The Liver Bird  

Sunday, 31 July 2011

"The Liver Bird" 21 Questions


Hi folks, I just thought it would be a good idea to do a little blogger Q&A to help you learn a bit more about The Liver Bird and about me the author. If you've read my "About Me" section and follow me on Twitter then you'll already know the basics but I figured it would be a nice little post to fill up the gaps what with us all waiting for the football season to fully start!

So here goes...

1) Blogging since...

September 2009.

2) Was there any event, incident or anecdote in your life that pushed you to start blogging?

I'd just finished my A Levels and had a lot more spare time on my hands. I'd always been a fan of reading blogs, especially about Liverpool, loved trawling through the forums too and eventually figured, why don't I give it a shot?

3) Did you follow any blog before creating yours?

I didn't really follow any as I wasn't publicly signed up to any site that allowed me to do so but I often read blog posts after Google searches.

4) What is the reason behind the name of your blog?

Well of course firstly, The Liver Bird is a symbol of Liverpool football club, it also was a play on the fact that I am a female blogger and a lot of men, especially football fans use the nickname "bird" for the ladies.

5) Do your family and friends know about your blog?

They do. To be honest I don't think half of them realise how involved I am now in making sure I get posts up on time but all my friends know and my fella. Most of my family know but I'm pretty sure my Mom and Dad don't even know what blogging is!

6) Favorite time of the day to write posts?

Usually afternoon/tea time. I don't mind writing at night but I'm never as focused and I always if possible try to sleep after a result so i can clear my head and not be too bias, especially if the result was a bad one.

7) Longest hiatus between posts?

I don't actually know, I'm pretty sure I've never left it longer than 2 weeks since starting.

8) Have you set any goal about your blog? Anything you want to achieve with it?

I have no real goal no, I'm already amazed at how well my ramblings on my beloved football club have been received. I just truly enjoy blogging, it keeps me occupied and i love hearing peoples opinions and thoughts after a game, my blog is just one way I spark up those conversations.

9) Do you believe it has some kind of social function?

I wouldn't describe my blog as being a social "function" no but I do try to write in a sociable way so that anyone reading can flow through it at ease, it's more of a chat than an in depth report usually.

10) What would put an end to your blog?

I hope to keep it going as long as possible, in terms of the near future there isn't any real reason as to why I should or would have to stop, college and university work may start taking up a lot more of my time but I'm pretty sure I can set aside an hour or so to update.

11) Do you have or consider having more than one blog?

No, I only have this blog, Liverpool is one of the only things in life I think I could blog about really, most other things I'm interested in I have people around me who are also interested in that subject. With Liverpool it's different, I struggle where I live to find people I can have a real conversation with about the football club I'm so passionate about, so my blog really is a way to vent my opinions. Plus, having two blogs would take far too much of my life away!

12) You follow more a) personal blogs, b) news blogs, c) thematic blogs.

I'd say a).

13) You tell yourself you need to a) "post/comment less", b) "post/comment more", c) "post less, comment more", d) "post more, comment less".

I'd say b) post/comment more, I don't comment any where near as much as I should but then again I don't receive too many comments, usually people tweet me their thoughts. I also would like to try to post some more but usually I just stick to the routine of previews and reports.

14) Have you ever stepped back and deleted things after posting?

I don't think so, no.

15) Have you refused to publish any comment? Why?

No, comments do not have to have my approval at the moment.

16) Has Twitter changed anything about your blogging habits?

I signed up to Twitter shortly after I created my blog and I can safely say without it my blog would have crashed and burned. In terms of changing my blogging habits, it hasn't. I think Twitter as a micro blog and running a full blog are two things that go hand in hand together.

17) Has Facebook changed anything about your blogging habits?

No, I keep my Facebook personal, I have a Facebook fan page for the blog but that doesn't affect my habits really apart from having to post my new updates there.

18) Do you ever wonder if you're disclosing too many personal details?

No, my blog doesn't really require me to post personal details.

19) Do you feel like a blog star?

No, but I do feel privileged to have so many wonderful readers and followers!

