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Discussion Starter #1
Well we all know the score; if we can win and Leeds lose or draw at Upton Park, then we have made the European Cup for the first time in 15 years. The current system is not the ideal way of getting into it, but football's changed and so be it. It's funny you know, we came third in 1998 and it was rightly considered a bad season. Coming third now would be a massive success. There are, of course, two main reasons for this. In 1998 third did not get you a place in Europe's premier competition, so now that it does you've apparently achieved something. The second reason is that after coming seventh last season, anything in the top four would have to be considered marked progress.

If things don't go our way on Sunday, in what will be a very fired up little stadium, then, as we already know we are in the UEFA Cup - a tournament which has now become a very poor relation to the big one, and will probably become obsolete like the Cup Winners Cup in a few years time. It is, however, a tournament, rather like the League Cup, that should forever hold fond affection in the hearts of Liverpool fans, given our history in it.

In the same way that I am growing tired of everyone's Ali-G impressions, the "we would have taken fourth in August" thing is also becoming weary. Whilst yes, it is true (in fact we would have taken fourth in January), you surely can't hide from these depressing last few games that have seemingly thrown that chance of European Cup football away. As a spectator have we not envied Chelsea's and United's trips to Barca, Milan, Juve and Madrid? With the whole world watching them, it's what we need back. And whilst I agree with Steven Kelly in `Through The Wind and Rain' when he says it's sad that even fans now talk about the need for big money to come into the club, it's just realism in a changing world. I don't like the fact that more and more people are choosing to communicate via e-mail and not Royal Mail (or God forbid, face to face), but it's happening, and to keep up, rather like Liverpool, you have to adapt. If not, then we stay where we are, languishing in mediocrity (ask Everton). Surely we all understand that after last summer's buys, the academy, the Heskey purchase, the need for a big squad resulting in obscene wages, the Champions League was going to be one of the more profitable ways of recouping some of that money. We know we're not good enough to win it yet - but that is all part of the learning process. It took United six years to win it (well 31 actually, but you know what I mean).

So Sunday in Bradford it is then, for the right to possibly play the world's giants. Considering City's position and the way we are playing you wouldn't actually bank on us to do our bit - irrelevant of what Leeds do. Looking very negatively at it, we could still come third with a 0-0, if Leeds lose. Although it is my belief that Liverpool's current style favours away games, more than home games. There is less pressure on all out attack and having to break down ten men defences. And given that Bradford must win, this should be the chance to break the drought. The midfield have to come forward more and contribute more offensively, and not just defensively.

Who knows what formation will be tried? I want to see Robbie and Michael together, but Heskey won't be dropped, he cost too much. I would revert back to 4-4-2 with maybe room for Murphy somewhere. Quite what has happened to Smicer, I don't know - wipe this season out Vlad, it never really got going - best of luck for next.

So whatever happens on Sunday, never forget the obvious progress L.F.C. has made in 12 months. We have genuine hopes for next season, irrespective of what particular tournaments we may or may not be playing in. And for that we thank Ged. Merci La!
 

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Great post Razor,

I would agree with you on virtually every point and it was good to see another fans view in a logical kind of way. Although all the hype of the transfers is fun I would still rather read a long post that concentrates on what is realy important and that is results. I agree that this season has been a sucess. That facr is our players got tired and the players that came back from injury were slightly too late to make a difference. Maybe it even cost us, who knows?
I don't view the Champions League as primarily money but I just want to see the pool playing the teams I think they should. It would also attract a lot of players and we all know that the Liverpool world wide fan base is massive (just check out this forum).

Versus Bradford, why we shoud win.

We have a better position in every position.
Their defence has looked shakey this season and our strike fource is way too good to continue to fire blanks.
We need this.
Their attack, on paper, should propose no threat.

Why we could lose/draw.

Bradford need this one more than we do.
Jewell is a top man who has gotten a lot out of this team.
Saunders is liable to perform and Blake is a decent player.
The pool's players are shattered.
The team has been changed more times in the past few games than since January.
God hates me!!!!!

My prediction 1-1 :( sorry guys.

As you walk, through a storm........
 

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Well I'm sure that by now everyone has had time to calm down and take in the events of Sunday afternoon. Although it didn't turn out great for Liverpool, I'd like to congratulate Leeds on their 3rd place. After the events they've had to deal with this season 3rd is a great achievement. Remember this was also David O Leary's first full season in charge, so credit to his team as well.
Even though I was dissapointed to see Liverpool lose on Sunday, I was pleased to see Bradford stay up, Jewell has been a great ambassador for the smaller sides, and he possibly deserved the manager of the year award.
Another positive thing from Sunday was Wimbledon finally going down, all I can say is it is about time!
What I did find dissapointing is that until Vlad and Camara came on, we just didn't look like getting a chance, let alone scoring! Redknapp was played out of position on the right, where Gerrard has shown he can play there.
I find something odd about the fact that Fowler wasn't even on the Bench, for a game so important surely you should have all your striking options available?
Overall a dissapointing end to an otherwise good season, and much to look forward to for next year!

Razor
 
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