AFTER the excitement of 85/86 WWCH changes pace to one of the more curious seasons in Liverpool’s recent history.
Gerard Houllier, just back from his heart illness, manages Liverpool to a start to the season full of good results but not always terrific performances.
Part one takes in Liverpool’s transfer business, a spate of draws, a trip to Valencia before Liverpool meet Leeds on the way down and Chelsea on the way up.
Joining Neil Atkinson and Mike Nevin for this journey are Craig Rimmer and Chris Maguire. It’s a strange season, it’s a fascinating one.
What a dispiriting season. Started off pretty well before losing our way big time. Remember watching those first few games on holiday in Tenerife whilst sporting a Senegal shirt with Diouf 9 on the back which I´d pestered one of those bracelet sellers on the beach for. It came with authentic Senegalese sweat on it. Needless to say, I didn´t have the last laugh. On a side point, how humbling was that pummeling at the Mestalla. I seem to remember Didi Hamann with a bit of a fancy bonce ahead of that game and feeling instantly worried. Pablo Aimar at his very best.
I had to stop listening just to phone people about the Owen stat.
How did we allow him to ever take a pen. I am sure we missed three on the run at one point.
That game against Valencia was the turning point for me with Houillier. I’d seen Liverpool lose plenty of times in lots of different ways but until that night I’d never seen them dismantled so completely.
Up to that point I had total confidence in Houllier. I was certain he was going to lead Liverpool to the title at last. After that game my first nagging doubts appeared that he might not be the one to lead the club to the promised land. I’m not claiming to be a football sage here. I dismissed those doubts after each good performance and there were a fair few early on in the season, but each time they’d come back again and again with each bad performance, getting stronger and stronger as Houllier’s reign came to an end.