They delivered World Series titles for the Red Sox, but can Fenway Sports Group repeat the trick at Liverpool FC?
Sol Campbell discusses Kenny Dalglish's sacking by Liverpool and John Terry's selection by England for Euro 2012.
After a season in which Liverpool narrowly missed out on the English Premier League title, it seems astonishing that the Reds, following their 2-1 loss to Manchester United on Sunday, are all but finished in the race for the final Champions League spot.
Kenny Dalglish's name is synonymous with Liverpool, one of England's most successful football teams, but after a disappointing second spell in charge as manager he has been sacked by the club's American owners.
He might be one of the world's most expensive players but Fernando Torres endured a miserable return to Anfield as Chelsea were beaten 4-1 by Liverpool in the English Premier League.
Martin Skrtel's early own goal gave Fulham a historic first win at Anfield on Tuesday and left Liverpool in danger of finishing outside the top eight in the English top flight for the first time since 1954.
An 87th minute header from beleaguered striker Andy Carroll handed Liverpool a 2-1 victory over Merseyside rivals Everton in the semifinal of the English FA Cup on Saturday.
In the March 13 Merseyside derby, Steven Gerrard scored his 87th, 88th and 89th league goals for Liverpool, the club with which he signed his first professional contract 15 years and 400 first-team appearances ago. Gerrard is one of several one-club Premier League players in their 30s -- Jamie Carragher (also Liverpool), Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes (both Manchester United), Tony Hibbert (Everton), Ledley King (Tottenham Hotspur), and Chelsea captain John Terry (if you don't count the six appearances he made while on loan at Nottingham Forest at 20 years old) -- but they're few and far between in these days of big-money transfers. That wasn't always the case; here is a selection of more or less well-known one-club players from the recent and distant past of English soccer.
With the derisory and ironic chants of "Hodgson for England" from the Anfield crowd ringing fresh in his ears, following Liverpool's stunning and stultifying 1-0 home loss to then bottom-placed Wolves, coach Roy Hodgson committed probably the final fatal two verbal missteps in what has been a tortuous six-month reign.
World Sport reporter Zayn Nabbi describes the scene inside the stadium as paramedics tried to revive Muamba.
Premier League champions Manchester United have moved four points clear of rivals Manchester City at the top of the table after winning 5-0 at bottom club Wolverhampton on Sunday.
Five things we learned in Barclays Premier League action Saturday:
As Cup final victories go, Liverpool's Carling Cup final success (3-2 in a penalty shootout) over Cardiff City on Sunday was particularly unconvincing. When a Premier League team plays a side from a lower division, even if it plays a team from lower down the same division, anticlimax is probably the best it can hope for; to win by a comfortable two- or three-goal margin.
Manager Kenny Dalglish is determined to use Liverpool's first trophy win in six years as a catalyst for future success, following Sunday's dramatic penalty shootout win in the English League Cup final.
The Best -- One of the first black football pioneers, Clyde Best
England winger Theo Walcott scored twice as Arsenal fight back from going two goals behind to sensationally thrash north London rivals Tottenham 5-2, a result that lifts Arsene Wenger's side back into fourth place in the Premier League table.
Senior Sports Illustrated writer Grant Wahl is surprised at how Liverpool FC has handled the Suarez case.
Liverpool striker Luiz Suarez apologized Sunday for refusing to shake hands with Manchester United's Patrice Evra before the start of an English Premier League match.
Luis Suarez returned to Liverpool colors after an eight-game ban but the Uruguay striker couldn't transform his side's home fortunes as they were held to a 0-0 draw by Tottenham in the English Premier League.
Football agent says wealthy Europeans aren't investing in soccer as they once did.
Police in England arrested a man Saturday on suspicion of making a racially abusive gesture at a high-profile soccer match between Liverpool and Manchester United earlier that day, they said Sunday.
FIFA President Sepp Blatter on past corruption scandals, reforms, Brazil's World Cup preparations and racism in football.
Liverpool dumped Manchester United out of the English FA Cup with a dramatic late winner from Dirk Kuyt at Anfield on Saturday.
Chelsea's title chances took another dent on Saturday as they dropped points away to Norwich City in the English Premier League.
