Monday, July 09, 2007

Cash registers ring at Anfield, but for the right players?

After a very slow start to their moves in the transfer market, Liverpool have started spending (or attempting to), their latest bid being a 10m pound offer for Ajax winger Ryan Babel who has been heavily linked with Arsenal.

While Babel is considered to be highly rated by much of the football world, I would consider him highly overrated. I thought he was brilliant the first few times I saw him, but as time has gone by, he hasn’t really improved much as a player and doesn’t seem like he’ll make it in the Premiership.

Apparently Ajax are holding out for 13m+ for the 20 year old.

The 3.5m pound gap can certainly be negotiated, but I think Liverpool would be making a mistake to sign Babel. There is a reason Arsene Wenger didn’t already pull the trigger, even last season. Babel is a bit wayward and lacks a bit of killer instinct. I agree with Arsenal’s position not to pursue a transfer yet. Let Liverpool make the mistake.

With the sale of Djibril Cisse and Craig Bellamy, Liverpool have recouped much of the costs of signing Fernando Torres. There seems to more money left over, but I think clearly, while more costly, Ricardo Quaresma from FC Porto or Simao from Benfica is a better choice. More experienced, talented and a finished product, Quaresma especially has what Liverpool needs to win now. Babel, unless a surprised comes, won’t produce right away, if ever.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Drenthe showed what he was all about and would be the cheapest option for his class

7/09/2007 9:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That drenthe kid has no big time experience

Would be no different than Babel

7/09/2007 9:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

deffently right.
liverpool need another 2 world class players that can take them to the next level. those players are cost money but at the end of the day they bring results!!! all the rest are good but will not help liverpool to go to the next level!!!we had enough of medium and average players!!!

7/09/2007 9:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Liverpool have made approaches for both Quaresma and Simao, as well as Mancini. Obviously they plan to investigate all of their options before just dishing out more than what's required just to land a player, like Man U. Nani and Anderson are as unproven, and yet no one seems to raise the issue. SAF can do no wrong, eh?

7/09/2007 9:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Saw him on YouTube - looked amazing, but so did Julio Baptista. I just hope he doesn't turn out to be amazing, then I will be jealous.

Emirates homey.

7/09/2007 10:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are a classic idiot! When the hell did you become a better manager of footbal that Rafa? Babel is a great talent and will add flair and width to the team under Rafa's guidance. Maybe your article, if you ant to call it that, would work on dump people such as yourself.

7/09/2007 10:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

what a sap,what do you know about football, ryan babel is an excellent talent described by marco van basten as the next thierry henry, so shut your mouth you big time muppet!!!!

7/09/2007 10:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was working in Amsterdam for 2 months during the season last year. Babel was constantly the best player on the pitch for Ajax. You obviously not a fan of LFC & thus not fit to pass your opinion and the dealings of Rafa. YNWA

7/09/2007 10:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Muppets are the ones that just believe whatever raffa wants to do is right, noting wrong questioning a choice, unless you thump a bible the way you worship our manager.

7/09/2007 10:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We do not just believe whatever Rafa wants; we make out own judgments based on observation of the player and his qualities. YNWA

7/09/2007 11:00 PM  
Blogger Football Commentator said...

I too make my own judgements:

My judgement, seeing Babel play live on 3 occasions is that he has not improved at all in the 2 years since.

In the U-20 cup he was a good player. I am not denying that.

I dont think he is of the standard Liverpool needs to win right now. Liverpool have been out of the chase for how many seasons now? You need a player that can have an impact today the way that Quaresma can. Is Quaresma a guarantee? No, but he's a more polished player ready to produce good crosses for Torres to smash in the net NOW.

With Babel you have a kid aged 20 looking for his feet. You decide what you'd rather have.

7/09/2007 11:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Go for Demul; he is a natural winger, skillful and quick. He is better footballer than Babel.

7/09/2007 11:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why not have one player for now (Quaresma) and one for later/to develop (Babel).

Note they are wide players and will improve the team.

But I do wish people would stop bleating on that they think they know better than the manager. Rafa would expect every player he buys to improve - if they don't then they are allowed to go.

Just let the guy do his job. All this speculation is pointless, no one has kicked a ball yet!

