Dad or the way out. By the time I found the exit it was all locked up. So I settled down in a storeroom and have live there ever since.

“Of course it was upsetting losing my family like that but I never had to pay for a ticket ever again.”

He continued: “After a couple of years, I thought it was time to get a job and I’ve slipping burgers at ‘Terry’s half-time tucker’ for nearly 58 years now.

“The close season is always a bit of a slog. But there is a big gang of us who live in the stadium – some of the merchandise sellers, the groundsmen and even Kenny Dalglish. And we have some cracking 10v10 matches under the floodlights when the crowds have gone home.

“It’ll be a bit of a jump from burger seller to club owner but I’ve missed out on a few promotions over the years and I guess this is the reward.”

Former Liverpool ballboy Steve Journeyman said: “That’s what the fans want, one of their own running the club.

“He may not have the money to buy superstars or even Paul Konchesky but he is Liverpool through-and-through and that is what the fans want. We don’t need billions of pounds to compete with the best teams in Europe. We need passion. Brilliant!”

June 4, 2010

Liverpool Blow Budget On ‘Transfer Coup’

Bill Hack Chief football correspondent

Liverpool are today celebrating a “massive transfer coup” after blowing their entire transfer budget on £6million man Rafa Benitez – in what the club are hailing as the ‘severance of the season’.

Benitez was sacked yesterday after one of moment of magic – winning the 2005 Champions League Final – and six years of mediocrity as Liverpool manager.

The “massive transfer coup” cost a staggering £6million – the entirety of Liverpool’s summer spending budget – and the club confirmed they would not be making any more signings or sackings this year.

But the club declared it was more than satisfied with their summer business, describing it as “one of the great severances of recent times”.

“It is entirely true we have no money left,” a club spokesman told SportingBalls. “I could not even lend you a fiver.

“In fact, we didn’t have the money before making this gamble, but sometimes an opportunity presents itself and you just have to take it.

“It is a great piece of business for the club and supporters should excited by what it will bring to the team.

“Six million is an astonishingly good figure for such a massive transfer coup and people are going to look back on this as one of the great severance of recent times.

“The bloke ate six millions worth per season at the post match buffet.”

Liverpool assured anxious fans that they would talk to some of the “best managers” in the game, before appointing the cheapest and easiest option Kenny Dalglish.

With the club demanding a thrifty individual who is accustomed to penny-pinching, the Scottish-scouse fits the bill perfectly.

Star player Steven Gerrard admitted Benitez’s departure could be a “massive weight off” with the former manager having insisted on him carrying the team for the past five seasons as penance for beating him at chess in 2005.

Benitez is said to be considering hanging up his joke-shop goatee and glasses and going back to his routes – around Europe as a lorry driver importing and exporting vegetables.

* This story is constructed from fiction

May 7, 2010

Premiership fixtures declared “no-pointers”

Benitez: "What's the point?"

Bill Hack Chief football correspondent

Premiership managers have lined up ahead of the last day of the season to declare their final fixtures “no-pointers”.

The final round of the 2010/11 Premier League is set to get under way at 4pm on Sunday – but more than half of the managers have described their matches as inconsequential, unimportant and trivial.

And there is mounting pressure on the Premier League not to bother awarding points for the fixtures – apart from the four meaningful matches.

This would balance out the number of unscheduled “six-pointers” earlier in the season.

“There is no doubt about it – our match with Hull is a cast-iron no-pointer,” said Benitez.

“It’s not a ‘must-win’, ‘six-pointer’ or even a ‘ need to get a result’. It is simply rank no-pointer.”

Meanwhile Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini has called for his side’s match with West Ham to be upgraded to a six-pointer.

“If we can only persuade the Premier League and West Ham to declare it a six pointer then we could still qualify for the Champions League!”

If the Premier League, as now looks likely, do decide to withhold all points for those matches, Skysports will be contractually obliged to downgrade ‘Super Sunday’ to ‘Run of the mill Sunday’.

Such measures would invoke a strict limit on shouting, sensationalism, superlatives and alliteration during their coverage as well as a ban on Andy Gray.

It will be another blow for the company who have been charged a number of times in the past for ‘false advertising’ regarding their ‘Super Sunday’ products.

In one of the meaningless fixtures Everton, stranded in eight place, play Portsmouth, who are already relegated, and the Toffees manager is unequivocal in his indifference to the match.

“To be honest I can’t guarantee we will turn up,” he told SportingBalls.

“What’s the point – there is no point. Life is a no-pointer.”

April 30, 2010

New manager tops Benitez’s wishlist

Benitez calls for changes

By Bill Hack Chief Football Correspondent

Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez has admitted it could take five new signings to turn Liverpool into trophy challengers once more – a new manager, owner, striker, defender and midfield-quartet.

Benitez’s men were knocked out of the semi-finals of the Europa Cup last night on away goals to Atletico Madrid – compounding a poor season for the Reds.

“I will always defend the players,” he said. “The art of good management is not to criticise your players, even when they are clearly the ones at fault and it is nothing to do with the inspirational foreign manager.

