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Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Rafa never wanted Owen

I wrote an article last week suggesting that Owen had put the ball firmly in Liverpool's court by stating publicly that he wanted a return, otherwise he would join Newcastle. This meant that if Liverpool didn't make a bid for him, no one at Liverpool could complain if Owen moved to Newcastle. Owen cleverly had put himself in a win-win situation.

Rafa therefore turned the tables on Owen by meeting him yesterday and making a bid for him, knowing that his bid would be rejected by Real Madrid and therefore making out that it was Owen's decision to go to Newcastle. At least Liverpool don't look like the bad guys this way.

The bottom line is that Rafa never wanted him. I think the players and the board were keen on his return but the vibes coming out of Anfield were that it was the manager's sole decision. When asked questions about Owen, Rafa always stated that he wasn't after another striker, and with Cisse looking in good form so far this season, the writing was always on the wall for Owen.

I agree that it should always be the manager's decision on what players should be signed and sold, but I'll be honest - I'm disappinted that Rafa didn't want Owen, and sod's law, you just know that Owen will score against us.

I hope I'm wrong and Cisse scores 20+ goals this season but I cannot help wondering what it would've been like to see Owen back in a red shirt. Unfortunately we'll never know.

37 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

sigh...
we don't have a finisher in the team.
what is the point of creating chance after chance if we don't put them away?

8/30/2005 11:27 am

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

let's put a bit of faith in the gaffer. while i'd love to see MO back, i also don't want to see Cisse move away, he looks very promissing.

we must now hope we don't get hit by injuries, since IMHO we need a 4th decent striker...

FM and PC are only ever going to get 15 goals per season at best... if only we had moved sooner for KUYT...

8/30/2005 11:29 am

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

People seem to forget how hamstring injury-prone Owen was when playing regularly in England.

8/30/2005 11:31 am

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

calm down!!!

8/30/2005 11:32 am

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It was mo choice in the first place to leave ,giving the incoming coach no chance. Mo only cared about mo and getting games to play in the england squad, good ridance to him.

8/30/2005 11:36 am

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Owen always missed his fair share..

he also never scored 20 in a seaon in the premiership for us.

he was an addition- not the answer, specially if it also meant sacrificing cisse.

8/30/2005 11:37 am

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I THINK LIVEROOL MUST CONCENTRATE MORE ON THE TEAM AS WE ARE LOOSING GROUND ON MANY OTHER PLAYERS,NOT ON MO ONLY.MY GOD WE ARE THE EUROPEAN CHAMPIONS AND WE ARE NOT ATTRACTING SO MUCH STARS TO OUR TEAM.I HAVE FAITH IN RAFA BUT NOT IN ALL OUR PLAYERS,WE ARE NOT CONSISTENT AND I THINK WE NEED A PURE FINISHER INSIDE THE BOX

8/30/2005 11:38 am

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The bottom line is that Owen didn't give a stuff when he left and he only wanted to come back to save his England place..... and in his anxiety to do so he doesn't appear to have given a second thought to the unrest he was causing with the Liverpool playing staff or the manager. Our manager won us the European Cup; he could have left if he thought he was having a player foisted on him particularly one who has messed the club around before!

8/30/2005 11:46 am

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

MO used Liverpool once again making all the right noises in the press "I want to return home and will only go to Newcastle on loan".

Call me synical but this suggests MO was using the mighty reds to sqeeze more money out of the geordies, by saying he would take a paycut to go to Liverpool forces Newcastle to at least match his Real Madrid wages, he's nothing more than a mercenary.

8/30/2005 11:56 am

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Although we would all love to see MO come back, the fact is that no player is bigger than the club. MO wanted to leave to win more trophies, he wanted to come back to England to be in the world cup side. He didn't think about Liverpool when he left for next to nothing last year (can you believe Real doubled their money on him?). Cisse will prove his worth playing alongside Morientes. Hopefully Pongolle will get his opportunity this year and prove that he really is a "gem"

8/30/2005 12:01 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm glad Rafa didn't buy him....Another player who wouldn't have had any pre-season preparation with us and We Liverpool FC, having to completely change our style of play to accomodate him.

