Friday, September 28, 2007

Bill Shankly, 2nd Sept 1913 - 29th Sept 1981

"Some people believe football is a matter of life and death. I'm very disappointed with that attitude. I can assure you it is much, much more important than that."

BORN: Glenbuck, September 2, 1913.

PLAYING CAREER: Junior side: Cronberry Eglinton, 1930-32; Senior debut: For Carlisle United, Dec 31, 1932; Preston North End: Signed for £500 in July, 1933. Debut Dec 9, 1933. Played 297 games for Preston, scoring 13 goals; 1933-34 Div 2 runners-up; 1936-37 FA Cup finalist; 1937-38 FA Cup winner. Scotland (1938-39): Five caps, v England (two), Wales, N.Ireland and Hungary. Played seven wartime internationals, captain v England in 1941.

MANAGERIAL CAREER: Manager of Carlisle Utd, Mar 1949; manager Grimsby Town, Jun 1951-Dec, 1953; Workington Town, Jan 1954-Dec 1955; joined Huddersfield Town Dec 1955 as reserve coach; manager Nov 1956-Nov 1959; Liverpool FC, Nov 1959-July 1974.

LIVERPOOL Achievements: 1961/62 Div 2 champs; 1963/64 Div 1 champs; 1964/65 FA Cup Winners; 1965/66 Div 1 champs, Euro Cup Winners' Cup finalists; 1970/71 FA Cup finalists; 1972/73 Div 1 champs, UEFA Cup winners; 1973-74 FA Cup winners, Div 1 runners-up.

HONOUR: Awarded OBE in 1974.

DIED: Sept 29, 1981, aged 68.

He made us happy. Rest in Peace and You'll Never Walk Alone.

MyRAWK Tribute - A simple ceremony to put the picture of Shanks on to the wall in our home - M Bar

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Carling Cup 3rd Round: Reading V Liverpool Highlights

Highlights from YouTube

4th ROUND CARLING CUP: Reading 2 Liverpool 4

Torres hat-trick inspires Liverpool and sends message to tinkering Benitez
By John Nisbet
Published: 26 September 2007

Liverpool's club record signing, Fernando Torres, sent a timely reminder to his manager, Rafael Benitez, with a stunning hat-trick against Reading.

Torres, omitted from Liverpool's past two Premier League games, struck three times in the second half to earn the Reds a place in the fourth round of the Carling Cup.

Liverpool took the lead in the 22nd minute through Yossi Benayoun, but Bobby Convey levelled five minutes later. Torres restored Liverpool's advantage straight from the restart, only for John Halls to haul Reading level once more. But Torres made the game safe with superb finishes in the 70th and 86th minutes.

"Will he start the next game? We will see. I cannot guarantee anything because I like to see my strikers during the week," said an unrepenant Benitez. "We have four strikers and if I say now that he will play, it will be easy for Wigan. I am only thinking about my team. Our supporters are very clever, they know that I am trying to do the best for the team. "Fernando knows why he was left out. It was because of space. I didn't need to explain it too much. All the players want to play in every game. If you say to me that Dirk Kuyt is a worse striker or Peter Crouch is a worse striker or Andrei Voronin is a worse striker then I would play Torres every game. But because we have very good strikers, I like to choose the strikers for every game and if it is necessary to change I will change".

Reading should have gone in front in the 20th minute when a cross from Halls fell perfectly for Leroy Lita on the edge of the six-yard box, but the Reading striker failed to beat Liverpool's debutant goalkeeper, Charles Itandje.

Lita was left to regret his profligacy when a magnificent piece of individual skill from Benayoun put Liverpool into the lead in the 23rd minute. He went on a solo run before firing a right-footed shot high into the roof of the net.

Reading were level in the 27th minute, though, when Momo Sissoko's clearing header fell to Convey on the edge of the penalty area. The Reading winger's left-foot volley found its way through a ruck of players and past Itandje into the corner of the goal.

