What the Dickens?

These are truly Dickensian times. The worst of times. The best of times.

Tea parties and Terry Jones on the one hand and the Indo-Pak express playing the finals in New York on the eve of 9/11 on the other. The sad situation in J&K and Pakistan on the one hand, and the Sena stronghold of Mumbai celebrating Eid and Ganesh Chaturthi simultaneously on the other.

Things are not very different for Liverpool. The dark clouds regarding the club’s ownership and future are gathering apace. The form on the pitch hasn’t been great with only a hard earned win against West Brom giving a glimmer of hope in the league. The indestructible man himself, Dirk Kuyt, actually gets injured in training, of all things and is out for a month or more. And a run of 3 games in a week coming up including visits to Birmingham (unbeaten at home for long) and ye olde enemy (who is also hurting thanks to the draw at Everton) sandwiching a tough home game against Steaua Bucharest! [This is being written just before Liverpool visit Birmingham]

On the other hand, three Liverpool players scored in the first round of internationals (Torres, Miereles and Kuyt). Torres and Gerrard both played very well for their countries and are getting into some kind of form . Both Tottenham and Man-City (presumably the most likely opponents for 4th in the league) dropped points in the last couple of games. And, hopefully, with his clangers against Arsenal and Argentina (for Spain), Pepe Reina has finished his quota of howlers for the season!

So, like the “Interval” placard that comes up just as the beady eyes eyes of the hero light on something sticking out from under the carpet near the dead body, there are some clues out there but, this season could yet swing any way for Liverpool.

The next month or month and a half should provide enough pointers as to what that direction would be. On the pitch, this period includes trips not only to Birmingham and Manchester United but also Everton, Utrecht and Napoli, apart from that home game against Steaua. And then, there is the far more important off-field question of the club’s ownership which will also hopefully take some form or shape over that period. All indications are that the much unloved yanks will be out, what with the Board outvoting them on their plans to raise more money by mortgaging the little that’s been un-mortgaged, namely the stadium and the players themselves!

We shall wait. We shall watch. We shall hope. The believers among us shall pray … that it all turns out well. After all, this is the season of Eid and the elephant-headed god.

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