You don't change anything you've worked all pre-season to achieve at this stage of the season. Not if you want to win trophies and give Chelsea and Arsenal a run for their money.

This has solely been about Owen and his World Cup preparation. The simple fact is. We don't need him as much as we need a Centre-Back or someome who can consistently deliver quality crosses onto Nando's head. Well done Rafa for not bowing to Media / Fan/ Board pressure , If that was the case.

YNWA !

8/30/2005 12:01 pm

 
Anonymous Mutaz Ahmed said...

It was very clear that Rafa spent 6 weeks following the win in Istanbul thinking how to change the away form. He decided to play the system he is used to in Spain. Tight at the back with 5 midfielders and a lonely striker who can keep the ball. He then started signing players who can fit into this system and do the job for him. He was successful in signing Crouch who proved last year he can do it. Morientes is the second striker Rafa likes because of his all round ability. Owen and Cisse and Milan are simply not in his plan because they don't fit into 4-5-1 and Rafa is not prepared to change it. So Milan went, Owen not welcomed and Cisse maybe on his way soon. In the midfield he got his man SISSOKO who really impressed me and along Gerard and Alonso that department could be the best in the Premiership. However the problem for Rafa is that to play this you need pace on both right and left sides. Rafa is not daft, he worked hard to sign Gonzales and Figo but we all know what happened. Rafa clearly wanted to play the system Chelsea is playing but unless we matched the pace of Rubbin and Duff we will struggle badly this year. I think we should give the man time to build his team and appreciate that we haven't got Chelsea's money to bring all the player we need to Anfield.

8/30/2005 12:07 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

LOL...

MO wants to win more trophies... so why go to NUFC...??? lol

8/30/2005 12:11 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rafa is barking...
from what I've seen this season the only goalscorer we've got is Gerrard, Cisse is absolutely pants.Its a disgrace that he hasn't brought Owen back, still we did get Nunez for him...priceless

8/30/2005 12:34 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rafa is disappointing... Everyone knows how useless his current strikers are... everyone in the world knows that... everyone whi has eyes can see that the liverpool strikers are useless...Cisse and Morientes are USELESS... wat is a striker when they can't score goals... It's really disappointing to see Rafa so 'blind'.

ANyway it's better Owen don't go back... cos liverpool 'kills' good players... Baros(Euro top scorer), Morientes(CL top scorer), Cisse(French league top scorer)... look wat become of them at pool.. they become shit... so I dun want to see Owen turning into shit...Newcatle is a bette place...

8/30/2005 12:45 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

comments like that, clearly not a LFC supporter...