20) Do you conceive blogging without the help of Google Images or YouTube?

I think most bloggers use those tools, even though some don't like to admit it.

21) Have you lied in this questionnaire?

No, what would be the point in that?

If you would like to ask a question about The Liver Bird then please feel free to tweet me, anyone new to blogging and looking for tips and tricks too, never hesitate to ask, I'll always do my best to help!

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Friday, 29 July 2011

Reds Lacklustre In Turkey Friendly

Dalglish perhaps felt his side could have performed better...

Daglish's side fell to a 3-0 defeat in the humid Turkish capital tonight. The 90 minutes were certainly no delight for Liverpool and despite substitutions, the Reds struggled from the onset to threaten Galatasaray.

Stewart Downing, Charlie Adam and Jordan Henderson were left out of the trip to Istanbul but keeper Doni got another chance to show what he can do between the sticks. A mixed line up saw the likes of Joe Cole and Philip Degen in midfield, Flanagan and Kyrgiakos in defence and Andy Carroll chosen to start up front.

Galatasaray didn't take long at all to make clear their intentions, to the soundtrack of a raucous new home stadium the boys from Turkey were nearly off the mark in less than a minute courtesy of Milan Baros.

And it eventually fell to the ex Liverpool man to deliver the first blow. Some poor Liverpool defending after Kelly and Kyrgiakos were dragged out of position meant the Czech could put a neat little chance past Doni.

Liverpool appeared unable to complete collections of passes let alone attack with real danger, it was slow for the away side and chances were focused on unsuccessful crosses which even with gallant efforts from Carroll could not be converted.

Galatasaray scored their second just before half time. Once again Milan Baros found himself in enough space to put his close range header into the back of the net.

Brad Jones, Alberto Aquilani and Dirk Kuyt were brought on in the second half. Immediately i think the work rate we know and love from Dirk Kuyt added a major difference and so too the skill and vision of Aquilani.

Stronger in the second half Liverpool managed to get the upper hand over the home side in terms of possession but attacks on goal were still sparse. An Andy Carrol effort from inside the box was perhaps the most promising but Liverpool could not get on the score sheet.

It was left to striker Elmander to finish off the game for Galatasaray after he netted a fantastic volley to take their tally to three.

With Valerenga up next in Oslo it is sure to be a solemn occasion after the terrible events in Norway. After this Liverpool welcome Valencia to Anfield and then the season gets under way.

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Sunday, 24 July 2011

Reds Lose 3-0 In Hull Friendly

Aquilani sporting the new third strip...

After goals galore in Asia it was a wake up call for the Liverpool lads this afternoon at the KC Stadium. On display for Liverpool were all three new signings, goalkeeper Doni and midfielders Downing and Henderson.

Dalglish once again made the most he could out of his bolstered squad and 22 players featured within the 90 minutes. Unfortunately for Liverpool, no amount of reshuffling could stop Hull's momentum.

Goals from Koren, Simpson and Brady meant it would take a gallant effort from the Reds to get back into the game.

Happy of the game time more than anything though i think players such as Coady and Ayala relished their opportunity in front of the boss and once again proved how our youths are beginning to shine.

Many highlighted Aquilani's first half performance in their post match thoughts. He impressed against Guangdong and it was pleasing to see him follow through on that performance against a strong Championship side.

Rumours this week suggest that Aquilani's agent is adamant he will be staying with Liverpool and I for one would not say no to having the Italian as an option next season.

Out of all the new signings i think it's fair to say Stewart Downing stood out, some flashes from the ex Aston Villa player whetted Kopites appetites as we draw closer and closer to the start of the season.

All in all a slightly disappointing performance but once again some positives to take from the game. Next up for Dalglish's boys is a trip to Turkey for a match against Galatasaray.

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Friday, 22 July 2011

Past Players: Volume 5 - John Barnes

I was 8 years old when John Barnes parted ways with Liverpool, for this reason i don't remember too much of the Jamaican born winger but my first memory of Barnes was watching a countdown of footballing moments programme with my Dad.


