Monday, 8 August 2011

Is King Kenny making King Kevin's mistakes?

When it’s football anthems you want to marvel at the Kop has always been the place to seek out.

And as the season comes into view, they need to warm up their throats and launch into a new tune. Namely, get your finger out Kenny!

For whilst Liverpool’s parade of attacking stars this week has got fans licking their lips in anticipation of taking teams apart, it’s the other end they should worry about.

Just like Kevin Keegan in his prime, Dalglish has been stocking up on more forward thinking stars than he can shake a stick at.

Charlie Adam, Stewart Downing and Jordan Henderson promise goals galore and a swash-buckling style that will whip the Kop up into a fever.

But the smiles will quickly fall off their faces when opponents rush down the pitch and smash one past Pepe Reina.

And that is destined to happen unless Dalglish hurries up and hauls in some of the top defensive talent England currently possesses.

The Premier League is awash with top notch stoppers. Liverpool are not. Ask Daniel Agger.

The Dane piped up following the shambles in Norway to admit the Reds defence has more holes in it than a grubby string vest.

Valeranga had to haul in some second division players to make up the numbers in the pre-season friendly and still managed to net three.

That made it 15 goals conceded before the clash with Valencia - all against opposition that could not lace the boots of the teams Liverpool face in the top fight - starting with Sunderland next week.

So why is Kenny hanging around? Owen Coyle is begging for someone to take Gary Cahill off his hands.

The youngster is England class but his contract is running down and Bolton want to cash in quickly.

Then there is Scott Dann down at Birmingham. Decent enough for Arsenal to check him out. A no-nonsense `stick your head' in type player. Just the sort Liverpool need.

And don’t forget Phil Jagielka just down the road, a deal which may be hard to get done politically but one that would give Liverpool a leader at the back for a decade.

That's not all. Ryan Shawcross at Stoke has a huge future. One that simply can't be fulfil at the Britannia Stadium.

All of them fit the criteria set out by owner John W Henry of young English players boasting a resale value.

Dalglish has already missed out on Phil Jones. He can’t afford to miss out on many more.

If he goes into the season with what he’s got, baseball owner Henry’s ambition of a top four finish is going to be smashed out of the ball park.

The Reds are asking too much of Jamie Carragher to keep the world’s best strikers under control.

Agger has never looked dominant at the heart of the defence, whilst the thought that Martin Skrtel’s could rival Nemanja Vidic as the Premier League’s top hardman now looks laughable.

And after that...well there is nothing. Compare that to United. If Vidic or Rio Ferdinand are out then there’s Jones, Chris Smalling and our own Jonny Evans to slip seamlessly into place.

That pool of talent is an indication of the strength in depth Sir Alex Ferguson believes you need to challenge for honours. King Kenny seems to disagree. I wouldn't.

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