“Having said that we have to make some changes because they are rubbish. Whoever signed them is an idiot and needs to get some new glasses because they are crap.

“But we only need to make a few changes – a new striker, a new defender and a new midfield will suffice. If a squad became available then we would have to look at that.

“While we are at it, it would be great to bring in a new owner and some sort of coach to find some good players to buy, prepare them for games, select the right ones and tell them what to do during game situations.

“But it will be difficult because apparently someone spent all the money on Glen Johnson and Alberto Aquilani.”

Last night injury forced Dirk Kuyt – known as one of the best defensive-wingers around but not a natural striker – to play up front and the attacking Johnson to fulfil a full-back role.

The lack of a creative midfielder was also evident again last night with Alberto Aquilani – despite the rumours of his inclusion – once again failing to turn up following his summer transfer.

But, despite the recent disappointments, Benitez maintained that his side still remained on course to achieve their priority with success in the Premier League.

“People forget that with only a few games to go the Premier League title is still in our hands,” said the Spaniard.

“If we lose to Chelsea – Manchester United do not win the title. If we beat Chelsea we deny Chelsea the title and, as a bonus, get to keep our pride.

“Plus we are still on course for a top-six finish and that vital qualification into the Europa Cup next season. That is not too bad.”

* This story was constructed from 99% fiction

March 19, 2010

Benitez ignores accusations of ignoring people

Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez is refusing to comment on accusations by squad member Albert Riera that he is ‘uncommunicative’.

Riera, a flakey winger signed for £8million from Espanyol, was suspended by the club after critising the Liverpool manager for leaving him out of the team and then refusing to talk to him – ever again.

Asked if he was distant and aloof, Benitez shrugged his shoulders, raised his eyebrows and walked away to his private ivory tower.

Riera, visibly distraught at Benitez’s treatment of him, revealed that the Liverpool boss ‘never called anymore’, ‘rarely saw him’ and often ‘dropped him by text’ – sometimes in preference of Ryan Babel.

“It was so hurtful,” he said. “He just began to ignore me, no words of encouragement, no ‘wow that was amazing’ Alberto, no ‘you’re better than Ronaldo’, no ‘you’re the greatest player I’ve ever seen’ – nothing. He just said nothing to me.”

Later allies of Benitez rallied in his support of the world famous Liverpool manager and stressed that he is ‘simply a shy soul’.

Riera is now suspended from all first-team activities including team-bonding sessions until next week – though it remains unclear when the ban actually began.

And with so much free time now in his calendar, Riera has indicated that he is considering taking up football.

The tall and slender Spaniard admitted that he had never had time for hobbies with his hectic schedule of sitting in stands up and down the country during the weekends and acting as a goal post during weekday training sessions – his absence has left Liverpool with a massive void and are said to be searching for a player to act as a left upright alongside right upright Ryan Babel and cross bar David Ngog.

And Riera is now thinking of in ‘some kind of weekend football – may be in some kind of league’.

* Elements of this story are entire fiction

January 4, 2010

Big Freeze hits Big Four

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson is the latest of the Big Four bosses to complain his side have been adversely affected by the arctic conditions that are crippling the country at present.

The Scot, who is accustomed to a chilly reception wherever he goes, watched on in disbelief as his side froze against Leeds in the FA Cup at the weekend.

“I was so shocked,” said Ferguson. “When they went onto the pitch they were fine. But when the game started they just froze, everyone one them in front of my eyes. It was like visiting Madame Tussauds at the North Pole.”

United defender Wes Brown was due to start on the sidelines but was a late call up to the starting XI and his lack of preparation and acclimatisation was immediately apparent.

By virtually Leeds’ first attack, the United defender had been turned into a statue and Jermaine Beckford blazed past him with ease to scored Leeds’ opener.

Ferguson desperately attempted to revive his team at half time with the famed hairdryer treatment. But the intense heat from his throbbing forehead and burning brow could not thaw United’s top performers. With time running out, Ferguson unleashed his verbal flamethrower, spitting ferociously in the face of his high-paid stars. But it was to no avail. He even lit a bomb under Dimitar Berbatov, but the Russian remained motionless and they all had to be wheeled out on for the second half on trolleys.

“Who needs banana skins when conditions are this precarious? We were all ways going to slip on our arse,” said Ferguson.

It is a problem the Big Four have been afflicted by in recent months with Arsenal and Chelsea also freezing at crucial moments this season. Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal have regularly come a cropper on the road.

But the saddest story of all is Liverpool. With many of their squad more accustomed to warmer climbs, Liverpool have been caught cold on numerous occadions this season.

Early season cold snaps did irreversible damage to the club, leaving severe trauma and internal complications beyond even the best match-winning surgeons. With Rafa ‘the brain’ Benitez not functioning effectively the club considered amputation, but with two American cowboys in charge they decided to hope for a miracle. Even cosmetic surgery was beyond the cash-strapped, frost-bitten club.

And despite desperate efforts to revive the famous club, Liverpool’s season was pronounced dead just before the holiday period began. They left thousands of grieving fans and several mediocre memories.