Captain Steven Gerrard scored the only goal from the penalty spot as Liverpool beat Manchester City 1-0 in Wednesday's first leg of their English League Cup semifinal.
English football club Liverpool apologized Sunday after an opposing team's player complained of being abused by supporters.
The head of a football anti-racism group has called for the English Football Association to charge Liverpool with bringing the game into disrepute over the club's response to Luis Suarez's eight-match ban for using racist language at Patrice Evra.
Manchester City moved three points clear at the top of the English Premier League with a convincing 3-0 home win over sixth-placed Liverpool on Tuesday.
Five things we learned from the week's action in the Barclays Premier League
Liverpool recovered from going a goal behind to defeat Newcastle 3-1 on Friday, a result that lifts them up to fifth place in the English Premier League table.
The Manchester clubs City and United moved further ahead in England's Premier League on Wednesday, while Luis Suarez's Liverpool lost ground on the leaders after dropping points at Wigan.
Five things we learned from the weekend's action in the Barclays Premier League.
Liverpool's hopes of qualifying for next season's Champions League have taken a knock after a shock 1-0 Premier League defeat at struggling Fulham on Monday.
This Saturday will mark the anniversary of Fenway Sports Group's takeover of Liverpool and it comes just a few days after UK magazine FourFourTwo published its annual Football Rich List. The magazine ranked FSG owner John W Henry at 20th in the list, and calculated that each Premier League point Liverpool had earned since the purchase has cost Henry a whopping £7.5 million ($11.7M). (The team it beat last week, local rivals Everton, comes in at £48,000 per point, given that owner Bill Kenwright paid £20M for it in 2004.)
Dalglish has a sip of the managerial whine
The new Barclays Premier League season is upon us and the teams are jockeying for position on the starting line. Here are my thoughts on how the pack is likely to break up this season: the top six, the bottom five, and the tight bunch in the middle. The clubs are not necessarily listed in order but I'm tipping Manchester United to take the title:
This summer is quickly turning into one of the most frenzied transfer periods in recent years. In the Premier League alone, Manchester United, Manchester City and Liverpool have already spent a combined £77 million ($122.9M) on new players, a figure that could easily double before the end of August, as even bigger moves (Samir Nasri to Man Utd, Wesley Sneijder to Man Utd, Ezequiel Lavezzi to City, Stewart Downing to Liverpool) potentially come to fruition. Then there's Chelsea, yet to sign a new high-profile recruit, and Arsenal, who'll be eager to add to the £9 million ($14.3M) outlay for Gervinho in the wake of some high-profile departures. It's feasible that total spending among the 20 first division English teams will top £400 million ($638.8M) this year.
Editor's note: This is Part 3 of a four-part imaginary tournament between 16 of the all-time greatest club teams in soccer history. Parts 1 and 2 can be found here.
For the last few months, Liverpool has emitted a perceptible hum. In the red half of the city, groups of people chatter like charged particles, each collision redoubling the thrill, heightening the pitch of the buzz. It is not often in modern soccer -- where the phrase "results driven business" justifies every half-cocked decision -- that recruitment must grasp at something so ethereal, so wishy-washy or impressionist, as mood. But the swell of feeling around Anfield is so great as to pop your ears before you are through the turnstile: crown King Kenny.
As anyone who has ever experienced one will know, a soccer match in England is not for the fainthearted. Even in these safer, more sanitary days, you'll still hear things shouted from the anonymity of the crowd that you might not hear over the dinner table. And that's a wonderful thing. For who among us did not giggle like schoolboys when the intricacies of David and Victoria Beckham's love life were openly speculated upon? Or when one man's struggle with schizophrenia gave us the classic, "there's only two Andy Gorams"? Association Football, borne out of the anarchic crush of the preindustrial village game, is chaotic, passionate and, at times, just plain rude, which is of course why so many of us are in thrall to it all. But is there a line that shouldn't be crossed or is everything up for grabs?
By the time Fernando Torres actually signed his contract with Chelsea on Monday, there were less than 15 minutes of the transfer window remaining. The clock was ticking, and when he put pen to paper, there was relief more than joy. His situation had reached a point of no return, he was in a corner, and yet the risk of having to return felt real. At times during deadline day, Torres had doubted the deal would go through. But a tense and difficult day -- a tense and difficult few months -- finally ended well for Torres. He got what he wanted.