Torres, who had required treatment in the opening minute after a tackle by Andre Bikey, went down under a challenge from Michael Duberry in the 34th minute.
The Merseysiders were back in front in the 49th minute when Sebastian Leto sent Torres through the middle with a slide-rule pass. The Spaniard slipped the ball beyond Federici and into the corner of the net.

Reading, though, were far from finished. In the 64th minute Liverpool failed to deal with another Reading corner adequately enough and when the ball fell to Halls, his quick footwork allowed him to send a low shot into the corner of the net for their second equaliser of the night.
But Torres struck for a second time in the 70th minute when he converted a low cross from substitute John Arne Riise. Torres made sure of Liverpool's place in the fourth round when he finished off a fine pass from the substitute Steven Gerrard and rounded Adam Federici for his hat-trick.
Reading (4-4-2): Federici; Halls (Hunt, 80), Duberry, Bikey, Shorey; De la Cruz, Harper, Convey (Kitson, 80), Fae; Long (Henry, 79), Lita. Substitutes not used: Hahnemann (gk), Cisse.
Liverpool (4-4-2): Itandje; Finnan, Carragher, Lucas (Hobbs, 89), Aurelio (Riise, 69); Arbeloa, Benayoun, Sissoko, Leto; Crouch (Gerrard, 77), Torres. Substitutes not used: Martin, Putterill.
Referee: M Atkinson (W Yorkshire)

copied from the pages of the INDEPENDENT

Monday, September 24, 2007

MyRAWK member (theALBERTUS) visits East of Anfield in Singapore

Post visit commentary by Albertus Lim (MyRAWK) on field visit to Singapore: East of Anfield September 22, 2007

On the arrangment made by MyRAWK members in conjunction with East of Anfield in Singapore, I arrived at the much famed home ground of East of Anfield, The Cavern. With feelings of trepidations and nervousness, I was actually sweating more than usual. However, that did not stop my mission of understanding how the EoA operates as a supporters' club for our beloved Liverpool FC on behalf of MyRAWK. The visit also coincides with the game at Anfield against Birmingham City. Huge expectation as they are one of our the bogey teams in the EPL, but in the FA CUP, we thrashed them.

A big thanks and shout out to the members of MyRAWK and the members of EoA for making my visit eventful. First and foremost, Anand and Jan, you guys made my stay worthwhile. Anand, I thank you for being the gracious host. Jan, you made me feel at home at The Cavern. Thanks you guys, really thanks a bunch!

This picture above is the home of the East of Anfield, The Cavern adressed on Boat Quay. Where is it? Well just tell the cab driver to go to Boat Quay.

In honor of our Greek warriors in 2007

Here I am with the flag of the 5 stars of LFC: We're the 5 times European Champs! "We did it 5 times! We did it 5 times!" The fifth star, sorry, that's me!

Yes! Yes! The size does say it all! Me and my Hoegarden with Anand and his Heineken. This picture was taken by another couple who were scousers! YNWA! Also, the beer is my first of 3 pints.

Yes, and from Kuala Lumpur I came to visit the temple of LFC in Singapore, EoA. The banner sums it up - a welcoming message to all LFC fans who travel afar and spend time to watch the game.

It is an EoA tradition to sing YNWA before and after every game. We formed a circle in the bar and swayed left and right to the tune of our hymn. Everyone belted their hearts out for our beloved Liverpool FC. The guy with his scarf proudly raised high above his head is Jan. You lots rock!

And here I am, managing to sneak in a photo shot while belting out YNWA.

Walk on through the rain, Walk on with hope in your heart and YOu'll Never Walk Alone! One can only imagine what Anfield would be like. Imagine this but x 40,000 times! (Not to mention the EoA rendition of Arbeloa, Riise, Torres, Gerrard, Carragher, Best Midfield in the World, Scouser Tommy and Fields of Anfield Road)

And with that, I called it a night. Though we drew the match and feeling hugely disappointed, We'll Never Walk Alone. To my host Anand, a big heart-felt thank you for everything. You made my visit and understanding of EoA worthwhile. Lastly to Jan for the great hospitality and teaching KLites a thing or two about being a dynamic club!

