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Have Liverpool Bought the RIGHT British Players?

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With a flourishing finish towards the end of the season under King Kenny, many anticipated a flurry of transfer activity this summer. Every top name international under the sun was being linked with a move to Liverpool with the likes of Barcelona winger Jeffren Suarez being touted as a possible buy along with Juan Mata and even recent Arsenal signee Gervinho. To the dismay of many fans Kenny Dalglish has kept within the parameters of the specific criterion set by Liverpool’s current American owners, which was to buy young British talent who may have a higher resale value later on in their career.

Whilst this is not a bad thing entirely considering UEFA’s policy coming into play in European competition whereby the majority of squads must consist of home grown and national players; buying British talent does sound like a sound ploy. However there are two significant factors to take into consideration when a team of Liverpool’s stature considers buying British talent. The first is whether or not the player’s themselves are worth a punt, after all no player is guaranteed to succeed. The second is the actual transfer value itself of British players. The sums are extraordinary considering some of the British players Liverpool have brought have barely had more then a handful of season between them.

The jury will be out on four of Liverpool’s British players who between them have cost an exorbitant amount of eighty million pounds. Whilst Stewart Downing is a seasoned campaigner within the Premier League and with more then twenty England caps behind him, he will most certainly need to hit the ground running. Jordan Henderson, the recent acquisition from Sunderland for a “meagre” twenty million pounds may have his work cut out to get into the team with the likes of Dirk Kuyt and Suarez being preferred on the right side of a three pronged attack. Liverpool’s offensive line will already be looking to accommodate Stewart Downing on the left side and of course Andy Carroll who will be the target man.

One must not discount Charlie Adam’s who was brought to provide creation and invention in the middle of the park, something Liverpool have lacked since the departure of the influential Spaniard Xabi Alonso. The problem with this of course is he’ll be competing against seven other central midfielders for two spots, one of which is guaranteed to be reserved for talismanic figure Steven Gerrard. Two other players he’ll be up against are Alberto Aquilani and Raul Meireles, two class players in their own right. It does beg the question were some of these British signings worth the lofty price tags they were purchased for? Especially when two of the Young British players we brought specialise in position we already have quality players in?

Of course last but not least is Liverpool’s record signing Andy Carroll. Whilst in theory the ridiculous sum of thirty five million pounds paid for his services may debase all sense of reality (especially considering how Barcelona paid Valencia just over thirty million for David Villa) the risk could pay off. One thing Andy Carroll did at his time with Newcastle was feed off quality service from the likes of Joey Barton and Kevin Nolan. If his shot to goal ratio was decent at Newcastle, it is surely likely to improve at Liverpool with the likes of Steven Gerrard and Stewart Downing providing quality service from the midfield area. A twenty goal plus season will at least ensure Liverpool a place within the Champions League, any more may even offer Liverpool a sniff at possibly winning the league, though this may seem far too ambitious to predict before the season even starts.

Whether these British signings come through or not, the jury will be out this season because of the war chest King Kenny was armed with. With Liverpool comes expectations and there will certainly be great expectations from Andy Carroll. But I’m sure he has broad enough shoulders to cope with the expectations of Merseyside.

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A Liverpool fan whose a realist. Born in Birmingham

Got a degree in Politics and aspire to be a sports journalist however.

I love Cheese Toast and Donnor Kebabs amongst playing footy and weightlifting. Things that annoy me? Women who talk during football, Manchester United fans and the perm hairstyle.

7 comments

  • Bill says:

    We haven’t bought the right British players, simply because the right ones want European football and have gone to or stayed at the clubs who can give them what they want.

  • Dunc says:

    We have brought the right British players, yes.

  • Steve S says:

    I don’t understand why people think that FSG have set out a target of specifically ‘buy young British talent’. It’s nothing of the sort, it’s to buy the right players, British or foreign, in the right position in the team.

    No one knows whether Liverpool have overspent on these players, and never will until such time that they’re sold on for a profit/loss and assess the impact to the team.

    Downing wasn’t overpriced when you compare him to Young’s transfer to Man U. He had a year more on his contract and is no more an england regular than Young is. Man U also spent approx the same amount of money on Jones as Liverpool did on Henderson, except Henderson has an england cap to his name. At no point last season did Jones even look like getting anywhere near the england team.

    As for Carroll, everyone should know by now that the owners made it clear that they wanted Carroll plus 15m from the Torres deal. It was Newcastle that set the price, and therefore also set Torres’ price. Yes he was overpriced, but then so was Torres.

    I do wish people will stop posting articles like this and wait until the end of the season. Then judge. Don’t pre-judged just cos of how much someone cost.

    • Haider Ali says:

      Well firstly a number of quotes can be attributed to John Henry stating how “young British talent would be preferential”. Secondly the barometer you use to assess whether somebody has overspent is of one person’s track record within the league they’re currently plying their trade in and secondly comparison to players who have been brought within the same bracket. For instance if you had a choice between Sergio Aguero for £39m and Andy Carroll for £35m, who would you buy honestly?

      And Stewart Downing was certainly over priced considering his quality and his age. Compared to Ashley Young, despite being a Liverpool fan; I have to relucatantly admit Ashley Young is better. Being two years younger also makes him more worthwhile in the long run despite him only having a year to run on his contract.

      And by admitting YOURSELF THAT cARROLL “YES HE WAS OVERPRICED” you are foolishly contradicting everything you said and virtually agreeing with my point.

  • Red Din says:

    Steve S I totally agree,

    Moreover, FSG are in the business for success, they have started to invest heavily into the team we all love. I believe they should be given credence for that at the very least.
    FSG have also gone against their normal modus operandi and installed a man I hold in the greatest esteem, personally, Kenny Dalglish, as our new manager.
    FSG would normally, looking at their American operations, have gone for someone akin to the new manager at Chelsea.
    However, we seem to have triumphed because the cub, the players and us fans, we all need to heal. Under the wing of Mr Dalglish, and only under his wing, can we do this in the shortest timeframe possible, because, in the fast paced world of football, time is a commodity we do not have.

    As a collective team, FSG, Comolli and Kenny Dalglish have identified who they need to fire us back into the top category of world football, where we belong. This can only be done if we work on the foundations first, by that I mean the English premier league, that is our bread and butter, we have to make an impact there first, then, with that success, relatively speaking, we can move on to conquer competitions and markets played on a bigger stage I.e. Champion league.

    The players being brought in are firstly, men accustomed to the English premier league, secondly, used to being the subject of scrutiny within the team they came from, because they were their best player and usually the key component or match winner. And thirdly, all these men show leadership qualities, imagine having an army of men ALL willing to stand up and be counted, rather than hide behind one mam with a personality i

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