Liverpool were kind enough to have one of their worst performances in years on the cusp of their longest break in months, leaving us with more than a week to remember just how
passionless and awful unlucky and tired they were against Wigan. But the weekend's finally here, and with it comes the promise of a better day. Or maybe a worse one. Listen, at minimum there's another day happening at some point. Deal with it.
* The club took a break from whoring themselves out on every social media outlet in existence to announce their initial plans for the upcoming summer, which most had naturally assumed was going to include another overseas tour. The 2011 summer months saw Liverpool undertake a massively successful Asian tour---in terms of exposure and support, it was a terrific showing for the club. The only failure, much to the chagrin of Gavin Laws, was that they were busted trying to smuggle Asia's top talent through customs in Raul Meireles' skinny jeans bag. Plenty of space, obviously, but all bets are off when the specially-crafted mohawk spray you left in the bag explodes.
That this summer's tour was announced for North America comes as little surprise, as it's been rumored for months and, given FSG's connection to...you know, Fenway, the setting of the July 25th friendly matchup with Roma makes perfect sense. There's still plenty left to be announced, as a couple more matches are a certainty and stops in New York and Toronto have been rumored as well. Chicago's also been an oft-mentioned destination, but with Europa League qualification starting at some point shortly after their tour, an extended travel schedule doesn't seem on the cards.
As more details are announced we'll be sure to run them, and with a large part of our readership based in the US, maybe we'll flirt with the idea of some sort of nearly intentional bumping into one another. There's a decent chance I'll be making the trip out for at least one of the matches---Boston might make the most sense for me given some contacts I'd have in the area, but if it's further west (read: cheaper to get to) I'm likely headed there. Regardless, it's great news for supporters on this side of the Atlantic, and hopefully if you're nearby you'll have a chance to see Liverpool in action.
* More immediately Liverpool are facing a shorter trip, but one that's going to prove far more challenging than anything they'll experience over here. Newcastle have been fantastic this season, far outreaching anyone's expectations and managing to keep themselves in the hunt for a European spot past the point that many thought they'd have faded off.
Sunday presents Andy Carroll with his first chance to visit his former club, and as expected there's been plenty of ink dedicated to the forward's return. Much has been made of his comments about having a few butterflies, and Kenny Dalglish got himself in the mix yesterday as he spoke about how he expects Carroll to be treated by the Sports Direct FREE DELIVERY TODAY ONLY ON ALL MEN'S UNITARDS AND HEY HAVE YOU SEEN OUR SIGNS ON THE INSIDE OF THE STADIUM THEY'RE BLUE AND RED CAN'T MISS THEM Arena faithful:
“They are all entitled to their opinion. I’m sure whatever we say about whatever Andy had done, opinion will always be split. There are always going to be people saying it was good or bad. But that doesn’t make any difference. For me, we were delighted to get him and we’re still very pleased to have him. I’m not sure he will get abuse, because what happened was outside his control. They pay their entrance money and if they want to give him stick, they will give.
“But I don’t think he ever did anything other than give his best for Newcastle, and then they got £35 million into the bargain as well. That’s not bad, is it? If you get booed, you take it as a compliment. Andy will be excited about going back. It’s the club he supported as a boy, the club that introduced him and gave him his chance in professional football. He will be excited about it as a local boy and will be looking forward to the game.”
That's been the party line on Carroll all season long---happy to have him, delighted he's here, been working hard. And that's nice, just like it's nice he thinks Steven Gerrard is swell. But there's always a generally unsettling feeling with Andy Carroll, and it's never really been explainable. Settling in, new personnel, different tactics, and commitment to a dodgy ponytail are all valid in their own right, but when Dalglish speaks of the "delight" at having Carroll at Liverpool, I'm not sure I'm alone in saying that it's never really rung true.
* Lastly, earlier in the week nate from oh you beauty posted a nice lighthearted graphic exploring the range of conflicts for Liverpool supporters this season. And by "lighthearted" I mean that it's no fun at all because this season's been a tremendous pain in the ass, with any sort of positive thought discounted by an equally valid negative. But anyway, the takeaway isn't that you don't have a soul anymore, it's that pictures with lots of different colors are good to distract you from the fact that life sucks and nothing's ever going to get better!
That's it for now, and we'll be back later with some more somethings. In the meantime, rest easy in the knowledge that you can always find those gloves with the six fingers at Sports Direct (language NSFW):