Dodgy transfer’s costing Anfield legacy

How often have you heard “how much?! For him?!” or “he’s not worth that, not in a million years!”  Sometimes clubs make transfers that seem ludicrous to an outsider and even to some insiders.  In order to highlight this point, I will now show one transfer comparison, which I find to be baffling, that took place this season. 

Exhibit A concerns two midfielders, both cost around £16 million pounds, both play in a similar position.  One has made most of his appearances in the second tier of English football and has 10 caps for his less than impressive footballing nation.  The other has spent most of his career amongst the top clubs in Spain and has one two European Championships with his country.

If you haven’t guessed by now I am of course referring to Liverpool’s Joe Allen and Arsenal’s Santi Cazorla.  Before I criticise anyone or anything let me set a few things straight.  I am fully aware that Allen is five years younger than Cazorla and that the transfer market for British players is ridiculously over inflated.  I know that the comparison isn’t perfect, but the point still stands, these two cost the same amount of money.

Despite the imperfections regarding this comparison I challenge anyone to seriously claim that Liverpool were better of spending £16 million pounds on Allen not Cazorla?  Again, I know they might not be the same ‘type’ of player or that Arsenal had already had links with Cazorla before his big money move to Malaga.  The facts of the matter are that Arsenal pay £16 million for a player who is quickly becoming one of the players of the season, and Liverpool spent the same amount on a promising Welshman with 1 full season of Premier League experience under his belt.

I don’t know whether Liverpool can’t entice the best players anymore or if no one knew Santi would be so super but in my mind, if Liverpool want to regrow into the huge mould they have created over the years, transfer comparisons like this should need to stop being made.

Tom DiMaio


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