Liverpool’s recovery in recent weeks, bolstered by Saturday’s derby win over Everton at Anfield, has momentarily silenced Rafael Benitez’s critics, assuming they can keep going and secure fourth spot in the Premier League.

Perhaps it’s an indication of how their standards have slumped, but matchwinner Dirk Kuyt has been one of the Reds’ best players for a couple of years now. He might be a triumph of application over ability, but if Rafa had a few more with the Dutchman’s attitude he’d be alright. Harry Kewell he aint.

Elsewhere on the managerial front, Arsene Wenger looks to be facing a credibility crisis after Chelsea overcame his dispirited-looking Arsenal side with almost equal ease to Man U – and it was nothing to do with the Stamford Bridge ball boys being a tad on the slow side.

Meanwhile, Roberto Mancini has now lost as many games as Mark Hughes thanks to Saturday’s disastrous defeat at Hull. So much for his lucky scarf.

Fortune is starting to favour Phil Brown — a miked-up dead man walking not so long ago — now that he’s decided to let his players (not least Stephen Hunt, who Mick McCarthy’s woe-begotten Wolves could really have done with) do his talking on the pitch. And not at half-time either.