As the clock ticks away towards the end of the January transfer window, the events which have taken place during the past three days will shape the immediate future of this football club. The news that Liverpool and Chelsea agreed on terms and conditions for Torres to move to London was a bitter pill to swallow. Some may argue that it is now useless pondering on the why’s and how’s of this transfer mini soap-opera but many questions still remain unanswered and it is important to determine what exactly pushed Torres to the limit and hence his request to be transferred.
Getting used to Liverpool without Torres is one thing. It’s Torres playing for the Blues of Chelsea which will never be stomached. It would have been more acceptable if El Nino moved to another country. Chelsea play hosts to Liverpool next Sunday and it will be interesting to gauge the reaction of the Liverpool section inside Stamford Bridge. I’m pretty sure Torres will be in for rough treatment.
Torres is now history, and it’s time to move on and give some space to the new look Liverpool side featuring new additions, Luiz Suares – El Pistolero – and Andy Carroll. In Suarez Liverpool have a player who can create goals. Andy Carroll has a knack at being at the right place at the right time to head goalwards. Make no mistake, the Englishman is not only good in the air, he is also a frightening prospect when taking shots. It would be unfair to say that the class of Torres is lacking, although at first glance this seems to be sound judgement. Nonetheless, Liverpool have struck gold in bringing over these two players – future Liverpool teams will not be dependent on a single player to deliver the goods as was the case with Torres. Dalglish’s philosophy is to defend and attack as a team – it’s the build-up to the goal which is of most importance; how the goal is scored is irrelevant. Hence the reason why Suarez has been brought in. With Suarez, Meireles and Gerrard, Liverpool have a guaranteed super supply-line and I’m excluding Kelly and Johnson who many times kick-start attacks. Carroll will be asked to play infront of Suarez, Gerrard and Kuyt and latch onto passes and finish off. Focus will be on how to serve the forward player on a silver plate. Straightforward tactic, football made easy, total football. If Carroll is out injured, Suarez can take the role of main striker, but given his lack of Premiership experience, I believe Carroll will feature in this area for the time-being.
The team has been rocked by the departure of Torres. With an important game coming up in less than forty-eight hours, Dalglish and his coaching stuff need to ensure everybody is mentally fit to pull on the Red shirt and dispense of an irritating Stoke side. The players would have been the first to realise that Torres’ future lies elsewhere and will know that there’s no place for emotion in the wake of big money transfers. They will be buoyed by the apparent urgency of Liverpool’s owners to buy big. NESV mean business and have proven to be witty and determined in striking deals and negotiating Torres’ transfer. Let’s face it, fifty million for a player who is injury-prone is not bad, not bad at all.
As the Blues prepare to parade their latest expensive signing, Liverpool will want to usher the new arrivals in the squad as quickly as possible. Both players will know that the fees spent to bring them over to Anfield will carry inevitable pressures and only time will tell if both can withstand the burden of wearing the Red shirt. Undoubtedly, they will be thrown in the thick of it all on Wednesday and if either one or both can get debut goals, the sour experience borne out of Torres’ sudden departure will be instantly forgotten. This is also a time for others to step forward and stake a claim in making the grade to the first eleven.
This is a time to hold one’s head up high. We’ve weathered every storm so far and this latest setback will only serve to propel us forward, safe in the knowledge that the man behind Liverpool’s resurgence is a man of authority, charisma, class and stature.
See you next time.