11 May 2015

Anfield-bound? Liverpool ready to pay €30m for powerhouse star who 'really likes' transfer speculation

Despite spending close to £60m on defenders over the last two years, Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers reportedly wants to sign yet another centre-half this summer, and the latest play to come onto the Reds' radar is Real Socieded captain Inigo Martinez.

According to Spanish journalist Kike Marin:

* Liverpool scouts watched 23-year old Martinez in action against Barcelona on Saturday.

Subsequent reports claim that:

* The Reds are 'ready to activate' Martinez's €30m buyout clause.

* Signing a centre-back is a 'top priority' for Brendan Rodgers this summer.

When asked recently about his future, Martinez told reporters:

“I really like it when the press and other clubs are talking about me. I won’t lie. Who wouldn’t? If they’re talking about you, it’s for a reason.”

Some info about Martinez:

* Contract expires: 2017

* 149 apps for Real Socieded (11 goals for the club so far)

* One appearance for the Spain national team.

* 2013: Helped Spain win the European Under-21 Championship.

* Four injuries since 2011: Hamstring; 2x muscle injuries, and Meniscal damage (13 games missed as a result).

* Averages 37 games a season.

* 41 yellow cards in 4 seasons (averages 10 per season; one every 3.2 games)

Clearly, Rodgers is still on the lookout for leadership in defence, and as the captain of Real Sociedad, Martinez fits the bill.

Something will have to give, though - the club arguably cannot support FOUR senior central defenders. A settled unit is absolutely imperative to defensive stability, and the best tactic is to choose a defensive partnership and stick with it as much as possible.

As such, if Martinez signs for Liverpool - and the Reds revert to four at the back - two of either Sakho, Lovren, or Skrtel will inevitably spend a significant amount of time on the bench.

Is throwing money at the problem the right solution, though? Spending £20m+ on a new central defender every season is not a viable transfer strategy, and sooner or later, Rodgers (or whoever is in charge next season), will have to choose a partnership and stick with it.

That said, in this instance, signing another defender makes sense. Sakho is increasingly injury prone, and this season, he's made only 26 appearances. He clearly cannot be relied-upon to be available most of the time, and if another defender comes in, Sakho could be the one who suffers the most.

Dejan Lovren buckled under the burden of leadership, and it's important that the next defender Liverpool sign is mentally strong enough to deal with the pressure of expectation.


Author: Jaimie K



83 comments:

  1. We need goals and midfielders more than another bloody C.B i would rather spend up on a new goalie if we are going to spend up down back.

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  2. I don't think signing a CD is a priority right now so I don't see Liverpool spending 30mn on CD unless we sell Lovren/Sakho. We should first sign couple of forwards, a DM and then spend on other positions (RB/LB, GK) with the remaining transfer budget.

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  3. Stan Dinaround1:58 pm, May 11, 2015

    I'd be saying bye bye to Lovren personnally, because Sakho is far moe dependable when he does play.... Lets not forget Toure, Coates and Ilori...

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  4. Frankie Fletcher2:10 pm, May 11, 2015

    Don't buy him and work with who we already have. The money will be better spent on a quality midfielder, and 2 high quality strikers. Lets build on what we have rather than just try and chop n change half the team every summer.

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  5. Our problems in defence are more to do with a competent right back & holding midfield. In games when we had Lucas playing a run of games the team had better balance and we kept clean sheets and turned our season around...we do need an attacking right back...and keep manquillo as back up

    If the likes of Sakho, Skrtel & even Loveren have defensive mid protecting them then we'll be fine. Hendo / Can can be the box to box mid and Coutinho / Lallana the attacking mid

    Ilori is also doing well on loan & can replace Toure next season...he has blistering pace and can recover allowing the defence to play further forward

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  6. Sakho,Skirtel,Can, the back three that works,one more CB as a backup would be great.Still not sold on moreno.

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  7. Lfc got tiago ilori out on loan, why dont BR call him back to the squad just wasted of money buying a new cb as lfc priority right now is looking for world strikers.

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  8. Agree with u bro, try get asier ilarramendi n javier pastore on midfield, carlos bacca or/and luiz adriano for striker...

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  9. No way cb is our priority. Sakho, Skrtel and Lovren to fight out two positions and one or two youngsters to sit on the bench..

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  10. Good to see that Gerrard wasn't conned by the Chelsea standing ovation. The pr*cks (just to avoid word filter) were happy to jeer him until Mourinho insisted that they clap. They'd suck their own brother off if Mourinho told them to. They think the taunts all game (and all season) should just be forgotten about because of some reluctant standing ovation? Piss off...

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  11. You're right; he desperately needs a bigger house to store all his money in. He simply can't indulge the Scrooge McDuck fantasy in Formby, or wherever he's having to put up with staying.

