Torres: Support is “something special”

Fernando Torres has returned some of the compliments the Liverpool supporters have been paying him over the course of his electric first season in the English league. Torres signed from Atletico Madrid last summer and in scoring his 24th league goal on Sunday broke himself a record. He is now the most prolific foreign player in a Premier League debut season.

Fernando TorresHe says that a big part of his success is down to the encouragement and support of the Anfield faithful: “The supporters back the players, regardless of who is out on the pitch. They enjoy watching their key players play, because Liverpool has great players, but Liverpool will always be a team.”

There were times this season when it wasn’t the case, as the discontent during a run of poor form could be heard clearly from the stands, but on the whole Liverpool fans don’t turn on their own team: “The fans get behind the side even when things are not working out, and they are always there until the death. That is the major difference with football back in Spain. If a team is not doing well, then it is because the players do not deserve to be wearing the club’s colours.

Speaking to the Liverpool Echo, Torres went on: “At Liverpool, if a player is wearing their shirt, it is because he deserves it. The fans ask for effort and dedication, and their support is something special, something that stays with you.”

He also had some thanks for his team-mates: “I was really looking forward to coming here. It was a challenge and I knew that a lot would be expected from me. Luckily, everything has worked out well from day one, and my team-mates have helped out, and I owe them all an awful lot.  I have always believed that you must give and take. Upon arriving at a new place you must want to learn and also be ready to listen to advice. At Liverpool, we all want the same. We all help one another and give our best to reach our goals. It is a very professional working environment here.”

He was asked what he missed of home: “I don’t actually miss the weather, though I do miss a little being around my friends and family, but they are nearly always over so the distance seems far less. At the end of the day, it is only two hours by plane.”

Meanwhile it’s being reported today that Liverpool will play a match against Pepe Reina’s former club Villareal at their El Madrigal ground. This game was agreed as part of the deal that brought Reina to Anfield ready for the start of the 2005-06 season and although no firm date has been set, it is expected to happen in the last week of July.  Villareal just finished the season as runners-up in La Liga, earning themselves an automatic place in the Champions League.

The Reds are expected to head to Switzerland again for their pre-season training camp, with friendlies against relatively local teams likely to be arranged nearer the time. No plans are currently in place for any long-haul trips overseas as part of any pre-season promotion of the club.

After calling for action from the board to get his transfer plans moving as quickly as possible, Rafa Benitez has now suggested he may wait until the outcome of talks over a FIFA plan to limit the number of overseas players allowed on the field per team at one time. The ‘6+5’ rule is to be discussed at the FIFA Congress on May 29 and 30.

The Reds boss said, referring to two English players expected to be sold: “We know what are the rules and we will try to do things whatever happens with FIFA. Crouch and Pennant are under contract and they are our players. We are waiting now. We know they have been playing well and a lot of clubs are interested in them so we will wait and see. But they are under contract.”

Rafa isn’t a fan of the proposals: “I feel the key is for the fans to see the best players on the pitch. It is clear – in the past you would talk about a lot of local players but all the teams want to sign players and the best players come from all over the world.”

With the recent hints from Rafa that there may be a solution to the ownership situation on the horizon, some are reading this apparent decision to hold back as based on something other than the risk the FIFA proposals represent. But whether Tom Hicks, George Gillett and DIC are about to settle their differences or not, the FIFA president Sepp Blatter is sure his proposals can’t be blocked by European laws: “Contrary to what may have been said, the ‘6+5’ rule does not contravene the European Labour Law on the freedom of movement. Clubs will still be free to take on as many foreign players as they want.

“When a match kicks off however, they will have to have six players on the pitch who are eligible for the national team of the country in question. Furthermore, the ‘6+5’ rule supports another European Law, namely regarding having the broadest and fairest possible competition and restricting the concentration of finances and economic monopolies.”

76 thoughts on “Torres: Support is “something special””

  1. It’s the same bullshit time and time again. Just when one so called deadline approaches if what the independent reports is true something occurs that creates a new deadline further down the line.

    I have gone beyond the point of rage. Its clear no outside bidder will be allowed intervene.

    It is also clear that neither Hicks nor Gillette have the type of money necessary to buy the other out, if they had one would have made an offer by now.

    So instead of the two sitting down to work this out they will let fans suffer by dragging this further down the road and I assume long in to 2009. In fact this will most likely continue until such time that the banks will force a resolution. They have ruined one season and are prepared to destroy the preparation of another.

