End of Season 16/17 - 5 Things

Discussion in 'The Albert - LFC Talk' started by Jase, May 22, 2017.

?

Success or Fail

  1. 10

    4.5%
  2. 9

    11.9%
  3. 8

    38.8%
  4. 7

    38.8%
  5. 6

    4.5%
  6. 5

    1.5%
  7. 4

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  8. 3

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  9. 2

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  10. 1

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Jase

    Jase Well-Known Member

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    Inspired by MotD last night, TIA's usual "5 things we learned" articles and @Zinedine Biscan's end of season threads.

    5 Pros
    5 Cons
    5 Hopes (realistic things you want to see next season)

    For me:

    Pros
    1. Mane and Matip - walked straight into the first team and improved us no question
    2. The way we tore teams to bits in the first half of the season - absolute joy to watch
    3. Finishing in the ECL places
    4. Klopp looks like he's gonna be here for a long time
    5. We didn't spend jack all season so should have plenty to play with this summer

    Cons
    1. January
    2. Decent bit of February
    3. The nature of some Injuries to the likes of Ings and Mane (hopefully he comes back 100%)
    4. Karius hasn't worked out (yet), but him being there might be part of the reason Migs finished the season well (?)
    5. Not convinced we've managed to figure out how to beat park-the-bus teams when our lads are anything less than 100% motivated and fit.

    Hopes
    1. 4+ first team ready players in the transfer window
    2. Get through the ECL qualifier in August
    3. All the players who showed promise or took a step up this season build on it next year (eg Wijnaldum, Woodburn, TAA) when the chance presents
    4. 4th place minimum, which will be a tough one considering we're in Europe either way, and the number of strong teams around us
    5. United to have another "poor" season so I can facepalm at Mourinho's pressers

    How would you rate our season as a whole from 1-10 relative to your expectations.
     
  2. Zinedine Biscan

    Zinedine Biscan The patient one

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    You've probably summed up a lot of my thoughts, tbh!

    I'll try to think of some more.

    Score-wise, if you'd asked me at Christmas, I'd have given it a 10/10, finishing in the CL spots makes me tempted to give it an 8/10. However, to have started so well and then dropped away so badly, even if we saved the season on the final day... I think overall I'd rate it 7/10. Good, but room for improvement.
     
  3. Nikola

    Nikola Optimist with a bit of experience. Admin

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    I gave it an 8/10. I know, no trophies, only fourth spot but... I felt this was a huge step in the right direction, I can't fully describe my emotional charge when following the run-in as I expected us to narrowly miss out on Champions League qualifiers, especially after Mane got injured, and being a doom 'n' gloom type, I thought that would be the end of our top four hopes, as evidenced in January. I feel that, if club get their decision right and if there are no more injuries, this will be the start of real rebuild, bottom to top, hence the high mark.

    Pros:

    1) Turns out Liverpool had a good transfer window after a while. Three out of four main transfers worked to a rather good level and squaddies weren't bad. A repeat of that 75% rate wouldn't go amiss this summer!
    2) When our team was good, it was awesome. Our games were so interesting that they got the record number of broadcasts (unfortunately, our defence also played a big part in it). Hopefully our attacking prowess and dynamism improves our reputation with good players and with fans all over the world.
    3) Impressive improvement in certain players over the course of the season: Mignolet, Lovren, Milner's conversion to left back, Henderson's conversion to deep-lying midfielder, Can's return to form in the second part of the season, Wijnaldum's and Coutinho's improvement in terms of numbers... That should bode well for the future.
    4) Finishing in top four while punching well above our weight. Realistically, both Man United and Arsenal have squad depth that is much better than ours, even their youngsters are looking impressive. To finish above them, even without the added burden of European competition, is an achievement.
    5) Youngsters getting chances and securing the long term future of Academy. Gomez, Alexander-Arnold, Grujić, Ejaria and Woodburn should probably be a part of extended squad next season and that seems to be on merit.

    Cons:

    1) Squad depth - simply non-existent at times, as evidenced by our bench towards the end of the season.
    2) Injuries - is it me or are there too many of them? That said, Mane's and Coutinho's were of impact variety but niggles to Matip and Lovren cost us an established centre back partnership and probably a few points, too. Lallana might be a worry given that he's England's main man and English national team gave us quite a bit of grief in terms of mismanagement of our players, especially in pointless games. Henderson is a big question mark, I'm still not sure if it was an impact injury or something more serious.
    3) Klopp's substitutions - after being fantastic at changing games from the bench in 2015/16, Klopp was pretty reserved last season. I wonder if this had anything to do with the fact that his bench was sometimes depleted but it's not like he had Poulsen and Konchesky on it.
    4) Inability to break down deep defending teams - Conte pulled off a few masterstrokes last season in this regard, merely tactical tweaks designed to expose opponent's frailties but Klopp wasn't able to do that. Maybe with a change of system he would have had more success but that's something he'll have to ponder this summer.
    5) Another season without a trophy. One League Cup in last eleven seasons and Man United are on the verge of surpassing us in terms of trophies.

