Apologies for the lack of activity however, it’s been a quiet week of busy doing nothing, but plenty of snow and rumour.
The weather has accounted for the Spurs game on Sunday. No doubt Sky, who were due to broadcast this, tried to put viewers in the warm and snugness of their own home before the safety of those fans actually prepared to brave the elements make an effort to go to the game, and try to persuade the powers that be to put the game on at all costs even if means the public having to re-enact Captain Scott’s trek to the Antarctic, OK Stanley Park!
On the other hand isn’t there something wrong that clubs like us can invest copious amounts of money to ensure the pitch remains playable in conditions like this only to find that, for all their efforts, they can’t play because the outside of the ground is treacherous? Of course the definition of “treacherous” is in the eye of the beholder. No doubt those who were planning to go on Sunday had to negotiate the same conditions earlier this week on their way to work, school or to the shops! Why should a trip to the match suddenly be different? Is it any different from the 60s, 70s or 80s when matches used to go ahead – we live in nannying times?
I’m trying to work out if the cancellation might be in our favour. It means that Mascherano will not miss the game but instead will miss the… nope, forget it I’ve just remembered he would have been injured anyway. However, it does give a small amount of breathing space for the likes of Torres to get fit. I seems our man, in-between posing with handfuls of snow for the papers (it’s only a matter of time before a sledge or a snowman is drafted in) has been putting in plenty of extra hours to bring himself back to fitness.
Elsewhere slowly the frame of our transfer window is beginning to materialise. I don’t think there are any surprises over who might leave. They are “The Usual Suspects” the line up, complete with ID parade identification, is as follows Babel, Voronin, Dossena, Degen and much, much less so to the point that I even hesitate to include them, Benayoun and Riera Who will be Keyser Soze and fool the lot of us?
Bids for Benayoun and Riera, are from Olympiakos but these have, not surprisingly, been rebuffed. The first player to really hit the dust appears to be Andrea Dossena who has returned to Italy more specifically Napoli for £4.5m. As he was signed for £7m I guess Dossena won’t go down as one of Rafa’s most successful purchases? Was he given a fair crack of the whip in terms of appearances and played a position that suited him? However, for a full back his mobility and defensive awareness often seemed to be lacking. It’s difficult to make the transition to the Premiership as well as settle in a new country and it’s not just Liverpool who have experienced this with overseas players. Perhaps if Dossena had been given more time he might have cut it however, with the signing of Glen Johnson the writing was always on the wall?
Elsewhere interest appears to be hotting up with Andri Voronin and Ryan Babel. With Moscow (brrrrr) calling for our Andri, a far call from his well publicised Crimbo Holiday in sweaty Florida. Babel has attracted the interest of Birmingham which, with respect, I would suggest is not the move he was looking for to further his World Cup chances but perhaps more in keeping with his from so far this season! Their offer of £8m is probably well below the sum Rafa was looking for bearing in mind he forked out around £13m for him in the first place?
I suspect Voronin will go. Babel, I’m not so sure about as a deal, given the amount the amount we paid for him, might be harder to agree. Perhaps the prospect of staying at Liverpool and having to prove his World Cup credentials with us will galvanise him, see him quit moaning and blaming Rafa for lack of opportunity rather than his own from and see him produce something approaching his so called potential. Sadly however the words “breath”, “not” and “holding” readily spring to mind!
Another odds and sods player Philip Degen has been linked with various German teams. Of all the players who might leave it will be difficult to write his Liverpool “obituary” because, let’s face it, he’s hardly played for us and when he does he disappears, via injury or sending off, almost as quickly as he appears!
Later, who might join and how much does Rafa have to spend – it might be a shorter post!