A deal to secure the services of Ferdinand Torres moved closer to reality over the weekend and at a quicker pace than I expected. According to one of Sundays we will sign Torres having “in principle” agreed a deal with Atletico Madrid. Rick Parry will open talks this week.
Benitez has recently criticized the length of time it has taken to close down deals and the Torres one, if it is a reality, is one we can’t afford to let slip through our hands. Strikers are probably going to be at a premium this summer and now we have Arsenal entering the market looking for more firepower after departure of Henry. Reports today say Atletico Madrid have already turned down bids for Torres from at least two other Spanish clubs. Time for Parry to earn his money?
Securing the deal will at least allay some of the premature talk that’s been flying around regarding us and the transfer market this summer. Financially however, it won’t a pure cash deal as it looks like Luis Garcia might go the other way to Atletico with us paying something around £17m to £20m on top. Can we afford to let Garcia go? I won’t get personal about him until/if he goes but arguably we’ve a surfeit of midfielders so we can afford to make changes in this part of the squad. I don’t think Garcia will be the last, I expect others to go as well.
It’s no secret that getting a decent forward is a priority. Whether Torres will turn out to be answer to our problems remains to be seen. I personally would have preferred us to go for David Villa but Torres was a close second. Why Villa? Experience. He is proven and tested in the Champions League and at slightly higher level with Valencia. Nonetheless Torres is an exciting prospect but will he be worth the outlay? There will a great deal of pressure on him and Benitez to get this right. Not least I suspect from the new owners and the fans but for different reasons.
If Benitez has his way it won’t stop there. His pursuit for a winger continues. He still hasn’t given up hope on Malouda but it looks like the winger prefers to move to London which might put Benfica’s Siamo back in the frame.
So, do we have the money to do this, or is it just paper talk? I guess we will only know when one these players appears on the back of the red tops striking the traditional “new signing pose” Liverpool shirt on with scarf held aloft!
Two people who appear to have no future at Anfield are Michael Owen and Djibril Cisse. The Owen issue is interesting as apparently Gerrard and Carragher have urged Benitez to resign him however I’ve always felt this wouldn’t happen click here to see my previous ramblings on this subejct.
Mindful of the need to wheel and deal Benitez has said no more loans for Cisse.
“If another club wants him, they must buy him. We don’t want another loan,”
Reports are that Bolton are interested which seems to make sense as Anelka is linked with a move away, possibly back to Arsenal. Cisse’s camp seem keen said his representative Ranko Stojic.
“It is true that there has been some contact with Bolton. I have met up with Sammy Lee on one occasion. He impressed me, not just as a coach, but as a person. He is a fantastic man. We are meeting Liverpool next week to find out what they want to do.”
A fee of £8m has been mentioned, a drop of £6m from the £14m Houllier paid for him two seasons ago. Cisse remains our record transfer and presumably it would not go down too well if he continued to be so after his summer!