    Hopes:

    1) Buy well.
    2) Qualify for Champions League.
    3) It would be unrealistic to ask for a repeat of last season's record against top eight teams but that's exactly what I'm doing.
    4) Make better use of substitutions.
    5) Win a trophy.
     
  4. redfanman

    redfanman TIA Regular Valued Member

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    I gave a 10.

    CL qualification was what Klopp said at the start of the season was our goal and i dont think there are many fans who last summer wouldnt have taken that and a 76 point finish right then. We've done that, albeit on a wing and a prayer by the end, ahead of a side who finished with the most points for a 5th placed finish in the Premier League, yet had themselves finished 2nd last year with 4 fewer points!!

    Our 5th highest points total in the Premier League. A significant number of goals scored, and although our defense let in silly goals throughout the year, still improved on the number conceded compared with recent years.

    Plenty to look forward to next season!
     
  5. SBYM

    SBYM I'm just living the dream

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    I would have given 8.5!!

    9 seems too high, but I think we met expectations, despite (and I can't get this figure out of my head) taking just 6 points from 27 during Jan/Feb...

    6 from 27...fmd...we could have been fighting it out into the last month!!!

    So 9 it is. And @Jase summed up pretty well what I want to see, although I'd argue we closed out the season against some pretty deep defending, so here's hoping we are coming to grips with that particular tactic.
     
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  6. lfc.eddie

    lfc.eddie "¿Plata... O Plomo?" Valued Member

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    Pros:
    1. Klopp has a proper system and drilling players into knowing how to play in his system. That's what I want to see in a team.
    2. Ahead of United while spending nearly £200m lesser than them, and kicking Arsenal out of Champs League spot.
    3. We did not sell any of our top performer in the pervious season.
    4. We found a direct freekick taker.
    5. Mignolet knows how to come out for crosses.

    Cons:
    1. Matip's problem with Cameroon. We should have known about it and solved it long before.
    2. Mane's Afcon issue. We knew that is going to happen but again not ready for it, why?
    3. Due to both incidents, we dropped bucket loads of points in the month of January and then February.
    4. Lacking lethal striker. We created chances and could not bury it quite often.
    5. Defence with Lovren still lacks consistency.

    Hope:
    1. Sort out the back to make it even harder for one to score against us. We already limit teams to have chances against us, now we need to not allow them to score with 1 chance.
    2. Another pacy forward who can score shit loads of goals.
    3. Fullbacks that can attack. I think Milner didn't do that badly in the attacking front compared to Clyne who has been abysmal in the final third. He is the only outfield player that hasn't scored a damn goal in the league.
    4. Improve on points and position come next season, with at least one cup win.
    5. Progress past group stages in the Champs League to quarter finals.

    I had us on 6 points because after last season with two cup finals, I was expecting a trophy. It has been far too long since we lifted a trophy, it has now been 6 years since we win something tangible, we didn't even get to any finals. Which is why I have us on slightly above average.
     
  7. NYRhockey

    NYRhockey Well-Known Member

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    This season was a solid 8. Can't go higher because we didn't win any trophies but a terrific step in Klopp's revolution of Liverpool.

    Pros:
    - When the going got tough in Jan/Feb we didn't crumble. When we lost Mane late in the season and the world was ready to bury the team, we didn't give up. We had a fighting spirit all year long and overcame whatever obstacle got in front of us
    - The fact that there is finally a plan and we're executing to it, bringing in square pegs for square holes instead of buying for the sake of buying. Wijnaldum, Mane and Matip fitting in flawlessly and making an impact
    - Our offensive game. It is beautiful to watch
    - Qualifying for the CL
    - Klopp signing an extension

    Cons:
    - Too many games lost by our starting players. Matip, Coutinho, Hendo, Lallana and Mane all missed 10+ games. That had a big impact
    - Jan / Feb (sigh)
    - Struggles to break down teams who parked the bus. We got better at it but still something to watch for next season
    - Karius. I was big on him and still am, but with the way Migs finished the season i guess it's hard to complain
    - No trophies

    Hopes:
    - Continue to buy quality players
    - Finish 2nd/3rd place in the league
    - Make it out of CL group stage
    - Continued development of current first team players and youngsters
    - Win a trophy
     
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  8. Bob8

    Bob8 TIA Youth Team

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    This season was a 8.5 for me. We achieved the only true goal we had before the season, to finish in the champions league. Trophies will come, but for our development as a team it was so damn important to be in top4 this season. Now we are on right track with our journey to become the team we need to be to finally win the premier league. The progress the team and Klopp have done has been tremendous, and hopefully the growing pains we have seen this year will be a distant memory in the seasons to come.

