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Red Revival: Rafa Benitez's Liverpool Revolution Paperback – 20 Jun 2006
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A review of Rafa Benitez's second season in charge of Liverpool football club, with a look at how the club has progressed since his arrival in 2004, how it built upon the dramatic champions league win in May 2005 and the dramatic domestic improvement of 2005/06.
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As Tomkins disects Benitez's second season at Anfield he argues each point clearly and backs it up with stats, so although it's obvious that Tomkins is a Red you simply can't argue with how he presents his case.
From looking at the arrivals over the summer and winter (the return of God!) to the on-going search for investment, Tomkins' has left no stone unturned to in showing us the major dealings at Anfield since the season started against TNS last July.
I just wish I could remember most of what he's written when I'm arguing with my mates about the merits of Crouch, Sissoko, Reina et al. Enjoy.
Every aspect of the season is discussed, from the will-he won't he Gerrard saga of 2005, to all the new additions to the squad including Robbie Fowler, to the best ever Premiership points tally all the way on to that memorable Saturday in Cardiff. Detailed statistical analysis of individual players lets readers realize just how important each was for the team in their own way as the reds broke the club record for consecutive clean sheets. It also suggests how Liverpool might combat Chelsea's spending, gives a good description of the new scouting system that Benitez has installed and details the youth team players who may or may not have the ability to break into the first team.
A great read for any fan of football (obviously, Liverpool fans will have more to enjoy than most) which is insightful, intelligent, at times very witty and most important of all, thoroughly enjoyable. Highly recommended
I don't think this book is quite as good as Golden Past Red Future, his first book, simply because it doesn't have the Champions League final as its climax. But it's more than able to stand side-by-side in terms of overall quality, insight, humour and understanding of the game. While generally positive in its tone, there are also criticisms in what reads as a balanced outlook on the club.
The analysis is spot-on, as always from Tompkins. Even if one doesn't agree with everything he says, it can be respected; his views are never less than interesting.
Tomkins writes with real talent and is lucky enough to draw not only on his passion for the club, but also his apparent excellent knowledge of the game.
Like Golden Past, Red Future, this is not a rose-tinted view of the club, nor of the season. It is, however, another excellent, well balanced and well written book on the greatest club side that England has ever seen. Er, did I mention the 5 European Cups???
Writing like this is something special, it make you really appreciate the club, the game and the fans. People love football for various reasons, this book can only make you love it more.