If you're a Liverpool fan, you're probably pretty angry right now. You've won one game since September (albeit a pretty important one, against Manchester United), qualification to the knockout stage of the Champions League seems extremely improbable right now and you're sixth in the English Premier League, after finishing second last year.
On Sunday, Kenny Dalglish's wife, Marina, tweeted that for the first time in 20 years, she had woken up next to the Liverpool manager. Later that afternoon, at Old Trafford, for the first time in 20 years, Sir Alex Ferguson walked out for a game against Liverpool alongside a manager who had won the League.
Thoughts on the weekend's action in the Premier League:
In the thick of the Anfield soap opera, which has brought to the sports pages of British newspapers the orgy of hairdresser's-chair gossip usually confined to the TV mags, Sunday's Merseyside derby has become a minor subplot. New England Sports Ventures' stop-start and now concluded takeover, Tom Hicks' desperate interventions, anguished supporters' pleas ... the chronic uncertainty of Liverpool's future has left barely a column inch for the soccer.
NESV owner John W. Henry comments on his completed and protracted takeover of Liverpool Football Club.
Can a Texas court block a British court from allowing the sale of Liverpool FC to the owners of the Boston Red Sox? If that sounds like a strange question, it's because it concerns a curious mix of conflicts of law, international banking law, and the fate of one of soccer's most storied franchises. It is also a question that could lead to a legal showdown at 7 a.m. Friday, Texas time.
CNN's Phil Black reports on the court battle and bidding war for the Liverpool Football Club.
Liverpool FC have agreed in principle to sell the team to New England Sports Ventures. CNN's Alex Thomas reports.
Roy Hodgson always was likely to face two problems at Liverpool: that his football was too boring for the fans, and that his training was too boring for the players. A certain stodginess leading to long-term grumbling was perhaps to be expected, but what nobody predicted was that Liverpool would be as bad as it has been so far this season, and that there would be immediate outrage.
Although a top-flight club has won the League Cup every year since 1991, when Sheffield Wednesday beat Manchester United (and even then it was the first lower league club to spring such a surprise since 1975), Premiership clubs habitually feign indifference to winning it. Even if some of them want to, getting caught celebrating winning it is a no-no; a tacit admission that triumph in English soccer's secondary domestic knockout competition is the height of your ambitions.
Little pleases Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson more than the chance to revel in victory over Liverpool. Perhaps nothing. He launches in like a hippo charging toward a mudhole, energetically rolling around and making as much of a splash as possible.
The final whistle had barely blown on Liverpool's desperately bad 3-0 defeat at Manchester City on Aug. 23 when the message flashed up. A challenge was thrown down, a point made. Rafael Benítez had finally gone; those who wanted to see the back of him had got what they wanted and Roy Hodgson had taken over. But there was no immediate sign of improvement. In fact, Liverpool was even worse.
They do call the summer transfer window silly season, but this one's got me flummoxed.
Manchester City FC defender Kolo Toure tells CNN's Patrick Snell he is hopeful that Manchester City FC can win a trophy.
The streets of Madrid were packed with fans as the Spanish team arrived with the World Cup. CNN's Don Riddell reports.
The last six Premier League titles have been won by Chelsea or Manchester United, so it is hardly surprising that last season's shoulder-to-shoulder race for fourth place between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City captured the imagination. Fingernails in the north and the south were gnawed short as the two clubs exchanged the lead several times before Spurs took the fourth spot at Eastlands in the season's penultimate game.
Roy Hodgson arrived at Fulham in 2007 without much fanfare. He was regarded, probably largely because of an unhappy spell at Blackburn Rovers, as a mediocre manager who'd had reasonable success abroad with a string of mid-ranked countries -- Finland, Switzerland, Sweden -- but who couldn't really cut it at the highest level. His two years of rebuilding work at Internazionale in the 1990s, in which the Italian club finished seventh and third and reached the final of the UEFA Cup, was broadly ignored.
If Liverpool had played its entire season at home, it'd be in fourth right now, cosily certain of Champions League football after the summer and in absolutely no danger of finishing below noisy neighbors Everton. The team has taken an impressive 28 of the last 30 available league points at Anfield.