    Pros:

    -The improvement we made in every aspect but most importantly the +16 points compared to last season.

    - How players like Lallana, Hendo and Migs finally made the step up to the level they need to be at, for us to compete with the very best.

    - The signings we made were excellent, Mane, Gini and Matip were absolutely terrific signings, with no penny over spent bringing them here. It could be argued that bringing in Karius finally gave us a reliable Goalkeeper in Mignolet.

    - Klopp and his staff are the best thing that has happened to our club in a very long time.

    - Manu and Arsenal finishing below us

    Cons:

    - January/February

    - Injuries

    - Defence

    - To have two starting 11 players not playing for us for a month and not being prepared for it was disappointing

    - The whole Sakho situation

    Hopes:

    - For us to continue our improvement. 80+ points next year should be the target, wherever that leaves us in the end results.

    - For us to come out of the season with a feeling that the defence certainly had improved.

    -Some cup/or European glory.

    - To have a much improved squad when the next season begins.

    - Danny Ings to have a injury free season.
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2017
  9. geebo

    geebo Bekloppt ! (German for loopy)

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    I gave 10. I dont think any manager could have done better ! (and spent as little).

    pros
    - huge point and place gain on last season !
    - Klopp - tactical genius, transfer nous, presser humour and heavy metal sideline behaviour !
    - Mane - the beast !! if he stays fit, next season he will eclipse everyone
    - The new stand !!! fuck me ! that has been a long time coming and deserves a shout !
    - The younsters - woodburn, Trent Arnold, etc. a few of the U23s look very good (prosepcts)

    cons
    - the FA and their incompetence, biasedness and general decrepit cronyistic body (not LFC but impacts us)
    - injuries
    - its funny how Jan and Feb were only so bad because Sept to Dec was so good.....
    - the Sakho saga
    -Im struggling now... er, defence....

    Hopes
    -Klopp repeats his dortmund transfer feats, and we end up with 5/6 class signings in Aug.
    - top 3 please.....
    - Wenger stays.....
    - Woodburn becomes the next Fowler....
    - CL knock out stages....
     
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  10. Hope in your heart

    Hope in your heart Loyalty and patience, two undervalued concepts... Admin

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    An excellent 7 out of 10 for me. Way better than I expected for this season, but no long cup run / no trophy is getting the mark down. A good stepping stone to hopefully genuine success to come though. :-)

    Pros
    1. The early season performances, which clearly showed Klopp's intent, how he wants his team to play in the longer term. Once we'll play in such a way and will have the players to do so through a full season, we might well become unstoppable.
    2. Klopp showed last summer that he has an eye for good players: our main incoming players Mané, Matip and Wijnaldum have proven to be permanent fixtures in the team when fit, and have improved us significantly.
    3. When the going got tough during the winter months with all the injured/absent players, Klopp found a way to adjust his tactics and, albeit in a less spectacular manner, finish the season on a high again.
    4. Improving players who were lesser players with Rodgers: Lallana, Firmino, Henderson, Coutinho, Can, Mignolet are all better players now than two years ago.
    5. Improved team-spirit and togetherness within the club. A crucial point which will hopefully help us to improve from where we stand now.

    Cons
    1. Injuries
    2. Injuries
    3. Injuries
    4. Injuries
    5. Injuries

    Hopes
    1. Getting an injury-free 17/18 season.
    2. Getting through the ECL qualifier in August and enjoying the CL again.
    3. Finding our early-season mojo back, and crushing our opponents (especially park-the-bus teams) like we did last autumn, this time during the full season.
    4. Maintaining our exceptional record against the league's top sides.
    5. Winning one, or several, or even better, all trophies at stake. :-)
     
  11. Anfield rd Dreamer

    Anfield rd Dreamer Well-Known Member

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    9 out of 10. More than 10 pros, not even 5 "half" cons and more expectations than hopes. Given up trying to write it all down though.
     
