Really? You Couldn't See It Coming?

It's very difficult to explain," said the Scot. "We played some fantastic football. We were deserving of our lead and we weren't even under pressure. With a bit of care and better finishing we might have been three or four up at half-time.

You just couldn't see a goal coming from them and maybe the luck they didn't get against Bolton they got here.

(Source: BBC Sport, Mark Hughes says fightback will give QPR survival belief)

- Kenny Dalglish

Emphasis is mine.

Look, I know crazy things happen. And this is just one game.

But Kenny, isn't it your job to see a goal could be coming? As your team's leader / manager, aren't you supposed to prepare for the unknown?

As a Liverpool supporter, this stings doubly since there was a remote possibility of catching 4th place. Remote, but with a good run and with the quality of opponents over the next few days / weeks, the possibility was there.

No more.

No 4th place this year.

And I'm not sure how comfortable I am with the future with the current leadership. I'm not privy to practices or injuries or confidence levels, but there are many questions on the lineup. It's a long season, yes, but these points are incredibly important.

Yet, there's no consistency with the lineup, or even the formation.

Brutal loss.

And likely a brutal next few weeks and months.

Liverpool painted them in a bit of a corner by hiring Dalglish. Yes, he's a fan favorite and a huge piece of Liverpool's history, and he's probably the right man for this time (ie, 'the transition').

But a bad hire for the long-term.

The New York Yankees were in the same situation a few years ago. Joe Torre wasn't coming back and the next, logical coach was Don Mattingly. There was a big push to bring "Donny Baseball" in as the manager.

But they went with Joe Girardi instead (and won the World Series shortly after).

Why didn't they hire Mattingly?

They were afraid of the backlash when they had to remove him.

With this latest loss, and response, now I'm less worried about the backlash aimed at Liverpool than it eventually being aimed at Kenny.

Looking back at the post-Hodgson breakdown of potential successors, this was a summary of Kenny:

Second comings are rarely a good idea, as Kevin Keegan found on his return to Newcastle. Nor is it a good idea to return to football after a long break. The greatest managers sustain themselves by evolution, much of it almost unconscious, the accumulation of minor tweaks made on a day-to-day level eventually making a major difference. Dalglish has been involved in football to the extent of doing some scouting and acting as an ambassador for Liverpool, but without hands-on experience it's very easy to get left behind. At Liverpool, Blackburn and Newcastle, he was a classic 4-4-2 man, usually playing one wide midfielder tucked in and the other as a more orthodox winger. But that was a long time ago.

(Source: Sports Illustrated, Hodgson's struggles raise question of possible successors at Liverpool)

 

A very long time ago, it seems.

 

The HBR Series is great, and this book in particular asks the right questions for a better you.

On Managing Yourself

(This is an affiliate link to Amazon.)