It’s nearly three years since Daniel Pacheco made his debut for the first team under Rafael Benitez, replacing Alberto Aquilani against Fiorentina. Tales of this wonder kid, who had been doing brilliant things in Liverpool’s reserves, helping them win the League title, had been spreading like wildfire and filled supporters with hope that the club had unearthed another Fowler or Gerrard.
Three managers, Hodgson, Dalglish and Rodgers, have been in charge of Liverpool since that Champions League match and so far this player has failed to flourish under any of them. Consecutive loan spells at Norwich, Atletco Madrid and Rayo Vallecano followed, with Madrid even having the option to buy Pacheco. And now, the elevation of Sterling, Suso and Morgan, combined with the presence of squad players like Shelvey and Henderson, further undermines his chances of forging a career at Liverpool. So was all the hype false? When I had seen Pacheco play he looked skilful and scored some good goals. Although I’d have to admit, I did think he needed to bulk up a bit if he was to cope with the rigours of the Premier League.
Maybe under Brendan Rodgers, who thanks to an unfortunate transfer window finds himself with a depleted squad and a lack of quality options up front, Pacheco may get one more chance to show what he can do. Maybe he’s been unlucky. Or maybe he was overhyped. But it’s a bit disconcerting to see a young player with his supposed quality fail to make it at the club.
Three seasons is a long time for Pacheco to go without establishing himself. Don’t forget, this is a player who won the Golden Boot at the 2010 European Under-19 Championship so he undoubtedly has talent. When he was loaned to Norwich I was under the impression, like many, that it was an opportunity for him to get first team football and gain experience. However, the fact he was offered to Atletico on a permanent deal doesn’t bode well.
I would have thought the appointment of Rodgers as manager, who favours a fluid and skilful style of play, along with FSG’s policy of developing young players and introducing them to Liverpool’s first team, would be good news for this type of footballer. Hopefully Pacheco gets his chance to shine and takes it. I think it’s now or never Dani.