  12. Rambler

    Rambler Bootle Boy

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    Just about scraped 7/10.

    Very pleased we wrestled the 4th place cup off Arsenal but I don't really get the euphoria. After all we still have a nerve wracking play off to negotiate. The time to celebrate is when/if we get through that.

    I know modern fans don't really care about cups but for me, LFC are about winning trophies....if United win the Europa & end up with 2 cups, then they have had a much better season than us.
     
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  13. Jase

    Jase Well-Known Member

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    The majority of Man Utd fans might not agree with you, from reading RedCafe, friends and the media in general. They were poor and lucky against Saints in the ECL final. I'm expecting another lacklustre performance tomorrow against Ajax, whether they win or not., and then there's their performances in the league.

    For me, it's about where we're headed and momentum. It's clear to anyone who follows football that we're pointed in the right direction and, with Klopp at the helm, our potential is exciting. Most United fans I've spoken to or heard from are pretty pissed atm and, with Mourinho looking like he's going nowhere, don't have much to be optimistic about, regardless of the odd minor trophy here or there.
     
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  14. mattyhurst

    mattyhurst TIA Regular

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    I gave it 8, I always say 10pts improvement is the standard you should be looking for especially in Liverpool's case and places we were, we got 16pts and if it wasn't for one month and a bit we'd have easily been up with Spurs.

    I would say a further 5pts next season is what we should aim for and keep building on that.

    8/10 as we've met all our realistic targets in my view, 2pts per game is good going. Next season, Maintain CL and win a cup is probably the aim, perhaps include a target in the CL, I think we can compete, that EL run showed that and we are I believe better than that now.
     
  15. Rambler

    Rambler Bootle Boy

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    Funny how the Europa Cup is a minor trophy this season. Seem to remember it being a must win major trophy last season....
     
  16. indianscouser

    indianscouser Oh ya Beautttty!!

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    Gave 7. Klopp did a commendable job. I just wonder, if thing would have been different had we signed few players in Jan( Thats when we went out of the title race).

    Pros:
    1) Every one is capable of scoring. Goals distributed over 7-8 players which is a healthy sign that you are not over dependent on a single player.

    2)Fluid front 3. Impossible to mark Firmino,Coutinho and Mane.

    3)Possession & Closing down opposition team. We are fucking boss in keeping the ball and hunting down opposition teams defence, in your face attitude.

    4) Having grit and determination and keeping clam when the pressure was on us to finish in top 4.

    5) Massive turnaround in our goal keeping. Don't know who to give the credit, but Migs had massive role in ensuring we won critical games.

    Cons:

    1) Getting screwed over by weak teams, especially after beating top 6 teams. Frustrating as Fuck.

    2) CB chemistry very poor. Too many individual mistakes by our CB's costing us in many occasions

    3) Squad Depth. The reason why we finished 4th(not higher).

    4) Frequent Injuries to Key players : Henderson, Mane, Firmino, Coutinho, Sturridge, Matip, Lallana

    5)No real leader in pitch in absence of Henderson.

    Hopes:

    1) Sign World class players who would immediately improve our starting XI

    2) Finish in top 3 & Win a Trophy

    3) Minimum or no injuries to Key players

    4) Beat the hell out of Small teams ( no heart attack please)

    5)Improve Squad depth.
     
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  17. Jase

    Jase Well-Known Member

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    it's not the trophy itself, it's the chance to qualify for ECL if you're not in it by default. The fact that Man Utd need to win this match to save their season from being a total catastrophe is pretty funny and, by their standards, it most definitely is a minor trophy
     
  18. Etipafilaf

    Etipafilaf "If we want, this can be a real special day."

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    It's an 8. Clear improvement with room to grow. Satisfied but wouldn't use the word success to describe this season, that word is reserved for when we win a trophy (or two).

    Pros

    1. Proved we can beat anyone we stepped onto the pitch against and never looked overwhelmed by the quality of any opponent. That bodes well for the future. I love knowing top 6 teams don't like the thought of having to play us.
    2. A terrific summer window. Klopp had a plan, including how each target fit the role he wanted them to play as opposed to the role they may have played in the past, and he got the business done early. Just imagine if he had actually been able to poach Pulisic late in the window? (He went from "who is that?" to "he has a big future" in the eyes of many this season...) Klopp has a terrific eye for talent. I also love the fact he's unwilling to risk the long term for a short term goal that is not his ultimate aim.
    3. Klopp seems to love being at Liverpool. If there was such as thing as a lifetime extension, I'd want to sign him up. It's obvious that doing the best thing for Liverpool is the most important thing to Klopp, which is not something that can be said of a lot of managers.
    4. Clear improvement. 76 points, a top 4 finish, unbeaten vs Top 6... All while trying to play entertaining football.
    5. We seem to have rooted out the deflated, "here we go again" mentality that took over at times at the end of Rodgers time. Away to Swansea, home vs Chelsea, Stoke and Burnley immediately come to mind as signs that we will fight to comeback instead of act like it may not be our day.