That famous moment in 1984 when John Barnes weaved through the Brazilian defence like it wasn't even there will forever amaze me, no matter how many times i replay the You Tube video. His skill in the final third at the Maracana Stadium was more like a silky smooth section of the macarena. I still struggle to this day to find many goals that live up to the calibre of that one.

So let's find out a bit more about the man they all called "Digger"...

The Basics
Full Name: John Charles Bryan Barnes
Nickname: Digger
Date Of Birth: 7th November 1963
Born in: Jamaica, Kingston
Height: 5'11"
Position: Winger

Watford

Barnes began his professional football career down South. After being spotted playing for a non league side he was given the chance to play for Watford reserves. He must have impressed as he was signed in July 1981. The fee paid for the soon to be Liverpool starlet? A set of football shirts.

Under manager Graham Taylor, Barnes made his debut at the age of 17. In the midst of Watford's climb up the leagues Barnes would become a key player in the side that got promoted to the first division.

Barnes played 223 times for Watford from 1981-1987 and scored a total of 65 league goals.

Liverpool

King Kenny was the man who brought John Barnes to Liverpool for a fee of £900,000. Barnes made his debut for Liverpool in August 1987, a match at Highbury which saw the Reds beat Arsenal 2-1.

It didn't take long for King Kenny's new signing to get off the mark either, to Dalglish's delight Barnes scored in September in a victory over Oxford United. A total of 15 goals were netted by Digger in his first season, only John Aldridge could boast a higher tally at the club.

Like several players and managers covered in this feature on the blog, John Barnes was one of the squad members at the time of the Hillsborough Disaster. John took the time to attend the hospital and see the injured, he also tried to help comfort the families of the victims and attended funerals after 96 Liverpool fans lost their lives.

In 1990, the last time Liverpool won the title, Barnes was a vital component in the side. He scored 22 goals from the wing that season. When considering that striker Ian Rush only managed 18 in the same time, that's an accolade to behold. Getting over 20 goals a season is a hard enough feat nowadays for prolific strikers, let alone a winger.

In 1992 Barnes suffered an Achilles injury. At the time most looked at it as nothing to worry about but what would follow is the slow deterioration of the magic midfielder we'd come to love.

Barnes left Liverpool in 1997, after 407 appearances and 108 goals in a Red shirt, it was a sad day for Liverpool fans to see him go.

Newcastle United

Deja Vu? King Kenny threw Barnes a lifeline again and signed him for his new side Newcastle. I think both men knew Barnes wasn't the player he once was but the King realised he was still capable of doing a job.

Barnes scored 6 goals in 27 league appearances for Newcastle and also reached the 1998 FA Cup final with the North East side.

Charlton Athletic

Barnes signed for his last club in 1999, a short spell at Charlton and no goals scored saw him included in a team that was unfortunately relegated. Barnes retired after 20 years of playing football.

England

Of course, with John Barnes being born in Jamaica he had the opportunity to represent his country of birth or the country he had lived in most of his life. Barnes made the decision to represent England and made his debut under Bobby Robson in 1983.

The goal against Brazil highlighted in the opening of this post gave Barnes worldwide fame. Many people still put that goal up there for the best individual goal, ever.

Barnes played his last game for England in 1995 in the game where the Colombian goalkeeper made the "Scorpion Kick Save".

He made 79 appearances for England and scored 11 goals.

Managerial/Coaching Career

Celtic

You'd think these two had got sick of each other by now but King Kenny once again was back and as Manager of Celtic at the time, Dalglish appointed Barnes as his head coach. His time at Celtic unfortunately didn't last very long and Barnes' first experience in the dugout not as a player was a forgettable one.

Jamaica

In 2008 Barnes became Manager of Jamaica. Surely chuffed to bits with the chance to manage his country of birth, Barnes managed to use his adrenaline to send Jamaica to victory in the Caribbean Championships.

Despite a decent run as manager of Jamaica, John Barnes had hinted in interviews that if the chance to manage at club level arose, it would be something he would like to return to England to do.

Tranmere Rovers

In mid 2009 it was confirmed John Barnes would be manager of Tranmere Rovers. With ex Liverpool player Jason McAteer as his right hand man, it was an interesting mix for the North West side.

