Time for Benítez to give Gerrard a wide berth

The received wisdom regarding Liverpool Football Club’s current malaise, in a nutshell, for you, now, right here on Guardian Unlimited: Rafael Benítez simply can’t stop tinkering with that team!

So there you have it. Pithy and precise, and everyone’s saying it. Problem is, like so many handed-down truisms – eating up your crusts puts hair on your chest, carrots make you see better at night, whipping it out just before showtime is a foolproof method of contraception – it doesn’t actually have that much basis in fact. Here’s a different suggestion: rotation isn’t Liverpool’s problem at all. In fact, almost the opposite is the case, because the root cause of their patchy form is Benítez’s dogged persistence with playing one particular player in one particular position all the time.

Steven Gerrard should not, under any circumstances, be playing in central midfield.

Excellent article. Credit to Danny. Read on here.


That’s my age now. I have entered my fourth decade and I tell you it feel very good. The twenties are over but I somehow feel relieved. Why? Because it feel little different except the perceived ageing money is off my back. I thought I’d panic, feel immediately transported to some age where I talk about jazz, weekends away on the coast and which hoover to buy next. But no. Its the same but better. I feel relieved. My work sucks but I am in the stage of adaptation and besides, last weekend I was in Cardiff for the rugby living up a fantastic atmosphere. Next weekend I’ll be meeting old friends before heading off to Spain for the week.

I feel enlightened. Educated. I could go on University Challenge, a travel show; write a literary review or cover a martial arts show; speak some French, Spanish, Japanese; take more pictures; meet some quality friends; friends I have come to appreciate and admire. Spent time with family; head out on the next road. I could do them all because I am me. I didnt appreciate it before but I have lived and learnt much. Much more to learn and many more years in which to do so.


The Naked Lunch – William Burroughs

The end result of complete cellular representation is cancer. Democracy is cancerous, and bureaus are its cancer. A bureau takes root anywhere in the state, turns malignant like the Narcotic Bureau, and grows and grows, always reproducing more of its own kind, until it chokes the host if not controlled or excised. Bureaus cannot live without a host, being true parasitic organisms. (A cooperative on the other hand can live without the state. That is the road to follow. The building up of independent units to meet needs of the people who participate in the functioning of the unit. A bureau operates on the opposite principle of inventing needs to justify its existence.) Bureaucracy is wrong as a cancer, a turning away from the human evolutionary direction of infinite potentials and differentitaion and independent spontaneous action, to the complete parasitism of a virus.


Just got back from Cardiff. whatta fucking day. me, Dr Luke and 3 Irish lads. Watched England beat up Australia, kept drinking. got to the NZ v France game. the atmosphere was like nothing I have seen at a rugby game. The French supporters were fanatical. Great great game. One huge French guy was handing round brandy throughout the game. he had bottles of it. Afterwards we hit the bars until 4am. the town was buzzing and all ruby fans were drinking together. and I got laid with a very fit lass. when you’re hot…..

Si & Jen

I was awaiting a text from Ellen, me chilling out watching a film. Texts had been flying back forth over tonight’s plan. It vibrated. Why would you have it buzz?

“We’re in Rome. I just proposed. She said yes. Get ready for an almighty piss up.”

As usual Si had his heart just about in the right order. It made my day, like when LP did the same. Cheers guys. A perfect couple getting down to the business of being together.

I had a feeling too with this one. My old dear asked me when i would be back from my Oz trip. The summer I replied thinking of the sun, the green, the church, Si and Jen waltzing away from the altar. Ah yeah.

Come on the Big Hitter. Good man.