Liverpool End 09/10 Season With A Draw
My player of the season for Liverpool...
It wasn't a superb end to the campaign nor was it necessarily entertaining and although it was disappointing, it just didn't seem relevant in the midst of the managerial uncertainty and financial situation currently faced by the football club we all hold so dear.
There were some positives to highlight but whist Chelsea were banging in 8 against Wigan and United still managed to net 4 against Stoke despite the fact they missed out on the title, it was another example pointing out the ever increasing gap between Liverpool and the current battle-axes at the top of the table.
Going into the game Liverpool were already aware that the best possible finish in sight was 6th, this was also providing that the Aston Villa result went their way, with that in mind, the lads had that and the prospect of finishing on a high note as the incentives.
It was a decent first half from Liverpool with some lively play and a few attempts at goal. Notable efforts included a fizzing shot from Moroccan Nabil El Zhar, a Dirk Kuyt header and arguably the closest we came in the match when Alberto Aquilani saw his effort clip the cross bar, unfortunately when the ball came out to Daniel Agger the defender could do nothing but send the effort wide.
Hull were also giving it 110%, players like Mendy and Jan Vennegoor Of Hesselink were providing problems for the defence and Pepe Reina. In fairness, Hull probably deserved to be ahead but Liverpool continued to hold the clean sheet.
The second half was much more gritty, both sides were getting stuck in with bad challenges and free kicks galore.
By the hour mark, Rafa decided to make his first substitution bringing Frenchman David N'Gog on to replace the lively El Zhar. N'Gog in his time featured was perhaps disappointing in front of goal but again his ability to hold up play and pass the ball made sure he added enough to the second half display.
As the minutes ticked by it was becoming quite clear that this game was destined to be goalless but obviously no side was content with that. In attempt to change things and add some fresh legs Benitez introduced starlet Pacheco and also record breaking Jack Robinson - at the age of sixteen the left back became Liverpool's youngest ever player to feature in a first team game. I'm sure we all hope to see him progress well.
And that was pretty much that, even a passionate powerful run from the captain late into the 90minutes didn't create much more than a shot just wide of goal, portraying pretty much the story of the game and in some ways the season for Liverpool and the number 8.
Finishing in 7th is obviously terrible to look at, we haven't finished as low as that since the 98/99 season, but what people need to realise is that this was already written in the stars, it was only a matter of time before a thin Liverpool squad actually finished in a league position that represented the situation.
Some people may try to blame Benitez solely, they are quite simply wrong. Some people may try to blame the Yanks solely, they are also quite simply wrong. It was a disaster of a recipe for a while and without investment, no manager will be able to turn around Liverpool's fortunes on the pitch.
With the World Cup in the summer also having fans on tenterhooks about the fitness of players like Torres, Gerrard and Mascherano it will surely be a strange summer for Liverpool fans.
The sooner we find a suitable investor the better, but even so, there is no quick fix for the situation, next season could be just as poor as this one, i'm just thankful that we managed to remain in Europe because lord only knows what could of happened, trying to attract players from abroad without the possibility of playing in Europe is more than difficult.
So let's just hope that the future holds good news for Liverpool Football Club, nobody wants a miracle, we just crave stability.
To end on, congratulations to Pepe Reina who is joint winner of the 2010 golden gloves award matching with Petr Cech for 17 clean sheets in the season.
Thanks again for reading all season folks, really enjoyed myself.
I hope to be posting about transfers in the summer, hopefully not just outgoings.
I also hope to do at least one more "Past Players" feature at some stage. You can read my other two attempts here & here.
I hope to think of some fresh ideas too, possibly considering doing a paragraph by paragraph post for each month of last season to create some sort of pocket sized season review.
Who knows, but have a lovely summer folks! And as always, feel free to pester me at www.twitter.com/LFCKirstyLFC
P.s. thanks to www.lfc-news.co.uk for teaming up with me towards the end of the season, hope to remain partners into the future.