“ Genre: Sports - Football / Theatrical Release: 2005 / DVD released 12 June, 2006 at ITV DVD / Features of the DVD: PAL „
I have been a Liverpool fan since I was four years old and I have seen reasonable success with them through my childhood (1996 League Cup Final or the 'McManaman Final' and the Houllier treble in 2001 - League Cup, FA Cup and Uefa Cup) but as I entered adulthood my team was going into decline.........but then Rafa Benitez took over in 2004 and we won the European Cup in Istanbul in 2005 in the greatest comeback ever in the history of European football. Having watched Manchester United dominate domestically and in Europe for the best part of 15 years, it was great to win our fifth European cup. This DVD shows the highlights of the following season...2005/06.......
I have to say that I was invigorated by Istanbul.....I really felt that we could kick on, build a top quality squad and dominate the English league. We had stiff competition....Chelsea were seriously strong with Jose Mourinho at the helm and Manchester United were rebuilding around Rooney and Ronaldo. Arsenal were dangerous and attacking as ever with Henry and co. However, we had built our team through the middle with a solid centre half pairing of a towering Sami Hyypia and man mountain Jamie Carragher. The midfield was run by the dynamic Steven Gerrard and classy Xabi Alonso (our best player by a mile.....Liverpools current decline is no accident) but we lacked a seriously consistent goalkeeper and top striker (Baros and Cisse just didn't cut the mustard) Benitez brought in Pepe Reina for £6 million (a bargain when you look back!) and Peter Crouch for £7 million. He also bought Momo Sissoko to strengthen the midfield. We were good to go and challenge for the title!
The season started poorly with plenty of draws and a 4-1 home battering by Chelsea and the resurgent Didier Drogba but we rallied and went on a run of 11 games without conceding a goal (ended by Sau Paulo in 1-0 defeat in final of World Club Cup in Japan) That run sent us flying up the table and close to challenging Chelsea for the title. However, successive league defeats away to Manchester United and Chelsea in the new year effectively ended our title challenge as Chelsea ran away with the title. Our european exploits were also finished by Benfica in the last 16 of the Champions league in a 3-0 aggregate defeat. But our last hope of silverware lay in the FA cup!
We beat Manchester United 1-0 at Anfield, Portsmouth 2-1 at Fratton Park, Birmingham 7-0 at St Andrews and Chelsea 2-1 at Old Trafford to set up a final against West Ham in May. This final was dubbed the 'Gerrard final' as he scored twice in normal time in 3-3 thriller. We eventually brought the FA cup home after a penalty shootout (again!) and ended the season on a high.
The season ended in moderate success. Victory in the FA cup and a third placed finish in the league to secure Champions league football for the next season. One of the reaons we struggled at times that season, in my opinion, was the lack of a 25-goal-a-season striker. We had crouchy yeah who was class but we didn't have someone like Torres. We relied too heavily on Gerrard for goals. Benitez fixed this next season by bringing in Bellamy and the following season with Torres but we still seemed to fall short.
The DVD itself was thorough, showed every goal but was a bit short in extras and interviews regarding the season. Plus a few extra highlights wouldn't go amiss (extended highlights of important matches such as Merseyside derbys would be good) Overall, a solid and enjoyable DVD for any Liverpool fan!
P.S. Just a side .... we beat Everton 3-1 at Goodison and 3-1 at Anfield that season. Awesome!
Possibly the greatest FA Cup Final of all time. This game had absolutely everything from goal mouth action, to priceless penalty saves and world class defending. West Ham considered to be massive underdogs, provided one of the closest hard fought finals, against a Liverpool side considered to be firmly among the top 4 Clubs in the premiership.
West Ham stormed into an early 2-0 lead with goals from Dean Ashton and an own goal from Jamie Carragher, and a potential upset looked firmly on the cards. But great teams produce great comebacks as Liverpool came from 2 goals behind to put the score level at 2-2 with goals from Djbril Cisse and Steven Gerrard. By this point it looked more then likely that Liverpool's strength in depth and class would and shine overwelhm a now disconsolate west ham side.
However West Ham were not to be intimidated nor go under. Paul Konchesky scored on 64 minutes to put west ham into a 3-2 lead. West Ham were now just 26 minutes away from fa cup glory, and as the clock ticked past the 90 minutes mark west ham fans must have thought this was going to be their day. But Steven Gerrard had other ideas, by scoring an absolute screamer of a goal, in my opinion the greatest fa cup goal of all time. The shear venom, power and accuracy of the shot was yet another trademark Gerrard Goal. This DVD is well worth buying for liverpool fans to see their hero gerrard rise to greatness.
As the game went into penalties the drama was far from over and Pepe Reina being the expert penalty saver was at the centre of all the action.