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MSNBC Joe Scarborough Wants Rafa Benitez Sacked


Count MSNBC TV host Joe Scarborough among the growing number of people who think Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez should be fired.

With Liverpool’s season seemingly getting worse each week, it was a bit of a surprise to see Scarborough, the host of Morning Joe on MSNBC, mention Benitez on his Twitter account. After after some research, I quickly learned that Scarborough is a soccer fan and supports Liverpool FC.

In his tweet on Saturday, Scarborough wrote “I am doing a Today Show at 7a and then will rush home to see Liverpool [play against Stoke City]. Thanks. (PS – Fire Rafa).” He also added to his Twitter feed, “It’s terrible at Liverpool. How did Rafa so effectively destroy the greatest club in English history?

Here’s what Scarborough said about Liverpool in his additional tweets:


In addition to calling for Benitez to be fired, Lucas Leiva was another target for Scarborough’s ire. “Lucas is not good enough to play in the EPL, let alone on its greatest club,” “Words fail. So does Lucas,” and “How long does the Lucas experiment get in the way of rebuilding the greatest franchise ever? Does one game buy another two years?

While I agree with Scarborough that Benitez should get sacked and is destroying the legacy the greatest club in English football history, I disagree with his assertion that Leiva is terrible. The Brazilian didn’t have the greatest game against Stoke, but Leiva has been far better this season than last. Is he the best player for that position? No, but he’s the best they have at the current moment.

Lastly, here’s a clip of Joe Scarborough talking about Liverpool on-air from a previous season:

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  1. marcus

    January 18, 2010 at 2:38 pm

    please Rafa leave this club. Ur causing much harm to this club.

  2. Rob Marrs

    January 18, 2010 at 12:56 pm

    Degen has barely played – to blame him his bonkers. Say Insua and you have a case!

    Crouch is and was better but he didn’t fit into the system and wanted regular play. I agree, however, that Liverpool should have strengthened the forward line. Rafa tried that with Keane and Keane was, in his tenure at Liverpool (and has been since) very poor. To the chap having a pop at Crouch – he scored a decent number of goals and was sold at a profit. Not bad business.

    Lucas is good at his job. His problem is that he is not a creative player and, the problem for Liverpool is, there is no creative midfielder at present – bar Aquilani who is injured.

    Incidentally, my understanding is that Liverpool did not pay £20m for Aquilani but, rather, it could end up totalling £20m once appearances/success have been taken into account. He may turn out to be a very fine player – and I think he will.


  3. Zi

    January 18, 2010 at 9:02 am

    Liverpool fc main problems:
    4.rely on gerrard and torres only and if they both get injured liverpool fc will struggle to win even with coca-cola league teams…. proper investing(millions pounds wasted on transfers) proper discipline while in play(teammates colliding)..take a look at the nice n disciplinary play of man utd and chelsea…
    7.N’Gog…need lots more experience before being titular to play for Liverpool’s main team(for me crouch was better)
    8. Reina…(just take a look at his goal sheet for liverpool) for me Dudek was better
    9.sorry but Rafa,please do leave Liverpool…EPL IS NOT IN YOUR VAST COACHING SKILLS..

    • brn442

      January 18, 2010 at 11:24 am

      Dudek was better? surely you’re having a laugh.

  4. Zi

    January 18, 2010 at 8:34 am

    im from mauritius…n every fans of the reds here are down from liverpool bad performances..but hey guys,i do beliv Rafa is a gud trainer but not for english futbol…its different there and any soccer coach can agree on wish Rafa a gud luck for other leagues coz i knw liverpool one day will face rafa’s future futbol team in the champions league…for me Sir Alex is the best althou Man utd is our main rival but zats the truth and my dream is to see mourinho back in EPL and y not at anfield…!!!!for the moment, jus wanna wish Rafa gud luck for the future but man,liverpool fc is not for ur aptitude if not to say english futbol is out of ur skills..

  5. eplnfl

    January 17, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    Joe and I on the same side of an issue for a change. He is a big soccer fan often mentions the game on his show. Now if a conservative American politician and tv personality can appreciate soccer all of America can. Hey, think he would make a great podcast guest. Kartik and Joe can cover both sides of the issues. lol!

  6. Rob Marrs

    January 17, 2010 at 5:01 pm

    Incidentally, Liverpool are not, and never have been, a ”franchise’.

  7. Tyson

    January 17, 2010 at 5:00 pm

    I think the problem with Benitez is he doesn’t seem to realize the gravity of the situation.

    Everytime he screws up his comments are something like “we got unlucky” or “you win some you lose some”.

    It feels like nobody is taking responsibility or admitting there is a problem and if you can’t admit there is a problem how do you go about fixing it?!

    I also think blaming things on the owners is irresponsible. Benitez has spent more in the transfer market these last few years than United and Arsenal and only falls behind Chelsea and their enormous club changing windfall.