    Cons

    1. Poor policing of the locker room. There are times when it looks like Klopp wants it more than the players. That's not ideal. For me this was the primary cause for our failings against lesser sides. The standard is the standard, so to speak. Once we reach a point where it doesn't matter who we're playing against, where or when, I'll feel better about our title chances. And that type of mindset is largely driven by leaders inside the locker room who police the squad as a whole, rooting out smaller issues and/or complacency before they can transform into a problem.
    2. For some reason we planned as if we were preparing for an eSport, not football. Injuries happen in football, thus there's no reason not to prepare for them. This was particularly odd considering we had a injury crisis last season that was so bad we had to get Steven Caulker on loan and played several important matches without Henderson, Can and Origi to name a few.
    3. The long-term season planning invited questions. Like (1) How do we end up in a situation where we can't start Firmino, our primary striker, against Stoke because he's near the red line (i.e. tired) and remained that way for the rest of the season? (2) Why not rotate more early in the season in an effort to keep everyone fresh? Particularly as that may pay dividends in terms of rhythm and confidence if those backups are called upon? Or, at least, give those players plenty of sub minutes in the early runaway victories. (3) How do we not have a better solution for Sadio's absence? And by that I mean a plan and/or system that we've tried multiple times before January so we can work the issues out beforehand.
    4. We allowed bottom half teams to think they could beat us and gave away points in the process.
    5. Mama, what were you thinking?

    Hopes

    1. Klopp does not have to police the locker room next season and we find the consistency that champions are known for.
    2. Not really a hope as much as something I expect to happen, but I'm looking forward to Klopp buying well and improving the squad. Don't care about names. Do care about how they fit in the role he is buying to address and if they enhance the squad as a unit. If he matches what he did last summer, we'll be in great shape.
    3. Compete for the Premier League title.
    4. Compete for the Champions League title.
    5. Win a trophy.
     
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  19. hugo the horrible

    hugo the horrible Ridiculously optimistic.

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    Gave it a 9.
    Missed out on 10 because of Jan.Feb,we looked a bit ordinary for a while.CL was the aim,we achieved it.
    Pros
    1 Klopp
    2 Klopp
    3.As the season progressed we started to show signs of having a defence.
    4.Started the season with a bang,looked like the sky was the limit for a while.
    5.Whether it was the signing of Karius,Manninger in the background,I don't know but Migs seemed to find himself.

    Cons.
    1.Too thin a squad,when the inevitable injuries came we started to struggle.
    2.Ings injury in particular,was looking forward to seeing this lad among the goals,next season?
    3.The international problems with a couple of the lads,one of the reasons we looked so thin early 2017.
    4.We missed Hendo badly,although Can did step up after a while.
    5.Still have trouble beating teams we should put away.

    Hopes.
    Going to struggle to keep this to 5.
    1.We use the undoubted attraction of CL to attract some quality players.
    2.With the added games we need a larger squad(too small this season,anyway).
    3.We are going to win some serious silverware.
    4.Sure it will happen,but want to see players who fit in to the club and our system.I know it will happen,as Klopp clearly has an eye for players who do that,no more players who think they are better than they are.
    5.Injuries to a minimum,and hopefully no serious season ending ones.
     
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  20. Alright Now

    Alright Now Well-Known Member

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    Pros:
    76 points is a lot of points
    Meeting team during preseason at Stanford: nothing left on my bucket list thereafter
    Players developed under Jurgen: Migs, Emre, TAA
    The new blood was mostly awesome: Supermane, Gini, Matip; and Klavan is a gentleman
    We learned to win when destiny called us again

    Cons:
    That puke green kit has destroyed my eyes
    The injuries and the youthful bench have destroyed my heart
    I had Origi down for 30 goals: he proved me a charlatan
    Lack of width without Supermane
    Would have liked to see Moreno and Karius develop

    Hopes:
    Give up 10 less goals
    Lose the tension at Anfield
    Fire everyone on NBC
    Get a VVD away jersey for Christmas
    See my first fixture at Anfield: hopefully against Real on a European night with a whole lot of you

    I absolutely enjoyed this season--cons and all. I scored the ride a 9: 8 for the pros and a bonus 1 for the thrill. And I'm so stoked, I may bump it to a 10 tomorrow.
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2017
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  21. shachart

    shachart Our greatest win

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    Before the season started, most fans had the following gosals for the season: top 4 and a domestic cup.
    We just about scraped top 4, and we got as far as semi finals in the league cup. So basically it's an easy 7 for the season.
    However, this season was all about improvement, and Klopp has done so very convincingly.

