Liverpool FC: Five Reasons to Be Hopeful for the Coming Season
2011-12 equaled their poorest season in the top flight (since the beginning of the Premier League era) and their lowest points tally since 1956.
With a new campaign however, comes a new manager, fresh players, and a sense of renewed ambition.
Here are 5 reasons why Liverpool fans can be optimistic about the 2012-13 season.
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Following the departure of Kenny Dalglish, Liverpool were quick to appoint former Swansea City manager, Brendan Rogers.
Rogers has emphasized his desire to implement tiki-taka football at Anfield, but stressed that wholesale changes will not happen over night (via NESN).
Hopefully over time we can get that model, but from what I've seen of the players so far, I think they've enjoyed working that way. They've been fantastic with the football, but it's just going to take that wee bit of time. We're football coaches and managers, not magicians.
If the Northern Irishman can make a few more signings that fit into his philosophy during the summer transfer window, 2012-13 promises to be much more successful.
Daniel Agger (left) Martin Skrtel (right)
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Liverpool's woes last season were certainly not for a lack of defensive effort.
However offensively and they were nowhere near as fruitful.
A meager 47 goals was enough to earn them only 11th best in the EPL.
Even relegated Blackburn Rovers scored 48 goals, and they finished eleven places below the Reds in 19th.
Liverpool need to sort things out in the goal scoring department and keep their defense fit to have any chance of bringing Champions League football back to Merseyside.
A Full Season from Luis Suarez
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Luis Suarez missed a significant chunk of last season after being found guilty of racially abusing Manchester United's Patrice Evra.
Despite his time out of the first-team, Suarez all-in-all had a prolific campaign and was the Reds' leading goalscorer with 17 goals in all competitions.
According to the BBC, Brendan Rogers has urged Suarez to put the race row behind him and look forward to the new season.
The Uruguayan missed Liverpool's early preseason preparations while on international duty at the Olympics, but Rogers claims his No. 7 "is already fighting fit" and should be ready to go in a few weeks time.
Stewart Downing Finally off the Mark
Stewart Downing celebrates after goal against Stoke in FA Cup quarterfinal
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He spent the entirety of his first season with the Reds dallying on the sideline, and failed to score or create a single goal in the league.
To his credit, the England midfielder notched two goals in Liverpool's run to the FA Cup final, but it was a disappointing season in the grand scheme of things.
This time around Downing has got himself off to a flyer.
He scored the only goal in a Europa League qualifier against Belarussian side Gomel with this wonderful long range strike.
Liverpool fans can now hope and pray that Downing will go on to have the kind of season we thought £20 million was buying us a year ago.
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Names like Adam Morgan, Raheem Sterling, Marc Pelosi, Andre Wisdom, and Stephen Sama (to name a few) have been making headway for quite some time now, but are only now receiving the recognition they deserve.
Adam Morgan scored Liverpool's only goal in a 1-1 draw against MLS club Toronto FC during the Reds' preseason tour of the United States.
Raheem Sterling made his first-team debut against Wigan Athletic at the tender age of 17 to become the second-youngest Liverpool player ever to grace the Anfield turf.
American starlet Marc Pelosi has yet to appear in the senior squad, but since his move from local club De Anza Force, the California native has looked more than capable in academy and reserve team matches.
Andre Wisdom has been on the cusp of a first-team call up for a while now, but still has yet to make that elusive first appearance.
However, the England U21 defender regularly trains at Melwood with the likes of Daniel Agger and Martin Skrtel which will provide him with invaluable experience.
Stephen Sama was snatched up from Borussia Dortmund in the summer of 2009 and spent his first season with the Liverpool academy playing as a striker.
He has since transitioned to center back where his height and great passing range have served him well.
Sama made several first-team appearances in the Reds' tour of the USA and was impressive throughout.