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  12. Haha, hey, you try growing that hair/beard combo ;)

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  13. Nicolas Chamberlain2:39 pm, May 11, 2015

    Outperforming him now? You give him way too much credit. No stats to back up this ridicilous, slightly oikofobic claim? Gerrard carried a whole team for more than a decade, what about Pirlo?

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  14. Stan Dinaround2:40 pm, May 11, 2015

    Funny thing is, this is supposed to be the hardest he's ever worked....

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  15. Gerrard will not? I doubt any of those you mentioned will concur. Can't believe you underestiate him that much because he didn't take England to the next level or Liverpool to EPL champions level, as both was veeery dificult, and I don't think if it was Pirlo who we (and England) had instead of Steven, we would've achieved it.

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  16. A drum and a cymbal roll down a cliff.

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  17. Pirlo did the same for Milan(less time) but had Kaka and Crespo, Maldini and Nesta, Seedorf and Gatusso...

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  18. Marchisio is Henderson in my view..

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  19. Stan Dinaround2:57 pm, May 11, 2015

    Thing is though, every aspect of Gerrards game these days gets negated by coaches who know how to counter them, ie. Villa sticking Agbonlahor on him the whole game, giving him no time to pass as he wants... I don't think Pirlo would be any different... In fact I know he wouldn't, it's what every intelligent coach does already.

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  20. Stan Dinaround3:03 pm, May 11, 2015

    Gerrard made some strong suggestions yesterday that FSG need to strenghten, seriously... I don't know if he said it knowing they won't, and is trying to make in clear to all wtching, he knows, or he's trying to public;y force them to do the right thing.... Who ignores the advice of the longest serving memeber....

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  21. Stan Dinaround3:04 pm, May 11, 2015

    Does it work if I say "goodbye Mourinho, LVG, and Wenger....."

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  22. Stan Dinaround3:06 pm, May 11, 2015

    Outstanding!

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  23. Stan Dinaround3:08 pm, May 11, 2015

    What about Wesley Sneijder... Is he still alive these days... Seems you go to Turkey, and the footballing world forgets you.

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  24. Notice I voted up your apology but not the joke.

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  25. Ah c'mon that's harsh- he just got his out of his a$$ recently cut him some slack

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  26. Nicolas Chamberlain3:12 pm, May 11, 2015

    Defenitely not the same. Gerrard did it almost on his own. There was always doubt about Pirlo thats why he played fot Inter, AC and Juve.

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  27. Actually lets forget them

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  28. Stan Dinaround3:14 pm, May 11, 2015

    Just needs to improve his decision making, but that is a problem withthe whole team at the moment... He could learn, if he was taught.

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  29. Dont mean to knock things.. but maybe its worth looking at doing the filtering in a different way..

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  30. I think that's because Gerrard chose to stay at Liverpool and played for England. I think if Gerrard played for any other big club and country, he would have been rated much higher than Pirlo.

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  31. Stan Dinaround3:16 pm, May 11, 2015

    Now I go cleanin' windows to earn an honest bob
    For a nosy parker it's an interestin' job

    Now it's a job that just suits me
    A window cleaner you would be
    If you can see what I can see
    When I'm cleanin' windows

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  32. I don't judge a player like that. I still think his goalscoring record is impressive and has largely underperformed at Liverpool. I was one of the few who supported Balotelli's transfer but he is not utilized properly.

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  33. Stan Dinaround3:20 pm, May 11, 2015

    So all the time I've been wasting my time... Drat, and double drat.

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  34. Unless manu loses both matches and we overcome the goal difference we are in EL, if we buy another CB, I will come to Liverpool and sack BR myself..

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  35. Inter is machine to destroy players, don't count them..Not the same, I stated who he played with- but was at the same top level.

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  36. Stan Dinaround3:24 pm, May 11, 2015

    If you ask any of theose players, I bet they would say the same of Gerrard, and if he had moved to Real or Chelsea, so would you.

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  37. Just a final word on Depay.

    PSV confirmed on Sky Sports that they were in discussion with three teams to sell Depay to: LFC, PSG and Man U .. and it was the players choice of where hr wanted to go.

    When challenged regarding BR's denial, PSV explicitly named Ayre as the party they were negotiating with.

    So unfortunately it would seem BR and LFC may be fibbing..

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  38. Stan Dinaround3:26 pm, May 11, 2015

    Did you ust say oikiofobic.. love it, word of the day.

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  39. Stan Dinaround3:29 pm, May 11, 2015

    I'll prop it, chances are I'll be needing it again.

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  40. Also following Depay's wondergoal yesterday, he confirmed it was touch and go between PSG and Man U...

