Don't get me wrong, I'm as much a fan of strong work ethic as the next guy. When I see a man put his heart and soul on the line for the team, I commend him. However, there comes a point when hard work is just not enough.
Dirk Kuyt is a tireless worker on the football pitch. His never-ending motor is rivaled only by the Liverpool captain, Steven Gerrard.
The problem with Kuyt is that he simply does not have the talent to match his heart. Hard work can only get you so far at Liverpool.
For Kuyt, his tireless efforts have given him a spot in Liverpool's lineup in nearly every game this season, but Liverpool is a world class club, and to succeed at Liverpool, you need world-class talent. Kuyt lacks world-class talent.
He is too slow to beat a man one-on-one. His crosses are generally sub-par from the right wing. His shooting is abysmal most of the time.
I would have no problem seeing Kuyt come off the bench as a sub. His high-energy performances would definitely be a plus when the opponents are huffing and puffing in the waning minutes.
I wouldn't even mind seeing him get a spot start every now and then when the schedule is packed (Liverpool generally doesn't draw the lucky scheduling like Manchester United these days).
The bottom line is Kuyt should not start every game on the pitch for Liverpool, never mind as the lone striker (I'm still not sure what Benitez was thinking against Stoke). He has a place at Liverpool, but his place should be coming off the bench.