7/09/2007 11:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why does everyone keep on going on about Quaresma? He is not that good! He faile dat Barcelona and is not as good as Ronaldo as he is behind him for Portugal. He is 23 so not that much older than Babel and reports from both Portugal and Spain indicate that he has a bit of an attitude problem. Simao is still our top target.

7/10/2007 12:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

20 years old is young, I agree, and your opinion is based by what I can gather, on what you have seen. However, Rafa is renowned for being a bit of a football geek. I'm sure he has done more than see this lad play 3 times and form a judgement. Bearing in mind that LFC have numerous scouts working for them... I think rafa knows what he's doing. Good luck to him! A) If he signs him B)Next season. I hope the kid does well if he signs! "IN RAFA WE TRUST"

7/10/2007 2:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, we all saw the impact Mark Gonzales had on the team. So, dishing out 13M ? sounds rather steep when betting on a chance.

Yes, I know, SAF spent more on the two kids - but that's no excuse, he has spent plenty of bad money in the past (anyone say Veron?) as has LFC (Collymore anyone? Cisse?) - but he also has better leverage and apparently - bigger pockets.

Babel is a bet. As with all bets, you win some, you lost some. Hopefully, this will be on the winnning side.

7/10/2007 4:53 AM  
Blogger Rio said...

so much talk about a winger and he goes sign another prospect. wasn't Jermaine Pennant enough of that sort of experiment?

come on rafa, get someone that's trustworthy and get a trophy ffs.

7/10/2007 5:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Listen if Rafa wants to sign him then I'll be happy to trust his judgement, he's our manager and in the 3 years he's been in charge he has turned the club around from being a disorganised rabble under our last manager into a team that has made at least one final in every season, far better than the egit who wrote this. Furthermore to Rio yes Pennant had a bad start but in the latter stages of last season he was very good and had a good game in CL final, he could be a real star this year. What really puzzles me is that so many of you have not realised that Rafa doesn't overly like 4-4-2 and he prefers a 4-2-3-1 system, check out our really big games, and it is in that system I think Babel would be perfect but time will tell, I'll admit if I'm wrong but I have a feeling if the guy who wrote this is wrong he'll never admit to it

7/10/2007 1:11 PM  
Blogger Football Commentator said...

"I'll admit if I'm wrong but I have a feeling if the guy who wrote this is wrong he'll never admit to it "

I think I admitted I was wrong about Babel. In the article about Babel (link in the article) I raved about him. I admitted in the current article that I didnt see the progress I expected. A year ago I would have said "go for it" and what I am saying now is "I doubt he'll make it".

If that is not an example of at least backtracking, I dont know what is.

7/10/2007 2:46 PM  
Blogger Rio said...

to the anonymous above.

it's pretty obvious liverpool is playing 4-2-3-1 since xabi alonso and mascher can both be considered holding mids...

the focus of 4-2-3-1 is to utilize wing spaces. The winger's main function is to transport the ball forward instead of producing striking runs like the wingers in dutch 4-3-3 (Ajax).

Babel might be an ok striker, but his ability to function as wing midfield has not been proven. and liverpool is trying to make a premiership run, possibly again, with an unproven winger....

7/10/2007 5:08 PM  
Blogger Rio said...

another way to word this would be:

in ajax babel had davis behind him.

who does he have behind him in pool?
i hope people aren't suggesting mascher to make long distance distributions...

7/10/2007 5:10 PM  
Blogger kwkhong said...

Just because Arsene didn't sign him doesn't make him a flop. You guys sound as if you've known Babel all his live after watching 3 games. And you guys must be super scouts to know that he hasn't improved after 3 games.

At 20 yrs of age, the talent is no doubt there. If you look at the 8mil Theo Walcott, everybody says he's a gem and he was cheap.

Then we signed Torres and everybody says he is a Reyes. If we signed Quaresma, he would be a reject as Portugal plays Ronaldo instead. If we signed Mancini, then ppl will say Man U signed the better of the brazilians Anderson...it will never end these wannabe sports pundits...

Just because Arsenal didn't sign Babel doesn't mean he's bad...it's just plain simple fact that Arsenal didn't have the cash. They had just used up all cash on Sagna and Da Silva. If they sell Reyes then maybe they can sign another.

7/17/2007 5:11 AM  

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