    How there is one ounce of support for either of these men defies belief. Both have done so badly at owning a 50% of the club I would shudder to think of the consequences should either get their hands on the lot. We have become a laughing stock. Even Aston Villa are able to have a pop at the derisory player exchange offer Rafa has made for Barry. To quote MON “Liverpool have put in an offer that, well, it’s almost debatable whether it is an offer”.
    The situation has become an embarrassment.

    Forget what’s happening outside the club; forget who is waiting in the wings. The situation at Liverpool is clear; we have two owners who refuse to work together but cant afford to work alone. Instead of doing what’s best for the club and engaging in some sort of dialogue both men have shown their contempt towards every Liverpool fan and willingly allowed the future and success of the club to be placed in serious jeopardy for want of personal gain and out of fear of a damaged pride.

  2. @ Anthony & Julie: be careful now!!…we lawyers are big headed as it is….don’t know what to do when faced with this double barrage of compliments from you and Julie.

    btw for one nanosecond ; is it a compliment to be compared to someone appearing in a certain show on the Beeb (sorry folks no free advertising from me!!) 😉

  3. Right on Juan. If this mess isn’t sorted in the next few months Rafa will be gone by this time next year followed by the best players.
    Once the slide starts it will be difficult to stop, remember Leeds United and Notts Forrest.

  4. Jofrad,

    You’ve posted three messages – all completely negative. We all know the seriousness of the ownership suituation so I don’t think it’s necessary to be a complete doom and gloom merchant. And Liverpool will never be another Leeds or Notts Forest. We have far too much support for that ti happen.

    Try and be a bit more positive – please!

  5. Ray,
    I’m a natural optimist but I’m not the only one completely beaten by this ownership issue. As long as Hicks has a say in the running of Liverpool I feel the worst. This man is very very dangerous to the club.

  6. Just heard music to my ears, voronin is on his way back to Germany. LFC will also not end up like Leeds as Leeds borrowed 80 million to buy players whilst LFC’s loans are not secured against players, unlike Leeds.

    Anyone got any predictions for the UEFA cup? 100000 rangers fans in Manchester. 13000 have official tickets, 30000 have tickets 70000 locked out. The highest ever support to follow a team away, Celtic where the previous record holders. Rangers fans in Liverpool and Blackpool as there is no where to stay in Manchester. That is what should have happened last year in Athens instead of UEFA saying that the LFC fans where in the wrong.

  7. @Anthony Fakir: 2-1 Rangers. My guess. Based on nothing more than the number of supporters they have.

  8. I reckon 3 – 2 Rangers. I agree the fans will win it for Rangers, Zen fans out numbered 10/1.
    Reckon it will be a good game. These got beat by the Blues.

  9. Hi Jofrad,

    “I’m a natural optimist…”

    Bloody ‘ell! I’d hate to read your stuff when you’re depressed! .

    Take a tip from an old(ish) bloke. If you have control over a situation you’re not happy with then resolve it asap. If you have no control then don’t get worried about it as there’s nothing you can do.

    If Hicks gains full control it would be better than it is now. At least we would have a single person to make the decisions. If DIC gain control it would be better than it is now.

    The current situation is not sustainable and there will be changes forced on people by banks. One way or another it will be resolved. The only question is when.

    So sit back and forget about it. Fill your mind with other things. I suspect there are things going on we will learn about soon. Rafa wouldn’t have said what he did if he didn’t know something.

    As someone said 11 years ago… Things can only get better!

  10. I think this is the Month that we will have info on who takes over the Club!! We cannot funtion with two boss´s who for the better part don´t like each other, and i doubt that it would change all that much if DIC came in as a 50% owner.. Hicks doesn´t like DIC either, and he wouldn´t take kindly to been pushed around by them. For me it has to be one owner, pure and simple

  11. I heard Alan Jackson on BBC radio Merseyside say that he believes that all this nonsense is just the two yanks tring to wangle more out of DIC.

    That’s not the case, Anthony. Gillett wanted to leave. Hicks blocked his sale. Gillett got mad. Hicks later offered even more than DIC, but Gillett, probably out of pride and anger, chose not to sell to Hicks and for now has decided he wants to stay around. So, for now, these are your owners, and life goes on.