So with that, as a member of MyRAWK, I welcome all and any EoA members to come to KL to visit us at MyRAWK as we look towards more cultural exchanges and visitations. Also, we recommened any LFC member who is going to Singapore and would like to watch a game but do not know where to go to Boat Quay and look for a place called The Cavern. Ask for Anand, Jan or Marek. Its an experience I shall never forget.

EPL Post Match Report: Liverpool vs. Birmingham by Jon Cheah

After the lackluster performance in Porto, the assembled MyRAWKites in M Bar were hoping for a much improved showing from the boys. Well, the football on display did improve (only ever so slightly) but playing against a team that lacked the conviction to attack; the age-old perception of us not being able to break down “weaker” teams again reared its ugly head. Birmingham is certainly turning into a bogey team for us along with the “other” team down the M62.

Starting lineup selection was not help by injuries and Benayoun’s unavailability due to the Jewish Yom Kippur holiday while Torres’s omission certainly raised a few eyebrows among the faithful. However, the selected partnership upfront of Kuyt and Voronin should have been lethal enough to keep the Brummie defense busy. The midfield lineup remains pretty much the same from the mid-week Euro outing while in defense, Arbeloa was switched to right back and Riise restored to the left.

Steve Bruce must have read a few chapters out of Porto’s tactics: his team was hell bent on crowding us out of the midfield and stopping us from winning the second ball. We hardly had any foray into their penalty box with our rather disjointed attack and were reduced to speculative shots from outside. As usual, we were ineffective from corner set pieces again.

Reds everywhere must be sick of the term “playing between the lines,” because that was what we failed to do. The boys upfront couldn’t find space and ended up running into the same piece of turf (and into each other). The closest we were to scoring, was from Gerrard’s side-footer that was cleared off the line and Voronin’s effort that was saved at full stretch by Taylor. The inclusion of Torres (for Babel) and Crouch (for Voronin) brought much more purpose to our attack; highlighted by Torres’s spectacular scissor kick effort and Crouch’s unchallenged header that went over the bar. However, the mix-up in front of goal involving Crouch and Gerrard with only the keeper to beat really summed up our performance.

As if that was not bad enough, Pennant hobbled off three minutes from full time with what looked like a pulled hamstring and was replace by Finnan. We left M Bar feeling rather disappointed and “blue” after three draws; co-incidentally against teams that play in blue.

Remaining undefeated but dropping points against mid-table teams is not part of the plan in our push for that elusive no. 19. Let’s hope we can shake off the problems we’re having and regain back our confidence and swagger in the Carling Cup tie against Reading on Wednesday morning at 2:45 am, live on channel 80 - Astro SuperSports. It'll be the perfect time to rest most of the jaded first team members and introduce the reserves to the ferocity of the English game; especially with this being a cup tie against a Premiership side.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Champions League Post Match Review: FC Porto 1 Liverpool 1 BOSS MAD ABOUT 'BAD' DISPLAY

Rafa in a rage as Pennant sees red
David Maddock Reports From Oporto 19/09/2007 (Daily Mirror)

Rafa Benitez insisted that Jermaine Pennant must learn from a foolish dismissal that almost cost Liverpool dear in Portugal last night.

But the Reds boss admitted: "We were really very bad in that first half, there are no excuses. We gave the ball away too easily and made too many mistakes."

Pennant was sent off for two rash challenges that earned yellow cards, the second an unwise lunge to try to keep the ball in play when he should have stayed on his feet. That put the out-of-sorts Merseysiders under intense pressure against Porto, who looked quicker, stronger and more determined.

But somehow they survived to steal a point that gets their Champions League group campaign off to a fortunate start. A relieved Benitez warned Pennant afterwards: "It was a correct red card. He made a mistake and he will learn from the experience so maybe it will be positive for him in the future.
"He didn't need to make a challenge in that area."

Benitez was puzzled by a poor display from his side, after a terrible start to the game where they simply failed to pass to each other. Porto were gifted the lead from the penalty spot, and the English club only clawed their way back into the contest through a Dirk Kuyt effort from a setpiece. But they were lucky, and even Kuyt admitted as much. "We have to be pleased with a draw, because the first half wasn't good at all.

