Saturday’s cancellation makes this column something of a cerebral exercise, as I attempt to evoke my days of reading Sartre and wallowing in vast, empty nothingness.
So, the Utrecht game... we’re through, and of course that’s all peachy. My colleagues will be waxing far more lyrically about their February challenges, that irritable Scouse jealousy became more acute last Friday.
Let’s face it; Ferguson can waffle till he’s purple in the face (okay, purpler) but the group stage is death on toast and it’s the knockout which gives everyone the shudder through the vertebrae.
The club let the kids in for free last week. What they didn’t tell anyone is that they had to pay to get out.
It was a nothing game, neither side could change their Europa status and yet no one threatened to entertain in any way. Their manager can go back with a ‘famous’ draw at the famous Anfield, but ours? My earliest red memory is Toshack scoring three against Hibs. I cannot recall if this was the very first game I saw; perhaps there was another as abject as Utrecht that thankfully never affected my lifelong affinity. Hodgson’s reputation is such that some of the players seem to know they can stink the place out and they still won’t be blamed.
He won’t have been put in a better frame of mind by the internet Q&A with the new Americans. Though the questions were thoroughly vetted, enough seeped through about Roy to make a lack of confidence in him palpable.
Each Liverpool manager resorts to survivalist claptrap when they sense the end is nigh. In Roy’s case the end came almost before the beginning, hence the weekly piffle.
I had a sly giggle when he bigged up Danny Murphy as a player we had to watch closely. One had visions of the sort of man-marking job Sammy Lee inflicted on Paul Breitner in the Olympic Stadium for a European semi-final.
Now it was Super Dan, against Fulham, at Anfield, for a crack at eighth place in the league.
There’s your alarm call, your breakfast of eye-opener, right there.
The snow saw to it that the masterplan wasn’t put to good use. Konchesky probably breathed the biggest sigh of relief; when your mam calls your new buddies ‘Scouse scum’, she’s not exactly strewn your path with rose petals.
Liverpool and London does have this strange, strained relationship; his close link with the Terry family won’t help either, given our distaste for that clan.
It’s all fun and games and distractions whilst we wait for the snow to clear and Christmas to be on its gut-stretching wallet-busting way.
Hopefully the next game is Blackpool, and given that we are appalling on our travels it simply provides more ammunition for the “Enough” brigade.
He can also expect a belated visit from the ghost of Liverpool managers past, if the gossip from Italy is true.
He’s done it again, hasn’t he? Rafa will no doubt be accused of another rant, but that stuff’s festered for months and with a bauble in his mitts — who’d have the nerve to call it a trophy — felt suitably emboldened for his perennial back-or-sack spiel. Inter do need upgrading, certainly our 84 side did. Uncle Joe got players to freshen it up and when that never quite worked Kenny got McMahon, changed the full backs and won the Double. You never stand still in football.
It’s sad that Benitez has been reduced to this largely comical figure. If he’s looking for work at the same time we’ve a vacancy, there’ll no doubt be paroxysms of Rafalove from the usual suspects who simply can’t let go. Then it’s not so comical.
God help us, every one.