Friday, 4 June 2010

An inconvenient truth

So Rafa's time is up and Liverpool look to the future.

Benitez retained his position at Liverpool for so long based on goodwill and faith from having won The Champions League. For Liverpool there is a connection to the trophy that allowed them to overlook the lack of a league title for so long, they have been European Champions 5 times and runners up twice; clearly an impressive pedigree in this tournament. His failure to qualify for the Champions League this time around has ultimately cost him his post. Both from a financial point of view and from the perception of the club as a major force in Europe. Liverpool are among the elite having been European champions along with Ajax, Aston Villa, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Benfica, Borussia Dortmund, Celtic, Feyenoord, Hamburg, Internazionale, Juventus, Manchester United, Marseille, Milan, Nottingham Forest, Porto, PSV Eindhoven, Real Madrid, Red Star Belgrade and Steaua Bucharest.

The unpalatable truth is that Liverpool have decided that changes need to take place in order that they re-establish themselves and have acted accordingly; something Arsenal are not prepared to do to re-establish the club domestically. Arsenal’s omission from the above list should have been the concern at the club and continuing to win the title on a regular basis should have been an ongoing mission along with using the move to The Emirates as a platform for an assault on a place at Europe’s top table. Having reached a final we should have used that as a stepping stone; we should have wanted more!

Now we find ourselves adrift on both fronts and diminished in the domestic trophies. Benitez has been allowed a period of grace but the club have been decisive in acknowledging that it was time for a change. Wenger’s period of grace continues but for how long? It seems that the ambition of Arsenal doesn’t match that of Liverpool and sadly a number of other clubs.

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