8/30/2005 12:48 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have mixed feelings about the MO situation. On the one hand I thought if he ever come home it would be to Anfield and now thats not the case it feels strange. More so than when he left! Probably for this reason I hoped he would return - 'The heart speaking'. On the other hand he choose to leave, messed us around for ages with his contract and promises, thought the grass was grenner (LOL) and as said by others is only interested in his England career. It was even rumoured that his initial preference was to sign for the manchester redsocks and that says it all! 'This is the head speaking'.
My only worry in all this, is where are our goals going to come from? I don't want Cisse to leave and have been impressed by him in spells this season, but what does Rafa think of him? Not a lot by the look of it. A bit of Houllier stubbornness creeping in! Rafa signed FM (a compatriate) and inherited Cisse, and is desparate for FM to do well. Obviously we all are, but I think this is starting to have a detrimental effect on our performances. Rafa seems to want to play FM whatever and is reluctant to take him off if he is uneffective, which is practically all the time!!
And what of Baros, I think his leaving wwas only greeted with so little backlash and fans anger/moans as we all thought a new striker was on the way. If this is not the case (though maybe we'll sign Kuyt?), then I think we're in a bit of trouble. The promised centre back and winger have not materialised. So now we are in a late scramble to sign these players, but what will they be, our 5th or 6th preferences? Although teams think we are loaded now and may raise their valuation's, if these players really wished to come to Anfield they would surely make this desire public, somewhat forcing their clubs hand and thus the price down?
All in all a very dissapointing summer in the transfer market, I didn't think we were going to go all Chelski and sign several 15 million pound players, but I had hoped for 1 or 2 top signings and a few squad ones. I still trust Rafa, as we have to, but the last few games have told me that we are still treading water. Ahead of most premiership teams, but certainly not catching up with the so called top three. The media cliche's of us struggling without Gerrard have been all to apparent, Cisse's contribution in the Super cup aside. Until his introduction that night we were very poor. Okay we strung a few passes together, but creativity in the final 3rd and an ability to hold the ball up when there was completely absent. And when will Hypia learn (or be told) to stop giving the ball away? Is it me or has he got a less than 5% pass success rate? The 5% is from when he manages to find JC!!
Anyway I'm ranting now and vearing off the point of the post - Michael Owen.
Basically with Baros gone I am dissapointed we lost out on MO, whatever the reasons, although I wouldn't have welcomed a large fee. Hopefully we'll sign a new striker and keep Cisse (God forbid he does sell or loan him out). Maybe the January transfer window will be a productive one for us (de ja vu!).
After the initial shock I'm not bothered MO is going to newcastle, unless he scores agianst us of course. It'll be amusing to see how his career goes if they continue their current form though. Wonder how he'll enjoy his trips to Millwall, Plymouth and Cardif etc next season!! A get out clause is only worthwhile if someone is willing to pay the asking price. And who would in that situation? And newcastle may be playing at best buddies now, but see what happens if in a years time if MO gets itchy feet again or his England chances are limited. Freddie Shephard won't be so nice and friendly to deal with then.

8/30/2005 12:50 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And the last piece of silverware Newcastle won was? The last time Newcastle had a team this crap was when Ruud Gullit was in charge. At least they were playing sexy football then. Owen at least has experience in playing under three different managers in one season (at Real) so he wont be phased when Souness gets the boot and Newcastle make Shearer the owner, manager, player and boot studder. At least now the Georgies will be able to have pictures of Owen to fill the empty Trophy room at St. James park

8/30/2005 12:53 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

at last he's gone! now we can concentrate on getting better players to help the team not one individual's fear of losing his england place to Jermaine 'Headless Chicken' Defoe.

8/30/2005 1:01 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Come you 'pool suuporters, Newcastle need him more than you do! He always scored against us when he wore a red shirt, so I hope he returns the compliment when we play you.

Trust your manager - he's got it right so far.

8/30/2005 1:29 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Champions League! Alonso and Sissoko. Give Rafa some credit. He has a plan in mind that involves a team. There's no MO in team.

Houllier based the team around Owen and he paid for it. Good luck Michael and thanks for the memories.

8/30/2005 1:50 pm

 
Blogger RedsMan said...

Sound comments, except that I dont agree LFC have destroyed Baros, Cisse and Morientes. Baros was an inconsistent scorer yet a reliable worker. Morientes is within a new system, new climate and needs confidence and chances. They will come for him, it has happened to a number of good players before, Bergkamp for one didn't settle in his first season.

Cisse looked determined to prove something on Friday and he did just that. If RB noticed that a player of pace and injection into the play would be ideal at the time of the substitution, then he showed he is yet again a shrewd tactician. Cisse wants to stay, wants to play, he showed it, now it's time to enhance it.

Crouch obviously has the height but also can hold the ball and has a touch for the goals, its about utilising that talent. Harry Redknapp is one of the best managers in the game to spot unknown talent and Crouch is one of them. With Rafael at the reins, I'm behind the manager. After Istanbul, there are some who expect to see major signings and a sudden emergence up the table, and become despondent if they don't.

