by Brian Reece
We have been blessed over the years with some of the best defenders this country has ever seen, but right now we are in trouble, the problem lies in the lack of quality cover, what would happen if Agger, Carragher and Skrtel get injured or suspended, what reliable, quality alternatives do we have.
The answer is none really, yes we have Wilson and Kelly both good young prospects but not able to deal with the likes of Man Utd, Chelsea, Man City as a partnership, Kyrgiakos is simply an accident waiting to happen but cannot be criticised for willingness or effort, so what can be done with only two weeks away from the start of the season, as much as we all have are own preferences of who we would like to sign, the fact is it may not happen until January.
Why? Well we still have players who we cannot sell or are making life difficult for the club to sell them due to their unrealistic wage requests, personal terms demands, or just plan stubbornness to move on, it may sound resentful towards players like Jovanovic, Cole, N’Gog, Aquilani, El Zhar and Polusen but we need to move these players on so that we can go back into the transfer market and obtain a good quality Central Defender also a top quality Left Back.
If Liverpool could sell at least 2 or 3 of the above players we could realistically buy the required defenders we need, Scott Dann is a good prospect especially now that Birmingham’s financial situation has been exposed and are vulnerable at this moment in time, Newcastle’s left back Enrique is also another good prospect both of these are proven in the Premier League, there are others just as good or better that play in the Premiership, but not all are available at present, or does Dalglish take a chance on a foreign player with no experience of the English game, hopeful that they adjust to the Premiership quickly.
The fact remains that our defensive frailties has the potential to cost us dearly in our pursuit for a Champion League spot, Liverpool’s past success was built on defensive superiority and stability, building from the back, Hansen & Lawrenson were the prime example of a defensive partnership that had perfect understanding because they constantly played together and were not subjected to a needless rotation policy, it didn’t matter if it was a League Cup match or a regular Saturday afternoon game, there names were the first on the team sheet.
If we are to achieve our aim of a Champion League place then we have to have quality Central Defenders and full backs, and a regular, stable line up, we need to look forward, Jamie Carragher has only two seasons at best left in him, Agger is injury prone and Skrtel does not pair well without Carragher or Agger, so we have a dilemma that needs addressing now, am sure Dalglish and FSG are fully aware of this situation and will confront it at the nearest opportunity both when financial and player availability is right.
If we wait until January to bring in new defensive players then sadly it could be too late for a realistic shot at a Champions League place, we may on the other hand be well placed if we can keep a stable back four and escape injuries, when Dalglish sets out his plans to Defending Anfield he needs to address to current players he has and act with speed, he must try and resolve the current issue of selling unwanted players and securing our defensive line.