    Pros :
    1. 76 points.
    2. Mane and Matip hitting the ground running.
    3. Firmino, Lallana and Hendo. Huge improvement in form and output.
    4. Anfield main stand.
    5. Might be a bit early , but an improvement in mentality. Team able to bounce back after set backs.

    Cons :
    1. January and February.
    2. Playing bottom half teams.
    3. Loanees. With the exception of Ward and maybe Wisdom, most of the loanees had a miserable season with very little game time.
    4.Injuries. The list is endless.
    5. Origi. Had a very bad season. did not make the next step from last year, if anything went back.

    Hopes:
    1. Good quality new players.
    2. 80 points next season.
    3. CL out of group stage.
    4. Silverware ( don't care which ).
    5. Sitting in Row 7 seat 7 at the Kenny Dalglish stand.
     
  22. shootscore

    shootscore Member

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    8 points. As far as the aim, mission accomplished. Can't give not winning anything more than 8.

    pros
    1. Back on a welcome perch of sorts (4th). Though Man Utd won two trophies, we finished above them in the league.
    2. Stevie G in the 'bootroom' (2017 mix).
    3. Form against the top sides. Didn't lose, won the 'mini-league'.
    4. Boys from Brazil. Such a sheer joy at times.
    5. Simon Mignolet. Not easy to up the level, many critics, but showed real nerve and bottle. Inspiring.

    6. (Bonus track) Love the manager.

    flip side
    1. Didn't win anything.
    2. Park the bus sides cost too many points and there were prolonged times where there was any real fire against them.
    3. Home games and 12th man. Away Kop can stand proud. Home crowd - overall - can do better.
    4. In My Very Humble Opinion, handling of Sakho, who I rate.
    5. Injuries and squad depth.

    hopes
    1. silverware.
    2. consistency.
    3. squad depth.
    4. dominance.
    5. regular top 4.
     
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  23. Scott Jones

    Scott Jones Well-Known Member

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    Pros
    1.Mane hitting the floor running and being instant success.
    2.Lallana showing big improvements in stamina and movement.
    3.Mignolet.
    4.New stand and it looks amazing with the kings name.
    5.Champions League football.

    Cons
    1.Fucking bastard injuries.
    2.Goalkeeping woes.
    3.Defensive fuck ups.
    4.Origi form dipping sadly.
    5.Sakho situation.

    Hopes
    1.We get the players we want in the transfers.
    2.We do well in the CL and not get a group of death.
    3.A better injury record.
    4.One of the domestic cups.
    5.To be able not to shit myself every time we're playing.

    :well done:
     
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  24. Jase

    Jase Well-Known Member

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    Any "big" teams who get US in their group will think it's the group of death for sure.

    Can't help you with that one.. we're all in the same boat. Maybe a change of shirt sponsor?

    [​IMG][/QUOTE]
     
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  25. OhYaBeauty

    OhYaBeauty Mamadou Sakho Fan Club Chairman

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    I went for an 8. 10 is perfect. 9 is very good. We didn't win any trophies so it can't be either of those but it was still very good. I also don't exactly get the inclusion of "January" as a con. We played like shit in January but it's not January's fault. It's a result of a lack of squad depth, AFCON, and the team losing form.