  12. “That’s not the case, Anthony. Gillett wanted to leave. Hicks blocked his sale. Gillett got mad. Hicks later offered even more than DIC, but Gillett, probably out of pride and anger, chose not to sell to Hicks and for now has decided he wants to stay around. So, for now, these are your owners, and life goes on.”

    No sources. Just wild speculation. As always.

  13. Anthony, I’ll make it tricky for you. David Beckham, Jimmy White, Brian Lara and I all share the same birthday but obviously in different years.

    I was 24 when Beckham was born. Hope you got O-Level Maths! .

  14. Dawg your nothing but a fucking parasite taking some kind of glee from the fucked up mess our club finds itself in. Your the only poster on here who gets kicks out of all the shit going on. Your nothing more than a shit stirrer with your bullshit claims. Why don’t you fuck off and post elsewhere instead of rejoicing in the shit we are in. Just a fucking parasite with a limited knowledge of yank sport which most people don’t give a shit about because its a joke ie a world series involving 2 countries.

    I appreciate some of you maybe offended by the language and this post may not get put up but these are my views and I will not apologise for them when some prick gets kicks out of a club facing decline.

  15. Fred I was thinking the same. Here we are real Liverpool fans living through a nightmare and then we have to put up with an outsider constantly stirring and obviously getting his kicks from it!!

    Go home Dowg unless you have something productive to say.

  16. I think the Dawg’s explanation is most likely because it fits in with what owners etc have actually said rather than what’s been speculated (or spun) in the press. Coupled with that (if you believe him) he is friendly with the Hicks family. Whether we like what he says or not, for now we should be grateful for his version of events, because to date its seems the closest to the truth.

    I agree with Ray’s sentiments. If you can’t change it, don’t stress about it. No point carrying on like Chicken Little, the sky’s not likely to fall in any time soon.

  17. Nice try, Fred, but I too would love to have it wrapped up immediately. It’s a ridiculous, unnecessary hassle and waste of time for a close friend. All being caused by one spiteful clown who doesn’t even want to be around any longer.

  18. Fred I was thinking the same. Here we are real Liverpool fans living through a nightmare and then we have to put up with an outsider constantly stirring and obviously getting his kicks from it!!

    No kicks from it at all, Stephen. I was just pointing out the fact of the matter. I’d love to have the ordeal over with and a month ago it looked like it would be. But George Gillett’s pride got in the way and doesn’t appear like it will be leaving for awhile.

  19. Hop, at this stage, I don’t find this hypothetical chinese whispers version of Tom Hicks point of view (a.k.a the dawgs posts) to be particularly insightful or constructive.

    At best it’s tiresome and at worst it completely insults my intelligence as a supporter of Liverpool.

    Admittedly though I do have the option not to read them.

  20. I’m standing beside Fred on this one – what’s the legitimacy of posts from a Hicks apologist who is not here to engage in thoughtful debate but only to tow the party line, regardless of its relationship to the truth. By his own admission, he’s been told by Tommy Jr. what he can and can’t say here, which sends up the red flag that his comments have less to do with opinion and thoughtful consideration than they do with spewing propaganda. Does anyone genuinely believe that this poster is giving us the “inside scoop”? Only insofar as he provides the service of a free press release advocating the Hicks family’s interests. And what’s the value of that to anyone but Hicks?

  21. It’s easy enough to ignore “Dawg” if you don’t like what he says.

    If Dawg was posting as “Birkenhead Budgie” and trying to convince us all that he was a lifelong Red then I think it would be different, but he’s been clear from fairly early on why he’s a supporter of the Hicks camp as much as he is.

    If Foster Gillett’s former neighbour wants to start posting as “Montreal Mouse”, that’s fine. If Sameer al-Ansari’s neice wants to start posting as “Dubai Duck” that’s OK too. Sheik Mohammed can post as “Anfielder” if he likes. (Only kidding).

    If they also tell us their connection then we can use whatever sized measure of salt we think we need when we read their comments.

    Anyway – something to chew on.

  22. Jim, I agree with your point relating to the dawg.

    Anfielders crime was worse, in the sense that he tried to mislead us into having conversations with fictional people (although his posts were much more readable!).

    Great link from deep within the web there:

    “In the end, the dream can’t become reality without the right financial package.”

    In our case shouldn’t that be nightmare instead of dream?

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