    You have to remember buying players is something anybody can do but getting them to work together as a good team that is effective is a completely different thing.

  8. Rob Marrs

    January 17, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    Would never question his credentials – am sure he is a supporter. I just happen to disagree with him.


  9. Brian

    January 17, 2010 at 2:43 pm

    I’ve actually met the man over the summer during his show in Chicago. He would come over during commercial break and before and after the show and talk football with me. The man knows what he is talking about; he is as passionate about the Reds as they come, and he is very insightful regarding the beautiful game. So anyone questioning his credentials really doesn’t know any better, and if you doing so because of his political views, then you really are lost.

  10. Rob Marrs

    January 17, 2010 at 12:24 pm

    We can’t afford to get rid of Benitez – it would cost up to £20m and we’d almost certainly lose Torres, Mascherano, Riera and Reina.

    Neither of these are good things. Have to say, I think we should stick it out – the easy thing is to sack someone. The hard thing is to stand by him and work something out in the summer (this may mean dealing in free transfers).

    More importantly, Benitez is the only world-class manager who would touch Liverpool at present. For all the bluster about Hiddink and Mourinho, can you actually imagine either moving to Liverpool with the prospect of (a) having to sell Torres (b) having no money to sign replacements?



      January 17, 2010 at 11:29 pm

      If we were able to buy an injury prone player for £20m why not sack a crazy manager for the same amount? Yes, We can?

  11. Ivan

    January 17, 2010 at 11:42 am

    Cut Joe some slack; the man is entitled to his opinion. Good to know that a well-known journalist(and former politician) follows the beautiful game. This is a good thing! I’d rather see Joe tell people what he thinks about Rafa Benitez than hear the retard Jim Rome spew hatred against the game.

    • The Voice Of Reason

      January 17, 2010 at 8:08 pm

      Totally agree.

  12. RHR

    January 17, 2010 at 10:53 am

    You don’t half talk some shite you yanks.
    Lucas has been onee of the best players this season, and I was one of those who was saying he wasn’t up to it. Gerrard wants to stop sulking like a bit soft kid, roll up his sleeves and put a few tackles in. As a fellow scouser who played in the middle, he’s making me feel embarassed

  13. Satavia

    January 17, 2010 at 10:12 am

    Ugh…as an American myself I find it really embarrassing when my countrymen make ridiculous statements like the notion that Rafa has destroyed the greatest football club on earth. Seriously? Being midtable halfway through one season counts as destroying a club? Most top flight clubs have been relegated in the past, they certainly haven’t been ruined in the process. A little bit of perspective!

    Now, Hicks and Gillette may honestly be ruining Liverpool, but that’s not Benitez’s fault…

    • b

      January 17, 2010 at 12:06 pm

      So then can I say, as an American I’m embarrassed when an American says: “Now, Hicks and Gillette may honestly be ruining Liverpool, but that’s not Benitez’s fault…”?

      Because it was Benitez who ran Alonso out of town. And for what? To chase Barry who’s half the player Alonso is? Who bought Keane and then sold him when they’re short of cover? Who starts Lucas constantly when he’s mediocre at best? Who’s wasted millions in the transfer market on busts? And who mortgaged the future for Torres who’s constantly injured?

      Hicks and Gillette have given Rafa plenty of cash. He just doesn’t use it wisely.

      But I don’t really get embarrassed when Americans say dumb things.

    • Kopite in OK

      January 17, 2010 at 12:11 pm

      Not Benitez’s fault?? What club are you watching?

      Who picks the teamsheet? Who picks the tactics? NOT the owners!

      Rafa recently was quoted by UEFA’s Champions League magazine as saying “you can’t win trophies if you’re cautious.” Too bad he can;t follow his own advice. TWO defensive holding midfielders doesn’t make you cautious, especially against clubs like Stoke? He’s lost the plot.

      OH and remember that Rafa has spent a ton of money since becoming Liverpool manager and what did that do for us??

      Rafa OUT.

    • brn442

      January 17, 2010 at 1:08 pm

      Well said — to say that Benitez has destroyed Liverpool is a bit silly. For all of his faults and there is a lot, Liverpool Football Club is better club on the pitch now than when he took over (of course that’s not saying much, he probably should go for the team being nowhere good enough to win the League, or anything)

      Liverpool’s “destruction” blame should start with the current owners and traced all the way back to the appointment of Graeme Souness, his failure to build on at the time, the greatest dynasty in club football by buying players that were simply not good enough to replace a legendary albeit aging squad,

      The boardroom never really bought the club into the new reality of the all seater, TV rich, global game that came into being from the ashes of the Taylor Report, whether it’s the loyalty to the boot room ethos of promoting mangers from within, an era that ended five years too late with the well meaning but awkward appointing of co-managers Evans and Houllier, or Club’s clumsiness in not harnessing the full potential of its rich history via global branding/marketing the way Manchester United/Arsenal did, (Liverpoolfc.TV ?). Not decisively acting 10-15 years ago to expand or build and new stadium, things that have cost the club tens of millions in lost revenue and purchasing power. I can go and on, Rafa is a blip on a near two decades of underachievement at Anfield.

