Football’s ability to destroy the finest spreadsheets


I watched Liverpool lose their fifth consecutive home game in the EPL last night.  One of the best teams in Europe over the last four years, which famously benefits from fan motivation, sit seventh in the table and out of a European spot for next season.

Even on current form, Liverpool would destroy Celtic, but the parallels in the two clubs decline are clear.  Virgil van Dijk’s injury enforced absence at Anfield had as big an impact on Liverpool as Fraser Forster’s loss to Celtic.  Both sides lost significant numbers through injury and, if anything, Celtic fans have a greater reputation for encouraging their team than Liverpool’s.

Jurgen Klopp, the urbane football intellectual, looks lost.  We see unflattering bouts of temper as he struggles to understand where his Midas Touch went.  Jurgen is among the game’s very best; Neil Lennon should take comfort that what happened to him can happen to anyone.

You and I have often said that a team operating at 90% is unrecognisable from the same players at full tilt.  When one or two things go wrong at the margins, an entire edifice can crumble.  Watching Liverpool also suffer does not sweeten the pill, but it is a lesson that football can destroy even the finest spreadsheets.

Click Here for Comments >

About Author

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 4
  6. 5
  7. 6
  8. 7
  9. ...
  10. 14

  1. there are 3 clips in that link, the wee fella paddy singing in clip 2 , he looks 8, and signs like a 60 year old whiskey drinking 40 woodbines a day man

  2. Timmy 7






    There is no coherent economic case for independence, if there was the SNP cult would be shouting it from the rooftops & plastering it on every billboard they could buy, by ‘skimming’ from the many billions handed to them over the last year.



    The UKGOV furlough scheme protecting c1million Scottish jobs & one of Labour’s policies, Tax Credits, have given more to the Scottish people, than the SNP have ever considered in their eight plus years of existence.



    The bulk of new ‘SNP converts couldn’t live without Tax Credits – they have selective memory and will be the first to be hit, in the unlikely case of seperation.



    This week has shown irrefutably that the SNP are a cult, a close brethren, who will turn on anyone, even their own, if they’re criticised.

  3. a few years ago i was coming through Bearsden when I spied some roman escavations across the road from waitrose, being an extremely boring guy i parked up and told daughter i am going to see them.



    crossed the busy road, had a wee dauner around them, knowing my history i thoughtmust be something to do with the antonie wall, why didnt i notice this before or know about it i thought to meself.



    oh a plaque ………………



    “copy of the roman display from the glasgow garden festival”



    back to car, told daughter,



    thats cos your a nugget dad.

  4. Spidey @ 5.14



    Agree with much of that post.



    Lennon’s strengths were thus diluted, and things came to a head when we scrapped the “sell high” part of the strategy to chase the 10. An inability to get the players to match previous standards, poor recruitment and morale, a lack of clarity about how



    I’m not convinced we scrapped the sell high part I think Edouard and one or two others’ heads and or tools went down, in the first lock down window because there were no bids. The club try to make the no sales aspect a plus, but sales were well down in every country in Europe and had there been an Eddy bid for example, I think we’d have taken it.



    The wantaways and stayedtoolongs either way combined with other factors you mentioned and including the stuff we don’t know about yet? all contributed, to the disaster. Good sides break up, we didn’t, and Paul67’s Liverpool comparison is bang on, for me. Neil Lennon ran right out of luck in the transfer market, and all in had too many go’s at signing players, especially full back.



    All before we even got into the season proper.

  5. Main BBC news about to confirm the continuation lie – a club formed in 2012 haven’t won the title for 10 years – where in fact they’ve never win the title.

  6. Hope PL and the board are happy that they are going for 55. . according to BBC news..they came back from liquidation. …easily stopped narrative but DD and PL didn’t want that

  7. Hi Bhoys



    That photo if you clicked the link is inside Jack Dempsey’s bar New York C.S.C.




  8. Drew1967


    If you want to post a picture then you can do it via Flickr as Tonyrome has done.

  9. When Eddy moves he’ll go for between 25 and 28 million quid.



    Hun meeja are trying to sell him cheaply in an attempt to to hinder our fightback next season.




  10. BSR



    “You’ll never walk alone whether it be Jurgen or Lurgan”




  11. Gene on 5th March 2021 6:36 pm






    If you want to post a picture then you can do it via Flickr as Tonyrome has done.






    You have to make an account and it’s not as straight forward as I thought that’s why I never replied to Drew1967




  12. Tony


    I’ve done it – thought it wasn’t too bad – you need to set up an account. Just pointing Drew to an option.

  13. I just caught the tail end of the Sevco report on National BBC . What was it about?

  14. Hot smoked


    Although they were liquidated they’re going for 55 😫


    Disgraceful from the national broadcaster

  15. Saint Stivs 5.04pm


    Thanks for posting the link . Cracking articles and a photo I’ve never seen that brought back happy memories from traveling in the Patna , Packy Bonner bus .


    One sadly missed dude is no longer with us and missed our 2nd nine .


    Perspective in a season that’s brought so much disappointment.


    I’ve shared the article. Thanks again for posting. HH

  16. Gene


    Thanks and indeed it is (disgraceful) and sickening as well.


    Cheerio for now.

  17. GENE



    cheers mate.il try tmrw.



    On the bev tonight.god knows what i might show yeez all!!

  18. BSR – I think in Eddy’s case we were saying £40m or nothing and that put buyers off in, as you say, a generally depressed market. If we took a similar approach then its likely others were in the same boat. We’ll never know I guess and there’s probably other stuff we’ll never know. You’re right about Lennon’s transfer dealings – very few good buys this season – only Turnbull has really impressed and he was basically deferred from last year. Even last year’s weren’t great on the whole.