"We had problems trying to pass to each other, and we couldn't string three or four passes together. But we have escaped with a point, and that is a good result, because they are a strong side, and this game may prove to be the toughest one we will face in the group."
Benitez added: "We cannot afford a performance like that again, but maybe that was our 'get out of jail card'."

Any team that creates just one opportunity to their opponents' 14, one corner to 10 and virtually no coherent forward play and yet gains a draw, must fancy their chances of progressing some distance in the competition.

Chastised for resting his 'star players' and dropping points at Portsmouth, Benitez restored the big guns to his starting line up, only to see them fire blanks. Maybe that adds weight to his argument that he must pick teams to suit each individual circumstance.

And yet it was hard to leave Estadio Dragao last night without the uneasy feeling that Liverpool were undermined by the six changes from the weekend.

From the start they were as edgy as the queue outside a branch of Northern Rock.
Keeper Pepe Reina rescued his back four with the rather painful use of his face to save.
Sami Hyypia was a surprise inclusion in the Liverpool defence, and perhaps his lack of games at the top level in recent times has blunted his match fitness.

The big Finn looked slow to respond when Ricardo Quaresma played a teasing ball in behind him, allowing Tarik Sektioui to steal into the box. Reina darted from his line to try to smother the danger, but only succeeded in dragging the little Turk to the ground for a penalty barely nine minutes into the game.

Local hero Lucho Gonzalez converted with ease to set the alarm bells ringing.
Yet Liverpool are nothing if not resilient in Europe.
And it was Hyypia who typified that spirit.
For all their sublime touch and audacious skill, Porto have a weakness at the back from set-pieces, and that was exploited ruthlessly by the centre-back.
On 17 minutes, Hyypia drifted away from his marker at the far post and headed back across goal, where Kuyt planted a header firmly above the keeper's despairing grasp into the roof of the net.

Fc Porto: Nuno, Bruno Alves, Paulo Assuncao, Quaresma, Lucho Gonzalez, Lopez, Bosingwa, Fucile, Joao Paulo, Raul Meireles, Sektioui.

Liverpool: Reina, Finnan, Hyypia, Arbeloa, Carragher, Pennant, Mascherano, Gerrard, Babel, Torres, Kuyt.

16 FOULS 24

Man Of The Match: Quaresma

Goal highlights courtesy of YouTube

Porto FC: Lucho Gonzalez's goal:

Liverpool FC: Dirk Kuyt's goal:

Monday, September 17, 2007

Champions League Here We Come - Porto v Liverpool


A friendly reminder to all Reds that our 07/08 UEFA Champions League campaign starts this coming Wednesday morning, 19th September. Matchday 1 proceeds with an away trip to Estadio do Dragao against Porto. Kick off is at 02:30 am, ESPN - astro channel 81.

Match Report: Liverpool v Portsmouth By Will Tan

Anticipation for our visit to Fratton Park was high as we sought to cement our place at the top of the table. Though Portsmouth are never an easy proposition (them holding us to a draw during the pre-season game in Hong Kong underlines their resilience), many supporters were hoping for Liverpool to continue the momentum from the “Demolition Derby” a couple of weeks ago.

However, this was a game of few chances especially in the first half. Carragher returned from injury and was given the armband in the absence of Steven Gerrard who was benched (along with Fernando Torres) after their international excursions. Apart from a few speculative long range hits, there wasn’t much to bother David James while Pompey also struggled to create scoring chances on the other end.

That is until the linesman decided to spice things up by flagging for some alleged shirt-pulling antics by Aberloa on Kanu. For the third time this season, Liverpool were on the receiving end of a somewhat soft penalty but unlike the Villa and Chelsea games, Reina pulled off a spectacular save to deny Kanu from the spot. Sense of justice prevailed and the assembled Kopites at Mbar let out a collective sigh of relief. Cue grateful gulping of beer.

