Liverpool Football Club has been linked with many star players since January, especially after the flash Stg 50 million plus spending spree which, although were almost entirely generated from the sale of Torres and Babel, sent out a clear message that FSG was ready to splash-the-cash in order to take the Reds back up the pecking order and amongst the elite of domestic and world football.
In the past couple of weeks, and even more intensely in the last few days, the media is leading us to believe that the Dalglish/Comolli management team is looking to bring in predominantly British talent. The likes of Charlie Adam, James McCarthy, Phil Jones, Gary Cahill, Ashley Young, Stewart Downing, Jordan Hendersen, Lee Catermole and Connor Wickham have all been linked and it is rumoured that the Reds have already tabled one or two bids for a couple of them. Transfer targets from the European market are also being mentioned, yet three that had been hitting the headlines, namely Taiwo (signed for Milan), Coentrao (prefers Real) and Hazard (will probably stay at Lille) seem to have fallen by the wayside.
Last summer’s summer transfer policy was incredibly disastrous, and the Reds need to work very diligently to rectify these errors which have left a hole in the coffers and a shallow squad to show for. When you consider the likes of Joe Cole (9 PL starts) and Milan Jovanovic (5 PL starts) signed on a free but earning a hefty Stg 120,000 (+/- a pound here and there) a week, or Konchesky, Poulsen and Brad Jones that cost around Stg 12 million, there is no other perspective than a disastrous one. Apparently, even the likes of Degen, El Zhar and Insua, even though loaned out, remained on the Club’s payroll. That’s 8 would-be first team players who essentially gave nothing back, not to mention the brilliant idea of loaning out Alberto Aquilani to Juventus after we had spent a whole season curing his ankle and bringing him back to an acceptable level of fitness. It really looks bleak in hindsight doesn’t it?
Dalglish and Comolli will have to be wiser this time round. FSG want to drastically reduce what is considered to be the fourth highest wage bill in the PL at around Stg 120 million and which incidentally did not fruit any title or Champions League football for two seasons running. Having the fourth highest payroll and finishing 7th and 6th respectively does not sound right either does it?
It is common knowledge that Comolli works his magic around statistics. It is also a known fact that Dalglish works his magic around team spirit. The predicament here is that for us to get the players we need there are several parameters to consider: player’s Club willingness to sell, capital outlay, player’s wish to wear Liverpool’s Red, player’s personal terms! These four factors are paramount to any signing. The dilemma to sell then hangs on the following: a Club interested in the player’s services, the Reds’ asking price, the player’s willingness to move to that Club and his wage expectations. Not simple is it?
Do you think the Club is really looking to bring in predominantly young British talent to Anfield? Do you think we will still sign 1 or 2 star players? Are the likes of Young, Downing, Adam and Cahill considered stars in your book? Do you still think that the Reds command respect and attraction from international football stars?