    I agree there’s a comparison in that good teams went bad. I just disagree on how much of an impact COVID was for both teams. Empires fall and it’s done now. We move on and hopefully have learned a valuable lesson.

  19. SPIDEY101 on 5TH MARCH 2021 3:01 PM



    “Celtic40me – yes it is damning of Klopp’s system, but given the success he’s brought and that it took a once in a generation pandemic and injury crisis to lead to failure it’s probably on the right side of risk-reward for a team in Liverpool’s situation.”



    A large part of our failure can be explained by decisions made by Lenny, that’s inarguable, but Lenny had his own success before this season, he had never failed to win the league before now, and the pandemic has affected our club far more than Liverpool. A large part of this is perception – Klopp’s halo has only recently slipped, Lenny’s had horns for some of us since before he got the job second time round.




    The point I’m largely making here is that most of our problems are self-inflicted and, while the circumstances may have had an impact, it’s not comparable to the impact on Liverpool. Even the most significant impacts of COVID – Bolingoli and suspended fixtures and the isolation of most of the squad post-Dubai – could have been avoided but for bad decisions by individuals within the club.



    But not Lenny. Unless I’m mistaken Klopp hasn’t lost a single player to Covid, he hasn’t been able to deal with COVID while others, as you’ve suggested, have flourished. If it’s as simple as that then that’s an indictment of his ability.

  20. I think we woulda made our anger felt but I also think we support the team better than the huns……….



    Thems woulda growled at the likes of Goldson and Tav (pen) till they scarpered…………Fat Charlie would have been riot material for the knuckle-draggers. Closed doors has had the least effect on thems – when you compare both teams.

  21. The remarkable penalty situation, especially when allied with the no red cards, no kovid etc etc etc……………..



    There’s a story.




  22. Hrvatski Jim,



    I’ve received a reply from my MP’s rep re Der Hun’s administrators –



    Dear Mr Hartson,



    I am replying to you as one of Christina’s caseworkers. I am sorry for the delay in coming back to you, our office has been inundated with enquiries coming from matters arising relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.



    On the issue of the wrongful prosecution of administrators at Rangers Football club, the Lord Advocate spoke to the Scottish Parliament on 09 February 2021. Details of that can be seen in the official report, which I have included a link to: Official Report – Parliamentary Business : Scottish Parliament



    While speaking to parliament, he had indicated his support for an independent inquiry into the wrongful prosecution.



    On 10 February 2021, the Scottish Parliament passed the following amended motion:



    That the Parliament notes the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service’s admission of malicious prosecutions of David Whitehouse and Paul Clark, formerly administrators of Rangers Football Club PLC; notes that £24,086,250 of taxpayers money was paid out to Mr Whitehouse and Mr Clark for compensation and legal fees; notes that this situation is unprecedented in Scottish legal history; further notes that the Lord Advocate and COPFS have committed to supporting public and Parliamentary accountability and notes that legal proceedings are ongoing; agrees that there should be a transparent process of inquiry, once all related legal proceedings are completed; agrees that the precise mechanism of inquiry, which should be led by a judge, should be determined once all related legal proceedings have concluded; understands that further compensation is also to be paid on behalf of the Chief Constable, and believes that the remit of any inquiry should include examination of the role and involvement of Police Scotland.


    Motions, Questions and Answers Search – Parliamentary Business : Scottish Parliament



    I hope that this information assures you that this situation will be properly looked at, to ensure answers can be found as to why this happened.




    Kind regards,




    Neil Robinson


    Senior Caseworker to


    Christina McKelvie MSP


    for Hamilton, Larkhall & Stonehouse



    Links –







  23. Celtic40me – I think Lenny made his fair share of errors this year – not drilling set piece defending, not picking the same goalkeeper for more than a few weeks at a time, playing midfielders up front, seeing Turnbull perform well in a 10 role and then moving him out of position so Rogic could come back – I just feel they weren’t COVID related.


    And I take the point on Klopp – it is an indictment on him he couldn’t adapt in the way Pep did. But we’re it not for the pandemic I think he wouldn’t have needed to change so dramatically and he could evolve more gradually.


    Anyway – the main thing I take issue with is the sense among the club and others like Paul67 (and Kennedy also mentioned it today) that it was all Covid’s fault. It wasn’t – we were just a shambles.

  24. IniquitousIV on



    A few meteorologists not called Big Judith.


    Only for those with an interest in the weather.

  25. SPIDEY101 on 5TH MARCH 2021 8:29 PM



    Anyway – the main thing I take issue with is the sense among the club and others like Paul67 (and Kennedy also mentioned it today) that it was all Covid’s fault. It wasn’t – we were just a shambles



    That’s a huge assumption on your part, private thinking and public pronouncement are two very different things. Surely no one believes that the club and Paul think it’s all down to Covid



    “A shambles” fails to take into consideration everything you’re telling us has been the main factors in Liverpool’s failure. It’s a very binary take.

  26. COVID-19 is not to blame for the most of our failings this season. But without it the absolute disastrous run of results in January doesn’t happen. We would still be in a league challenge.



    There are other instances and I did say before the season began to celtic minded pals and family that the empty stadiums could be problematic for us. I think it has but others will take a different view.



    Loads of factors really, but totally discounting covid is as flawed as blaming it for everything (which i don’t think anyone actually is).

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 4
  6. 5
  7. 6
  8. 7
  9. ...
  10. 14