Welcome to Issue 298 of Red All Over The Land. I know I said that in the last Issue, but this is the real Issue 298.
After three performances that left a bit to be desired, we ended up collecting nine points to go top of the table. I’m sure there are a legion of our fans saying, “Wait till we start playing well.” That’s what I’m waiting for.
The injuries are stacking up which means not much continuity and a few players are not playing as well as they were earlier in the season. In fairness we’re not the only team beset by injuries which is a result of, as more than one football manager has alluded to, too many games. The only people who can change that are the clubs. The same with the glut of 12.30 kick offs that we seem to get. The clubs, aided and abetted by the PFA can say surely no to these games after an international break. Games could be given an evening kick off or played on a Sunday lunchtime. However, the most lucrative market for televised football is in the far east and that’s why we’re stuck with them.
Our season won’t be determined by the forthcoming games against Manchester United, Arsenal and Newcastle plus an away day at Burnley but they may tell us where we are. No matter how these games fare we should still be thinking about adding to the squad in January. I don’t listen to the rumour mill. I leave it to those in control of the club. We have some outstanding young players on the fringes but now injuries are preventing, or have prevented, them from playing. Drawing Arsenal away in the FA Cup wasn’t what we wanted if we intended to give these lads more game time, but of course we could still progress.
Progression in the Europa Cup was vital, and it has given opportunities to some of the younger players but at the end of the day these lads should be playing on a regular basis in the Under 21’s. The fact so many of them have had to be on the bench for Premier League games shows that we still don’t have a squad big enough to cope with the ever-increasing number of fixtures, injuries and any dip in form.
The new Anfield Road Stand is finally looking likely to happen and the clubs test night for various things was on December 11th. I hope it means the Upper Anny will be finally in use because Anfield hasn’t looked right this season with so many thousand empty seats. Whether those who will be in the new construction add to the atmosphere we can only wait and see but one thing for sure the noise levels need to increase. The final minutes against Fulham were amazing. The proceeding 85-minutes weren’t.
The Government have failed the Hillsborough movement with their watered down ruling on Hillsborough Law. I just hope after the next election a Labour Government is elected and they finally take the decent way, the only way, and fully adopt Hillsborough Law. [See the SoS piece towards the end of this issue.]
Our Kevin Keegan evening to celebrate the 28th anniversary of Red All Over The Land was a great success, and raised in the region of £4,000 for an event being put on at The Church on Oakfield Road. The clever ones out there will know Issue 300 is on the horizon. I never expected to reach that milestone but the reason we have is because of those who subscribe, buy, contribute to and help sell the Fanzine. More on this when it finally happens.
JJP: Enjoy what happens at this time of the year both on and off the pitch. If I have a New Year wish it would be to see evil abolished and the world become what it was surely intended to be.