      • Kopite in OK

        January 17, 2010 at 4:07 pm


        I am not going to disagree in saying that the owners are not at fault, because they are not exactly helping the situation either. I mean, c’mon, when you refuse to invest a single penny out of your own pocket to support a club that you are the owner of (and only for profitablility), then you have no business being there. The owners forget that yes you want to make a profit, but LFC is NOT a full business. This is a football club, a culture. Scousers breathe and live Liverpool Football Club…and we (LFC supporters) deserve owners who are willing to go the extra mile to PROVE that they want to win! It’s just sad to see that they are in it for themselves and nothing more.

        Anyway, to go on record and state that our club is in a better situation now (performance wise) than we were when Rafa took over, is a massive overstatement. Benitez didn’t win the Champions League with his own players, but Houllier’s. The same can be said about the 2006 FA Cup Final triumph…

        Look at all the players Rafa has bought, the amount of money spent, and the amount of players that are still at the club. It’s shocking. The most notable failings when it came to the transfer window: Fernando Morientes, Peter Crouch, Robbie Keane…

        Here is a detailed list:

        Rafa’s tactics have been pretty bizzare as of late and there have been times in the past where his decisions have cost us important matches. For example, Rafa took us to the Champions League Final in 2007. In that match, we went down 2 nil with 15-20 mins ago and we needed to get a quick score in. But what does Rafa do? Waits until there’s less than 10 minutes in the match before bringing on Peter Crouch and immediately we hit one back. Result? We lose 2-1.

        His belief to “not lose” rather going for the win has cost us precious points in the league and his predictable 4-5-1 (WITH TWO DEFENSIVE MIDFIELDERS) has made it easy for opponents to scout and prepare for their match with us. OH and don’t forget spending 20m for an injured player (Aquilani) who was supposed to replace Alonso (who Rafa toyed around with in the previous season), yet only is trying to convert his to a defensive minded role.

        I am sorry. Not good enough. Ever.

        • brn442

          January 18, 2010 at 1:13 am

          I agree with you Kopite with most of what you’ve said about Rafa but you made my point when you said that he won the Champions League with Houllier’s players (although I could have sworn Alonso and Garcia were his.) That Istanbul team was the worst I’ve seen get to a CL final ever – certainly in a Liverpool shirt, credit to them for winning the damn thing the way they did but the gulf in class between them and Milan in terms of player quality was shocking. I was just as embarrassed as I was joyful when they won.

          Man for man, they are simply a better team now than they were that night but I did say “of course that’s not saying much, he probably should go for the team being nowhere good enough to win the League, or anything,” and if Rafa gets the sack in the morning I wouldn’t shed a tear.

          Rafa’s ridiculous rotation policy a few years back, his lack of signing/holding on to a quality second striker, or decent squad players, and as you’ve said – his head scratching tactics doesn’t help. However, I’m old enough to see how the culture of mediocrity as gripped the club the past 20 years, which was my point. The irony that the owners are probably to broke to sack him speaks volumes.


        January 17, 2010 at 11:35 pm

        “Not decisively acting 10-15 years ago to expand or build and new stadium, things that have cost the club tens of millions in lost revenue and purchasing power.” Yes, this is what you see as the problem and not Rafa. Surelly I am telling you in five years to come when we will be playing in championship some will re write your sentence but only changis few words. It will be read as follows:
        “Not decisively sacking the fat spaniard early and find a better replacement and stop wasting millions of pounds that cost us relegation.”

  14. Attaturk

    January 17, 2010 at 9:54 am


  15. Joel

    January 17, 2010 at 9:24 am

    Yet another reason not to like Liverpool.

  16. Alan

    January 17, 2010 at 8:40 am

    Actually blaming Lucas for yesterday as well when he has being one of the better performers in the side this season…that just shows the knee jerk reactions that can take place. The player isn’t the greatest but if all the players but in the effort like him we wouldn’t be in the situation we are….

  17. Alan

    January 17, 2010 at 8:36 am

    What do Americans no about football ffs…stick to what you know!

    • ovalball

      January 17, 2010 at 9:33 am

      You have a nice Sunday, too.

    • Kopite in OK

      January 17, 2010 at 12:06 pm

      When are Britons going to realise that football is global ffs…


      January 17, 2010 at 11:16 pm

      Ok. Thn stick with your fat Rafa and we will see who really know footbal.

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