Nigel is a Liverpool FC fan since the year 2003 when he was just 6 years old and witnessed many Liverpool FC epic moments since 2003.
Firstly, who would've thought that Liverpool Fc would eventually win a Premier League title in our lifetime.
If you have been following English football for a while, you know that, Liverpool Fc is one of the big four clubs as of 2010 and one of the big six as of today.
Previously, the big four includes, Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool with Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspurs joining in later in the 2010s to make it the big six of the Premier League.
Liverpool Fc is known to have some of the most loyal international fans and a big fan-base outside of England.
However, Liverpool Fc spent some time in the mid-table of the league for the majority of the early 2010s. It was really a test of fan's loyalty to the club during this period.
Lets have a look at the infamous "banter" era of Liverpool Fc and how it really was a dark time of the club in the Premier League.
The 2010-2011 season
It's hard to think that this was the Liverpool FC team just a decade ago. There were world class players in the team, for instance, club legend, Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres, with the latter being sold in the January transfer window.
During this time, Liverpool FC was fresh from sacking Rafa Benitez who won the Champions League for LFC in 2005 and replacing him with former Fulham manager, Roy Hodgson.
In all honesty, it was a surprise entry to have big Roy come in as manager and we weren't expecting much from him.
The season started disappointingly under Roy's leadership although the squad was pretty strong with Gerrard and Torres still leading the strike force and a solid defensive partnership between Daniel Agger and Martin Skrtel.
Lets have a look at the 2010-2011 Liverpool FC Premier League Squad
Andy Carroll & **Fernando Torres ( Until January 2011)
Signings made during the 2010-2011 season.
Signings in winter 2010:
- Milan Jovanovic from Belgium club, Standard Leige.
- Jonjo Shelvey from English club, Charlton Athletic.
- Danny Wilson from Scottish club, Rangers.
- Joe Cole from English club, Chelsea.
- Raul Meireles from Portugese club, Porto.
- Paul Konchesky from English club, Fulham.
- Christian Poulsen from Italian club, Juventus.
- Brad Jones from English club, Middlesbrough.
Signings made in Summer January 2011:
- Luis Suarez from Dutch club, Ajax.
- Andy Carroll from English club, Newcastle.
The first 6 months of Hodgson's tenure
Summary of the first half of the 2010-2011 season
The start of the "Banter Era"?
In a nutshell, the 2010-2011 season was said to be the start of the now infamous, "Banter Era" where Liverpool Fc were no-where near the great they used to be.
The signing of Roy Hodgson as the team Manager was not the best decision by the club as Liverpool went on to perform disappointingly during the 6 months of his tenure.
The most high profile signings made by Roy was, Jovanovic, Wilson, Cole, Poulsen and Meireles, with Meireles the sole survivor from Roy's era to complete the season.
Although stars like Fernando Torres, Steven Gerrard, Jamie Carragher and Glen Johnson were still in the club, they weren't able to play at their best during this time.
This was considered Liverpool Fc's worst season in their Premiership history, by the time Roy was sacked, LFC was fighting for relegation at 16th place.
Liverpool went on to win 6 games, lose 8 games and draw 4 games in the league during Roy's tenure in the club before being sacked on 8th January 2011.
The return of the King!
The King has returned!
Roy Hodgson was sacked from the club on January 8th 2011 and was replaced with Kenny Dalglish, the club legend.
When "King Kenny" arrived at the club, his first task was to oversee the transfer of Fernando Torres. After Torres's sale to Chelsea, he brought in Andy Carroll and Luis Suarez as the replacements, with the former, a British transfer record for a Striker at that time.
Liverpool Fc's form continued to improve under the Club Legend, bringing the team out of the relegation battle to fighting for European football.
Under Dalglish's leadership, the club won 10 games lost 5 games and drew 3 games, which was enough for the club to finish at 6th place in the Premier League that season.
How a change of ownership helped the club?
Fenway sports group's entry to the team
Former owners of Liverpool Fc, Tom Hicks & George Gillett Jr. was under fire by the fans following controversies happening in the team, it was as if the team was at their most disunited.
The pair created mountains of debts during their ownership of the club by taking loans from banks to purchase players.
This showed to fans that the owners were not financially able to support the club thus, the pair put the club on sale.
On October 2010, current owners, Fenway Sports Group, a company owned by John W. Henry, who owns the Boston Red Sox as well, agreed to purchase the club and absorb the debts.
FSG was seen as the savior of the club, where one of their first assignments were to revamp the management of the club.
How was 2010-2011 season a test of fan's loyalty?
Liverpool Fc is known to produce really loyal fans with at least 200 supporter clubs in 50 countries recognized by LFC. The fans are also known as "kopties".
Most fans of Liverpool Fc are lifelong fans, some were fans since the last time the club won a league title in 1990.
However, during the Premier League era, the 2010-2011 season can be considered one of the worst seasons in the club's history where the club was fighting for relegation (demotion to a lower league) at the start of the season.
While most loyal and lifelong fans will stick with the club throughout this tough times, there were a few rotten tomatoes who went on to support another club.
These fans are what we call, "plastic" or "glory hunters" or in Malaysia, "lalang" , which means weed because weed grows at places that have crops.
The club fighting in the relegation battle was indeed embarrassing, however, there is always a light at the end of the tunnel, as said in the first two stanzas of "you'll never walk alone".
The first two stanzas of Liverpool FC's You'll Never Walk Alone
You'll Never Walk Alone
When you walk through a storm
Hold your head up high
And don't be afraid of the dark
At the end of a storm
There's a golden sky
And the sweet silver song of a lark
- Gerry & The Peacemakers
It was just a decade ago..
It's weird how this happened just a decade ago but it felt like it just happened not long ago.
Kenny Dalglish continued to manage the club until his sacking in 2012 due to a bad run of form.
Brendan Rodgers was appointed as manager from 2012 where he and his team nearly won the league in 2013, just missing it by 4 points.
Rodgers was sacked in the middle of the 2015-2016 season and was replaced by Jurgen Klopp
The end of the "Banter" era was when Jurgen Klopp was appointed as manager of the club where he and his team won at least 3 major trophies throughout his tenure.
© 2020 Nigel Koay