Game opened up slightly more in the second half with both Crouch and Voronin striking the woodwork. The former was forced into a back-heel volley as a cross came behind him and the ball sailed over James only for it to clip the upright. Our Pony Tail from Ukraine carved a shooting chance from nothing out of sheer doggedness but again the ball clipped the wrong side of the bar for a goal kick. Heart in throat moment came when the ever lively John Utaka got to a ball which evaded Carragher and Agger and had the goal at his mercy. Mercifully for us, he shot just wide of the goal. Another collective sigh of relief and more gulping of beer as anxiety began to creep in. We had already heard that Man Utd had beaten Everton 1-0 and were hoping for some sub action to kick things up a notch.

Rafa duly obliged and brought on our dynamic duo of Stevie G and Torres (for Pennant and Crouch respectively) that had an immediate impact on the proceedings. A trademark Stevie G surging run into the box split open the Pompey defence and he slid a beautifully weighted pass to Torres on the left of the box. Voronin had made a run into the six yard area and Torres could have picked him up for a simple tap in but instead opted to blast the shot wide. This time it was the synchronized slapping of foreheads that was heard around Mbar accompanied by a frustrated “ooooooooh, f@#$%@# close!”.

That was as close as we got in an altogether forgettable and drab exhibition of football. Two points dropped and knocked off the top by Arsenal. Let’s hope our boys are whole lot sharper when we face Porto on Wednesday morning and Birmingham City this Saturday evening at 10pm.

Remember, WE NEVER WALK ALONE, so calling all you Reds out there, stand up and be counted.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

LFC Songs & Chants to Learn

It's good to learn a couple of other LFC songs and chants (besides the mandatory YNWA) so you can join in when the gatherings starts to sing and sway to the Anfield beat. Click the links below to download the lyrics or to see videos of Kopites singing them.

Chants and Song Lyrics in PDF

Fields of Anfield Road

Poor Scouser Tommy

Oh Campione!

The Best Midfield in the World

Steve Gerrard, Gerrard & Too Good to be True

We Love You Liverpool

A Team of Carraghers

Xabi Alonso

Monday, September 3, 2007

Match Report: Liverpool v Derby County by Bing Loon

After securing our second away win of the season at the Stadium of Light, confidence was high and some had bravely predicted a ‘pesta gol’ against another recently promoted side – Derby County.

The Rams started the match really well by constantly pressuring our
boys when we had the ball and the first half hour was scrappy to say the least. Just when the assembled souls at Mbar began venting their frustrations at an increasingly victimised screen, Xabi Alonso curled in a freekick from 40 yards which evaded everyone’s touch before reaching the back of the net. A thoroughly well deserved and well timed slice of luck (lest we forget, championships are not won without a massive helping hand from lady luck).

Last action in the first half also had Derby keeper picking the ball out of the net again. Goal number two came courtesy of some sublime skill from Ryan Babel who was having a relatively quite game till then. After receiving the ball inside the box, Babel dummies two defenders and with a body-popping drop of the shoulder sent the keeper the wrong way before lashing a shot into the top left hand corner!Floodgates then opened in the second half. Torres used his unnerving acceleration to great effect as he beat three Rams before picking his spot with his weaker peg for his 1st goal infront of the Kop. Number four arrived via Alonso again as he side footed a loose ball from the edge of the box after Benayoun had been brought down with a crunching tackle. Before the shouts of "penalty!" could be heard, ball was nestled inside the Derby goal.

Sub Voronin also joined the party with virtually his first touch as he pounced on a rebound after Derby keeper could only parry a stinger from the tireless Dirk Kuyt. Rout was completed when Torres robbed a clumsy Rams defender who let a back pass stray a little too far; our record signing pays back another chunk of his transfer fee by coolly walking the ball into the net after rounding Derby’s hapless goalie.

The only low point of the night was the somewhat disappointing attendance at MBar. We will put it down to the long weekend and many balik kampong, holiday etc. But here’s hoping to more results like this and a better turn out for future games. Remember, WE NEVER WALK ALONE, so calling all you Reds out there, stand up and be counted.

"Pesta Goal" - You Asked For It, You Got It!

Below is the match highlight from the riot we dished out to Derby last Saturday nite.