I don't regret Owen going to NUFC, it has happened and we go on. Newcastle fans are delighted that a proven talent like Owen has arrived. We would have had him if no one else was involved but we were not prepared to spend for him, and I think that's the right decision.

I cannot forget that he said he would consider ONLY a loan move to NUFC if Liverpool were not interested. Liverpool were not that interested, he wants regular football and NUFC are prepared to provide it. It is also sad that this comes so soon after leaving Liverpool. Souness said that Owen's first choice was Liverpool, but there was no guarantee of giving him a first team place so inevitably he signs at St James' Park.

Boxing Day this year could very well be explosive.


RedsMan.

8/30/2005 2:00 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i am not sure rafa got right at this time he fail to sign MO he fail to sign kuyt and 3 to 4 big name defenders i dont know whats going at anfield board doesnt seem to helpful to rafa and 2 days to go there is no sign of winger and defender AND I REALLY BELIEVE MORIENTIS IS NOT GOING TO DO JACK I DONT WHERE THE GOALS COMING FROM RAFA HAVE TO ANSWER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

8/30/2005 5:04 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

there's loads of rumours going round that owen has various get-out clauses in his contract with newcastle. apparently he can leave after just one season if he is unhappy. if this is true then newcastle are fools to have signed him cos he'll just leave after a season. maybe this is something that liverpool and owen have conjured up?

8/30/2005 5:25 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OWEN THE JUDAS - HE STALLED ON CONTRACT TALKS, MAKING US SELL HIM FOR NEXT TO NOTHING - WE ONLY TRAINED HIM TO WHAT HE WAS & APPARENTLY HE LOVED THE CLUB!!! - & HE AND HIS 'REPS' SFX ARE POISON - LOOK WHAT THEY DID WITH GERRARD. I HOPE I NEVER SEE HIM IN A RED SHIRT - & AM PRETTY SURE HE'LL NEVER SEE A CUP OR MEDAL (APPART FROM A LOSSSSERRSS MEDAL) - AND THE IRONIC THING IS, MEDALS WAS WHAT HE WAS AFTER WHEN HE LEFT. I HOPE YOU READ THIS MO - AND HOPE GERRARD WAVES HIS CL WINNERS MEDAL IN YOUR FACE. MICHAEL HAS LOST HIS PACE & I HOPE TO TOP THIS OFF HE FAILS & DOESNT GET IN THE ENGLAND SQUAD - OOHHHH MICHAEL - LOOKS LIKE WHAT GOES AROUND COMES AROUND......ONE OTHER THING - PLS ADVISE HOW A TRUE LFC PLAYER /SUPPORTER WOULD TRY AND CHOOSE THE MANCS OVER THE TEAM HE 'LOVES'??? - i'M SURE NFC FANS WILL TREAT YOU LIKE A GOD - CAUSE WHAT ELSE HAVE THEY GOT TO CHEER??? NICE ONE RAFA - WE DONT NEED HIM OR HIS REPS.

8/30/2005 5:30 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

LIVERPOOL ARE JUST JEALOUS THAT MICHAEL OWEN CHOSE NEWCASTLE AND NOT THEM!

8/30/2005 7:27 pm

 
Anonymous Chris said...

I think that buying MO back for more than 10 million would have been wrong. Not only that but it would have sent the wrong message out to all those players who USE their clubs for their own personal gain with little or no regard for the club and the adoring fans that have made them rich and famous. Bite the hand that feeds you - but do so at your own risk. Sure he's a great player and I would have wanted him back, but on OUR terms - not his or Real's.

8/30/2005 7:36 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to admit I was a little shocked and saddened when I heard the news that Owen had chosed Newcastle over Liverpool. However there are plenty of silver linings...
1. We have saved £17 million which hopefully will be spent on several up and coming players
2. Owen was not really doing so great at Liverpool in the year before he left - have we got such short term memories?
3. We have avoided the embarrassment of having the same player back after a year whilst mking a loss of £7 million
4. Cisse seems to be exploding to form - we all seem to forget that he has come back from a terrible injury and was a great striker before his problems.

