TEAMtalk guest Rich Kitto urges fans to stay patient with Brendan Rodgers and FSG, despite slamming Liverpool's transfer dealings this summer.
"We have only one driving ambition at Liverpool and that is the quest to win the Premier League" John W. Henry, owner of Liverpool FC.
After a week in which Liverpool let a £35million striker out the door without bringing a replacement in, then succumb to a 2-0 defeat at home to Arsenal with an insipid and tame performance, the comments of Henry that they will deliver "what every long-term supporter of Liverpool Football Club aches for" must feel like a chronic pain.
Whilst there are clearly issues at Liverpool, namely around the striking options at the club, fans must not lose sight as it's imperative for them to remain part of the cause in backing Brendan Rodgers, the players, and the American owners. This is a long-term project, and supporters have to remember that they are no longer supporting the Liverpool of the 80s.
I wrote an article last week bemoaning the nature of fickle football fans, but this is an aspect of the game that will never change. Last week, after an extremely impressive and lively performance against the current champions Manchester City, and comments from Yaya Toure that it was the "hardest game I have ever played since being in the Premiership", there was somewhat of a buoyant atmosphere around Anfield that Rodgers plans were showing fruition. Perhaps that's what made the defeat to Arsenal such a bitter pill to swallow.
The manner of the defeat, plus the lack of expected transfer activity has yet again put the Reds across the back pages, as once more the current owners of the once 'behind closed doors' club have had to take matters into the public arena. An open letter from Henry released a few days ago covered everything from the clubs inability to sign anyone on deadline day, to reversing past mistakes.
It's a real pity that such a drastic measure has had to be taken three games into the Premier League campaign, but so much was expected of them as the transfer window drew to a close on Friday night. Whether the 'fault' of the owners or the manager you can't help but question how such a situation was ever allowed to develop.
Rodgers approach to the whole situation surrounding the movements of Carroll was bizarre - initially he touted him out by claiming he wasn't part of his vision, then exclaimed that he would be a "nutcase" to allow him to leave. Allegedly, the deal that took Carroll on loan to West Ham had been struck two weeks ago, but whether the case or not there is absolutely no excuse for allowing him to leave without guaranteeing a replacement. It is absolute basic management.
If the owners could not supply the funds to bring someone in, then Carroll had to stay. There have been no real mutterings to suggest that he had to be taken off the wage bill so it doesn't appear that it was purely a financial decision.
But Rodgers transfer activities since joining the club have been somewhat strange considering the participation in the Europa League this season. In all, Liverpool have allowed nine players to leave the club, including the likes of Dirk Kuyt and Craig Bellamy, whilst bringing in only three recognised players. It's fair to say that you could add Raheem Sterling to the incoming list, as the young winger's performances against both Man City and Arsenal were outstanding, but the squad is far too light to compete on one major front, let alone two or three.
Whether he is to be blamed for this or not, there is now huge pressure on Rodgers to succeed with what he has - especially if Carroll continues to look impressive for West Ham. It almost smacks somewhat of desperation that fans of the club have already turned their attention to January in the hope they will be able to get the rangy frontman back.
The rumours, and lists, of 'realistic' free agents that have been circulating the Internet has made the club somewhat of a laughing stock. Alessandro Del Piero, Eidur Gudjohnsen have been touted - as have Anfield old boys Emile Heskey and Florent Sinama-Pongolle. Surely Rodgers isn't that desperate? Now they've made their bed, they must to the best to lie flat in it, and attention must be turned to youth. Though, it is an ambition of the owners to develop their own talent, so perhaps this was the intention all along. Whilst Sterling has made a real impression, such lofty expectations would be unfair to Adam Morgan, though some quarters believe Samed Yesil, the recently-signed young German striker who scored 23 goals in 20 games for the Bayer Leverkusen U-19, could make an immediate impact.
The lack of striking options, or even options in the last third, was obvious against Arsenal. And whilst it could be said that it was no different to the team that played against Man City, at least fans could rest assured that there was a Plan B on the bench if needed. Luis Suarez toiled up front by himself as he usually does, but the short thrift he received off Thomas Vermaelen and Per Mertesacker will be a common occurrence unless his team-mates assist him more. Fabio Borini has had somewhat of a quiet start to life at Anfield, and whilst he has shown snippets of talent and is too early to judge him, he was far too easily shrugged off the ball by an Arsenal team who are far from the toughest campaigners in the league. As mentioned, Sterling was superb but too much must not be expected of him, whilst Stewart Downing seems happy to pick up where he left off from last season.
Though it must be said, Joe Allen has been a real bright spark. Rodgers has been criticised for spending three quarters of an alleged £20million kitty on the young Welshman, but in my eyes that makes perfect sense if he is the key ingredient in how the manager wants the game to be played. He has looked extremely comfortable sitting in centre midfield, and his distribution has been excellent. Though, it is somewhat ironic that, for all Rodgers claims about installing his Swansea philosophy on his new team, only Newcastle have played more long balls that Liverpool (70) this season. Did someone mention a big target man?
Though Liverpool fans must remain patient and positive, there is simply no other choice. To be fair to the owners, they are trying to go about things in the correct manner - applying focus to long term growth and prosperity instead of plunging cash into a short-term fix, whilst Rodgers is trying to play the beautiful game in the way it deserves to be played.
Liverpool were taught a harsh lesson by Arsenal at the weekend, but based on the principles the management are trying to install in Merseyside, there is no better club to teach them.