After a poor start of just two wins from eleven games however, Barnes was sacked.

Racism & Rapping

Within his footballing career many people forget the struggle that John Barnes had to deal with on a day by day basis. Racism in football was still rife in the 80s/90s and Barnes had to suffer mindless abuse from fans on several occasions. The photo below portrays Barnes casually kicking away a banana skin which was thrown at him in a match against Everton.


Barnes never let the sickening taunts get to him and was one of the first role models in footballs fight against racism.

Barnes also famously rapped on both The Anfield Rap and World In Motion. Two football songs which you can still find in a flick through the music channels now.

Personal Life

John Barnes has been married twice, his first marriage to a lady called Suzy who he has four children with. He is now married to Andrea and has two daughters and a son with her.

He has teamed up with footballing friends Luther Blisset and Les Ferdinand and founded "Team 48 Motorsport" which helps racing drivers from an Afro-Caribbean background.

Barnes has delved into the world of presenting and has had parts as a pundit on ITV, Five, ESPN and LFC TV.

His charity work involves work for Save The Children who he is an ambassador for.

Some may have spotted him on Strictly Come Dancing where he was given a score of 10 for his salsa moves in 2007.

Honours

Watford
FA Cup 83/84

Liverpool
League Titles 87/88, 89/90
Charity Shield 88/89, 89/90, 90/91(shared)
FA Cup 88/89, 91/92
League Cup 94/95

Other
Appointed Member of the order of the British Empire in 1998.
English Football Hall Of Fame.


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Saturday, 16 July 2011

Liverpool Score Six In Malaysia

Charlie Adam gets off the mark for Liverpool...

It was another game filled with goals for Liverpool in the impressive stadium in Kuala Lumpar. Filled to the rafters with Liverpool fans, i think the Malaysia XI may have felt a bit small.

Kenny Dalglish was missing from the sidelines as he's home sorting out the the small matter of Stewart Downing. Also this week we've waved goodbye to Paul Konchesky. Good luck getting along with his Mom Leicester!

Anyway...

Liverpool got off the mark with a Charlie Adam penalty. His first goal in a Red shirt was delayed slightly after being forced to take his penalty again. He put both in the back of the net and sent Liverpool on their way. A soft penalty decision i thought but never mind ay?

Malaysia XI equalised shortly after with a super free kick from their captain, Brad Jones could do little to stop it.

Ngog went on to score twice in the second half. His first after a little bit of luck when the Malaysian defence had a lapse of concentration and a nice strike for his second.

Maxi Rodriguez jumped onto the scoreboard after sliding in to score Liverpool's 4th. Liverpool were looking strong but in similar fashion to the friendly against Guangdong, the opposition appeared to find their feet.

Two goals from Safee Sali put the scoreline on a tentative 4-3 to Liverpool. It did at one stage look like the Reds were going to throw away their lead. Thankfully Maxi had other ideas and with a nice header from a Dirk Kuyt cross got Liverpool a fifth goal.

Dirk Kuyt after creating the fifth made sure he got in on the action, pinging in Liverpool's 6th and final goal in what was an action packed second half.

For the Reds next it's off to Singapore for a training session and a chance for the fans over there to see their beloved players. Then it's back to England and the rather short trip in comparison to the KC Stadium.

As far as friendlies go it's looking pretty good for Liverpool. The youth in the set up have been impressive. New signing Charlie Adam appears to be settling in and even players who have been absent for months i.e. Aquilani and Insua look like they never left.

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Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Win In China & Stewart Downing

Conor Coady's strike gave Liverpool their third goal...

Liverpool today got their pre season off to a winning start with a game that had goals galore. It was an action packed match in the far East and Guangdong provided more excitement than most predicted.

Kenny Dalglsih had the opportunity to parade several players including youngsters Wisdom and Coady, plus new signing Charlie Adam.

The Reds were without a few familiar faces namely Reina and Gerrard who are both recovering from injuries and also our South American friends Suarez and Lucas were occupied elsewhere with the slight matter of the Copa America.