Well hope thats enough to make us feel better.

However I just can't help thinking that we're just not good enough to compete with the top 4. So far we have not really dominated a single team post CL final, in the way expected of the champions of Europe. Did we win the CL purely by chance? Were we really skillful enough? Did we really have enough talent? or was it just luck and sheer British spirit?

Hope Benitez has the answers. Because I can't find them at present

8/30/2005 8:13 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

great post by the anon above me. owen has never been one of the great strikers and i think cisse has a lot more potential.

ok the reds were lucky to win the european cup but they also played brillantly in those games.

i think the rafalution needs more time.

8/30/2005 9:16 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with Anonymous Said.

8/30/2005 9:29 pm

 
Blogger Berry said...

I am glad Owen did not return to Liverpool. We don't want to look back in the past. We got new players. We got to move on. Good luck to him.

8/30/2005 10:24 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Owen chose Newcastle because we were never really serious about signing him. Rafa would have taken him for around 6M but not a penny more due to the 4M still owed, He is working on a really tight budget but he didn't spend crazy amounts last year and look what we ended up with. Since then he has washed out most of the deadwood and is restructuring the reserve team by turning them into a mixture of young hungry scousers and young talents from across the globe. Ok we still need a CB and RW which has been really obvious in the first two games this season, but Rafa doesn't believe MO would fit into his regimented 451 formation which is a fari point and as for the talk of Michael getting us 20-30 goals a season!?!. Winter is coming and I'm sure poor old Michaels hamstrings will suddenly wish they were is sunnier climates. The guys a good player who will go down in history as one of the greats but was it worth risking all of Rafas ideologies for one player? In Rafa we trust.

8/30/2005 10:37 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yep have some faith YNWA

8/30/2005 10:38 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's a shame MO has decided with NUFC over liverpool I expected him to be true liverpool at heart through and through and would only choose liverpool but, obviously not! Gerrard though with what he went through still chose liverpool even when he was guaranteed the world at a his price, he feels for liverpool and only breathes for liverpool. My only regret was we never really got to see Cisse and M. Owen as a strike partnership would have been awesome but cisse will come good long term has more goals in him probably than owen.

GOOD LUCK OWEN anyway, hope it works out but doubtful?

8/30/2005 11:26 pm

 
Blogger RedsMan said...

EFT is a more positive site about Liverpool than the posts on the LFC official site itself. Many there speak out against for/against Morientes, some for/against Cisse, some for/against Owen, and a number of them against Rafael Benitez. We want players who want to play for Liverpool first and foremost, and I can't say Owen definitely comes into that preference. Proven goalscorer but Benitez has his plans and they didn't, from the outset, feature Owen.

I agree that we do not as yet look dominate in terms of scoring well since the season started, but perhaps that isn't needed. Perhaps we will have an unorthordox method of victory. Certainly seemed so on Friday but there you go. The main thing is we are in touching distance of the top 4 places, and with the two games in hand so far I hope we use them well.

Owen left Liverpool for honours to join Real Madrid, looking to possibly walk into the first team on reputation and therefore securing the football to attract the England boss. Now it's not about honours, it's about appearing regularly in a first team, in the first place.

This is why Owen couldn't consider a loan move. Signing permanently gives a chance to return to the UK and settle again; he gets first team football and Eriksson sees more of him; to be out on loan is not the way he should be going if he is to be one of the most potent strikers in Europe.

There has been mention of his goalscoring statistics, but what of those when he played alongside Shearer for England?


RedsMan.

8/31/2005 12:16 am

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agree with RedsMan there, most in this blog prefer to see the positive side of the whole fiesco. I for one never belief mo stood for what our great club is & thats YNWA, the day owen walked out on us the writing was already on the wall. Am grateful for all he's done but obviously from the day he left we should all move on & not look back.

9/01/2005 7:14 am

 
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