    Pros
    • Champions League qualification and EFL Cup progression: The main goal for the season was to finish in the Champions League places. Mission accomplished. There were stumbles along the way, and we certainly could have finished better than fourth given the way Arsenal, United, and City all struggled through the season, but Klopp had a clear goal for the season and we accomplished it. Additionally, we did progress in the EFL Cup and had a good showing despite starting some weaker teams earlier on in the competition. That bodes well for us competing for trophies in coming seasons.
    • Youngsters: This year we saw a couple of very junior players get and take chances in the senior team. Trent Alexander-Arnold's display against Manchester United was awesome because Klopp showed faith in him in a huge game and he delivered. Likewise Ben Woodburn got some significant minutes in the senior team and showed good tactical awareness and some promise. Ovie Ejaria, Joe Gomez, Kevin Stewart, and Sheyi Ojo all got some minutes as well.
    • Klopp's signings: Klopp's big signings for the season were Sadio Mane, Joel Matip, and Gini Wijnaldum. Mane was arguably player of the season, Matip became our best defender, and Wijnaldum was the glue in our midfield all season long. Each of Klopp's big signings (bar perhaps Karius) came into the team and excelled. Ragnar Klavan was an excellent, cheap, third choice central defender. He had a great performance against Everton and was generally reliable otherwise, plus he understands he's third choice and doesn't fuss about not being included often.
    • Big game performance: Against other members of the top six, we had five wins, five draws, and zero losses. Beating Arsenal twice put us in the Champions League instead of them, and we outperformed United against CL rivals, leading to them placing sixth. This bodes well for us both in the league next season and in Europe, where there will be no easy games to bolster our points total. Klopp can put together a team that's motivated, tight at the back, and creative and driven enough to nick a win against top teams.
    • Collective buy-in to the team ethos: Everybody clearly bought in to the hardworking style Klopp wanted from the team. Maybe it took exiling Sakho to achieve, but there was little to no team drama this season.
    Cons
    • No Trophies: Despite our relative success this season, this is a club that demands success. Progression in the EFL cup was promising, but the club came away empty-handed for the season despite having the advantage of fewer games from being out of Europe. Without the CL or Europa league, we should have been able to win one of the cups and we didn't.
    • Sakho Situation: This isn't a knock on Klopp, but it's unfortunate what happened with Sakho this season. Although Matip had an impressive season, Sakho is still the best central defender on the club's payroll and it's unfortunate that both he couldn't behave himself, and that Klopp couldn't mend the relationship. Lovren was decent this season as well, but there's no doubt he made his share of mistakes. His performance in the loss to Palace was awful, and there's no doubt we'd have had a formidable CB pairing with Sakho and Matip.
    • Wilson non-inclusion: Wilson only saw minutes in one match in the cups this season. It may have been something organized by Klopp and the Academy coaching staff to give Wilson a leadership role with the U23s and have him get an entire injury-free season under his belt before exposing him to the senior team, but his form for the U23s certainly deserved more of a look in the first team. He scored almost 30 goals on the season from the wing, and although we were out of the cups in the second half of the season and the league games were important to the race for CL football, it still seems like he should have been given more of a chance.
    • Lack of squad depth: I don't think this is as big a deal as it's been made out to be so far. Going into the season without European football, I think we had just about the right mix of players for the squad. Pretty good nailed-on starting XI (Migs; Clyne Matip Lovren Milner; Henderson, Wijnaldum, Lallana; Mane, Firmino, Coutinho) with a solid back up for each position (Karius; TAA, Gomez, Klavan, Moreno; Lucas, Can, Grujic, Origi, Sturridge, Ings). That's about all you need for a season where you're unlikely to be playing two games a week often. Yes, our general lack of squad depth did hurt us, specifically in January, but that was unfortunate circumstances.
    • Key injuries: Key injuries hurt far more than our lack of squad depth, in my opinion. Mane missing in August was a huge reason for our loss to Burnley, and he missed the end of the season as well. Coutino's December injury didn't hurt us until January, when he was still off form gaining match fitness and Mane was in Africa. Henderson missed a long stretch in the spring just when he was starting to get the hang of the defensive midfield position. On top of it all, Sturridge was injured constantly.
    Hopes
    • Maintaining the big game performance: If we can maintain a 2 point per game average against our rivals for the top four and the title next season, we'll have a huge leg up in the league. This will be very difficult, but I genuinely believe Klopp's style of football is well-suited to playing against the top six. He frequently gets the better of Guardiola and Wenger. Our toughest top six opponent this year was Mourinho (2 draws), and that's because he parks the bus and plays negative football. Further, performing against the big boys is what we'll have to do to progress in the Champions League.
    • Improve record against smaller opposition: Failing to beat sides that park the bus is not a problem unique to Liverpool FC. There's a reason small clubs park the bus; it levels the playing field somewhat and is statistically a good way of getting points that are otherwise unlikely against better opposition. I'm not particularly worried about our perceived inability to break down a parked bus; we do it more often than not and we don't really lag behind our rivals in this respect. What needs to improve are defensive lapses against smaller opposition that took us out of the title race this season. Losses like the Burnley one in August will happen, but the abject failure that was Bournemouth in December as well as the collapses against Swansea, Leicester, and Palace are what moved us from competing for the title to struggling into the top four.
    • New signings, and clearing out dead wood: While I think our squad size was fine for last season, it will not work for next season with the increase in games from European football and hopefully a more impressive run in the FA cup. With Sakho likely gone, we have two good central defenders, then Klavan and Gomez. We absolutely need a center back to replace Lovren in the First XI and thereby increase depth in the position; using Lucas there last year at times was awful (not that Lucas was awful, it just sucked that we had to). We need a left back. Milner played very well this season but he shouldn't be a long term answer and at some point this club is going to have to realize it hasn't had a decent left back for more than a year in the PL era. We'll also need to add depth in central midfield and on the wing. Most importantly, we need to buy players who bed in as seamlessly as Mane, Wijnaldum, and Matip did. On top of that, we need to clear the deadwood that we have out on loan. Wisdom, Markovic, and Bogdan have all failed to make it here and should be shipped out permanently. Brannagan and Chirivella need to leave for their own development. As much as I love Flanno, he's never quite recovered from his injuries. There's a place here for him, but it doesn't feature much involvement in the first team.
    • Progress to the knockout stage of the CL: We're back where this club belongs. With the talent in the squad, we ought to be able to get out of the group stage. A lot of this is dependent on the draw, and our coefficient isn't what it once was, but we've shown the ability to get the better of the best in this league, and I hope we can show the same in the Champions League as well.
    • Youth involvement: We have some fantastic youth prospects, and next season we'll have more opportunities to blood them into the team than we have this year. With the addition of CL footy, the cups and even some lesser league games will hopefully feature certain youngsters. TAA will hopefully get a bunch of minutes as the only other right back at the club when Clyne needs a rest. Joe Gomez is finally healthy and should see increased game time. Ben Woodburn should get a decent amount of game time next season and I hope to see Klopp start to develop him into the player he sees him being down the road, whether that be as a striker, on the left wing a-la Coutinho, or in the Lallana role in midfield. Sheyi Ojo, Ovie Ejaria, Ryan Kent, Rhian Brewster, and Danny Ward should also all gain first team experience next season, although some will certainly leave on loan. Most of all, I hope Harry Wilson is given a chance next season. He's certainly earned it. My biggest hope for next season is that one of these youngsters takes their chance with both hands and heads into the 2018/2019 season looking to make a huge impact in the first team.
    You had a great post, so sorry for just snipping a part of it. I started writing my list and included injuries as a con but the more I thought about it and wrote on it, I'm not sure it was really all that big of a deal. Without Coutinho in December we recorded four wins, one loss, and two draws, including a win over City. That's not really all that bad. Without Hendo from late February on, we had 8 wins, two losses, and three draws, including wins over Everton and Arsenal. That's still pretty impressive. In January, when it all fell apart, we were missing Mane to the AFCON and Coutinho was still recovering from injury (but playing a part). I think United, Arsenal, and City have all had to deal with more injuries than we have.
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2017
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  26. Jase

