Download PDF by Paul Tomkins: Above Us Only Sky: Liverpool FC's Global Revolution

By Paul Tomkins

ISBN-10: 0955636701

ISBN-13: 9780955636707

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The same applies to his time with the Dutch national team, from which he was ultimately expelled. Or does van Nistelrooy represent a certain kind of player, one who plays for himself (and does a damn good job of it) but who ultimately, in some subtle way, disrupts the team? Let’s be clear: any striker who scores goals sees his contribution benefit his team; after all, the goals don’t count merely in the top-scorers chart. And van Nistelrooy’s time in England did coincide with the best Arsenal team ever seen, who played sublime football, and then Chelsea rampant on the heady mix of Abramovich’s cash and Mourinho’s bravado.

A great achievement, undoubtedly. But when he arrived in this country the difficulty in repeating that feat was that the two rich clubs in England also happened to be more focused and better-managed (from top to bottom) than the two Spanish giants, who seemed to have too much of a self-destruct mentality –– certainly when it came to the hiring and firing of coaches, interference from the board, and the existence of a ‘superstar’ culture amongst their players. While Barcelona and Real Madrid had since come to terms with their excesses of the early part of the millennium, and briefly improved their professionalism and, indeed, shown some sanity, the Premiership landscape remains the same as when Benítez arrived.

A week later, with the Reds 1-0 up and in control against Chelsea in the first big encounter of the season, Rob Styles awarded one of the most bizarre spot kicks ever seen, as Florent Malouda threw himself at Steve Finnan when the ball had already passed. The game was drawn as a result, and Styles later apologised, admitting his error had affected the game. But could it also affect the league title race? He later booked Michael Essien for a second time, but having realised he’d previously booked he seemed to change track, and held the card aloft at John Terry –– something he’d already done 30 seconds earlier.

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Above Us Only Sky: Liverpool FC's Global Revolution by Paul Tomkins


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