Atletico Madrid took a huge step towards reaching a first European final since 1986 by beating Liverpool 1-0 in the first leg of their Europa League semifinal on Thursday.
As a lone infantryman wistfully bugles a lamenting Last Post into the chill twilight air, Team Limey stands forlornly on the battlements of Castle Limey contemplating our final EPL column for SI.com. Together, over a last pint of ale, let's relive some highlights from our five years here. And what a five years it's been.
CNN's U.S.-based Arsenal fan iReporter tells CNN why Arsenal are a model football club.
CNN's Uganda-based Liverpool fan iReporter Aldrine Nsubuga vents his spleen over his side's loss to Lyon in the Champions League.
CNN's U.S.-based Arsenal fan iReporter laments AZ Alkmaar's defensive tactics during their draw with Arsenal.
Liverpool manager Rafael Benítez is not a happy man. In the past few seasons, he's had his own way in the transfer market, happily signing 3-4 big-name players each summer, spending an average of $70 million across the last four.
There's cigar smoke and perfume in the evening air as the thronging masses head to Castle Limey for our annual awards ceremony. Only one man is headed the other way: a winking, temperamental, petulant, prima donna flagging down a lift to Madrid. Are you sitting comfortably now, the chilled Taittinger bubbling to perfection? Team Limey takes the stage.
Ordinarily, Manchester United making a trip to Craven Cottage isn't much of a story. Fulham hasn't beaten United at home in league play since 1964. But an unusually high amount of attention is focused on this weekend's encounter.
Former Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel and former Liverpool striker Ian Rush discuss Saturday's game.
The headline English Premier League game this weekend sees second-place Chelsea visiting Old Trafford to face third-place Manchester United on Sunday. Usually a close affair, their first EPL meeting of the season was a 1-1 draw, as was their nail-biting Champions League final matchup last May.
It's a whisper that's slowly becoming a roar -- Liverpool for the title. Seasoned Reds fans in England's Northwest may be staying tight-lipped, but as grim economic recession stories multiply in the U.K. headlines, talk of a football renaissance in the European capital of culture is spreading through the back pages.
It's hard to believe nearly six months have passed since Spain began its title march at the European Championship and killing off one of the biggest jinxes in the soccer world. (Know the pheeling, Phillies fans?) Even today, despite a few nasty side plots, everything feels right on Planet Football.
The greatest show on earth is back in action. If you're looking at these rankings and coming to the conclusion that Champions League play seems to dominate, good for you. That's the biggest mountain-moving criteria we're using this time around. To us, the grandest club tournament in the world is the best gauge to determine who the movers and shakers are.
Soccernomics: the study of the relationship between human wants and the allocation of scarce resources in soccer, the world's most popular and globalized sport.
A year ago in this space, we dropped the hammer on Liverpool, which had inexplicably defied the odds and advanced to its second Champions League final in three years. But seeing as the Reds lost out to AC Milan, managed only another fourth-place finish in the English Premier League and finished the season without a single trophy, it was a tough call to leave them on the Rankings. Not even another Rafa Benítez miracle could save them.
Manchester United is running rampant. Last Saturday, the Red Devils demolished eighth-place Aston Villa 4-0 at Old Trafford and remain five points clear of Chelsea in the English Premier League race. The standard of United's soccer was so sublime, the score line actually flattered the losers.
World Soccer's Gordon McKerrow catches up with Liverpool's 21-year-old Dutch winger Ryan Babel, who is enduring a whirlwind first season at Anfield.
It's been nearly two weeks since English soccer was rocked by a set of extraordinary results in the FA Cup quarterfinals. But the scenes were so unusual, so unexpected and so refreshing that even now, they still warrant reflection and discussion.
CNN's Pedro Pinto asks why overseas investors are so keen to buy up English Premiere teams.
The biggest story in England this week is a team that's hardly English at all.
What's going on at Anfield? Liverpool was expected by many pundits -- ourselves included -- to be serious title contenders in the English Premier League this year.
Sometimes numbers don't quite add up. Less than a year ago, Tom Hicks and George Gillett Jr. bought Liverpool for $432 million. Or, rather, that's what the club's valuation was.
Fans of Liverpool look to buy the club amid uncertainty about the future of its U.S. owners. CNN's Jim Boulden reports.