It was absolutely fantastic to see Aquilani back in a Red shirt and with the mixture of talent available to Dalglish i don't think anyone would have predicted the first goalscorer.

Poulsen of all players and with a volley connected off a Joe Cole piece and put Liverpool 1-0 up. David Ngog fancied a piece of the action shortly afterwards and slid home a second for the travelling side.

A watchful Dalglish on the sidelines wearing some dashing spectacles (why does he need glasses in China but not at Anfield?... Answers on a postcard) appeared very pleased with his sides performance thus far.

Just before half time Guangdong got themselves in on the action and Ricardo put one in the net to the joy of the fans packed in the stadium not only to see their home team, but to gaze at the Liverpool starlets.

In the second half Liverpool capitalized on a somewhat steady first 45 minutes. It was up to Coady to get the third goal and a fantastic shot from a way out fizzled past the keeper and into the net. Attempts to hide his obvious elation were soon released with a massive smile when congratulated by fellow youngster Andre Wisdom.

A close range finish from Andy Carroll topped off the scoring for the Reds. Despite going on to win, a lack of concentration in the dying minutes saw Lin and Hongbo score for the Chinese side. An unsuspected scoreline of 4-3 ended Liverpool's first ever game on Chinese soil.

Back home this evening I'm sure some midfielders on tour with Liverpool will be worrying about their certainties of a place within the team as it has been revealed that Liverpool have agreed a fee for Stewart Downing.

Probably in the region of £20million i do feel the price tag is slightly high but in all honesty the signing of Downing excites me. It's great to see action from within Anfield in the transfer window.

Here's to the recouping of some more cash from getting rid of some of the dead wood lying around (ahem Konchesky and the like) and hopefully some more purchases this summer for Liverpool!

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Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Deal Agreed For Charlie Adam

CA: "I put this suit on just for you... and check the belt buckle." KD: "Hahaha, you should nae have bothered lad."

It's been a long time coming but the rumours surrounding Blackpool player Charlie Adam and Liverpool FC have finally been cleared up. Last night it was Stewart Downing dominating the tweets but after Aston Villa apparently rejected the £15million offer from Liverpool attentions turned elsewhere.

The 25 year old was linked strongly with Liverpool in the January transfer window but the deal never came to fruition. Believed to be in the region of £8 - 9million  the second deal of the window for Liverpool appears to suggest that Dalglish and co are trying to revamp the midfield. With exits in that area of the pitch also highly anticipated it is good to see some action in the window.

Dalglish will surely be raring to go with the Scottish midfielder and with the Asia Tour getting closer and closer it would be nice to see Adam alongside Henderson for Liverpool so we can get an idea of what they have to offer.

I have to be honest, unlike some people who think he's exactly what we need i have some minor doubts. I just think he's over rated and it could be a case of a small fish in a big pond. Don't get me wrong he's put in some cracking performances in a Blackpool shirt and by miles was their best player but I'm not fully convinced he'll do the same in a red shirt. I am however fully behind him and hope he proves me wrong!

Charlie Adam - Welcome To Anfield

What do you think about the Charlie Adam signing?

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Monday, 4 July 2011

Kevin Keen Joins Liverpool Staff

He's not a player but it's still another signing for Liverpool...

Appointed as first team coach the experienced 44 year old has put his signature at the end of a contract which ties him to Anfield for 3 years. The timing was perfect as the Liverpool team came back to training at Melwood today so Kevin has jumped feet first into his new role.

Kevin has also worked with Steve Clarke who Dalgish appointed recently. The pair had a long spell together in the West Ham coaching staff so the appointment was surely a well thought out one as our new owners and Kenny look to reshape Liverpool from root to tip.

Kevin's arrival allowed Sammy Lee to leave Anfield after the assistant manager and the club agreed on mutual consent it was time for the ex Liverpool player to move on.

Whilst Liverpool fans will be pleased with the progress in reshaping the coaching staff, after the signing of Jordan Henderson, it has been very quiet in the transfer window, now fully open will we see some super buys brought in so Kevin Keen can give them the run around at Melwood?

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