    .. which would indicate LFC and BR could not convince him to come to Anfield..

    ..which could be the reason for BR to save face..

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  41. That's just PSV talking, isn't it? Why listen to what they have to say? It makes them sound good, makes Man Utd and De Gaal look good, and makes Depay look important. But who knows what is or isn't true?

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  42. We definitely need another first-team ready central defender. A unit of Lovren, Sakho, Skrtel and one more would be ok. We've been short there due to form and injuries this season and it could have been a lot worse. You have to plan for the future, as well, and it seems to me that none of those three is nailed-on to be at Liverpool even in two years time, for various reasons. So we need to be bedding in the successors.

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  43. Nicolas Chamberlain3:51 pm, May 11, 2015

    Ok, I agree. Gerrard also played with several great players but he had so much more responsibility. Pirlo is a great player but he never changed or decided games on his own.

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  44. He's incapable of adapting his game to meet the tactical demands of the coach, the game situation, or his team-mates skills. If you look at the front lines of every team in the champions league semi finals, they are *all* flexible mentally and tactically, -- even Lewandowski, who is probably the most limited of all them. Rodgers gave Balotelli a chance to grow and mature -- Balotelli gave up. Too much like hard work. This one is on the player.

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  45. I think his goalscoring rate from open play has deminished ober time and his overall effeciveness too. Thus why teams are happy to make a loss on the player rather than have him on the wage bill. How do you utilise a player who is "unmanageable"? As Mourinho called him.

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  46. Nicolas Chamberlain3:54 pm, May 11, 2015

    You don't have to be a FIFA nut to call this crazy.
    After letting Gerrard leave we sign Pirlo...

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  47. Exactly. How manay strikers are out there that have to play with a partner? How many play the same way if they don't have a partner as if they did? How many lay the ball off and stay where they are instead of getting in the box?
    He is an infuriating player as a fan. Imagine being the manager. Imagine (if history is repeating itself in regards to training etc) having that player with obvious talent and no serious mature brian to use it.

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  48. He probably makes Lovren a starter in a back four

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  49. I agree.


    Balotelli's issues with lack of effort have been exaggerated.


    He's been far from perfect here but he's been completely mismanaged strategically.


    It's his fault for being unable to adopt to the style of play. But it's also Rodgers' fault for being unable to adopt a style of play that would suit his best available striker.

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  50. Normally I'd agree with you, and you could be right in that PSV could also be fibbing as well.

    My point is a bit different. At least one of the two parties is fibbing, and Depay has effectively said he chose Man U over PSG..

    So why were LFC not in the mix to buy Depay - a player of quality if only going by his wonder goal yesterday and his stats for the year. Depay made a great deal about LvG being a big differentiator and now wanting to be a BIG player for Man U.. and lo and behold LFC turned down the chance to have LvG.

    In my mind, this episode is the main reason (over and beyond the poor performance of BR) for LFC to upgrade BR. Simply put, a higher profile manager will/should attract a higher profile/quality player.

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  51. While PSV are exaggerating, chances are the truth is there somewhere, or you are telling me that you believe BRs statements regarding Depay?

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  52. Right, yeah. I do think it's a real shame. If he'd just managed to bury one of those thousands of chances he got in September / October time, who knows. He *was* listening then, and maybe it would have worked out if he'd seen the changing method transfer into goals. Maybe. But the impression I have is that he just hasn't put in the work over the years for that finishing *bite* to be there, like second-nature. He missed so many sitters it was unreal.

    I say it's a shame, but I also fundamentally *don't care*. It's a shame for Liverpool, but I'm not one of those who regards Balotelli as a special snowflake. He was a promising teenager who couldn't adapt and grow when he needed to -- like thousands of other young footballers, and hell, like *millions* of young men living all kinds of lives, with all kinds of talents that they don't manage to learn to harness until it's too late. On to the next one, really.

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  53. Hehe, I just noticed: "serious brian".

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  54. I agree, we are missing a pacey ball playing CB who reads the games and can snuff out the ball over the top runs.

    However, in the scheme of things, this requirement comes in re-building the whole spine of the team:

    1. Striker
    2. Attacking Midfield
    3. Holding Midfield
    4. Centre Back
    5. Goalkeeper

    Unfortunately all the above will cost a lot if we're going for quality over quantity. Hence my priority would always be to break the bank to buy 1 & 3, and then make do until the next transfer window for the other 3 positions.

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  55. Louis van Gaal is awful, an awful manager. His tactics are pathetically, laughably out of date, his man management is atrocious, his legacy at clubs is laughable. He's a dinosaur, and not one of the cool ones like a Tyrannosaurus or Brontosaurus. One of the rubbish ones whose names are impossible to pronounce and whose fossils museums don't even bother to put on show because they are boring, boring and ugly.

