Me as a die die die hard liverpool fans, really want to speak out my mind here to share with u all on my opinion with Houllier.
1) We must admit that the expectations we have for Liverpool is no longer similiar to 70s, 80s. We shall understand that (as according to Houllier speech in Liverpoll FC AGM) our aim in EPL is to launch a serious challenge to EPL tittle. Yes, we are not here to win it, but give a bit of challenge. Like what we did 2 season ago, finished 2nd ahead of MU.
2) Liverpool is a country side city. Not a big city. Life is not anything fancy at all and it is lived with mostly blue-collared labour. Thus, even we have money to sign the big star, they won;t come. OF course, we will not spend big money like Leeds, eventually ended up in a financial mess. Our ticket price is cheaper (due to the income of blue collar labour), and we are not public listed company. We have our limit constraint , we know that, we have been spending carefully and we are always in financial health.
3) During 70s and 80s, whichever the year we won Big Trophy and be the Champion, there was always a Scottish player, ie 80s Dalgish and 99 MacAllister. Tradationally believe,d we need a least a Scottish player.
4)And I dun agree Houllier is a lousy manager to always make wrong decision on player transfer.
He first asked for Les Ferdiand, West Ham wanted 15m. We could not afford. Houllier then bought Hyypia and Hencoz for a combined 5m.
8m Hamann and 5m kewell had done us fantastic job. 11m heskey had scored many goals for us during the first two seasons. Even as of now, he is contributing 15.% of Liverpool goals so far this season. Dudek 4m is not a bad investment at all. Liverpool was competing with Juventus and Barcelona to sign Biscan. Ferguson wanted desperately to sing Le Tallec and Sinama, but we get them both for 4.5m etc... Of course he also made some bad decision, ie. Diao, Diouf, Finnan, TRaore, Diomede.. etc.....
Although media claimt that Houllier had spend >100m, it is quite misleading. According to actual financial figures, he spennt >100m and he also recovered >70m from disposing off some players. Actual amount spent by him is only between 30m to 40m. With 30-40mm, He brought us joy and trophies during the 99,00,01.
Averagely, he is not too bad on player transfer.
5) Hollier should be gone but not sacked. He had brought Liverpool trophies, he had helped Owen to be European Player of the year. The only English player who achieves this award playing for English Club (other Englishman is kelvin Keagen, he played for Hamburg). He loved Liverpool as we do, he almost lost his life in the game (when Leeds leading 1-0 halftime) , he gave his best to the team. SHould not he deserve a lifetime job working for Liverpool ??
But one should understand his historical performance.
His strength is to spot potential player and cultivate him to be a real good player. He has shown that by training up so many french world class footballer. He has shown that with he was one of the best technical director, to trasnform a French national team , who was not even qualified for World CUp 90, 94 and suddenly be a World Champion in 98.
However, he is never not a successful manager. He was French national team manager during 92,93 and 94. And he failed to take the team to USA. And of coursem he asked for 5 years from Liverpool Board to turn the club around.
We were 5th in EPL before he was the manager. After 5 years, we are still hanging at 5th place. Dun see anything difference. His 5 years spell was not really successful. Though he brought us some trophies, his task is to make Liverpool to give a serious challenge on EPL tittle. With such a gap to 3rd place Chelsea, I dun think we are really giving any "serious challenge" on the tittle.
Houllier should be transferred to Melwood, where Liverpool youth Academic is located. He is sure a good technical director, to brin us some young talent and train them to a world class player. Look at how much MU relied on Neveille, Butt, Beckham, Schioles....
Carrying the role of manager had diversified his concentration.