By Chris BreretonPREVIEW LIVERPOOL: Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson is back in full-blown crisis mode ahead of Bolton Wanderers' visit to Anfield here tomorrow.
Hodgson was never the fans' choice to replace Rafa Benitez pre-season and his credibility has now hit rock bottom after Wednesday's appalling performance led to relegation candidates Wolves securing a 1-0 victory – their first at Anfield for 26 years.
The loss left Liverpool in the bottom half of the table on 22 points – their lowest points tally heading into a New Year since 1953-54, when they were relegated from the top flight.
Liverpool's fans clearly want a change of management and they sang the name of Anfield great and former boss Kenny Dalglish during the Wolves match, a hammer blow to Hodgson's prestige and standing with the supporters.
But the defiant former Fulham manager risked alienating what few friends he has among the Liverpool faithful by questioning what had happened to the "famous Anfield support".
Hodgson said bluntly: "It's the way it is. He (Dalglish) was a rival for the job. I don't like it but it is the way it is.
"It's the Kop's way and Anfield's way of showing that they are not happy and I have to take the criticism on the chin.
"Ever since I came here the famous Anfield support has not really been here for whatever reason.
"I've had to live with it from the start. We're not deliberately losing matches and we're not deliberately going out not to play well.
"We need the supporters to try and help us along. Negativity does affect confidence. When things aren't going well, fans tend to do these things."
"I've seen things like this before. I know the players are working hard but at the moment it's not going right. There were very few players who came off the field and could say they did well (against Wolves)."
The visit of Bolton will not be easy for Liverpool with Owen Coyle's men in fine form so far this season and Hodgson accepted changes would have to be made although he argued fixture congestion – rather than form – was prompting him to alter his side.
"We've got some chances to freshen the team up and we'll have to continually do that anyway because there are so many games coming up," Hodgson added.
Despite losing to champions Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday, Bolton are still having a season to remember under Coyle and sit seven points ahead of Liverpool in sixth place.
A win for Bolton would put even more pressure on Hodgson and the attacking, attractive football Bolton are playing will bolster hopes they have what it takes to win at Anfield
However, Coyle went to Chelsea with only 17 players, where he named just six substitutes because of injury and his squad will be further depleted against Liverpool when Paul Robinson misses the game through suspension.
"We're low on numbers right now but we'll get on with it because there is a tremendous spirit in this football club," said Coyle.
"We were positive from the outset (against Chelsea) and we will look to maintain that positivity and focus when we visit Liverpool tomorrow.”
Liverpool will be missing Jamie Carragher (shoulder) and Jay Spearing (ankle) while Bolton will be without Gretar Steinsson, Sean Davis and Joey O’Brien because of knee problems, with Jay Samuel sidelined by a calf injury.