    What he had at Man Utd was a transfer and wage budget with no practical upper limit. Rodgers is twice the coach van Gaal is. He's just bringing in Dutch players, like he does every time he goes to a club, to secure his own power and to enrich his friends in Holland, which is more-or-less the same thing.

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  56. No chance! I don't pay any attention at all to any of it unless I absolutely have to. Honestly, even I was able to see that Depay would go to Man Utd, as early as last summer, because Van Gaal was always going to move for him. I imagine that the recruitment people at Liverpool were able to reach the same conclusions, and I expect their conversation with Depay went along the lines:

    A TRAVELODGE
    MIDNIGHT
    NEAR THE M6

    LFC: [putting phone on table and taking a seat opposite DEPAY] Hello Memphis. Are you going to Man Utd?
    DEPAY: [looking sly and winking at his four agents] Maaaaaaybe!
    LFC: [picking up briefcase and heading for the door, speaking into phone] Yep, he's going to Man Utd.
    DEPAY: ...

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  57. I agree with Striker, holding mid & May GK (only if it's someone like Cech or of that calibre) as Mignolet has improved 2nd half of season

    I think right back takes priority over attacking midfielder (we have Coutinho & Lallana...sterling can also play there)

    If we sign 20+ league goal striker, strengthen midfield (defensive mid & goal scoring winger) and get a right back we could be challenging for top 4 next season

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  58. What? Those three with Can able to step up, and two youngsters we have there? If we were in CL I could maybe justify that, but.. Agree about successors but a a first team ready made would just be too much of a competition..

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  59. The move to put Sterling up front was very, very bold, and put the tactics ahead of all other considerations. It should be a lesson to everyone involved at LFC. It was one of the bravest bits of management you will ever see, in my opinion. Most managers would have resorted to a tried and tested option and changed the tactics accordingly.

    But it wasn't even BR's best move this season. That was the extraordinary invention of an asymmetrical 3-4-3 which took the club from nowhere to very close in a quite brilliant run of games.

    The people calling for him to be sacked or resign have no clue about football. What he has achieved this season is as remarkable as last year, as I see it.

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  60. Even so , Lovren IS that backup?

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  61. Maybe you're right, actually -- what I would really like to see is two defensive players who could cover at full back, central defense, or defensive midfield. Players like Can, in other words. Just more of them.

    Remember, my watchword for squad building, is that you can't have too many cultured defenders and pacy wingers. The squad with the most cultured defenders and pacy wingers invariably wins the league, and that's a fact -- a ROBOFACT™.

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  62. I think Pirlo was much like Scholes. Gerrard is altogether a different animal.

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  63. Christiansen from Chelski for £6m looks reasonable or even Fabian Schar from Basel, both are young and cheap options. We shouldn't splurge on a £20m+ defender because, let's be honest, he has to be able to respond to the pressure (which won't be placed on a young player to grow into the role) whilst being physically strong to deal with the PL.

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  64. Sakho fits the bill. Just hope he is done with injuries.. Lovren or Skrtel centrally with Sakho and Can on the flanks of a 3 men defence looks interesting to me. Than 2 DM, AM, 2 wingers and two strikers(one of them being that pacy winger, I see Ibe and Sterling on one side- Sterling being the striker, and Lallana on the other side). Now I am too much into this formation, let me lay it out.


    ...................Migs
    .......Can.........Skrtel.........Sakho
    ..............Kovacic
    ..........................Henderson
    Ibe..........Coutinho.........Lallana
    ........Sterling.......Sturridge/Origi

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  65. Pieter Engelbrecht5:09 pm, May 11, 2015

    at long last somebody with brains Illori a mustI

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  66. Thats fine, I think I would have reached that conclusion by christmas and tried to focus on someone else.


    The question is should the LFC manager get out and say "we did not want him to begin with?". It just sounds like sour grapes to me.

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  67. how many center backs do we need anyway we already have like 8 of them already

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  68. Trying to salvage something from this i wonder if we had been interested in him earlier in the piece but when it became clear that PSG and Manu were prepared for a bidding war we dropped any interest because as Brendan said that position is not such a priority for us.


    I might sound like an apologist for BR and perhaps he did lie because he thought he would get more flak if it looked like we were unable to compete with PSG and Manu

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  69. Would I be right to assume your day job has little or nothing to do with the diplomatic service ..... not even the Aussie one.;-)

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  70. I don't think rates him even that much

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  71. I dont think he rates him even that much

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  72. One would think maybe piling centrebacks is not the answer?

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  73. Ahhhh.. Singlehandedly decided many games is more accurate...

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  74. Wonderful technician!

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  75. Henderson plus mad skills and composure...

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  76. He is not that far with skills..

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