    Jase Well-Known Member

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    Pretty sure the majority of people naming "January" as a "con" aren't doing so because of the month itself, more because of the cause and effect factors that led to what happened during that time.
     
  27. OhYaBeauty

    OhYaBeauty Mamadou Sakho Fan Club Chairman

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    I get that. It just seems like a cop out to me.
     
  28. Nikola

    Nikola Optimist with a bit of experience. Admin

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    @OhYaBeauty, I think that I read the other day that only Arsenal had more days missed because of injuries than Liverpool when it comes to top six. I'll try to find the link for that.
     
  29. OhYaBeauty

    OhYaBeauty Mamadou Sakho Fan Club Chairman

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    I looked for that when I was posting that but couldn't find it. I'd be a bit surprised by that, seems we've had our injuries but aside from Hendo and Coutinho they've been minimal. I guess our numbers are boosted by Ings and Gomez, not to mention Sturridge.

    Still, when I look at our poor results this season, the only three that stand out as being as a result of injury were Burnley in August without Mane, Bournemouth in December sans Cou, and Hendos first game out against Leicester before Can found form. Our big collapse in January wasn't really injury dependent as much as it was because of missing Mane.
     
  30. Retro Helix

    Retro Helix Member

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    Pros & Cons: Pretty much summed up nicely by majority of the posts.

    Hope:
    - Summer clear out of all liabilities in the current squad.
    - New signings to complete our squad in areas that are desperately lacking.
    - Proper rotation especially since we are in the CL (hopefully we'll qualify).
    - Change of tactics/game plan sooner rather than later.
     

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